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Articles tagged #Cancer
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Gloria Ratti, ‘first lady’ of the Boston Marathon, dies at 90

The Boston Athletic Association is mourning the loss of vice president, historian, and archivist Gloria Ratti, who died Saturday at 90 “after a courageous battle with cancer,” the organization said in a statement.

Ms. Ratti, a South Boston native, served the BAA and Boston Marathon runners in a variety of roles over more than half a century of involvement with the organization, according to the statement.

“Gloria in essence was the First Lady of our sport, no matter where she went,” Guy Morse, former BAA executive director and a longtime colleague to Ms. Ratti, said in the statement.

“From champions to common runners, Gloria personally cared for everyone and represented the human side of running,” he said. “It was her mission to make the Boston Marathon more than a single-day event; she strived to make it a personal experience for so many. She did that, but also was the moral authority that helped propel the entire organization forward.”

(07/25/2021) Views: 87 ⚡AMP
by Nick Stoico, The Boston Globe
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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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How to Be a Super Commuter

The average American commutes nearly an hour per day. That adds up to nine days a year. But your trip to work doesn’t have to involve cramming your face into someone’s armpit on a packed train or suppressing road rage on a clogged freeway. Make like these four professionals and turn it into a mini adventure.

Nicholas Thompson

Editor in Chief at Wired, New York City

“My boss is Anna Wintour,” Thompson says. “I’m supposed to look good.” But at the risk of mussing his hair, he runs nine miles round-trip between his home in Brooklyn and his Manhattan office nearly every day, no matter the weather. Thompson does a marathon once or twice a year, and these daily jaunts are a big training help. “I’m able to stay in shape without having to find time in the day for it,” he says. “I get to relax and run twice a day. It’s a nice break.” Plus, he hasn’t bought a monthly transit pass in years. 

Make your routine efficient. Thompson covers his one-way distance in 35 minutes on foot. And his shower routine is spartan—in and out in five minutes. 

Plan ahead. Thompson keeps a few full outfits at the office and runs with a fanny pack (even though it slows him down by five to seven seconds per mile, according to Strava) to hold his keys, wallet, and phone.

Steal family time. “Showering at the gym means I don’t have to shower in the morning before I go, which means a few extra minutes with my kids.”

Beware of tourists. “The dangers are selfie sticks, cars driving the wrong direction down one-way streets, wedding photo shoots, and people getting out of cars. But it’s like 90 percent selfie sticks.”

Drew Myers

Founder of Banyan, Seattle 

Myers’s commute lines up with his general ethos: an aversion to waiting and an affinity for wide-open spaces. He may love his ride to work more than anyone in the world. Since 2006, he’s been hopping on a jet ski from Mercer Island and zipping across Lake Washington to his office—passing everyone stuck in traffic on Interstate 90. Driving would take 30 minutes, but jet skiing takes about ten from dock to desk. “There’s nobody out there. It’s totally free,” Myers says. 

Don’t fall in. But just in case, make sure you have the best computer drybag out there. “I could throw my Drycase in the water and it would be fine,” Myers says.

Embrace bad weather. “For the most part, I do it even in the pouring rain,” he says. He keeps his work clothes dry under head-to-toe waterproof gear.

Safety first. Myers always wears a life jacket. And he only commutes eight months of the year—in the winter it gets dark at 4:30 P.M., making for a potentially dangerous crossing. 

Cassidy Doucette

Nurse practitioner at Huntsman Cancer Institute, Salt Lake City

Doucette’s car usually sits on the street. For the past nine years, she’s biked five miles round-trip to and from the hospital for convenience and personal enjoyment, but also to reduce her impact on the environment. Her route cuts through the University of Utah and offers uninterrupted views of the Wasatch Mountains. “Unless my errands require transporting large objects, I’m mostly able to bike anywhere I need to go,” she says. 

Start the day off right. “I work with cancer patients. It’s emotionally and mentally challenging. Those 20 minutes on my bike in the morning give me perspective and goodness before a ten-hour shift.”

Watch out for pedestrians. “College kids looking down at their phones are my biggest obstacle.” 

Stay organized. Doucette leaves shoes at work and carries her post-shower clothes in a Patagonia Black Hole packing cube to keep them tidy in transit. 

Phil Hitch

Director of product development at MSR, Seattle

Hitch commutes an hour and fifteen minutes each way in ultimate Pacific Northwest style: he bikes four and a half miles from his home on Bainbridge Island to the dock, hops on a ferry to downtown Seattle, then rides another two and a half miles to the office. 

Consider it a workout. “I get an hour in the saddle every day, and I don’t have to go to the gym,” Hitch says.

Make no excuses. Hitch commutes approximately 200 days a year. In the winter it’s dark both ways, and there are no streetlights on most of the island. His advice: don’t think too hard, just put on your gear and head out the door. 

Join the crowd. Hitch says there’s a strong contingent of bike-ferry commuters in Seattle: a steady 30 people in winter, and 100-plus in the summer months. If it’s not too rainy for an outdoor commute in Seattle, then it’s not too rainy where you live. 

(07/25/2021) Views: 37 ⚡AMP
by Outside Online
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Long-distance running legend Paula Radcliffe was devastated when her daughter was diagnosed with a rare tumor last year

Paula Radcliffe experienced the full range of highs and lows during her glittering running career. From smashing world records on the streets of the capital, winning the London Marathon three times, to sitting forlornly on the roadside in Athens with her Olympic dream in tatters, she tasted it all.

But nothing could have prepared her for the moment last year when a doctor broke the news that Isla, her 14-year-old daughter, had a tumor growing on one of her ovaries.

“After Isla had undergone a battery of hospital tests, I hoped it would still be something benign even though we had been sent to the oncology department,” recalls Paula.

“But I was given the diagnosis that nobody wants to hear when the doctor said Isla had cancer. The doctor had asked Isla to sit in the waiting room before telling me what it was.

“I burst into tears but had to stop crying and pull myself together before Isla came back into the room a few minutes later. The doctor then explained the diagnosis to Isla.”

It was a shattering blow for Paula, 47, and husband and former coach Gary Lough, who live with Isla and their 10-year-old son Raphael, in Monaco.

Small signs that something might be amiss with Isla’s health had begun a few months earlier.

“In March last year Isla started her period, which was a little more painful than I remember, but we didn’t really think anything of it,” says Paula.

“But by July Isla said she was getting out of breath when having underwater swimming races with Raph in the pool.

“She also didn’t want to go on their trampoline as it gave her a pain in her bladder. After the diagnosis we realized this was because the tumor was bouncing on it.”

By late August, Isla was suffering unexplained bleeding between periods. Paula knew something was wrong so made an appointment with a paediatrician. The next day, at a hospital in nearby Nice, Isla underwent an ultrasound scan and other tests. When the results came in the family were devastated.

Isla had a malignant germ cell tumor, which grows in the cells that form the eggs in the ovary. They are rare and affect roughly one in 200,000 women. In men they can develop in the testicle where the sperm is formed.

“It was hard to take in as everything had happened so fast,” says Paula.

“But the care was phenomenal. A week later, Isla was starting chemo.”

For Isla, having a clear diagnosis was helpful. “A lot of the time leading up to the diagnosis I didn’t feel right, but I didn’t expect it to be cancer,” says Isla. “I thought it would be something like an allergy or an intolerance.

“I didn’t take it in that we were going to a cancer department, and only realized that afterwards. When I went back into the doctor’s room after being examined, mum was crying – although she had been crying a lot the day before that. Then the doctor started to explain it was cancer and I think I was just in a state of shock.”

Because of ongoing Covid restrictions, it was decided Paula would be mostly with Isla at the hospital while Gary took care of Raphael.

“We made a decision which was best for our family,” explains Paula. “I probably cope better with stress and I don’t think he could have seen his little girl going through all this in hospital on a daily basis. But he could still come in every day and cheer her up.”

When Gary visited, Paula would either spend time with Raphael or go for a short run, which she still does most days. “When we were over the initial shock and the medical team had explained everything, having that sporting background helped,” says Paula. “We had a treatment plan – like all the training plans I have followed over the years, and it was something we could stick to and see things improving.”

The prognosis was good with a high chance of it being successfully cured with surgery, and in Isla’s case, chemotherapy too, which started in September, just as she was starting a new school term. The drugs were delivered intravenously five days in a row, taking seven hours each time.

(07/20/2021) Views: 54 ⚡AMP
by Adrian Monti
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Exercising Outdoors Doesn’t Boost Your Melanoma Risk—as Long as You Take Precautions

New research suggests you don’t need to hit the treadmill on super sunny days. But you do need sunscreen

Exercising outside doesn’t raise your risk of melanoma, as long as you follow sun-smart strategies, new research suggests.

Using sunscreen (a minimum of SPF 15 or 30 is recommended), covering your skin, and taking advantage of shady spots when you can all lower your chances of getting a sunburn—if you get too many sunburns over time, they can lead to melanoma

The long route you’re about to run is all sunshine and no shade. Does that mean you’re putting yourself at higher risk for skin cancer? A recent study in the journal Preventive Medicine suggests you can lace up and get outside without worry—as long as you follow sun-smart strategies.

Norwegian researchers looked at over 150,000 women ages 30 to 75 who participated in a large-scale study on cancer done over nearly 20 years. They examined whether participants who exercised outdoors reported more incidents of melanoma, which is considered the deadliest type of skin cancer. Previous studies have suggested this is the case, in part because those who spend more time outside are at higher risk of sunburn, which is a contributor to skin cancer.

However the researchers found no increased melanoma risk among participants. Particularly surprising, those results held for the arms as well, which tend to be the most exposed during activity, said co-author Flavie Perrier, Ph.D., research fellow in the Institute of Basic Medical Sciences at the University of Oslo.

She told Runner’s World that focusing on Norway is notable here, since the country has the third highest incidence of melanoma in Europe, but the highest mortality rate from the disease. Also, people in Norway tend to have light skin and many enjoy sunbathing in the summer, which both increase melanoma risk.

That means finding ways to lower incidence is especially important for the country, but the results can apply anywhere. She did add that they were unsure if the results would apply to men, since only women were included in the study, but that it was likely the sunburn connection would be relevant for them as well.

“We found that a large proportion of women didn’t get sunburns compared to those who were less active, and this might be due to taking more precautions,” she said.

Previous research suggests that it doesn’t take many sunburns to become problematic. One study, published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, found women who had at least five “blistering” sunburns before age 20 had an 80 percent increased risk for melanoma.

Sunburn is an inflammatory reaction to the ultraviolet radiation experienced during prolonged sun exposure, according to The Skin Cancer Foundation. For people with less melanin—a pigment that gives skin its color—skin cells become red and swollen, and that damage alters a tumor-suppressing gene so that cells are less able to repair themselves. That can cause cancer to both form and spread.

To protect yourself, experts recommend using a sunscreen with at least a factor of SPF 15—which has been shown to reduce melanoma risk significantly—but the researchers in the recent Norwegian study suggest SPF 30 as a starting point. Also, The Skin Cancer Foundation’s sun protection guide provides useful guidance, such as covering your skin, taking advantage of shady spots when you can, and choosing the right sunscreen.

You won’t find any reef-harming chemicals in this sunscreen. What you will get is a thick, protective barrier of zinc oxide.

(07/18/2021) Views: 69 ⚡AMP
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Amy Stone runs London marathon alone after cancellation

A woman from Clapham has won plaudits after running the London marathon on her own after it was cancelled due to Covid-19 concerns.

Amy Stone, 31, had planned to run the 2020 London Marathon last year and fundraise for Macmillan Cancer Support in the process.

Yet the sudden onset of the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic in the UK forced organisers to cancel the event and threw her plans into jeopardy.

Amy was not to be deterred, however, and decided to run the marathon several months later anyway, despite the cancellation.

 

The Clapham woman described her motivation after discovering how she and generations of her female family members were at high risk of contracting breast and ovarian cancer.

"After my Auntie Katie was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2017, she decided to take a genetic test to see if she carried the BRCA1 gene.

"Over the next 2 years we all started to get tested. 5 out of 6 of us are carrying the mutated BRCA1 gene, including myself," Amy said.

Consequently, she and others are at an increased lifetime risk of breast cancer by as much as 90 per cent, and a heightened risk of ovarian cancer by up to 60 per cent.

Amy pointed out that in one photo featuring six "wonderful" female family members represented "two bouts of triple negative breast cancer, four double mastectomies, three ovarian removals and a mum who lost her fight with ovarian cancer at 58."

As such she has been forced to make difficult life choices in anticipation of a potentially difficult future, and roundly praised Macmillan for their support in this regard, underlining how the 2020 Marathon's cancellation wouldn't stop her from supporting the charity.

"I wasn’t prepared to give up – I had worked so hard and this race was never purely about running for me. It was about an amazing charity that has done so much for my family. And for the brave women who have climbed mountains and my nan who lost her life too young.

"So, on 4th October 2020 I ran around London completing my own Marathon and finishing my 26.2 miles at my home in Clapham Junction.

(07/08/2021) Views: 68 ⚡AMP
by Orlando Jerkinson
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin 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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Meet the Texas man running 50 marathons in 50 weeks in 50 states

In November 2015, Houston’s Aaron Burros was shot five times. He was at work when he heard a commotion and went to help whoever was in distress. Burros did help, distracting the enraged individual while everyone in danger got away, but he was not so lucky. Lying on the ground after tackling one of the assailants, Burros stared up at another man, who was ready to shoot him. He now says everything slowed down in those moments, giving him a chance to wonder if he was going to die.

Fortunately, the gunman misfired his first shot, which only grazed Burros’s torso, giving him just enough time to get up and run away. As he fled, he was hit in both glutes, but he managed to get to safety without being shot fatally. Almost six years later, Burros is still plagued by the terrifying memories of that day, and a bullet fragment left in his right glute is a physical reminder of the attack, still sending shots of pain up and down his leg with each step. Despite all of this pain, both physical and mental, he continues to run, which he says gives him purpose, even in his darkest moments. 

Today, Burros is in the middle of a year-long running challenge in which he is looking to run 50 marathons in 50 weeks in the 50 U.S. states, all as a celebration for his 50th birthday. He’s using the challenge as a way to fundraise for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Tennessee, with the hope of raising a grand total of $50,000.

So far, Burros has completed 24 races this year, leaving him a little behind his goal of close to one per week. He has missed a few races, for various reasons, but he has made it to the start line of most of them, and he’s continuing to work toward his ultimate goal of raising $50,000. 

Burros’s running journey 

In 2010, years before he was attacked, Burros weighed close to 400 pounds. Looking to lose weight, he began running, slowly at first and only for 15 minutes or so each day. As any runner knows, though, with persistence comes fitness, and after a year, Burros had lost 100 pounds and gotten much better at running. By 2015, he was a seasoned marathoner, and he signed up for a 50-miler. 

“That was set for two weeks after I got shot,” Burros says now. After undergoing surgery to have the bullets removed from his glutes, Burros asked his doctor if he could still run the race. His doctor told him that it would be a brutal run, but he wouldn’t cause any further damage, so Burros decided to go for it. 

“I played sports my whole life,” Burros says. “My threshold for pain was high, so I just went out and tried to do the ultra.” He made it to about the 40-mile mark, but then he started falling down over and over again. He wasn’t tripping on anything, but he simply couldn’t stay on his feet. “There was this medic there who kept asking if I was OK. He told me to walk.” 

Burros took the advice and slowed down, but not even a mile later, he was hit with an anxiety attack. “That was when my PTSD kicked in,” he says. “The anxiety, the depression, the crying spells. I couldn’t even walk in a straight line.” Burros didn’t make it to the finish that day, and he required assistance to get off the course. Going into the race, he had figured that the only obstacles he would face would be physical, and while he encountered his fair share of those challenges, it was the mental injury he suffered that forced him to pull out of that race. 

“I had no clue what I was going through at that point,” he says. “I was facing all kinds of emotional battles.” For the next four years, Burros saw a number of specialists to help him work through the trauma, but he says his mental state only continued to worsen. It got to the point where he stopped doing pretty much everything, including running.

“I would wake up, sit at Starbucks all day, then go home and go to sleep,” he says. “I did that for four years. Unless I was going to my appointments, that was it, I didn’t go anywhere else. I didn’t know how to function.” In that time, he regained much of the weight he had lost before he was shot, until the scale eventually said 299. 

“I told my psychiatrist I had to do something, that I wasn’t going back to the 300 club,” Burros says. “For me, gaining weight back was just as damaging as being shot.” He got back into running, setting a big goal for himself: to run each of the six World Marathon Majors (WMMs). In 2019, Burros checked four of those races off his list, running in London, Berlin, Chicago and New York City.

He had plans to run the Tokyo and Boston marathons in 2020 and complete his goal in just one year, but both mass participation events were cancelled due to COVID-19. This year, he will run the Boston Marathon, and he hopes to check Tokyo off his list in 2023. (Organizers of the Tokyo Marathon have closed the race to international runners this year and next, meaning anyone like Burros has to wait until at least 2023 to cross the event off his bucket list.) 

Coming into 2021, Burros decided to celebrate his 50th birthday with a goal even more audacious than his plan to run all six WMMs. “I was turning 50 and I wanted to do something meaningful, to have some hope,” he says. “I know what running means to me, so I chose to do something with my running.” 

50 in 50 in 50 

Burros billed his event as running 50 marathons, and while most races he’ll run this year are 42.2K, he has mixed in a few 5Ks, 10Ks, half-marathons and even some ultras. Running 50 races in 50 weeks in all 50 states is a big goal, and it has taken its toll on Burros. “It’s been challenging, frustrating and overwhelming at times,” he says. But he has held onto hope throughout the journey, and managed to push through tough times. Two of his driving forces come in the form of children: Aiden and Gabby.

Aiden is a boy Burros met at the Chicago Marathon in 2019. He suffers from multiple illnesses, and Burros began to pray for him, but he didn’t think that was enough, and he decided to take action. After researching different causes, Burros decided to raise funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

“I know medical costs can break a family, so I wanted to do something to help them and honour Aiden and Gabby,” he says. Burros only met Aiden briefly, but he has a close connection to Gabby, who is his grand-niece. Just before starting his 50 in 50 in 50 challenge, Burros heard from his brother, Gabby’s grandfather, that Gabby had been diagnosed with kidney cancer. Her kidney was successfully removed, but doctors found tumours in her skull. 

Burros has had a tough time with his running challenge so far, and understandably so, but he uses Aiden and Gabby as inspiration to keep going. He knows he may miss a few weeks along the way, but the number of races he runs isn’t his priority, and instead, his main goal is to help as many children in similar positions to Aiden’s and Gabby’s as possible. To learn more about Burros’s journey and to follow along, click here, and to donate to the cause, click here.

(07/03/2021) Views: 69 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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The relashionship between sugary drinks and bowel cancer

Maybe you’re not a fan of plain water—we get it!—so you’ve created a mix of beverages to drink both on runs and in everyday life. That could be soda, energy drinks, and fruit juices, in addition to sports drinks. While that might solve your taste issue, a recent study in the journal Gut suggests you may want to rethink your drink.

