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Singapore Marathon Launches Improved Route Aimed At Improving Athlete Experience and all the participants

Today, organisers of the 2019 Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon (SCSM) unveiled Singapore’s first evening race routes. The improved routes are built on runner feedback and are intended to deliver a balance of race difficulty set against Singapore’s iconic skyline. The three-day event from 29 November - 1 December will feature a Kids Dash on Friday evening, Marathon and Half Marathon on Saturday evening and conclude with 5km and 10km categories on Sunday morning.

In creation of the route, race organisers consulted with crowd management experts from the Manchester Metropolitan University to design and coordinate the best possible race route experience, employing their experience from working with Abbott World Marathon Major races – a series of the best Marathon races in the world.

Building on the strong positive reception from runners in 2018, organisers have made key strategic improvements while keeping the main core elements of the previously acclaimed course. The first alteration will see runners turning right on Bras Basah Rd, a longer and wider straight along Nicoll Highway, before passing by the War Memorial Park. At the 22-kilometre mark, runners will flank the scenic Marina Grove as they take in the stunning waterfront sunset.

With the event moving to the evening hours, lighting on the Marathon route will be increased providing athletes with optimal visibility while being surrounded by the shimmering Singapore skyline. Volunteer participation will also be doubled from 2018, ensuring a smooth dispensation of sports drink 100plus, water, and other products. Moreover, for the first time in the event’s 18-year history, runners from all categories will begin their race from the same start point across three different days - in front of the Formula 1 (F1) Pit Building.

"This year’s race will be the best yet - the changes we are making are the first for any race in Singapore and the region. A lot of planning and effort has gone into this year’s race to make this an event that is for everyone - participants, family, friends, and the public," said Geoff Meyer, Managing Director for The IRONMAN Group in Asia. "With the all-new spectator zones, we sincerely hope that everyone will come and join us in the festivities as we continue our ascent towards meeting the Abbott World Marathon Majors standards."

This year’s routes aim to provide a memorable experience for runners while ensuring minimal inconvenience to the wider public. Communities affected by road closures have been engaged early and wayfinding signs will be put up in advance to inform the public of impending road closures so that they can make plans to use alternative travel routes. Routes to emergency and essential services such as hospitals shall remain directly accessible throughout the duration of the event. The public is expected to experience some inconvenience in their commute to and from the area. Those travelling to these affected areas are strongly advised to use public transport.

Sport Singapore Chief Executive Officer Lim Teck Yin said, "Organising Singapore’s first Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon in the evening requires all stakeholders to work together to ensure a world-class event that lives up to the aspiration to be part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors."

"Every year, the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon is brought to life by people and their spirit. As the event seeks to make its mark on the global stage, I encourage everyone - from the runners, to the families and everyone that we will pass along the route, to join hands and make history together," Lim added.

(08/03/2019) ⚡AMP
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STANDARD CHARTERED MARATHON SINGAPORE

STANDARD CHARTERED MARATHON SINGAPORE

The Singapore Marathon is an annual international marathon race which is held in December in the city of Singapore. It is an IAAF Gold Label Road Race. It has grown significantly since its inaugural race in 1982 – the 2013 event attracted a total of 60,000 entrants for all categories. There are four separate categories of competition: the full marathon,...

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How ultra running is helping extreme athletes and others in Colorado battle addiction

On an afternoon 25 years ago, Catra Corbett figured her life was over. 

She looked in a mirror and saw purple dashes under her bulging, red eyes, a face painted white, black lipstick and a sad, tired expression that wondered when her next hit was coming. She looked like an extra in “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” She was a go-go dancer who sold drugs and danced all night in clubs. She’d been up three days. 

“This sucks,” she thought to herself, but she saw no way to change it. 

But it did change, after the cops broke down her door and arrested her. A judge, knowing this was her first offense, made her a deal: If she gave up drugs, he would give her a clean slate. If she didn’t, she would go to jail. 

One night in jail scared her enough to give up drugs. She returned to her hometown of Fremont, Calif., away from the club and her friends, and moved in with her mom. She was depressed. She was bored. She wondered if she would stay off drugs. And then she entered a 10K. 

Now she is one of the most successful ultrarunners of all time, a woman who completed more than 250 races and ran 100 miles more than 125 times. She is also the most extreme and famous example of the turnaround that extreme sports see in an unusual percentage of its participants. 

