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5 Marathons Down, One to Go: Takeaways From Shalane Flanagan’s Fall “Eclipse”

The retired 2017 New York City Marathon champion takes inventory of how her attempt to complete six marathons in seven weeks has gone so far (October 18).

Shalane Flanagan has 131 miles worth of World Marathon Majors down since September 26 and 26.2 miles to go on November 7, at the New York City Marathon, to complete all six races this fall. So far? She’s still in one piece and in good spirits, she said.

This fall, Flanagan embarked on what she dubbed “the eclipse,” what we all hope is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to run all the major marathons in one season—and, in fact, just seven weeks—due to the rescheduling of big events during the pandemic. On Monday, Flanagan ran her own version of a Tokyo Marathon, the only in-person event that was canceled due to COVID-19, on a 12.4-mile looped flat course near her home in Portland, Oregon. She feared it might be the hardest one, lacking the energy and enthusiasm of the crowds, but she finished in 2:35:14—far from the “slow” time she predicted three days beforehand.

“I think this one is going to be the toughest to really get after it,” she said on Friday. “I’m going to guess that this will be my slowest one, though it will be fun with some friends and family out there.”

Flanagan, 40, retired from pro running in 2019, but she hasn’t retired from challenging goals, hoping to not just finish the 26.2-mile courses, but clock sub-three-hours on all of them. In addition to her race on Monday, she ran Boston on October 11 in 2:40:34, the day after she had clocked 2:46:39 in Chicago. Prior to that, Flanagan ran 2:35:04 on October 3 at the London Marathon and 2:38:32 on September 26 in Berlin.

Flanagan spoke with Women’s Running on Friday by phone to talk about how she’s measuring her effort, recovering, and learning valuable strategies along the way. Here are a few takeaways before she takes on the grand finale on November 7, at the New York City Marathon, a race she won in 2017.

You can let the pace come to you.

Flanagan has never experienced racing that is solely dictated by how she feels at the starting line. When it was her job to compete, the strategy was not always up to her—it was largely guided by the field.

“It’s fun because we figure out how hard we want to work each day—when you’re an elite, the race and other people are influencing how you run,” she said. “It’s now up to me on the day, how much I want to suffer. It’s a completely different dynamic. It’s like a different sport to me.”

The result? After racing the Boston Marathon five times, 2021 was the most enjoyable one yet. And the recreational athletes running around her are equally thrilled. One even pulled out a phone to FaceTime a friend to show he was racing with Flanagan.

“Normally I never feel in control at Boston. I get to mile 17 and I feel like trash. I never feel full of running, with the exception of maybe my first Boston because it was a kind of slow race. But the other times, the wheels were coming off and I didn’t enjoy it,” Flanagan said. “This was just a completely different experience and it was so fun and refreshing to have that.”

To decide on pace, Flanagan said she’s been looking at the weather, considering if she has a friend to run with that day, and how she feels when she starts. Then she lets the pace reveal itself.

“What feels sustainable, knowing that I’m not going max effort in any one of these?” she said. “Where’s that fine line that I can still recover as fast as possible but still dip my toe into that uncomfortable-ness that I’m craving?”

But even seasoned pros make rookie mistakes.

Although London was only her second race, it took a lot out of Flanagan, mostly because she made a mistake all of us can relate to: she went out too fast. She still finished in 2:35:04, but suffered during the second half (she ran 1:15:04 in the first 13.1 miles and 1:20:00 for the second).

“I had a cold and ran way too hard. That was the low so far,” Flanagan said. “I thought I maybe got myself in a pickle, with the [swollen] ankle, the cold, and all the travel, I was a little bit nervous about the whole thing. But now I can sniff the barn. I’ve physically rebounded.”

It was also the one race that she didn’t have a friend to run with, so she started in the wave with the sub-elite men.

“There was this vibe of competitiveness and of course I’m a competitive person so I fed off of it,” she said. “Then I got to 20 miles and I was like, ‘Uh-oh, You shouldn’t have done that.’ It backfired big for me. I learned my lesson on that one. That’s not the point of what I’m doing.”

Recovery is the name of the game.

Between the marathons, Flanagan pulls out all the old recovery tricks she’s learned along the way. Although unconvinced that ice baths make a big difference, she still did one between the back-to-back Chicago and Boston marathons. The travel and the running produce a lot of inflammation. She gets massages and physical therapy work twice a week after having no body work since stepping away from competition.

During her preparation before the attempt began in Berlin, she tried back-to-back long runs, including a 21-miler on a flat course at 6:40 pace followed by a hilly 21-miler at 6:20 pace the next day. When it came to the real-life scenario, she ended up feeling better in Boston than she did the day before in Chicago (“Which is kind of weird and kind of blew my mind,” she said.)

“I did a really good job hydrating, knowing those two were both going to be pretty humid marathons,” she said. “I think that’s why I came back well in Boston, because I did such a good job fueling and hydrating in Chicago, but I’ve been nonstop hungry since then.”

Reconstructed knees can take it, so far.

After retirement from competition in 2019, Flanagan had surgery on both of her knees and a long rehabilitation period afterward. So far, she hasn’t felt any pain and she’s worked with the Nike Sports Research Lab to have scans of her tendons and knees to monitor any damage through her training a racing.

“When I get back from each segment, they scan them to make sure the tissue in my knees is OK,” Flanagan said. “Anecdotally, I feel nothing and we’re actually seeing a strengthening of my quads—there’s no breakdown, which is incredible. My knees actually feel better than they did a year ago.”

The only hiccups so far occurred after the London Marathon, when she caught a cold and had a bit of an ankle flair up. It looked like she rolled the ankle, but she didn’t.

“London by far was the hardest for me. I didn’t pace myself well, so I had to stop and walk,” Flanagan said. “I was really tentative between London and Chicago. I didn’t run very much. The ankle was a low-level irritation. Maybe I tied my shoes too tight and got a tendon irritation? I have no idea what I would have done, but my physical therapist has been taping it to give it more stabilization.”

The super shoes help.

While the runner still needs to power the body over 26.2 miles, it’s no great secret that the newest models of shoes, like the Nike AlphaFly, can help ease the wear and tear on the legs, absorbing more of the shock as we pound the pavement day in and day out. Flanagan believes that the technology is a nice tool to have to reach her audacious goal.

“I think the foam is definitely a game changer in terms of shock absorption,” she said. “It’s been to my benefit to be able to come back. But at the end of the day, if you still aren’t fit enough to keep up with the shoes, you can still walk like I did in London. But typically my quads are sore after Boston. I have some other soreness but the shoe allows a quicker recovery.”

The New York City Marathon finish line will be a special place, once again.

When Flanagan won the 2017 New York City Marathon, it was the victory of her career. She had always believed she had the ability to win a World Marathon Major but as she edged toward the end of her competitive days, she started losing hope that it might be a box she would leave unchecked.

When she approached the finish line that year, with a fist pump and a “f*ck yes!” the stretch of Central Park by Tavern on the Green instantly became sacred ground. But after completing six marathons in seven weeks, will it be doubly so?

“I think any time people set hard goals and achieve them, yeah I think it’ll be a big celebration with my team who’s helped me do this. We’ve had so much fun and I’ll be sad that it’s over, to a degree because I’ve formed a really great team around me to do this and we’ve had a blast,” Flanagan said. “But it’ll be fun to dream up another adventure. There’s great phases in life to have these crazy things going on and then it’ll be nice to get back to some normalcy, not traveling the world running marathons.”

(10/22/2021) Views: 100 ⚡AMP
by Erin Strout (Women’s Running)
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Nell Rojas was so ready for Boston and ended up sixth setting a PR and finishing first American while Shalane Flanagan finishes her 4th major

The top US woman at the Boston Marathon was Nell Rojas from Boulder, Colo., placing sixth overall in a personal best 2 hours, 27 minutes, 12 seconds. It was her fourth Marathon.

She paced the pack for the first 10 kilometers, which was not part of her plan.

“I was expecting this one to go out fast and to just be able to hang on to the back of the pack,” said Rojas. “I never lead, so that was interesting for me.”

Despite being the top US finisher, Rojas believes she has plenty of room for improvement, citing downhills and staying relaxed in the pack as weaknesses.

“I learned a lot,” said Rojas. “I think that now that I know the course I can alter my training accordingly and run faster next time.”

Rojas who finished ninth at the 2020 Olympic Trials in 2:30:29, ran for the University of Northern Arizona and spent much of her mid-20s focusing on triathlons before transitioning back to distance running in 2018. Before Monday, her personal best in the marathon was 2:28:06.

Rojas is a coach in Boulder, where she developed a running and strength training program for all ages alongside her father, Ric Rojas.

Nell credits her father with being a role model athletically.

“Just growing up with that inspiration, trying to follow in his footsteps has been super helpful,” she said. “He has been my biggest supporter and cheerleader.”

The second American finisher was Elaina Tabb of Allison Park, Pa., She finished 12th in 2:30:33 in her first major marathon. Much of Tabb’s prior experience came in the half-marathon, where she placed 64th in the 2018 World Championships. She finished 24th at the 2021 Olympic Trials in 10,000 meters.

Marblehead native Shalane Flanagan, a former New York City Marathon winner and Olympic 10,000-meter silver medalist, also competed, just one day after running the Chicago Marathon. She placed 33rd on the women’s side in both races, finishing Boston in 2:40:36 and Chicago in 2:46:39. Flanagan retired in 2019 but returned this year in an attempt to run all six majors under three hours.  Her average after running four marathons in 16 days is 2:40:13.   Her time in Berlin (9/26) was 2:38:32 and London (10/3) 2:35:04.  

2018 Boston Marathon champion Desiree Linden placed 16th race with a time of 2:35:25. It wasn’t the performance for Linden hoped for, but she enjoyed the experience on one of her favorite courses.

“I was just excited to get out there,” said Linden. “Yeah, I didn’t have the day that I wanted but it was a pleasure to be back on the course and see the crowds.”

Linden plans to run the New York City Marathon on November 7. Boston was her main focus but is glad to have another race to run.

“It’s nice to have the next one,” said Linden. “To be able to say ‘Hey maybe this one will build and help me get ready for that.’ ”

 

(10/11/2021) Views: 211 ⚡AMP
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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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Ruth Chepngetich Marks First US Race With First-Place Finish in Chicago Marathon

Ruth Chepngetich marked her first appearance racing in the U.S. with a huge victory at the 2021 Bank of America Chicago Marathon.

After dropping out of the Olympic Marathon in August due to an injury, Kenya’s Ruth Chepngetich, 27, came to the Chicago Marathon eager for a victory.

She blasted off at world record pace, running 15:37 for the first 5K and dropping her male pacer, Johnny Rutford, by around mile 8.5. But by mile 10, she'd slowed dramatically. Still—despite running much of the race alone and clocking a 5:53 mile between miles 23 to 24—she’d banked enough of a lead to hang on for the victory, crossing the line in 2:22:31

Since the Kenyan sensation made her marathon debut in 2017, she has finished in the top three of every race she has completed and Chicago was no different.

Taking an early lead in the race, Chepngetich beat out American competitors Emma Bates and Sara Hall and crossed the finish line well ahead of the rest of the elite women's field.

Chicago marks just the latest in a series of wins for Chepngetich, who also won in Dubai, Istanbul (twice), and at the 2019 IAAF World Championships. But it also marks a big return after a disappointing performance in the Tokyo Olympics.

While she went into the Olympics as the favorite for gold, she struggled during the race and dropped out around the 30K mark, her first DNF at the marathon distance.

Chepngetich holds a marathon personal best of 2:17:08, making her the fourth fastest woman in history.

“I have never raced in the States and making my debut in such a great race like the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is more than a dream to me,” said Chepngetich. “I will give all myself trying to run as fast as possible. The presence of such a wonderful elite field will boost me.”

Shalane Flanagan finishes 25th in the women's race at the #ChicagoMarathon in 2:46:39. Now she has less than 22 hours to get to the starting line of the #BostonMarathon. Her times so far: Berlin, 9/26, 2:38:32 London, 10/3, 2:35:04 Chicago, 10/10, 2:46:39

 

(10/10/2021) Views: 97 ⚡AMP
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Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is the pinnacle of achievement for elite athletes and everyday runners alike. On race day, runners from all 50 states and more than 100 countries will set out to accomplish a personal dream by reaching the finish line in Grant Park. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is known for its flat and...

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Shalane Flanagan to run 6 marathons in 42 days

Nearly three years after Shalane Flanagan officially retired from elite racing, she’s toeing the line of her marquee event again — not once, but six times in 42 days. With five of the six World Major marathons coming up in the next few weeks, the 16-time national champion will be aiming to run each of them in less than three hours, and then to run a sixth to make up for the postponed Tokyo Marathon.

Because of delays caused by COVID-19, five of the six World Majors are being crammed into a tightly packed fall schedule. Flanagan’s marathon of marathons will start in Berlin on September 26, the same course where she ran her personal best of 2:21:14 in 2014 and became the fourth-fastest American marathon runner of all time. She’ll have one week of recovery before heading to the U.K. to compete in the London Marathon, and from there she’ll return to North America where she’ll run the Chicago Marathon on October 10 and turn around the very next day to run the Boston Marathon on October 11.

The Tokyo Marathon was to be her next race on October 17, but organizers postponed the race again until March 2022. In its place, Flanagan will travel to Portland, Oregon to run her fifth marathon in four weeks. She’ll then have three weeks of recovery before completing her challenge at the New York City Marathon on November 7. New York will be a special place to end her gruelling series, since it was there that she became the first American woman to win the race in 40 years in 2017.

Flanagan retired from professional running in 2019, and since then has had two reconstructive knee surgeries, become a coach with the Bowerman Track Club and adopted a baby boy. In an interview with Self, she explained that she’s taken on this challenge as a way to “reunite” with running after retirement and knee surgery.