Researchers looked at data provided by just over 95,000 participants in the Nurses’ Health Study II, an ongoing study of women that began in 1989 and tracks daily habits and health outcomes.

They found that over a 24-year period, those with a higher intake of sugar-sweetened drinks were at higher risk of developing bowel cancer before age 50. Women who drank two or more per day were about twice as likely to be diagnosed with this type of cancer, and each daily serving was associated with a 16 per cent higher risk.

The reason for this is likely due to the way sugar-sweetened drinks can cause a rapid rise in blood glucose and insulin secretion, causing inflammation and obesity, which are both associated with a higher risk of bowel cancer development.

Although artificial sweeteners have their downsides in other research—like this review, which found negative side effects in some animal and human studies—the researchers in the current study discovered that substituting sugar-sweetened drinks with artificially sweetened ones were beneficial. In those cases, there was a 17 to 36 per cent lower risk of a bowel cancer diagnosis before age 50.

What does this mean in terms of daily consumption? First, that when you aren’t exercising, water tends to be a better option, according to dietitian Kelsey Pezzuti, R.D., who specialises in sports nutrition. She told Bicycling that laying off the sports drinks as a regular beverage can help you control the amount of sugar you’re consuming overall.

When you are on a run or doing other exercise, a sports drink can be beneficial if your activity is at moderate-to-high intensity and lasts for more than an hour. That’s because their combination of fluid, electrolytes, and carbs has been shown to help many people power through intense workouts with sustained energy compared to plain water.

If that run is just an easy 30 minutes, though? Not so much.

'These drinks are ideal for athletes training several hours per day, such as marathon runners or triathletes,' said Pezzuti. 'If your workout lasts less than an hour, chances are slim that you actually need a sports drink.'

(05/28/2021) Views: 73 ⚡AMP
by Elizabeth Millard
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Marathon runner completes epic 110-day challenge running the same marathon course since February 1

A runner has finished an epic challenge of completing 110 marathons in 110 consecutive days.

Gary McKee ran the same 26.2 mile (42km) circuit around his home in Cleator Moor, Cumbria, UK every day since 1 February, in memory of his father.

The 51-year-old has raised more than £110,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support and Hospice at Home West Cumbria, smashing his initial target of £10,000.

Cheering crowds welcomed him home as he crossed the finish line.

He said he was pleased the town had turned out to greet him.

"I enjoyed the moment. I did look up at the sky and think of the people who you have been running for and the people you run in memory of, and there have been lots of them. I thought about my dad," he said.

"It's a wonderful feeling because everyone had a smile on their face. It has captured the imagination of the town of Cleator Moor and further afield."

Initially after completing the challenge he was holding a cup of tea to keep warm, but he said he was "looking forward to a beer".

Mr McKee is no stranger to challenges - he has previously climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, trekked through New Zealand and ran from Land's End to John O'Groats.

He was inspired to fundraise for Macmillan after his father was diagnosed with cancer in 1997. He died from an unrelated illness in 2003.

His 16-year-old son Alfie and nephew Stuart McKee have also been taking part by cycling 110 marathons in 110 days, and a younger son, Beau, and daughter Minnie have done their own running challenges.

He has also been accompanied by friends Kevin Hetherington, who took part in 55 marathons, and Michael Watson, who joined him for 44.

Mr McKee, who would often complete a marathon before starting his shift at Sellafield, said he would not necessarily be sorry to end the challenge.

Speaking before his final run he described it as an "emotional day".

"I know that it's coming to an end and people tend to think you can't wait to get finished and have a rest," he said.

"But the way I see it is that when you finish donations stop coming in and that's a little bit of a sad part of it."

Sue McDonald, Macmillan fundraising manager for Cumbria, said: "To smash out 110 consecutive marathons is an incredible feat.

"The support from Gary's children and the community has been phenomenal - and to get messages of support from Mo Farah, Sally Gunnell and yesterday from Kevin Sinfield has given everyone such a boost over the many long days.

"There's quite a few tears of joy and pride today - and with good reason."

(05/23/2021) Views: 96 ⚡AMP
by BBC
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The first lady of Polish sport, Irena Szewinska

Only one athlete in history has set world records at 100m, 200m and 400m: Irena Szewinska – the brightest star of Polish athletics.

The first lady of Polish sport, as she was called by Poland’s president Andrzej Duda, is a five-time Olympian and seven-time Olympic medallist, with her achievements including three gold, two silver and two bronze medals. 

Her Olympic journey

Szewinska was born in Leningrad in 1947 to a Ukrainian mother and Polish father. She moved with her parents to Warsaw when she was still a child.

At the age of 14 she started athletics at her school in Warsaw, where she was coached by Jan Kopyto, a former javelin thrower who competed at the Melbourne 1956 Olympic Games.

"I ran so fast in the school trials that the teacher requested a re-run because she thought she'd made a mistake in measuring the time,” Szewinska said in an interview with the Polish Press Agency.

The Polish sprinter made her Olympic debut at the Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games at only 18 years of age. Competing under her maiden name of Kirszenstein, she won silver medals in the long jump (6.60m) and the 200m (23.1).

She went on to win her first Olympic gold medal in the 4x100m – Poland’s second Olympic medal in that event after their bronze in Rome in 1960 and their first ever relay gold medal at the Games. 

In 1965, she snatched the 100m world record (11.1) from USA’s Wyomia Tyus, who remained one of her strongest competitors over this distance for the next three years. That same season, Szewinska broke the 200m world record for the first time, running 22.7 in the Polish capital.

After earning a degree in economics from the University of Warsaw, Szewinska’s second Olympic appearance was in Mexico City in 1968.

“Things started badly for me in Mexico City,” she said. “I didn’t qualify for the long jump final, and my second event was the 100m which wasn’t my favorite event. Because of my height, I always start poorly, and by the time I was in full stride the race was over.”

She finished third in the 100m (11.18) behind the US one-two of Tyus and Barbara Ferrell. Szewinska then qualified for the 200m final after finishing third in her semifinal and lined up against a strong field.

In 1974, only two years after her first attempt at the 400m, Szewinska became the first woman to break 50 seconds with a hand-timed performance of 49.9 in Warsaw. The 400m women’s world records were recognised from 1957 but from 1975 onwards they had to be electronically timed.

The first electronically timed world record was set by Finland’s Riitta Salin, who ran 50.14. The first woman to run a sub-50-second electronic time was Christina Brehmer from East Germany who ran 49.77 in May 1976. This record only stood a month before Szewinska ran 49.75 on home soil.

Her Olympic and world record performance in the 400m remains the Polish record. She added a third Olympic gold medal to her collection, equalling Australian Shirley Strickland's record at that time of the most Olympic athletics medals won by a woman.

The spikes that she wore at the 1976 Games are now on display in the Museum of World Athletics™ – the world’s first 3D virtual sports museum.

In 1977, at 31 years of age, Szewinska was up for another challenge: lining up against Marita Koch at the inaugural IAAF World Cup in Dusseldorf.

Koch dominated the race but Szewinska, a renowned strong finisher, fought to the end to overtake Koch in the last 30 metres, winning in 49.52, her second best ever time.

Szewinska’s long athletics career ended after her fifth Olympic participation in Moscow in 1980. She pulled a muscle during the semifinals of the 400m which forced her to put an end to her Olympic journey. She retired from the sport soon after and gave birth to her second son in 1981.

Career transition

After a 16-year career in athletics, Poland’s most decorated Olympian transitioned to become a respected administrator in sports, giving back to the sport that she loved since her school days.

In 2012, she was inducted into the IAAF Hall of Fame. Four years later, she received the Order of the White Eagle, Poland’s highest award.

"Sport was a great adventure of my life, when I was an athlete and my fate was that I am still connected with sport. I am passionate about it, this is my hobby," she said.

On Friday 29 June 2018, Szewinska lost her long battle with cancer aged 72.

(05/08/2021) Views: 85 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Can Yerba Mate Give You the Same Pre-Run Energy Boost as Coffee?

We investigate whether it’s time to turn over a new leaf when it comes to your hot beverage of choice.

Many of us call upon the powers of caffeine to perk us up and put a little more spring in our stride before workouts. Most often, we turn to coffee, but lately, some have been brewing up another drink that promises to energize the body without any jittery side effects: yerba mate.

There are only a handful of plants in the world that naturally produce caffeine, and yerba mate is one of them. This makes the herbal tea a potential stand-in for java, and it may have you wondering if it’s time to turn over a new leaf when it comes to your hot beverage of choice. Here’s everything you need to know about yerba mate’s benefits and if it can help in your PR pursuits.

What Exactly Is Yerba Mate?

Yerba mate is an herbal tea made from the dried leaves and twigs of the evergreen Ilex paraguariensis plant, which is native to South America. This is not the same plant that green tea hails from. Traditionally it is consumed from a container called a gourd (calabash) and sipped with a metal straw (bombilla) that has a filter at its lower end to strain out the leaf fragments.

Yerba mate is often described as earthy, vegetal, herbaceous, and bittersweet in flavor. Several brands of mate also contain tender stems and branches in the mix, which can impart a woodsy flavor to tea. 

What Are Yerba Mate’s Benefits?

Yerba mate may help give your runs a jolt. While the caffeine content of yerba mate will be impacted by a few factors, including brewing time and quantity of leaves used, it’s thought that a cup of the beverage contains about 40 milligrams of caffeine. In comparison, brewed coffee ranges from 60 to 180 milligrams in a 6-ounce serving. Yerba mate also contains two other stimulants—theophylline and theobromine—which may work together with caffeine to put more pep in your stride or help you shake off morning brain fog.

Caffeine has been shown to help improve athletic performance for a few reasons, including lowering perceived effort. But you may need more caffeine than yerba mate delivers for all the performance-boosting benefits. To effectively rev up your workouts and races, you’ll need between 3 to 6 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram of body weight. So for a 150-pound runner, that’s 204 to 408 milligrams of caffeine or roughly 5 to 10 cups of yerba mate. People who are not used to consuming caffeine (and are thus more sensitive to it) may get more of a boost from less.

For some people, the naturally caffeinated beverage delivers enough without the pre-run jitters or irritability. But this benefit remains largely anecdotal. And since the drink contains fewer acids than coffee, some people find this beverage is easier on their stomachs than coffee, which can be especially beneficial before a big workout.

What’s more, an investigation in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise reported that trained male cyclists who took 5 grams of capsulated yerba mate for five days and then the same amount again one hour before the exercise trials burned more fat during exercise and had improved time trial performance than when a placebo was consumed. So when paired with endurance activities like running and cycling, yerba mate could help aid in efforts to burn body fat and also improve athletic performance by conserving carbohydrate stores for high-intensity moments, but this was a very narrow study conducted only on trained males.

The optimal amount of yerba mate from a supplement or drink to consume daily and prior to exercise is still to be determined. Many studies have used standardized capsules, so we need more research to see if the same benefits would occur using brewed tea.

When yerba mate leaves are brewed, they release several types of antioxidants, which may limit oxidative stress (a harmful chemical process) and inflammation in the body, leading to a lower risk for several health conditions such as heart disease, dementia, and cancer. And while no research has shown any definitive links between yerba mate and the reduction of disease risk, a study in the British Journal of Nutrition speculates that the abundance of phytochemicals (plant compounds) in yerba mate is the main reason why 11 days of its consumption was found to improve the rate of strength recovery from eccentric exercise (weight lifting) by an average of 8.6 percent. It should be stressed that brewed coffee also contains a slew of antioxidants, and it’s not yet known which drink wins out for packing the biggest antioxidant punch.

Additionally, in one 40-day investigation, participants who drank a little over a cup (330 milliliters) of yerba mate each day lowered their LDL (bad) cholesterol levels by about 8 percent and raised HDL (good) cholesterol by 4.4 percent, which may lower the risk for heart disease.

Yerba mate does contain a few essential minerals including manganese, iron, zinc, and copper, but levels are likely not large enough to make a big impact on your diet compared to what you get from foods.

It’s worth noting that there is some evidence that drinking large amounts of yerba mate for an extended period of time may increase the risk for upper-body cancers, namely in the esophagus, larynx, and mouth. One possible explanation is that the drying process of yerba mate produces polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), known carcinogens also found in tobacco smoke and grilled meat. A more likely scenario, however, is that the very hot temperatures that yerba mate is commonly consumed at in countries with frequent use induces tissue damage that leads to cancerous cell formation. As long as you are not brewing up liters a day and also letting your drink cool for a few minutes so that it is below 150°F before sipping, the cancer risk should be minimal. Levels of PAHs can vary considerably among brands.

The latest recommendations are that women who are pregnant should limit their intake of caffeine from any source, including yerba mate, as it may raise the risk for complications including low birth weight and miscarriage.

How Do You Use Yerba Mate?

To prepare yerba mate, fill the bottom third of the gourd with dried mate leaves before adding hot water, or use a tea strainer filled with a tablespoon or so of leaves set in a mug. You can also brew it up using a French press. Yerba mate tea bags are also available, but you’ll likely get the freshest flavor (and more of a caffeine boost) with loose leaf.

For the warmer days ahead, you can prepare mate like you would iced tea and keep a jug stashed in the fridge. A few brands are offering pre-made bottled or canned mate drinks, but read labels so you aren’t also drinking heaps of sugar.

Some sports nutrition products, like chews and gels, will include yerba mate extract as a way to deliver you a shot of caffeine when on the go. These products should tell you how much mate-derived caffeine you’re getting in a serving.

Remember, because it contains stimulants, sipping yerba mate within a few hours of bedtime may lead to a restless night.

(04/25/2021) Views: 101 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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How Running Can Boost Your Immune System

Running has some amazing benefits in terms of resistance to infection. People who run, or exercise aerobically, at a moderate level experience fewer days of sickness from the common cold and other upper respiratory tract infections (URTI). What’s more, less competitive runners following lower-key exercise regimens have enhanced immune reactions to infection.

Many studies indicate that exercising at a medium intensity level reduces our risk of infection over the long term. How does this happen?

– Light or moderate running boosts our body’s natural immune system by circulating protective cells through the body faster, to attack and eliminate bacteria, viruses and fungi.

– Another theory holds that the increase in body temperature when we run may inhibit the growth of bacteria, thus reducing its foothold in the body.

– Some exercise scientists believe that regular running helps rid the lungs of airborne bacteria and viruses that cause URTI, while others say exercise causes the loss of carcinogens through increased sweat and urine loss.

– Active people also experience lower rates of colon cancer and breast cancer. Researchers think moderate exercise boosts the body’s immune system, attacking malignancies that have viral origin.

Don’t overdo it

Overtraining can suppress normal immune function, so it’s important to get the right balance of frequency, intensity and duration of running or general fitness workouts. Overtrained runners at all levels have been shown to experience impaired immune systems, to the extent that they suffer from a higher number of upper respiratory tract infections (URTI) than untrained people.

URTI is also elevated following competitive endurance races such as marathons. And it appears that the longer the endurance event, the harder the athlete’s immune system is hit. According to research, there’s an “open window” of altered immunity, lasting from three to 72 hours after you run hard and for longer than 90 minutes. In this time, infectious microbes, viruses and bacteria may overcome your body’s natural defences, depending on your natural state of immunity at the time.

Tips for a strong immune system:

– Use carbohydrate drinks before, during and after running events or during very heavy exercise sessions. The recommended dosage is 30 to 60 grams of carbohydrate during exercise. This will lower the impact of the stress hormones on your immune system.

– Eat a well-balanced diet to keep vitamin and mineral levels in the body at optimal levels. Important vitamins and minerals that have the greatest impact on immune function are: vitamins A, E, B6, B12, folate, essential fatty acids, the amino acids glutamine, arginine, and L-carnitine. No research has conclusively shown that ingesting these in supplement form reduces URTI, but taking them in safe amounts will not do any harm, either.

– Avoid large crowds of people for 1-2 weeks after you finish a marathon or ultramarathon. You’re more susceptible to URTI during this time.

– Wash your hands with warm soapy water and minimize hand-to-eye and hand-to-nose contact, especially during cold and flu season.

– Do not exercise in a group setting if you have URTI, to avoid spreading it to others.

– Get adequate sleep on a regular schedule. Sleep disruption has been linked to lowered immunity.

– Keep your life stressors to a minimum, as high stress levels have been linked to URTI.

(04/22/2021) Views: 109 ⚡AMP
by Canadian Running
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Endurance athlete from Bristol is hoping to run 200 marathons in 100 days

In 2019, Nick Butter became the first person to complete a marathon in every country of the world.

The gruelling challenge took him from North Korea to El Salvador, across war zones and freezing temperatures. At one point he was bitten by a dog and mugged.

Nick's latest feat is unlikely to take him to such extremes, as he'll be running along the coast of Britain - but he will be attempting to complete two marathons a day.

Starting at the Eden Project on Saturday April 17, Nick will run for 14 hours each day to cover 52.4 miles (a double marathon), every day for 100 days.

He will run 5,240 miles in total, ending up where he began at the Eden Arena on Monday July 26.

I honestly don't know if I can do it but we're going to give it a go. He says.

Nick will be supported by a team of five people across three camper vans.

The first will hold his support team, keeping him safe and fed, the second will be his media crew and the third will be his home on the road. It will be driven by Nick's girlfriend Nikki and their dog Poppy will also join them.

When Nick ran across the world, he did it in aid of Prostate Cancer UK after a fellow ultra runner, Kevin Webber, was diagnosed with the disease.

He has so far raised more than £140,000.

For his 2021 challenge, he has set up The 196 Foundation. Its title comes from the 196 countries across the world and reflects all the needs across the planet.

Each year it will support one cause, voted on by the foundation's donors. It could be anything from buying a wheelchair for a family to building a school.

The 30-year-old hopes to be joined by other runners along the route. "We'd love to have some company and people to come and keep me company for the 100 days," Nick said.

"When I'm running for 11 hours a day, getting through 9,000 calories, I need all the help I can get".

(04/16/2021) Views: 137 ⚡AMP
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How Doing Nothing May Make You A Better Runner

The last few decades have witnessed a proliferation of research uncovering the profound effects of meditation on emotional wellbeing and mental health. The ancient Eastern practice has boasted a wide swath of miraculous benefits including the ability to reduce stress, enhance empathy, improve cognition, and even slow aging. But does it offer any aid to runners looking for a mental edge?

The answer is a resounding yes. While runners grind through speed work, tempo runs, and weight sessions vigorously training their bodies to perform to maxim capacity in races, the mind doesn't receive nearly as much attention - yet victory or defeat happen in the mind first. Our brain is an organ that can be either our greatest ally or most ruthless enemy in those vulnerable moments during a race when we are faced with the choice to push victoriously through pain or succumb to suffering by slowing down. It all depends on how we train it - and research has found certain meditation techniques to be unrivaled in powerfully honing the mind.