She is the most visible example, with pink hair, bright, colorful clothes and tattoos all over her body, but there are many others. Corbett once said she believed that 50 percent of all ultrarunners are addicts.

That figure is likely too high, especially with the boom in ultrarunning and the waves of extraordinary athletes and tough-as-nails competitors dominating the sport now, but there are many examples that suggest it is not only a piece of its history, it is still a part of the sport, a part that ultrarunning or other extreme sports don’t care to hide. 

Timothy Olson, a recovering addict, won the Western States 100, perhaps the most prestigious ultra, in 2012 and 2013 and once held the course record. Charlie Engle, one of the sports best-known extremists, was a crack addict.

Other extreme endurance sports have attracted addicts as well, such as Lionel Sanders, who signed up for the Ironman triathlon in 2010 to help him beat his addiction to drugs and became a star, finishing second in the Ironman World Championships in 2017. Corbett was clean when she began running, but she said it helped her stay that way. 

“It was mostly the running,” she said in an interview. “It gave me a purpose kept me focused.”  

Experts saw the potential link between exercise and fighting addiction and are now using it to help addicts battle their cravings, even if they aren’t running 100 miles to do it. Even a 10-minute walk, one expert said, can stifle the need for a fix. 

Experts have long searched for solutions to the problem of helping people stay sober when little else seems to work. But more are finding that the solution isn’t frog’s breath or a strange hobby or therapy dog. It’s just a matter of moving. 

“It’s not a magic bullet,” said Alex Murphy, behavioral health consultant with North Range Behavioral Health in Greeley who has treated drug addiction. “But there’s a lot of good things that come from it.”

Those good things include dopamine, along with serotonin, which triggers happiness, and norepinephrine, which helps with energy. Those neurotransmitters are released in generous quantities when you work out, especially when you do it outside. 

Many drugs trigger the release of dopamine — even a brisk, 10-minute walk can release a bit and help an addict fight cravings.

“Dopamine drives both motivation and pleasure,” Murphy said. “The more we can find healthy releases of that, the better. It won’t provide the same levels that the drug will, but it can give you a higher baseline and squash some of the cravings.”

Corbett said the natural high — many call it the “runner’s high,” even though many longtime runners say it’s a gross exaggeration — was a key to keeping herself off drugs. 

(07/15/2019) ⚡AMP
by Dan England
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Gerda Steyn is focused to take the title at the 94th Comrades Marathon Sunday

After narrowly missing the record in last month’s Two Oceans Marathon, Steyn has enjoyed a trouble-free training camp in the mountains of France, together with third place finisher from last year, Steve Way, and Anthony Clark, both running this year’s race in the colours of Nedbank Running Club.

“A lot of people asked me if I am disappointed at just missing the record in Two Oceans,” laughed Steyn.

“Looking back at it now it was a little bit sad to be so close but even with 8km to go, I told myself to save the legs because Comrades is my main focus of the year and I didn’t want to do too much damage.” It’s a decision that Steyn hopes will pay dividends in this year’s event.

Last year’s winner Ann Ashworth comes into this race much faster than before, but it is the Up-run defending champion, Nedbank Running Club’s Camille Herron, who is hoping to defend her title.

A strong athlete with multiple world records, Herron is well known for her awkward running style that took her to victory in 2017.

Teaming up with her club mate Steyn, the two make a dangerous combination.

Throw in stalwart Fikile Mbuthuma and OMTOM gold medalist Ntombesintu Mfunzi who will be one to watch on her Comrades debut, the ‘Green Dream Team’ ladies will be a force on the route.

Adding to Nedbank’s Comrades debuts this year is Poland's Dominika Stelmach who had an unfortunate injury that forced her out of starting last year’s race.

After her fourth-place finish at this year’s Two Oceans, Stelmach is hungry to make an impression.

Also making a debut will be four-time World Ironman champion Chrissie Wellington. The 42-year-old English athlete ran 2 hours 51 minutes in this year’s London Marathon to qualify for Comrades which puts her in with a chance of a top 10 finish.

Carla Molinaro who represented Great Britain last year in the World 100km championships, but now has South African citizenship, will be another athlete looking for a top 10 finish after finishing ninth last year.