“I felt the need to set some goals again,” she said. “Realizing this was a once in a lifetime opportunity presenting itself, with six major world marathons in 42 days, I feel like I’m doing it for myself, for my son, and for young women to showcase the connection between mental and physical health and how important of a role athletics can play in your life.”

(09/25/2021) Views: 131 ⚡AMP
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Three years after retirement, Shalane Flanagan will run Berlin, London, Chicago, Boston and one other marathon this fall

Nearly three years after Shalane Flanagan officially retired from elite racing, she’s toeing the line of her marquee event again — not once, but six times in 42 days. With five of the six World Major marathons coming up in the next few weeks, the 16-time national champion will be aiming to run each of them in less than three hours, and then to run a sixth to make up for the postponed Tokyo Marathon.

Because of delays caused by COVID-19, five of the six World Majors are being crammed into a tightly packed fall schedule. Flanagan’s marathon of marathons will start in Berlin on September 26, the same course where she ran her personal best of 2:21:14 in 2014 and became the fourth-fastest American marathon runner of all time.

She’ll have one week of recovery before heading to the U.K. to compete in the London Marathon, and from there she’ll return to North America where she’ll run the Chicago Marathon on October 10 and turn around the very next day to run the Boston Marathon on October 11.

The Tokyo Marathon was to be her next race on October 17, but organizers postponed the race again until March 2022. In its place, Flanagan will travel to Portland, Oregon to run her fifth marathon in four weeks.

She’ll then have three weeks of recovery before completing her challenge at the New York City Marathon on November 7. New York will be a special place to end her grueling series, since it was there that she became the first American woman to win the race in 40 years in 2017.

Flanagan retired from professional running in 2019, and since then has had two reconstructive knee surgeries, become a coach with the Bowerman Track Club and adopted a baby boy. In an interview with Self, she explained that she’s taken on this challenge as a way to “reunite” with running after retirement and knee surgery.

“I felt the need to set some goals again,” she said. “Realizing this was a once in a lifetime opportunity presenting itself, with six major world marathons in 42 days, I feel like I’m doing it for myself, for my son, and for young women to showcase the connection between mental and physical health and how important of a role athletics can play in your life.”

(09/21/2021) Views: 164 ⚡AMP
by Brittany Hambleton
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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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CAS report on Shelby Houlihan explains reasons for four-year ban

In June, American 1,500m record-holder Shelby Houlihan was given a four-year ban by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) after testing positive for the steroid nandrolone in December 2020. The Bowerman Track Club athlete appealed the ban and attempted to prove her innocence, since the athlete was hoping to race at the U.S. Olympic trials, but the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) upheld her suspension. The AIU has now released the 44-page decision into her case, upholding the ban. Houlihan will not be able to compete until January, 2025.

To recap, the substance found in Houlihan’s sample was nandrolone, specifically 19-norandrosterone (19-NA), a steroid sometimes found in pork offal (pig organ meat). She claimed the positive result was due to having ingested pork offal in burrito from a food truck the night before she was tested, but the CAS did not accept her explanation and upheld the AIU’s charge. Houlihan also submitted a hair test and a lie detector test, both supporting her innocence, but these were found to be inadequate.

The decision included the following statement regarding the evidence against Houlihan:

“The Athlete’s explanation that the 19-NA in her sample resulted from her consumption of the meat of an uncastrated boar simply cannot be accepted. The explanation presupposes a cascade of factual and scientific improbabilities, which means that its composite probability is (very) close to zero.”

Specifically, the CAS panel found that though it was possible that Houlihan unwittingly ingested the meat of an uncastrated boar, for various reasons it was highly unlikely, and moreover, that even if she had, it would not account for the relatively high levels of nandrolone found in her samples. It found that the nandrolone found in her samples was consistent with that found in products commonly sold on the Internet for the purpose of enhancing athletic performance.

Several of Houlihan’s teammates defended her as a clean athlete, including Courtney Frerichs, who was with her when she ate the burrito (and who ate from the same food truck). Frerich’s sister, Lindsey Frerichs, who also ate with them that night, provided a witness statement, as did Bowerman coach Shalane Flanagan and athletes Matt Centrowitz (whom Houlihan was dating at the time) and Karissa Schweizer.

Despite their testimonies, the court found Houlihan to be guilty, saying she failed to provide a plausible explanation for the presence of nandrolone in her urine sample, and concluded that the anti-doping rule violation she was charged with must have been intentional.

The ban forced Houlihan to miss the U.S. Olympic trials and the Tokyo Olympics, where she was assumed to be a medal favourite, and it will prevent her from competing at the upcoming World Championships and the Paris 2024 Summer Games.

Editor’s update Sept. 3, 2021: According to a story on LetsRun.com, Houlihan plans to appeal her case to the Swiss Federal Tribunal.

(09/04/2021) Views: 68 ⚡AMP
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SARA HALL RUNS FASTEST HALF MARATHON BY AMERICAN THIS YEAR, MISSES RECORD ATTEMPT

Hall clocks 68:44 in return to Cottage Grove as part of buildup for Chicago Marathon in October, now boasts three career-sub 69 performances

Sara Hall has produced two of the strongest half marathon performances in U.S. history during the past 13 months in Cottage Grove, Ore., but just like last year, Saturday’s effort along the Row River bike path came up short of her pursuit of the American record.

Hall, representing ASICS, clocked 68 minutes, 44 seconds, after she ascended to the No. 6 all-time U.S. competitor last year by running 68:18 along the Harms Park boat ramp parking lot in Cottage Grove.

Hall, who became the fastest American and No. 19 performer in the world this year, now has three career marks under 69 minutes. She also ran 68:58 at the Houston Half Marathon last year.

Molly Huddle still holds the record of 67:25 from the 2018 Houston Half Marathon.

Hall, 38, joined Shalane Flanagan, Jordan Hasay, Emily Sisson and Huddle as the only American women with at least three career sub-69 performances on record-eligible courses.

Hall used Saturday’s opportunity as part of her preparation for the Chicago Marathon, scheduled for Oct. 10.

Hall, who ran the second-fastest performance by a U.S. female with her 2:20:32 effort in December at the Marathon Project in Chandler, Ariz., will be again taking aim at the 2006 American record of 2:19:36 held by Deena Kastor.

(08/22/2021) Views: 109 ⚡AMP
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American record holder Shelby Houlihan receives four-year ban week before Olympic track trials

Accomplished distance runner Shelby Houlihan was handed a four-year ban exactly one week before the start of U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials.

Houlihan was considered an Olympic medal contender entering this year. The 2016 Olympian holds American records in both the 1500m and 5000m. In 2018, she became the second woman ever to win both distances at the U.S. outdoor championships.

Houlihan placed fourth in the 1500m at the 2019 World Championships.

The 28-year-old had not competed yet this year, which was explained on Monday evening.

Houlihan tested positive for nandrolone in an out-of-competition urine test administered by the World Anti-Doping Agency on Dec. 15, 2020.

Nandrogen is an androgen and anabolic steroid known to increase muscle mass.

In a virtual press conference, well-known sports attorney and founder of Global Sports Advocates Paul Greene walked reporters through Houlihan’s case, alongside Houlihan and Bowerman Track Club coaches Jerry Schumacher and Shalane Flanagan, an Olympic silver medalist in the 10,000m.

“Shelby is an innocent athlete,” Greene declared. “What happened to her is entirely unjust.”

“I don’t have the words to articulate the depth of sadness I feel for you,” head coach Schumacher said in his statement.

After being notified of the positive test in January, Houlihan created a food log of everything she had consumed the week prior to the test.

Her team believes the result came from a pork burrito Houlihan purchased at a food truck near her home in Beaverton, Oregon, and ate the night before the 6 a.m. test.

It has been noted in WADA documents that consumption of meat, specifically pig offal, can lead to the presence of nandrolone.

Greene explained that Houlihan initially received a provisional suspension of more than three months, which caused them to opt for a single hearing before the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

In the interim, Houlihan had a hair sample tested and passed a polygraph test in an effort to prove her innocence. Greene hired a private investigator and former WADA scientist to help prove their case as well. He pushed for the sample to be tested at a second lab to no avail.

According to Greene, Houlihan has been tested approximately 100 times since 2016 and has never tested positive or missed a test in that time.

The CAS hearing was held the first week of June, with the final ruling of a four-year ban delivered on Friday, June 11. That would take Houlihan out of the running of the Paris 2024 Olympics as well; she said she is currently unsure of what her future holds.

“I feel completely devastated, lost, broken, angry, confused and betrayed by the very sport that I loved and poured myself into just to see how good I was,” Houlihan said as she fought back tears. “I want to be very clear: I’ve never taken any performance-enhancing substances and that includes the one of which I have been accused. … I do this sport because I love it, I have so much fun doing it and it’s always the best part of my day.

“This sport means everything to me. I believe doping and cheating is weak. … I would never disrespect the sport, my competitors, my teammates, my coaches, my family and my fans this way. I love the sport too much. …

“I’ve always wanted to stand at the top of an Olympic podium with a gold medal around my neck, knowing I did that, and now I am not sure that will ever happen.”

Greene is considering an appeal to the Swiss federal tribunal.

(06/15/2021) Views: 116 ⚡AMP
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Olympian Amy Cragg Officially Retires and Joins the Puma Coaching Staff in North Carolina

She won bronze in the marathon at the 2017 world championships and ran 2:21:42 at the 2018 Tokyo Marathon—her lifetime best.

Amy Cragg, who represented the U.S. at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, is officially retiring from professional running. She is now coaching the Puma-sponsored training group alongside her husband, Alistair, in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Her career highlights include winning the 2016 Olympic Marathon Trials, finishing third in the marathon at the 2017 world championships, and running a 2:21:42 PR in the 2018 Tokyo Marathon.

Cragg withdrew from the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials last February, citing illness.

Amy Cragg—who won the 2016 Olympic Marathon Trials, took the bronze medal in the marathon at the 2017 IAAF World Championships, and ran the 2018 Tokyo Marathon in 2:21:42, making her the sixth-fastest American in history at the distance—announced she is retiring from competitive running.

She is now officially a coach with the new Puma-sponsored training group based near Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Her husband, Alistair, is the group’s head coach.

Cragg, 37, said in a phone call with Runner’s World that she took the time she needed to make the decision. “It was definitely time [to retire],” she said. “It’s been great. I’m definitely enjoying life on the other side.”

She had suffered from persistent fatigue over the past couple of years, which kept her from competing at the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials. Now, she says, she’s feeling well again and running between two and four miles, several times a week, “just to get out there and enjoy it.”

In the summer of 2020, Cragg and her husband drove across the country from their home in Portland, Oregon, where she had trained with Bowerman Track Club for years. They looked at various locations along the way, trying to figure out where to establish Puma’s new training base.

Although they considered different spots at altitude, they ultimately decided the Research Triangle area of North Carolina was ideal for its weather, ease of travel to European track meets and American road races, and the 22-mile, crushed gravel American Tobacco Trail, which has every quarter mile marked. (The Craggs took a wheel out to measure 10 miles of the trail, and the quarters were spot on.)

They also considered medical support in the area, affordability, and job prospects for runners’ significant others.

“I’ve lived in places where people didn’t have a social life or their significant other didn’t have a social life or couldn’t work, and they were depressed,” Cragg said, “and that doesn’t lead to longevity in the sport. We want to create an environment that leads to longevity in the sport. For a lot of people, it takes them a little longer to get there. However long it takes you, we want it to be a good place for that.”

The team currently has Taylor Werner and Fiona O’Keeffe, both of whom are qualified for next month’s U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials; Steven Fahy, a steeplechaser who currently is nursing a foot injury; and Emmanuel Roudolff-Levisse, a French marathoner. The Craggs—believers in the powers of group training—expect their numbers to grow, albeit slowly.

“We aren’t in a rush to get people,” she said. “We want to get the right people. We’re hoping these are 10-year athletes, not two- or three-year athletes.”

Cragg’s career flourished when she was in her 30s, and she was involved in some of the more memorable moments in Trials history. In 2012, she narrowly missed making the team in the marathon, finishing fourth at the Trials in Houston behind Shalane Flanagan, Desiree Linden (then Davila), and Kara Goucher.

But Cragg (then Hastings) turned her attention back to the track and won the 10,000 meters at the 2012 track trials to earn her first trip to the Games. At the Olympics in London, she finished 11th in 31:10.69, her personal best.

Four years later, at the 2016 Olympic Marathon Trials in Los Angeles, Cragg and training partner Flanagan ran stride for stride together, breaking the race open before the halfway point. But by the 23rd mile, Flanagan was struggling in the heat. Cragg slowed to stay with her, urging her onto the finish. With less than two miles to go, and Linden lurking in the background, Cragg finally left Flanagan and won the race in 2:28:20, waving her visor as she broke the tape.

Linden was second, in 2:28:54, and Flanagan willed herself across the line in third in 2:29:19, where she collapsed and was carried off the course. In Rio, their finishing order was reversed: Flanagan was sixth, Linden seventh, and Cragg ninth, the best collective performance by any country’s three athletes in the event. (The 2016 gold and silver medalists are currently serving suspensions for anti-doping violations.)

Training at times up to 130 miles per week with the Bowerman Track Club in Portland, Cragg qualified for the world championships in 2017 in London. At the race, she moved into third place with 400 meters and sprinted to a bronze medal.

Cragg said that was her top moment as a professional runner. “It kind of just made my entire career worthwhile,” she said.

Seven months later, in Tokyo, she ran her lifetime PR, 2:21:42, taking nearly six minutes off her previous best and putting her among the country’s top runners in history.

Cragg’s world championships bronze marked a renaissance of sorts for American women’s distance running. In Chicago in 2017, Jordan Hasay ran 2:20:57, Flanagan won the New York City Marathon in 2017, and Linden won Boston in 2018.

