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Articles tagged #Boston Marathon
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Korir targets improved display at Boilermaker 15k

Two-time Los Angeles Marathon champion John Korir returns to the Boilermaker 15K road race on Sunday, itching to go one step better after finishing second to Ethiopia’s Jemal Yimer last year.

Korir will use the race to gauge his body ahead of the Chicago Marathon on October 13.

“I am heading there to win the race after missing out last year,” said Korir. “I am well prepared. This will be a big event for me.”

Korir, a younger brother to former Boston Marathon champion Wesley Korir, added: “I will use it as part of my speed work and endurance training for the Chicago Marathon. Chicago is no joke but a real battle for the title since it attracts top marathoners.”

Korir spoke at the Eldoret International Airport on Wednesday morning as he started his journey to the USA.

Last year, Korir finished second in 42:13 behind Yimer (42:06) as Kenya’s Charles Langat completed the podium in 42:28.

At the Chicago Marathon, Korir finished fourth in 2:05:09 in a race won by the late Kelvin Kiptum in a world marathon record time of 2:00:35.

The then defending champion, Benson Kipruto, was second in 2:04:02 as Belgium’s Bashir Abdi completed the podium in 2:04:32.

In 2022, Korir was third in 2:05:01 behind Kipruto (2:04:24) and Ethiopia’s Seif Tura 2:04:49.

(07/11/2024) Views: 72 ⚡AMP
by Emmanuen Sabuni
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Boilermaker 15k

Boilermaker 15k

The Boilermaker 15K is the premier event of Boilermaker Weekend. This world krenowned race is often referred to as the country's best 15K. The Boilermaker 15K is recognized for its entertaining yet challenging course and racing's best post-race party, hosted by the F.X. Matt Brewing Company, featuring Saranac beer and a live concert! With 3 ice and water stops every...

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Sharon Lokedi finally gets the chance she deserved after late inclusion in Kenya’s Olympics team

Marathoner Sharon Lokedi will be heading to the Paris 2024 Olympics after profiting from Brigid Kosgei’s misfortune, having been controversially omitted from the team.

Sharon Lokedi has finally got the chance to represent Kenya at the Paris 2024 Olympics after her late inclusion as a replacement for the injured Brigid Kosgei.

Lokedi was widely expected to make Kenya’s final three, alongside two-time Boston Marathon winner Hellen Obiri and defending champion Peres Jepchirchir, but was controversially omitted for former world record holder Kosgei.

The decision drew the ire of fans who felt Lokedi deserved a slot in the team given her recent form that has seen her win New York Marathon in 2022 before a third-place finish last year and ran Obiri close in Boston in 2024 before finishing second.

Kosgei, meanwhile, won the Lisbon Half Marathon in March this year but could only manage fifth in London and has not won a race since the Tokyo Marathon in March 2022, with injuries and form disrupting her.

However, Kosgei will now not be on the plane to Paris due to another injury, paving the way for Lokedi, who had been named as a reserve.

“The Kenya Marathon team heading to the Olympic games in Paris has been training for slightly over two months, and the athletes continue to receive financial support and technical support,” read a statement from the National Olympics Committee of Kenya.

“It’s during the one of the regular monitoring sessions that Olympic silver medalist Brigid Kosgei expressed an injury concern to the technical team. Upon a review by the medical team led by the Chief Medical officer Dr Ondiege, Kosgei will not be heading to Paris for her second Olympics.

“Sharon Lokedi, who was named in the reserve team, will now join defending champion Peres Jepchirchir and Hellen Obiri to fly Kenya’s flag in Paris.”

(07/10/2024) Views: 71 ⚡AMP
by Joel Omotto
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Confirmed! Brigid Kosgei out of Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Changes have allegedly been made to the women's marathon team for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Fans had caused an uproar concerning the women’s marathon team, questioning why Sharon Lokedi was selected as a reserve and Brigid Kosgei included in the main team.

However, Pulse Sports has established that the 2022 New York City marathon champion Lokedi will now be included in the main team. Lokedi will join defending champion Peres Jepchirchir and two-time Boston Marathon champion Hellen Obiri.

In a press statement released by the National Olympic Committee of Kenya, Kosgei had expressed injury concerns and was forced to withdraw from the event. She will not be heading to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

NOC-K announced that upon a review by the medical team led by the Chief Medical Officer Dr Ondiege, Kosgei will not be heading to Paris for her second Olympics.

"Sharon Lokedi who was named in the reserve team will now join defending Champion Peres Jepchirchir and Hellen Obiri to fly Kenya’s flag in Paris," the statement read in part.

"The National Olympics committee would like to thank Brigid for the time to spent in training under the Team Kenya Umbrella and will continue supporting her throughout the season."

Lokedi has showcased her fighting spirit in her recent races, finishing second in the 10km road race at the Mastercard New York Mini 10K. She also stuck with Obiri until the finish line at the Boston Marathon, finishing second. Last year, Lokedi finished third at the New York City Marathon.

On her part, Kosgei has struggled with injuries, failing to live up to the billing in her recent races. In 2023, she failed to finish at the London Marathon and proceeded to finish fourth at the New York City Marathon.

The former world marathon record holder then ended her season with a win at the Abu Dhabi Marathon, crossing the finish line in 2:19:15.

This season, Kosgei opened her season with a win at the Lisbon Half Marathon before proceeding to the London Marathon where she finished fifth.

The women's Olympic race will take place on August 11, the day after the men's marathon.

(07/10/2024) Views: 108 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wafula
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Marathon legend Catherine Ndereba finally explains why she retired unconventionally

Ndereba is widley regarded as one of the greatest female marathoners of all time, but she retired quite unceremoniously.

Marathon icon Catherine Ndereba has explained why she decided to retire without a lot of glamor back in 2012.

Known for her unparalleled achievements in the marathon world, Ndereba’s decision to step away from the sport without fanfare was driven by persistent health issues.

Between 2003 and 2008, Ndereba consistently finished in the top two in five successive global championship marathons. 

She twice won the marathon at the World Championships in Athletics and secured silver medals at the Summer Olympic Games in 2004 and 2008, making her Kenya’s first female multi-medalist. 

Her accolades also include four Boston Marathon victories and two Chicago Marathon wins. It was at the latter in 2001 that she broke the women’s marathon world record with a time of 2:18:47. In 2008, the Chicago Tribune’s Philip Hersh described her as the greatest women’s marathoner of all time.

Despite these incredible accomplishments, Ndereba chose to retire quietly in 2012. In an interview on the Safari Za Mabingwa show with comedian Obina on KTN News, Ndereba revealed the reasons behind her understated retirement.

“I stopped unceremoniously because I developed some problems. Just like with your car, as you continue driving it, you know it needs service. It may get in an accident or break something,” Ndereba explained.

A problematic ankle, which she had managed throughout her career, became overwhelming towards the end. 

“For me, I developed an injury that could not be fixed there and then. It is something that needs a lot of attention. I needed surgery but decided against it. I wanted to heal naturally,” she shared.

Ndereba’s right ankle ligaments were gradually torn over time. “I went to the doctor, who assessed and did all the images, including the MRI that showed exactly what was wrong.”

Despite the possibility of prolonging her career through surgery, Ndereba opted against it. “I did not want to have it. All that time in the hospital? And yet, I could not make a bigger name for myself after what God gave me. I was totally content,” she stated.

Ndereba’s decision to retire without seeking further medical intervention reflects her contentment with her illustrious career. Her legacy as a marathon icon remains intact, celebrated for her remarkable achievements and her graceful exit from the sport.

(07/08/2024) Views: 95 ⚡AMP
by Mark Kinyanjui
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'Doing it for my kids'- Kenya's new 800m star shares main motivation ahead of Olympics debut in Paris

Lilian Odira has opened up about the main motivation behind her pursuit for success in her debut at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

National 800m champion Lilian Odira has opened about her main source of motivation as she gears up for her maiden Olympic Games in Paris, France.

The Africa 800m silver medallist explained that her children mean the world to her and she cannot stand not being able to provide for them. Odira took a maternity break in 2020 and returned to competition in 2023 after having her two kids.

Speaking to Nation Sport, she noted that it was not an easy ordeal trying to make a comeback. The 25-year-old had added weight to 86kg and had to cut down to about 55kg, something that proved to be an uphill task.

However, she noted that two-time Boston Marathon champion Hellen Obiri, having walked the same path, was very instrumental in ensuring she does what is necessary to regain her form.

Follow the Pulse Sports Kenya X (Twitter) handle for more news.

“I’m doing all these just for my kids. You can’t explain to them (her kids) that you don’t have so I just have to work hard because of them. In 2020, I took a maternity break and then when I came back, I don’t if it’s by good luck or bad luck, I also got another baby,” she said.

“Then in 2023, I came back and my goal was to shed my weight. It’s not an easy journey, I had 86kg coming back from maternity and I remember Hellen Obiri is the one who took me to jog and I felt like it was not necessary for me to pursue this career. Obiri kept on motivating me and encouraging me since she had also been there.”

She had to sacrifice a lot, explaining that she used to do long runs up to 30km. Odira also explained that self-belief is what helped her get back into shape.

Odira bounced back this season, winning the national championships and proceeding to the Africa Senior Athletics Championships where she won a silver medal behind Sarah Moraa.

She also punched her ticket to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games and it will be her first time on the global stage. This was after she won the national trials, clocking 1:59.27 to cross the finish line ahead of Mary Moraa and Sarah who clocked respective times of 1:59.35 and 1:59.39.

“In Paris, it’s going to be a surprise to many…the trials were a surprise to many. I see many people talking on social media saying that we can’t win a gold medal,” she said.

“I think there was this race that Moraa had with Keely Hodgkinson and she came first. After that, people started talking but I want them to understand that as an athlete, you don’t get to win every day. People forgot about the many things Moraa has done and focused on that loss only.”

(07/03/2024) Views: 132 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Boston Marathon's logo refresh leaves some unhappy

Back in 1890, the Boston Athletic Association chose the mythical unicorn to be its symbol. Later named Spike, that unicorn saw several redesigns in the ensuing century, before eventually finding its way to prominent placement on the Boston Marathon medal. For years, Spike faced leftward, its horn jutting into the banner type of Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.). Then in early June, Spike changed course.

The B.A.A. unveiled a new logo for the Boston Marathon, and people are not happy about it.

On its face, the redesign is small: Spike’s orientation is flipped, and he’s made a bit more menacing. The marathon logo, along with the new Spike, sports a fresh Bank of America sponsorship tag. Despite the small tweaks, the community response has been staggering: a recent Boston.com reader poll found 55% not liking the new logo, compared to just 14% loving it and 32% expressing indifference. 

Why the backlash? The B.A.A. proves just how hard it is to stay fresh (and funded) while maintaining a sprawling, legacy-minded audience. Change, for some proud marathoners, is hard. 

SMALL CHANGES, BIG REACTIONS

The most obvious change in Spike’s design is his orientation. Where the unicorn mascot used to look left, now he looks right. The B.A.A. calls this looking “forward,” pointing towards the miles ahead. 

“We are looking forward, looking towards the future of the Boston Marathon, looking towards the future of running in general,” says Scott Stover, chief marketing officer at B.A.A. “Turning Spike around seemed natural as we were entering this next era.” 

More controversial is Spike’s “athletic jawline,” which curves into the chin where it previously ran smooth. It creates the brief illusion of muscles—which the B.A.A. says represents the “athletic and gritty nature of Boston.” Coupled with a more “determined eye,” the unicorn may just be a fiercer version of his former self. Alex Cyr, a sports journalist covering marathons, finds this change laughable.

“The unicorn looks like it went from Pony[ta] to Rapidash,” Cyr says, referencing the Pokemon evolution. “You just see a unicorn that’s gotten a lot meaner.” 

Stover contests the claim that Spike has gotten meaner, instead noting that they instituted these design changes to make Spike “serious and intentional.” 

THE QUESTION OF CORPORATE BRANDING

Alongside the redesigned Spike, the new Boston Marathon logo also features a stamp of corporate marketing: the big “Bank of America” subtext, as well as the bank’s logo. While the fiercer appearance has some runners confused, the corporate branding has incited more anger. 

Back in 1890, the Boston Athletic Association chose the mythical unicorn to be its symbol. Later named Spike, that unicorn saw several redesigns in the ensuing century, before eventually finding its way to prominent placement on the Boston Marathon medal. For years, Spike faced leftward, its horn jutting into the banner type of Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.). Then in early June, Spike changed course.

The B.A.A. unveiled a new logo for the Boston Marathon, and people are not happy about it.

On its face, the redesign is small: Spike’s orientation is flipped, and he’s made a bit more menacing. The marathon logo, along with the new Spike, sports a fresh Bank of America sponsorship tag. Despite the small tweaks, the community response has been staggering: a recent Boston.com reader poll found 55% not liking the new logo, compared to just 14% loving it and 32% expressing indifference. 

Why the backlash? The B.A.A. proves just how hard it is to stay fresh (and funded) while maintaining a sprawling, legacy-minded audience. Change, for some proud marathoners, is hard. 

Alongside the redesigned Spike, the new Boston Marathon logo also features a stamp of corporate marketing: the big “Bank of America” subtext, as well as the bank’s logo. While the fiercer appearance has some runners confused, the corporate branding has incited more anger. 

Just look at the Instagram comments under the announcement: “The big difference is adding Bank of America to the logo which clearly no one likes,” comments one marathoner. “Makes me less likely to bank with BoA,” comments another. Clearly, there is some ire for this emblazoned corporate sponsorship. 

“Bank of America is invested in helping us continue to make the Boston Marathon and all of our events greater and greater every year,” Stover says. “So we’re proud of that partnership, and it is also very standard in sports marketing for brands to be included.”

This isn’t the first time the B.A.A. found themselves in hot water for the Bank of America branding. Back in April, the Boston Marathon debuted a new medal, featuring the bank’s logo on each and every medallion. The criticism was immediate. 

Cyr was in Boston for the new medal’s premiere, and notes that there were “a few complaints.” He chalks this up to the race’s legacy: “[When] a race that’s been around for a long time, comes out with a rebrand, it is met with a bit of resistance by the traditionalists.”

The challenge that comes with rebranding an institution as beloved as the Boston Marathon is. balancing pride with progress. Marathoners complain of Spike’s fiercer look not because of any apparent flaw, but because they’ll have outdated tattoos. They complain of the Bank of America-themed logo not because they want to run the B.A.A. dry, but because they want to keep it pure. Eventually, the redesigned logo will become a piece of the Boston Marathon’s legacy; until then, the B.A.A. might have to endure some angry comments.

(07/01/2024) Views: 136 ⚡AMP
by henry Chandonnet
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Sawe targets next year's Boston Marathon after ruling 10k

Prague Half Marathon champion Sabastian Sawe is setting his sights on the 42km race as he sets his target on next year's Boston Marathon on April 21.

This comes after the 29-year-old's impressive victory at the Boston 10K Road Race on Sunday, where he clocked 27:42.

Wesley Kiptoo (27:53) and World Half Marathon silver medallist Daniel Ebenyo (27:55) claimed second and third respectively.

In the women's elite race, Ethiopians swept the podium as Melknat Wudu (31:15), Bosena Mulatie (31:16) and Senayet Getachew (31:17) took the top three slots.

Kenya’s Irene Cheptai (31:19), Stacy Ndiwa (31:20), Sarah Chelagat (31:27), and Daisy Jepkemei (31:39) followed in that order. 

After stamping authority in his first race in the United States, Sawe stated he harbours ambitions of taking part in the Boston Marathon.

“My dream now is to take part in the Boston Marathon,” Sawe stated.

Sawe, primarily a half marathon and road race specialist, boasts an impressive resume including the Prague Half Marathon title which he won on April 6 in a time of 58:24.

He also holds a title from last year’s Berlin Half Marathon (59:00) as well as the 2022 Bahrain Half Marathon (58:58). 

Sawe also won the World Road Running Championships half marathon title in Riga, Latvia, where he clocked 59:10. Ebenyo (59:14) and Samwel Nyamai (59:19) finished second and third.

He secured gold at the Adizero Road to Records 10K last April with a time of 26:49 and has a silver medal from the 2022 edition, clocking 27:06 behind Nicholas Kipkorir (27:05).

His other accolades include victories at the 2022 Roma (58:02) and Seville Half Marathons (59:02), and gold at the Gold Gala Fernanda in the 10,000m (27:09.46).

Reflecting on his Boston performance, Sawe said the course was fair despite too much rain.

“The course was not tough. The weather, however, made it difficult but I was able to do my best and come out with the victory,” he stated.

After hitting the halfway mark in 13:52, Sawe broke away from the leading pack of five which included Ebenyo, Kiptoo, Ethiopia’s Yemane Haileselassie and Abel Kipchumba.

“This was my first time running the Boston 10km Road race. The race was amazing and I had prepared adequately for it,” Sawe commented.

In addition to the winner’s trophy, Sawe also took home Sh1.3 million in cash prize money.

(07/01/2024) Views: 132 ⚡AMP
by Teddy Mulei
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Which U.S marathon provides the most prize money to the winner? Here are the top seven

Which U.S marathon provides the most prize money to the winner? This question continuously rings in the minds of some youngsters who dream about running and getting the best time in some of these world events or even breaking records. Just like any other sport, races also offer the best prizes to the winners. Running challenges you with self-control and persistence besides the cash injections provided to the top athletes. Here is a ranked list of 7 U.S marathons with the highest prize money, sourced from factual publications.

Which U.S marathon provides the most prize money to the winner?

According to RunRepeat, the highest prize money offering in the United States is the Boston Marathon, which we will explore in-depth in this article. Nevertheless, every year, the country is flooded with innumerable races, most of which gather teams of participants. Most dared to break their personal while others also won the races.

(06/21/2024) Views: 213 ⚡AMP
by Kenneth Mwenda
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Two B.A.A. Athletes Qualify For U.S. Olympic Team Trials

The Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) today announced that B.A.A. High Performance Team members Annie Rodenfels and Bethany Hasz have earned spots on the starting line for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Track & Field, to be held later this month in Eugene, Oregon from June 21-30.

Rodenfels will compete in the women’s 3000m steeplechase (preliminary round June 24/final on June 27), while Hasz will toe the line in the women’s 5000m (preliminary round on June 21/final on June 24).

The Trials will be held at historic Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, with top three finishers in each event slated to qualify for the Paris Olympic Games (so long as athletes have met the Olympic standard or earned enough qualifying points).

Rodenfels’ personal best in the steeplechase is 9:25.48, set last year. She won the steeplechase at the Drake Relays this year (9:31.03), was fourth at the Boston 5K in April, and clocked 15:03.97 indoors for 5000m in December 2023. Last fall she won the USATF 5K National Championship on the roads in New York City.

Hasz is coming off a 5000m lifetime best of 15:05.80 set May 17 in winning the Drake Relays 5000m. This year she’s also recorded personal bests in the road 5K (15:30), road 10K (32:03), and mile indoors (4:39.24). She earned a bronze medal at the 2023 USATF 5K National Championships, finishing third just behind Rodenfels and Olympian Rachel Smith.

The B.A.A.’s High Performance team supports runners on their way towards making international teams, with the goal of competing at the highest level: the Olympic Games, World Athletics Championships, and Abbott World Marathon Majors. The B.A.A. is sponsored by adidas, which provides comprehensive support for the organization’s High Performance team, running club, and mass-participatory events.

B.A.A HIGH PERFORMANCE TEAM ROSTER:

Eric Hamer

Bethany Hasz

Megan Hasz

Josh Kalapos

Barry Keane

Matt McDonald

Annie Rodenfels

Abbey Wheeler

ABOUT THE BOSTON ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION (B.A.A.) 

Established in 1887, the Boston Athletic Association is a non-profit organization with a mission of promoting a healthy lifestyle through sports, especially running. The B.A.A. manages the Boston Marathon, and supports comprehensive charity, youth, and year-round programming. The 129th Boston Marathon presented by Bank of America is scheduled to take place on Monday, April 21, 2025. The Boston Marathon is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors, along with international marathons in Tokyo, London, Berlin, Chicago, and New York City. For more information on the B.A.A., please visit www.baa.org.

(06/14/2024) Views: 175 ⚡AMP
by B.A.A.
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U.S. Olympic Team Trials Track And Field

U.S. Olympic Team Trials Track And Field

Eugene, Oregon has been awarded the 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Track & Field, USA Track & Field and the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee announced today. From June 21 to 30, Hayward Field at the University of Oregon will be home to one of the biggest track and field competitions in the country, as the U.S. Olympic Team...

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Boston Marathon qualifying standards to remain the same for 2025

After much speculation, the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) says marathon qualifying times will not change.

On Monday, the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) announced that it will not raise the entry standards for the 2025 Boston Marathon. This news will be a sigh of relief for many runners who have already achieved a Boston qualifying time for next year.

According to the B.A.A., the qualifying standards across all age brackets will remain the same as they were for the 2024 Boston Marathon. However, achieving a qualifying standard does not guarantee entry into the marathon. If applications exceed capacity, those applicants who exceed their qualifying time standards by the smallest margins may not be accepted.