South African Deanne Horn is a newcomer in the ultra-marathon scene. She finished 42nd in her debut in 2017 and finished 15th last year and has represented South Africa in the World 100km championships. Together with team-mates Steyn, Mfunzi, Molinaro and Mbuthuma, the Nedbank ladies will be looking to take the team prize in this year’s race.

(06/04/2019) ⚡AMP
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Comrades Marathon

Comrades Marathon

Arguably the greatest ultra marathon in the world where athletes come from all over the world to combine muscle and mental strength to conquer the approx 90kilometers between the cities of Pietermaritzburg and Durban, the event owes its beginnings to the vision of one man, World War I veteran Vic Clapham. A soldier, a dreamer, who had campaigned in East...

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Did you know? Bone Broth Soup is packed with muscle boosting minerals and sodium for post-race recovery

There were stories about coconut oil and butter making a comeback. Now it’s soup. Long touted as a tool to help fight illness and inflammation, bone broth—a basic soup made with animal bones, among other ingredients—is trending among the smoothie-drinking, health-conscious crowd as a restorative miracle potion. But endurance athletes have been sipping stock for centuries. 

“Homemade bone broth is an excellent source of minerals, like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and potassium, in forms that your body can easily absorb. It’s also rich in amino acids, collagen and anti-inflammatory compounds, like chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine,” says sports nutritionist Melissa Hartwig. 

“These nutrients improve digestion, aid in muscle repair and growth, reduce joint pain, promote a balanced nervous system, and strengthen the immune system.”

Granted, some nutritionists argue that many of the health claims surrounding bone broth aren’t backed by research, such as stock having anti-inflammatory properties or helping with GI issues; however, one undeniable benefit is the presence of extra minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, which are important for bone health and muscle function, and are not naturally bountiful in the dairy-free Paleo diet, says Leslie Bonci, director of sports nutrition at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Center for Sports Medicine.

Another nutritional bonus is its high sodium content—good for athletes training for or participating in a long-distance race. 

“There’s a reason broth is served at aid stations during the run portion of an Ironman triathlon,” says sports dietitian Lauren Antonucci. “Toward the end of a race, you’ve lost a lot of salt from sweat and need to replace it in order to prevent muscle cramping and dizziness, but keeping up with your sodium intake is hard, especially because you’re sick of consuming so many sweet, sugary things, like gels and sports drinks. Sipping some broth at that point could play a role in maintaining your fluid balance,” Antonucci says, because sodium helps the body retain fluid. 

One study found that athletes prefer savory over sweet tasting foods later on in an ultra-endurance running event, making broth a no-brainer choice for tired competitors. It doesn’t matter if it’s warm or cold, organic, veggie, chicken or beef—so long as it contains plenty of sodium, it will help you, Antonucci says.

Just remember that a little goes a long way: One four-ounce serving provides at least 200mg of sodium, on average, which is more than three times the amount in a packet of regular Gu. “Consuming just a sip or so at a time [every hour or so] is sufficient,” says Antonucci. “If you know you’re a salty sweater, you could take in a bit more, but in general, broth is something that you won’t need unless you’re going to be active for multiple hours at a time.” 

And don’t forget to accompany it with additional fluids, foods, and electrolyte replacements, like sports drinks, water and gels, chews, or bars when you’re racing, says Bonci. “If broth was your only source of fuel during a prolonged activity, you wouldn’t be consuming adequate amounts of carbs or calories.” 

Endurance athletes looking for broth’s sodium kick can buy boxed veggie, chicken, and beef stock at any grocery store, though some broth pundits would argue that the boxed stuff doesn’t impart the same health benefits as homemade stock. You can order homemade bone broth online or make your own with Hartwig’s easy recipe: system.”

The Ultimate Bone Broth Recipe for Athletes Ingredients: 4 quarts water, 1 teaspoon salt, 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, 2 large onions, unpeeled and coarsely chopped, 2 carrots, scrubbed and coarsely chopped, 3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped, 1 bunch fresh parsley, 2-3 garlic cloves, lightly smashed, 2-4 lbs. meat or poultry bones

Place all ingredients in a large pot on medium-high heat, or in a large slow cooker set on high. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 12 to 24 hours. Strain the stock through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl and discard the waste. Let it cool, and then place the bowl (uncovered) in the fridge for several hours, until the fat rises to the top and hardens. Scrape off the fat with a spoon, reheat your broth and serve. (You can also add leeks, pepper, red pepper flakes, rosemary, thyme, sage and/or ginger.)