But after Tokyo, Cragg experienced a series of health setbacks and never was able to regain her top form for a marathon. She ran 15:54 5K in New York in November 2018 and finished third at the U.S. 5K championships, but she raced only twice in 2019. Both races—a 10K and a half marathon—were far from her best. She had planned to run the Chicago Marathon, but pulled out in the summer.

In an interview with Runner’s World at the time, Cragg talked about the fatigue she felt. “I think we just went too hard for too long,” she said. “I ‘cooked myself’ is what I’ll say. Took some time off when we realized it wasn’t coming around for Chicago. Now I’m feeling a lot better and ready to go.”

But citing illness, she withdrew from the 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials in February in Atlanta.

Her only race results from 2020 were pandemic-era intrasquad meets put on by her Bowerman Track Club at a high school track in Portland. Cragg ran a few 400s and 800s at slow paces—seen as fulfilling contractual obligations.

Her peers had nothing but praise for her.

“I’m thrilled for Amy. She’s had a tremendous career,” Linden, who first met Cragg when they were undergraduates at Arizona State University, told Runner’s World in a text message. “If people could have eavesdropped on our long run conversations during our ASU days, they would have laughed at how audacious our goals were. It’s been incredible to watch her check them all off one by one and then accomplish even more. I’m grateful that while being in a hyper-competitive career, Amy’s been able to remain a friend, and I know we’ll have many more conversations about her future goals.”

Shalane Flanagan wrote in a text, “I’m so happy for her. She was a wonderful teammate and one of the toughest athletes I got to train alongside. I treasure all the time spent together chasing big goals and dreams.” 


(06/06/2021) Views: 752 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Molly Seidel Racing A Special Edition Of The Atlanta Half-Marathon On The Atlanta Motor Speedway February 28

Gripping the steering wheel of her Audi Allroad while driving on an Arizona highway three days ago, Molly Seidel spoke breezily on her cell phone about what it’s like to go fast.  Seidel, whose stunning second place finish at the USA Olympic Team Trials nearly a year ago in Atlanta catapulted her into the national spotlight, enjoys both running and driving fast.

“This thing goes fast,” she said of her car.  “I’m a bit of a leadfoot.”

Seidel, 26, will be returning to Atlanta on February 28, where she will run a special edition of the Atlanta Half-Marathon which will be held at the sprawling Atlanta Motor Speedway, partly on the facility’s 1.5-mile race track.  The race, part of Atlanta’s Marathon Weekend organized by the Atlanta Track Club, was moved from the streets of the city a year ago to the racetrack grounds in order to offer athletes of all abilities a COVID-safe, in-person running competition.  Seidel said she’s never actually run on a racetrack, but she’s very excited by the concept.

“When the race opportunity came up in Atlanta we immediately jumped on that,” Seidel told Race Results Weekly.  She added: “I’ve had a lot of exposure to race tracks because my dad and my brother race cars semi-professionally.  It’s super cool to watch.  I love it.”

Speed is what Seidel will be after in Atlanta.  She’ll be using this event as part of her build-up to the Olympic Marathon in Sapporo on August 7, and thinks it fits perfectly into the training plan she and coach Jon Green have devised.  She is trying to use as productively as possible the extra year of preparation time she’s been given by the pandemic in advance of the Tokyo Olympics.

“Basically being in kind of a unique position of having already secured the spot several months out we, my coach Jon and I, got to plan backwards a little bit,” Seidel said.  “A big part of that is try to, like, get in a combination of strength and speed that I need for Sapporo.  For me I really wanted to be able to focus on the half-marathon a little bit more just because… doing stuff on the roads gets me a little bit more excited than doing stuff on the track.  The half-marathon is a distance that I haven’t been able to deeply explore yet.  It’s been fun getting to learn that distance a little bit better.”

It’s hard to believe that Seidel only ran her first half-marathon on October 26, 2019, at the low-key Cape Cod Half-Marathon in Massachusetts.  Facing no competition, she clocked 1:14:10 and finished ahead of the next woman finisher by more than eight and a half minutes. Some five weeks later, she ran her first serious half off of full training, winning the Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll San Antonio & Half-Marathon in a very elite 1:10:27, bettering Shalane Flanagan’s course record by 22 seconds.  That performance was pivotal because it qualified her for the Olympic Trials where she made her marathon debut.

Since then, Seidel has lowered her half-marathon best to 1:09:20, a mark she set in a “micro race” outside of Las Vegas last month which only had 37 finishers.  For that event, called the Las Vegas Gold Half-Marathon, Seidel said that she went into it with no set goals and just tried to have fun.

“It felt great,” she said of the race which was only for elite athletes.  “Really my coach just told me, don’t look at the watch.  Just go out, hop between groups of guys as they come back to you, but have fun with it.  That’s really what it was.  It was just a chance to bust a run, trying to get back into the swing of things, try out the new shoes.  Yeah, it was a good day.”

The “new shoes” were her Puma racing shoes, the first time she wore them in competition after announcing she had switched sponsors from Saucony to Puma last month.  She’s excited by that transition, and got very comfortable with her new competition footwear by wearing them extensively in training.

“Everybody at Puma, from the first time I went in to meet with them to now when I’m working with them in an official capacity, has been just awesome,” said Seidel whose cell phone signal cut out a few times as she drove through a forest.  “That was one of the reasons I wanted to go with them, like, really game for some awesome ideas.  It’s really a lot of innovation going on and a really cool attitude.  It’s been very fun.  It’s been a really good transition.  I’ve been enjoying it immensely. Even more so getting to wear, frankly, a really great pair of racing shoes, not only training in them but racing in them, exploring new things that I can do.”

As good as her performance was in the Las Vegas race, Seidel was quick to point out that it did not represent a full effort off of dedicated preparation.  The Atlanta race will be different. She wants to see what she can do after putting everything into it, like a race car driver bringing out a new car with a newly tuned engine.

“The Vegas one we just kind of trained through that,” she explained.  “We just used that as a workout.  This one we’ll go into it with a full-on race mentality, taper a little bit that week.”

While Seidel wouldn’t offer a specific time goal, the Atlanta Track Club has recruited two male pace makers to shepherd her through the two-loop, record-eligible course at a sub-1:09 pace.  Depending on how she feels, it is always possible that the American record could enter her mind.  The USA record is 1:07:25 by Molly Huddle set in Houston in 2018.  Only four American women have run sub-1:08 on a record-quality course: Huddle, Emily Sisson (1:07:30), Deena Kastor (1:07:34), and Jordan Hasay (1:07:55).  (Kara Goucher also ran 1:06:57 at the slightly downhill Great North Run in England in 2007).

“Road racing is just exciting to me in a way that track racing is not,” Seidel admitted.  “Not that track racing isn’t exciting, but it’s just a different style of running.  It’s much more similar to cross country in college, rather than that exacting nature of hitting your exact paces every lap on the track.  I think I love the competition and… the fact that it will be different every time.  I personally find that road racing lights my soul on fire more.”

Of the other 16 elite women entered in the race at least two, Eilish McColgan of Scotland and Natosha Rogers of Rochester Hills, Mich., could challenge Seidel.  McColgan, the 2018 European Championships silver medalist at 5000m, will be making her half-marathon debut.  She has covered the distance before, unofficially, working as a pacemaker at the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon last October where she went through halfway in 1:12:26.  She was supposed to run the super-fast RAK Half-Marathon in Ras Al Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates, but that race was recently cancelled due to the pandemic.  Rogers, now part of the Hansons-Brooks Original Distance Project, was the USA half-marathon champion in 2017 where she set a personal best of 1:10:45.  Seven women in the field have run sub-1:14.

Motor racing may excite Seidel, but she won’t be driving her father’s race car any time soon.  She’s 5′-4″ (163cm), and the driver’s seat is permanently set for his six-foot height.

“I’d love to but, frankly, I’m not tall enough,” she said with a laugh.  “It’s very set for their specific heights.  So, I’d need to wear stilted shoes, or something.  I do enjoy driving very much.  I’m definitely not the fastest in my family, though.”

(02/21/2021) Views: 307 ⚡AMP
by Let’s Run
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2016 Olympic steeplechaser Colleen Quigley announced that she was leaving Bowerman Track Club, and has finally revealed that she will be training under former FSU coach, Josh Seitz

In a turn of events that surprised many in the running community, American Olympian Colleen Quigley announced on February 4 that she is leaving the Bowerman Track Club, where she’s trained for the last five years.

The 28-year-old, who competed in the 3,000m steeplechase at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, will now be coached by Josh Seitz, who worked with her when she attended Florida State University (FSU).

She announced that she would be leaving the BTC on her Instagram page. In a heartfelt post, she spoke about helping her coach, Jerry Schumacher, recruit more women to the team, which, at the time Quigley joined, consisted only of three other women, including Shalane Flanagan, Emily Infeld and Sammy Silva. Since then, the BTC women’s squad (affectionately named the ‘Bowerman Babes’) has grown into one of the most dominant groups of female distance runners in the country.

Quigley also wrote an ‘Open Letter to the BTC’ on her website, in which she described what the team has meant to her over the last several years, and gave special shout-outs to many of her teammates and coaches.

"BTC, you were the perfect place  for a young athlete fresh out of college to land,” she wrote. “If going pro had meant training alone at age 22, I don’t think I ever would have made it. You gave me teammates and coaches who supported me and my goals.”

In an Instagram Live on Thursday, Quigley finally announced that her new coach would be Seitz, who is currently the assistant cross country and distance coach at Portland State University, where he has been coaching since 2017. According to his Portland State profile, in his four years on staff, he has helped a few steeplechase athletes set school records, and has led one steeplechaser to two podium finishes at the Big Sky Outdoor Championships.

Quigley´s teammate Kate Grace also announced that she would be leaving the BTC and will be heading to Colorado to train with Emma Coburn on Team Bosshard. There have been several changes to the Bowerman Track Club over the last year, with Gabriela Debues-Stafford, Sinclaire Johnson and Amos Bartelsmeyer joining the squad, and Ryan Hill, Andrew Bumbalough, Grace and Quigley leaving. Quigley has not yet announced any new sponsorship deals.

(02/12/2021) Views: 299 ⚡AMP
by Brittany Hambleton
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Shalane Flanagan’s Favorite Marathon Training Meal

This recipe from Elyse Kopecky is a nutritional powerhouse.

When Shalane Flanagan traveled to Bend, Oregon, to kick off recipe testing for Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow. with me, this Thai Quinoa Salad was the very first recipe to come out of the kitchen.

It was love at first bite. We continued to tweak the recipe, not because it needed much work, but because we secretly wanted an excuse to make it time and again. This is the salad Shalane made on a near weekly basis while training for the 2017 NYC Marathon and 2018 Boston Marathon.

We highly recommend the use of fish sauce (a store-bought condiment) to give the salad a true Thai-inspired umami kick, but if you’re vegan or vegetarian, the salad is crown-worthy made with just soy sauce.

Make this salad on a Sunday night for work lunches all week long or serve as a side dish with a juicy, grilled steak for a dinner set to impress.

Thai Quinoa Salad

SERVES: 5

Ingredients

1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained

2 cups thinly sliced purple cabbage

3 green onions, white and green parts sliced

1 cup packed mint leaves, chopped (cilantro works too)

1 cup packed basil leaves, chopped

1 jalapeño or serrano pepper, seeds removed, minced (optional)

½ cup roasted peanuts, chopped

Dressing

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

â…“ cup fresh lime juice (2 to 3 limes)

2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari

2 tablespoons honey (or maple syrup)

1 tablespoon fish sauce (such as Red Boat)

DIRECTIONS

STEP 1

Here is a foolproof method to cook quinoa: In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring to a boil 1½ cups water and the quinoa. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed. Transfer to a large salad bowl, fluff with a fork, and set aside to cool.

STEP 2

Meanwhile, put the olive oil, lime juice, soy sauce or tamari, honey, and fish sauce (if using) in a glass jar or bowl and stir to combine.

STEP 3

Once the quinoa is cool, add the carrots, cabbage, onion, mint, basil, and pepper (if using) to the bowl and toss to combine. Add the dressing and toss again. Taste and, if needed, add more fish sauce or soy sauce.

STEP 4

Top with the peanuts. Chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour or until ready to serve.

This salad will stay fresh in airtight glass containers in the fridge for up to 5 days.

(10/11/2020) Views: 401 ⚡AMP
by Women’s Running
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Shannon Rowbury just might make her fourth US Olympic Team post-pregnancy

Shannon Rowbury proved she can run elite times post-pregnancy. Next year, she hopes to be the latest example that an Olympic career doesn’t end with motherhood.

“Having a child isn’t a death sentence,” she told fellow Olympic runner and mom Alysia Montaño in a recent On Her Turf interview. “You can come back even better.”

Rowbury, a 35-year-old, three-time Olympian, raced this month on the Diamond League circuit for the first time in three years and since having daughter Sienna in June 2018.

It went pretty well. She clocked her second-fastest 5000m ever, a 14:45.11 to place fifth in Monaco.

Only four other Americans have ever gone faster. One is retired (Shalane Flanagan). It’s very possible that two of the others could focus on other distances next summer (Shelby Houlihan and Molly Huddle).

Rowbury is right in the mix to make a fourth straight Olympics, given three U.S. women qualify per event. She can become the oldest U.S. woman to race on an Olympic track since Gail Devers in 2004, and one of the few moms to do so.

Rowbury is the former American record holder at 1500m and 5000m with a pair of fourth-place finishes from racing the former at the last three Olympics.

In 2018, she returned to training eight weeks after having Sienna. Ramping up too quickly led to a stress fracture in early 2019. She felt fatigued from sleep deprivation and breastfeeding and struggled with her identity.

Will I ever be the same? How much do I have left? Who am I without sport? 

“I love my daughter,” she said last year, “but I loved my life before as well.”