Beyond running, if you haven't tried meditation yet, this chaotic and precarious year is a good time to start a practice.

What Exactly is Meditation?

The mind tends to produce a lot of chatter, creating stories about the future, replaying the past, worrying, judging, fantasizing, etc. Meditation seeks to calm the erratic thought currents of what is sometimes referred to as the "monkey mind" by attuning us to the present moment.

An internet search will take you down a rabbit hole of various meditation practices, but one of the most well studied, and that which most of the research in this article refer to, is mindfulness meditation. In this practice, you focus intently on one specific thing or sensation, whether it be your breath, an object, or a body part, for a set amount of time. The mind will naturally wander, the idea is to notice when it does and bring your attention back to your point of focus.

And somehow, this "do-nothing" practice boasts some pretty profound benefits for endurance athletes.

Benefits of Meditation

Enhanced Focus and Mental Resilience

Running is a form of stress. The greater the intensity of the run relative to a person's level of fitness, the more stress is  generated. While a good deal of that strain is physical, some of it is mental. Prolonged strenuous training, such as a tempo run or distance race, requires enhanced attention and focus on continuing to push oneself into increasing levels of discomfort. Research has shown that practicing mindfulness meditation a few minutes each day can increase the willpower, focus, and emotional resilience necessary for sustained endurance performance by building up gray matter in areas of the brain that regulate emotions and dictate decision making.

For example, in a 2017 study on college football players, mindful meditation was found to strengthen sustained attention and wellbeing among participants in periods of high stress. The participants were divided into two groups and enrolled into either a 4-week "relaxation training" program or a "mindfulness meditation" program, each lasting 2 hours per session. The relaxation group listened to soothing music and learned to systematically and progressively relax their muscles (a common tactic within sports psychology), while the other group was taught mindfulness meditation, which involves paying close attention to breathing and the present moment. Both groups were given 12-minute daily practices to do five days per week. The study was conducted over a stressful 4-week period during the players pre-season summer athletic training when they do especially intensive drills, as well as take summer school courses. As a group, the players degraded in their attentional capacity and their emotional wellbeing, but the amount of degradation differed between the mindfulness meditation group and the relaxation group.

"The mindfulness group didn't decline, they stayed stable over time, whereas the relaxation group actually got worse" says Dr. Amishi Jha, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Miami in Florida, who was a part of the research team. "Within the mindfulness group, those that practiced more, they did their daily homework mindfulness exercises more regularly, they actually benefited more. Their wellbeing was better and their attention was better."

The study was done on football players, but it holds some pretty profound implications for athletes of other disciplines such as running. In fact, 2004 Olympic 2004 Olympic bronze medalist and American marathon record holder Deena Kastor has used meditation practices to enhance her running performance with one of the primary benefits being enhanced focus.

"The benefits I've seen from a performance side, is being able to focus solely on the rhythm of my breath under stressful races," says Kastor, who has been practicing versions of mindfulness meditation and visualization-based meditation for two decades. "Whether I'm anxious to make a move, being shoved or tripped, feeling doubt or fatigue, I can easily focus on my breath until a better thought comes in to help me through the moment."

Dr. Jha emphasizes that when elite athletes underperform, it isn't typically because their body gave out, but rather that their mind gave up.

"What we find in most elite athletes is that their downfall is not because the body conks out, it's that the mind is fighting with them," explains Jha. "So these capacities to focus and really regulate your mood and reactivity become really key in preserving their performance."

Better Cope With Discomfort and Pain

During more intensive training periods, meditation practices can be helpful for reducing muscle soreness and pain. It may also help you push through make-or-break moments in a race or training session when you can either transcend pain or let it slow you down.

Recent findings have demonstrated that mindfulness meditation significantly reduces an individual's sensitivity to pain. A 2015 study published in the Journal of Neuroscience looked at how study participants responded to painful heat stimuli before and after attending four 20-minute meditation training sessions over a four-day period. After the meditation training, participants rated pain, on average, as 57% less unpleasant and 40% less intense.

"This study is the first to demonstrate that mindfulness meditation is mechanistically distinct and produces reductions in pain intensity and pain unpleasantness ratings above and beyond the analgesic effects seen with either placebo conditioning or sham mindfulness meditation," wrote the researchers in their paper.

Race More Intuitively

By increasing your awareness and observation, mindfulness meditation may also give you a mental edge during a race by allowing you to better read your competition and react accordingly.

"The senses meditation I practice has allowed me to take in the rich racing experience and has even allowed me to sense a competitors moves before she makes it," says Kastor, referring to a type of mindfulness meditation technique she uses that focuses on a sensation. "And the visualization has created a powerful belief that what I want to accomplish is possible. In visualizing I try to see a variety of race scenarios and succeeding in all of them. When I can see it, I can believe it, and then become it."

This relates to an area of research that Dr. Jha is interested in further exploring called "embedded practices," which involves being able to integrate mindfulness practices into a physical activity. While mindfully running does not replace the mindfulness meditation practice where you sit in silence focusing on your breath, it can supplement it.

"If you can start incorporating mindfulness practices into your running, then you're kind of getting more bang for your buck," says Dr. Jha. "You're both training your body and you're training your mind. And frankly, because you'll want to use your mindfulness practice during the competition itself, it's really good to start practicing that while you're actually running."

Treat Anxiety and Lower Cortisol

Excessive stress and elevated cortisol levels associated with anxiety can be detrimental to recovery and performance resulting in unpleasant consequences like fatigue, insomnia, hormonal disruptions, mental fog, vulnerability to infection, and increased risk of injury. If you are someone who struggles with anxious thoughts or racing anxiety, meditation can help you regulate your emotions to calm yourself down in moments that trigger stress.

Kastor says that the most unexpected benefit she experienced through her meditation practice was being able to have complete control to calm herself in moments of stress such as traffic, a cancer diagnosis, grief, and fatigue. By strengthening a person's cognitive ability to regulate his or her emotional response, mindfulness meditation has long been recognized as an effective antidote for anxiety. Studies using brain imaging have found that meditation provides relief to anxiety by activating the anterior cingulate cortex, ventromedial prefrontal cortex, and anterior insula - areas of the brain that are involved with executive function and governing worrying. Other studies have shown that mindfulness meditation reduces stress by lowering cortisol levels in the blood.

By activating this relaxation response, meditation has been shown to reduce inflammation and facilitate higher quality sleep making it a promising powerful tool for speeding up recovery in athletes.

How to Start Meditating 

If you're interested in beginning your own practice, Dr. Jha lays out a practical template for beginning your own mindfulness meditation.

"A very common foundation of mindfulness meditation practice involves sitting comfortably, paying attention in a quiet place for a dedicated period of time, and then the instruction is to pay attention to, for example, breath-related sensations," explains Dr. Jha. "It can be any kind of anchoring object you want. And your job is to keep your attention focused on that. And then when your mind wanders away, as it will, you just bring it back."

One of the techniques Kastor practices is breath-awareness meditation in which she says she finds 5-10 minutes to be calming. "If I have time, I love to get to a place where my breathing focus dissolves and I can be clear of any and all thoughts," she says, estimating the meditation to last 10-30 minutes. Other times, she closes her eyes and focuses on the sounds, smells, tastes, and feel of her surroundings, typically in nature. For her visualization meditation, Kastor imagines a successful event, such as a race or a presentation. "By visualizing, allowing your mind's eye to see something happening, your body gets to work neurologically to see it to fruition," she explains.

Kastor suggests that anyone who wants to get into the habit of meditating practice at the same time and place every day. Typically, whenever fits best into your schedule whether it's right away in the morning or in the afternoon before picking up the kids from school. (Though, you should try to avoid practicing at times that you're so tired you risk falling asleep mid-meditation.) "The key is to keep at it long enough so you can feel the broad power of its benefits," Kastor notes.

So how long is long enough? Dr. Jha recommends practicing for 10 to 15 minutes a day, the point at which some immediate results of meditation begin to kick in, for five days a week. Her lab has found that some of the benefits of mindful meditation, such as sustained attention, begin to show around four weeks of practicing. A 2016 meta-analysis on mindfulness meditation found that the practice begins to alter brain structure and activity after two months.

As meditation has become more mainstream, various digital programs and apps have been marketed over recent years to make meditation practices more accessible to the public. Kastor uses the Headspace app and recommends it for beginners because it includes guided meditation practices and can feel less intimidating.

"We think of the body as something that needs training to achieve excellence and wellness, and the mind, the brain, are no different," emphasizes Dr. Jha. "The challenge has been that we don't have great science as to what to offer as a training program, and mindfulness meditation happens to be a very good candidate based on the research."

(04/10/2021) Views: 95 ⚡AMP
by Trail Runner Magazine
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2021 B.A.A. 10K and Half Marathon will be held virtually

The 2021 B.A.A. 10K and the 2021 B.A.A. Half Marathon will be held virtually this year, the Boston Athletic Association announced Monday.

The B.A.A. 10K, which is presented by Brigham and Women’s Hospital, will have virtual race dates from June 25-27. The B.A.A. Half Marathon, presented by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Jimmy Fund, will take place from September 17-19.

“Runners around the world can earn the signature unicorn medals and be active through the B.A.A. 10K and B.A.A. Half Marathon,” B.A.A. President and CEO Tom Grilk said in Monday’s release. “We look forward to continuing to engage new and experienced runners globally in the sport of running and helping people pursue active lifestyles.”

Runners can register for this year’s virtual 2021 B.A.A. 10K starting at 10 a.m on Tuesday, April 6, through the B.A.A.’s online platform Athletes’ Village. Runners can create a free Athletes’ Village account prior to the registration opening. All entrants will receive a virtual B.A.A. 10K toolkit, which will have signature race elements such as a printable champion’s breaktape, mile markers and and cheer cards.

Registration dates and information for the virtual B.A.A. Half Marathon will be announced at a later date.

Both events are anticipated to return to an in-person format in 2022.

(04/05/2021) Views: 139 ⚡AMP
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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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Former top tennis pro runs David Goggins's 4 x 4 x 48 ultra challenge

James Blake, an American retired professional tennis player who climbed as high as fourth in the world rankings in his career, recently completed ultrarunner David Goggins‘s 4 x 4 x 48 Challenge. Blake has been running for a few years, and since retiring from professional tennis, he has competed in a few races. The 4 x 4 x 48 was unlike any running event the former tennis pro had ever attempted before, though, and he was understandably exhausted after the two-day challenge.

4 x 4 x 48

The 4 x 4 x 48 Challenge is simple to explain, but far from easy to complete. Participants run four miles (6.4K) every four hours for 48 hours. This works out to 48 miles (77K) and a lot of short naps (or very little sleep at all) in two days. Goggins has turned this into an official event, and the 2021 edition ran from March 5 to 7.

“Goggins, thank you. I just finished my 4 x 4 x 48,” Blake said in a video he posted to Twitter. “Thank you for coming up with this challenge and putting me to the test. I dug deep plenty in my career to win tennis matches, but nothing like this.”

Blake said he had “no real rest, no real sleep” over the course of the 48-hour event. He added that he questioned himself during each of the 12 four-mile legs, but he pushed through those tough moments and and eventually made it to the finish two days after he started.

Not a new runner

While this was Blake’s first time running the 4 x 4 x 48 Challenge, it wasn’t his first time completing a running event of any kind. After retiring from tennis in 2013, he got into running, and in 2015, he ran the New York City Marathon. He crossed the finish line in 3:51:19.

In 2020, Blake ran 21.1K in the virtual NYC Marathon as part of a relay with running legend Meb Keflezighi. The pair of former professional athletes teamed up to raise funds for a couple of charities. Blake ran to support his own charity, the James Blake Foundation, which raises money for cancer research, while Keflezighi ran for the NYRR Team for Kids.

(03/20/2021) Views: 140 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Natural energy boosters that you can add to your daily routine

Natural energy-boosting drinks are made from plants and do not contain artificial additives. Artificial energy boosters on the other hand contain caffeine, artificial additives, and added sugar. These ingredients can have a lot of undesirable side effects.  For instance, the caffeine in artificial energy drinks can cause anxiety and panic attacks especially if you take too much of it. Irritability, insomnia, and palpitations in the heart are other side effects that can occur due to the excess caffeine that is found in artificial energy drinks. The caffeine in these drinks is not natural unlike that in natural energy drinks.

The added sugar in the energy drinks acts as a stimulator and these drinks may contain as much as 20 teaspoons of sugar in each drink. The number of drinks in these drinks can be more than the one in a bottle of Coca-Cola. This sugar gives you a temporary energy boost but it also comes with many side effects. For instance, the excess sugar triggers your brain to release dopamine which is also produced by addictive drugs and this can make you get a sugar addiction.

Sugar is also reported to increase the inflammation in the brain and trigger the release of a stress hormone called cortisone and this can lower your moods and make you feel sadder than normal. Since sugar also affects your brain function, you may have short concentration spans, reduced short-term memory, and the ability to learn and the sugar also puts you at risk of diabetes and other lifestyle diseases. Since natural energy booster drinks don’t contain these artificial additives, they do not give you these unwanted effects. This is why natural energy boosters are becoming more popular. Given below are some examples of natural energy boosters:

Guayusa Tea

Guayusa tea is an energy drink that comes from an evergreen tree called Camellia sinensis with caffeinated leaves mostly in the areas near the Amazon rainforest. Some of the areas where Guayusa grows are in the southern part of Colombia and the northern part of Peru.  In Ecuador, there is an indigenous group called Kichwa that has used the Guayusa tea for more than a thousand years.  The Guayusa tea is brewed like the normal tea.

Some of the benefits of Guayusa tea include providing energy and strength and therefore most people take it very early in the morning so that they can concentrate at work throughout the day. The Guayusa tea has been nicknamed the “night watchman” because hunters use it before they go hunting to help them stay alert. Other benefits of the Guayusa tea include improving concentration and focus and helping you to stay calm. 

Matcha Tea

Matcha tea is also derived from the Camellia sinensis where these tea plants are covered for about 30 days to prevent direct sunlight. When the tea plants are covered, the amount of chlorophyll that they have increased, and therefore the plants get a green hue that is darker than the regular tea. This also increases the amino acid contents and these are building blocks for proteins. Upon harvesting, the leaves are separated from the stems and veins and then they are ground to make Matcha powder.

Some of the benefits of Matcha include alertness and mental focus, providing antioxidants that destroy the free radicals that cause chronic diseases. Matcha also enhances attention and memory and prevents damage to major organs like the liver and kidney. Matcha tea also reduces the risk of cancer, helps with weight loss, and boosts the health of your heart.

Green Tea

Green tea is made by pan-frying and steaming the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant to heat them. These leaves are then dried. Drying of these leaves prevents them from turning brown and also preserves their green color and fresh taste. When the green tea is brewed, it can either be green or brown and it can have a toasted, steamed, sweet, or grass-like taste. The benefits of green tea include improving memory and concentration, helping with weight loss, reducing the risk of cancer, stroke, heart disease, and other chronic inflammatory conditions.

Turmeric Tea

Turmeric is a spice that is extracted from the plants of the Curcuma longa plant. Most of the turmeric supply comes from India but the plant is now being grown in many parts of the world. The turmeric powder or the grated turmeric root can be used to brew the turmeric tea.  To ensure the purity and hygiene of your turmeric tea, you can grind the turmeric tea for yourself.

Some of the benefits of turmeric tea include boosting energy especially when you combine the tea with physical exercise, and anti-inflammatory properties therefore it helps in the treatment of inflammatory conditions like arthritis. Other benefits of turmeric include boosting the immune function because turmeric has some antioxidants. The tea can therefore help to fight bacterial, viral diseases. Turmeric tea also helps in the treatment of cancer, and liver diseases.

Yerba Mate

Yerba mate is a herb that is common in South American countries like Uruguay, Argentina, and Brazil. The tea is prepared in traditional gourds called “mate” where the yerba herb is grounded in. Coldwater is added to this powder to prepare an infusion together with hot water. A tea-like beverage forms when the yerba infuses into the water. The Yerba mate has caffeine which helps to stay alert and energized. Other benefits of Yerba mate include an increase in mental focus, weight loss, and enhancing performance in sports. The tea also helps to reduce inflammation.

Fresh Fruit Juices

Fresh juices are also important natural energy boosters. Some of the juices that you can take include orange juice and beetroot juice. Beetroots contain nitric acid which dilates blood vessels and improves the blood supply throughout the body while helping to reduce blood pressure. You can mix the beetroots with lemons and apples to increase the energizing effects. This is a drink that you can enjoy on a hot afternoon.

In summary, natural energy boosters do not contain the artificial additives that are in artificial energy boosters like excess caffeine and sugar. In addition to providing energy, natural energy boosters also have other benefits like reducing inflammation and free radicals in the body. These drinks have also been useful in the prevention of cancer and other chronic diseases like liver and kidney diseases. Some of the natural energy boosters include Guayusa tea, Matcha, green tea, beetroot juice, and turmeric tea.

(02/23/2021) Views: 182 ⚡AMP
by Colorado Runner
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The benefits of running after 60

Running after 60 can be as beneficial to your health as it was in your 20s.

There’s no doubt that if you run for fitness your speed will slow down as you age. 

From your 30s onwards, a number of physical changes take place in the average person’s body. Aerobic capacity decreases, muscle mass reduces, muscle elasticity reduces, lung elasticity declines, bone density reduces, your metabolism slows, body fat increases, and your immune system becomes weaker, Owen Barder writes in the book “Running for Fitness.” 

All these changes have an adverse effect on running performance. Yet, older runners can continue to achieve amazing athletic feats. 

Benefits of running after 60

Canadian athlete Ed Whitlock ran a marathon in 2:54:48 at the age of 73. Carlos Lopes set the world marathon record at the age of 38. Hal Higdon, marathon runner and writer, at the age of 52 ran a 10km in 31:08 and a marathon in 2:29:27.

So you can’t run as fast as you did in your 20s and 30s. It’s all relative. The fact is you can continue to run into your 90s. 

The health benefits of running for seniors are generally the same as for everybody else. They include reductions in the risks of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cancer; reduced depression and anxiety; weight control; improved bones, muscles, and joints; improved mobility and coordination, and a psychological sense of well-being.

The risk for developing debilitating conditions increases as you grow older, so the benefits of running are increased. 

Keep in mind that even moderate running is good for your health. At the conference of the European Society of Cardiology, Danish researchers presented data on a subset of 2000 joggers. They found that jogging at a moderate pace for a total of one to two-and-a-half hours per week over two or three sessions reduced the risk of death more than 44 percent over non-runners. 

“Surprisingly, when individuals ran faster, longer or more frequently than this, the protective benefits of running disappeared,” writes Rashelle Brown. “Individuals who ran more often and more vigorously had about the same mortality rate as those who were sedentary.” 

Another study looked at others health benefits of running for seniors: the effects of running versus walking on functional movement of 30 adults with an average age of 69. The study found that those who ran several days per week walked with the same muscular economy of average 20-year-olds. 