 

(03/18/2019) ⚡AMP
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Will The Singapore Marathon Be The Next Abbottt World Marathon Majors?

Singapore, no matter how you put it, no matter when you run—day or night, January or July—is hot and humid. And that is of course not ideal to aim for a marathon PB or break a world record, right?

Maybe so, but the island city-state may soon become an Abbott World Marathon Majors (AbbottWMM) course alongside Boston, Chicago, New York, Tokyo, Berlin and London. In coordination with the Chinese private conglomerate Wanda Group last year, the AbbottWMM agreed to a 10-year strategic partnership to potentially develop three new events to add to the series. As part of this agreement, they were tasked with identifying current races that met the requirements of potential inclusion in the series.

“The World Marathon Majors is a very European and U.S.-centric organization. In order to expand and truly create the global series that they want, they need to expand in areas where they do not yet have a presence, such as Asia,” said Ironman Managing Director for Asia Geoff Meyer.

So why the Singapore Marathon? For starters, it’s one of the most well-organized urban destinations and is extremely clean and safe. The international hub is also easy to reach from anywhere in the world (albeit a long flight from the U.S. and Europe) and has a great public transportation system so travelers can effortlessly navigate its neighborhoods.

“What the World Marathon Majors wants is a truly global city, with all the amenities: hotels, an international airport and all the other modern city infrastructures,” says Meyer.

There is still much to be considered before dubbing Singapore the next AbbottWMM city in 2020. “Singapore is a great international destination with a passion for sports and it has seen a huge increase in the popularity of running over the last few years,” says Tim Hadzima, Executive Director for the AbbottWMM. “But there are still areas that need to be improved for the Singapore Marathon to reach our requirements.”

Aside from the expected long-term procedure, as well as the strict set of criteria to be met for any new marathon, what really seems to be the main issue right now is the lack of local government support. 

“Singapore works very much on this ideology: Singapore for Singaporeans. All of New York City, or London for that matter, basically shuts down for the marathon. There are pros and cons for the local people on a race day like this,” says Meyer. “But Singapore works on a different level. Every single complaint, or inconvenience to a Singaporean resident, is taken very seriously.”

“We’re not going to be a Berlin or London that is basically about world records—and I don’t think we want to be—it’s too hot, too humid from that perspective,” Meyer continues. “We’ve increased the prize money from $160K up to nearly $500K this year. So we’re serious about bringing the world’s best.”

Only time will tell if we’ll soon be adding Singapore to our list of majors to compete at, but with so much in the air currently, we’re not holding our breath for a decision just yet. Would you race in Singapore in December with temperatures around 85-90 degrees F and 100 percent humidity to get a seventh AbbottWMM medal?

(02/03/2019) ⚡AMP
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Sarah Reinertsen has been the only amputee to have completed the World Marathon Challenge

For a long time, people with disabilities were defined by what they couldn't do -- Sarah Reinertsen is choosing to be defined by what she can do as an amputee.

She's not just breaking down barriers, she's blazing a trail for all who come after her.

"Growing up, I knew I was different, right, and I was OK with being different but I was not OK with being told I couldn't do something," Reinertsen said.

"I was born with a tissue disease that meant that my thigh bone stopped growing, so although I had two legs, my left leg was extremely shorter than my right leg."

Reinertsen and her family decided to amputate her leg when she was just seven years old. "That was a really hard time for me," she said.

From age 7 to 11, Reinertsen struggled to make peace with her new reality.  "I was the only kid in my entire school that had a physical disability that you could see," she said.

"I had coaches that wouldn't let me play with the other kids on the main field. They would make me go kick a soccer ball on the side of the wall by myself and so for many years of my childhood I used to believe that narrative. I used to believe that I wasn't good enough."

That all changed when she went to one of her dad's 10k races -- like she did most weekends. But this race changed her life.

"There was a woman in the race who was an amputee and she was doing the 10k and I just thought, I had never seen another amputee on one of these road races with my dad and so I just thought 'wow, if she can run in this six mile race, maybe I could run and do a six mile race,'" Reinertsen said.

She's been running ever since. She learned the ins and outs of prosthetics and backed by Nike and Ossur Prosthetics, Reinertsen ran one race after another. But that was just the beginning.