She kept running. Rowbury placed sixth in the 5000m at the 2019 USATF Outdoor Championships, racing on a lack of training due to the injury. She missed an Olympic or world championships team for the first time since 2007, when she graduated from Duke.

Then in November, she won the U.S. 5km title on the roads in New York City. Rowbury raced for the first time this year in July and is still in Europe, torn while spending three weeks away from Sienna and husband Pablo Solares, a former middle-distance runner from Mexico.

“I felt very strongly that I would never prioritize my career over my family and over my daughter,” she said. “My performance right now is testament to the fact that you can have a healthy, natural weaning process, and you can still compete at a very high level.”

Rowbury partly dismissed motherhood earlier in her career because she was afraid of potential consequences. In more recent years, runners including Rowbury, Montaño and Allyson Felix fought for maternity protection in the sport, such as with health insurance through USA Track and Field and in sponsor contracts.

“I don’t think that any woman should be told she needs to do something in order to compete as an athlete or to pursue her dreams,” Rowbury said.

(08/26/2020) Views: 452 ⚡AMP
by Yahoo Sports OlympicTalk
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision. ...

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Des Linden is considering a move to the trails

Linden says UTMB and Comrades are bucket-list races

The 2018 Boston Marathon champion and one of America’s most beloved distance runners is eyeing up some of the world’s most competitive trail races. While it’s far from a done deal, as she’s still got some unfinished business on the road, Des Linden wants to conquer both UTMB and the Comrades Marathon before her running days are over.

Linden told slowtwitch.com that ultra racing, specifically Comrades and UTMB are bucket list items for her. “I don’t spend too much time on the trails, to be honest, I think that’s why there’s so much intrigue. Exploring Chamonix and the Mont-Blanc region on foot and in a race atmosphere just looks pretty incredible.”

UTMB and the Comrades Marathon are two of the most competitive ultra races in the world. UTMB lasts several days and covers 171K, Comrades is a little shorter running either 87 and 90K depending on the year. Trail running is gaining popularity and as it does, more road runners will move from the marathon to even longer distances. (Side note: American distance legend Shalane Flanagan has also been seen doing some trail runs lately). It’ll be interesting to see, as more elite roadies make the move, if they can catch the best in the trail running business.

Jim Walmsley is a great example of a runner who has been successful at every running discipline – but his dominance lies on the trails. Walmsley made his road marathon debut at the 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trails. His run there was hyped as one of the most exciting storylines, with some going so far as to claim he had an outside shot at the Olympic team. Walmsley ran extremely well (a 2:15 on the insanely hilly Atlanta course is no small feat) to finish 22nd – a far cry from an Olympic berth, but an impressive debut nonetheless.

While Linden is looking to one day attempt a reverse-Walmsley, and it’ll be interested to watch her trajectory. She could help runners answer the age-old question of: do road results translate to the trails?

(08/16/2020) Views: 339 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Shalane Flanagan Adopts a newborn Baby Boy Jack Dean Edwards

She’s a four-time Olympian for Team USA, and now Shalane Flanagan is a mom.

The former track and field and marathon star announced she and husband Steve Edwards became parents after adopting a newborn son this week.

“By far, the greatest gift we have ever been given. Jack Dean Edwards,” she captioned an Instagram slideshow of the swaddled baby. “On April 28th, Steven and I welcomed Jack with full hearts and open arms into our family through adoption.

“I was not prepared for a love like this."

Jack arrived Thursday at 8:56 a.m., weighing 6 pounds 10 ounces, Flanagan wrote.

The couple previously fostered teenage sisters, and soon after began looking into adoption. Flanagan opened up about the process in a March 2019 article with Women’s Running, saying they had applied for an infant adoption but were also exploring foster adoption.

“There’s such a need and my heart goes out to these kids,” she said. “I feel like Steve and I are in such a fortunate position to be able to give kids care and a home. …

“We may adopt an infant. We may adopt toddlers. We don’t know, but we’re putting ourselves in a position for whatever kids are in need. It’s scary but exciting. It’s a totally different life, but it’ll be fun.”

Flanagan, a native of Marblehead, Massachusetts, who now lives in Portland, Oregon, made her Olympic debut in 2004 on the track, and four years later won a bronze medal that was later upgraded to silver in the 10,000-meter in Beijing. She switched to marathon after that, finishing 10th in London and sixth in Rio.

Along with Des Linden and Kara Goucher, Flanagan helped usher in a new generation of U.S. women’s marathoners, and in 2017 her win at the New York City Marathon ended a four-decade drought for U.S. women’s runners.

She retired from elite racing in October 2019 to pursue a career as a coach. NBC also hired her as an analyst.

Several fellow Team USA stars were quick to congratulate Flanagan on Instagram, including Goucher and Allyson Felix, both of whom are also mothers.

“Congrats Shalane!” Felix wrote. “So happy for you"

(05/01/2020) Views: 459 ⚡AMP
by Chros McDougall
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Des Linden will race the U.S. Olympic Trials and the Boston Marathon in 2020

Des Linden was undecided whether to race the Feb. 29 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials as recently as a month ago. But now Linden, the 2018 Boston Marathon winner, is not only committed to trials but also the April 20 Boston Marathon.

It would be, at 51 days, by far her shortest break between marathons, which has so far included 19 marathons dating to 2007. She’s 36 years old, and it may be her last Olympic cycle.

“I only have so many more chances at Boston. I love being there. Obviously, the Olympics [window] is closing down as well,” she said. “I like the trials and the competitive way we pick our team. I can’t imagine, at this point, watching either of those races and feeling like I had no effect on either outcome.”

If Linden does make the Olympic marathon team — by placing top three at trials in Atlanta — she would be in line to race four marathons over a little more than nine months when including last month’s New York City Marathon.

Ethiopian Lelisa Desisa and American Sara Hall ran the New York City Marathon on Nov. 3, 29 days and 35 days, respectively, after racing the world championships and Berlin Marathon. Neither finished New York, however.

This past August, when Linden committed to the New York City Marathon, she added that she might not race the trials. After her performance in New York — the top U.S. woman in sixth place — she decided she was ready for the trials-Boston double, which she had been considering since placing fifth at this past April’s Boston Marathon.

As far as how it will impact her trials build-up, Linden said her team will re-evaluate the process weekly. She hasn’t committed to a pre-trials half marathon.

“We’re obviously aware of what’s down the line, so we’re trying to get as much quality as we can without going too deep into the well,” she said. “It’s certainly going to be out there, but we’re trying to run well at both and not say, ‘This isn’t going well,’ and just train through it.”

Linden has been treating every marathon as if it could be her last. She has been incredibly consistent, placing no worse than eighth in her last 11 marathon starts dating to 2013.

Neither of Linden’s previous Olympic experiences was especially memorable. She dropped out of her first one in 2012 with a stress fracture in her femur. She was seventh in Rio, missing a medal by less than two minutes. The Kenyan-born gold and silver medalists were later busted for EPO and are serving lengthy doping bans.

“I don’t feel like I have anything to prove and anything unfinished,” at the Olympics, Linden said in August. “Quite frankly, the last experience is a hard sell to get back out there to try to compete for medals when you’re not even really sure what the field is all about. It’s a little bit difficult to be excited about that with the way we are about the [World Marathon] Majors. People investing in anti-doping have really been solving that problem [at the majors]. It’s a little tricky [at the Olympics], but certainly representing your country is special.”

Linden is the most experienced of a deep group of U.S. Olympic marathon hopefuls after the recent retirement of four-time Olympian Shalane Flanagan.

(12/17/2019) Views: 1,147 ⚡AMP
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2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

The 2020 US Olympic Trials for both men and women took place in Atlanta, Ga on Sunday Feb 29. Runners had to qualify by running certain standards beforehand. The trials are hosted by the Atlanta Track club. The course runs through the heart of Atlanta and past monuments from the 1996 Olympic Games Most countries around the world use a...

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Gwen Jorgensen announces move to track for 2020

The 2020 US. Olympic Marathon Trials on Feb. 29 were marked on Gwen Jorgensen’s calendar since her Nov. 2017 announcement that she was leaving the triathlon to pursue running full time in hopes of winning the 2020 Olympic gold medal in the marathon.

But now, less than three months out from the event, Jorgensen announced that she will not run the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials and instead focus on making the U.S. team for the Summer Games on the track in the 10,000 meters.

“It’s a multitude of emotions,” Jorgensen, 33, says. “I’m disappointed. At the same time, I’m also excited. I’m at a point where I’m running 70 miles per week and training is going well. I just know that if I went to the trials, running 70 miles per week, I’d be hoping that I made a team. That’s not what I want to do at an Olympic Trials.

I want to go in confident and knowing that I have the ability to make a team. My goals in the marathon aren’t changing. My timeline is.”

Heel surgery forced Jorgensen, who converted to distance running after winning the Rio Olympic triathlon, to pass up the Feb. 29 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials and focus on the track and field trials in June in the 10,000m and, probably, the 5000m.

She made the decision after recent talks with her coach, Jerry Schumacher, following a difficult recovery from late May surgery to correct Haglund’s deformity.

“I could get bent out of shape and sad about it, but at the end of the day, I’m excited because I know this path that I’m on will not only be a successful route, but I also think it will lead to success long term in the marathon," she says. "I’m confident in my abilities on the track."

Jorgensen’s goal was a lofty one from the onset. No American woman has won gold in the marathon at the Olympics since Joan Benoit Samuelson’s victory in the 1984 inaugural running. The 2020 trials, where the top three finishers qualify for Tokyo, are shaping up to be one of the most competitive races of the year, as American women’s distance running is at its highest level with recent World Marathon Major victories by Shalane Flanagan at the 2017 New York City Marathon and Desiree Linden at the 2018 Boston Marathon.

Even after giving birth to her son Stanley in Aug. 2017, Jorgensen could have returned to the triathlon and arguably been a contender to become the first woman to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals. But she and her family decided to move to Portland, Ore., and once settled there, Jorgensen signed a professional running contract with Nike and joined the Bowerman Track Club.

Jorgensen worked her way to the marathon by racing on the track in the spring of 2018 and ran a few U.S.A. Track and Field road race championships. She says her training went well, nailing all but one workout in 12 weeks. But in the three days before she was set to compete in the Chicago Marathon, Jorgesen battled a fever and underestimated the effects of running while sick. She finished in a disappointing 2:36:23 in her professional marathon debut.

Now fully healed, healthy and recovered, Jorgensen is working her way back to train with her Bowerman teammates. Her day sometimes includes a hill sprints, a track workout, pelvic floor therapist treatment, physical therapy exercises for her achilles and then an evening workout before returning to her family.

“I think it’s important not to be afraid when you need to admit that your goal needs to change,” Jorgensen says. “I’m not going to say that I’m failing because I still want to have my marathon goals, but the timeline has changed. It’s still important to have big goals and to share those goals. It holds everyone accountable.”

(12/05/2019) Views: 950 ⚡AMP
by Chris Cahvez
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2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

The 2020 US Olympic Trials for both men and women took place in Atlanta, Ga on Sunday Feb 29. Runners had to qualify by running certain standards beforehand. The trials are hosted by the Atlanta Track club. The course runs through the heart of Atlanta and past monuments from the 1996 Olympic Games Most countries around the world use a...

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Shalane Flanagan Was Not Surprised by Alberto Salazar’s Ban

One of America’s greatest marathoners has retired to become a coach and a television commentator, and she is speaking her mind about her sport and her top sponsor.

Shalane Flanagan, the four-time Olympian and winner of the New York City Marathon in 2017, called it quits on her running career in October — sort of.

Flanagan, who is 38 and has long trained with Nike’s Bowerman Track Club, is moving into coaching and television work. She will serve as the color analyst for ABC’s telecast of the New York City Marathon on Sunday, and once that is done she will return to Oregon to help coach the elite women who call themselves the “Bowerman Babes.”

There are few women coaching at the highest levels of running, even for female runners, and fewer who can still keep up with the athletes they train. That’s the kind of coach Flanagan plans to be as she moves into the next phase of her career.

“My dream is to become a personal pacer,” she said in a phone interview last week, during which she discussed her decision to hang up her racing shoes, Nike’s connection to the latest performance-enhancing drug scandal and whether, as an analyst, she will criticize runners she is coaching.

So now you are becoming a coach officially. Is that a role you have been playing unofficially for a while?

"Prior to the last year I had always looked at myself as the elder on the team. A little motherly, maybe a bit bossy and mentoring to younger athletes. But ever since I finished my last race in New York a year ago I have known I wanted to coach, and I’ve been observing and watching more with a coaching eye than as a teammate. The last year has been a kind of informal internship," she said.

Why aren’t there more female coaches at the highest levels in track and field?

"I never thought of it as a gender position or role, but having in the last year been in an environment and the arena of the coaching world, it has opened my eyes. At the U.S. championships, there are very few women coaches in the warm-up area, or even agents. It definitely feels strange."

Your sponsor, Nike, which funds your training group, worked closely with Alberto Salazar, who has been suspended from the sport for actions he took as coach of the Nike Oregon Project. Has the company done enough to make you feel that other Nike athletes will not be tainted by all of this?

"They are currently looking at the situation. I am guessing that they are a bit shocked to some degree and they are going to evaluate how they format these teams in the future. It’s a big liability for them. It’s very complicated. I’m proud of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency and the efforts they put forth and their commitment to clean sport."

Were you surprised by what you read in the reports about the Oregon Project, that Nike’s chief executive, Mark Parker (who has since left that post), was kept in the loop through emails about experiments with performance-enhancing drugs?

"We train on the Nike campus, but we very much stick to our neck of the woods. We kind of quarantine ourselves. Once Jerry Schumacher broke off with Alberto in 2009, we’ve been very separated. That said, I’m surprised but not surprised by the situation that unfolded. I trained with Kara Goucher sometimes and I was privy to what she was going through, so I am not completely ignorant on the subject. As for Mark Parker’s interactions, I was unaware of those. (Goucher was one of the main whistle-blowers in the USADA investigation.)"