At the 2024 Boston Marathon, there was a cutoff time of five minutes and 29 seconds per age group, one of the largest since time cutoffs were introduced in 2012. There were more than 33,000 applicants last year, with more than 11,000 athletes turned down despite hitting qualifying times.

Due to the large number of athletes being turned down in 2024, there was much speculation about whether the B.A.A. would raise the entry standards for 2025. The field size for the 129th Boston Marathon will remain at 30,000 participants and the race will take place on Monday, April 21, 2025.

For those who have hit a qualifying time for 2025, mark your calendars and set a reminder. Registration will open on Monday, Sept. 9, 2024 at 10:00 a.m. ET, and will close on Friday, Sept. 13, 2024 at 5:00 p.m. ET. The 2025 Boston Marathon qualifying window opened on Sept. 1, 2023, and will close at 5:00 p.m. ET on Friday, Sept. 13, 2024. Any athlete who has achieved a qualifying time in this window may submit a registration application.

The qualifying window for the 130th Boston Marathon, scheduled for April 20, 2026, will open on Sept. 1, 2024. Registration details for the 2026 race will be announced following the 2025 Boston Marathon.

(06/12/2024) Views: 190 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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TWENTY-ONE YEARS AGO, HE WAS INCARCERATED FOR LIFE. LAST YEAR, HE RAN THE NYC MARATHON A RADICALLY CHANGED MAN.

RAHSAAN ROUNDED THOMAS A CORNER. Gravel underfoot gave way to pavement, then dirt. Another left turn, and then another. In the distance, beyond the 30-foot wall and barbed wire separating him from the world outside, he could see the 2,500-foot peak of Mount Tamalpais. He completed the 400-meter loop another 11 times for an easy three miles.

Rahsaan wasn’t the only runner circling the Yard that evening in the fall of 2017. Some 30 people had joined San Quentin State Prison’s 1,000 Mile Club by the time Rahsaan arrived at the prison four years prior, and the group had only grown since. Starting in January each year, the club held weekly workouts and monthly races in the Yard, culminating with the San Quentin Marathon—105 laps—in November. The 2017 running would be Rahsaan’s first go at the 26.2 distance. 

For Rahsaan and the other San Quentin runners, Mount Tam, as it’s known, had become a beacon of hope. It’s the site of the legendary Dipsea, a 7.4-mile technical trail from Mill Valley to Stinson Beach. After the 1,000 Mile Club was founded in 2005, it became tradition for club members who got released to run that trail; their stories soon became lore among the runners still inside. “I’ve been hearing about the Dipsea for the longest,” Rahsaan says. 

Given his sentence, he never expected to run it. Rahsaan was serving 55 years to life for second-degree murder. Life outside, let alone running over Mount Tam all the way to the Pacific, felt like a million miles away. But Rahsaan loved to run—it gave him a sense of freedom within the prison walls, and more than that, it connected him to the community of the 1,000 Mile Club. So if the volunteer coaches and other runners wanted to talk about the Dipsea, he was happy to listen. 

We’ll get to the details of Rahsaan’s crime later, but it’s useful to lead with some enduring truths: People can grow in even the harshest environments, and running, whether around a lake or a prison yard, has the power to change lives. In fact, Rahsaan made a lot of changes after he went to prison: He became a mentor to at-risk youth, began facing the reality of his violence, and discovered the power of education and his own pen. Along the way, Rahsaan also prayed for clemency. The odds were never in his favor. 

To be clear, this is not a story about a wrongful conviction. Rahsaan took the life of another human being, and he’s spent more than two decades reckoning with that fact. He doesn’t expect forgiveness. Rather, it’s a story about a man who you could argue was set up to fail, and for more than 30 years that’s exactly what he did. But it’s also a story of navigating the delta between memory and fact and finding peace in the idea that sometimes the most formative things in our lives may not be exactly as they seem. And mostly, it’s a story of transformation—of learning to do good in a world that too often encourages the opposite. 

RAHSAAN “NEW YORK” THOMAS GREW UP IN BROWNSVILLE, A ONE-SQUARE-MILE SECTION OF EASTERN Brooklyn wedged between Crown Heights and East New York. As a kid he’d spend hours on his Commodore 64 computer trying to code his own games. He loved riding his skateboard down the slope of his building’s courtyard. On weekends, he and his friends liked to play roller hockey there, using tree branches for sticks and a crushed soda can for a puck.

Once a working-class Jewish enclave, Brownsville started to change in the 1960s, when many white families relocated to the suburbs, Black families moved in, and city agencies began denying residents basic services like trash pickup and streetlight repairs. John Lindsay, New York’s mayor at the time, once referred to the area as “Bombsville” on account of all the burned-out buildings and rubble-filled empty lots. By 1971, the year after Rahsaan was born, four out of five families in Brownsville were on government assistance. More than 50 years later, Brownsville still has a poverty rate close to 30 percent. The neighborhood’s credo, “Never ran, never will,” is typically interpreted as a vow of resilience in the face of adversity. For some, like Rahsaan, it has always meant something else: Don’t back down. 

The first time Rahsaan didn’t run, he was 5 or 6 years old. He had just moved into Atlantic Towers, a pair of 24-story buildings beset with rotting walls and exposed sewer pipes that housed more than 700 families. Three older kids welcomed him with their fists. Even if Rahsaan had tried to run, he wouldn’t have gotten far. At that age, Rahsaan was skinny, slow, and uncoordinated. He got picked on a lot. Worse, he was light-skinned and frequently taunted as “white boy.” The insult didn’t even make sense to Rahsaan, whose mother is Black and whose father was Puerto Rican. “I feel Black,” he says. “I don’t feel [like] anything else. I feel like myself.” 

Rahsaan hated being called white. It was the mid-1970s; Roots had just aired on ABC, and Rahsaan associated being white with putting people in chains. Five-Percent Nation, a Black nationalist movement founded in Harlem, had risen to prominence and ascribed godlike status to Black men. Plus, all the best athletes were Black: Muhammad Ali. Reggie Jackson. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. In Rahsaan’s world, somebody white was considered physically inferior. 

Raised by his mother, Jacqueline, Rahsaan never really knew his father, Carlos, who spent much of Rahsaan’s childhood in prison. In 1974, Jacqueline had another son, Aikeem, with a different man, and raised her two boys as a single mom. Carlos also had another son, Carl, whom Rahsaan met only once, when Carl was a baby. Still, Rahsaan believed “the myth,” as he puts it now, that one day Carlos would return and relieve him, his mom, and Aikeem of the life they were living. Jacqueline had a bachelor’s degree in sociology and worked three jobs to keep her sons clothed and fed. She nurtured Rahsaan’s interest in computers and sent him to a parochial school that had a gifted program. Rahsaan describes his family as “upper-class poor.” They had more than a lot of families, but never enough to get out of Brownsville, away from the drugs and the violence.

Some traumas are small but are compounded by frequency and volume; others are isolated occurrences but so significant that they define a person for a lifetime. Rahsaan remembers his grandmother telling him that his father had been found dead in an alley, throat slashed, wallet missing. Rahsaan was 12 at the time, and he understood it to mean his father had been murdered for whatever cash he had on him—maybe $200, not even. Now he would never come home. 

Rahsaan felt like something he didn’t even have had been taken from him. “It just made me different, like, angry,” he says. By the time he got to high school, Rahsaan resolved to never let anyone take anything from him or his family again. “I started feeling like, next time somebody tryin’ to rob me, I’m gonna stab him,” he says. He started carrying a knife, a razor, rug cutters—“all kinds of sharp stuff.” Rahsaan never instigated a fight, but he refused to back down when threatened or attacked. It was a matter of survival.

The first time Rahsaan picked up a gun, it was to avenge his brother. Aikeem, who was 14 at the time, had been shot in the leg by a guy in the neighborhood who was trying to rob him and Rahsaan. A few months later, Rahsaan saw the shooter on the street, ran to the apartment of a drug dealer he knew, and demanded a gun. Rahsaan, then 18, went back outside and fired three shots at the guy. Rahsaan was arrested and sent to Rikers Island, then released after three days: The guy he’d shot was wanted for several crimes and refused to testify against Rahsaan. 

By day, Rahsaan tried to lead a straight life. He graduated from high school in 1988 and got a job taking reservations for Pan Am Airways. He lost the job after Flight 103 exploded in a terrorist bombing over Scotland that December, and the company downsized. Rahsaan got a new job in the mailroom at Debevoise & Plimpton, a white-shoe law firm in midtown Manhattan. He could type 70 words a minute and hoped to become a paralegal one day. 

Rahsaan carried a gun to work because he’d been conditioned to expect the worst when he returned to Brownsville at night. “If you constantly being traumatized, you constantly feeling unsafe, it’s really hard to be in a good mind space and be a good person,” he says. “I mean, you have to be extraordinary.”

After high school, some of Rahsaan’s friends went to Old Westbury, a state university on Long Island with a rolling green campus. He would sometimes visit them, and at a Halloween party one night, he got into a scrape with some other guys and fired his gun. Rahsaan spent the next year awaiting trial in county jail, the following year at Cayuga State Prison in upstate New York, and another 22 months after that on work release, living in a halfway house in Queens. He got a job working the merch table for the Blue Man Group at Astor Place Theater, but the pay wasn’t enough to support the two kids he’d had not long after getting out of Cayuga.

He started selling a little crack around 1994, when he was 24. By 27 he was dealing full-time. He didn’t want to be a drug dealer, though. “I just felt desperate,” he says. Rahsaan had learned to cut hair in Cayuga, and he hoped to save enough money to open a barbershop. 

He never got that opportunity. By the summer of 1999, things in New York had gotten too hot for Rahsaan and he fled to California. For the first time in his 28 years, Rahsaan Thomas was on the run. 

EVERY RUNNER HAS AN ORIGIN STORY. SOME START IN SCHOOL, OTHERS TAKE UP RUNNING TO IMPROVE their health or beat addiction. Many stories share common themes, if not exact details. And some, like Rahsaan’s, are absolutely singular. 

Rahsaan drove west with ambitions to break into the music business. He wanted to be a manager, maybe start his own label. His new girlfriend would join him a week later in La Jolla, where they’d found an apartment, so Rahsaan went first to Big Bear, a small town deep in the San Bernardino Mountains 100 miles east of Los Angeles. It’s where Ryan Hall grew up, and where he discovered running at age 13 by circling Big Bear Lake—15 miles—one afternoon on a whim. Hall has recounted that story so many times that it’s likely even better known than the American records he would go on to set in the half and full marathons. 

Rahsaan didn’t know anything about Ryan Hall, who at the time was just about to start his junior year at Big Bear High School and begin a two-year reign as the California state cross-country champion. He didn’t even know there was a lake in Big Bear. Rahsaan went to Big Bear to box with a friend, Shannon Briggs, a two-time World Boxing Organization heavyweight champion. 

Briggs and Rahsaan had grown up together in Atlantic Towers. As kids they liked to ride bikes in the courtyard, and later they went to the same high school in Fort Greene. But Briggs’s mom had become addicted to drugs by his sophomore year, and they were evicted from the Towers. Briggs and Rahsaan lost touch. Briggs began spending time at a boxing gym in East New York; often he’d sleep there. He had talent in the ring. People thought he might even be the next Mike Tyson, another native of Brownsville who was himself a world heavyweight champ from 1986 to 1989. 

Briggs went pro in 1991, and by the end of that decade he was earning seven figures fighting guys like George Foreman and Lennox Lewis. Rahsaan was at those fights. The two had reconnected in 1996, when Rahsaan was trying to rebuild his life after prison and Briggs’s boxing career was on the rise. In August 1999, Briggs was gearing up to fight Francois Botha, a South African known as the White Buffalo, and had decamped to Big Bear to train. “He was like, ‘Yo, come live with me, bro,’” Rahsaan recalls.

Briggs was running three miles a day to increase his stamina. His route was a simple out-and-back on a wooded trail, and on one of Rahsaan’s first days there, he decided to join him. Rahsaan hadn’t done so much as a push-up since getting out of prison, but he wanted to hang with his friend. Briggs and his training partners set off at their usual clip; within a few minutes they’d disappeared from Rahsaan’s view. By the time they were doubling back, he’d barely made it a half mile. 

Rahsaan never liked feeling physically inferior. So back in La Jolla, he started running a few times a week, going to the gym, whatever it took. Before long he was up to five miles. And the next time he ran with Briggs, he could keep up. After that, he says, “Running just became my thing.” 

FOR YEARS, RAHSAAN HAD BUCKED AT TAKING RESPONSIBILITY for the murder that sent him to prison. The other guys had guns, too, he insisted. If he hadn’t shot them, they’d have shot him. It was self-defense. 

In the moment, he had no reason to think otherwise. It was April 2000. A friend had arranged to sell $50,000 worth of weed, and Rahsaan went along to help. They met in the parking lot of a strip mall in L.A., broad daylight. The buyers brought guns instead of cash, things went sideways, and, in a flash of adrenaline, Rahsaan used the 9mm he’d packed for protection, killing one man and putting the other in critical condition. He was 29 and had been in California eight months. 

After awaiting trial for three years in the L.A. County jails, Rahsaan was sentenced to 55 years to life. But for the crushing finality of it, the grim interminability, the prospect of never seeing the outside world again, he was on familiar ground. Even Brownsville had been a kind of prison—one defined, as Rahsaan puts it now, by division and neglect, a world unto itself that societal forces made nearly impossible to escape. He was used to life inside. 

Rahsaan spent the next 10 years shuttling between maximum security facilities, the bulk of those years at Calipatria State Prison, 30 miles from the Mexican border. By the time he got to San Quentin, he was 42. 

As part of the prison’s restorative justice program, Rahsaan met a mother of two young men who’d been shot, one killed and the other critically injured. Her pain, her dignity, her ability to forgive her sons’ shooters prompted Rahsann to reflect on his own crime. “It made me feel like, damn, I did this to his mother,” he says. “I did this to my mother. You don’t do that to Black mothers. They go through so much.” 

 

ABOUT 2 MILLION PEOPLE ARE INCARCERATED IN THE UNITED States today, roughly eight times as many as in the early 1970s. Nearly half of them are Black, despite Black Americans representing only 13 percent of the U.S. population.

This disparity reflects what the legal scholar and author Michelle Alexander calls “the new Jim Crow,” an invisible system of oppression that has impeded Black men in particular since the days of slavery. In her book of the same title, Alexander unpacks 400 years of policies and social attitudes that have created a society in which one in three Black males will be incarcerated at some point in their lives, and where even those who have been paroled often face a lifetime of discrimination and disenfranchisement, like losing the right to vote. If you hit a wall every time you try to do something, are you really free? More than half of the people released from U.S. jails and prisons return within three years. 

After Rahsaan got out of Cayuga back in 1992, with a felony on his permanent record, he’d had trouble doing just about anything legit: renting an apartment, finding a decent job, securing a loan. Though he’d paid for the Mercedes SUV he drove to California, the lease was in his girlfriend’s name. Selling crack had provided financial solvency, and his success in New York made him feel invincible. One weed deal in California seemed easy enough. But he wasn’t naive. Rahsaan packed a gun, and if he felt he had to use it, he would. 

Today Rahsaan feels deep remorse for what transpired from there. But back then he saw no other way. “When we have a grievance, we hold court in the street,” he says of growing up in the Brownsville projects. “There’s no court of law, there’s no lawsuits.” Even while incarcerated, Rahsaan continued to meet threats with violence. But he also found that in prison, as in Brownsville, respect was temporary. “If you stab somebody, people leave you alone,” he says. “But you gotta keep doing it.” 

Not long after Rahsaan got to Calipatria, around 2003 or 2004, an older man named Samir pulled him aside. “Youngster, there’s nobody that you can beat up that’s gonna get you out of prison,” Rahsaan remembers Samir saying. “In fact, that’s gonna make it worse.” Rahsaan thought about Muhammad Ali, how he would get his opponents angry on purpose so they’d swing until they wore themselves out. He realized that when you’re angry, you’re not thinking clearly or moving effectively. You’re not responding; you’re reacting.

The next time Rahsaan saw Samir was in the yard at Calipatria. They were both doing laps, and the two men started to run together. Rahsaan told Samir about the impact his words had on him, how they helped him see he’d always let “somebody else’s hangup become my hangup, somebody else’s trauma become my trauma.” Each time that happened, he realized, he slid backward. 

Rahsaan began exploring various religions. He liked how the men in the Muslim prayer group at Calipatria encouraged him to think about his past, and the way they talked about God’s plan. He thought back to that day in April 2000 and came to believe that God would have gotten him out of that situation without a gun. “If I was meant to die, I was meant to die,” he says. “If I’m not, I’m not.” He started to see confrontations as tests. “I stopped feeding into the negativity and started passing the test, and I’ve been passing it consistently since,” he says. 

CLAIRE GELBART PLACED HER BELONGINGS IN A PLASTIC TRAY AND WALKED THROUGH THE METAL detectors at the visitors’ entrance at San Quentin. She crossed the Yard to the prison’s newsroom. It was late fall of 2017, and Gelbart had started volunteering with the San Quentin Journalism Guild, an initiative to teach incarcerated people the fundamentals of newswriting and interviewing techniques.

Historically infamous for housing people like Charles Manson and Sirhan Sirhan, the man convicted of killing Robert Kennedy, and for having the only death row for men in California, San Quentin has in recent years instituted reforms. By the time Rahsaan arrived, the facility was offering dozens of programs, had an onsite college, and granted some of the individuals housed there considerable freedom of movement. Hundreds of volunteers pass through its gates every year.

Rahsaan was in the newsroom working on a story for the San Quentin News, where he was a staff writer. Gelbart and Rahsaan started to chat, and within minutes they were bonding over running. They talked about the San Quentin Marathon—in which Rahsaan was proud to have placed 13th out of 13 finishers in 6 hours, 12 minutes, and 23 seconds—and Gelbart’s plans to run her first half marathon that spring. “It was like I lost all sense of place and time,” Gelbart says, “like I could have been in a coffee shop in San Francisco talking to someone.” 

In weekly visits over the next year, Gelbart and Rahsaan talked about their families, their hopes for the future. Gelbart had just graduated from Tufts University with dreams of being a writer. Rahsaan was working toward a college degree, writing for numerous outlets like the Marshall Project and Vice, and learning about podcasting and documentary filmmaking. In 2019, when Gelbart was offered a job in New York, she told Rahsaan she felt torn about leaving—they’d become close friends. They made a pact that if Rahsaan ever got out of prison, they would run the New York City Marathon together. “We couldn’t think of a better thing to celebrate him coming home,” Gelbart says.

When Rahsaan was sentenced, he still had hope for a successful appeal. But when his appeal was denied in 2011, he realized he was never going home. His parole date was set for 2085. 

At the time, though, the political appetite for mass incarceration was starting to shift. Gray Davis, who was governor of California from 1999 to 2003, had never granted a single pardon; and his successor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, granted only 15. Then, between 2011 and 2019, Governor Jerry Brown pardoned or commuted the sentences of more than 1,300 people. Studies show that the recidivism rate among those who had been serving life sentences is less than 5 percent in a number of states, including California. And according to the U.S. Bureau of Justice, 98 percent of people convicted of homicide who are released from prison do not commit another murder. 

In the fall of 2018, Governor Brown approved Rahsaan for commutation, but it was now up to his successor, Gavin Newsom, to follow through. And until a release date was set, there were no guarantees. 

Back at San Quentin, Rahsaan was busier than ever. He was working on his fourth film, Friendly Signs, a documentary funded by the Marshall Project and the Sundance Institute; it was about fellow 1,000 Mile Club member Tommy Lee Wickerd’s efforts to start an ASL program to aid a group of deaf and hard-of-hearing newcomers to the prison. He had recently been named chair of the San Quentin satellite chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and became a cohost and coproducer of Ear Hustle, a popular podcast about life in San Quentin that in 2020 was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize. He was also sketching out plans for a nonprofit, Empowerment Ave, to build connections to the outside world for other incarcerated writers and artists and to advocate for fair compensation. And after five years, he was just one history class away from getting his associate’s degree from Mount Tamalpais College.

 

In January 2020, Rahsaan began his final semester, eager to don his cap and gown that June. MTC always organized a festive graduation ceremony in the prison’s visiting room, inviting families, friends, students, and staff. Then COVID-19 hit. Lockdown. All classes canceled until further notice. The 1,000 Mile Club suspended workouts and races as well, its 70-plus members scattering throughout the prison, not sure when or if they’d ever get together again. Covid would officially kill 28 people at San Quentin and make many more very ill. College graduation, let alone races in the Yard and parole hearings, would have to wait.

For the first time since arriving at San Quentin, Rahsaan felt claustrophobic in his 4-by-10-foot cell. He couldn’t work on his films or go to the newsroom. All he could do was read and write, alone. After George Floyd was murdered that May, Rahsaan fell into a depression. He remembered something Chadwick Boseman had said in a 2018 commencement speech at Howard University: “Remember, the struggles along the way shape you for your purpose.”