"I knew this guy named Jim McClaren who had done an Iron Man on a prosthetic leg and I was like 'Jim that's so cool that you did an Ironman, I want to do an Iron Man just like you' and he said 'well I don't know of a girl on a prosthetic that can do it' and I was just like 'are you kidding, you do know a girl because you're looking at her, I'm going to do the Iron Man,'" Reinertsen said.

She not only did the Iron Man, she qualified for the world championship in Kona, Hawaii. She was one of only 10 in the physically challenged division and the only woman.

"I just believed that I could do it," she said. That belief has knocked down barriers all over the world.

She's also the only amputee to have completed the World Marathon Challenge.  That is running seven marathons on seven continents in seven days.

"It's sort of like a long race with sort of like naps in between," she said.

When she's not taking the athletic world by storm herself, Reinertsen is working with Nike's Innovation Kitchen, designing sportswear that gives independence to anyone who wants it, regardless of the physical challenges they may face.

(12/20/2018) ⚡AMP
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Keri Mandell, is planning to run seven marathons on all seven continents in seven days

She’s really gearing up to run 183.4 miles in a week, including in Australia, Africa and Antarctica. Something only 103 people have ever done.

For comparison, 536 people have been to outer space. And yet the only thing that scares her about any of this is the airplane. “I don’t really like to fly,” she said. But while that might be true, this 36-year-old yogi, CrossFit coach, marathoner, Ironman triathlete and businesswoman is not really the type to not do what she sets her mind to.

To that end, Mandell is in the process of raising funds so she can participate in the 2020 World Marathon Challenge—a grueling contest.  When the specifics aren’t yet known for the 2020 event, locations for the 2019 challenge are: Novo, Antarctica; Cape Town, South Africa; Perth, Australia; Dubai in the UAE; Madrid, Spain; Santiago, Chile; and ending in Miami.

Self described as “wicked competitive” when she wants something and “so Type-A” all the other times, Mandell is no stranger to pushing past limits she used to have.

(12/12/2018) ⚡AMP
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New ownership has been announced for the Carlsbad 5000 being held April 7th

San Diego-based Groundwork Endurance, LLC announced this week that it has acquired the iconic Carlsbad 5000 road race from IRONMAN, a Wanda Sports Holdings company. Under the leadership of local runners, including U.S Olympian Meb Keflezighi, Groundwork Endurance will welcome participants from around the world to Carlsbad, California April 6- 7, 2019 for the 34th annual Carlsbad 5000.

“I am delighted to join the local ownership team in building upon the legacy of the Carlsbad 5000. There is no better place than the San Diego coast to celebrate the sport that has meant so much to me,” said Meb, the only runner in history to win the NYC Marathon, Boston Marathon and an Olympic Marathon medal.

“I raced the Carlsbad 5000 twice during my professional career and both experiences were unforgettable. Having the opportunity to now help shape the direction of this amazing event for future generations is truly an honor. My wife and I are excited to watch as our three daughters run in their first Junior Carlsbad and we can’t wait to get more kids throughout the area to join in on the fun.” Known as the “World’s Fastest 5k”, the annual road race attracts amateur, competitive, and professional runners from around the world.

Since the inaugural edition in 1986, the Carlsbad 5000 has seen 16 World records and eight U.S. records, as well as numerous national and age group marks. The event is the home of the current female and male World 5K road records: 14:46, Meseret Defar (ETH), 2006 and 13:00, Sammy Kipketer (KEN), 2000.

“First and foremost, we want to thank the incredible running community that has made this race so special for more than 30 years,” said Ashley Gibson, the founder of Groundwork Endurance who spearheaded the effort to return race ownership to its local roots.

“The Carlsbad 5000 is not only a showcase of world- class talent but a celebration of family, friends, and community. Our team has a great appreciation for the unrivaled history of this race and we are committed to producing a fantastic event in 2019. April can’t get here soon enough!” Race weekend promises a fast oceanfront course, healthy competition, and energetic atmosphere for participants of all ages and paces. The event features multiple age-group races throughout the morning leading up to the legendary pro women's and men's races.

The popular Junior Carlsbad, which celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2019, also features multiple races designed for children ages 12 and under. Kids distances range from a one-miler to the always entertaining 50-yard Toddler Trot and 25-yard Diaper Dash.

“The Carlsbad 5000 is truly one of the world’s great events and holds a special place in the hearts of the runners and longtime event staff alike,” said Dan Cruz, the race’s longtime Head of Communications.