Will you run with the women you are coaching?

"I would love to pace someone like Shelby Houlihan to a 5K record attempt, or really any of our athletes. Being able to do that for them, that’s my motivation."

Did you ever have a coach like that?

"Jerry used to be able to hop in during some sessions. It made it so much more fun. When I was preparing for Boston I would make multiple trips and train on the course for multiple days. Jerry would get on and do workouts with me. I loved so much to have my coach give his body to help me attain my goals.

So what does Jerry say about you commenting on television about runners in your training group?

"Jerry would prefer I not commentate when I have athletes in races. I’m not sure I will change his mind on that aspect."

(11/11/2019) Views: 703 ⚡AMP
by Matthew Futterman
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Four-time champion Mary Keitany is on a mission as she targets to win the New York Marathon for a fifth time on Sunday

The all-women marathon World Record holder won the NYC Marathon for the fourth Time last year after beating compatriot Vivian Cheruiyot and USA’s Shalane Flanagan, who came in second and third, respectively, by more than three minutes. Keitany previously won the race in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

In an exclusive interview with Nation Sport, Keitany said she has prepared well and is ready to fight for the title.

“I’m ready to go to New York and fight to defend my title again for the fifth time having won it four times. I know it’s not easy, but I’m certain the three months training I have undergone will enable me to do my best,” said Keitany.

“I’m happy that I have won the race (New York Marathon) several times and again if I’m to win this time it will turn out historical. To me and my family, winning this marathon the fifth time will be a great achievement.”

For the fourth time in five years, Keitany sped past more than 50,000 runners to win the women’s race with a time of 2 hours, 22 minutes, and 48 seconds last year. This made her time the second fastest in the history of the New York race. Kenya's Margaret Okayo holds the course record of 2:22:31 set in 2003.

Keitany joined Grete Waitz as the only woman to win the New York City Marathon four times or more. She will have to win a few more times to beat Waitz’s record, though. Between 1978 and 1988, the Norwegian runner won the marathon nine times.

Keitany said that the secret to prosperity requires athletes to train well and athletes must learn to persevere because nothing comes easy. She said one should have a dream and must be focused. They ought to have an attitude and should be mentally focused so as to fulfil their goals.

For Keitany, discipline and perseverance are key in her sports career. "You must put God first for you to prosper," she said.

The athlete said training may not be easy but athletes must be disciplined if they are to succeed in sports. Some promising athletes have destroyed their careers due to indiscipline.

Keitany set the women-only marathon record when she won the London Marathon in 2017. She has also held records for best half marathon time and best 10-mile time. She also has titles from London Marathon she won in 2012, 2016, and 2017.

(10/30/2019) Views: 863 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

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

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Shalane Flanagan has announced her retiring from professional running

With happy tears I announce today that I am retiring from professional running. From 2004 to 2019 I’ve given everything that’s within me to this sport and wow it’s been an incredible ride! I’ve broken bones, torn tendons, and lost too many toenails to count. I've experienced otherworldly highs and abysmal lows. I've loved (and learned from) it all.

Over the last 15 years I found out what I was capable of, and it was more than I ever dreamed possible.  Now that all is said and done, I am most proud of the consistently high level of running I produced year after year. No matter what I accomplished the year before, it never got any easier. Each season, each race was hard, so hard. But this I know to be true: hard things are wonderful, beautiful, and give meaning to life.  I’ve loved having an intense sense of purpose.  For 15 years I've woken up every day knowing I was exactly where I needed to be.

The feeling of pressing the threshold of my mental and physical limits has been bliss. I've gone to bed with a giant tired smile on my face and woken up with the same smile.  My obsession to put one foot in front of the other, as quickly as I can, has given me so much joy.

However, I have felt my North Star shifting, my passion and purpose is no longer about MY running; it's more and more about those around me.  All I’ve ever known, in my approach to anything, is going ALL IN.

So I’m carrying this to coaching. I want to be consumed with serving others the way I have been consumed with being the best athlete I can be.

I am privileged to announce I am now a professional coach of the Nike Bowerman Track Club.  This amazing opportunity in front of me, to give back to the sport, that gave me so much, is not lost on me.  I’ve pinched myself numerous times to make sure this is real. I am well aware that retirement for professional athletes can be an extremely hard transition. I am lucky, as I know already, that coaching will bring me as much joy and heartache that my own running career gave me.

I believe we are meant to inspire one another, we are meant to learn from one another. Sharing everything I’ve learned about and from running is what I’m meant to do now.I would like to thank: The 5 coaches who guided me throughout my career, Michael Whittlesey and Dennis Craddock (2004-2005), John Cook (2006-2008), Jerry Schumacher (2009-2019), and Pascal Dobert (2009-2019). Each man was instrumental in developing me into the best version of myself.

Jerry, Pascal and I will continue to work together in this next chapter and I couldn’t be more grateful.

Jerry has been my life coach, running coach and now will mentor me towards my next goal of becoming a world-class coach myself. I’m thankful for his unending belief in me.

My family and husband who have traveled the world supporting my running and understanding the sacrifices I needed to make. Their unconditional love is what fueled my training.My longtime friend, Elyse Kopecky who taught me to love cooking and indulge in nourishing food. Run Fast. Eat Slow. has been a gift to my running and to the thousands of athletes.

My teammates, and all the women I've trained with, for pushing me daily, and the endless smiles and miles. They include: Erin Donahue, Shannon Rowbury, Kara Goucher, Lisa Uhl, Emily Infeld, Amy Cragg, Colleen Quigley, Courtney Frerichs, Shelby Houlihan, Betsy Saina, Marielle Hall, Gwen Jorgensen, Kate Grace.

My sponsor Nike for believing in me since 2004 and for continuing to support my new dream as a professional coach.  I hope I made myself a better person by running. I hope I made those around me better. I hope I made my competition better. I hope I left the sport better because I was a part of it.

My personal motto through out my career has been to make decisions that leave me with “no regrets”.....but to be honest, I have one.  I regret I can’t do it all over again.

(10/21/2019) Views: 1,054 ⚡AMP
by Shalane Flanagan
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TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

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

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Eliud Kipchoge is now the first man to run 26.2 miles in less than two hours as he clocked 1:59:40 today

Eliud Kipchoge from Kenya and the current world record holder for the marathon made history today by running 26.2 miles in 1:59:40.  His splits were amazing.  His fastest kilometer was 2:48 and his slowest was 2:52.  At least 19 of his splits were 2:50 on the dot. 

He hit the first 5k in 14:13 with his pacemakers right out front.  He looked relaxed and smooth.  Just watching him gave me goosebumps because he makes it look so easy.

The course in Vienna, Austria was 90% flat and straight. The temperature was just under 50F and the humidity 90 percent at the start which was a little higher than expected.  But it did not have any visual effects on Eliud.  

Eliud said before the start, “I don’t know where the limits are, but I would like to go there.”

I did a poll on Facebook before the start and all but one person thought he could run sub two hours.  One thought he could run 1:55 but most thought 1:59 something.

No, this was not a race.  It is not a world record because he was the only one racing, he had drinks handed to him from a bike and he had pacers coming in and out. It was a challenge to see if it was possible for a man to run a sub two hour marathon.  And he did it.  

In watching the event it was distracting to always see the pacemakers out front until the end but they certainly did their job. It was almost like watching a new sport as the pacemakers came in and got in their formation.  

I would have rather have watched Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele battle it out in Berlin where I think one of them would have run sub 2:01 but I did enjoy watching this challenge.  Eliud made it look so easy to run 14:10 5k’s.  

Eliud was under an hour at the half way point and finished  very strong in 1:59:40.  The pacemakers helped Eliud run 2:50 kilometers on the dot from 33k to 40k.  

Then with about 500 meters to go the pacemakers let Kipchoge go and he sprinted to the finish line.    Shalane Flanagan who was one of the hosts of the You Tube broadcast said, “No way in my life time did I ever think I would see a man run a sub two hour marathon.”

We have now seen a man run a marathon in under two hours.  His wife Grace and their three children watched him race for the first time.  They were all smiles as was Eliud. 

Eliud Kipchoge is an Olympic Champion, world record holder clocking 2:01:39 at the Berlin Marathon last September and now the first man to cover 26.2 miles in under two hours.  

(10/11/2019) Views: 1,167 ⚡AMP
by Bob Anderson
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INEOS 1:59 Challenge

INEOS 1:59 Challenge

Mankind have constantly sought to reach new frontiers and to achieve the impossible. From Edmund Hillary reaching the summit of Mount Everest to Roger Bannister’s four-minute mile to Felix Baumgartner jumping from space we have frequently redefined the limits of human achievement and broken new barriers previously seen as simply impossible. After the four-minute mile and the ten second 100m...

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Shalane Flanagan went for her first post-surgery run–12 minutes of run-walking on an anti-gravity treadmill

It’s been four months since 2017 NYC Marathon winner and 2018 third-place finisher Shalane Flanagan had surgery to repair her severely damaged right patellar tendon, and yesterday she happily posted a photo of her first post-surgery run–on a Woodway Boost anti-gravity treadmill–on Instagram.

“I still know how to run!” Flanagan posted. She reports that she ran two-and-ones (two minutes running, one minute walking) for 12 “bliss-filled” minutes at 70 to 77 per cent of her bodyweight. “I was soooooooo excited for today that I actually laid out my running clothes last night (just like I would do before the first day of school when I was a kid).”

Flanagan’s surgery was a patellar tendon allograft and chondroplasty, meaning tissue from a recently deceased person (actually from the hamstring of a 21-year-old) was used to repair her patellar tendon, which was then anchored to her tibia with three screws.

The tissue donor’s family was willing to have her know their identity, and Flanagan reached out to thank them with a personal letter. “I’m moved beyond words knowing what a gift I’ve been given,” she posted.

Anti-gravity treadmills are commonly used to aid in athlete rehabilitation. Air pressure technology allows the athlete to reduce impact while running, and they can transition gradually to supporting their full body weight. According to her posts, Flanagan has been walking and doing strengthening workouts in the gym for some time. Looks like it’s too soon to say when we might see her back on the racing circuit.

In 2017 Flanagan became the first American woman to win the TCS New York City Marathon in 40 years. In 2018 she finished third behind Mary Keitany and Vivian Cheruiyot of Kenya.

Runners of all varieties can draw some lessons from Flanagan’s experience: one, don’t take your ability to run for granted. Two, don’t give in to discouragement if you’re injured and can’t run. 

(08/14/2019) Views: 1,167 ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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One step at the time. Your are such an inspiration for so many of us. It has to have been tough for you these last few months. You will get through this... 8/14 9:47 am


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Desiree Linden is going to be running the New York City Marathon before Boston

Des Linden says she’s running every marathon as if it’s her last. She could have said goodbye on April 15, finishing fifth in defense of her Boston Marathon title, blowing kisses to the crowd after denying regurgitation.

Instead, Linden plans to race the New York City Marathon for the third time and second year in a row on Nov. 3.

The two-time U.S. Olympian placed fifth in 2014 and sixth in 2018 at the five-borough event. She decided to sign up again after a post-Boston break and a weeklong Hong Kong vacation.

“Just been logging a lot of miles deciding what would be next and got the itch to start doing workouts and getting the longer stuff,” Linden said. “It’s the biggest stage in the world, so it’s hard to pass up on that opportunity. It’s a no-brainer. I like tough, technical courses.”

Linden, 36, could become the oldest female U.S. Olympic marathoner since 2004 next year. But, taking the one-at-a-time mantra that Shalane Flanagan adopted late in her career, she’s not (yet) committing to the Olympic trials on Feb. 29.

Neither of Linden’s previous Olympic experiences was especially memorable. She dropped out of her first Olympic marathon in 2012 with a stress fracture in her femur. She was seventh in Rio, missing a medal by less than two minutes. The Kenyan-born gold and silver medalists were later busted for EPO and are serving lengthy doping bans.

“I don’t feel like I have anything to prove and anything unfinished,” at the Olympics, Linden said. “Quite frankly, the last experience is a hard sell to get back out there to try to compete for medals when you’re not even really sure what the field is all about. It’s a little bit difficult to be excited about that with the way we are about the [World Marathon] Majors. People investing in anti-doping have really been solving that problem [at the majors]. It’s a little tricky [at the Olympics], but certainly representing your country is special.”

Linden did acknowledge that a technical, undulating course like New York could provide ideal preparation for the Olympic trials course in Atlanta that, like New York, is not expected to produce fast times. Linden also dismissed it being too tight of a turnaround from the latest of the fall major marathons to a trials in the winter.

Linden did not race fall marathons in 2011 or 2015 ahead of Olympic trials, though the trials race was earlier each of those years. If she does race at next year’s trials, it would mark her shortest break between marathons of what would be her 20 times contesting the distance.

“There’s ample time to recover and get back at it,” she said. “I don’t need to go and run a fast time or get a qualifier or anything. It was just about picking the race that was going to get me excited.”

(08/06/2019) Views: 1,020 ⚡AMP
by Nick Zaccardi
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TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

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

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Eight life lessons from one of America's best marathoners - Shalane Flanagan on How to Achieve Peak Performance

In 2017, on November 5, I watched the end of the New York City Marathon on television. I got chills as Shalane Flanagan crossed the finish line, becoming the first American woman to win the race in 40 years. I could only imagine the years of dedication, passion, and resolve behind that extraordinary moment.

(Editor Note - Shalane almost did not run the 2018 New York City Marathon because of pain in her patella tendons.  But she was glad she did run placing third.  Since then she has had surgery and her recovery is coming along well.  Brad spoke with Shalane in 2018 and her advice then is still very timely.)