Rahsaan decided his purpose was to write. Outside journalists couldn’t enter the prison during the pandemic, but their publications were thirsty for prison Covid stories. Rahsaan saw an opportunity. Between June 2020 and February 2023, he published 42 articles, and thanks to Empowerment Ave, he knew what those articles were worth. As a writer for the San Quentin News, Rahsaan earned $36 a month; those 42 articles for external publications netted him $30,000.

DOZENS OF PEOPLE GATHERED OUTSIDE SAN QUENTIN’S GATES. IT WAS A FRIGID MORNING IN EARLY February 2023; the sun hadn’t yet risen. Among those assembled were two cofounders of Ear Hustle, Earlonne Woods and Nigel Poor, along with executive producer Bruce Wallace, recording equipment in hand. A procession of white vans, each carrying one or two men, arrived one by one. After three or four hours, the air had warmed to a balmy 60 degrees. Another van pulled up, Rahsaan got out, and the crowd erupted. Nearly 23 years after he’d been sentenced to 55 years to life, Rahsaan Thomas had been released. 

Rahsaan got into a Hyundai sedan and was soon headed away from San Quentin. Wallace sat in the back, recording Rahsaan seeing water, mountains, and a highway from the front seat of a car for the first time in decades. “I feel like I’m escaping,” he joked. “Is anybody chasing us? This is amazing. This is crazy.” 

Rahsaan called his mom, who wasn’t able to make it to California for his release.

“Hey, Ma, it’s really real,” he said, breathless with joy. “I’m free. No more handcuffs.”

Jacqueline’s exuberance can be heard in her laughter, her curiosity about what his first meal would be (steak and French toast), and her motherly rebuke of his plan to buy a Tesla.

“You ain’t been drivin’ in a while and I know you ain’t the best driver in the world,” she teased. 

Rahsaan moved into a transitional house in Oakland and wasted no time adjusting to life in the 21st century. He got an iPhone, and a friend gave him a crash course in protecting himself from cyberattacks. He’s almost fallen for a few. “There’s some rough hoods on the internet,” he jokes. Earlonne Woods, who was paroled in 2018, and others taught Rahsaan how to use social media. He opened Instagram and Facebook accounts and worked on his own website, rahsaannewyorkthomas.com, which a friend had built for him while he was in San Quentin to promote his creative projects, Empowerment Ave, and even a line of merch. 

Despite all the excitement and chaos, Rahsaan never forgot about the pact he’d made with Claire Gelbart. He found her on Facebook and sent a simple, two-line message: “Start training. We have a marathon to run.” 

IN LATE MARCH, SIX WEEKS AFTER HIS RELEASE, RAHSAAN FLEW TO NEW YORK CITY. IT WAS THE FIRST time he’d been home in nearly a quarter century, and he hadn’t flown since before 9/11. The security protocols at SFO reminded him more of prison than of the last time he’d been in an airport. Actually, “it was worse than prison,” he jokes. They confiscated his jar of honey.

The changes to his home borough were no less surprising. He’d come to New York to take work meetings, see family, and catch a Nets game at Barclays Center in downtown Brooklyn. Rahsaan barely recognized Barclays; it had been a U-Haul lot the last time he was there, and skyscrapers now towered over Fulton Mall, where he used to buy Starter jackets at Dr. Jay’s and Big Daddy Kane tapes at the Wiz. 

He met up with Gelbart on Flatbush Avenue, where come November they’d be just hitting mile 8 of the New York City Marathon. They hadn’t been allowed to touch at San Quentin and weren’t sure how to greet each other on the outside. “It was weird at first, because I was like, do we hug?” Gelbart recalls. But the awkwardness faded fast, and as they walked, Gelbart saw a different side of Rahsaan. “He seemed so much more relaxed,” she says. “Much happier, much lighter.” 

Back in 1985, just a few blocks from where Rahsaan and Gelbart walked now, Rahsaan, his brother Aikeem, and his friend Troy had been on their way home from the Fulton Mall when out of nowhere, about a dozen guys rolled up on them. They started beating on Troy and, for a minute, left Rahsaan and Aikeem alone. Images of his father, throat slashed, flashed through Rahsaan’s mind. He pulled a rug cutter out of his pocket, ran to the smallest guy in the group, and jabbed it into the back of his head. “They looked at me like they were gonna kill me,” Rahsaan says. He threw the blade to the ground, slid his hand inside his coat, and held it there. “Y’all wanna play? We gonna play,” he said. The bluff worked; the guys ran. It was the first time Rahsaan had ever stabbed someone. 

Change sometimes occurs gradually, and then all at once. That was a different Brooklyn, a different Rahsaan. He began to confront his own violence when he had met Samir some 20 years before, and continued to do so through his studies, his faith, his work in restorative justice, and his own writing. But the origin of his tendency toward violence, the death of his father, remained firmly rooted in his psyche. Then, in 2017, Rahsaan spoke for the first time with his estranged half-brother, Carl. 

Carl had read Rahsaan’s work, and asked why he always said their father had been murdered.

“That’s what grandma told me,” Rahsaan said. 

“But he wasn’t murdered,” Carl told him. “He killed himself.” 

And it wasn’t in 1982, as Rahsaan remembered, but in 1985—the same year Rahsaan started carrying blades. 

Rahsaan didn’t believe it until Carl sent him a copy of the suicide note. Even then he remained in shock. “To think I justified violence, treating robbery like a life-or-death situation, over a lie,” he says. Jacqueline was as surprised as Rahsaan to learn the truth of Carlos’s death. He never seemed troubled or depressed to her when they were together, but, “You can’t really read people,” she says. “You don’t know.” 

Rahsaan still can’t account for why his grandmother told him what she did, nor for the discrepancy between his memory and the facts. Regardless, after more than 30 years, Rahsaan was finally able to let go of the one trauma that had calcified into an instinct to kill or be killed. And he has no intention of dredging it back up. 

THE FASTEST RUNNER IN THE 1,000 MILE CLUB’S HISTORY IS MARKELLE “THE GAZELLE” TAYLOR, WHO was paroled in 2019 and went on to run 2:52 in the 2022 Boston Marathon. Rahsaan is the slowest. At San Quentin, he was often the last one to finish a race, but that wasn’t the point—he liked being out in the Yard with the guys. It gave him a sense of belonging, and not just to the 1,000 Mile Club, but to the running community beyond.   

Like every other 1,000 Miler who gets released from San Quentin, Rahsaan had a rite of passage to conquer. On Sunday morning, May 7, 2023, he met a handful of other runners from the club and a few volunteer coaches in Mill Valley. After a decade of gazing up at Mount Tam from the Yard as he completed one 400-meter loop after another, Rahsaan was finally about to run over the mountain all the way to the Pacific. 

The runners did a few final stretches, wished one another luck, and started to run. Almost immediately they had to climb some 700 stairs, many made of stone, and the course only got more treacherous from there. Uneven footing, singletrack paths, and 2,000-plus feet of elevation all conspire to make the Dipsea notoriously difficult. The giant redwoods and Douglas firs along the course were lost on Rahsaan; he never took his eyes off the ground. 

One of the coaches, Jim Maloney, stayed with Rahsaan as his guide, and to help him if he slipped or fell. Markelle Taylor came too, but said he’d meet them in Stinson Beach. He knew how dangerous the trail was, Rahsaan says, and had vowed to never run it again. After his own initiation, Rahsaan decided that he, too, would never do it again. “I’ve been shot at,” he says. “I’ve been in physical danger. I don’t want to revisit danger.”

Rahsaan now logs most of his miles on a treadmill because of knee issues, but on occasion he ventures out to do the 3.4-mile loop around Lake Merritt, a lagoon in the heart of Oakland. He decided to use the New York City Marathon to raise money for Empowerment Ave, and to accept donations until he crossed the finish line in Central Park. Gelbart wrote a training plan for him and got him a new pair of shoes. In prison, Rahsaan had run in the same pair of Adidas for three years, and he was excited to learn about the maximalist shoe movement. Gelbart tried to interest him in Hokas, but Rahsaan thought they were ugly. He wanted Nikes. 

In June, Gelbart went to the Bay Area to visit family and met Rahsaan for a six-mile run around Lake Merritt. As they looped the lake at a conversational 11:30 pace, they talked about work, relationships, and, of course, the New York City Marathon. Rahsaan was disappointed to learn that he would probably not be the last person to finish. (He still holds the record for the slowest San Quentin Marathon in its 15-year history, and he hopes no one ever beats it.) Besides, the more time he spent on the course in New York, he figured, the longer people would have to donate to Empowerment Ave.

On Sunday, November 5, Gelbart and Rahsaan made their way to Staten Island. Waiting at the base of the Verrazzano Bridge, Gelbart recorded Rahsaan singing along to Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York” for Instagram, and captioned the video “back where he belongs.” They documented much of their race as they floated through Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, and the Bronx: greeting friends along the course, enjoying a lollipop on the Queensboro Bridge, beaming even as their pace slowed from 11:45 per mile for the first 5K to 16:30 for the last. Rahsaan finished in six hours, 26 minutes, and 21 seconds, placing 48,221 out of 51,290 runners. The next day, he sent me a text: “The marathon was pure love.” What’s more, he received more than $15,000 in donations for Empowerment Ave, enough to start a writing program at a women’s prison in Texas. 

Every runner has an origin story. Every runner finds a reason to keep going. At Calipatria, Rahsaan liked to joke that he ran because if an earthquake ever came along and brought down the prison’s walls, he needed to be in shape so he could escape and run to Mexico. In San Quentin, he ran for the community. Today he has a new reason. “I heard that running extends your life by 10 years,” he says, “and I gave away 22.” Now that he’s out, his motivation has never been higher. He has so much to do. 

(06/09/2024) Views: 287 ⚡AMP
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New York Mini 10k 2024: Senbere Teferi wins third consecutive race

Senbere Teferi, a two-time Olympian and two-time World Championships medalist from Ethiopia, won her third consecutive Mastercard New York Mini 10K in a time of 30:47, just shy of the record she set in 2023 with a time of 30:12.

ABC 7 New York provided live streaming coverage of the New York Road Runners' Mini 10K race in Central Park with more than 9,000 runners expected this year.

Teferi also won 2019 UAE Healthy Kidney 10K in New York and the 2022 United Airlines NYC Half, which was the second-fastest time in the history of the event.

"It is such a special race because there is a bond that exists with thousands of women also running. Even though we are not related, I feel supported like we are all sisters in running," Teferi said prior to today's race.

2022 TCS New York City Marathon champion Sharon Lokedi finished second with a time of 31:04.

Lokedi was also the runner-up at both the 2022 Mastercard New York Mini 10K and the 2024 Boston Marathon.

"Although I have only run the Mini once before, I felt embraced by the many thousands of women who ran the race before me, and hope to inspire the many thousands more who will come after me," Lokedi said prior to today's race. "It's an awesome thing, how women from so many different places and life experiences can come and feel connected to each other through the simple act of running a loop in Central Park."

Sheila Chepkirui finished third (31:09) while American Amanda Vestri finished fourth (31:17).

The 2024 Mastercard New York Mini 10K will feature four past champions, five Paris 2024 Olympians, and seven of the top 10 finishers from the 2024 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.

The 52nd running of the event also featured members of 2024 U.S. Olympic Women's Marathon Team - Fiona O'Keeffe, Emily Sisson, and Dakotah Lindwurm.

New York Road Runners started the Mini 10K in 1972 as the first women-only road race, known then as the Crazylegs Mini Marathon. Seventy-two women finished the first race, and three weeks later Title IX was signed into law, guaranteeing girls and women the right to participate in school sports and creating new opportunities for generations of female athletes.

The Mastercard New York Mini 10K is now one of nonprofit NYRR's 60 adult and youth races annually and has garnered more than 200,000 total finishers to date.

The 2024 Mastercard New York Mini 10K offered $39,500 in total prize money, including $10,000 to the winner of the open division. Mastercard served as title sponsor of the event for the fourth year, and as part of its ongoing partnership with NYRR will also serve as the presenting sponsor of professional women's athlete field.

Eyewitness News provided live updates from the race and streamed the event live on abc7NY. An all-women team of WABC sports anchor Sam Ryan and meteorologist Dani Beckstrom, along with U.S. Olympian Carrie Tollefson, host of the Ali on the Run Show podcast Ali Feller, and running advocate Jacqui Moore anchored the coverage.

(06/08/2024) Views: 293 ⚡AMP
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New York Mini 10K

New York Mini 10K

Join us for the NYRR New York Mini 10K, a race just for women. This race was made for you! It’s the world’s original women-only road race, founded in 1972 and named for the miniskirt, and it empowers women of all ages and fitness levels to be active and to look and feel great on the run. Every woman who...

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Boston Athletic Association unveils revised unicorn logo for Boston Marathon

On the occasion of Global Running Day, the Boston Athletic Association is unveiling a revised version of its iconic unicorn logo.

B.A.A. officials said the new logo is intended to be a forward-facing and athletic symbol of the organization's future.

"Between our mass participatory events and our support of philanthropic organizations, we aim to spearhead continued growth and enthusiasm around the sport of running while supporting those around us," said Jack Fleming, B.A.A. President and CEO.

Elements of the new logo include:

Facing forward, the emblem eyes the future and many miles ahead.

Spike’s jawline is enhanced, demonstrating the athletic and gritty nature of Boston.

With alert and focused eyes, Spike is determined to conquer the challenging Boston Marathon course.

Pointing northeast, Spike’s horn represents the direction of the Marathon route on a compass from start to finish.

The flowing mane shows swift movement on the pursuit of a healthy and active lifestyle – directly tied to the B.A.A.’s mission.

The new base of the unicorn showcases two sides coming together, the merging of the B.A.A.’s history and future.

Within Spike’s neck is a gap between two lines, symbolic of breaking the champion’s tape at the finish line.

13 points are on the mane, one for each decade of B.A.A. heritage.

B.A.A. officials said the finish line on Boylston Street is being repainted Wednesday to feature the updated logo.

WCVB is the official broadcast partner of the B.A.A. and the Boston Marathon.

(06/05/2024) Views: 325 ⚡AMP
by Phil Tenser
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Registration dates for the 129th Boston Marathon announced

The Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) announced Monday that registration for the 129th Boston Marathon will take place over five days, from Sept. 9–13 at www.baa.org

The field size for the 129th Boston Marathon, to be run on Monday, April 21, 2025, will be 30,000 participants.

Qualifier registration will open on Sept. 9 at 10 a.m. and will close on Sept. 13, at 5 p.m. Any athlete who has achieved a currently valid Boston Marathon qualifying time may submit a registration application during registration week.

Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on Sept. 13. The 2025 Boston Marathon qualifying window began on Sept. 1, 2023, and will close at 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 13. If space is still available after the conclusion of registration week, registration will re-open on Sept. 16.

Qualifying standards across all divisions will remain the same as they were for the 2024 Boston Marathon.

(06/04/2024) Views: 266 ⚡AMP
by Andrew Clark
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Lokedi, Kiplagat and Chepkirui Headline New York Mini 10K Run

Three Kenyans headlined by Boston Marathon second finisher Sharon Lokedi are among the top athletes entered for the 2024 New York Mini 10K set for Saturday, June 8.

Veteran and consistent Edna Kiplagat as well as Sheila Chepkirui, who finished second at the 2023 Berlin Marathon.

The race also features four past champions, five Paris 2024 Olympians, and seven of the top 10 finishers from the 2024 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.

Produced by the New York City-based nonprofit for more than five decades, the 52nd running of the event will also be competed by event-record holder and two-time race champion Senbere Teferi and two-time race champion Sara Hall, who will join the previously announced 2024 U.S. Olympic Women’s Marathon Team – Fiona O’Keeffe, Emily Sisson, and Dakotah Lindwurm – at the start line in Central Park.

Teferi, a two-time Olympian and two-time World Championships medalist from Ethiopia, has won the last two editions of the New York Mini 10K, breaking the event record in 2023 with a time of 30:12.

Also, in New York, she won 2019 UAE Healthy Kidney 10K and in her 2022 United Airlines NYC Half victory recorded the second-fastest time in the history of the event.

“I’m very happy to return to New York for the Mini, and I will try my best to win the race for a third time,” Teferi said. “It is such a special race because there is a bond that exists with thousands of women also running. Even though we are not related, I feel supported like we are all sisters in running.”

Hall is a 10-time U.S. national champion who won the New York Mini 10K in 2021 and 2022. Earlier this year, she finished fifth at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials. She is also the former national record-holder in the half marathon and the only athlete in history to have won the New York Mini 10K, New Balance 5th Avenue Mile, and Abbott Dash to the Finish Line 5K in New York.

“It’s very cool that this year’s New York Mini 10K falls on the fifth anniversary of my first win at the race, and I can’t think of any place I’d rather be that weekend,” said Hall.

(05/30/2024) Views: 292 ⚡AMP
by Capital Sport
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New York Mini 10K

New York Mini 10K

Join us for the NYRR New York Mini 10K, a race just for women. This race was made for you! It’s the world’s original women-only road race, founded in 1972 and named for the miniskirt, and it empowers women of all ages and fitness levels to be active and to look and feel great on the run. Every woman who...

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‘You Stole!’ Running World Divided Over ‘Bandits’ Who Crash Races

The Miami Marathon is contemplating facial-recognition tech to curtail interlopers; at a popular San Francisco race, bandits, who have included Gov. Gavin Newsom, are gods.

During the 2023 Miami Marathon, Frankie Ruiz, an event founder, spotted a bandit and pounced. He interrogated a runner wearing a comically bad counterfeit racing bib pinned to her shirt. She claimed she and pals had paid for entry to the race, and were told to print out their bibs at home.

“Who did you give the money to?” Ruiz asked

“My friend,” the woman answered vaguely. “That’s not a friend,” Ruiz replied. “You’re not registered.” Her run was done. She left the course, just 300 meters from the finish line.

As the public face of the marathon’s surveillance group, aka the “bandit busters,” Ruiz posts videos of his team catching bandits—runners who crash events without signing up. 

I n “bandit reel” videos, he’ll intercept interlopers or his crew will strip medals from bibless finishers. Excuses fly: “It fell off, bro, it fell off.” One man unzips his jacket, feigning surprise at the missing bib. Caught red-handed, many sheepishly surrender their medals without a word. 

As running booms, some races burst at the seams. Sold-out events and increasing fees, which can top $150, spur some bandits to sneak in, while others simply see no harm in crashing the course. 

Last month, influencer Alexa Curtis bandited a sold-out New York City race, like a party she wasn’t invited to.

“I just ran 13.1 miles for the Brooklyn half marathon at a 7.43 minute pace,” she humblebragged in a tearfully triumphant Instagram message, mentioning her “fearless” journey. “I didn’t sign up for this race. I just asked the security where it started and where it ended and jumped in.” She didn’t know what was about to hit her.

To critics, Curtis committed the cardinal bandit sin: crossing the finish line.

“You are a bandit and you stole from this race,” one commenter wrote. A defender retorted, “if there was a line that was marked as ‘finish line’ and she walked over it, that doesn’t cost anything to anyone.”

C urtis initially was confused. “I literally googled, ‘What is a bandit,’” she said in an interview.

In the running world, among peers and in online forums, the bandit debate rages like a nasty blister. Are bandits happy runners harmlessly enjoying public roads? Or narcissistic resource-hogs using up porta potties and guzzling ill-gotten Gatorade?

Race banditry has a rich history. Bobbi Gibb, the first woman to run the Boston Marathon, crashed it in 1966 when women couldn’t register. 

Tolerance varies. The Miami Marathon, a qualifier for Boston and other prestige races, takes a hard line. But San Francisco’s anarchic Bay to Breakers 12k? That’s a different story altogether.

If race banditry had an Olympics, it would be this race. California Gov. Gavin Newsom bandited Bay to Breakers in 2010. Organizers reported 21,000 registered participants this year, but anticipated as many as 10,000 additional crashers.

‘The salmon’

“Bandits are a part of Bay to Breakers,” said race director Kyle Meyers. “Do they all finish? No.”

The most notable bandits are “the salmon,” die-hard mostly-unregistered runners who show up yearly, dress as salmon, and run in the wrong direction. This past Sunday, a dozen plunged into a crowd of about 30,000 participants, heading not to the finish line but to the Chieftain, an Irish pub near the start.

The lead runner, who gave his name as Uncle Milty, wore four old race bibs. “One of those was official,” he said when asked. “The rest were ones we made up.” As he waited to jump into the race, just a block from San Francisco’s famous Painted Ladies Victorians, he spied a fifth bib on the ground, and nonchalantly pinned it on.

After consulting with Michelle Kaye Fitzgerald, a legitimately registered salmon, to ensure the serious runners had passed, Milty rallied his school into Hayes Street. They approached advancing racers, shouting: “Spawn! Spawn! You’re going the wrong way!”

While Meyers says bandits shouldn’t cross the finish line, race staff happily handed cups of water to salmon along the course, and other amenities treasured by runners were open to bandits. “We probably have the most portable restrooms of any 12k on the planet,” Meyers said, with a hint of pride.

The salmon are the brainchild of Rob Schmitt, who hatched the idea more than 30 years ago after discussing salmon-spawning habits with his girlfriend. He repurposed old carpet into salmon costumes, and then relayed his plans to friends at the Cacophony Society, an underground group known for pranks and chaotic events. 