If you want to start running for the first time or take up running after a long lull, it’s important to start out slowly. 

First, you should let your doctor know of your plans and take heed of any concerns she might have. 

Starting out with a walk or run program is a great strategy to build your muscles and endurance without risking injury that will set you back. Keep in mind walking can be just as health as running, except you have to walk longer to get the same health benefits as running.

Recovery after running

You also have to prioritize recovery more than when you were younger and build this into your running schedule. Also, use your experience to make more informed choices about your running. 

Muscle mass declines with age, so you need some strength training to counter that. Just don’t overdo it. Stressing core exercises or using light dumbbells would do the trick. 

Be diligent about stretching, both before and after exercise. As you age your flexibility decreases, and stretching compensates for that. 

Other advice includes booking a regular massage to loosen the muscles that tighten from running, eating well (meaning a diet high in protein, carbs, fruits and vegetables), going soft by running on surfaces with some give like trails or even grass, and staying motivated. 

“Keep entering races so you always have goals,” Jo Pavey writes in Runner’s World. “If you feel your fastest times are behind you, think about setting yourself a new set of (personal bests) for your new age group.”

(02/09/2021) Views: 186 ⚡AMP
by Janet O’Dell
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Runners will be able to support cancer charity at 2021 London Marathon

North-east people will find out today if they have been successful in securing a ballot spot in this year's London Marathon.

The event on Sunday, October 3, sponsored by Virgin Money, is set to be the biggest staged with 50,000 running from Blackheath to The Mall and another 50,000 running the virtual marathon from wherever they are in the world.

Macmillan Cancer Support is the charity of the year for Virgin Money and official charity partner for the 2021 London Marathon, and is inviting lucky runners who bagged themselves a ballot spot to join and fundraise for #TeamMacmillan, while reminding those who missed out that there is still time to apply for a charity place.

Funds raised through the Macmillan places will help the charity provide vital support, at a time when it is facing a loss of income due to Covid-19, and continue to do whatever it takes to be there for everyone, from day one of their cancer diagnosis.

Executive director fundraising, marketing and innovation for Macmillan Cancer Support Claire Rowney said: “We’re thrilled to be the official charity of the year for the 2021 Virgin Money London Marathon and can’t wait to cheer on our Team Macmillan runners in what is set to be the biggest marathon ever.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on our income, at a time when people living with cancer need our support more than ever to help navigate through this anxious period.

"The vital funds raised through runners and supporters of this year’s event will help us continue to do whatever it takes to be there for everyone living with cancer.

“Whether you’re planning to run the 26.2 miles, cheer on our runners from the side-lines or make a donation as part of Team Macmillan, you will be helping us be there for everyone, from day one of their diagnosis.”

New research published by Macmillan Cancer Support reveals that an estimated 530,000 people across Scotland have turned to running or jogging to look after their mental health during the Covid-19 crisis.

People can join #TeamMacmillan with their ballot spot or can apply for a charity place in the 2021 Virgin Money London Marathon, at LondonMarathon.Macmillan.org.uk

(02/08/2021) Views: 268 ⚡AMP
by Kyle Ritchie
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin 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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In Enemy Territory, Bills Fan Runs Marathon Around Monday Night Football Game

In a Josh Allen jersey, he ran 26.2 miles and saw the quarterback come out of the tunnel along the way.

The Bills Mafia is no stranger to sacrifice and tailgating greatness. The passionate fanbase of the Buffalo Bills football team turns out every home game in often near- or below-freezing temperatures while performing WWE-style slams and finishers through tables like a sacrificial offering to the football gods—or to quarterback Josh Allen.

So it’s no surprise that Bills fans are ecstatic about clinching their first AFC East title since 1995 and making the playoffs for the second time this century.

Colin Dee was one of these lifelong fans. His fandom stretched from his days growing up in Rochester, New York, and stayed with him even after he left in third grade to move to North Carolina.

Now, Dee resides in the Foxborough, Massachusetts, which is home to the rival New England Patriots. Once the Bills had the playoffs and the division in the bag, he and his fellow fans celebrated virtually, leading to Dee’s friend throwing him a dare.

“In mid-April when the schedule came out, we didn’t think COVID would last to December, so we planned to go to the Monday Night game,” Dee told Runner’s World. “We gotta go, but when we realized we couldn’t, they told me I had to do something. Originally it was just a run. Then it was a 5K. In the end, I was dared to do a marathon.”

Dee wasn’t a stranger to the distance. He had completed five marathons, inspired by his lifelong running dad. It was that family tradition that was passed down instead of his dad’s New York Giants fandom that Dee’s grandfather, a Bills fan, on his mom’s side was adamantly against.

Dee’s true Bills Mafia passion amped up in college. While moving in freshman year at the University of Dayton, Dee discovered a friend who moved away in the second grade to Chicago—also a Bills fan—lived next door.

The two reconnected and even splurged on season tickets their sophomore year and made the roughly six-hour drive for home games in the fall. They’ve been season-ticket holders ever since. Plus, they even converted Dee’s dad to be a Bills fan.

“My dad got me into running, and I got him into the Bills,” Dee said. “My dad has done a couple ultras and was trying to do a 100 miler. Here I am doing a marathon outside a stadium. People think I’m a nut.”

It was also Dee’s childhood friend who dared him to do the marathon. While Dee was determined to do it, as the week went on, he realized he could also do the run and try to raise money for charity.

Thinking about which to pick, Dee turned to inspiration from Bills quarterback Josh Allen. Bills Mafia has gotten behind their leader since Allen’s grandmother died earlier in the season and fans followed by donating over $1 million to Oishei Children's Hospital.

Dee hoped people would donate at least 17 cents per mile—an homage to Allen’s number—or a nominal $4.45 for the entire run.

“There’s people going through a lot worse things right now in the world, and if we can do something like this for a kid or a family going through cancer, you gotta do it,” Dee said. “If it coincides with things like the Bills and the work they’re doing with Josh Allen, even better.”

A little over a week later, Dee kept his word and lined up, untrained, around 4:30 p.m. on December 28 in his Josh Allen jersey for a marathon run through the empty parking lots and uncrowded sidewalks around Gillette Stadium. The start time was before the game because Dee had to beat the Massachusetts COVID curfew of 10 p.m. ET.

Dee had a route around the facility mapped out, but on the first lap, he had to get creative because he accidentally ended up in a restricted area and was chased out by security. That lap ended up being the longest at 2.2 miles. After that, he settled into a 1.3 out and back that ran by an opening that looked onto the field.

“People think I’m some drunk guy running around,” Dee thought out loud as he ran.

While his family crewed him, he charged through the first miles at an pace as fans of both teams who happened to be in the area (very few because of COVID) cheered and jeered at the person running around the stadium in a jersey.

He’d hear people screaming, “Josh Allen,” all night for his jersey. However, around mile 6 when he heard that, it wasn’t directed at him. In fact, as he ran by the opening to the field, Josh Allen was actually running through the tunnel to the field to warm up.

After that, Dee kept up his pace as he saw the fireworks mark the start of Monday Night Football and listened to the game from the outside.

The marathon would take him 5:08:44, but he did it and was able to recover with some food, his family, and the second half of the game.

Not only that, he’s also ended up raising more than $3,200 for Oishei Children's Hospital. 

“This didn’t start as anything more than a dare made over a couple of beers,” Dee said. “Then I thought we need this to go back to Buffalo. I don’t want to give this to Boston. With all the good that has come from Oishei and the Bills connection, he knew we had to do it. I’m so happy with what we’ve done so far.”

To make the night even sweeter, the Bills ran away with a 38-9 victory on the road.

(01/09/2021) Views: 225 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Bill Anderson ran at least one mile every day for over 44 years has passed away

Bill Anderson has passed away.  He has been fighting prostate cancer since 1999.

"He was a fighter," says his brother Bob Anderson (director of My Best Runs).  "I know he would be proud to know that he was able to run a mile just ten days before his death.  R.I.P. The world will miss you."  

In 2018 he shared his secrets with MBR.  Bill Anderson (72) started his running streak on September 27, 1976 in Fort Worth Texas. He has run at least one mile everyday since then. He is currently number ten on the Official USA Active Running Streak List.

"My brother Bill has never been injured," says Bob Anderson. Asked why he has never been injured he says, "Shoes are the hidden secret to avoid injuries. I make sure they are always fresh," Bill says.

"Secondly I always run within my capacity. Thirdly, I make sure I enjoy every run. Fourth, I know myself well enough to anticipate a potential issue before it happens."

His daughter (Barb) posted this on FB on December 23, 2020.  

“The Streak has ended…

My dad did not do something yesterday that he’d done the past 16,000 + days – he did not go run at least one mile.

On September 27, 1976, he went for a run…I was 2 years old.  He continued that for 44 years, 2 months and 25 days and ended his running career with the 10th longest documented running streak in the United States.

The rules?  At least one mile, outside, in running shoes.

At some point the streak became another family member that we’ve all formed a complicated relationship with, especially my mom, who has worried about him, followed him in the car in the hail or after a little too much to drink, cursed the inconvenience of the “damn streak” on occasion and supported him every day. 

When I was in high school, I started running with him.  The first time I ran four miles, I was with my dad and we had about a third of a mile to go, all uphill.  I was ready to quit when he calmly said, “At this point it’s really just a matter of one’s character.”  I didn’t stop.

I’ve run with him numerous distances, in numerous locations, sometimes in formal races and sometime just around the hood. But my dad’s run in every state, dozens of countries and incredible ranges of temperatures and weather conditions, juggling time zones, international date lines, snow, wind, rain, prostate cancer surgeries, bladder cancer, Parkinson’s, nine chemo cycles, a ruptured appendix and age. 

On Monday the 21st my mom practically pushed him out the front door and followed him in the car one last time, this time for concern of his mental acuity.  

I ran with him on Tuesday the 22nd, not knowing but somehow feeling the final curtain call.  We reminisced about our most memorable runs together – like the one time, a very low-to-the-ground bulldog joined us from nowhere and ran at least a mile right between us.  We both thought that dog would go into cardiac arrest.  At some point he bailed on us but when we got back to the house, we jumped in the car to try and find him because we were convinced that he was dead, lost or both.  We never did find him. 

On Wednesday the 23rd after being rushed to the hospital, he announced with dignity, strength and no regret, that the streak was over. 

He made the right decision.  But I can’t help feeling like we lost a family member yesterday.  

My dad has always been my hero.  Dad, today I went for a run and even though I cried through half of it, I ran with new purpose and I crushed it.  I love you.”

Click on link (the title) to listen to Bill talk about his streak.  

(01/04/2021) Views: 514 ⚡AMP
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The man who ran a marathon in every country in the world

"All of a sudden, I had this horrendous pain in my shoulder and chest. You know what the tell-tale signs are, but when you feel it yourself, it's very certain what's going on."

Nick Butter suffered a minor heart attack two miles from the finish line of a marathon on the Polynesian island of Samoa. This was the 182nd marathon of a trip in which, over the course of 674 days, he ran one in every country in the world. He's the first person to achieve such a feat.

By this stage of the challenge, he'd already been shot at, mugged at gunpoint and attacked by dogs. It was one more obstacle to overcome. And the way it came about is quite typical of his habit of, well, taking a lot on.

Butter often had a taxi driver, motorcyclist or cyclist with him, who would provide help with navigation, water and safety. On this occasion, a man from his hotel, Sani, had volunteered.

Unfortunately, it turned out that Sani hadn't ridden a bike for 20 years.

With eight miles left for Butter to run, Sani was in some pain and had to dismount. Rather than stop, or ask for help, Butter decided to run the rest of the marathon while pushing the bike and water himself.

"It was uphill, in 45C-plus heat, when I suddenly I had this pain," Butter says.

Without anyone around and no phone signal, he took a break by the side of the road and waited it out. Eventually, Sani caught up and took the bike back so that Butter, determined to finish, could hobble through the last section.

Afterwards he spoke to doctors and family friends who worked as medics. They all confirmed the symptoms of a heart attack. That didn't stop him flying to New Zealand to run another marathon just two days later. It's also worth mentioning he has a family history of heart problems.

"The medical answer is that I should have slowed down after that, but the actual answer is that I didn't," says Butter. He completed 211 consecutive marathons around the world - 193 in member countries of the United Nations, plus 18 more for "future-proofing".

It was in 2016 that a 26-year-old Butter had the idea. The goal was to raise money for Prostate Cancer UK.

"I wanted it to be big," Butter says. "It had to involve running and travel and it had to invoke something that Kev had said to me, which was 'don't wait for a diagnosis'."

A simple internet search for 'has anyone ever run a marathon in every country?' brought a negative answer.

"I couldn't believe it," he says. "We've put people on the moon! Of course, now I know why it's not been done before - it's very, very difficult."

After telling his family and friends, Butter started planning.

"I registered with Guinness World Records, spoke with some adventurer and runner friends and then I started to understand that I needed to contact media outlets, embassies, running clubs around the world. Hotels, people to do my safety, people to do my visas, working out a route, understanding the weather conditions, what my body would need to go through."

He says that beyond raising money, the goal was to spread awareness.

"I did something like 140 live TV appearances in different countries," Butter says. There were personal testimonies too.

"We had people come to us who previously hadn't any idea of prostate cancer, but, after speaking to us, got tested and discovered that they had it. Because they caught it early, they were fine."

Since finishing the trip, he has been doing speaking tours (lockdowns permitting), using his story to help educate. He's also published a book, Running The World.

Butter, writing in the closing chapter about his final leg of the 196-marathon trip, which began in Marathon, Greece, describes Webber turning up to run with him.

Five years on from Webber's terminal prostate cancer diagnosis, in which he was given an estimated two years to live, he and Butter crossed the finish line in Athens hand-in-hand.

The pair still talk regularly, and Butter says his friend is still running and still smiling.

(12/22/2020) Views: 226 ⚡AMP
by Ciaran Varley
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The importance of exercise to stay healthy, energetic and independent as you get older

Many adults aged 65 and over spend, on average, 10 hours or more each day sitting or lying down, making them the most sedentary age group.

They're paying a high price for their inactivity, with higher rates of falls, obesity, heart disease and early death compared with the general population.

As you get older, it becomes even more important to remain active if you want to stay healthy and maintain your independence.

If you do not stay active, all the things you've always enjoyed doing and taken for granted may start to become that little bit harder.

You may struggle to pursue simple pleasures, such as playing with the grandchildren, walking to the shops, leisure activities and meeting up with friends.

You might start to get aches and pains you never had before and have less energy to go out. You may also be more vulnerable to falling. 

This can all lead to being less able to look after yourself and do the things you enjoy.

Strong evidence

There's strong evidence that people who are active have a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, depression and dementia.

If you want to stay pain-free, reduce your risk of mental illness, and be able to go out and stay independent well into old age, you're advised to keep moving.

Recent evidence suggests that regular exercise can reduce the risk of falling in older adults.

It's that simple. There are lots of ways you can get active, and it's not just about exercising.

"As people get older and their bodies decline in function, physical activity helps to slow that decline," says Dr Nick Cavill, a health-promotion consultant.

"It's important they remain active or even increase their activity as they get older."

Most people as they get older want to stay in touch with society – their community, friends and neighbours – and being active can ensure they keep doing that.

What is physical activity?

Physical activity is anything that gets your body moving. It includes anything from walking and gardening to recreational sport.

Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate activity every week.

Ideally, you should try to do something every day, preferably in bouts of 10 minutes of activity or more.

One way of achieving 150 minutes of activity is to do 30 minutes on at least 5 days a week.

(12/15/2020) Views: 185 ⚡AMP
by NHS
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4 Foods That Help Fight Post-Run Inflammation

These foods and spices pack an anti-inflammatory punch and are worth incorporating into your diet.

Inflammation is your body’s normal response to tissue damage. However, in excess, it can wreak havoc on your body, triggering everything from minor aches and pains to more serious issues like heart disease and cancer. For runners, keeping inflammation to a minimum can aid in the recovery process. When inflammation becomes widespread and chronic, recovery between runs takes longer, and performance undoubtedly suffers.

While many folks may immediately reach right for the over-the-counter NSAID, consider that the foods we eat can play a role in fighting inflammation.

Rather than detailing all of the foods to eliminate, let’s look instead at foods to add to your daily diet. Your best defense is to increase your intake of fruits and vegetables. As a side benefit, you’ll also be upping your antioxidant intake, which helps with the oxidative stress that comes with endurance running/racing. Certain foods and spices pack even more of an anti-inflammatory punch and are worth incorporating into your diet.

Turmeric

In my humble opinion, turmeric is truly a superhero in the spice world. In studies, turmeric has demonstrated significant anti-inflammatory ability. Curcumin, the primary anti-inflammatory compound in turmeric, is shown to be comparable to traditional over-the-counter drugs. Adding ginger or black pepper will increase its effectiveness.

Cherries

Cherries have been used since the 1950s in the treatment of gout and arthritis. Studies confirm that cherries and cherry juice reduce inflammation and pain.

Watermelon

The lycopene in watermelon is a well-documented inhibitor of many inflammatory processes. A study conducted in Spain showed watermelon to be effective in preventing exercise-related muscle soreness.

Ginger

The anti-inflammatory compounds, gingerols, have been shown to help reduce arthritis-related pain, as well as exercise-induced pain. Although this list is by no means complete, it highlights some of the most effective natural anti-inflammatories that can be found right in the produce department.

(12/12/2020) Views: 193 ⚡AMP
by Podium Runner
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Kenya's Brigid Kosgei dismisses fears over virus and Delhi pollution

Women’s marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei said on Thursday she was gearing up for New Delhi’s half-marathon on Sunday, dismissing fears around the novel coronavirus outbreak and polluted air in the capital city.

The 26-year-old, who won the London Marathon in October, will race alongside many of the world’s leading long-distance runners at the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon 2020.

“When I told my family that I want to go to India for a marathon even during a pandemic, they supported my decision and told me to do well and take care of myself,” Kosgei told reporters at a news conference on Thursday.

India’s confimed cases of coronavirus infections stands at 9.27 million, the second-highest in the world after the United States, according to a Reuters tally.

Elite runners were being tested daily for infections and kept in bio-secure bubbles, race organiser Procam International said, adding there would be 60 healthcare officials across the course for health emergencies on Sunday.

To tackle Delhi’s hazardous air, anti-smog machines would be installed along the 21-km route for the elite runners, and sprayed with treated water.

Hundreds of other enthusiasts were participating in the shorter races.

Doctors have slammed the holding of a marathon in Delhi, which is facing one of the worst spells of air pollution this year, complicating efforts for controlling the coronavirus outbreak.

On Thursday, the average concentration of deadly particulate matter PM2.5, which can potentially cause respiratory diseases including lung cancer, was seven times the prescribed safe limit of the World Health Organisation.

Each year Delhi suffers one of the worst air pollution levels globally partly due to local vehicle emissions, toxic waste and smoke from the thousands of small unregulated industrial units.