“Few events can match the Carlsbad 5000’s tradition, spectator friendly course, electric race day atmosphere and I couldn’t be more pleased to continue working with the new ownership team.”

My Best Runs Director Bob Anderson has run the Carlsbad 5000 for 25 consecutive years.  

(12/04/2018) ⚡AMP
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Theodore Strange stopped to help a fallen marathoner in New York saving her life

Dr. Strange heard someone screaming, “Help!” Strange was just coming off of the Queensboro Bridge when his instincts took over. He immediately went over to the voice and found a woman on the ground, unconscious. Her friend had been calling out for help. Strange acted quickly, asking a volunteer to lift the woman’s legs, suspecting that she had passed out due to the strain of running the marathon. “She was losing her color and she was foaming at the mouth,'' said Strange, who is vice chairman of primary care at Northwell Health and vice president of medical operations at Staten Island University Hospital in Prince’s Bay. He quickly checked her pulse, “and she didn’t have any,” he said. Strange, a doctor of internal and geriatric medicine, immediately began administering CPR. Within minutes, he received a defibrillator after asking for one when his chest compressions weren’t effective. “After two or three more shocks, she was breathing on her own,” Strange recalled. However, the woman still wasn’t conscious. She was transported to New York-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center just up the road and, as Strange was watching emergency responders load her into the ambulance, he made the decision to continue on with his race. Strange ended up finishing in 5 hours and 16 minutes, but his most meaningful moment, by far, came at mile 16. "People have been calling me a hero, but I was just doing what I was trained to do,” he said. “We have a saying in New York: ‘If you see something, say something.’ But my philosophy has always been, ‘If you see something, do something.’” As for the woman who went into cardiac arrest, she’s a 41-year-old Ironman finisher who went down on the course due to a blood clot in her artery. According to her family, she’s currently in stable condition. This was the 25th time Dr Strange ran the New York City Marathon. (11/09/2018) ⚡AMP
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Men’s and women’s course records were broken at The 2018 Ironman World Championships

The 2018 Ironman World Championships produced two winning performances that made history. Both the men’s and women’s course records were broken with inspiring performances from Patrick Lange and Daniela Ryf on Saturday in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. In front of a roaring crowd on the coast of Kailua Bay, the women’s course record was shattered once again by Daniela Ryf, who completed the ultimate endurance test with a final time of 8:26:16. The performance marked Ryf’s fourth straight title, which means that the Swiss athlete is one of three women in history to win Kona more than three times in a row. She follows Hall of Famer Paula Newby-Fraser and Natascha Badmann in her accomplishment. Saturday’s race was arguably Ryf’s most hard-fought championship as she was stung by a jellyfish during the swim portion of the 140.6-mile course. “It’s incredible. Maybe the jellyfish gave me some superpower. I don’t know,” she said on the live television broadcast after crossing the finish line. Ryf endured the pain and completed the 2.4-mile swim in 57:27, at which point she was in 14th place. She fought her way back throughout the 112-mile bike portion with a split of 4:26:07, a new course record. The previous record was 4:44:19 set by Jodi Jackson in 1999. Ryf closed out the race with a time of 2:57:05 in the 26.2-mile run. Lange broke the finish line tape in a record time of 7:52:39. He is the first athlete in Ironman’s 40-year history to break eight hours on the grueling Kona course. His splits were 50:37 for the swim, 4:16:04 for the bike, and 2:41:31 for the run. (10/15/2018) ⚡AMP
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Boston Marathon Race Director Dave McGillivray is going in for triple bypass surgery on Friday Oct 12

This is a follow up on a story we published September 6.  On Friday October 12 Boston Marathon race director Dave McGillivray is going back into Mass General Hospital for open heart triple bypass surgery. 

Dave posted this an hour ago on Facebook.  "Five years ago yesterday (October 9, 2013) I was diagnosed with “severe coronary artery disease”. The two words that hit me were “disease” and “severe”. How did I get this “disease” and how severe is “severe”? On a dime, I changed everything – what I ate, how I ate, when I ate, sleep habits, stress in my life, started taking dietary supplements and the list goes on and on. In less than a year, I had “reversed” this disease by over 40%.

"I thought I beat it. Some of it was due to heredity, some was self-inflicted. I fixed what I could fix. I did the Ironman Triathlon again, many marathons, my birthday runs and even the World Marathon Challenge (7 marathons in 7 days on 7 continents).