To run with the salmon, as this reporter discovered Sunday, is to experience many things at once. Setting off downhill with some trepidation, you view thousands of participants, flowing toward you for block after block, like sparkly crawling ants, and feel an initial grim sense of awe at the thought of navigating through them. But that fades as passing racers greet you with glee. 

You high-five 125 sweaty hands in a single block, including crabs, cows, bananas, banana slugs, furbys, Cybertrucks and nudists. You stop and dance every time there is music, especially if there are bubbles. You scream in mock terror when a bear runs by.

Meanwhile, in Miami

Frankie Ruiz began wrangling bandits a decade ago when the Miami Marathon ran out of medals for nearly 1,500 finishers, despite having ordered enough. 

Ruiz is now known—and revered by some—for his bandit videos. He’s even nabbed bandits at Thanksgiving turkey trots. “I’ve had entire families showing up without paying.”

The Miami Marathon now uses holograms on bibs to prevent counterfeiting, and Ruiz is looking into facial-recognition technology.

What does he think of San Francisco’s salmon-suited bandits? “I’m glad you guys didn’t show up to my race,” he said. “I don’t know what I’d do.”

(05/26/2024) Views: 245 ⚡AMP
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Why women-only run clubs are dominating the scene

Amid 2024’s run-mania, with races frequently selling out across Canada, female-exclusive run clubs are gaining momentum. In honour of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, we’re discussing how the sport has evolved, with women’s run clubs paving the way for female runners to feel seen, safe and empowered. 

Run clubs are in

Women’s running has been on the rise since the ’70s, when recreational jogging first became popular. However, the recent surge in gender-exclusive running clubs is a significant development. According to Reddit, this is not just a passing trend. Women’s run clubs have become especially attractive to women who’ve experienced gender-based discrimination or sexual harassment in mixed-gender clubs.“As a woman that has participated in many mixed-company athletic pursuits, [I feel that] men often react poorly to women being skilled or successful in a sport, in addition to the usual perils of being harassed or bothered,” said one Reddit user. Another pointed out that “this obnoxious masculinity is woven into the history of run clubs.”

Confronting patriarchy

Running, like many other sports, was designed by men for men. Women in France began challenging this norm in 1903 with a race in Paris known as “The Race of the Midinettes” (a 12-km walking race for seamstresses or assistants in the Paris fashion industry). While the French press called these midinettes derogatory names like “streetwalkers” (sex workers), feminist scholars such as Florys Castan-Vicenet (in her 2023 report in Front Sports Act Living) strongly argue otherwise, considering them pioneers. Amsterdam’s 1928 Olympic Games marked a revolutionary moment in women’s running. For the first time, female runners were invited to participate in the 800m. This feat was short-lived however, as the event was immediately banned, and would remain so until 1960. In 1967, Kathrine Switzer became the first woman to run the Boston Marathon with an official bib (though she was physically assaulted by the race manager for doing so).

“Female runners were spearheading a revolution, changing common beliefs about the limits of women’s physical endurance,” shared Louise Wood in her story “Into the Boys’ Club”. By the turn of the 21st century, feminist movements were changing the landscape of women’s running.

Women supporting women

During this time, feminist thinkers like Sara Ahmed confronted topics like gender inequity and female objectification that commonly deterred women from joining the sport. “What I hate is, for example when someone comments on your run,” wrote Ahmed in her 2000 novel Strange Encounters. “They mean it as a compliment, but for me, it just emphasizes, ‘I don’t expect this from someone who looks like you.'” As female runners and feminists continued to reshape the narrative, gender-exclusive run clubs emerged, reflecting a significant rise in women’s participation in running. A report by International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health says between 1953 and 2017, sex differences decreased dramatically in 100-mile ultras worldwide. By 2020, according to RunRpeat, 57 per cent of Canadian runners and 23 per cent of ultramarathon participants identified as female, marking a significant increase.

Strength in numbers

Today, women are choosing to forgo late nights on the town for a good night’s sleep and morning run club with the girls. These clubs are not just about running; they are about women sprinting together through life’s challenges, forming strong bonds and a sense of community that extends beyond the club. Women-only run clubs across Canada, such as Switzer’s 261 Fearless (which has chapters in 14 countries; the Canadian chapter is in Toronto), and runs celebrating women, like Lululemon’s Further 6-day ultra (based in Vancouver), are surging in popularity. Still, in a 2023 study by Adidas, it was reported that 38 per cent of women have experienced physical or verbal harassment while running, with more than half receiving unwanted attention (56 per cent), sexist comments or unwanted sexual attention (55 per cent). According to a 2024 study by Asics, a startling number of Canadian women have cited “lack of safe spaces” as a barrier to running. 

Chix Run (located in Toronto and Calgary) has been dedicated to offering women this safe space. Since founding the club four years ago, Amanda Richardson, 42, has observed a significant improvement in the sport’s female representation. “Toronto run clubs used to be focused just on performance, but now it’s all about community, where women are out there connecting on topics like motherhood, marriage or their love of coffee—a post-run highlight.”

The club strives to take the emphasis off competing and winning to make running more about having fun, being active with other women and creating friendships. “Many people have noticed running is advertised as a place to date,” Richardson laughs. “Turning up to a running club where you know it’s all women there, free to say what you want to say, be who you want to be, they don’t have to worry about how they look; there is no hidden agenda.”

Girlhood and good vibes

According to Strava, women under 25 are the fastest-growing community using the app today, promising a more balanced and inclusive future for running. The Girls run the 6ix run club has quickly become a regular hotspot for young female runners in Toronto. The club was founded in December by Jill Amirault, 26, and Claire Milburn, 23, and already has 5,000 Instagram followers.“I think for someone new to running, it can be really intimidating to go to a gender-diverse run club, because men are typically competitive,” says Amirault. “Some women need that safe space, similar to a gym with a ‘women only’ section.” The club embarks once a week on a 6-km route through the city, in which its members can be found swapping stories about dating misadventures and connecting about girlhood. For a long time, there was a lack of female-exclusive run clubs in Toronto, says Amirault.

“Now, with more female run clubs and influencers, people are certainly beginning to notice that this is an environment where women can succeed,” says Amirault. “Pace doesn’t matter; what’s important is that we motivate, connect and celebrate our womanhood.”

(05/26/2024) Views: 256 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Boston Athletic Association names field of professional athletes for 2024 Boston 10K

The Boston Athletic Association announced Wednesday the professional fields for the 2024 Boston 10K, which will be held on Sunday, June 23.

American Olympic marathoners Emily Sisson and Clayton Young will race the new and enhanced course that features scenic views of the Charles River and finishes at Boston Common.

Making his American road racing debut is world-number one ranked road racer Sabastian Sawe, of Kenya, and returning is defending Boston Half champion Abel Kipchumba. 2024 Boston Marathon runner-up Sharon Lokedi and two-time Boston Marathon champion Edna Kiplagat headline the women’s field, while Para Athletics Division winners Marko Cheseto Lemtukei, Atsbha Gebremeskel and Kelly Bruno will compete two months after finishing April’s marathon.

“The Boston 10K presented by Brigham and Women’s Hospital kicks off the summer running season,” said Jack Fleming, the president and CEO of the B.A.A. “We’re eager for participants to take on the new course, which will run along the Charles River, over two historic bridges, and across the Boston Marathon finish line before finishing at Boston Common. Leading the way are some of the fastest and most accomplished athletes to race 6.2 miles, some doing so as a tune-up for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

Sisson and Young locked up their spots on Team USA’s Marathon roster in February, both finishing second in their respective women’s and men’s races. Sisson returns to the Boston 10K after placing second in 2022 and fourth in 2023, while this will be Young’s first B.A.A. event.

From Kenya are Lokedi and Kiplagat, racing in Boston two months after placing on the podium at the 128th Boston Marathon presented by Bank of America. Lokedi is currently the alternate for Kenya’s Olympic Marathon team, and Kiplagat has twice finished runner-up at the Boston 10K. Joining them among international competitors are last year’s Boston 10K second-place finisher Stacy Ndiwa (Kenya), Cherry Blossom 10 Mile champion Sarah Chelangat (Uganda), 2022 Beach to Beacon 10K winner Fantaye Belayneh (Ethiopia), and 2021 Olympic 10,000m sixth place finisher Irine Cheptai (Kenya). Mercy Chelangat, an NCAA Cross Country and 10,000m champion from Kenya, and 2022 Boston Half third-place finisher Hiwot Gebremaryam (Ethiopia) are entered as well.

From the USA is 2015 Boston Marathon champion Caroline Rotich, B.A.A. High-performance team member Abbey Wheeler, 2024 USA 15K third-place finisher Emily Durgin and former American 10,000m record holder and U.S. Olympian Molly Huddle.

The men’s international field is headlined by Sabastian Sawe, the top-ranked road racer in the world and the 2023 World Athletics Half Marathon champion. Sawe, of Kenya, has run 26:49 — fastest in the field — and will be making his American road racing debut.

From Kenya are Boston Half reigning champion Abel Kipchumba, 2023 Falmouth Road Race winner Wesley Kiptoo, and 17-time NCAA champion Edward Cheserek. Also from Kenya is Alex Masai, third in 2023.

Beyond Clayton Young, American men on the starting line will include recent USA 25K national champion Diego Estrada, 1:00:02 half marathoner Teshome Mekonen, and B.A.A. High Performance Team member Josh Kalapos. Kalapos finished 17th at February’s U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Marathon.

Hermin Garic returns in the men’s wheelchair division as a two-time defending champion, timing 22:44 last year. He’s joined by Michelle Wheeler, a top entrant in the women’s wheelchair division, who was runner-up last year.

In the Para Athletics Divisions, Brian Reynolds — who set a world record 41:09 at last year’s event for T61-64 Classification (lower-limb impairment) is back with sights on the podium again. Marko Cheseto Lemtukei and Kelly Bruno — each of whom won the T62-T64/T42-T44 Division at the 128th Boston Marathon — will compete, as well as Atsbha Gebremeskel, the two-time Boston Marathon T46 (upper limb impairment) Para Athletics Division champion. More than 25 athletes will participate in the Para Athletics Divisions and Adaptive Programs at this year’s Boston 10K. Nearly $20,000 — an event record — in prize awards are available to top-three finishers across Vision Impairment (T11-T13), Upper Limb Impairment (T45-T46), Lower Limb Impairment (T61-T64), Coordination Impairment (T35-T38) classifications.

The Boston 10K presented by Brigham and Women’s Hospital will be the second event of the 2024 B.A.A. Distance Medley, a year-long series featuring the Boston 5K (April), Boston 10K (June), and Boston Half (November). While open registration is sold out, limited spots are still available through Brigham and Women’s fundraising team.

(05/23/2024) Views: 398 ⚡AMP
by Jamy Pombo Sesselman
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B.A.A. 10K

B.A.A. 10K

The 6.2-mile course is a scenic tour through Boston's Back Bay. Notable neighborhoods and attractions include the legendary Bull and Finch Pub, after which the television series "Cheers" was developed, the campus of Boston University, and trendy Kenmore Square. ...

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Why Lokedi is the next big thing in marathon running

The 2022 New York City Marathon champion Sharon Lokedi has every reason to stroll the streets with her chin up.

Lokedi, 30, is among the celebrated Kenyan athletes selected by Athletics Kenya for this year's Olympic Games in Paris, France.

She was named as a reserve athlete in the stellar roster of four female Kenyan marathoners tasked with flying the nation's flag in the French capital.

Lokedi was named alongside Tokyo 2020 Olympics marathon champion Peres Jepchirchir, two-time Boston Marathon champion Hellen Obiri and Olympic silver medalist Brigid Kosgei.

The older daughter of Jonathan and Rose Lokedi, Sharon has three younger siblings Ceddellah Chelimo, Lince Cheptoo and Mercy Chemutai.

Born on March 10, 1994, Lokedi began to hone her skills at Kapkenda Girls’ School, where she set records in the 3000m and 5000m races yet to be broken to date.

So good was she that in 2013, she scooped the school's Athlete of the Year gong.

Upon completing high school,  she was recruited to the University of Kansas (KU), where she studied nursing and business.

She began competing first in collegiate track and cross country in 2015. Lokedi's desire to travel overseas for college began in high school.

It took her some time to think about it, deciding whether to stay in Kenya with her family or travel to the so-called land of milk and honey.

"I was encouraged to try it by a friend of mine who had applied to study in the United States," Lokedi said. 

 "When I saw images of people in America, I knew it was my dream and was determined to go there," she added.

Meanwhile, Lokedi was unsure if she wanted to continue with athletics and even at some point considered dumping the sport to concentrate on her studies. 

 However, the passion she had already developed for athletics drove her back to the sport. She began attending training with sights firmly set on a collegiate athletic career in the USA.

"Running is ingrained in you when you're accustomed to it, so you want to keep doing it," Lokedi stated.

"I was disappointed that I wasn't running and I knew I needed to return to my favourite activity.

"With her mind already set on pursuing an education abroad, Lokedi rummaged through online platforms to identify an appropriate institution online.

"I was unsure about the precise institution I should join. I would go online, go through images and try to get a sense of the various academic offerings and running programmes that each school had to offer. Ultimately, there was simply something peculiar about Kansas. She would exchange emails and make multiple phone conversations with the coaches."

She added: "The instructors were pleasant. They would inquire about my training regimen and follow up with me to see how I was doing. It was obvious that you could relate to these people on a deep level.

"In the meanwhile, her friends alerted her to Kansas' chilly weather. "People would occasionally comment on how chilly the US was, but I had already made up my mind. I had never seen snow before since Kenya doesn't have a winter. It was January and chilly when I arrived."

She needed some time to get used to the Midwest's erratic weather.

"One day, it was so sunny outside that I forgot to put on my gloves when we went to practice in the morning. But I was unable to use my hands at all once I stopped jogging. I attempted to reheat them but was unsuccessful. I broke down in tears and felt like travelling back home. I eventually got used to it," she said. 

 Her trip to Kansas was fraught with difficulties. She flew from Nairobi to Chicago hoping to catch a flight to Kansas City only to arrive when the plane had already left and was forced to spend the night in the airport.

"I had nothing at all, not even a phone. All night long, I sat there in the airport. I didn't even know what time it was, so I couldn't sleep. I merely stayed there and waited as soon as I arrived at my gate. I was unable to make a phone call to my parents or even get a snack.

"I had money, but I had no idea how to pay for it because I didn't understand how the US dollar operated. A further reason I didn't want to go anywhere was my fear of getting lost. I simply waited there until around eight in the morning, when my jet was scheduled to take off. It was horrible."

Eventually, she was received by KU assistant coach Michael Whittlesey. "Since I didn't have a phone, I was concerned that when I arrived, no one would be there to greet me," Lokedi said.

However, he was waiting for me when I arrived at the airport, and we then took a car to Lawrence.

Another issue she had to cope with was getting used to the food in her new nation.

"When I first came here, I didn't know what anything was, so I couldn't eat," she remarked.

"I used to go to the cafeteria and just gaze around. Everything appeared so different, and I was at a loss for what to do.

"With the assistance of her teammates and coaches, Lokedi took small steps toward acclimatising to her new environment. Thankfully, senior cross-country runner Daniel Koech, a fellow Kenyan, was there to provide her with the assistance she needed.

“Daniel did a lot for me. He was the one who helped me get a phone, or sometimes I would use his phone to call because he already knew how to dial home. He helped me get used to things here and he would also translate.

"It was challenging because my limited command of English made it difficult for me to communicate. While we did study English in high school, we didn't use it very often.

"Sometimes I would hear someone say something and then I would go ask him what they said. He was really pleasant and a great assistant. After class, we continued speaking in our mother tongue."

After enduring a comparable shift, Koech was determined to ensure that Lokedi wouldn't have to confront any obstacles on his own.

Lokedi acknowledges her teammates for encouraging her to realise her greatest potential as well. She has reached unprecedented heights, thanks to her unwavering energy.

Lokedi is on the market for more awards, even though she has plenty of them already to adorn her trophy cabinet. 

 "Those are the things that inspire me. When I practice every day, I consider what I want to achieve. I have a goal to accomplish. I want to perform better than I did previously."

She wants to improve other people's lives with her university education to uplift her community.

"Even though I am from a small, impoverished town, I am sure if I go back there with my community health major, I will work to make things better and assist people.

"I can educate them on topics such as their health and other unfamiliar yet important information."  

She reckons that her accomplishment will inspire budding athletes to pursue their dreams in life.

“It’s been so fun in the US and I enjoy every bit of it. I have three younger sisters in high school and it’s something I want to motivate other people to do.  "I've had a great time in the US and I love every aspect of it.

" I wish to inspire others to follow in the footsteps of my three younger sisters who are currently enrolled in high school.  

A third-place showing at the NCAA Midwest Regional and a 10th-place showing at the NCAA Championships highlighted her stellar freshman career, which also set a record for the highest individual finish by a KU female in the national championship meet. 

 She emerged as KU's lead female runner in all nine meets of her collegiate career where she placed in the top 10 in eight of the nine competitions. 

 "I won the 10,000m at the 2018 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships."

Lokedi has been a 10-time All-American & 12-time Big 12 champion, as of March 2019.

(05/21/2024) Views: 333 ⚡AMP
by Athletics
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Cleveland Marathon: Will Loevner defends men's title, proposes to girlfriend after win

Will Loevner has captured his second Cleveland Marathon, and it was a special one.

Loevner won in 2 hours, 19 minutes and 44 seconds. The Pittsburgh man, who won last year in his first time competing, celebrated by proposing to his girlfriend in front of the crowd.

With his win, he qualifies for the coveted Boston Marathon.

The 47th annual marathon, which brings in hundreds of runners from all over the country and the world, took place this weekend in downtown Cleveland in warm and sunny weather. Hundreds of supporters cheered as runners crossed the finish line by Mall B.

In addition to the marathon, there were a half marathon, 10K and 5K races.

For Julianne Hill of Middleburg Heights, who ran in her fourth 5k during the Cleveland Marathon weekend, but her 92nd race over all. She said it felt “amazing to cross the finish line.”

“I’m tearing up,” she added. “It’s amazing every time. There’s people all over the route. No matter where you are, they’re cheering, they have signs. It’s just the best, I love it.”

Hill said after 12 years, this would be her last year competing.

“I’m going to run 100 races and I’m done,” she said. “I’m almost there.”

This was the first marathon for Veronica Wulw for Broadview Heights, who competed in the half marathon.

“For my 26th birthday, I decided to challenge myself to run a marathon for the first time,” she said.

“Going from from running on your own with no one else around you to being able to cross that finish line with other runners - it’s awesome to see everyone have the same passion and being one unit,” she said.

She added she hoped to return next year and compete in the marathon.

(05/20/2024) Views: 302 ⚡AMP
by Megan Sims
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Cleveland Marathon

Cleveland Marathon

The Cleveland Marathon features a relatively flat and fast course, great volunteer support and a scenic view of downtown Cleveland and its major landmarks. The course has been designed for our athletes to enjoy views of Browns Stadium, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Lake Erie and many other Cleveland highlights. The Cleveland Marathon began in 1978 in an...

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Former Boston Marathon champion finally receives prize money from a stranger after 10-year wait

The 2014 Boston Marathon winner Buzunesh Deba has finally her received prize money from a stranger after waiting for 10 years following Kenyan Rita Jeptoo's doping ban.

At the 2014 Boston Marathon, Ethiopian distance runner Buzunesh Deba gave her all and settled for second place with Rita Jeptoo wining the race in style.

However, in 2016, Jeptoo, the winner of the marathon, was disqualified by the Athletics Integrity Unit over a doping offense and Deba was now crowned champion but without being paid the prize money she deserved.

She has waited for 10 years, patiently, to receive her money and it was finally given to her, not by the race organizers, but by a stranger.

The race organizers insisted that they gave Jeptoo all the money, the $75,000 for winning the race and an extra $25,000 for setting the course record, an amount they never got back from her following her doping offense.

"She took my chance. I lose so many things. I thought everything is to change after I hear the news, but nothing,” Deba lamented last month, as quoted by CBS News.

However, someone, whom she claims to not know, decided to heal her wound and grant her the prize money. As reported by CBS News, Doug Guyer, a Boston College graduate and a businessman in the Philadelphia area, read about Deba's story in the Wall Street Journal and decided to offer her the money.

The Boston Marathon fan decided he would pay her out of his own pocket and he actually did it by sending Deba a cheque for $75,000 as he also considered paying her the remaining $25,000.

Following the news, the Boston Athletic Association explained that they are still in the process of recovering the prize money from Jeptoo.

In a statement, they said: “The Boston Athletic Association stands for clean sport and fair competition. Following the ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the B.A.A. began pursuit of reclaiming prize money awards from Rita Jeptoo.

“As the matter is still ongoing, we are unable to comment further at this time. We are in the process of attempting to recover the prize money awarded to Ms Jeptoo, so that it can be repaid to Ms Deba.

“While we believe that Ms Deba is due the prize money as she is the rightful winner of the 2014 women's race, there are policies held by World Athletics and supported by World Marathon Majors that we, along with the other members of the organization, follow.