Trust Your Training

“In the 24 hours prior to the New York race, I had a general calmness about me. I was equipped with fitness and a level of training I’d never achieved before. I didn’t feel worried because I knew deep down inside how prepared I was. I’ve always tried to get so fit that I can’t make a bad decision in my racing because my fitness literally won’t allow me to—it will just carry me. I guess what I’m saying is that the more confident you are in your training, the less nervous you’ll be on race day.”

Motivation Is Contagious

“My job is enhanced 100 percent if I’m surrounded by other like-minded athletes who are going to challenge me and hold me accountable to my goals. My teammates inspire me, and I thrive off their energy. I can literally look to my right and left and say to myself, ‘This woman is such a badass.’ I don’t think I’d still be running if not for my training partners. These women support me through both highs and lows.”

Age Is Only a Number

“Even though I’m 36, I decided to come back after New York because I finally felt the accumulation of all the work I’d put in over the past two-plus decades paying off. It’s like I was finally getting to the good stuff, coming around to the type of endurance runner I’d always wanted to be. I feel like I have more to give, and I’m excited by that. I’m in a major competition with myself. I want to explore my limits, to see what I’m fully capable of—and I think I still have a few special performances in me.”

Drive from Within

“When I was a kid, running gave me something to be good at, to build confidence and fit in. I liked the attention that came along with it. However, that’s not at all why I run now. I feel confident in who I am, and I run because I love it and want to pursue self-mastery.”

Skip the Diet

“People think eating healthy is bland and boring, but I want to crush that notion. You can eat exceptionally well, and it can be awesome and enhance your life. There is lots of disordered eating with young women. I want to show that, yes, you should try to eat very healthy, but you also need fat and you should derive enjoyment from great-tasting food. I’m not about diets or counting calories or measuring nutrients. That’s too obsessive.”

Don’t Overcomplicate Recovery

“Recovery, to me, means sleeping and eating well. If I’m not feeling recovered, I’ll sleep and eat more, and that usually does the trick. Maybe I’ll get a massage, but that’s it. I don’t use any fancy gadgets or anything like that.”

Go All In

“I like to go all in on one extreme for a period of time and then shift to another extreme. For me, this means going all in on running, and then taking a vacation where I go all in on things like family and other pursuits. It’s too hard—physically and mentally—to try to do everything at once.”

Have an Outlet

“Though I just said I like to go all in, I do think it’s important for all serious athletes to have a nonathletic outlet, too. For me, that’s cooking, which is like my therapy. It calms and relaxes me. I was an art major in school, so perhaps cooking is how I express that.”

(07/22/2019) Views: 985 ⚡AMP
by Brad Stulberg
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Everything you need to know about 2020 US Olympic Marathon trials

The selection policy for the 2020 US Olympic marathon team, cloudy for months after the IAAF announced in March that the qualification process for the 2020 Olympic Games is changing, is quietly beginning to take shape. For those wishing to preserve the best thing about the US Olympic Marathon Trials — top three across the line make the team — there was some good news, but there remains work to be done. After speaking with sources at the IAAF and USATF, here’s where we stand eight months from the Olympic Trials, which will be held in Atlanta on February 29.

The first bit of news trickled out on June 25 in the IAAF Athlete Representative Newsletter, which was promptly shared by agent Dan Lilot on Twitter. The update? After lobbying from USATF, the IAAF Council approved that “national Tokyo 2020 Olympic selection championship/trials in the men’s and/or women’s marathon, held in 2019 or 2020, may be granted Gold Label status if requested by the Member Federations and if the race can meet the Gold Label requirement for number of Gold Label athletes.”

Normally, Gold Label status is awarded to a marathon based on the previous year’s field. So to attain Gold Label status in 2020, the 2019 edition of the race would have to have six men and six women with Gold Label status that year, or seven athletes if it’s a single-gender race (Gold Label status is awarded to an athlete based on their world ranking at the end of the previous year; a marathoner has to be ranked in the world’s top 200 to earn Gold Label status). The 2019 edition of the US Olympic Marathon Trials would normally be the 2019 USATF Marathon Championships, but USATF isn’t holding a marathon championship this year.

So what the IAAF is saying is that USATF doesn’t have to worry about the field at the 2019 USATF Marathon Championships; as long as the Trials has enough Gold Label athletes, it can be granted Gold Label status.

This is good news for American women. Remember, an athlete automatically achieves the Olympic standard by finishing in the top five at a Gold Label marathon. And the women’s race at the US Olympic Trials should have no problem hitting the minimum Gold Label requirements; 11 American women had Gold Label status in 2019, and as of the most recent world rankings, 10 are on track to earn it in 2020. That means that on the women’s side, the Olympic Trials will be able to use the “top three make the team” model. (Also note that Japan, which is holding its first Olympic marathon trials in September, will easily meet the criteria on the men’s and women’s side).

That may not sound like a huge deal, considering nine American women already have the Olympic standard. But consider two women who do not have the standard: Amy Cragg and Shalane Flanagan, both members of the 2016 Olympic team. If it’s a bad weather day on the hilly Atlanta course, it’s not out of the question that third place could be slower than the Olympic time standard of 2:29:30 (Flanagan finished third at the ’16 Trials in 2:29:19). Achieving Gold Label status puts any of those worries to bed. That’s a win for USATF.

On the men’s side, USATF still has some work to do. Only one American man, Galen Rupp, qualified for Gold Label status in the marathon in 2019. And right now, Rupp is the only American man on track to earn it again in 2020 (Scott Fauble and Jared Ward are just outside, at #205 and #210 in the current world rankings).

That means that, based on the criteria the IAAF announced on June 25, there’s no way that the men’s race at the Olympic Trials will qualify for Gold Label status. And the men are the ones who need it: Fauble and Ward are the only Americans with the Olympic standard, and the time standard of 2:11:30 could be tough to hit on the day in Atlanta.

(07/09/2019) Views: 1,182 ⚡AMP
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The standards are tough but the US is running the trials in weather most similar to Tokyo. 7/10 9:54 pm


2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

The 2020 US Olympic Trials for both men and women took place in Atlanta, Ga on Sunday Feb 29. Runners had to qualify by running certain standards beforehand. The trials are hosted by the Atlanta Track club. The course runs through the heart of Atlanta and past monuments from the 1996 Olympic Games Most countries around the world use a...

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Fancy Chemutai wins BAA 10k women’s race and sets course record

A course record fell to the wayside at the 2019 B.A.A. 10K, presented by Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Fancy Chemutai of Kenya set a new women’s course record of 30:36. 

Presenting sponsor Brigham and Women’s Hospital was represented by 550 runners, who have raised a combined $250,000 through today’s event.

 Chemutai earned breakaway wins thanks to tactical moves made early in her race. After crossing the halfway mark in 15:25, Chemutai began to leave the rest of the women’s field behind, pulling away as she made her way towards Kenmore Square.

Splitting 8K in 24:33, Chemutai knew she was on course record pace and buckled down for the final minutes of racing. At that point, she had nearly a 25-second lead on countrywoman Brillian Kipkoech and was on pace to shatter Shalane Flanagan’s 30:52 course best.

“I saw it was coming, that the course record was coming,” she said. When asked if that motivated her, she smiled and said, “yeah, sure!”

Triumphantly crossing the finish in 30:36, Chemutai established a new course record. The time also ranks tied for second fastest in the world this year.

“I enjoy being in Boston and enjoyed to win. It was very hot. It was hot,” said Chemutai of her Boston road racing debut. “I was going for the course record, it was in my mind.”

Kipkoech placed second in 31:04, with 2015 Boston Marathon champion Caroline Rotich taking third in 31:58. Top American honors went to Aliphine Tuliamuk, eighth place in 32:27.

The men’s open race was a fierce battle between Kenyans David Bett, Daniel Chebii, and Stephen Sambu, alongside Tanzania’s Joseph Panga. With opening miles of 4:34 and 4:33, the men’s leaders came through 5K in 14:16 and then began to push the pace even more. The quartet broke from the field, and clocked a 4:29 fourth mile, setting up for a final push down Commonwealth Ave. towards the finish.

It was Bett who had the best sprint of the day, making the turn onto Charles Street first and holding off the hard charging Chebii, who would finish a second behind, 28:08 to 29:09. Sambu rounded out the top three in 28:11, followed by Panga (28:14).

(06/23/2019) Views: 1,120 ⚡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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Shalane Flanagan who had surgery to repair a severely damaged patellar tendon in her right knee, will have several months' recovery ahead

2017 TCS New York City Marathon champion Shalane Flanagan had surgery to repair her right patellar tendon at the Steadman Clinic in Vail, Colorado yesterday, and described the situation in an Instagram post earlier today.

Torn patellar tendons typically do not heal on their own, and Flanagan posted on Monday that she would be traveling to Colorado for surgery.

She says her right patellar tendon (which connects the kneecap to the shinbone) was 75 per cent detached, leading the surgeon to graft a new tendon from a cadaver into Flanagan’s leg. She had injections of PRP (platelet-rich plasma) and bone marrow concentrate using bone marrow from her hip into both knees in an effort to speed healing. (PRP has been used with various other famous athletes such as Tiger Woods and Rafael Nadal, but there has been very little research on its efficacy.)

The surgery was done by Dr. Robert F. LaPrade, a complex orthopedic knee and sports medicine surgeon at The Steadman Clinic in Vail.

In 2017, Flanagan was the first American woman to win the New York Marathon in 40 years. Last year she finished in third place, behind Mary Keitany and Vivian Cheruiyot.

It was just after that that she revealed the extent of her knee pain. She will likely spend the next few months recovering from surgery.

(04/25/2019) Views: 1,179 ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

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

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Molly Huddle is set for her London Marathon debut

With her sights set on a return to London in a month, Elmira native Molly Huddle opened the outdoor track season with a runner-up finish in the 10,000 meters Friday night at the Stanford Invitational in Palo Alto, California.

Huddle, 34, posted a time of 30 minutes, 58.46 seconds at Stanford's Cobb Track and Angell Field. Emily Sisson won in 30:49.59. Sisson's time was the sixth-fastest ever for an American woman, with only Huddle and Shalane Flanagan having run quicker times.

Huddle's time was good enough to top the standard of 31:25 for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, though she would still need to qualify for Tokyo at next year's U.S. Trials. Huddle set the still-standing American record in the 10,000 at the 2016 Rio Olympics with a sixth-place time of 30:13.17.

After the meet, Huddle credited Sisson with helping to push her to a sub 31-minute race.

The meet included both professional and college runners. Allie Ostrander of Boise State took third in 32:06 in the 10K invitational race behind Sisson and Huddle.

Huddle is tuning up to compete in the London Marathon on April 28. It will be the fourth career marathon for Huddle, who finished fourth at the New York City Marathon in November after placing third in her marathon debut there in 2016. She ran the Boston Marathon last year. Sisson, who is Huddle's training parter, will make her marathon debut at London

(04/23/2019) Views: 1,249 ⚡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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Shalane Flanagan is going to have knee surgery to repair tears in her patellar tendons

2017 TCS New York City Marathon champion Shalane Flanagan, who finished third at the same event last year and confessed she almost did not run due to knee pain, posted yesterday that she will need surgery to repair tears in her patellar tendons.

Flanagan has not raced since the 2018 NYC marathon.

Flanagan, who grew up in Massachusetts, sat in the broadcast booth at Monday’s Boston Marathon for WBZ TV, the local CBS affiliate.

Last year, she finished a disappointing seventh, in extremely challenging weather conditions, with a time of 2:46:31, though there was no indication she was dealing with injury until the late fall.

The marathoner has had one of the strongest running careers in American distance history. She began as a high school star, continued her dominance at the University of North Carolina, and then went on to win Olympic and World Championships medals, and set American records which still stand today.

(04/22/2019) Views: 1,504 ⚡AMP
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TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

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

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Ethiopian Worknesh Degefa took command of the women's Boston Marathon race by the 7 mile mark and built it to over two minutes by half way and held on to win as America's Jordan Hasay finished third

Worknesh Degefa, 29, built up a commanding lead and even through Kenya's Edna Kiplagat closed the gap in the last few miles Degefa went on the win clocking 2:23:31 at the 2019 Boston Marathon.  Edna Kiplegat of Kenya started to break away from the rest of the chase pack at about 30K, trying to run the Ethiopian leader down, but the gap was too wide. Edna Kiplagat finished 44 seconds back clocking 2:24:14.  Jordan Hasasy from the US finished third clocking 2:25:20.    

Going into the race Degefa was ready to run well.  This January in Dubai, Worknesh Degefa set an Ethiopian national marathon record with her 2:17:41 second place finish. With that result she became the fourth fastest women’s marathoner in history.

Historically a half marathon specialist, Degefa’s top ten half marathon times (2013-2016) were run with an average time of 67:30. Her personal best was recorded at the 2016 Prague Half Marathon where she finished second in 66:14. She earned the silver medal at the 2015 All African Games Half Marathon. Degefa made her debut in the marathon in 2017 with a win at the Dubai Marathon, which she says is her proudest accomplishment. 

Degefa trains in the Oromia region of Ethiopia in Arsi and Assela because of its altitude and good weather for training. Her coach is Gemedu Dedefo. Her favorite foods are rice and pasta and she enjoys traveling in Europe.

Jordan Hasay finished third again this year.  Choosing Boston to make her debut in 2017, Jordan Hasay ran 2:23:00 to finish third. She set an American women’s debut record by three minutes and recorded the fourth fastest time ever run in the race by an American woman behind Shalane Flanagan, Desiree Linden and Joan Benoit Samuelson.

After Boston, Hasay ran the Bank of America Chicago Marathon and once again finished third, but improved her time to 2:20:57, becoming the second fastest American woman marathoner of all time. Besides making the podium in both the Boston and Chicago Marathons, Hasay set a half marathon personal best time of 67:55 with her sixth-place finish at the 2017 Prague Half Marathon.