"Once again, I thought I was over the hump. But, recently I learned that genetics trumps everything.  I am having triple bypass surgery this Friday Oct 12.  As you can imagine, a lot of thoughts (good and not so good) are swirling around my head. However, I’ve come to terms with all this now and realize how fortunate I am that this was caught, that I get a second chance and that I have the best medical care in the country.

I know there was some confusion that I already had this surgery but I only had the angiogram which showed that I needed the surgery. I expect to be in the hospital for 5-7 days and hope to be “shuffling” around the block within 3-4 weeks. I haven’t missed 3-4 days in a row of running in over 50 years.

"I can’t drive for 4-5 weeks – guess I’ll have to ride my bike everywhere...ha. This will be a new experience. I asked my heart surgeon this one question – do you think I will be able to recover enough to jog through my 47th Boston Marathon next April, that is, without pushing it between now and then (I will be a good patient – I hope)? He responded, “I would be extremely disappointed if you couldn’t do it.”

"That is all I needed...let’s get ‘er done. I have a lot more work to get done, miles to run and goals to accomplished. See you all on the other side."  (Photo taken when Dave finished his 46th straight Boston Marathon)

(10/10/2018) ⚡AMP
by Dave McGillivray
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Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series added a half marathon in Beijing

The Rock ’n’ Roll Marathon Series® announced the addition the Rock ‘n’ Roll Beijing Half Marathon, which will make its debut on October 13, 2018. The new venue becomes the latest addition to the China event calendar with half marathon and 5K run distances. “With the host city of Beijing joining the international tour, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series will now feature an event in one the most globally recognizable locations in China,” said Jeff Edwards, General Manager of Operations for IRONMAN China. “To run in this historic setting will be an incredible experience for athletes and spectators alike.” The musically themed running series is known for Bringing Fun to the Run™ with live music and entertainment on the course. Runners will get the chance to take in the scenic Beijing Olympic Forest Park, with dedicated running paths accompanied with great spectator and volunteer support. The races start and finish adjacent to the Olympic Green, directly below the iconic Beijing Olympic Tower with the post-race concert stage in the Southern Garden of the Olympic Forest Park. Beijing, the capital city of China has no shortage of wonderful attractions and is home to some of the country's best-known historical destinations, including a section of the famous Great Wall of China. Beijing, one of China’s four ancient capitals, is an enchanting and fascinating city with a history of more than 3,000 years. Widely considered one of the most magnificent cities in the world, Beijing is the cultural, political, and historical center of China. (10/09/2018) ⚡AMP
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World Record Endurance Marathoner Becca Pizzi will run the Falmouth Road Race

World Record Endurance Marathoner Becca Pizzi will run the Falmouth Road Race on Sunday, August 19th as part of the NF Northeast Team, a Burlington, MA based non-profit organization whose mission is to find a treatment and the cure for neurofibromatosis (NF). Pizzi is 38 years old and lives in Belmont, MA with her husband, Joe, and 10-year-old daughter, Taylor. Having been the first American female to run the World Marathon Challenge in 2016 - 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days - Pizzi recently went back and made history by running it again and breaking the World Record: 6 days, 7 hours and 58 minutes. Her current goal is to complete a marathon in all 50 states and to run the Kona Ironman. Pizzi was introduced to the genetic disorder neurofibromatosis through her good friend and running buddy Scot DeDeo.  His 2-year-old son Nat was diagnosed with neurofibromatosis type 1 when he was 7 months old. DeDeo says, “I'm super excited that Becca will be running with us at Falmouth. To have someone of her caliber is hugely motivational to the team and will really help us bring awareness to neurofibromatosis.” “I’ve run the Falmouth Road Race many times; it is one of my favorite races,” said Pizzi. “The race directors are very well organized, and they do an excellent job with the race and pulling the community together.” (07/17/2018) ⚡AMP
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74-year-old Gu Dawo is the the oldest official pacemaker in Chinese marathon history