“The B.A.A is still pursuing Ms Jeptoo to recover the prize money for Ms Deba, which the B.A.A. believes would be a just and fair result for her and all runners who follow the rules. As this matter is still ongoing, we are not able to comment further at this time.”

(05/17/2024) Views: 465 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Kipruto excited to run side by side with legendary Kipchoge

The 2024 Tokyo Marathon champion Benson Kipruto reckons he has polished his act satisfactorily to reap immensely at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Kipruto emphatically stated his desire to light up the French capital with a sublime performance. 

“I’m looking forward to competing in the Paris Games. Being named to the team is a great privilege and I cherish the rare chance to represent the country in the Olympics,” Kipruto stated.

“I’m ready to fight bravely for my country. I believe I’m in good shape and ready to make the nation proud in Paris,” he added.

Kipruto said the thought of being on the same team as his role model Eliud Kipchoge fascinates him a lot, adding that the double Olympic champion has always been his key source of inspiration.

The duo mske up the quintet of Kenyan male marathoners tasked with flying the country’s flag at the quadrennial global multisport showpiece set for July 26 to August 11.

Kipruto tipped Kipchoge to spearhead Kenya’s lofty hunt for a podium sweep but vowed to give him a run for his money.

“He is a brilliant athlete, one who has always inspired me a great deal. I desire to be as great as him and step into his shoes once he calls time on his career,” Kipruto remarked.

Kipruto reiterated an earlier call made by his teammates for a concerted effort, pointing out it was the only way to ensure a podium sweep.

“I believe in the strength of team effort. Away from competition, we train together reside in the same camp, and interact like a family. I don’t see what should prevent us from going for an Olympic as a team,” Kipruto stated.

He said they would do away with their pre-race favourites tag to stave off complacency, adding that it would be tactically suicidal to underrate their opponents.

Kenya will be defending the title that Kipchoge stashed away at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in Japan and Kipruto has tipped the nation to replicate the feat in the French capital.

“We can’t afford to head to the competition with a superior mentality. I’ll appreciate that we have a solid team but we should be careful not to take our opponents for granted,” Kipruto said. “Marathon is a tricky venture and anything is bound to happen in competition,” he added.

Kipruto heads to the Games buoyed by impressive credentials as the winner of the Boston Marathon in 2021, the Chicago Marathon in 2022, and the Tokyo Marathon earlier this year.

(05/15/2024) Views: 424 ⚡AMP
by Tony Mballa
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Controversy Arises Over Boston’s Moving 6-Hour Results Cutoff

For back of the packer, heartbreak is learning their finishes are not official, even though they have times.

Laura Caster wants to be clear: She knew what the Boston Marathon rule was about official finishers. 

She was aware she had 6 hours from the time the last finisher crossed the starting line to finish the race in order to be considered official. 

Her problem? She didn’t know what time the last finisher crossed the starting line. 

Caster, 52, from Idlewild, California, was in corral 7 of Boston’s final wave, wave 4. And she crossed the starting line at 11:25 a.m. So for how many more minutes were runners crossing the starting line behind her? “Are they a minute behind me? Five minutes?” she wondered. 

Every minute would count for her. 

As it turned out, the final starter crossed the line at 11:28 a.m., so Caster needed to finish by 5:28 p.m. to be considered official.

Caster typically runs about 5:40 for a marathon. She finished Tokyo on March 3 in 5:41:50. Tokyo was her fifth of the World Marathon Majors six-star challenge. Boston was to be her sixth. 

To gain entry to Boston, she had run for a charity, Team for Kids. She raised more than $5,000—part of the more than $40 million Boston Marathon organizers say the race raises through charity runners every year. And she treated Tokyo as a long run for Boston. 

But the weather was warm on Marathon Monday, April 15. The slower runners start later in the day. And from early on, Caster knew she was in trouble. Her stomach was upset. She couldn’t take in all the fluids she needed. She was grabbing ice every time a spectator offered it. 

Still, she plugged along, hitting every timing mat—even though the mats are rolled up along the course on pace with the 6-hour finish time. She passed halfway in 2:58:40.

At numerous points, Caster became aware of a vehicle trailing runners like her, who were going at about 6-hour pace. And she asked a volunteer at one timing mat, “How do I know if I’m going to be official?” Caster said he pointed at the car and told her she needed to finish in front of it. 

“I was like, okay. That’s a definite answer,” she said. “I’m not going to look at my watch. I’m going to focus on not throwing up and being in front of that car.” 

Caster was well ahead of the car on Commonwealth Avenue when she turned right onto Hereford Street. Just to be safe, as she approached the finish line on Boylston, Caster took a final look behind her. No sign of the official car. She crossed at 5:31 p.m., in 6:05:59. Volunteers put her in a wheelchair and sent her to the medical tent. From there, she was transported to a hospital with low blood potassium levels. She was released later that evening. 

At the hospital, she looked at the results and realized she was not official. She had a gun time and a net time, but no place. 

Caster was devastated. All the training, all the time and expense of pursuing the six stars, and she wasn’t really done. “I’ve worked for years, was so excited to have gotten to this point,” she said of her progress. “I was just leveled.” 

Caster’s coach is Meb Keflezighi, an Olympic silver medalist and the 2014 Boston Marathon champion. On the phone with him, she broke down. 

He told her, “I couldn’t be prouder of you. You missed it. We both know that you completed all six. You’re not official. But you showed grit, you showed determination.” 

Allowing roads to reopen

Caster was not alone. Chris Lotsbom, a BAA spokesman, wrote in an email to Runner’s World that 497 people appeared to have crossed the Boston finish line this year after it officially closed. Volunteers staffed the area and handed out medals for approximately 4 hours, or until 9:45 p.m., longer than the race has ever continued to note times before. 

Of those 497, many were within a few minutes or seconds of 5:28 p.m. 

Cortney Blackburn, also in pursuit of her sixth star at Boston, missed by 37 seconds. 

In an email exchange after the race with BAA officials, she asked how she was to know what the cutoff time was after she had started running. She, too, was told about the car, with flashing lights on the top, going at 6-hour pace and alerting runners if they were falling behind. Blackburn never saw the car—she finished well ahead of it—and she, too, recorded a split at every finish line mat along the way. 

Lotsbom confirmed the car was there—a “road reopening vehicle”—he called it, meant to inform runners that roads were reopening and aid stations were shutting down. 

“Without knowing specifics, I can’t comment on the individual instances referenced,” he wrote. “I can say that we are reviewing our processes and procedures in regards to final finishers for future Boston Marathons.”

Blackburn crossed the finish line and picked up two medals: the Boston Marathon medal and the World Marathon Majors six-star medal. Only later did she realize she wasn’t official in Boston’s results and therefore isn’t official in the WMM results, either. She has the medals, but no online record of her achievement.

But if the finish line remains open, and the timing continues, why not allow runners to be official? Or at least communicate a time—for example, 5:30 p.m.—that is consistent from year to year? Why use a moving target? 

Boston’s strict cutoff is part of the agreement the race has with the cities and towns along the route. The 6-hour time limit is in place “to support the communities throughout which the race runs, to allow their road reopening program to commence as planned,” Lotsbom wrote. 

“We understand we could do even more in communicating the closing time on race day and we are looking to enhance that messaging to all runners for next year to ensure everyone is clear [on] the time limit and time that the finish line will officially close on race day,” Lotsbom wrote. 

A grace period

A few runners who are much slower than 6 hours get to start in earlier waves, which gives them more time to finish. For some runners close to the 5:28 p.m. cutoff, starting in an earlier corral of wave 4 would have meant the difference between an official and unofficial finish. 

In 2015, some members of Boston’s Quarter Century Club, people with 25 or more consecutive Boston finishes, were concerned about the 6-hour limit, which was imposed for the 2016 race. So race officials moved them to Wave 2. Problem solved. 

For others, the problem remains. And the moving cutoff appears to affect more women than men, older runners more than younger ones, and many runners of color.

Hector Espinal, like Blackburn, only discovered well after the race that he wasn’t official. He wrote on Instagram on April 18, “Despite crossing the finish line, finishing the race and receiving my medals, this morning I was informed that I did not complete the Boston Marathon in the time allotted to be considered an official finisher and @wmmajors 6 Star Marathoner.” 

The post has more than 10,000 likes, and 1,000 comments, the majority of them supportive. Elite runner Mary Ngugi of Kenya, who was sixth in 2:24:24, wrote, “No no, you are a 6 time world major marathoner and a hero.”

Boston is a race that has at times struggled with its image, which critics call elitist. Spectators last year accused the race of over-policing enthusiastic fans, most of whom were people of color, at a mile 21 cheer zone, which prompted a lawsuit. Runner’s World reported in 2022 about the B.A.A.’s obscure, largely white, invitation-only membership group, which is involved with governance of the organization. 

To many observers in the running community, setting a fixed finish time would be an easy way to help the race’s image as concerned about runners of varying abilities, not just the front of the pack.

Other races in the World Marathon Majors are much more lax about their finishing times, with the exception of Tokyo, which has nine cutoff points along the route, and runners are stopped if they lag behind. There are no questions, however, about where they stand. 

But finishers of London, New York, and Chicago appear in results with times hours slower than the races’ published cutoff times. Berlin, which has a posted cutoff time of 6:15, stays open for an extra 15 to 20 minutes before the Brandenburg Gate closes, according to previous finishers. 

Blackburn won’t be back to Boston anytime soon. “I don’t know honestly if I would do it again without major changes to actually be inclusive of non-qualifying athletes,” she wrote in a message to Runner’s World. “I think [B.A.A. officials] are putting out ‘we are trying’ vibes without actually trying.”

Caster, on the other hand, plans to try again. The uncertainty while she was on the course—and the wrong information she was given about the official vehicle—were what upset her. She doesn’t know if it would have made a difference for her had she been aware of the time she had to beat. 

“But I would have liked to the opportunity to have tried,” she said. “That’s the part that I’m sore about.” 

(05/12/2024) Views: 340 ⚡AMP
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U.S. Olympic Marathoners Will Race the Bolder Boulder 10K as a Pre-Paris Tune-Up

Conner Mantz, Clayton Young, and Leonard Korir will run in the International Pro Team Challenge on May 27.

Memorial Day is always an exceptional celebration for runners in Boulder, Colorado, but this year, it will have some extra special Olympic flair.

On Monday, May 27, more than 40,000 runners will run through the city that’s known for the iconic Flatirons rock formations, the Pearl Street pedestrian mall, and an exceptionally active population in the annual Bolder Boulder 10K. Now in its 44th year, it’s been one of the top road running races in the U.S. since its inception, and this year will serve as one of the final tune-ups for the men’s U.S. Olympic marathon squad before racing in the Paris Olympics later this summer.

Conner Mantz, Clayton Young, and Leonard Korir, the top three finishers in the 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials who will be racing the marathon in the Paris Olympics on August 10, will be competing as Team USA Red in the Bolder Boulder’s International Pro Team Challenge that follows the citizen’s races. (Korir is expected to officially be named to the U.S. team in early May based on final pre-Olympic international rankings.)

The pro race, which has a prize purse of $83,700 before potential bonuses, is one of the things that makes the Bolder Boulder so unique. After all the runners in 98 citizen waves have completed the race, professional men’s and women’s international teams from more than a dozen countries compete on the same course for team and individual titles. The races feature a staggered start, with women beginning 15 minutes before the men so the winners of each race will finish about 10 minutes apart inside the University of Colorado’s Folsom Field football stadium.

The finishing moments are among the thrilling spectacles in American running. By that point, the stadium is filled with a near-capacity crowd of roaring runners, family, and friends who have been watching the action play out on the massive video screens.

“The finish in the full stadium is like nothing else in the sport,” says Mantz, 27, who won the men’s race last year in 29:08 with a thrilling late-race surge to pass Kenya’s Alex Masai in the final 200 meters before the finish. “It was pretty electric. It took away all the pain you’re feeling mid-race. I was like, ‘Just race as hard as you can.’”

Team USA Red will have plenty of competition, from Team USA White, the secondary American team of Jared Ward, Futsum Zienasellassie, and Sam Chelanga, as well as teams from Kenya, Ethiopia, Mexico, and Rwanda. Teams are scored like a cross country race, with points awarded on the basis of finishing place, which means the team with the lowest combined score for all three runners is the winner. Ties are decided by the positions of the third-place finishers.

The women’s Team USA Red team will be led by defending champion Emily Durgin, along with Sara Hall and Boulder native Nell Rojas. Durgin finished ninth at the U.S. Olympic Trials in February and won the USATF 10 Mile Championships on April 7 in Washington D.C. At last year’s Bolder Boulder, she stormed to victory in 33:24, winning by 24 seconds over Kenya’s Daisy Kimeli.

Hall placed fifth in the U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon on February 3 in a U.S. master’s record (2:26:06) and 15th in the Boston Marathon on April 15. The women’s Team USA White roster will be composed of an all-University of Colorado alumnae squad—Makena Morley, Sara Vaughn, and Carrie Verdon.

“I can’t wait to be back in Boulder for the best day of the year,” says Durgin, 29, who will compete in the U.S. Olympic Trials 10,000 meters on the track in late June with the hopes of making the U.S. Olympic team. “Competing with Nell and Sara will make the experience even better.”

The women’s U.S. Olympic marathon team of Fionna O’Keefe, Emily Sisson, and Dakotah Lindwurm were invited to race in the Bolder Boulder but each runner declined, citing scheduling timing conflicts or a disinterest in racing at Boulder’s lofty altitude (5,430 feet). All of the runners who are racing for the U.S. teams in Boulder live at 4,500 feet or higher.

An Olympic Legacy

Boulder is known as one of the top running  meccas in the U.S., in part because elite-level American and international runners have made it their training base since Olympic gold medalist Frank Shorter arrived in the early 1970s. Emma Coburn, Jenny Simpson, Yared Nuguse, Joe Klecker, Jake Riley, Hellen Obiri, and Edna Kiplagat are among the many top-level runners who are currently training in Boulder.  Shorter, the 1972 marathon gold medalist, was a co-founder of Bolder Boulder 10K in 1979, and helped it grow into one of the country’s largest races. 

Since then, numerous U.S. Olympians have raced in the Bolder Boulder, including Deena Kastor (a three-time women’s champion), Aliphine Tuliamuk (the 2022 women’s winner), Alan Culpepper, Elva Dyer, Ryan Hall, Abdi Abdirahman, Jorge Torres, Shalane Flanagan, Amy Cragg, Magdalena Boulet, and Libby Hickman, as well as Korir (who won it in 2022), and Ward (who was fourth in 2022).

Thanks to Boulder’s robust running community and the prestige of the race, the Bolder Boulder has also always featured fast sub-elite runners competing in the early citizen waves. Yet, the race has also celebrated dedicated middle-of-the-pack runners, as well as the first-time runners and walkers in the later waves. It was one of the first races to have bands playing along the course (as well as belly dancers and other entertainers), runners dressed up in costumes, elite wheelchair races, and in recent years, it has been known for a mid-race slip-and-slide and unofficial bacon aid station.

For the past 25 years, the Bolder Boulder has organized a special Memorial Day tribute—one of the largest in the country—that honors military veterans and new cadets.

The U.S. men’s Olympic marathon team competing in this year’s Bolder Boulder will be a legacy moment for the race, says Bolder Boulder race director Cliff Bosley.

“Having the three men that will represent our country in the marathon at this summer’s Paris Olympic Games is something we are extremely proud of,” Bosley says. “All three ran here last year, and to have them back is just incredible for the race, the city of Boulder, and the sport of running.”

(05/08/2024) Views: 280 ⚡AMP
by Brian Metzler
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Ethiopians Lemi Berhanu Hayle and Bedatu Hirpa Badane win the Prague International Marathon

Ethiopian Lemi Berhanu Hayle won the 29th edition of the Prague Marathon in commanding fashion, running away from the field at 25km and not giving anyone else a chance. His winning time was 2:08:44, one minute and 44 seconds ahead of second place Kipkemoi Kiprono. Martin Edlman (2:22:19) produced the surprise performance of the day, becoming the first Czech finisher.

“The race had a great standard. You never get tired of seeing the joy on the runners’ faces. We are all already looking forward to the jubilee thirtieth year,” said Carlo Capalbo, president of the RunCzech organizing committee, whose events have been awarded World Athletics labels.

The men

Last year’s race record by Alexander Mutiso still stands at 2:05:09, but Lemi Berhanu Hayle, winner of the 2016 Boston Marathon, put on a great performance. “I am very happy. I wanted to win here. And it worked, so I’m very happy. It was difficult mainly because of the nasty wind,” Hayle said. Kenyan Kipkemoi Kiprono (2:10:28) finished in second place, while his compatriot Joshua Kipkemboi Kogo (2:10:51) secured third place.Four runners who had already run under 2:05 were competing for the win.

Herpasa Negasa Kitesa, Abebe Negewo Degefa, Lemi Berhanu Hayle and Abayneh Degu Tsehay all came to the race in good form, but today Hayle was able to pull away from them with ease and secure a clear victory. “I felt very good from the beginning. It was a beautiful race, Prague is beautiful and the fans cheered us on all along the track. I would like to come back here again. It came out perfectly,” said the Ethiopian champion.

The women

In the women’s race, Ethiopian Bedatu Hirpa Badane won in the time of 2:23:41, surprising even the biggest favourites. In second place was the Kenyan Dorcas Jepchirchir Tuitoek clocking a 2:24:50. She was followed by another Ethiopian in Amare Shewarge Alene (2:27:32) who at 37 years of age was only minutes behind her personal best, despite the challenging conditions.

The Czech Republic champion was Petra Pastorová (2:47:03). “I am extremely happy. Considering my age, it was difficult, but I enjoyed it,” said the 47-year-old winner.

(05/06/2024) Views: 400 ⚡AMP
by Christopher Kelsall
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Prague Marathon

Prague Marathon

The Volkswagen Prague International Marathon is considered by many, to be one of the top 10 marathons and invariably contains a number of high profile runners. Winding through the streets of one of Europe's most beautiful cities it is a spectacular race. And with a mainly flat course there is the chance for a personal best. Since its inception in...

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NHL legend Zdeno Chara crushes 50K ultra-trail race

Three weeks after finishing the Boston Marathon, the former 6'9" foot defencemen took on a 50K ultra-trail race, finishing eighth overall

Former NHL defenceman Zdeno Chara may have found his new hobby: ultrarunning. On May 13, the 46-year-old completed his first ultra-trail race at the Watuppa Trail 50K in Fall River, Mass., and performed admirably.

“I tried a new distance today,” Chara wrote on his Instagram. “I can’t thank my team enough for their incredible help and support for my first ultra trail race.”

Despite lacking ultra experience, the former 6’9 foot defencemen finished the 50K in eighth overall, in 5:07:29, and even took second place in his 40-54 age category. 

Since retiring from the NHL in 2022, Chara has found an interest in distance running. He completed the 2023 Boston Marathon in a very respectable time of 3:38:23; he also raised USD $33,333 for The Hoyt Foundation during his campaign.

Chara holds the all-time NHL record for most games played by a defenceman, with 1,680. He played for four teams over his 20+ year career, starting with the New York Islanders, Ottawa Senators, Boston Bruins and Washington Capitals.Chara entered the race with his friend and training partner Becca Pizzi,who won the 50K outright in 3:59:11. Pizzi also helped pace Chara for his first marathon last month.We think it’s only a matter of time until we see the big man take on a 100-miler.

(05/05/2024) Views: 265 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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She Qualified for Boston by Doing the Majority of Her Running in Water

Running changed my life trajectory. Before I started running, I had a job as an executive in fast-food marketing. After I started, I changed my career course to focus on health and fitness. I became a certified personal trainer via the American Council on Exercise (ACE) in 2008. In 2011, I became a USA Track & Field run coach, certified Aquatic Exercise Association instructor, and then created Fluid Running as a result for my passion of water running. 

I started running 5Ks and 10Ks, but then signed up for a marathon. I ran my first marathon, the Chicago Marathon, in 2001. Then in 2002, I ran the Chicago Marathon again and qualified for Boston. I was hooked. I followed Hal Higdon’s plans exclusively for my first 12 marathons that I ran between 2001 and 2009, and still reference him. 

However, in 2010, I was training for the Chicago Marathon with my siblings, and raising money for the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation in honor of my nephew. Six weeks before the race, I tore my calf muscle and my doctor told me I could not run. I was devastated, yet determined. 

I searched “how do you stay in running shape when you can not run,” and came across an article on aqua jogging, and contacted the author who is a running coach. His associate gave me a training plan that included five runs a week in the pool, including my 20 miler! I ran solely in the water for the final six weeks of marathon training. 

After I discovered pool running in 2010, I would still reference Hagdon’s plans, but I would replace two to three of the land runs on the schedule for water runs.

For pool running, I wear a flotation belt which allows me to run as if I were on land. I am upright in the pool with my legs underneath me. I keep my head held high, shoulders pulled back, and my arms swing by my side. My legs mimic land running form but with a little more “sweepy” back and forth motion. 