During the race she set a 15K personal best of 48:21 and a 20K personal best of 64:32. She also won the 2017 U.S. national titles in the 20K, 10 Mile and 15K. Hasay was injured during 2018, but after surgery on her foot has made a complete recovery.

Hasay has been running since she was 12 years old and grew up in Arroyo Grande, California. 

Last year's winner Desiree Linden finished fifth clocking 2:27:00.  The weather was not a factor this year unlike last year.  

(04/15/2019) Views: 1,683 ⚡AMP
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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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America’s Amy Cragg is set to race the Prague Half on Saturday

Success for reigning USA Olympic Trials Marathon champion Amy Cragg did not come easily or quickly.  Indeed, the 35 year-old Nike Bowerman Track Club athlete nearly quit the sport before her true talent really showed through, eventually carrying her to Olympic Trials wins in both 2012 (at 10,000m) and 2016 (marathon), four USA titles, and a 2:21:42 marathon personal best.  It’s been a long, and sometimes bumpy, road.

“Definitely, I’ve made some mistakes along the way,” Cragg told Race Results Weekly in a telephone interview from Prague where she’ll be running the Sportisimo Prague International Half-Marathon on Saturday.  “I’ve learned from them and that’s kind of led me to here.  So, every once in a while I’ve looked back and I’m, like, I should have done this differently or this differently.  But, the reality is that I might not have ended up here.  I think I’m in a really good place.”

Working with coaches Jerry Schumacher and Pascal Dobert and Bowerman teammate Shalane Flanagan since the end of 2015, Cragg has blossomed into one of America’s best at 26.2 miles.  After winning the February, 2016, Marathon Trials on a brutally hot day in Los Angeles, she went on to finish ninth in the Olympic Games Marathon in Rio. 

She backed up that performance a year later with a thrilling, late-race charge at the 2017 IAAF World Championships marathon in London, taking the bronze medal (the first medal for a USA woman at those championships in the marathon since 1983), and only missing the silver by a fraction of a second. 

She recovered from her London race well, then ran the Tokyo Marathon in February, 2018, finishing third in an excellent 2:21:42.  That performance made her the fifth-fastest American of all time behind only Deena Kastor, Jordan Hasay, Flanagan and Joan Samuelson.

"I love where I’m at,” Cragg continued.  “I love my team and my coach.  Just living in Oregon, that’s been incredible.  I think overall, those rough moments, those times when I considered stopping have made me a stronger athlete.  I’m glad I went through that.  It’s hard to say that.  Those times, I think I really learned a lot from them.”

Cragg is at an unusual juncture in her career.  She hasn’t run a marathon in over a year.  She built-up for Chicago last October, but ended up withdrawing from the race after she and her coaches felt that her training hadn’t brought her to the fitness she would need to run her best.  They had intense discussions, she said, about what to do next.

“When I pulled out of Chicago last year the big talk was, OK, what do we really want to get out of the next two years?” Cragg said.  “I’ll probably be in the sport two years and reassess.  The big thing is making another Olympic team and trying to perform well in Tokyo.  Everything we do from here on out, that’s the goal to make that team and we’ve been working back from there.”

Cragg decided not to do a spring marathon this year.  Instead, she worked with her Bowerman teammates Shelby Houlihan, Marielle Hall, Courtney Frerichs, and Karissa Schweizer to get ready for the USATF Cross Country Championships last February where she finished fifth in her first national cross country championships in nine years. 

A month later she ran the special Road to Gold test event in Atlanta where she was able to run on the 2020 Olympic Trials course.  Uncontested, she covered the 8-mile route in 43:23 and won by a minute.  She told Race Results Weekly that the Atlanta race was essentially the kick-off of her Trials training.

“I felt pretty good,” Cragg said.  “I think I’m in a good position and I’m pretty excited to get into the bigger miles.  For me, that makes a huge difference.  I feel ready to start that, which is exciting for me.”

Saturday’s race in Prague is the next logical step on Cragg’s long journey to Atlanta next February for the marathon trials and Tokyo for the Olympics next August.  On Prague’s flat, record-eligible course Cragg wants to race hard with the goal of improving herself as a marathoner.

(04/05/2019) Views: 1,378 ⚡AMP
by David Monti
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Prague Half Marathon

Prague Half Marathon

Start the RunCzech season with one of the biggest running events in the Central Europe! Every year the Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon excites spectators with performances of elite athletes breaking records. Enjoy a course with incomparable scenery in the heart of historic Prague that follows along the Vltava river and crisscrosses five beautiful bridges. Take in majestic views of the...

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Emily Sisson became the third-fastest American in history with her 30:49 10,000m performance at Stanford on Friday

With her 30:49 10,000m on Friday night at Stanford, 27-year-old Emily Sisson is behind only Molly Huddle and Shalane Flanagan in American history. Sisson will next tackle her marathon debut on Apr. 28 in London.

Marathon training is already showing a lot of promise for 26.2 newcomer Emily Sisson. With just under a month remaining until her debut.

The race was executed with teamwork from Sisson, 27, and her training partner Huddle, 34, who are both coached by Ray Treacy. The runners switched off leading every few laps for the majority of the race in Stanford, California, which set the tone for a pace aimed to break the 2020 Olympic qualifying standard.

Both runners competed at the 2017 IAAF World Track and Field Championships together and are currently in the middle of training to compete at the London Marathon in April, which made the return to the track all the more exciting.

(04/01/2019) Views: 1,207 ⚡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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John Hancock today announced its Elite Athlete Ambassador Team for the 2019 Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon champions Meb Keflezighi, Tatyana McFadden, Bill Rodgers, Joan Benoit Samuelson, Greg Meyer and Uta Pippig will join Shalane Flanagan, Ryan Hall, Deena Kastor, Becca Pizzi and Team Hoyt as ambassadors for this year’s race.

“As Patriots’ Day nears, we welcome our 2019 Elite Ambassador Team for the Boston Marathon,” said John Hancock Chief Marketing Officer Barbara Goose.

“Through their mentorship and inclusiveness, these accomplished athletes inspire runners of all ages and abilities during race week and throughout the year at John Hancock sponsored events.

The team has become an integral part of our community.”

Ambassadors will cheer on the 30,000 participants racing from Hopkinton to Boston on Patriots’ Day and attend media, community and race week events, including making appearances at the Runner’s Seminar at the Expo, surprise “meet and greets” near the finish line, and at the John Hancock Elite Athlete press conference on April 12 at 10 a.m. at the Fairmont Copley.

(03/28/2019) Views: 1,167 ⚡AMP
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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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2012 Olympic 10,000m silver medalist Sally Kipyego, will be running her first marathon as an American at Boston

2012 Olympic 10,000m silver medalist Sally Kipyego, who will be running her first marathon as an American.

We break down the elite fields below, but we start with some analysis of Kipyego, who is returning to racing in 2019 after missing most of the past two years.

When John Hancock announced the 2019 US elite field for Boston last month, we noted that there is currently a “Studly Six” in US marathoning — Amy Cragg, Jordan Hasay, Molly Huddle, Shalane Flanagan, Des Linden, and Sally Kipyego (who has never before run for the US). At the time, only two of those women (Hasay and Linden) were entered in Boston, but the updated field released today included Kipyego’s name, which spices things up quite a bit.

Kipyego, 33, became a US citizen in January 2017 but has only raced once since. She took 2017 off to have a baby, giving birth to daughter Emma in July 2017, but her return to training took longer than anticipated and she did not race again until June 2018, where she was just 10th at the BAA 10K in 34:32. Kipyego was slated to run the NYC Marathon last fall, but was forced to withdraw a month before the race, citing malaria and pneumonia.

But Kipyego remains a monster talent, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see her on the plane to Tokyo with Team USA in 2020. At Texas Tech, she became the only woman to win three NCAA XC titles, and after turning pro, she put together a track career more successful than any of her US contemporaries: PRs of 14:30 (four seconds faster than the American record) and 30:26 (only Flanagan and Huddle have run faster among Americans) for 5k and 10k on the track, and a pair of global 10k silvers at the 2011 Worlds and 2012 Olympics. She’s also run 68:31 in the half marathon, and in her only career marathon finish she was 2nd in NYC in 2016, one spot ahead of Huddle.

The question, of course, is whether Kipyego can return to that form after a long layoff. We will learn a lot about her over the next three months, and that begins next weekend in Houston, where Kipyego is entered in the half marathon. Should Kipyego run well there, there will be a lot of hype for Boston.

(01/12/2019) Views: 867 ⚡AMP
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Adrianne Haslet a Boston bombing amputee was struck by car

Adrianne Haslet, a professional dancer who lost her left leg in the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013, was in serious condition in hospital after being struck by a car on Boston’s Commonwealth Avenue on Saturday. Haslet posted the information on Instagram, it was picked up by the Associated Press and retweeted by Haslet’s friend Shalane Flanagan, third-place finisher in last year’s New York City Marathon.

Hasket was in a crosswalk at the time. She says she was “thrown into the air and landed, crushing the left side of my body… I’m completely broken. More surgery to come.”

According to the AP report, the driver claimed he was turning and did not see Haslet because it was dark out and raining, and because she was wearing dark clothing. He was charged for failing to stop for a pedestrian in a crosswalk.

Haslet was in the crowd near the finish line in 2013 when she was injured in the second blast. She had shrapnel wounds in her right leg, and her left leg had to be amputated below the knee. A highly ranked competitive ballroom dancer, Haslet was able to recover and return to dancing with her prosthetic leg, and in 2015 she performed a dance at the Boston marathon finish line. 

(01/07/2019) Views: 900 ⚡AMP
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It would be really neat to have real time tracking in a race says Desiree Linden

Desiree Linden became the first American woman to win the Boston Marathon in 33 years. On a cold and rainy day in Massachusetts, Linden didn’t have much belief that she could win the 122nd version of the race. She even slowed down early into the race to wait her teammate, Shalane Flanagan, so that they could both catch back up to the elite pack together.  The weather conditions were very bad and the Boston Globe called it “the worst weather in Boston Marathon history.” After Linden and Flanagan caught back up to the pack, a surprising thing happened. 35-years-old Linden who trains in Michigan, began to pull away. She would end up winning the marathon in 2:39:54.  Most recently Desiree was one of four Americans to finished in the top seven at the New York City Marathon.  The website Sport Techie spoke with Desiree about Data Versus Disconnection and other matters.  “Running is still a pure sport where you can go out with just your shoes and kind of disconnect for a long time, which is refreshing in today’s world,” says Desiree. “But then you can implement technology as you go and take as as much data as you want. The range is different for everyone.  It would be really neat to have real-time tracking in the race via a mechanism in clothes or shoes. They could give you splits during the race every 5k or so, and there could be something in the shoe that could real-time track runners so that people could see heart rate and cadence during the race. I think that’d add an interesting graphic during race broadcasts.” How about the Balance Between Innovation and Ability? “A lot of big companies (like NIKE) are attempting to break the two-hour marathon barrier,” she says, “and see the shoe as a place to really make that jump. There’s definitely a movement in shoe technology. I think there’s a lot of brands trying to catch up in that race.  The question is how much do you let it impact your sport? Is the shoe doing the work or is it still the athlete? It’ll be interesting to watch and see how governing bodies decide if and when technology is taking over the actual capacity of the runner.” (11/18/2018) Views: 1,010 ⚡AMP
by Jen Booton @ SportTechie.com
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Kenya's Mary Keitany pulled off her fourth New York City Marathon win crushing the field

Kenya's Mary Keitany opened up a lead after a 4:54 mile at the 20 mile mark.  The 36-year-old with a PR of 2:17:01 while winning the 2017 London Marathon was in control.  Mary won three consecutive TCS New York City Marathons from 2014 to 2016.  In 2016 her 3:34 margin of victory was the greatest in the women's race since 1980.  Last year she was runner-up to Shalane Flanagan clocking 2:27:54.  Today Shalane Flanagan was about a quarter mile back with six miles to go holding on to fifth place.  Molly Huddle (USA) was close behind.  At 35K Mary projected finish time was just 50 seconds off the course record.  The course record of 2:22:31 was set in 2003. Shalane Flanagan moved up to fourth at 35k with Molly in 5th.   Meanwhile Mary Keitany continued pulling further ahead clipping off 5:05 miles.  35-year-old Vivian Cheruiyot who won the 2018 London Marathon (2:18:31) upped her pace to 5:21/mile making a move on Ethiopian's Rahma Tusa who was second at 23 miles.  Mary crossed the finish line first clocking 2:22:48 crushing the field. Vivian Cheruityot was second in 2:26:02.  America’s Shalane Flanagan finished third in 2:26:22 and Molly Huddle was fourth in 2:26:44.  Rahma Tusa faded to fifth clocking 2:27:13.   2018 Boston marathon winner Desiree Linden placed 6th clocking 2:27:51.  Allie Kieffe (US) places 7th clocking 2:28:12.   (11/04/2018) Views: 1,494 ⚡AMP
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Only two American woman have won the New York City Marathon, Miki Gorman was the first in 1977.