When many friends of his age are suffering from senile diseases, some of whom cannot even walk without external support, Gu Dawo, 74, is running the marathon. For the second time, Gu shows up as a pacer on Sunday's International Marathon in Yinchuan, the capital city of northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Reigon. "I'm leading the pace and I also want to lead more to participate in this activity," Gu said. He has been quite experienced in marathon running. The past 2017 was a fruitful year for the 74-year old. Gu went to the United States to run a half marathon in Georgia, and a triathlon in the Ironman 70.3, Chattanooga of Tennessee. "I was the oldest to complete the triathlon, many jumped cheering when I was introduced to be from China in the award ceremony," He said, showing a video clip recording the big moment he was breasting the tape in Chattanooga. "A Chinese grandpa of 73 was recorded to be the oldest to complete the Ironman 70.3," A local American website said while many American audience nicknamed him as Chinese Grandpa to set a record. In the same year, he also competed in marathons in Lanzhou and Xiamen, becoming a running idol for people both old and young. "Everytime I compete in a marathon, many will come to me and say 'if only I could run like you at your age'," Gu said, adding that young people wish to be as strong as him when they are aged, but always excuse themselves that they are much too busy to exercise. "One should exercise young. Some of my age envying me of my physique have lost the best time to run for exercises," Gu said. "I always ran to work when I was young," he added. Since the 1990s, Gu has kept this habit of running and the first time he competed in a race, he won 20 yuan ($3.13US) which encouraged him a lot.  (05/23/2018) ⚡AMP
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His Doctor Calls Him a Diabectic Superhero after running 223 Miles

Crossing the finish line of a 223-mile relay race as a solo runner is quite an accomplishment very few athletes achieve in a lifetime. Add Type 1 diabetes to the mix, and it seems like a feat nearly impossible. Nearly. Don Muchow (56) completed Texas' Capital to Coast Relay, spanning from Austin to Corpus Christi, in October as a solo participant. Muchow said he was attracted to running because "It was cheap and easy to do, and there were not that many ways to do it wrong," he said. His doctor calls him a "mutant diabetic superhero." In the last 12 months in addition to relay he ran solo, he also did a full Ironman and a 100 mile ultra marathon. (02/17/2018) ⚡AMP
Epic Running Adventures
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The first Ironman was held in 1978 40 years ago

The first Ironman was held in 1978 in Oahu, Hawaii Ironman is beginning the “40 Years of Dreams” campaign in celebration. Throughout the course of the 2018 Ironman and Ironman 70.3 event series, the campaign will be rolled out in a variety of ways, leading up to the Ironman World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii on October 13. On February 18, 1978, 15 dreamers set out on the shores of Oahu, HawaiI, to complete what was thought to be the impossible – swimming 2.4 miles, biking 112 miles, and running 26.2 miles, totaling 140.6 miles in a single day, as they looked to put an end to the argument of who were the best athletes in the world – swimmers, cyclists, or runners. (02/16/2018) ⚡AMP
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30,000 runners are expected to enter the Bangkok Marathon

An estimated 30,000 runners from around the world are expected to enter the inaugural Amazing Thailand Marathon Bangkok on February 4. The event presented by Toyota is part of a five-year agreement between Ironman, the Tourism Authority of Thailand and the Thailand Tri-League. There’ll be a 42.195-kilometre marathon, a 21.1km half marathon, a 10km Bangkok Bank Run and, on February 3, a 4km Family Fun Run. Also planned is a Sports and Lifestyle Expo at the Bangkok Airport. (01/29/2018) ⚡AMP
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Robert Owens, 66-year-old plans to run 7 marathons in 7 days on 7 continents

Robert Owens at 66, has completed a dozen Ironman races, along with other grueling physical competitions such as SEALFIT (a 50-hour Navy SEAL hell week for civilians) and a recent endurance event in Greece that involved running 238 miles in eight days. In a few days he will embark on perhaps the most insane trial yet: the World Marathon Challenge, where he will run seven marathons on seven continents in seven days. (01/24/2018) ⚡AMP
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Rock ‘n’ Roll and Ironman As One Have Big Plans For Future

Dalian Wanda, owned by billionaire Wang ­Jianlin is expanding. Wanda bought Ironman for about $650 million. Wanda has also assembled a portfolio of dozens of endurance races outside of Ironman. Most notably, in June it scooped up Competitor Group Inc., parent company of the Rock ‘n’ Roll marathons, which fields races in 29 markets, with 600,000 participants. Thanks to these acquisitions, now part of Wanda Sports Holding, Wanda has quietly become the dominant global company in endurance sports. (01/21/2018) ⚡AMP
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