(11/26/2020) Views: 298 ⚡AMP
by Neha Arora
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Airtel Delhi Half Marathon

Airtel Delhi Half Marathon

Ethiopia’s Birhanu Legese and Almaz Ayana took the honours at the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon, crossing the line in the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in 59:46 and 1:07:11 respectively to win, world and Olympic 10,000m champion Ayana was making her debut over the half marathon distance but hardly looked like a novice as she led home an Ethiopian clean sweep of...

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Dr. Jill Biden is a runner and in fact has run a marathon

The Second Lady is still active in the Komen Race for the Cure.

It was a charity race that got you started running, wasn’t it?

I started running after Joe and I were asked to kick off a Komen Race for the Cure in the early ’90s. After sounding the horn, we ran to get out of everyone’s way, and I got so winded that I said, “I’m going to start running.” My first run was around my neighborhood in Delaware—about a third of a mile. I kept increasing the distance until I got the bug.

What did you like about it?

It was such a feeling of freedom. I love running outside. It was a good feeling. I mean, I felt good about myself, and so that’s why I continued. I started when I was, what, 40, so I’ve been running almost 20 years. And I’ve been pretty consistent with it. I mean, I’ve had things in my life happen where I’ve had to slow down a little bit, but I’ve always gone back to it.

How many Susan G. Komen races have you participated in?

Oh, I’m not sure about the exact number—probably a handful or so. Over the years I’ve also completed several 5K, 10K, and half-marathon races for other cancer charities.

Why are you participating in the Komen race this year?

This year, I am serving as the Honorary Chair for the Washington D.C. Race for the Cure along with Joe. It’s the second year in a row we’ve done this, and we are honored to continue the tradition. On the eve of race day, Joe and I will host breast-cancer survivors for a special reception at our home. It’s a really special event and gives us a chance to spend time with survivors and their loved ones before the race. We’re really looking forward to it.

In addition to your work with Susan G. Komen Race for a Cure, you’ve been very involved in breast-cancer awareness. Why is it such an important issue for you?

Back in the early ’90s, I had several friends who got breast cancer. One died. I felt like I had to do something, and I couldn’t just sit by. Being an educator, I thought, Well, maybe there’s something I could do in education. So I started the Biden Breast Health Initiative, and I have health-care professionals go to high schools in Delaware, and we talk to them about good health practices, breast self-examination, and early detection. So not only is that awareness created for them, but they take that message home to their moms and grandmoms, and they start a dialogue. We’ve reached more than 10,000 young women.

What’s typical for a daily workout? Where do you usually run and how many miles?

Well, you know, my goal is five miles at a nine- to 10-minute pace five days a week. But between teaching and administration responsibilities, I barely make that any more. Like, for instance, this morning I had a breast-cancer event here [at the house, the Vice President’s Residence at the United States Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C.] at breakfast. I knew I was limited for time, so I did a little over four miles on the treadmill. I try to adapt my workout to where I am—I could be in another city or country—so it often depends on what I’m doing. I also try to incorporate a little bit of weight training, because I think that’s really good for your bones. That’s my basic workout.

How do you change your training when you’re preparing for a race, as you are now?

When I’ve done races, I’ve been pretty disciplined about setting up a plan for myself and then following that plan on a daily basis. That’s how I got ready for the 1998 Marine Corps Marathon, which is the only one I’ve done. I’ve done several half-marathons and 10-mile races. In the next couple months, I would love to train for the Army 10-Miler [in Washington, D.C.], and so I feel like I could work up to that.

You’re pretty close to the race in the beginning of June, so what are you aiming for now? Are you still doing five miles or are you trying to ramp it up?

Usually because of time, I can’t go over five miles—sometimes maybe I could do six or seven, and sometimes I could just do three. Because, you know, my days are pretty filled, so I have to run in the morning or whenever I have time, and then I’ve got to build in that time to get back and showered and changed and read my briefing for an event. I have to factor all of those things in.

So what’s your best time?

My best time was my only time [the Marine Corps Marathon]. I finished in 4:30:32. My goal was 4:30, so I feel like I met that goal and I was ecstatic. I have to say it was one of the highlights of my life. I saw my family at several spots along the way. And I tell you, at the end of that race, I felt like I could run five more miles. My adrenaline was through the roof.

Would you consider running another marathon?

I always said I only wanted to do one marathon, but I’ve also learned to never say never!

So now do you run with the Secret Service?

Oh, yeah. That’s another big change in my life now—I usually have someone ahead of me and someone behind me. But they’ve been great. I just say to them, “I need to pretend you’re not here,” because I love to run by myself, and they’re pretty respectful of that.

Are the Secret Service in cars or are they actually running?

No, these guys are runners. I mean, these guys are fit, and they’re good runners.

You said you love to run by yourself. Why is that? Is it because you use that time to think or is it meditative for you?

I think that running creates a sense of balance in my life. And it really calms me down. It’s a great feeling to just get out and lose myself in a run. I think that’s why I continue to run because, as you know, once you get that, you kind of crave that time for yourself.

So I guess you don’t exercise with your husband?

Sometimes Joe runs with me, but he’s not a runner. He’s an athlete, and he does a lot of exercise. Like last night, he was playing football out on the front lawn with our granddaughter who loves to play football. So he likes to do a lot of sports, but I think once you’re a runner, you really stick with it.

But I have heard you do run with some of your staff.

A lot of people on my staff run, so that’s nice. If we get time and we’re in a different city, we’ll go out and do a run.

Obviously this is a very fit administration. Is it motivating? The President and First Lady are known for it. Do you ever run with either the President or First Lady?

You know, I really love what Michelle is doing with Let’s Move! Let’s face it, we really did need something like this in this country to fight childhood obesity. I see Michelle at events or we pass one another on the way to meetings, but life is a little too hectic. I mean, that would be great, but it just isn’t reality that we would have time to do that.

So do you feel more pressure to perform well as a runner now that everyone knows you?

Well, when I’m out running, people don’t recognize me, which is great. I don’t feel pressure; I’m not out to beat anybody or hit a certain time. I just do it for the enjoyment of it. I’m doing it for myself.

How do you make the time to run? How do you carve that time out?

Well, I definitely make it a priority. That’s not always possible, but my office knows that it goes first on the list. It’s really an important part of my life, and I try to be pretty true to it.

Do you have a preferred workout outfit?

I don’t have a workout outfit. The usual, you know, black pants and a T-shirt.

Do you listen to music when you run?

Oh, yeah, I do.

Can I ask what’s on your iPod?

What’s on my iPod? Well, certainly Bruce Springsteen. [Biden was born in New Jersey.] I don’t know what else. My kids are runners, by the way. I have two sons and a daughter and two daughters-in-law, and they’re triathletes, my two sons and their wives. So if they hear something good, they’ll say, “Oh, Mom, let me put this on your iPod.”

(11/08/2020) Views: 406 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Kolt Codner runs his first marathon around hospital for 4-year-old son with cancer

There were two thoughts pushing Kolt Codner forward in his first marathon race: his 4-year-old son Andrew's fight against cancer and the hospital that provides him care.

Codner, of Poland, Ohio, ran 26.2 miles around Akron Children's Hospital on October 17 to raise money for the hospital treating his son, who has 26 months left in his treatment.

In early May, Codner and his wife Tristan received a phone call that Andrew had a bed waiting for him in the hematology and oncology unit of the hospital.

A day that began as a visit to the pediatrician for Andrew's swollen face had resulted in a diagnosis of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a common childhood cancer.

Codner's run served to show his appreciation to the hospital staff that has turned a traumatic experience like cancer treatment into one his young son faces bravely, Codner says.

"The folks at Akron Children's have taken something that should be scary and terrifying and made it this amazing badge of honor to recognize the superhero that he is," Codner told CNN. "We couldn't think of a better thing to contribute to and spend time trying to help raise funds to ensure that all kids have access to the same amazing experience as Andrew has had at Akron Children's."

Codner participated in the race as part of the virtual FirstEnergy Akron Marathon, Half Marathon & Team Relay, which replaced the hospital's yearly marathon due to the coronavirus pandemic. According to the virtual marathon guidelines, runners can race at any location or pace, and Codner decided to run his marathon around the hospital to spotlight their work.

On the day of the race, Codner wrote Andrew's name on the top of his running shoes to keep him motivated. Friends and family were stationed outside the hospital to cheer him on, in a course that took 5 hours and 35 laps to complete. His son was even able to run with him across the finish line and award him a medal.

"To see him running and doing that last lap with me was just incredible," Codner said.

By the end of the run, Codner had raised 10 times more than his initial goal of $1,000, according to a hospital press release. The fund has reached over $13,000 in donations and has expanded its window until November 30.

Dr. Megan Sampson, a pediatric oncologist who has treated Andrew at the hospital, praises the Codner family.

"It just amazed me that during this scary time that he was thinking about doing this," said Sampson, referring to Codner's run and the attention he has drawn to the hospital's work.

Andrew's prognosis is good and he's responding well to the treatment he has received, but he still has a long way to go, Sampson says.

(10/28/2020) Views: 271 ⚡AMP
by Kelsie Smith
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Akron Marathon Race Series

Akron Marathon Race Series

The marquee event of the Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series, the Akron Marathon, Half Marathon, & Team Relay presented by First Energy receives a fresh new look ! Runners will experience an unforgettable start inside the historic grounds of Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens before taking an exclusive foot tour of the City of Akron. The Goodyear Half...

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Jordan Crookes a 23-year-old successfully ran the virtual London Marathon 2020 despite struggling with his Cerebral Palsy

Jordan Crookes, of Mitcham, smashed his fundraising challenge for Cerebral Palsy Sport at the beginning of October.

 After being born prematurely, Jordan faced a series of challenges due to his left side being much weaker than his right. 

He was unable to crawl, his walking was delayed and he had issues with his speech and eyesight.

 Growing up, Jordan was subject to bullying whilst dealing with "the pressure of daily school life". He left mainstream school to attend a site more catered to his academic needs. 

Speaking about his condition, Jordan said: "Day to day tasks that many take for granted are a daily struggle for me. For example, locking a door with a key and tying shoelaces with a weak left hand is just a nightmare.

 "My escape from daily life and pressures was to play football, football was my world. But once starting work, I was unable to continue with my love of football due to shift patterns.

 “Running became my new love, it was able to fit around my work schedule and is now my escape from all the challenges that I face hour after hour. Running gave me a new focus in life."

Putting his new skills to the test, Jordan decided to sign up for a 10k run event.

 "To run alongside hundreds of people and be treated as an equal, to have the same end goal as everyone to just cross the finish line is an amazing feeling," Jordan said. 

Jordan's first 10k gave him the "bug" to run more and participate in further events, which overtime helped him prepare to run several half marathons.

 And after signing up to volunteer at London Marathon 2019, Jordan decided to challenge himself further.

 He said: "Last year at the marathon, I greeted people representing Children with Cancer UK.

"It was an amazing and emotional experience to see people so determined and focused. This gave me a new goal, to train, run and finish the London Marathon 2020."

Jordan completed his mission on October 4, and ran a total of 26.2 miles, finishing his goal at Morden Hall Park.

(10/20/2020) Views: 312 ⚡AMP
by Monica Charsley
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin 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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Eugene woman sets Oregon Pacific Crest Trail speed record: 455 miles in 7 days

When Emily Halnon’s mother died of cancer earlier this year, she decided to honor her memory by trying something big. 

She chose one of Oregon’s most grueling challenges. 

In the early morning darkness of Aug. 1, the 35-year-old Eugene resident laced up her shoes at the Oregon-California border and stepped onto the Pacific Crest Trail.

Then she started running.

Over the next week, Halnon ran up mountains and down river valleys, through a frigid thunderstorm and boiling temperatures, felt her shins ache and feet swell up on 17-hour days in remote wilderness.

When she reached the Washington border on Aug. 9, Halnon had set a new speed record for the Oregon section of the PCT: 455 miles in 7 days, 19 hours and 23 minutes.

That’s averaging 57 miles per day.

The supported speed record — meaning she was helped by a team along the way — is the fastest among both men and women, and the fastest overall, according to the website Fastest Known Time, the best metric for tracking trail times.  

In the process, Halnon raised $32,000 for the Brave Like Gabe foundation, which funds rare cancer research.

“It was a celebration of my mom — she was my fuel,” Halnon said. “There have been days when the grief is crushing. Channeling myself into this, into something that would make her proud and that felt like it mattered, was my way of working through it.”

But the run was also about fun. Halnon was supported by a team of friends who threw impromptu dance parties on the trail, invented romance stories to keep her smiling and created a wilderness spa one night near Diamond Peak. 

“There was a lot of singing and dancing and laughing — Emily has fun with the process,” said Eric Suchman, a close friend and social studies teacher at North Eugene High School. “But she's also very tough, very driven. When things are difficult, she can dig deep.”

“Emily is a badass,” said Danielle Snyder, who previously held the women's speed record on the Oregon PCT. “She can be laid-back and goofy. But in the end, she’s a badass.”

Distance running comes in the family

Emily Halnon was inspired by her mother. 

Growing up in Vermont, Andrea Halnon modeled how to be an athlete and runner even in later years.    

"She had a health scare when I was a teenager and that motivated her to start being more physically active," Emily Halnon said. 

It started with walking 5 kilometer races. Then running them. Next came 10 kilometer races and a half marathon. The year Andrea Halnon turned 50, she ran her first marathon. Not finished, she learned to swim so she could complete a triathlon at 60.

The mother inspired her daughter. The duo ran their first marathon together on Emily's 23rd birthday.

“She beat me by 20 minutes,” Emily said. 

The first time Emily visited Oregon was to run the Eugene marathon. But it was trail running in the Pacific Northwest that brought her in Oregon for good, where she started running major distance, including five 100-mile ultramarathons. Her mom supported her every step.

“The joke was how many times she would post on Facebook during those races,” Emily Halnon said. “It was usually about 18 times per race." 

Andrea Halnon was diagnosed with a rare form of uterine cancer in December of 2018 at 65 years old.

“When that first round of chemo didn't work, her oncologist had terrifyingly few options to offer her,” Emily Halnon wrote on Instagram. “One of them was giving up, something my tenacious mother would never do. But dealing with rare cancer often means running out of options. And my mom ran out of treatment options within months of her diagnosis.”

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Andrea Halnon fought for 13 months, still riding her bike, walking and staying active amid chemotherapy. 

“The way she fought was extraordinary,” Emily Halnon said.

Andrea Halnon died in January. But her toughness lived on through her daughter.

Inspiring more female athletes

The idea of establishing speed records in the outdoors isn’t a new idea, but its appeal has grown over the past decade.

In a time when every blank spot on the map has been filled, and every mountain route climbed, doing adventures in the fastest known time — known as an FKT — has become one way athletes test themselves.

Emily Halnon had her eye on the Oregon PCT since 2015, but once her mom passed, she decided she’d shoot for the FKT.

One of the first people she reached out to was Snyder, who’d set the women’s speed record in 2019. Snyder responded with enthusiasm.

“I work with women to be bold and step into their own, and it was really exciting to have Emily go for it,” said Snyder, who finished the Oregon PCT in 9 days and 15 hours. “Trail running draws a lot more males than females, especially for FKTs. Encouraging more women to go for them is about more than a record.”

Halnon upped her training and milage. She ran the Timberline Trail and climbed Hardesty Mountain three times in one day.   

“In a lot of ways, I’ve been training for this for eight years,” she said. 

How to prove a record

Part of the FTK isn’t just accomplishing it, but being able to prove the record.

As speed records become popularized, some records have proved to be fraudulent. The bar is high for proving a FKT, especially on a high profile route like the Oregon PCT.

Halnon signed up for a Garmin In Reach that allowed people to track her, a blue dot on the map, from a computer screen. In addition to time-stamped pictures, she got a second GPS device — a watch — that took a computerized track she could submit.

“There’s not a governing body for FKTs,” she said. “But the process is pretty rigorous." 

The run and her team

On Aug. 1, Halnon headed to the PCT on the Oregon-California border. It was dark when she began running, but that would become a common theme. 

Her pace was straightforward: run strong and steady on flat, downhill or slightly uphill terrain, while moving to a “strong hike” for steep climbs.   

Earlier that week she’d announced her attempt on Instagram, adding that she would be raising money for rare cancer research. She had modest expectations — maybe $4,500.

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“I waffled on the fundraising part of it in the middle of a pandemic,” she said. “But I just decided, if people have the means to give, great. If not, that’s understandable.”

Halnon’s attempt was for a “supported” record — as opposed to a self-supported record. It means she had a team, and it turned the effort into a communal undertaking. 

Halnon’s boyfriend Ian Petersen and dog Dilly met her at many trail crossings for water, fresh clothes, shoes, snacks and sometimes a hot meal — like a race car coming into a pit stop. Different friends paced her on the trail. 

The challenge of eating and romance novels

The first two days spanned a massive area, taking her from California all the way to Crater Lake National Park — a total of 131.5 miles. 

And it became clear what a big challenge might be: eating.

“Every half hour I’d say, ‘time to eat again,’ and she just hated that,” said Snyder, who ran with Halnon on the second day. “When you’re running like this, your body stops processing food as well. You feel crappy and don’t want to eat. It makes you feel tired and nauseous.

“I’d say: ‘I don’t care what you say, you have to eat. If you don’t, you won’t make it through the day, let alone to Washington.’”

Far from the cliché of Cliff Bars and Gu Energy packets, Halnon and many ultra runners opt for tastier fare: Cheetos, gummy worms, Swedish fish, rice crispy treats and Fritos. At stops, she ate quesadillas and instant mash potatoes. 

The days were long. She averaged 16 to 17 hours each day, reaching camp in darkness, sleeping 2 to 5 hours and getting up before dawn to do it again.

Her feet swelled up a half size and shins ached. The mental willingness to keep going meant Halnon’s running partners also had to keep things fun. They danced, sang Taylor Swift music and made up romance novellas.  

“When I did my run, I listened to a lot of romance novels to keep me occupied,” Snyder said. “They’re great. So, on the second day, Emily told me to play her one, but I hadn’t downloaded any. So she was like: ‘Fine! Then you have to tell me a romance story!’

“So I made up a romance story for her. I think the major plot points were about me finding a random trail man and falling in love in the forest. It was pretty bad, but it worked, and it helped us get through a lot of miles.”

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The best day on the PCT: hog dogs, friends and Diamond Peak

There were plenty of difficult days on the trail, but the highlight was day four — 48 miles from  Windigo Pass to Charlton Lake.

The run brought her past emerald lakes and below Diamond Peak, and was close enough to Eugene that her friends threw a mini trail party. 

After 22 miles, she stopped for a break and was surprised when her friend Eric Suchman brought her a hot dog, French fries and ice-cold Powerade from Dairy Queen.

“It was so perfect,” she said. “I’d been fantasizing about a cold beverage for miles and love hot dogs."

That night, after passing the 200-mile mark, she ran into camp in daylight for the first and only time — and she wasn't alone.  