For the 2022 Chicago Marathon, I decided to try a Track Club Babe training plan because I liked lower mileage, and I focused on speed and slower long runs. I only did the long run and one speed work run on land. The rest I replicated in the pool, and I still qualified for Boston! 

Since discovering pool running, my last six marathons have been a combination of about 50 percent pool and 50 percent pavement.

This was my “aha” moment, and I wanted to share my journey, so I created Fluid Running in 2011. A huge benefit is that there is absolutely no impact on the body, so you can do it with many common injuries.

In my recent training for the 2024 Boston Marathon, I did two or three land runs per week (which includes a speed session and the long run), the rest of my running in the water. 

I honestly don’t know what I would do without running in my life! It’s my moving meditation. I started dating my husband through running, made many friends, and ultimately created Fluid Running because of it. 

These tips have made my running journey a success:

1. Strength train

I’m a huge fan of strength training, especially as we age. I do two sessions a week focusing on my leg muscles and core. I do a lot of single-leg exercises. I know this has played a huge role in keeping me strong, especially toward the end of marathons. 

2. Adopt positive self talk

I’m a big believer in positive self-talk. I talk to myself constantly during my runs. One of my mantras that I will say over and over when I run is “strong legs, strong mind, strong body.” “Yes you can” is another one I say often.

3. Learn from your setbacks

I’ve had some setbacks, like all runners. Setbacks, though, are when I ultimately become better and stronger. Setbacks allow me to reflect, and they make me realize just how much I love and need running in my life! Setbacks are temporary, so don’t stress out about them.

Jennifer’s Must-Have Gear 

→ SPI Belt: I love it because it’s comfortable and holds so much—my phone, my airpods, gum, and a gel! 

→ Power Plate Vibrating Roller: I love it because it gets so deep and feels so good. I try to use it both before and after my runs. 

→ Goodr Sunglasses: I love them because they are light, cute, and they make everything look deeper in color. The sky is so blue when I wear them!

(05/04/2024) Views: 295 ⚡AMP
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Cleveland Marathon winner Ashton Swinford looks to defend title for third year

Hudsonites might have caught a glimpse of Ashton Swinford in December as she dashed by the competition and snagged first place in the local Frosty 5-Mile race for the third year in a row (and with a 2023-course personal record of 28:53.)

But they might not have realized that they were also witnessing the running gait of a two-time Cleveland Marathon champion. This month, Swinford prepares to “flee to the Cleve” once again, to defend her title on Sunday, May 19.

Swinford credits her late-bloomer love of running to a stint on the cross-country team at Ohio Northern University. Her athleticism, however, was already prevalent during childhood, when she reached level 10 – the highest level – of the USA Gymnastics Junior Olympics Program.

“My athletic journey started as a gymnast in second grade, and I stuck with gymnastics throughout all of high school,” she said. “I thought I was going to do gymnastics in college, but after my senior year, I decided, ‘I feel satisfied. I did what I wanted to do. I’m healthy. I want to focus on school.’”

While studying biology at ONU, Swinford began making friends with members of the university’s track and cross country teams. After some convincing, she joined the track team as a sprinter, but it didn’t take long to discover her knack for distance running. 

“Being a gymnast made me a pretty good hurdler and sprinter,” she said. “But the team convinced me to start trying longer distances. I joined the cross country team for social reasons, and from there, the rest is history.”

In 2018, Swinford and her husband welcomed twins into the world. She had continued running and was inspired by the women just like her – amateur runners with a diversified life outside of running – that she witnessed qualifying for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. Less than a year after the babies arrived, Swinford could run a marathon non-competitively with a casual 3:12 pace. 

“Post-collegiately, and one of the things that I’m most proud of, is that I’m actually a much better runner now than I was in college. I have stuck with it, and each year I tend to get a little bit better than the year before,” she said.

Her budding distance prowess combined with an admiration for fellow “normal” runners competing on the world stage was the impetus for Swinford to start competitive running again. In 2019, after training harder and going further than she ever had, Swinford ran a marathon in 2:58, only 13 minutes shy of Olympic qualifying time. Her personal record marathon time is 2:44, which she ran at the Columbus marathon in 2023. 

Originally from Bowling Green, Swinford settled in the Cleveland area with her husband in 2015, after obtaining her graduate degree in physical therapy from the University of Dayton. Now a Hudson resident, she splits her time evenly between the roles of parent, part-time physical therapist and avid runner. She has mastered the art of multitasking: She fits in runs while her kids are in morning preschool, for example, and sometimes even squeezes in an afternoon workout.

Swinford’s community in Northern Ohio extends beyond her immediate family to her chosen family, CLE Racing, an “elite female running team representing Cleveland.” She serves as one of the team’s captains and values the supportive environment whether it’s race day, a group trail run or a kind comment on the group’s Facebook page.

“We all live in different parts of the Cleveland area,” Swinford explained. “We’ll meet at different parks or trailheads to train together and talk about races we want to do. We do volunteer events by supporting other local running events. It’s been a whole lot of fun to have a community of people with the same interests as me who can support each other in our running goals.”

Swinford looks forward to competing alongside her teammates in the upcoming Cleveland Marathon. Before the challenge of safeguarding her title in “The Land,” however, Swinford and some of her teammates are headed east to participate in what she said is the “first race people ask about when they learn you’re a marathon runner” –  the Boston Marathon.

“I’m glad to finally say that I’m finally doing my first Boston Marathon,” she said. “I don’t have a strong time goal because it’s such a tough course. I just want to finish feeling really good about myself.”

Despite her excitement to compete in Boston, Swinford’s most anticipated race is still at home, in Cleveland, which she refers to as “my hometown race.” As she crosses the finish line this May, Swinford hopes to run to victory with some of her biggest sideline fans: her CLE Racing teammates, her husband and, of course, her twins. 

(05/02/2024) Views: 362 ⚡AMP
by Maddy Holman
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Cleveland Marathon

Cleveland Marathon

The Cleveland Marathon features a relatively flat and fast course, great volunteer support and a scenic view of downtown Cleveland and its major landmarks. The course has been designed for our athletes to enjoy views of Browns Stadium, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Lake Erie and many other Cleveland highlights. The Cleveland Marathon began in 1978 in an...

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Kenenisa Bekele named to Ethiopian Olympic marathon team

Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele and Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge will square off in the marathon at the Paris Olympics.

It’s been 12 years since Ethiopian distance runner Kenenisa Bekele last put on his country’s singlet at an Olympic Games, but he has officially earned his spot on the Ethiopian marathon team for Paris 2024. 

As reported by ESPN, Bekele is one of three men selected by the Ethiopian Athletics Federation to represent Ethiopia in the marathon at the 2024 Paris Olympics. This will be Bekele’s fourth Olympic Games and the first time he has represented his country in the marathon. He has previously won four Olympic medals (three gold, one silver) across the 5,000m and 10,000m events, at Athens (2004) and Beijing (2008).

Bekele earned his spot on the Ethiopian team after an excellent showing at the 2024 London Marathon, where he placed second behind Kenya’s Alexander Mutiso, in 2:04:15 (a men’s 40+ world record). His time was four seconds faster than his previous master’s best, from the 2023 Valencia Marathon in December (2:04:19). 

Bekele will face his long-time rival, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge, at one final Olympic Games in the streets of Paris, almost exactly 20 years after their first Olympic matchup in Athens. Kipchoge and Bekele are two of the fastest marathoners in history, and are part of the exclusive club of four men who have gone under the 2:02 marathon mark.

Joining Bekele on the Ethiopian team is another athlete in that exclusive club, Sisay Lemma. Lemma has a personal best of 2:01:53 from the Valencia Marathon in December. Most recently, Lemma won the 2024 Boston Marathon in 2:06:17, ending Evans Chebet of Kenya’s two-year reign. 

2022 world marathon champion and 2023 New York City Marathon champion Tamirat Tola rounds out the Ethiopian squad. The difficult 2024 Paris Olympic course suits Tola’s style of racing well, and he’ll certainly be one of the favorites to win gold and end Kenya’s streak of champions. Ethiopia has not won gold in the men’s marathon since Gezahegne Abera in Sydney in 2000.

(05/02/2024) Views: 426 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Chebet vows to reclaim New York title after falling short in Boston

Two-time  Boston Marathon Champion Evans Chebet has his sights set on reclaiming the  New York City Marathon crown after failing to defend his  Boston title.

The  New York City Marathon, the largest marathon in the world, is slated for November 3.

The 35-year-old secured a third-place finish with a time of 2:07:22 at the 128th edition of the  Boston Marathon on April 15, with Ethiopians Mohamed Esa (2:06:58) and Sisay Lemma (2:06:17) taking the top spots.

Chebet is confident of a stronger performance at the New York Marathon and boldly declared that his intention to clinch the title.

“I have intensified my training ahead of the  New York Marathon and my target is to clinch the title. I hope to be ready before the event,” he noted.

In 2022, Chebet stormed to victory in 2:08:41 to secure the  New York title. He, however, was forced to pull out of the 2023 edition, where he was poised to defend his crown, due to injury.

Reflecting on his  Boston performance, Chebet attributed his third-place finish to a tendon rupture but expressed satisfaction with his result.

“Before we went to the  Boston Marathon I got an injury during training.  My tendon raptured and I couldn't perform to the best of my ability, finishing third.”

He added: “It was a tough race. Of course I would have loved to retain my title but I am still happy with my performance,” he stated.

In 2022, Chebet clocked 2:06:51 to claim his first  Boston title, leading a Kenyan podium sweep. Lawrence Cherono (2:07:21) placed second with Benson Kipruto (2:07:27) settling for third.

 

He returned to the Massachusetts capital in 2023, where he defended his title after clocking 2:05:54. Chebet emphasised his commitment to smooth training, working closely with physiotherapists to ensure his recovery.

“I started training two days ago. Right now, I feel my leg is okay. I have been working with my physiotherapist to ensure I get back on the road as soon as possible,” he noted.

With light 12km morning runs and careful monitoring, Chebet aims to avoid overexertion and potential setbacks.

“With the advice from my coach and doctors, I have been running 12km daily in the morning. I want my leg to adjust and heal first before I add more kilometres to my daily run,” he stated.

He also pointed out that he would not push himself because he feared a repeat of what happened last year before the  New York Marathon, where he was set to defend his crown.

“Last year, I pulled out of the marathon because of injury. I am taking things easy to ensure I am fit for  New York. I am hungry to reclaim my title,” Chebet stated.

(05/02/2024) Views: 383 ⚡AMP
by Teddy Mulei
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TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

The first New York City Marathon, organized in 1970 by Fred Lebow and Vince Chiappetta, was held entirely in Central Park. Of 127 entrants, only 55 men finished; the sole female entrant dropped out due to illness. Winners were given inexpensive wristwatches and recycled baseball and bowling trophies. The entry fee was $1 and the total event budget...

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Jepchirchir is confident with her finishing kick ahead of the Olympic Games

The reigning Olympic women’s marathon champion Peres Jepchirchir reckons she has the allure to hypnotize her way to another crown at the upcoming 2024 Paris Games in August.

Jepchirchir, 30, heads to the French capital inspired by her mind-blowing act of genius at the 2024 London Marathon, where she smashed the women’s only world record at a searing pace of two hours, 16 minutes, and 16 seconds.

In an exclusive interview on Wednesday, Jepchirchir expressed optimism in her determination to crack a back-to-back title at the Olympic Games.

She spoke moments after Athletics Kenya unveiled the official list of eight men and women marathoners who will hold forte for the nation at the Paris Games.

“I know it won’t be easy. I’m expecting a tough contest but I’m confident I’ll accomplish my pursuit at the Summer Olympics in Paris. I’ve equipped myself adequately for the enormous assignment ahead,” Jepchirchir remarked.

Jepchirchir said she would replicate the tactical blueprint that fired her to glory in previous races including her momentous triumph at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

“I have adopted a strong finishing kick that comes in handy on the home stretch. I’ve always made it impossible for my opponents to overtake me in the final 800m. That’s exactly what I intend to do,” Jepchirchir stated.

Reflecting on her historic windfall in the frigid streets of England last month, the diminutive runner said her record-smashing exploits caught her by surprise.

“I was thrilled by the victory. I was not expecting to shatter the world record. I remotely believed someone would smash it but it hardly crossed my mind that person would be me.”

The conquest served to embellish an astral career set in motion by two World Half Marathon victories in 2016 and 2020.

She went on to storm the 2021 New York City and 2022 Boston Marathon titles before wrapping up third at the 2023 London Marathon.

Jepchirchir headlines a starry roster of Kenyan marathoners tasked with hoisting the nation’s flag at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

According to a list unveiled by the National Olympic Committee of Kenya on Wednesday, Jepchirchir’s teammates include reigning Boston and New York Marathon champion Hellen Obiri, Tokyo Olympics silver medalist Brigid Kosgei, and 2022 New York Marathon champion Sharon Lokedi who has been incorporated as a reserve runner.

Double Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge headlines the men’s list that also boasts the recently crowned London Marathon champion Alex Mutiso,  Benson Kipruto and Timothy Kiplagat who has earned a spot on the team as a reserve.

The women’s Olympic race slated for August 11, will cover a 42,195km loop linking Paris and Versailles.

The marathon will begin at the Hôtel de Ville in Paris and ends at Les Invalides, passing through nine districts including the Paris— Boulogne-Billancourt, Sèvres, Ville d’Avray, Versailles, Viroflay, Chaville, Meudon and Issy-les-Moulineaux.

(05/02/2024) Views: 373 ⚡AMP
by Tony Mballa
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Three tips to bounce back from race disappointment

You’ve raced your spring season “A” race and fell short of the goals you set for yourself: now what?

Every runner experiences this. From frustration to heartbreak to wanting to give up altogether, it’s not uncommon to feel a range of emotions after putting yourself out there and not achieving what you set out to do. Whether it’s a BQ, a PB or simply executing new race tactics, the feeling of failing to achieve your goal can eat at you.

Elizabeth Clor, a Virginia-based running blogger, recreational marathoner and author of Boston Bound: A 7-Year Journey to Overcome Mental Barriers and Qualify for the Boston Marathon, is all too familiar with these type of setbacks. Clor went from a 4:46 marathon to a 3:15 over the course of a 20+ year running career and 34 completed marathons. She also regularly tests herself in other distances. 

Clor recommends a few key tips for overcoming race disappointment.

1.- Don’t waste energy stewing on the past

This one might be easier said than done, but ruminating on a poor race performance doesn’t do anything for you. Many runners go by the 24 or 48 our rule: you have that long to feel sad, but after that it’s time to move on. Mental energy spent feeling disappointed is energy taken away from moving forward and planning your next goal.

“Remember that not every race can be a PR,” says Clor, noting that it’s those few-and-far-between “breakthrough” efforts that bring far more joy than any poor race brings disappointment. Remember that this is a moment in time, but with determination and a smart approach, your next good race might be just around the corner.

2.- Change the way you set goals

One way to combat disappointment from not meeting your race goals is to approach them differently.

In her book, Clor talks about how she used to be laser-focused on setting marathon PBs. She now recommends picking several goals for a single race, so you give yourself a better chance of meeting one or two.

“Have some goals that are not time-based, so even if you don’t get your goal time, there are other ways to gain satisfaction from your effort,” she recommends.

From nailing your fuelling to strategy to remaining positive when times get tough, there are so many smaller goals you can set within a race that will distract you from the pressure of meeting a specific time.

3.- Re-evaluate your training and racing plan

If you didn’t meet your race goals, it could mean you need to approach your next one differently. This is a great time to look at how you trained, how you executed the race and what you could improve on. Make a list of what went well and what didn’t, and decide if you need to make any changes.

“I recommend giving yourself adequate recovery time,” Clor adds, noting that the downtime after a race is not the best time for drastic changes. “It can be tempting to resume things as soon as possible, but the body and mind need a break.”

(05/01/2024) Views: 250 ⚡AMP
by Claire Haines
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How to shave time off your marathon PB while running less

Sooke, B.C’s Kate Guy says that at 45, she is only getting faster in the marathon, and is close to breaking the three-hour mark, despite running less volume than she used to in her training.

The full-time consultant has been running for more than 20 years, and last week, ran her fastest Boston Marathon yet (3:10). It wasn’t until she started prioritizing quality work in every single run that she started seeing her marathon times drop significantly. She ran a three-hour marathon last year and now has her sights set on sub-three this summer.

Guy says that her run training has changed a lot in the two decades she’s been running, and the biggest difference is that she has cut out almost all “slow” running. She runs three or four times per week and ensures that these runs are packed with quality.

“In my experience, focusing on running at marathon pace is more helpful than long, slow, running” Guy says, when talking about where she prioritizes time on her feet. “If you only train your body to run slow, then you cannot expect to perform at a faster pace miraculously on race day.” 

As it turns out, Guy finds value in keeping some cycling in her weekly training. She credits this cross-training approach to her recent speed boost and history of staying injury-free (Guy has not had any major running injuries in her 20 years in the sport).

“On the weekend, I do a long bike (two to three hours) on Saturday, followed by my long run on a Sunday,” she explains.  “This is great, because my legs aren’t feeling fresh on Sunday, and it promotes running on tired legs, like you would at the middle to end of a marathon.”

Without easy runs in her week, Guy prioritizes three types of run sessions in her training: speed work, hill repeats, and long runs with tempo running sandwiched in. For the latter, there are three main long run workouts she follows:

Over-unders

5 km easy warmup 

3x (1 km at 15 seconds faster than goal marathon pace, 1 km at 15 seconds slower than goal marathon pace) 

easy cooldown 

Long run at race pace

20 to 30 minutes easy warmup

2 hours at goal marathon pace

15 minutes easy cooldown

Progression long run:

Running for 2.5 hours: start easy and every 30 minutes, increase pace by 15 to 20 seconds per kilometer 

High-volume running will always be the training method of choice for many top runners and coaches, but Guy proves that a different approach can produce the same results for amateur runners looking to maximize their available training time. For injury-prone runners, dialing back on volume but increasing quality and keeping in lots of cross-training may be the key to consistent improvement across long distances.

“This training style is definitely underrated, but my results demonstrate that you can get faster as you age, with less stress on your body,” Guy says.

(04/23/2024) Views: 229 ⚡AMP
by Claire Haines
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Canadian Boston Marathon age-grouper shares tips for running as we age

Sandy Rutledge began running in his early 60s; he has run the Boston Marathon four times. The Nova Scotian clocked an impressive 3:31:38 at Monday’s 128th running of the famous race, earning him second place for his division and top Canadian in that age bracket.

“It was a slower than normal Boston, with the heat,” Rutledge told Canadian Running after his race. “I backed it off and went a little slower than last year, because I didn’t want to push it and not finish.”

After a decade of running, Rutledge knows what he needs to do to stay competitive, but above all else, he’s looking at his longevity in the sport. “My goal is to run as long as I can,” he says. “In my 60s, I could run seven days a week and over 100 kilometres per week, but I’ve now backed that off to five days a week and lower volume,” he adds.

Rutledge has completed around 19 marathons and several shorter-distance races. And he has stayed relatively injury-free, thanks to a couple of key regimens that anchor his weekly training.

“I take Tuesdays entirely off running, and I do strength training,” he says, acknowledging that the consistency of these sessions has helped his healthy running streak. “I focus on the core in these… as we age, many people tend to develop back issues, and I’m no exception.”

Rutledge also shared that 20 to 30 minutes of daily stretching, often before his runs, has also played a big role in injury prevention.

As his career in real estate has wound down, Rutledge is grateful to running for helping him keep a daily routine, and a sense of purpose. “I wake up at 5 a.m.–I’m a morning person,” he says. “Running has brought me a sense of youth. I have continued doing most of the things I could do when I was younger, and I think running has done that for me.”

Having taken up running later in life than many other runners, Rutledge encourages anyone to give it a try if they’re curious, no matter their age. “I started really slow,” he says. “It began with walking and then adding in some running slowly… maybe a kilometre to start, and building up from there.”

Rutledge has no plans to slow down. “I’ve heard that most people have a 15-year life cycle in the marathon, and I’m 10 years in,” he says. “I’d like to keep running marathons into my 80s, but as long as I can keeping running five days a week, I’ll adjust the speed and the distances of my races, if I need to.”

Rutledge is looking forward to, hopefully, running the Athens Marathon later this year or next.

“That’s where it all began,” he says of the marathon. “I think we all owe it to the running gods to do that one at least once.”

(04/21/2024) Views: 239 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Canadian Boston Marathon age-grouper shares tips for running as we age

The Halifax runner took up running in his early 60s, and ran his fourth Boston Marathon on Monday.

Sandy Rutledge began running in his early 60s; he has run the Boston Marathon four times. The Nova Scotian clocked an impressive 3:31:38 at Monday’s 128th running of the famous race, earning him second place for his division and top Canadian in that age bracket.

“It was a slower than normal Boston, with the heat,” Rutledge told Canadian Running after his race. “I backed it off and went a little slower than last year, because I didn’t want to push it and not finish.”