Miki Gorman was the first woman to finish the New York City Marathon in 1977, and it took 40 years until another American woman took the title. Miki Gorman was sitting alone at a corner table of a Magic Pan restaurant in Manhattan on Oct. 23, 1976, when her food arrived: not one, but two large crepes stuffed with mushroom and spinach souffle. A couple sitting nearby gawked at her. Gorman, at 5 feet tall or so, weighed only 90 pounds, and the plates of food covered her table. “I’m running the New York City Marathon tomorrow!” she told them. “And I’m going to win.” And so she did, the first woman to cross the finish line the next day. Even more, she won again the following year. No other American woman would take the title for the next four decades. “We’ve gone so long without winning, I can’t believe it,” Gorman told The Washington Post in 2004, long after her retirement in 1982. “My win was a lifetime ago.” Gorman was not around to see Shalane Flanagan’s 2017 victory; she died on Sept. 19, 2015, at 80, in Bellingham, Wash. The cause was metastasized lung cancer, her daughter, Danielle Nagel, said. Despite Gorman’s accomplishments, news of her death was not widely reported at the time. No word of it reached The New York Times. If it had, readers would have learned of record-breaking achievements that landed her in several halls of fame. One feat, in 1978, was a world best for a woman in the half marathon, at 1:15:58. She also won the Boston Marathon in the women’s category in 1974 and 1977, the latter victory coming, remarkably, the same year that she won in New York. She is the only woman known to have won both races twice. “She ran everything, from track races and really quick stuff all the way to these 100-mile races,” said George Hirsch, chairman of New York Road Runners. “There’s no one that I know of to this day who has that kind of a range and excelled in them all.” (11/02/2018) Views: 971 ⚡AMP
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America’s Molly Huddle just might be the one to beat at this year’s New York City Marathon

Last year Shalane Flanagan became the first American woman in 40 years to win the New York City Marathon. Desiree Linden followed with a victory in April at the Boston Marathon, the first American woman to win in 33 years. Those achievements motivate Molly Huddle, who finished third at the 2016 NYC Marathon in her debut after a successful middle-distance career. "We have a very talented group of women marathoners," Huddle said. The 34-year-old from upstate New York is among that group. At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Huddle broke Flanagan's 10,000-meter American record from the 2008 Beijing Games. In January, Huddle broke Deena Kastor's 2006 American record at the Houston Half Marathon. Kastor, who won bronze in the marathon at the 2004 Athens Olympics, watched Huddle surpass her record in Texas. "Some of the other American women already have the accolades under their belt," Kastor said. "Molly is coming in a little more hungry. So I think we'll see something special out of her on Sunday." Huddle recently trained for two months in Arizona in the high altitude of Flagstaff and Scottsdale. She lives and trains in Providence, Rhode Island, where her longtime coach Ray Treacy is the track coach at Providence College.  The 5-foot-4 Huddle called it a "confidence boost" to finish on the podium in her first marathon. Defending champion Flanagan and Linden are in the field Sunday, along with Kenyans Mary Keitany and Vivian Cheruiyot. Last year, Flanagan brought it home to a cheering crowd against a fading Keitany. "She really captivated everybody watching, the two million people on the streets, those of us glued to our televisions or here at the finish line to welcome her at Central Park," Kastor said. "It was an extraordinary performance." Kastor thinks Huddle has a good chance on Sunday. Huddle aims to make the U.S. team for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. "Molly has such a great range and she's pushing it into the marathon," said Kastor.  "She could really make the team in whatever event she chooses — 5K, 10K and marathon." Huddle attributes the surge of American women in the marathon to watching the likes of Kastor, Flanagan and others perform at international levels.  She says "once you see it is possible" it helps "shift your subconscious." "It's raised the bar," Huddle said. "It's more encouraging than anything."  (11/01/2018) Views: 1,169 ⚡AMP
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Can Shalane Flanagan do it again two years in a row at the New York Marathon

Last year at the New York Marathon, Shalane Flanagan became the first American woman to win in 40 years, clocking 2:26:53. On Sunday, the 37 year-old will once again face three-time champion Mary Keitany who she dethroned from the top podium spot, along with London Marathon champion Vivian Cheruiyot and Boston Marathon champion Des Linden.  Flanagan has a personal best of 2:21:14, while Kenya’s Keitany clocked a women’s only world record of 2:17:01 to win the 2017 edition of the London Marathon.  A couple of days ago Shalane posted this on FB. "Who is your biggest fan? I say, be your own biggest fan.  Self belief is powerful."  (11/01/2018) Views: 1,096 ⚡AMP
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Emily Sisson wins Reebok Boston 10K in record time but course was 380 meters short

Update: When we first reported this story it was thought that an American Record was set today in Boston as reported by the Boston Globe.  However, the course was 380 meters short, somehow the cones got moved just past the 5k mark. Most likely she still would have run sub 32. Emily Sisson separated herself from the competition early, at the Reebok Boston 10K for Women Monday afternoon. The 26-year-old from Rhode Island pulled away from Buze Diriba of Ethiopia at the 3-mile mark and held on to her lead down the stretch to claim victory in 30:39 — a comfortable 33 seconds ahead of the second-place Diriba. The time at first was thought to be an American record breaking the record set by Shalane Flanagan (30:52) in 2016 in the same event. But the course was short and the race director is trying to find out why cones were moved...The win is Sisson’s second in three years, as she also won in 2016 in 31:46. She becomes the first repeat winner since Huddle, who won the event four times, including three straight from 2008-10. Diriba’s time of 31:12 also broke the benchmark set by Huddle but was not good enough to beat Sisson. Formerly known as the Tufts Health Plan 10K for Women, the race is the largest all-woman running event in New England and has been a Columbus Day staple in Boston since 1977. Running through the Back Bay and into Cambridge, competitors make their way along the Charles River before finishing on Charles Street between the Public Garden and Boston Common. Other finishers: Diriba, Erin Clark of Arizona (32:19), Dylan Hassett of Rhode Island (32:28), and Holly Rees of the United Kingdom (32:46) rounded out the top five finishers in the open division.   (10/08/2018) Views: 1,619 ⚡AMP
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Gwen Jorgensen added to the 2018 Chicago Marathon field

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon announced today that defending champion Galen Rupp and American superstars Jordan Hasay, Amy Cragg and Laura Thweatt will be joined by a strong field of American runners at the 41st annual Bank of America Chicago Marathon. Gwen Jorgensen joins one of the deepest American women’s fields in the history of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. Hasay currently ranks second on the list of all-time American marathoners with her 2:20:57 run at last year’s Chicago Marathon. Her time was the fastest American time ever run on U.S. soil. Cragg moved up to the fifth spot in U.S. history earlier this year with her 2:21:42 performance in Tokyo, and Thweatt claimed the ninth spot in London last year after she finished in 2:25:38. The last time three American women finished in the top five in Chicago was 1994, and the last time U.S. women claimed the top two spots was 1992. That could all change in 2018. Jorgensen’s potential in the marathon remains unknown. She debuted at the New York City Marathon just nine weeks after she won gold in Rio in the triathlon. Given her lack of marathon-specific training, she impressed with a 14th-place finish and 2:41:01 time. Jorgensen grew into a legend as a triathlete: in addition to her gold medal (the only Olympic gold in the triathlon in U.S. history), she also won two world titles and an unprecedented 17 ITU World Triathlon Series races. She took most of 2017 off to welcome her first child, and since making the leap into a full-time professional running career, she won the 2018 Stanford Invitational 10,000m in 31:55, she finished fifth in the Peachtree road race, she finished seventh in the 10,000m at the USATF championships, and she finished fourth in her half marathon debut at the U.S. Half Marathon Championships in 1:10:58. Jorgensen trains with Cragg and Shalane Flanagan as part of Nike’s Bowerman Track Club. (08/27/2018) Views: 1,280 ⚡AMP
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Five-time U.S. Olympian Bernard Lagat will Make his Marathon Debut in New York City

Five-time U.S. Olympian Bernard Lagat will make his long-awaited marathon debut at this year’s New York City Marathon. At 43 years old, Lagat is remarkably still one of the top U.S. distance runners. He most recently represented the United States at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in March and claimed the U.S. 10K title in July. If he continues racing at the elite level, there may be a chance for Lagat to try and make a sixth U.S. Olympic team in 2020. For now, he’s solely focused on his 26.2-mile debut and possibly making a run at Meb Keflezighi’s U.S. Masters record of 2:12:20. The women’s field for the New York City Marathon is absolutely loaded with the defending champion Shalane Flanagan, Boston Marathon champion Des Linden, London Marathon champion Vivian Cheruiyot and three-time New York champion Mary Keitany. The men’s field already includes last year’s champion 25-year-old Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya. (08/23/2018) Views: 1,198 ⚡AMP
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Molly Huddle is going to run the New York City Marathon again

Elmira native Molly Huddle is part of a world-class elite women's field scheduled to compete in the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon. The list of women's runners also includes three-time race champion Mary Keitany, defending champion Shalane Flanagan, 2018 London Marathon winner Vivian Cheruiyot and 2018 Boston Marathon winner Des Linden. The race is scheduled for Nov. 4. Huddle and several other runners were announced Tuesday. Flanagan and Linden had been previously announced as competitors. This will be the third career marathon for Huddle, who finished third in her marathon debut at the NYC Marathon in 2016, posting a time of 2 hours, 28 minutes, 13 seconds. "Running a marathon is always a special experience, but I’m really excited to line up with such a great group of American women in New York this year," Huddle said Tuesday in a press release from race organizer New York Road Runners. (08/22/2018) Views: 1,091 ⚡AMP
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Three-time champion Mary Keitany of Kenya wants to reclaim her crown this year at the TCS New York City Marathon

Mary Keitany and Virgin Money London Marathon champion Vivian Cheruiyot are joining previously announced defending champion Shalane Flanagan and Boston Marathon champion Des Linden in star-studded field at the TCS New York City Marathon on Sunday, November 4.  “With Mary, Vivian, Shalane, Des, Tatyana, and Manuela, this year’s TCS New York City Marathon is stacked with some of the most competitive women’s professional athlete fields ever to compete in New York,” said Peter Ciaccia, president of events for NYRR and race director of the TCS New York City Marathon. “This is the best group of American women marathoners since the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials, and along with Mary and Vivian, the competition will be fierce.” (08/21/2018) Views: 1,100 ⚡AMP
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Shalane Flanagan has been toying with the idea of retirement, but her retirement will have to wait until after this year's New York City Marathon

Shalane Flanagan has been toying with the idea of retirement for several years. But retirement will have to wait until after this year’s New York City Marathon.

She was supposed to retire after last year’s New York City Marathon, where she became the first American woman to win the title in four decades.

Since then, Flanagan faced heartbreak at this year’s Boston Marathon, where she finished in a disappointing seventh place under difficult conditions. Flanagan had hoped to win the race in front of a hometown crowd, as she’s from Marblehead, Massachusetts. Many thought Boston could be her last marathoner ever.

Now she’s announced a return to the New York City Marathon this fall. "When I experienced winning New York last year, it was like when you're sitting on your couch and finally something happens that you didn't realize would happen and it excites you,"

Flanagan said. "But this was my real life! It was the outcome of always wanting it and not knowing if I was going to get it. And suddenly everything I'd worked for was validated. I got it." Flanagan currently trains with the Bowerman Track Club in Beaverton, Oregon.   

The New York City Marathon goes on Sunday November 4th, 2018.

(08/13/2018) Views: 1,783 ⚡AMP
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Boston Marathon Champ Des Linden will Run 2018 TCS New York City Marathon

The New York Road Runners announced 2018 Boston Marathon champion and two-time U.S. Olympian Des Linden will run the 2018 New York City Marathon on Sunday, Nov. 4.

In April, Linden, 34, became the first American woman in 33 years to win the Boston Marathon despite battling rainy and cold conditions. Last year's New York City Marathon was won by Shalane Flanagan, who became the first female American champion in the race in 40 years.

Flanagan, 36, contemplated retirement after her win but decided to run the 2018 Boston Marathon, where she finished sixth. Flanagan has yet to commit to a fall marathon.

Linden is looking to become the first woman to win the Boston Marathon and New York City Marathon in the same year since Norway's Ingrid Kristainsen in 1989.

(06/27/2018) Views: 1,817 ⚡AMP
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Shalane Flanagan and Michelob Ultra have teamed up to offer coaching to 95 runners running New York

If you’re already signed up for the TCS New York City Marathon this year, there’s one coach who may be your best bet at snagging a personal best: Shalane Flanagan. The 2017 champion is teaming up with Michelob Ultra to offer 95 runners the chance to train with her this fall. To enter, runners (21+) are invited to tell their story via JoinTeamUltra.com about how their love for beer and running motivates them to the finish line. Open to entries starting today until July 2, Michelob Ultra will “evaluate the stories and select 95 individuals that best embody the ethos of living fit and fun.” Because this is a nationwide contest, members of Team Ultra will be using a dedicated online social hub and training platform to interact with each other and Coach Shalane until race day. Shortly before the marathon, Flanagan and Michelob Ultra will meet the team in-person for a training run and happy hour drinks post-race. Flanagan syas, "I will be helping 95 beer-loving runners as part of Team Ultra and getting them a chance to run The TCS New York City Marathon. I will be helping by giving advice and training motivation and training tips so that they can have the race of their lives and a really memorable experience."  (06/26/2018) Views: 1,376 ⚡AMP
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My Legs got so numb in Boston, it felt like I didn't have shorts on says Shalane

Shalane Flanagan posted this today, "That time I ran the Boston Marathon and my legs got so numb from the cold that it felt like I didn't have shorts on.  And apparently...it looked like I didn't have shorts."  Some of her fans comments: "But those muscles." "If my legs looked like that I probably wouldn't wear pants/shorts ever." “You needed ski pants that day." "Ha ha, at least you can laugh about it now! You lived to tell the tale! Superstar."  Shalane kept running and finished in 7th place. (04/27/2018) Views: 1,345 ⚡AMP
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Boston Marathon Champion, Desiree Linden is returning to Boston for BAA10K

The BAA announced today that 2018 Boston Marathon champion Desiree Linden will return to Boston for June's BAA10K, presented by Brigham Womens. You can join Des and some of the world's fastest runners as the BAA kicks off summer at this fun race through the Back Bay. This year's event will be held on Sunday, June 24, and will have a maximum field size of 10,000 entrants. The women's course record was set by Shalane Flanagan in 2016.  She clocked 30:52 which is also the American Record. (04/27/2018) Views: 1,360 ⚡AMP
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