“My Eugene running friends have showed up in force,” she wrote on Instagram. “They meet me 3 miles up the trail to run me in hooting and hollering, to a beautiful lakeshore set up with a grill, coolers, a fireside massage and friends! Everything a girl could dream of greeting her halfway through this PCT run.

“I am ready to head back out onto the trail with recharged legs and a fuller heart and soul.”

She would need that boost. The weather had changed and would bring the biggest challenge yet.

The worst day: thunderstorm and darkness across Mount Jefferson

Day six was one Halnon had been waiting for the entire trip: 59 miles from McKenzie Pass to Brietenbush Lake, across the Three Sisters and Mount Jefferson wilderness areas, the most scenic stretch of the PCT in Oregon.

But the weather had turned against her. A cool thunderstorm blew in, bringing high winds, little visibility and rain that became a winter mix at high elevations. 

“Records aren’t supposed to be easy,” she said.  

From McKenzie Pass she ran across the slick lava rock in a thin rain jacket that wasn’t nearly warm enough, then across exposed ridgelines.

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“It was wet for 14 hours, but the winds on the high ridges were most dramatic,” said Suchman, who ran with her that day. “There were times when we were almost getting blown over. There were no other people on the trail that day, but we passed a ton of tents that looked really warm and cozy.”

As darkness fell, Halnon and Schuman reached a pit stop at Woodpecker Ridge. 

“I shiver through changing clothes and burrow into a sleeping bag with hot ramen,” she wrote, adding that she fell asleep. “I could stay here forever. Warm and not moving.”

One problem: to keep on pace, she had to complete another 10 miles to Breitenbush Lake.

“I reluctantly stand up and groggily start moving,” she wrote. “The next 10 miles are an unending torture chamber of running. Violent river crossings. Icy snow fields. Rocky trails that are hard to follow and travel. Harsh cold again.”

They stumbled into camp at 4:30 a.m.

Just a few hours later, she had to wake up again.  

“I was totally broken the next morning,” Suchman said. “But she woke up at 7:30 a.m. Honestly, watching her get out on the trail was one of the most incredible accomplishments I’ve ever seen.”

Indeed, Halnon ran another 53 miles from Breitenbush Lake to Barlow Pass near Mount Hood on day seven, finishing at 2 a.m.

It set up a final sprint for the record.  

Sprint to the finish, and huge amount of money for rare cancer research

Halnon posted on Instagram throughout the trip, and gradually saw the amount of money she was raising tick upward, all the way to $14,000.

“What I heard from a lot of people was that in the middle of this darkness, the pandemic and everything else, a lot of people were looking for something positive to follow and be part of,” Halnon said. “The run gave them a way to do it.”

The morning of her final day on the trail, she posted: "I'm going for the overall FKT (fastest known time). Can you help me get there with donations to @bravelikegabe?”

To get the fastest known time overall, she needed to finish the final 57 miles by 3:30 a.m. 

“I thought: ‘I can do this, but this day needs to go well,’” she said.

Normally, Halnon said she doesn’t look at her phone during runs. But this time, she kept checking in because the amount of money raised began to rise quickly. 

“I’d get service, press refresh, and see thousands more dollars coming in,” she said. “And I thought: this is why I’m out here.”

But her shin, which had hurt for days, was throbbing. Luckily, Joe Uhan, a physical therapist from Eugene, was along to help at her next pit stop on the trial. 

“People spring into action when I arrive and I'm on Joe's table, his fingers digging magic into my shin, while Lucy spoon-feeds me ramen,” Halnon wrote. “Ian reads me comments people have left about why they're donating. I am a puddle on Joe's table. Cancer has touched and challenged so many lives. And so many people are inspired by my mom.”

The final stretch

The final push was not easy. 

Hanlon was doing well time-wise, but the Bridge of the Gods at Washington's border felt as far away as Australia as she entered the rocky, uneven terrain of the Columbia Gorge.

“I thought about my mom a lot,” she wrote as darkness fell. “I push as hard as I can, which doesn't amount to much speed or grace at mile 446. But I am emptying myself out for this run.”  

Finally, she saw headlights in the distance. Excited hollers. Then the outline of the bridge.

“I hit the bridge surrounded by a tidal wave of love,” she wrote. “The Washington sign cracks me like an egg. I feel so strong and so raw as I finally stop running after 7 days and 19 hours and 23 minutes.”

Her time is a few hours faster than Brian Donnelly, who set the self-supported record of 7 days, 22 hours and 37 minutes in 2013. The final push raised the total over $30,000, which has increased to $32,000. All the money will be donated to Brave Like Gabe for rare cancer research, Halnon said.

After the run, Halnon spent a lot of time sleeping and eating. And thinking about her mom.

“In some ways, I’m glad that she couldn’t follow the blue dot on the screen because it would have really worried her,” Halnon said. “But she would have been beyond proud. And for me, this was my way of feeling connected to her.”

You can still donate to Helnon and the Brave Like Gabe fund here.

Fastest known times on Oregon Pacific Crest Trail 

Supported, female

Emily Halnon: 7 days, 19 hours, 23 minutes (Aug. 9, 2020) 

Lindsey Ulrich: 9 days, 13 hours, 39 minutes (Aug. 5, 2020)  

Danielle Snyder: 9 days, 15 hours, 8 minutes (Aug. 31, 2019) 

Scott Loughney and Yassine Diboun: 8 days, 12 hours, 5 minutes (July 25, 2016) 

Self-supported, male

Brian Donnelly: 7 days, 22 hours, 37 minutes (Aug. 17, 2013) 

Emily Halnon's record, day by day

Day one: California border to Keno Access Road, 61.5 miles / 8,900 feet of elevation gain

Day two: Keno Access Road to Crater Lake National Park, 70 miles / 9,300 feet

Day three: Crater Lake to Windigo Pass, 58 miles / 6,700 feet

Day four: Windigo Pass to Charlton Lake, 48 miles / 6,400 feet

Day five: Charlton Lake to McKenzie Pass, 57 miles / 6,800 feet

Day six: McKenzie Pass to Brietenbush Lake, 59 miles / 8,800 feet

Day seven: Brietenbush Lake to Barlow Pass, 53 miles / 5,700 feet 

Day eight: Barlow Pass to Bridge of the Gods, 57 miles / 8,500 feet

Total: 463.5 miles* / 61,100 feet of climb 

* Mileage taken from Halnon's GPS. It's slightly longer than official Oregon PCT listed milage of 455, but that's normal for GPS systems.  

(08/29/2020) Views: 376 ⚡AMP
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Man running from California to Delaware raising money for kids with cancer stops in Avon’s Nottingham Park

Peter Halper running over 3,000 miles to raise money for kids with cancer

Peter Halper is a man on a mission.

The Wisconsin resident stopped in Avon’s Nottingham Park on Tuesday as part of Emery’s Thunder Run, a 3,076-mile, four-month trek to raise funds for kids with cancer.

He started planning this run two years ago and was originally scheduled to start his run from California to Delaware in April. However, he postponed it to July to allow more information about COVID-19 to come out. He’s received a few questions along the way about running cross-country during a pandemic.

It’s a good question, and I appreciate the question, but we’re not running despite a pandemic, I’m running because of it, more or less because the parents who are going through Neuroblastoma with their kids, they still got to deal with the same problems. Their issues don’t go away, so it just compounded everything for them, so it’s even more important that we continue on,” Halper said.

Halper and his team of rotating volunteers are coordinating the run to raise money for Emery’s Memory Foundation.

“This run is a crazy stunt to help us find real solutions for the childhood cancer crisis,” the Emery’s Memory Foundation website says. “Funds from this run will go to Neuroblastoma research, support families in treatment and raise awareness about Neuroblastoma.”

Neuroblastoma is a form of cancer that starts in certain types of very primitive nerve cells found in an embryo or fetus, according to http://www.cancer.org.

Emery, the foundation’s namesake, is Halper’s sister’s granddaughter, who died at age 3 of Neuroblastoma Stage 4. Halper had never met his great-niece.

“The first time I met Emery was at her funeral,” Halper said. “When I was sitting in the pews, it hit me like a ton of rocks. How are these parents going to do what they are about to have to do? I decided that day that I was going to offer to run for them, for their foundation.”

Generosity from town to town

Halper’s four-month schedule includes running over a marathon a day for six days a week, taking Sundays off — that’s almost 115 marathons in four months. Upon arriving in Avon, he was a little over 1,000 miles into his run.

He will leave the valley and head east, over Vail Pass. Once in Kansas, he’ll take some time to spend some with family there. Halper has four children and is looking forward to seeing his wife.

“I’m not technically in the exact middle, but Denver, Colorado, feels like the middle and it’s kind of a big transition area to the plains so I feel like I’m in the middle,” he said.

However, he is planning to return either before leaving Denver or once arriving in Delaware — the Grizzly Creek Fire canceled his segment from Glenwood Springs to Gypsum.

“If it doesn’t open soon, I’ll go to Delaware, finish and I’ll buy a plane ticket back to Denver the day I get to Delaware, come back here and finish,” he said, adding he wants the run to be as continuous as possible to send a strong message to the parents and children dealing with Neuroblastoma. “We’re willing to suffer for them. We will finish all of it, even if we have to come back.”

Halper has been running for 11 years and has found a unique ability to run long distances.

“I hated running when I first started,” he said. “I’m not a professional runner. I’m not a sponsored runner. I’m a carpenter by trade. That’s what I do at home.”

Running across the western part of the country so far, Halper has noticed a surprising amount of generosity.

“It’s always been the people with the least offering the most,” he said. “I haven’t gone through a town where people haven’t been really generous and kind. I think that spirit is still really strong.”

He says Native American reservations have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There, you can see it on their faces and the way they carry themselves. Everything’s boarded up that you can tell wasn’t boarded up months ago,” he said.

The Emery’s Thunder Run has a goal of raising $200,000. As of mid-August, it has raised over $109,000. To donate, sponsor a mile or learn more, visit http://www.emorysmemoryfoundation.com.

“I have good days and bad days, like you might expect,” Halper said Tuesday, “but I’m feeling good today.”

(08/22/2020) Views: 287 ⚡AMP
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Six-year-old runs marathon to raise money for teacher's illness

Poppy Maxwell is running a full marathon to raise funds for Cancer Research UK. Poppy Maxwell, a Year 2 student from Yaxley, took on the challenge on July 18 after her favourite teacher was diagnosed with breast cancer. On route to finish the race by August 14th, she has already raised over £2,000 for the life-saving charity.

Poppy, whose mother, Amy, is also a runner, has been pounding the pavements regularly since last summer. The budding athlete had initially planned to run 10km in 10 days, but after much consideration, she settled on a longer project – 42km over the course of her summer holidays.

'I wanted to challenge myself and I knew a marathon would be hard, but I wanted to try and raise lots of money,' Poppy tells Runner’s World UK.

While the experience has been mostly enjoyable so far, it has not been without its obstacles.

'Running when it’s hot is really hard!' Poppy admits. The young runner also finds the long stretches tough, taking walking breaks when needed to cover the distance.

Despite these struggles, Poppy stays focused by varying up her routes and running with the support of her family. 'We run in different places including Holkham beach and on trails,' reveals Amy.

Initially ‘a bit apprehensive’ about Poppy’s marathon, Amy and dad Gary have since been blown away by their daughter’s perseverance. 'We've been impressed with her determination and she never complains (unless it's hot!)' Amy says.

Poppy also knows that to complete the marathon, she needs to follow every runner’s favourite training rule – carb up. 'I like to eat pasta, mashed potato and apple Soreen. I want to be a strong runner,' she says.

With just days to go until she finishes her marathon, Poppy is already thinking of her next running goal. 'I'd like to get a new Junior parkrun PB and when I'm older I'd like to start my own Junior parkrun.'

(08/15/2020) Views: 279 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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CANCER SURVIVOR FULFILLS GOAL OF RUNNING 5K

To his friends and family, Mohawk Valley athlete Jason VenBenschoten of Westmoreland is a walking miracle.

WESTMORELAND, N.Y. - To his friends and family, Mohawk Valley athlete Jason VenBenschoten of Westmoreland is a walking miracle.

Jason suffered a brain hemorrhage due to a cancerous tumor back in 2018. He was in a coma for over a day that doctors thought he wouldn't come out of. When he did, Jason couldn't walk and had trouble with his vision.

Jason registered for this year's Boilermaker Road Race, but because he still struggles with running, Jason couldn't participate in the race virtually without his friends there to make sure he doesn't fall.

So this year he created his own fake (faux) Boilermaker that he called the "Fauxlermaker". Jason said throughout his road to recovery, he couldn't imagine being able to run as he did on Saturday.

"When I woke up from cancer I couldn't walk at all so and the fact that I'm running is a big deal for me," said VenBenschoten.

The 5K (3.1 miles) course began at Jason's house and ended at the 7 Hamlets Brewery in Westmoreland. At the finish line, Jason's friends and family watched as the group of 10 runners crossed the line. A Boilermaker representative was also there to greet him with an honorary 2020 Boilermaker hat and pin.

"It was awfully good of them to come out and give that to me. I never officially ran a race but now I have an official finish," said VenBenschoten.

His wife Bethany VenBenschoten also ran with him and said she couldn't be more proud after all that he's been through.

"Every day, every time he opens his eyes in the morning I'm proud because he went through some of the hardest things anyone would ever have to go through."VenBenschoten.

Jason ended with a time of 37 minutes beating his 45-minute goal. Jason plans on running the Boilermaker next year.

(08/09/2020) Views: 279 ⚡AMP
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At the Los Angeles Games 36 years ago, Canadian Silvia Ruegger finished in eighth in the first-ever women's Olympic marathon

On August 5, 1984, the inaugural women’s Olympic marathon was held in Los Angeles. Fifty runners lined up for the 42.2K run and American Joan Benoit-Samuelson took the win in 2:24:52, grabbing the first Olympic gold in women’s marathon history. Three Canadians raced that day 36 years ago in L.A., including marathon legend and former national record-holder Silvia Ruegger. Ruegger finished in eighth place on the day, running to a 2:29:09 top-10 finish. That was the sole Olympic race of Ruegger’s career, and since then, no Canadian — male or female — has finished in a higher position in the Olympic marathon. 

Women’s marathoning through the years 

Benoit-Samuelson won the race in L.A. in impressive fashion, beating silver medallist Grete Waitz of Norway by more than a minute to take the gold on home soil. Going into the race, Benoit-Samuelson was a two-time Boston Marathon champion, and a year later, she won the Chicago Marathon and set an American record in the process. Her time of 2:21:21 stood as the national marathon record until 2006, when Deena Kastor beat it at the London Marathon. Benoit-Samuelson is still the fourth-fastest woman marathoner in U.S. history. 

The women’s marathon has come a long way since its introduction to the Olympics in 1984. At the time, the world record was 2:24:26, set by Ingrid Kristiansen of Norway (who finished in fourth in L.A.). Today, 36 years later, that record has been lowered by 10 minutes, and it currently sits at 2:14:04 following Brigid Kosgei‘s dominant performance at the 2019 Chicago Marathon.

Canadians at the 1984 Games 

Ruegger qualified for the Olympics at the 1984 Ottawa Marathon, which she won in a Canadian record of 2:30:37. She broke that record just a few months later in L.A., becoming the first Canadian woman to dip below 2:30 in the marathon. Ruegger raced alongside fellow Canadians Jacqueline Gareau (1980 Boston Marathon champion and the previous national record-holder before Ruegger won the Ottawa Marathon) and Anne Marie Malone. Gareau didn’t finish the race in L.A., but Malone recorded an impressive result to follow Ruegger’s, finishing in 17th place with a final time of 2:36:33. 

The following year at the 1985 Houston Marathon, Ruegger beat her record yet again, posting a 2:28:36. This remained the Canadian record for almost 30 years before it was broken in 2013 at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon by both Lanni Marchant and Krista DuChene. A car accident following her record in 1985 left Ruegger to deal with injuries for the rest of her career, and she never returned to her previous record-setting form. Ruegger passed away in August 2019 at the age of 58 after a battle with cancer, but she remains one of the greatest athletes in Canadian history.

(08/06/2020) Views: 368 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Benwood Fire Captain runs 8 miles geared up for a special cause

One fully-geared up firefighter is running 8 miles for a cause that could be life-changing to kids with cancer.

It would have been the 23rd annual Debbie Green Memorial 5k/Walk for Leukemia. But this year one man is running… all by himself.

Garson Taylor is the Captain of the Benwood Fire Department. He would have ran the 5k for the 6th time if it didn’t get canceled due to the epidemic.

The annual 5k then didn’t get to raise around $15,000 to $20,000 for kids with cancer like it usually does every year.

Still Taylor managed to raise $3,200 from his own run. He ran Saturday morning from the center of Benwood towards Marshall Street until he got to Moundsville… all for the kids.

“At first I just did it just to do it, and then I got to meet the families of these kids that are sick, and seeing their smiles. They don’t even know me. I don’t know them, so it’s a really great thing.”

The Debbie Green Memorial 5k/Walk for Leukemia started 23 years ago.

It all dates back to 1972… the year 6-year-old Debbie Green died from Leukemia. Over 40 kids with cancer have been helped since.

If you’d like to donate to the cause, you could stop by Happy Tails Pet Salon.

Taylor says he’s hoping to reach between $4,500 and 5,000 dollars for kids with cancer.

(08/02/2020) Views: 318 ⚡AMP
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Debbie Green 5k

Debbie Green 5k

Proceeds of the event will benefit a local recipient who suffers from leukemia Pediatric Cancer. Start and finish lines located at Wheeling's Heritage Port. Course Records: Male - Maroud Marofit 13:46 (2013) Female - Susan Jerotich 15:39 (2014) Debbie's Story: Debbie Green was a 7 year old girl from Benwood, WV. She was like every other little girl... she loved...

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Run with Rivs takes off in support of beloved runner Tommy Rivers Puzey

The outpouring of support from the Flagstaff running community for one of their own, Tommy Rivers Puzey, continues. 

For the community, which encompasses all levels of running from pro to fitness nuts in town, lifting up one of their own whom so often has helped others is a no-brainer.

"Rivers and his family are one of ours and this is a really hard time for them and a tough diagnosis what he is fighting," Mike Smith, Northern Arizona director for cross country and track and field, said over the phone Friday. "That's a fight that he's got to undertake, but we know in community we can let him and his family know there are lots of folks behind them.

"Sometimes it is the community lifting you up and other times you are called to do the lifting. Right now for the Flagstaff running community, it is time to lift. ... He's one of us and we got to take care of our people."

Smith and Run Flagstaff owner Vince Sherry organized Run with Rivs, a charity event to continue to raise funds for Rivers Puzey's cancer treatment and the medical costs.

Much like NAZ Elite head coach Ben Rosario, Sherry's impression of Rivers Puzey, address by many as Rivers, are nothing but positive. Sherry described the notable runner as someone who just went to everything he could and was quickly ingrained into the Flagstaff running community not long after he first moved to town.