After a decade of running, Rutledge knows what he needs to do to stay competitive, but above all else, he’s looking at his longevity in the sport. “My goal is to run as long as I can,” he says. “In my 60s, I could run seven days a week and over 100 kilometres per week, but I’ve now backed that off to five days a week and lower volume,” he adds.

Rutledge has completed around 19 marathons and several shorter-distance races. And he has stayed relatively injury-free, thanks to a couple of key regimens that anchor his weekly training.

“I take Tuesdays entirely off running, and I do strength training,” he says, acknowledging that the consistency of these sessions has helped his healthy running streak. “I focus on the core in these… as we age, many people tend to develop back issues, and I’m no exception.”

Rutledge also shared that 20 to 30 minutes of daily stretching, often before his runs, has also played a big role in injury prevention.

As his career in real estate has wound down, Rutledge is grateful to running for helping him keep a daily routine, and a sense of purpose. “I wake up at 5 a.m.–I’m a morning person,” he says. “Running has brought me a sense of youth. I have continued doing most of the things I could do when I was younger, and I think running has done that for me.”

Having taken up running later in life than many other runners, Rutledge encourages anyone to give it a try if they’re curious, no matter their age. “I started really slow,” he says. “It began with walking and then adding in some running slowly… maybe a kilometre to start, and building up from there.”

Rutledge has no plans to slow down. “I’ve heard that most people have a 15-year life cycle in the marathon, and I’m 10 years in,” he says. “I’d like to keep running marathons into my 80s, but as long as I can keeping running five days a week, I’ll adjust the speed and the distances of my races, if I need to.”

Rutledge is looking forward to, hopefully, running the Athens Marathon later this year or next.

“That’s where it all began,” he says of the marathon. “I think we all owe it to the running gods to do that one at least once.”

(04/20/2024) Views: 274 ⚡AMP
by Claire Haines
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Kipruto confident ahead of Paris Olympic Games debut

Kenyan long-distance runner Benson Kipruto has vowed to light up the 2024 Paris Olympic Games on his way to a podium finish.

Kipruto pledged a master-class act at the Games, saying he would be out to prove the nation’s mettle as an athletics powerhouse

Kipruto, 33, comprises the talent-laden list of Kenyan male marathoners tasked with flying the country’s flag at the premier quadrennial global showpiece.

He will hold forte for the East African athletics powerhouse alongside compatriots Eliud Kipchoge, Alexander Mutiso, Vincent Kipkemoi Ngetich and Timothy Kiplagat.

He heads to the French capital booted by impressive credentials in his stellar career having previously tucked away the 2021  Boston Marathon, the 2022  Chicago Marathon as well as the Tokyo Marathon earlier in the year.

Kipruto, who will be testing his grit for the first time in the official Kenyan colours, has pledged to stamp authority in his maiden assignment for the East African nation.

“I consider it a special honour to compete for my country in the Olympics because I’ll be doing it for the first time in my career. This means a lot to me,” Kipruto remarked.

It will also be the first time he will be involved in a team effort having battled on his own in the past. Kipruto, however, said he is not quaking in the boots at the thought of navigating the unfamiliar waters.

“It will be a whole new experience because I’m used to battling for individual effort as opposed to teamwork. I’m trying as much as I can to learn the new ropes.”

Kipruto said he is not under the pump to stamp his authority in Paris.

“I don’t feel any pressure since I know what the race entails. I have participated in many other races and, therefore, appreciate the significance of remaining calm.

“I’m ready for the challenge and up to the task ahead,” Kipruto stated. Kipruto said he will adopt a mental strategy in the cut-throat competition while acknowledging he will require a lot of resilience and fortitude to get the job done and dusted.

“The secret is to maintain your composure until the very end of the marathon. Therefore, it is crucial to always forget everything when you are at the starting line. The race is 42km long and requires one to exercise a lot of patience and refrain.”

The athlete said he draws inundated inspiration from his childhood hero Eliud Kipchoge whom he will unfortunately trail his guns on this time around.

(04/18/2024) Views: 253 ⚡AMP
by Tony Mballa
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Shock as Geoffrey Kamworor withdraws from London Marathon

Multiple World Cross-country champion Geoffrey Kamworor has withdrawn from the London Marathon.

Three-time World Cross-Country champion Geoffrey Kamworor has pulled out of the 2024 London Marathon due to persistent hip flexor irritation. 

The Kenyan long-distance runner, who clinched second place at last year’s London Marathon, confirmed that his current physical condition has hampered his training and ultimately led to his withdrawal.

His absence is a blow to the marathon, where he was among the favorites to win.

The athlete's management team noted that Kamworor had been experiencing discomfort during his training sessions and opted for a conservative approach to avoid long-term damage. 

They confirmed that he did not travel to London and would be undergoing further medical evaluation and treatment.

As the elite runners adjust to the news of Kamworor’s withdrawal, the spotlight shifts to the champions of the recent Boston Marathon wheelchair races, who are now heading to London with hopes of back-to-back victories in the Abbott World Marathon Majors.

Among them is Britain’s Eden Rainbow-Cooper, fresh from her historic win at Boston, where she became the first Briton to clinch a wheelchair race at the prestigious event. 

Rainbow-Cooper, who finished third at last year’s London Marathon, shared her excitement about competing again in her home country. 

“Winning in Boston was surreal, and competing in London feels like coming home. I’m ready to give my all once again,” she said.

Rainbow-Cooper’s victory in Boston was a remarkable feat, finishing the course in 1:35:11, ahead of seasoned competitors like Manuela Schär of Switzerland and Australia’s Madison de Rozario, the defending London Marathon champion.

In the men’s wheelchair category, Swiss athlete Marcel Hug is also eyeing another major win after setting a new course record in Boston.

Despite a crash at Mile 18, Hug completed the race in an impressive time of 1:15:33, continuing his dominant streak with 11 consecutive marathon victories.

(04/17/2024) Views: 320 ⚡AMP
by Festus Chuma
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TCS London Marathon

TCS London Marathon

The London Marathon was first run on March 29, 1981 and has been held in the spring of every year since 2010. It is sponsored by Virgin Money and was founded by the former Olympic champion and journalist Chris Brasher and Welsh athlete John Disley. It is organized by Hugh Brasher (son of Chris) as Race Director and Nick Bitel...

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Edna Kiplagat opens up on how she managed to seal a podium finish in Boston

Kiplagat is still flying high at 44 years of age and is not showing signs of slowing down.

At 44, many athletes would be winding down their careers or already retired. However, for Edna Kiplagat, the journey continues.

The Kenyan distance running icon continues to defy age and expectations, delivering a stellar performance at the Boston Marathon on Monday that left spectators in awe.

Returning in the iconic streets of Boston, Kiplagat crossed the finish line in a remarkable 2:23:21, clinching a well-deserved third-place finish. What makes her achievement even more impressive is the fact that she was competing against athletes nearly half her age.

Like a vintage wine that only improves with time, Kiplagat's career trajectory showcases that age is merely a number. Her unwavering passion for the sport and relentless work ethic have enabled her to remain at the forefront of distance running, challenging and even outperforming her younger counterparts.

In a recent interview with KTN News, Kiplagat shared her reflections on the Boston Marathon and the challenges she encountered during the race.

"It was an exhilarating race, and I am delighted that we achieved a Kenyan podium sweep," Kiplagat remarked. "The competition was intense, with many athletes at their peak. I knew I had to be at my absolute best to remain competitive."

Expressing her gratitude for her podium finish, Kiplagat acknowledged the rigorous training that prepared her for the demanding race. "Standing on the podium is a testament to hard work, dedication, and ultimately, God's grace," she added.

Kiplagat's journey in the world of marathon running is nothing short of inspirational. She first burst onto the big city marathon scene by winning the New York Marathon io her debut 14 years ago. Since then, her career has been a fairytale journey across continents and championships.

With two World Marathon Majors trophies to her name and two World Championship marathon titles, Kiplagat's accolades speak volumes about her prowess as a distance runner. Her personal best of 2:19:50, achieved at the 2012 London Marathon, stands as a testament to her exceptional talent.

While many athletes might find it challenging to maintain peak performance over the years, Kiplagat continues to defy expectations. Known for her late-race surges, she has a knack for dramatically overtaking her opponents in the latter stages of a race, leaving them trailing in her wake.

As the world continues to marvel at her achievements, Edna Kiplagat remains a timeless legend in the world of distance running, inspiring generations of athletes with her resilience, determination, and unyielding spirit.

(04/17/2024) Views: 275 ⚡AMP
by Mark Kinyanjui
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Hellen Obiri executes proper strategy to defend her Boston Marathon crown as Kenyan women sweep race

Hellen Obiri made it back-to-back titles at Boston Marathon with fellow Kenyans Sharon Lokedi and Edna Kiplagat completing a podium sweep.

Kenya’s Hellen Obiri defended her Boston Marathon title after running a tactical race to fend off the challenge of compatriot Sharon Lokedi on Monday April 15.

It was an all Kenyan affair as Obiri led a 1-2-3 for the country with Lokedi finishing second while veteran Edna Kiplagat managed an impressive third place but the three waited until late before showing their claws.

Obiri, Lokedi and Kiplagat would exchange leads but stayed close to each other in the final stretch.

The 44-year-old Kiplagat appeared set to pull an upset, and perhaps win her third title in Boston, but she ran out of gas when Obiri and Lokedi pulled away.

Obiri then waited until the tail end to sprint away from Lokedi to win her second straight title in a time of 2:22:37 and defend her crown.

Obiri became the sixth woman to make it back-to-back titles in Boston in what is now becoming her favorite course after her maiden marathon victory last year.

The New York Marathon champion has effectively sealed her place in Team Kenya to the Paris Olympics after being named in the final team of six over a week ago.

(04/15/2024) Views: 316 ⚡AMP
by Joel Omotto
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Who is Sisay Lemma, the winner of the 2024 Boston Marathon?

Sisay Lemma was born in 1990 in the Oromia Region of Ethiopia. He is the winner of the 2024 Boston Marathon, with a time of 2:06:17.

Sisay Lemma is an Ethiopian long-distance runner who specializes in the marathon. He is the winner of the 2024 Boston Marathon, with a time of 2:06:17.

This was his first victory at the Boston Marathon, but he has previously won other major marathons, including the 2021 London Marathon and the 2023 Valencia Marathon. Lemma is also a three-time bronze medalist at the World Athletics Championships.

Lemma was born in 1990 in the Oromia Region of Ethiopia. He began running at a young age, and quickly showed promise. He made his international debut in 2013, and won his first major marathon in 2018, when he won the Rotterdam Marathon.

Lemma is known for his strong finishing kick. He has often won races by coming from behind in the final stages. He is also a very consistent runner, and has never finished a marathon outside of the top 10.

Lemma is a rising star in the world of marathon running. He is still relatively young, and has many years of good running ahead of him. He is a strong contender for medals at the major marathons, and the Olympic Games.

Here are some of Sisay Lemma’s career highlights:

Winner of the 2024 Boston Marathon

Winner of the 2021 London Marathon

Winner of the 2023 Valencia Marathon

Three-time bronze medalist at the World Athletics Championships

Winner of the 2018 Rotterdam Marathon

Personal best of 2:01:48 for the marathon

The Boston Marathon: The King of Marathons

The Boston Marathon is an annual foot race held in Boston, Massachusetts, United States. It is considered to be the most prestigious marathon in the world, and is one of the world’s oldest continuously run sporting events. The race is traditionally held on the third Monday in April, and it follows a 26.2-mile (42.2 km) route through the streets of Boston and the surrounding towns.

The Boston Marathon was first held in 1897, and it was inspired by the success of the marathon race at the 1896 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. The race was originally intended to be a qualifier for the 1897 Summer Olympics, but it quickly became a popular event in its own right. The Boston Marathon has been held every year since 1918, with the only exceptions being in 1918 due to World War I, and in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Boston Marathon is known for its challenging course, which features several hills, including the infamous Heartbreak Hill at mile 20. The race is also known for its large and enthusiastic crowds, which line the streets throughout the course to cheer on the runners.

The Boston Marathon has been won by some of the greatest marathon runners in history, including Dick Hoyt, Bill Rodgers, Joan Benoit Samuelson, and Kathrine Switzer. The race has also been the site of several world records, including the first sub-2:00 marathon in 1978 by Geoffrey Hirt.

The Boston Marathon is more than just a race; it is a tradition and an institution. The race is a symbol of Boston’s resilience and spirit, and it is a source of pride for the city’s residents. The Boston Marathon is also a major fundraiser for charity, and it has raised millions of dollars for local charities over the years.

(04/15/2024) Views: 323 ⚡AMP
by Laura Islas
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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German double in Hannover

Amanal Petros and Domenika Mayer achieved a German double on home soil at the Hannover Marathon on Sunday (14) with both athletes smashing the course records in the process.

Petros slashed almost one minute from his course record of 2:07:02, successfully defending his title in 2:06:05 despite the blustery conditions on offer in Hannover to win by over one minute from Kenyans Boaz Kipkemei (2:07:06) and Victor Kiplimo (2:09:58).

“I did not expect to run 2:06:05 today. Without the wind I think I would have been around one minute faster,” said Petros who lowered his German record to 2:04:58 in the Berlin Marathon last September.

Petros, who will compete for Germany at the Olympic Games in the marathon in Paris for the second time later this summer, kept something in reserve for the closing stages. He covered the last 2.195km in a fast 6:18 which yielded a negative second half split of 62:54.   

In the women’s race, Mayer had the company of Kenyan veteran Sharon Cherop, the 2011 Boston Marathon champion, until the last five kilometers. Mayer maintained her pace in the latter stages for victory in a course record of 2:23:50 although she missed her lifetime best by an agonizing three seconds. 

“I am really happy with my race. I was surprised that Sharon held on for so long, but I just concentrated on myself and ran my own race. I am now looking forward to the Olympic Marathon. It will of course be a very different race on a hilly course and without pacers,” said Mayer who took almost two minutes off the previous course record of 2:25:45.

Cherop faded back to second but the 40-year-old was also under the previous course record with her time of 2:24:41. 

(04/15/2024) Views: 271 ⚡AMP
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ADAC Hannover Marathon

ADAC Hannover Marathon

It is not only the gripping competition that makes the marathon in Hannover so captivating, but also the exceptionally attractive side programme.With numerous samba bands and musicians accompanying the athletes along their sightseeing tour through the city, a feel-good mood is guaranteed on the course. The city will be transformed with a mix of musical entertainment, shows and activities that...

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How to Watch the 2024 Boston Marathon

The world’s oldest annual marathon is back for its 128th edition.

On Monday, April 15, the World Marathon Majors will return stateside to the 2024 Boston Marathon. In its 128th year, the world’s oldest annual marathon features must-see storylines, including the return of defending women’s champion Hellen Obiri and two-time men’s winner Evans Chebet.

The point-to-point race is scheduled to begin in Hopkinton, Massachusetts, and ends in the Back Bay neighborhood of Boston. The weather forecast for Patriots’ Day is showing slightly warmer temperatures than average in the city. The conditions could make race day more challenging on a course famous for its hills (we ranked Boston as the second-toughest of the six World Marathon Majors).

Here’s everything you need to know about this year’s race. 

How to watch the 2024 Boston Marathon

ESPN2 will broadcast the Boston Marathon from 8:30 a.m. ET to 12:30 p.m. ET. You can also live stream the race with an ESPN+ subscription, which costs $10.99 a month. 

For those tuning in from Boston, live coverage will be provided by WCVB beginning at 4:00 a.m. ET and lasting throughout the day.

Boston Marathon start times (ET)

Men’s wheelchair division—9:02 a.m.

Women’s wheelchair division—9:05 a.m.

Men’s elite race—9:37 a.m.

Women’s elite race—9:47 a.m.

Para athletics division—9:50 a.m.

First wave—10 a.m.

Second wave—10:25 a.m.

Third wave—10:50 a.m.

Fourth wave—11:15 a.m.

Race preview

This year’s elite race comes with added high stakes for many international athletes. Countries that don’t host Olympic Trials for the marathon are currently in the national team selection process. A standout performance in Boston could be a game-changer for athletes looking to represent their country in Paris this summer. 

Women’s race

On the women’s side, Boston podium contenders Hellen Obiri and Sharon Lokedi were included in the shortlist of marathoners under national team consideration by Athletics Kenya. 

Obiri, 34, is set to return to Boston after a stellar 2023 campaign. Last year, the On Athletics Club runner won the Boston Marathon and the New York City Marathon. A former track standout with two world championship titles, Obiri aims to continue her winning streak on Monday. 

Lokedi, 30, is looking to top the podium at a key moment in her career. The University of Kansas graduate is set to run her first 26.2 since finishing third at the New York City Marathon last fall—a race she won in her marathon debut two years ago. 

Kenya will also be represented by 2022 World Championship silver medalist Judith Korir and two-time Boston Marathon champion Edna Kiplagat, among other standouts. 

The Ethiopian contingent should be strong as well. Ababel Yeshaneh finished second at Boston in 2022 and fourth in 2023. Plus, 2:17 marathoner Tadu Teshome will be one to watch in her Boston debut. 

In the weeks after the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in February, more Americans were added to the field. Sara Hall, 40, enters the race after finishing fifth in a new American masters record (2:26:06) at the Trials in Orlando, Florida. 2015 Boston champion Caroline Rotich, 39, joins the field after placing sixth at the Trials. Jenny Simpson, 37, also entered after dropping out in her marathon debut in Orlando. And keep an eye out for 2018 Boston Marathon champion Des Linden, 40, and Emma Bates, 31, who finished fifth in Boston last year. 

Men’s race

Evans Chebet is looking for a hat trick. Last year, the Kenyan became the first athlete to repeat as men’s champion since Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot won three in a row between 2006 and 2008. In the process, the 35-year-old took down two-time Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge in Boston. 

His biggest challenger will likely be Sisay Lemma of Ethiopia, who is returning after a breakthrough season in 2023. In December, Lemma, 33, won the Valencia Marathon in 2:01:48, making him the fourth-fastest marathoner in history. Lemma also won the Runkara International Half Marathon in 1:01:09, a new personal best. 

Gabriel Geay, last year’s Boston runner-up, is returning to the field on Monday. The 27-year-old from Tanzania is coming off a fifth-place finish at the Valencia Marathon. 

Other runners to watch include 2023 New York City runner-up Albert Korir; Shura Kitata, who placed third in New York last year; and Zouhair Talbi, who finished fifth in Boston last year. 

The American men’s field also grew after the Olympic Trials with the addition of Elkanah Kibet and Sam Chelanga. Kibet finished fourth in Orlando in a 2:10:02 personal best, and after dropping out after mile 18 of the Trials, Chelanga will aim for redemption in Boston. They join 50K world record-holder CJ Albertson and the BAA’s Matt McDonald in the elite race. 

(04/14/2024) Views: 352 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Cooper Teare, Fotyen Tesfay Win 2024 Boston 5K Titles

Tesfay, of Ethiopia, ran a course record time as Boston Marathon weekend got underway on Saturday. 

It was a near-perfect morning as racing got underway for the long Boston Marathon weekend. The Boston 5K started things off, followed later by the B.A.A. Invitational Mile. Ethiopia’s Fotyen Tesfay and Cooper Teare of the U.S. claimed wins in the 5K, while Americans Krissy Gear and Casey Comber took home wins in the mile.

Tesfay runs a course record; Teare kicks to the win in the 5K

Tesfay rolled to victory in the women’s race at the Boston 5K. She controlled the entire race, running a time of 14:45, four seconds ahead of the previous course record set in 2022 by Senbere Teferi.

Tesfay took the race out hard from the gun, coming through the first mile in 4:43, a half second ahead of Kenya’s Emmaculate Acholi and a full eight seconds ahead of the rest of the field. She extended that advantage through the second mile and to the finish, winning by 13 seconds over second place Acholi, who ran 14:59.

“I came to break the course record, which I did, and I am so happy,” Tesfay said after the race.

Esther Gitahi of Kenya was third in 15:08, and Annie Rodenfels was the top American finisher, also running 15:08 for fourth.

The men’s race featured a sprint to the finish with Teare clocking a time of 13:38 to take the win over fellow American distance star Drew Hunter. 

The men ran in a pack for much of the race. Eduardo Herrera of Mexico made the initial move in the final half mile and opened up about 10 meters on the field, but Teare and a few others were able to close the gap as they made the final turn onto Charles Street.

“If I can be in contact coming into the last straight, I think I can put myself in a pretty good spot,” Teare said of his strategy coming into the race. 

From there, Teare used some good finishing speed and powered to the line to grab the win by a second over Hunter and Herrera, who wound up second and third, respectively.

Gear repeats as mile champ; Comber takes the win

For a second straight year, Krissy Gear won the women’s B.A.A. Invitational Mile. The U.S. champion in the steeplechase last year, Gear was able to successfully defend her title in the race. She unleashed a terrific kick in the final quarter mile to win in 4:42.45—a few ticks off her winning time from 2023.

Sweden’s Yolanda Ngarambe also had a strong kick, but ran out of room, taking second in 4:43.64.

In the men’s race, Comber took the title, running a time of 4:07.31. After a second place finish in 2023, Comber moved up to the top spot a year later.

The field ran down Great Britain’s Henry McLuckie, who led through the first two laps of the course. Comber proved to have the best kick in the end, outlasting second place Aaron Ahl of Canada, who ran 4:08.04.

(04/14/2024) Views: 273 ⚡AMP
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B.A.A. 5K

B.A.A. 5K

The B.A.A. 5K began in 2009, and became an instant hit among runners from far and wide. Viewed by many as the “calm before the storm,” the Sunday of Marathon weekend traditionally was for shopping, loading up on carbohydrates at the pasta dinner, and most importantly- resting. But now, runners of shorter distances, and even a few marathoners looking for...

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Can you bet on Marathons? The answer is “Maybe”

Do you remember the excitement you felt watching elite athletes stomping their feet against the ground in rhythmic paces, the memories of the victories, the failures, the tense moments that kept you in suspense, wondering if an athlete would make the finish line?

 

What if I told you that experience could be heightened tenfold with the opportunity to place bets on those outcomes? Can I bet on marathons? That's precisely what we'll explore in this article.

 

It's natural to question if sports betting extends to marathons. While sportsbooks traditionally cover a wide range of track and field events to cater to diverse sports enthusiasts, betting on marathons has been a rare feature. However, all that changed with a significant development in 2023.

 

The Boston Marathon Breakthrough

In 2023, the track community buzzed excitedly as Bovada, one of the leading online sportsbooks, made a groundbreaking decision. It was the first time a sports betting site would venture into marathon betting. This decision surprised everyone, raising eyebrows and sparking discussions among sports enthusiasts and bettors alike. The backstory of how Bovada ventured into marathon betting is intriguing and unexpected. It all began with a tweet from LetsRun.com, a popular website dedicated to race news and analysis. The tweet mentioned the lack of betting options for the Boston Marathon. Bovada saw this as an opportunity to enter and establish a presence in the market.

 

Seizing the Opportunity

Recognizing the potential for a new and untapped market, Bovada leveraged the power of social media in a bold statement responding to LetsRun's tweet. They would indeed offer betting odds for the upcoming Boston Marathon. The unexpected move shocked the sports betting industry as news spread rapidly. The inclusion of marathon betting on Bovada's platform marked a significant milestone for the sports site. Marathon fans and bettors suddenly had a new way to engage and benefit from their favorite races. The possibilities were endless, from predicting the winner to wagering on finishing times. 

 

The Impact of Bovada's Decision

Bovada covered the Boston Marathon in 2023 for the first time after a tweet from LetsRun.com initiated the conversation about marathon betting possibilities. This decision opened up new avenues for bettors and instigated discussions to move marathon betting mainstream. As other sportsbooks note, the opportunities in marathon betting are lucrative for expansion. It would indeed be a promising future for bettors and running enthusiasts alike.

 

The Future of Marathon Betting

So, what exactly does the future hold for marathon betting? While it's impossible to predict with certainty, we are sure that the industry will keep evolving to embrace new possibilities. As more sportsbooks recognize the potential of marathon betting, we can expect a broader range of betting options. Imagine being able to bet on significant marathons like Boston and New York, as well as local races worldwide.

 

Embracing Innovation

The sports betting industry has always been known for its innovation and adaptability. The inclusion of marathon betting only follows a natural progression of the trend. New markets and diverse interests allow sportsbooks to expand their offerings while providing opportunities for bettors. Whether you're a seasoned bettor or a casual fan, marathon betting offers a unique opportunity to engage with the sport in a new way.

 

The Importance of Responsible Betting

Despite the excitement surrounding marathon betting, it's important to remember the importance of responsible gambling. While betting can add a new layer of excitement to watching sporting events, it should never be taken irresponsibly. Regulations and guidelines must be set to ensure responsible gambling practices. If you ever find yourself overly addicted to any form of gambling, you should seek professional help. Marathon betting can be safe, exciting, and rewarding with the right approach. 

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Is marathon betting legal?

The legality of marathon betting varies depending on your location. For many state jurisdictions, sports betting is completely regulated and legal. Always check the laws in your area before betting.

 

2. What types of bets can I place on marathons?

Specific bet types may vary depending on the sportsbook you patronize. Standard options include betting on the overall winner, predicting finishing times and wagering head-to-head matchups between runners.

 

3. How can I find marathon betting markets?

Marathon betting markets are still relatively rare. However, with increasing interest in the sport, more sportsbooks may begin to allow users to place bets. Keep your eye out for major online sportsbooks and news outlets for updates on available markets in your region.

 

4. Is marathon betting only available for elite races like the Boston Marathon?

Elite races like the Boston Marathon may attract more attention from sportsbooks since it launched marathon betting on the global scene. There's still potential for expanding betting markets to include local and regional races.

 

5. Are there any tips for successful marathon betting?

Like other forms of sports betting, research, understand the sport, and bet responsibly. Stay informed about the latest news and developments; these can give you an edge when placing bets.

 

Conclusion

Thanks to Bovada's groundbreaking decision to cover the Boston Marathon, whether you can bet on marathons is now in the right place. Marathon betting is fast becoming a viable option for sports bettors globally. 

 

As the years progress, the potential for marathon betting will improve. So, why add extra excitement with a well-placed bet the next time you tune in to watch a marathon? Just remember to gamble responsibly and enjoy the beauty of the race.

(04/13/2024) Views: 321 ⚡AMP
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Why Evans Chebet missed the Kenya's Olympic marathon team

Evans Chebet's coach Claudio Berardelli has explained why Evans Chebet, one of the most consistent marathoners in the world, was not included in Kenya's Olympic marathon team.

Evans Chebet’s coach Claudio Berardelli has opened up on the former New York City Marathon champion’s current condition and why he did not make the cut to Team Kenya’s Olympic team ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Chebet withdrew from his title defense at last year’s New York City Marathon due to an injury and his coach has noted that the two-time Boston Marathon champion is now doing well.

He has been training well as he gears up for his third title at the Boston Marathon, a feat that would undoubtedly make him one of the greatest and most consistent marathoners.

“The Achilles injury has been bothering him since New York, I mean, he could have run the New York City Marathon so we had to be cautious.

“Here and there we had to lessen some training techniques, especially the tough ones but Evans is experienced and knows how to handle himself.

“I’m counting on his experience and since he has run many races here…but remember, Boston is just Boston and it is not an easy race,” Berardelli told Citius Mag.

The veteran tactician also noted that when Athletics Kenya reached out to Chebet, he was still battling an injury and was unsure about when he would feel better.

Berardelli knew that immediately saying yes would put Chebet under a lot of pressure since he was also training for Boston at the time. However, after the Boston Marathon, if he does well, Chebet would now revisit his chances of competing at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

“When Athletics Kenya asked for the interest from the athletes, Evans was still kind of nursing the injury and was a little bit under pressure because Boston would be his 29th marathon.

“Maybe he didn’t express his 100% interest but of course now he is here and he wants to see how Boston will go.

“If Athletics Kenya can call him after that and have a discussion, it shall be great but if not, he will still be okay since Kenya has very many potential marathoners. Kenya has many strong athletes and it’s a headache for Athletics Kenya to select a team for the marathon,” he said.

(04/13/2024) Views: 238 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Hellen Obiri in her best shape ever heading into the Boston Marathon

Hellen Obiri is bubbling with confidence ahead of the Boston Marathon and feels like she is in her best marathon running shape ever.

Reigning New York City Marathon champion Hellen Obiri is ready to rumble at the Boston Marathon after enjoying her training and working on some of her major undoings.

Speaking to Citius Mag, the defending champion feels like she in her best shape and is ready for the challenge as she eyes a slot in the Olympic team ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

The two-time World 5000m champion disclosed that she has also worked on her bottle-handling technique, an issue that has affected her a lot since she tends to miss taking water at certain points of the race.

“I feel so excited and nothing has changed…I’m so healthy and I’m ready for Monday. I’ve been doing the bottle handling and I am now much better.

“I think I’m in the best marathon shape and we normally compare my training from last year and now I can say I’ve been running so fast and I feel good,” Obiri said.

The former World 10,000m silver medalist also admitted that there is a lot of pressure coming from her fans and friends since she is the defending champion.

She noted that, however, going to the race, she will embrace a strong mindset and give her all since she is also competing against very strong women. Obiri also explained that it would be a great thing if she wins the race because it would place her in a better position to be selected in the Olympic team.

“This year I have a lot of pressure since I’m the defending champion and everyone will be looking at me to see what I’m going to do. I have a big task and I know we have strong ladies here but I will give my best and stay mentally focused.

“Nowadays I’m a bit nervous when starting because I have never raced with some ladies before but I’m trying to do my best to avoid that.

“I think it would be best if I win but I’m sure they will observe how the race will be…this is a marathon and it’s Boston, the course being the same as the Paris 2024 Olympics. However, I want to win,” Obiri said.

(04/13/2024) Views: 221 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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The Dos and Don’ts of Shakeout Runs

Plus, dos and don’ts to keep in mind ahead of race weekend.

A shakeout run a day or two before a half or full marathon is a great way to prime your body for what’s to come. It’s also a great time to make meaningful connections with other runners who trained for months to show up to the start. This is why a host of brands and running groups encourage you to join them for a few easy miles before you toe the line. 

A shakeout run can also provide exactly what you need to calm your race-weekend nerves. 

“If you’re going to run with other people, you should be able to hold a full conversation without huffing and puffing at all,” says Amanda Nurse, owner and founder of Wellness and Run Coaching, and 25-time marathoner.

Booth agrees, suggesting you pay attention to your breathing rate and muscle activation, as burning muscles can also indicate you’re running too fast. Think of your shakeout run effort as no faster than your slowest long run, adds Booth, who recommends aiming for a 3 out of 10 effort on the rate of perceived exertion scale, and staying within zone 1 or 2 if you’re monitoring your heart rate.

Most importantly, remember that a group setting can bring high energy, but being a smart runner means knowing and sticking with your own pace. “Nobody wins the shakeout run, no one wins the warmup, and that’s what you’ve got to remember,” Booth says.

Don’t Spend Too Much Time On Your Feet

Account for the time you spend walking around and attending other race-related events over the weekend, so you can limit how much time you spend on your feet. McKirdy recommends choosing at most three race weekend events, especially if you’re running in a big city race like Boston, New York, or Chicago. 

“It’s really easy to walk miles and miles on your feet the two or three days leading into the race,” says McKirdy. If it’s a walkable city, you can easily add thousands of steps to your day, which can be a shock to your body if you don’t typically walk that much, he adds. And that can affect your race performance.

Do Stick With Your Training Schedule

“If you don’t typically run the day before your long run or workout and that’s more of a cross-training day or a recovery day, keep it the same,” says Nurse. That means if a shakeout run won’t feel good to you, skip it. 

Walking for up to 30 minutes, cycling at a low intensity for about 10 minutes, or running a 5K at an easy pace two days before a race are great alternatives to a shakeout run the day before, Nurse says. Just make sure you take the day off the next day, she adds. 

Don’t Judge Your Potential By Your Shakeout Run Performance

Remember: The shakeout run is designed to help you “shake out” your muscles, which requires an easy pace. It’s also a good time to shake out any race jitters, so you can get into a positive mindset, if you haven’t done so already, for race day. It’s not the time to see how fast you can run and use it as a race day predictor.

If you do want to get the legs turning over faster though, Nurse recommends adding a couple of 20- to 30-second strides at a quicker pace, followed by a very slow pace or even a walk to the end of your shakeout run. This can help ease your nerves around performance, she says. 

To help you get the most of your shakeout, here are the benefits you can gain, plus a few dos and don’ts to keep in mind.

The Benefits of Shakeout Runs

A shakeout run means clocking a few miles at an easy pace a day or two before a half or full marathon. With a few precautions in mind, it can benefit you both mentally and physically.

“There’s activation, there’s mobility, there’s recovery, and all those things come together to create a great performance,” says Emily Booth, member of the NASM scientific advisory board, NASM-certified personal trainer, marathoner, and eight-time Boston Marathon finisher. Shakeout runs fall into the activation category. They can help promote blood flow, neurological activation, and neuromuscular activation, which is really helpful for runners who’ve been tapering for a marathon, Booth explains. 

In short, shakeout runs are great for improving your mind-body connection the day before a race, helping you set a rhythm that will come in handy on race day. Plus, these quick and easy runs get your muscles ready to go for your race performance. For those who’ve spent a long time sitting while traveling via car or plane before a race, it’s extremely beneficial because a shakeout run can help loosen tense muscles, Booth adds. 

Shakeout runs are also known for bringing runners together and fostering a sense of community, especially the day before big races like the Boston Marathon or New York City Marathon. “There’s this unspoken energy about meeting with people, sometimes it’s described as electric and that emotion can be very uplifting,” says James McKirdy, the founder and head coach of McKirdy Training. Plus, it’s an experience you likely won’t forget.

Dos and Don’ts of Shakeout Runs

Do Go Slow

Consider your body’s glycogen stores as your personal energy bank account—you can only make so many withdrawals before you have to refill your account, says Booth. While it’s important to go for a shakeout run at least the day before a marathon to activate your muscles, stay aware of your pace, so you don’t over do it and have trouble replenishing your glycogen stores before your event, she adds. This means running your shakeout at an easy pace. 

(04/13/2024) Views: 291 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Here Are the Celebrities Running the 2024 Boston Marathon

Zdeno Chara and Meb are a few of the big names toeing the line in Hopkinton this year.Every year, the Boston Marathon attracts celebrities from various fields, from athletes to actors, and this year is no different. Last year, former Boston Red Sox players Brock Holt and Ryan Dempster took to the streets alongside legendary quarterback Doug Flutie, who won the Heisman while at Boston College.

This year, things kick off with former Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski serving as grandmaster for the race. Gronkowski will also receive the Patriots' Award from the Boston Athletic Association, which honors a “patriotic, philanthropic, and inspirational” individual who “fosters goodwill and sportsmanship.”

This year, spectators will see not only a few returning faces in the streets but also a few first-timers. So, what notable names can we expect to see lining up in Hopkinton this year for the Boston Marathon? 1

Meb KeflezighiMeb Keflezighi, now with New Balance, announced his return to the race earlier this year. In 2014, Keflezighi became the first American to win the men’s race since 1983.

Keflezighi, 48, will run the race to support his MEB Foundation, which supports “health, education, and fitness worldwide.”

“I will be returning to the streets of Boston, taking on the prestigious race and celebrating my victory from 2014,” Keflezighi said on Instagram. “Together, we can light the path for those in need and show the world the power of compassion and community. Let’s run with purpose and inspire others to join us in spreading kindness and hope.”2

Zdeno CharaChara, the legendary Bruins hockey player who stands a mighty six feet, nine inches and helped bring the Stanley Cup to Boston in 2011, is again running in support of the Thomas E. Smith Foundation and the Hoyt Foundation.

“I’m excited to be running the 2024 Boston Marathon to raise money and awareness for @thomasesmithfoundation & @teamhoytofficial!,” Chara said on Instagram. “These two amazing foundations impact the lives of those living with disabilities through financial and emotional support.”3

Nicolas KieferKiefer’s Boston Marathon run will see the former tennis pro complete the last of the big six, having previously run Berlin, Chicago, London, New York, and Tokyo.

Kiefer, who won silver in the 2004 Olympics, wrote on Instagram that he felt “extremely good” during his final training run before the marathon.4

Chris NikicAt 22, Chris Nikic completed his first Boston Marathon in 2021. He is the first person with Down Syndrome to finish the Hawaii Ironman and all Big Six marathons. Nikic aims to improve his Boston time to 5:35 in 2024, his third time running the race.

“Last long run (20 miles) before @bostonmarathon next weekend and @londonmarathon in 2 weeks,” Nikic said on Instagram on Sunday. “Looking to see if I can do better each marathon.”5

Daniel HummDaniel Humm, the chef behind NYC’s three-Michelin star restaurant Eleven Madison Park, hoped to run the New York Marathon but had to drop out due to an Achilles injury. Instead, he will be running in Boston, hoping to beat his time in the same race last year when he ran a 2:58:53.6

Matt WilpersFamed Peloton instructor Matt Wilpers will be running the marathon as a long-time personal goal and as a way to inspire others as he does during his popular workouts.

“My success is when my athletes are successful, so if I can push them to be stronger, better versions of themselves by going out and leading by example, like, I love this stuff,” Wilpers told Boston.com. “I’ll have fun racing a marathon, I’ll have fun racing a 5K. Whatever it is, this is what I do for fun. And so if this is going to get people excited, let’s go do it.”

(04/13/2024) Views: 403 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Benson Kipruto reveals what representing Kenya at Paris 2024 Olympics would mean to him

Kipruto has never represented Kenya at a global championships, but the fifth fastest marathoner in history hopes to shine bright at the Paris 2024 Olympics.

Reigning Tokyo marathon champion Benson Kipruto has revealed what it would mean for him to represent Kenya at the upcoming Paris 2024 Olympic games.

Kipruto, 33, is approaching the twilight of his career, but even though he has won quite a lot in his career, has never participated in either the World Championships or Olympic games.

He also won the Boston Marathon in 2021, the Chicago Marathon in 2022 and has been named on Kenya’s provisional marathon squad for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Athletics Kenya already handed the list of five athletes to NOC-K who will later on trim down the number to three, with Kipruto part of the quintet. 

The others are defending champion Eliud Kipchoge , 2022 Abu Dhabi Marathon champion Timothy Kiplagat,  2023 Prague Marathon champion Alexander Mutiso and Vincent Kipkemboi who finished second at the 2023 Berlin Marathon.

Speaking on a documentary released by World Athletics, Kipruto has expressed just how much it would mean for him to don the national colors at the quadrennial tournament for the first time.

“Competing at the Olympics will mean alot to me having in mind that I have never ran for my Kenyan team,” Kipruto said on World Athletics.

“If I qualify, I will do my best to represent my country. It would be something new to me. I am learning. I will be privileged to represent my country for the first time.

“It would mean so much. I love my country.”

Representing Kenya would naturally put a lot of pressure on him to do well, but Kipruto is adamant he is not feeling it as the team is expected to do well at the games anyway.

“I do not have any pressure because I understand what it means. I am the one running so I know you do not have to (go through) pressure but my followers and my teammates, I tell them I am ready.”

(04/12/2024) Views: 273 ⚡AMP
by Mark Kinyanjui
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Sharon Lokedi: How the Kenyan marathon star is sketching her strategy for victory at Boston Marathon

Sharon Lokedi is aiming for victory at the Boston Marathon where she will be facing elite rivals.

2022 New York City Marathon champion Sharon Lokedi has rapidly ascended to the pinnacle of long-distance running with her sights firmly set on the 128th Boston Marathon.

Amidst a field brimming with talent, Lokedi's journey from her marathon debut to becoming a favorite in Boston illustrates not only her athletic prowess but also her unique approach to managing the pressures of elite competition.

"Before I get to a race, there’s so much tension and anxiety. I try to remain present," Lokedi shared as per Run.

This practice, recommended by her sports psychologist in July 2023, has helped her maintain calm and focus, vital for someone whose career in running has been anything but typical.

Surprising herself and the athletic world, she clinched victory at her first marathon attempt in New York in 2022 with a time of 2:23:23, joining the ranks of debut winners in the storied race. 

Despite facing an injury that sidelined her from the Boston Marathon last April she returned to the global marathon scene last November, securing a third-place finish in New York, a testament to her resilience and tenacity.

The 30-year-old Kenyan runner's story is a blend of innate talent and serendipity having never envisioned a professional career in athletics. 

From her humble beginnings running at age 12 to training alongside Olympic champions in Kaptagat, Kenya, Lokedi's ascent in the sport is, by her own admission, "a miracle."

Training at altitudes close to 8,000 feet, Lokedi has pushed her limits, clocking upwards of 140 miles a week in preparation for Boston. 

Under the guidance of her coach Haas, she has emphasized hill training, a crucial component for tackling the notoriously challenging Boston course. 

"I think she’ll be in the mix," said Haas, highlighting Lokedi's diligent preparation and positive mindset.

Lokedi's connection to the running community, both in Kenya and her second home in Flagstaff, Arizona, has been a source of strength and inspiration. 

The camaraderie she shares with competitors, including close friend and fellow Kenyan Hellen Obiri underscores a spirit of mutual respect and friendship that transcends rivalry. 

"Racing with Sharon, it’s really good for me," Obiri remarked.

The Boston Marathon promises a historic showdown in the women's elite field, featuring luminaries such as Obiri, Tadu Teshome, Hiwot Gebremariam, and Edna Kiplagat, alongside promising American contenders like Emma Bates and Sara Hall.

"Sharon has been my good friend since 2019. She’s a lovely girl," Obiri added, highlighting the deep bonds formed between athletes at the highest levels of competition.

For Lokedi and Obiri, the Boston Marathon is not just another race, it is an opportunity to showcase their skills, support each other, and celebrate their friendship, irrespective of the outcome.

As she prepares to toe the line in Boston, her message is clear: "I know I’m strong. I want to come into the race knowing that anything is possible."

(04/11/2024) Views: 270 ⚡AMP
by Festus Chuma
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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