Sherry said he never really had to ask Rivers where he would be, but chances are he would just be there.

Whether at a group run, a bagel run or when Rivers would run to and from Northern Arizona's campus for classes each day, it is usually hard to miss him.

"We were doing Wednesday group runs and the reason that everyone got to know him was because he showed up to absolutely everything," Sherry said. "We had Wednesday group runs and he would be at Wednesday group runs, and then on Thursday he would be at the bagel runs and he would do his own runs. You could look out the window and see the route he would do to get to NAU on the urban trail. ... We would see him with his backpack on and I would be at the counter at the shop and, 'Oh, there goes Tommy,' and then a few hours later, 'There he goes again.'"

NAZ Elite This Week: Tommy Rivers Puzey's ties run deep with squad, Kellyn Taylor

With the type of person Rivers is, it is easy for so many to step up to the plate and help him in his battle with pulmonary NK/T-Cell lymphoma. For Sherry it was an easy decision to make with Smith.

"In part in how it stemmed was that Tommy relates to people in a lot of ways; he's funny and he's got a way about him and is really kind and considerate," Sherry said. "He looks out for other people."

Participants can choose to run, ride, hike, paddle, or walk as many miles and as many times as they want between Saturday, Aug. 1, and Sunday, Aug. 9. Participants are then are asked to donate after signing up and can use the hashtags #RunWithRivs, #RideWithRivs #HikeWithRivs and #TriWithRivs to share their experience. They are also asked to mention @runwithrivs on any posts on social media.

Participants make their own challenge and share their journey. That's what Sherry and Smith wanted, people to have fun with it like Rivers would want.

Sherry said he and others involved with the event will share the photos, videos and other posts that participants share on social media onto the event's Instagram page. Sherry said he hopes the posts connect with Rivers and his family throughout Rivers' battle and his hopeful recovery.

 

(08/01/2020) Views: 351 ⚡AMP
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Elite runner Tommy Rivers Puzey, in life-threatening crisis, transferred to Scottsdale hospital

Flagstaff elite runner Tommy Rivers Puzey, a two-time Rock 'n' Roll Arizona marathon champion, was transferred to a hospital in Scottsdale on Thursday with hopes of helping his recovery from a life-threatening respiratory condition.

Puzey, 35, was hospitalized in Flagstaff for more than three weeks and for a week has been in an induced coma and on a ventilator to assist his breathing.

Jacob Puzey said transferring his younger brother to Shea Medical Center will allow him to receive extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) on a machine that replaces the heart and lungs function.

"Even with the ventilator, he wasn't able to get enough oxygen into his lungs," Jacob said. "They oxygenate the blood (on ECMO) rather than trying to pump it straight into the lungs. There are risks, but it didn't seem like the ventilator was doing enough."

In early June, Puzey had a major medical scare while running in the Grand Canyon with friend Derrick Lytle, unsure if he would survive. "Somehow after 12 hours we made it out as the sun rose," he wrote on a social media post. "Life is a fragile thing. Be grateful for each new day and hold tight all the good things this world has to offer."

Jacob Puzey said his brother has not tested positive for coronavirus and believed the issues in the Grand Canyon were due to dehydration and heat stroke. "He realized it was more in his lungs so it felt like pneumonia," which Tommy had when he was a child, Jacob said. 

Puzey still resisted going to the hospital, in part for financial reasons, until it became clear to him and his wife Stephanie that there was no alternative. The couple has three young daughters. Tommy works as a physical therapist in addition to his running career. 

"They've tested for bacteria, viral, fungul, all sorts of things," including cancer, Jacob said, but a definitive answer has yet to be identified.

Puzey is an internationally known trail runner who obtained a doctorate in physical therapy from Northern Arizona University in 2017. His road racing successes including Rock 'n' Roll Arizona titles in 2016 and 2017 and finishing 16th at the 2017 Boston Marathon in 2:18.20. He also won the Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Marathon in 2018 and 2019. 

At the 2020 Houston Marathon in January, Puzey was on pace for a personal best and to qualify for the U.S. Olympic Trials when tripped in a pothole late in the race, suffering meniscus and hamstring tears.

"He doesn't care what the end result is in terms of who wins the race," said Jacob, also a distance runner and running coach. "The way we were raised is wastefulness is an unpardonable sin. You don't waste your talents and opportunities.

"He knew he was in 2:14/2:15 shape at Houston. He was leading the charge of the pace group and pulling away. He never felt better in his life. The only regret he would have is that was his last shot in this Olympic window. He was knocking on the door of his full potential."

Puzey is widly admired in the running community for his work ethic, personality and intellect. In less than a week, more than 5,000 people donated more than $250,000 to a GoFundMe account on his behalf. 

Even while in the hospital in Flagstaff, Puzey posted several Instagram videos explaining his situation and reflecting on his love for his family and others. 

"It's been inspiring and humbling and at the same time not at all surprising," Jacob said. "It speaks to the incredible humanity that exists in the running community and to the impact he has add on individuals.

(07/24/2020) Views: 410 ⚡AMP
by Jeff Metcalfe
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2020 Philadelphia Marathon Cancelled due to the pandemic

Today at a news conference on COVID-19, Mayor Kenney formally announced that in an effort to slow the spread of coronavirus, all large, public events will not be permitted through the end of February 2021.

For all you runners out there, the announcement means this year’s fall races like the Philadelphia Marathon, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon, and the Broad Street Run, which had already been rescheduled from this Spring to October, will not be able to proceed as planned. (It also means no Mummer’s Parade or Thanksgiving Day parade.)

The Philadelphia Marathon weekend, which was slotted for the weekend of November 20th to 22nd, is cancelled.

“Obviously it’s a sad day when we have to cancel the marathon weekend of events. It’s been gaining momentum the past three years,” Leo Dignam, Executive Director of the AACR Philadelphia Marathon, told us over the phone this afternoon, “Before the pandemic hit we were up 15 percent over last year’s numbers, which were up 10 percent from the year before. We’re sad that this had to happen, but the city is being as careful as possible to make sure we don’t create a situation where the virus spreads. And, obviously an event with 35,000 runners and 60,000 spectators is a place where it could spread.”

To handle the cancellation, the Philadelphia Marathon will allow runners to have their choice of deferring their spot to the 2021, 2022, or 2023 marathon, or a refund, which may be donated to the American Association for Cancer Research.

While the 2020 Philadelphia Marathon series of events is cancelled, the 2020 Broad Street Run is going virtual — with some serious modifications for safety.

“This year the virtual Broad Street will be run over a three-week period, from September 12th to September 28th, since there are so many people involved,” Dignam explained. “All of the runners will get their tech shirt, their medals, running Buffs in lieu of a mask, and hand sanitizer.”

In addition to tech shirts, medals, Buffs, and hand-sanitizer, this year’s crop of virtual Broad Street runners will also get a 20 percent discount on 2021 entry fees, as well as guaranteed entry into the 2021 Blue Cross Broad Street Run, without having to enter the lottery. Which is, all in all, a pretty nice package for participants from the folks at the run, even if we’ll all miss race day this year.

(07/15/2020) Views: 312 ⚡AMP
by Gina Tomaine
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Baxters Loch Ness Marathon cancelled due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic

Organizers of the Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running have today announced the cancellation of the 2020 event due to the challenges posed by the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

Established in 2002, the event attracted a record 9,500 participants in 2019 with 60% of marathon runners coming from outside Scotland and 17% from overseas. The cancellation is the first in the event’s 18-year history. The event raised over GBP 1m (EUR 1.1m) for charity in 2019.

Following consultation with partner agencies, sponsors and stakeholders over the past few months during lockdown, the difficult decision was made based on the safety and welfare of all those involved in the event. The uncertainty over travel restrictions for the large number of participants who travel to Inverness and the Highlands from around the UK and abroad was also taken into account.

All those with a place in the 2020 Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running will automatically be transferred to the 2021 event, scheduled to take place on 3rd October. All participants have been contacted by email today with further information.

Commenting on the decision, Malcolm Sutherland, Event & Race Director of Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running, said: “I would like to extend my thanks to all those signed up for the 2020 event for their patience and support during this uncertain and very challenging time. “It has been a difficult decision and not one we have taken lightly however the health, safety and welfare of our participants, volunteers, staff, charities and stakeholders is at the heart of everything we do and will always remain our priority. We feel it is our responsibility to protect everyone involved including our emergency services and local community which has always been so supportive.

“The Baxters Loch Ness Marathon is a highlight of the UK running calendar with one of the most spectacular marathon routes in the world and has also gained a reputation as one of the most memorable.

We pride ourselves on offering a very special Highland experience and we are concerned this would be lost were we to stage the event with all the necessary physical distancing measures and other restrictions in place. Instead, we will put our efforts into ensuring the 2021 Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running is an outstanding experience for everyone.

“We also understand the many weeks of training required to prepare for this event, that many of you will be starting your 12-week training programme and many are fundraising for charity. We will therefore be working with our partner charities – Macmillan Cancer Support, Alzheimer Scotland, Cancer Research UK and the Highland Hospice and a host of other charities – to maximize fundraising in 2021.

“We really hope those due to take part this year will join us in 2021 – we can’t wait to see you then.”

(06/30/2020) Views: 393 ⚡AMP
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Baxters Loch Ness Marathon

Baxters Loch Ness Marathon

The Loch Ness Marathon is an annual marathon race in Scotland, held along the famous loch, Loch Ness, ending in Inverness. The event is part of the Festival of Running, held annually at the beginning of October. This also includes a 10K race and a 5K fun run, and attracts over 8,000 participants across all of the events. The Baxters...

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The 2020 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon has been cancelled due to the pandemic

The 2020 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon and Half Marathon has been canceled.

The event, previously slated for October, joins several other races and festivals in the Columbus area that have been shelved, rescheduled or replanned to take place virtually because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“No one at the finish line last October could have anticipated that we would cancel the event for this year, but it is absolutely the correct thing to do,” Board Chairman Dan Leite said in a news release. “The safety of our athletes, volunteers, first responders, team and the entire community is the top priority for our event. “

The event has raised $10 million for Nationwide Children’s Hospital, the marathon’s benefiting charity, since 2012. 

“It pains us to not be able to bring our race forward in 2020, but these are no ordinary times,” Race Director Darris Blackford said in the release. “Everyone has faced changes to our ‘normal’ ways of life. When you think about the best health and safety practices needed to help slow the spread of the virus, holding a major running footrace isn’t the responsible thing to do right now.”

Race participants will have their fees refunded. However, would-be participants will still have a chance to fundraise for Children’s Hospital’s patients and families. There will be a forthcoming announcement on fundraising activities.

"This is the right decision and whole this news might disappoint in the short term, our 128-year-old mission is not taking a break,” Steve Testa, president of the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Foundation, said in the release.

“Kids still get cancer, babies are still born prematurely,” Testa said. “We look forward to working with everyone to help children.”

(06/30/2020) Views: 423 ⚡AMP
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Columbus Marathon

Columbus Marathon

The Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Marathon, first run in 1978 and held annually since 1980, features a flat, fast course which saw nearly 20 percent of finishers qualify for the Boston Marathon in 2010. The event has sold-out in mid-August the past eight years. There are 7,000 runners in the full marathon and 11,000 in the half marathon, making it...

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400m runner, Graeme Thompson was given a two-year suspension for anti-doping violation

Graeme Thompson, a member of the Speed River Track and Field Club and former Guelph Gryphon, was given a two-year suspension on Tuesday for presence of clenbuterol, a prohibited anabolic agent, and tamoxifen, a prohibited hormone and metabolic modulator in a July 27, 2019 test.

Thompson’s positive sample would have been given at the 2019 national championships in Montreal, where he finished fourth in the 400m final. He would go on to join Team Canada at the 2019 World Championships as an alternate on the 4 x 400m relay team. He continued to race until in January 2020, but hasn’t recorded any results since.

Thompson was a member of the 2018-2019 Gryphons team that won the U Sports men’s national title. He was ranked third nationally in the 400m at the end of the 2019 season.

Clenbuterol is often used to treat asthma and is found in certain inhalers. Tamoxifen, on the other hand, is most commonly used to treat breast cancer as an estrogen blocker. While anti-estrogens don’t really enhance performance, they’re banned by WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) because the drug can be used to alleviate symptoms of other performance enhancing drugs, like testosterone.

The standard sanction for the presence of the mentioned substances is a four-year ban. However, according to the CCES, based on information provided by the athlete, the violation was deemed unintentional and therefore a two-year sanction was proposed.

Thompson waived his right to a hearing and accepted the sanction, which terminates on October 9, 2021.

(06/03/2020) Views: 327 ⚡AMP
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Austin Marathon Invites Runners from around the world to run Free Global Running Day Virtual 5K

The Ascension Seton Austin Marathon presented by Under Armour invites runners from around the world to register for the free Global Running Day Virtual 5K. This is an excellent opportunity for everyone to come together to celebrate the sport we love and the entire running community.

You can run with anyone from anywhere during the free Global Running Day Virtual 5K! Invite friends, family, neighbors, and your running group to join you. Plus, finishers could win some sweet prizes! Registration is open until Wednesday, June 3rd.

“I’m hyped that the Austin Marathon is offering a virtual 5K to celebrate Global Running Day,” said Will von Rosenberg, who attended last year’s Global Running Day event in Austin. “It was great to see the Austin running community come together at last year’s event. I’m ready to run the Global Running Day Virtual 5K with runners from around the world!”

Participants of the free Global Running Day Virtual 5K can submit their 5K results at any time between May 20th and June 4th. Every participant will receive:

Customizable, downloadable bib that can be printed at home.

Limited-edition 2020 Global Running Day digital finisher medal.

Official digital finisher’s certificate.

Automatic entry into the giveaway to win 1 of 5 grand prizes including entry to the 2021 Ascension Seton Austin Marathon, Half Marathon, or 5K + VIP Experience

“I'm delighted to celebrate Global Running Day with the Austin Marathon. Their 30th anniversary will be the North American leg of my attempt to be the first 6-time cancer survivor to run a marathon on every continent,” said Jonathan Acott, who will participate from London. “After 6 cancers, running is the way I manage both my mental and physical health. It gives me the time I need to manage my emotions but also to celebrate my body and what it's been through and can still do.”

Austin’s flagship running event annually attracts runners from all 50 states and 35+ countries around the world. The start and finish locations are just a few blocks apart.

They are within walking distance of many downtown hotels and restaurants. The finish line is in front of the picturesque Texas State Capitol. The Austin Marathon is the perfect running weekend destination. Registration opens on June 1st.

(05/21/2020) Views: 431 ⚡AMP
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Austin Marathon Weekend

Austin Marathon Weekend

The premier running event in the City of Austin annually attracts runners from all 50 states and 20+ countries around the world. With a downtown finish and within proximity of many downtown hotels and restaurants, the Austin Marathon is the perfect running weekend destination. Come run the roads of The Live Music Capital of the World where there's live music...

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George Gibbs has pledged to run 3km every day for two weeks, the equivalent of a marathon, to raise money for ChildLine Foundation

He is eight-year-old George Gibbs who started fundraising when he was just four, taking part in Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life.

The Linslade Lower pupil who lives in Rosebery Avenue with his motoring journalist dad Nick, PR planning executive mum Frances and little sister Addie, three, has already reached his £500 target and is now thinking of doubling it.

George and Frances set off every morning at 9am, running along the canal between the Globe bridge and Tesco bridge.

And the Year 3 schoolboy has only one complaint about his pace-setting partner: “Sometimes Mum can’t keep up with me. Otherwise she’s fine.”

Dad Nick said: “They run at roughly the same pace . . . I like to think I’m a little faster.”

He added: “George was keen to do something to help a charity during lockdown.

“We looked at various worthwhile causes and he decided on ChildLine.

“Calls have increased by 300 per cent and are from vulnerable youngsters who have no-one else to turn to.

“He wanted to help children who were not safe at home and suffering because of the current situation.”

George says he enjoys running because it makes him stronger, but this particular exercise is purely for fundraising purposes.

He normally does the 2km Junior Parkrun every Sunday held at Parson’s Close Recreation Ground.

His sporting hero isn’t the magnificent Sir Mo, but racing driver Lewis Hamilton.

And all his plans for the future involve the motoring world.

He confesses: “I want to be a car designer or a racing driver or own a car company.”

(05/13/2020) Views: 399 ⚡AMP
by Bev Creagh
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A family of three generations of Greenwich will undertake marathon on balcony

A Greenwich family of three generations say they are "blown away" by the response to their plan to walk a marathon on their balcony.

Ruth, 87, Charles, 58, Deborah, 57, and James Montlake, 31, will be walking a marathon's distance together on their balcony on the cancelled London Marathon date.

The challenge will be in aid of myeloma, a type of blood cancer that Charles was diagnosed with in December last year.

Charles told the PA news agency: "Myeloma UK is a charity which does a lot of good work and when I was first diagnosed in December, like many people, I didn't know anything about myeloma ... they really were there for me and I feel like in what we're doing, we're giving something back."

The family estimates that the challenge on the 11-metre-long balcony will take over 10 hours and around 4,000 lengths to complete.

They began the marathon at 9am on Sunday, and are expecting friends and family to cheer them on from the park below their flat.

Charles told PA: "As we live in Greenwich, we're very close to the marathon ... we always walk up the hill to watch it start and then come back down to cheer people as they pass by.

"We're obviously going to miss the marathon ... so we're going to do it ourselves!"

Aside from Charles's weekly chemotherapy at Guy's Hospital, he and the rest of the family must isolate, with neighbours delivering shopping for them.

Charles told PA: "We've been very lucky (during lockdown) because James is not normally in the UK. It's really nice to have our son with us and that has really helped us a lot.

"Apart from that, we've barely had a moment to get bored, we've all got things to do."

The challenge started with a £260 target to correspond with the marathon's 26-mile distance, but the family now has a target of £10,000 due to funds pouring in.

Charles's mother Ruth, who normally uses a walking frame, said: "I'm really quite excited about it ... this has been a wonderful opportunity to help.

(04/27/2020) Views: 306 ⚡AMP
by Euan O'Byrne Mulligan
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A retired teacher living with cancer has inspired his daughter to run a virtual fundraising event for the charity helping him through his illness

Lizzie Shankland-Fee said the courage of her dad, former Huntington School deputy head Gordon Fee, was driving her on to organise a social-distancing marathon with a group of friends.

Gordon, 80, was a gymnast who marked his 60th birthday by turning six back-flips. He still boasted a six-pack when he turned 75. But after running the 2018 York 10K Gordon felt breathless and tests showed he had the lung cancer mesothelioma.

He underwent surgery, chemotherapy and other gruelling treatments, and was not expected to live beyond a year, but Gordon, his wife Linda and their family are continuing to take each day as it comes, supported by York Against Cancer.

The charity gave them a free short break at its Whitby apartment and Gordon has also taken part in its free exercise sessions. “The holiday was magical,” said Lizzie, 40.

“The apartment is a magnificent penthouse and the views of the beach are phenomenal. “Some days Dad struggled but he could watch us taking the kids down to the beach. When he was well we carried him down there and he had the most amazing day, just watching us burying the kids in the sand! It was perfect. We now live for the rainbow days and memories we can make together.”

But Lizzie, a teacher who lives in Manchester, has not been able to see Gordon and his wife Linda since coronavirus struck. They are self-isolating at home in York.

Lizzie has set up a JustGiving page, where wellwishers can sponsor her and leave messages of support.

She says her dad was very touched when she told him what she was doing. “People have left such lovely messages and for him to be able to read them is really sweet.”

(04/27/2020) Views: 581 ⚡AMP
by Haydn Lewis
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People are still running in Central Park but the thought of it now makes me nervous

(Editor’s note: I asked my friend Larry Allen to give me his overview of the situation back east due to COVID-19. Larry is a lifetime runner and is a cancer survivor. Him and his wife live in New York City and has a weekend house in Connecticut.)

“Hi Bob, Sorry to be so slow to respond. We are in Connecticut at our weekend place. We were without internet for 10 days, our cell service is nil and our phone only functions with working internet. It was a real catch22 to find a way to get a service appointment, certainly because we were untethered digitally but more so because the ISP was overwhelmed and.short staffed. We finally got through on Twitter and now with a new router & modem I think we’re back in the modern world, to the extent we can bear to be.

"My oncologist and my internist essentially booted me out of the city in early March due to my still compromised immune system. I was due to have a CT scan and some other post-chemo exams a month ago, just to be certain all was still ok and that I had no reoccurrence of the cancer. Unfortunately the Doctors won’t let me near a hospital, they explained that the risk to go without followup exams for the near term was less than the risk of showing up at the hospital and possibly being infected with my immune system as it is.

"We are safe here for now. Concerned about the food supply and basic services but there’s not much more to be done than hunkering down and hoping that the trends begin to turn.

"I’ve been able to continue running six days, 25-35 miles a week. I try to go to the rail trail near our home which is usually my peaceful place. The odd hybrid bureaucratic nature of the shared federal/state/local responsibility for the trail has spared it from being closed as is the case for all other state and local parks with less complicated governance. The bad news is this: there are huge numbers of people suffering from “cabin fever” in lovely spring weather after a long winter and too few places for people to get out for some exercise. Naturally the rail trail has gotten too crowded for safety so other than going at dawn or dusk or during a rainstorm it’s not really an option. I guess it’s somewhat of a blessing that there are far fewer cars on the road so hitting the pavement is less treacherous than it might be. One has to assuming e the air quality is better too.

"As you know we live very close to Central Park and it is one of my favorite places to run.  I really enjoyed running with you there last year.  

"People are still running in Central Park. I don’t know how but the very thought of it makes me very nervous now." 

(Photos:  me a couple of weeks back,  enjoying a run with Bob in the park last Feb 2019 and Bob and I at a Speak Easy the night before.  Bob's wife Catherine took the shot.  When life was normal.) 

(04/26/2020) Views: 338 ⚡AMP
by Larry Allen
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Kevin Webber runs his version of Marathon des Sables at home

AFC Wimbledon fan Kevin Webber was diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer five years ago and given only two years to live, he tells Sky Sports News reporter Jeremy Langdon.

That diagnosis changed Kevin's perspective on life and, when it came to making up a bucket list, the Marathon des Sables (MdS) was top.

The brutal Saharan ultra-marathon is notorious. Normally around 250 kilometers long, it means six days of suffering in desert heat with a pack on your back.

Kevin warmed up with two conventional marathons - against medical advice - while undergoing chemotherapy before running the MdS in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.

This year would have been the fifth - and also would have made him the only person to run the event that many times with stage 4 cancer - but coronavirus forced the race in Morocco to be postponed early this month.

So Kevin decided to run it instead in his back garden and round his house in Epsom, Surrey.

He said: "I thought I'm not going to allow cancer to stop me doing things so equally I'm not going to allow coronavirus stopping me doing things either".

Kevin ran the 2019 race distance of 232km - around 140 miles - and fittingly made it a truly home event with the United Kingdom placed in lockdown.

"It would have been very easy for me to have gone out on the road and run a marathon in a day but that wouldn't have proved the point. About the solitude. About getting on when you're on your own. I wanted to prove to people in lockdown that even if you self-isolate you can do things," he added.

It meant an astonishing 2,700 laps round his house with each lap consisting of only 80 meters. It was not the easiest circuit either. Thirty metres through the garden. Ten metres down the side of the house - twice - together with another 20 meters at the front of the house round his two cars.

(04/21/2020) Views: 585 ⚡AMP
by Jeremy Langdon
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Marathon Des Sables

Marathon Des Sables

The Marathon des Sables is ranked by the Discovery Channel as the toughest footrace on earth. Known simply as the MdS, the race is a gruelling multi-stage adventure through a formidable landscape in one of the world’s most inhospitable climates - the Sahara desert. The rules require you to be self-sufficient, to carry with you on your back everything except...

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Pete Collins will be running half marathon on his street during lockdown

A Long Eaton dad plans to run more than 13 miles up and down his street for two charities close to his heart after the London Marathon was postponed.

Pete Collins, 35, of Charlton Avenue, has managed to get the whole neighbourhood involved, raising more than £1,200 in just a matter of days.

He hopes some residents will be cheering on the dad-of-one from their gardens or bedroom windows.

Mr Collins, a sales manager, lost his dad Stephen Collins, 58, to Motor Neurone Disease in 2008 and then his auntie just three years later to the same illness.

He has been raising money for the Motor Neurone Disease Association for more than 10 years and he planned to run the London Marathon in honour of his family on April 26.

But when it was postponed due to the coronavirus lockdown, he started to think of new ways for how he could raise money for the charity.

After a Whatsapp group was formed with around 75 percent of residents from the 45 homes on his street, he discovered some were undergoing cancer treatment.

It was then he decided to set himself the challenge to run 13.1 miles - which is a half marathon - up and down the street for both Motor Neurone Disease Association and Cancer Research.

He said: "I want to cover a minimum of half a marathon, which is about 110 to 115 lengths of the street.

"I had been training for the London Marathon since last August.

"But a week before lock down, the marathon was postponed. It knocked me, because I had been training and raised money.

"I did not know what to do but I kept running.

"Since the lock down, we have a street Whatsapp and it was being used for a range of things - 'I am going to the shops, does anyone need something?' or my 'kids are doing this craft exercise' - it was about sharing ideas.

"I thought I could do something here and engage with the street as well."

He pitched the idea to his wife first and then "put it to the street" who got behind the idea immediately.

He is now carrying out the challenge on Saturday, April 11 from around 9am.

(04/07/2020) Views: 462 ⚡AMP
by Matt Jarram
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin 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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Boston Marathon dream becomes reality for cancer survivor

When Amber Bell was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2016, she thought her days of running marathons might be over. But this mom of three refused to accept that and has persevered, continuing to run while undergoing nearly four years of cancer treatment. This spring, Amber will be among the thousands of people running the Boston Marathon while raising money for charity.

Amber began running in college as a way to relieve stress and to feel good mentally and physically. Her running evolved into a love for training and racing. During a charity run benefiting cancer research in the summer of 2016, Amber realized something wasn’t right with her body.

“I just didn’t feel well the entire time I was running. I knew something was wrong, and I attribute that to being so active and physically aware of what was happening,” Amber says.

Devastated to learn she had stage 4 colon cancer, Amber worried about what that meant for her future and for her family. She also worried that cancer might take away her ability to run. After talking with her oncologist at Willamette Valley Cancer Institute, they mutually decided that she could still run if she felt up to it.

“He said whatever my body has the ability to do—do it, that it’s only going to help me, not harm me.” After a long recovering from surgery, she went on her first post-diagnosis run, which was a day she will never forget.

“I remember just sobbing and thinking, ‘I’m back to me. I have my body back. I can still do this, and it hadn’t been taken from me.”

Like many marathon runners, Amber dreamed of running the Boston Marathon. Qualifying for the race is difficult for runners at peak performance—for Amber, it now seemed impossible. Then she heard about another opportunity to participate in the race. Amber teamed up with Boston Medical Center, one of the Boston Marathon’s 43 official charity teams raising money for nonprofits, and began training to run the renowned 26.2-mile marathon on April 20.

The Boston Athletic Association’s Boston Marathon Official Charity Program was established in 1989 and provides entries to nonprofit organizations. The organizations then recruit runners, who fundraise and, in exchange, receive a marathon entry. In 2019, the Boston Marathon broke a record, bringing in $38.7 million for nonprofit organizations.

Amber has raised about $9,000 for her charity team. She’s also working hard to prepare for the race, but it’s not without its challenges. Every other week, she receives chemotherapy to treat her cancer.

“I don’t feel well for several days following treatment, which prevents me from running,” Amber says. “So, it’s kind of like a week on and a week off, and I’ve just had to deal with that. It’s frustrating because it feels like I’m taking two steps forward and one step back. But I have to focus on the fact that I’m still taking steps forward.”

(02/13/2020) Views: 514 ⚡AMP
by Kelly Warner
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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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It is tough but I just keep going as I battle colon cancer head on

A little past 7 on Christmas Eve morning, about 15 minutes before sunrise, I headed out for my Tuesday morning four mile run through Central Park. I’ve done the same thing, at the same time on 19 Tuesdays since late spring. It wasn’t easy this time.

Lately it has gotten a lot harder. The hills in the park seem to have gotten a fair bit bigger. In spite of having run six days a week since Memorial Day my fitness hasn’t improved in a typical way.

I start my run at home and finish near a diner at Columbus Circle. Kristen leaves the apartment a little after I do and takes a duffel of dry clothes on the subway to meet me. We’ve gotten the timing down so we arrive at about the same time.

I towel off and change clothes in the restroom of the diner. A quick coffee and a bagel and off to Mt Sinai for my weekly chemo treatment.I haven’t really kept it a secret that I was diagnosed with colon cancer in March. A fair number of friends know.

I have made a point of not talking about it much; choosing not to allow myself to become a victim of the diagnosis or to have “C” as a new middle initial or for any of it to become an unintended and unwanted new identity so....a lot of folks might not know.

I seek no pity, no attention nor to raise money to cure anything. You should know I share all of this only in an attempt to get it out of my head and move on.

At the same time, if this encourages anyone to stay active in spite of a health condition or more importantly to listen to your body and when something feels off, see a Dr, get a colonoscopy as I did, good.

Tuesday wasn’t meant to be my last run to a chemo appointment but it will be. The side effects have gotten increasingly more difficult and unmanageable. My Dr. said that I had already realized the benefits of the treatment and continuing would be more harmful than helpful.

He gave me the best Christmas gift ever by agreeing it’s time to stop. I’ve managed to cover about 800 miles since I recovered enough from surgery to begin running in late May.

My Dr. supported my attempt to try and run through my treatments. He seemed to intuitively know that after 50 years as a runner that it would be good for me both mentally and physically.

I’m not sure he initially thought I could keep it up. In time I think he began to think I might. I never doubted It. The nurses in the infusion suites were endlessly supportive and maybe even amused (or maybe bemused) by what I was trying to do.

All of my runs each week fell into a nice predictable pattern. Tuesday’s morning run to the hospital was always filled with intent; to be of good cheer about where I was headed and why. I always intended to minimize dread by running to the treatment, to take it head on.

Wednesday was a day off from running because I had no choice. I’d wait until late day to get out on Thursday to give myself as many hours as I could post-chemo. It usually worked.

I’d be a little gauzed over from the lingering effects but a gentle run in the woods seemed to wash it away. Friday, Saturday, Sunday & Monday were life as usual, as much as possible, with a daily run of 4-7 miles, mostly in the Connecticut woods.

It was all combined with slowly building anxiety as the days crept toward the next Tuesday. And so it went through the summer heat & humidity, the crisp lovely days of fall and the darkening cold days of early winter.

My Dr. said that the effects of the chemo would be cumulative and therefore more difficult as time went on. It was steadily getting harder over the months but with a certain amount of guile it was manageable, at least until early December.

Over the last few weeks there were new side effects weekly; amplified and lingering. I kept my routine, running every day but one each week.

My Tuesday run through the park had the intent I always meant it to have but coming as my 6th run in a row and over the hills of the park, it began feeling as difficult as the last 4 miles of a marathon.

Christmas week the side effects reached a point where quality of life was being impacted; sleep, eating, GI distress, weight loss and profound fatigue. It was hard to imagine continuing the treatment until early February.

My Christmas Eve morn run to the diner was a real beast. I struggled but made it. Big body chills, afterward a real doubt that I could get through the day without being hospitalized if I had my scheduled treatment.

I couldn’t eat after changing into my dry clothes. I wasn’t able to get warm no matter what I did. I felt crummy to say the least.

As Kristen and I talked about what to do, we both recalled a meeting with my Dr. back in June in which he said in my case chemo was optional but that research said a good outcome was slightly more likely if I did it. It made sense to take advantage of every opportunity presented to us and we quickly agreed to the 6 months of chemo.

I knew, we knew, that I’d reached a point where I needed to ask my Dr. what I could or should do. When I saw him mid morning he told us there was no statistical difference in the effectiveness of my particular treatment lasting 3 months vs. 6 months.

I’d made it 4.5 and he agreed that I had reached a place where stopping made sense. He shared with us that he had seen my decline and nearly recommended stopping a week prior but decided to wait and see if I bounced back.

I clearly hadn’t....and just like that I was done. What’s next? Beyond Christmas morning with my still sleeping family, it’ll be the beginning of a few weeks of getting the residual drugs metabolized out of my body and my blood counts rebuilt to normal levels.

I will have a lot of follow up blood tests and CT scans in the months and years ahead. I’m a really lucky one in that I caught this early, it hadn’t spread into my lymph nodes or anywhere else. The expectation is that I will be ok.

I’ll continue running six days a week. I might even run through the park to the diner on Tuesday mornings. I’m not sure my dear night owl of a partner would be quite so enthusiastic about continuing to leave at 7am with a bag of dry clothes. Maybe I can get her to keep doing it if I try to go at a more civilized hour...

Updated Feb 12 - I have continued running 6 days a week since Christmas. I’m still rebuilding my strength from the damage done to my blood from 4.5 months of chemo.  

It’s slow but I’m gaining some strength. I managed my first 30 mile week recently and have gotten pace back down into the 8s per mile and my long run to 8 miles a couple of times.

In March I’ll go in for my first round of post chemo tests and my first colonoscopy (which will be necessary annually from here on). As a runner my body has done a very good job of keeping me informed of where I am and where I’ve been through all of this.

It was intolerance to normal running that led me to be a persistent pest with my Drs and led to the early (and luckily timely) diagnosis, running through the chemo kept me in touch with what was happening to my blood count.

I had blood tests every week prior to treatments and I was often able to tell my Dr what I felt like the blood test would show just from how different or difficult the running had been in the week prior.

Accordingly I’m pretty optimistic about what the tests in March will show, just as a result of how I’ve felt putting in a few more miles and even doing so a little more quickly...

Photos were taken Feb 2019 during a run in Central Park with MBR editor Bob Anderson.  

(02/12/2020) Views: 1,149 ⚡AMP
by Larry Allen
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Jackie and Melissa Williams will honor their late mother by running the Boston Marathon April 20

The running duo, along with their father, Mike Williams, held a fundraiser Saturday night at the Holyoke Lodge of Elks.

The sisters also set up a donation page in the hope of collecting $15,000 for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where their mother, Sue, underwent treatment in 2015.

Jackie Williams, who lives in East Boston, will run her fifth Boston Marathon this year. She sat out last year’s race after enduring a windy and rainy trek in 2018. “It was a monsoon the whole time,” she said.

Training with her sister has made the grueling runs more bearable, logging dozens of miles weekly over Boston’s streets.

The Williams sisters, along with runners from Dana-Farber, are coached by Jack Fultz, who won Boston in 1976. “I feel better with where I’m at then in past years,” she said. “I feel good about it.”

The Dana-Farber team requires runners to raise a minimum of $7,500 apiece. The proceeds will benefit the Claudia Adams Barr Program, which supports cancer research at the institute. Sue Williams underwent treatments at Dana-Farber, including an experimental course.

So far, the sisters raised $4,000 in donations, with the goal of exceeding the $15,000 minimum. “When you’re not thinking about running, you’re thinking about the numbers to the fundraising,” Jackie Williams said. “I’ve been lucky in the past years and raised about $50,000 in total.”

The Holyoke fundraiser brings together family, friends and former Holyoke High classmates. “It’s a nice time to get all the people who loved her together and celebrate her life,” she said. “I feel like this fundraiser is the fun part of the season.”

Jackie William 32, recalled a photo taken of her and her mother at mile-24 in the 2015 marathon.

“The first year I ran, my mom was a patient at Dana-Farber undergoing a clinical trial. She passed away the summer after that,” she said. “It was my first marathon, and I had never run that far in my life. I hugged her, and I just started sobbing.”

The site of her mother inspired her to cover the final two-miles.

In high school and college, Jackie Williams was a cheerleader. “It took my parents by surprise that I was doing this,” she said. “They thought I was a little bit crazy. I called her after all my long runs.”

Though she ran track and cross-country in high school, the Boston Marathon is a first for Melissa Williams. “It’s going a lot better than I expected. It helps to be on a good team. A lot of people from Dana-Farber get together,” she said.

Melissa Williams takes tips from her sister about pacing, how to run hills, and to enjoy the experience. “I’m such an optimist that in my head everything is going good,” she said. “I’m a positive thinker. It’s going according to plan.”

(02/11/2020) Views: 488 ⚡AMP
by Dennis Hohenberger
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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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Sue Nicholls, 74, is set to run her ninth London Marathon

A Burnham-On-Sea pensioner is set to run her ninth London Marathon this Spring – her 21st worldwide marathon in total – as she proves that age is no barrier to running.

Sue Nicholls, 74, is in training for the London Marathon on April 26th in aid of Cancer Research UK.

“I will be running the Paris Marathon on April 5th followed by London three weeks later, which will be my ninth in London and 21st overall! I have also entered the Toronto Marathon next October.”

“Cancer Research UK is a great cause that is very close to my heart,” she told Burnham-On-Sea.com.

We reported in 2011 how Sue began running for the charity in memory of her late husband.

Since then, she has gone on to raise around £25,000 for the charity – an incredible sum.

She says: “Age is no barrier – I love running. It keeps your body and mind active.”

Last year, she completed the London Marathon in a time of 4 hours, 3 minutes and 52 seconds, winning the event’s 70+ age category for a second time!

Sue also completed the Great Wall Of China Marathon in 2018, and traveled to the Arctic Circle in 2019 to complete the Midnight Sun Marathon on the longest day of the year.

In 2017, we reported here that she had been awarded a special medal in recognition of completing worldwide marathons in London, Boston, Tokyo, New York, Chicago and Berlin.

(02/10/2020) Views: 528 ⚡AMP
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin 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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