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75 year-old, Jim Pearson has run at least a mile every day for 50 years and he won´t stop doing it

The lead story in The Seattle Times on Feb. 15, 1970, was headlined, “Nixon bans war toxins.” In sports, the banner trumpeted that the Seattle Pilots were dropping the price of their field box seats for 1970 from $6 to $4.50 – though it became a moot point when the Pilots moved to Milwaukee six weeks later.

One other event that day, however, went unnoted in the news. Jim Pearson, the cross-country coach at Ferndale High School, didn’t go for a run.

The world has changed in myriad ways in the ensuing half-century, but there has been one constant. Through rainstorms and blizzards, floods and Nor’westers, surgeries and illness, and now through a worldwide pandemic, Pearson has run every day since.

That’s 50 years, 40 days and counting for the 75-year-old Pearson, now hunkered down in Marysville. Hunkered, that is, except for his daily peregrination in Adidas, a welcome diversion in our shelter-in-place existence.

Put another way, it’s 18,304 straight days of running at least a mile, which is the minimum requirement for an officially recognized running streak (but Pearson, a former national record-holder at 50 miles, almost never runs that short a distance). Put yet another way, it’s 176,926 total miles, up to and including Pearson’s 2½-mile run on Friday.

It’s the second-longest active streak in the country, 266 days behind the 18,570 of 69-year-old Jon Sutherland of West Hills, Calif. Pearson says with mock indignation, “Every day I run, and I haven’t gained a day on him.”

But everyone else in the country, and probably the world, is behind these two ironmen, as compiled by the Streak Runners International Inc. and United States Running Streak Association, Inc. Their registry is all based on the honor system, but Pearson has 50 years-plus of log books and running diaries to back him up.

“I’ve always said the first 100 days are the hardest on this streak stuff,’’ said Pearson. “People say, ‘Oh, you’re amazing.’ No, I’m not. People who can do one year, that’s amazing. How do you run every day for a year? But once you’ve done that, it’s something you just do.”

Pearson is duly grateful that running is an activity that can be maintained through the coronavirus quarantining – with proper social distancing, of course. It’s just one of numerous challenges Pearson has faced to keep his streak alive since his summer coach with the Everett Elks track team, Keith Gilbertson Sr., implored Pearson to get more consistent with his running.

Running became a way of life in the Pearson family. All three of his children, two boys and a girl, put together run streaks that stretched into multiple years. Barbie, his wife, didn’t run, but she told Jim when they were married, “I won’t interfere with your running.”

 

(03/30/2020) ⚡AMP
by Larry Stone
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OTC Elite runners hoping for late-summer meets

The coronavirus pandemic has postponed the Tokyo Olympics for a year and put the 2020 track and field season on hold indefinitely.

That doesn’t necessarily mean the work has stopped for the athletes.

Several members of the Eugene-based Oregon Track Club Elite professional training group have continued to train, albeit with a modified schedule.

Gyms are closed, as are several local tracks, but the trails are still open, and OTC Elite’s team of middle distance and distance runners are taking advantage.

“Not much has changed for me fortunately,” said Ben Blankenship, a 2016 Olympian in the 1,500 meters. “It’s just going out there alone and being self-disciplined.”

Blankenship has been plotting his return to the Summer Games since his eighth-place finish four years ago in Rio de Janeiro.That didn’t change on Tuesday when the International Olympic Committee and the Japanese government agreed to move the Olympics to 2021.

“I was really ready to do something,” Blankenship said. “We were looking at some of those early (spring) Stanford meets to get ready. But now it’s kind of catch your breath and restart. It could almost be looked at as a bonus year, right? So what can you do this year as kind of a bonus?”

Blankenship wasn’t the only runner on OTC Elite gearing up for a spot on the starting line at the Summer Games. Among its 15 members, there are six Olympians, including marathoner Sally Kipyego, who had already qualified for Tokyo with her third-place finish at the women’s U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials last month in Atlanta.

USA Track & Field has not yet announced whether Kipyego, as well as former Oregon star and men’s marathon winner Galen Rupp, will be able to keep those qualifiers for the 2021 Games or if the marathon qualifier will have to be raced again. The top three finishers in both races in Atlanta qualified for Tokyo.

Also for OTC Elite, Francine Niyonsaba was the 2016 silver medalist in the women’s 800 for Burundi, Hassan Mead (U.S.) and Tom Farrell (Great Britain) were in the men’s 5,000 that year, and Nijel Amos won silver in the men’s 800 for Botswana in 2012 when he was just 18 years old.

Amos had his best season on the track last year since his success in London. He ran under 1:45 in all but one race, and twice broke 1:43, including his season-best of 1:41.89.

Amos wasn’t the only one who excelled in 2019.

Hanna Green is coming off a breakout season as she made her first World Outdoor Championship team for the United States in the women’s 800 after running 1:58.19 for a second-place finish at the U.S. Outdoor Championships.

That success fueled high expectations coming into the 2020 Olympic season.

“Definitely disappointed because I felt like I had a pretty good start and was kind of rolling into another good season,” she said. “You just have to think positive right now because you don’t know what’s going to happen so you don’t want to get into a negative thought process where you’re just worrying. You have to go with the flow.”

Like Blankenship, Green is taking advantage of the trails to get her work in and try and maintain some fitness.

“We’ve definitely stepped back in our training, just to be safe and so our immune systems aren’t being damaged by hard workouts,” Green said. “Once we know if or when there are going to be races we’ll start to build up again.”

The sooner the better, both Blankenship and Green said.

World Athletics said earlier this week it was still hoping to host several one-day meets later in the summer.

“If they could get in those later Diamond League meets that would be awesome, or any meet in general,” Green said. “You just have to stay ready for whatever’s next whenever that may be.”

(03/30/2020) ⚡AMP
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Coe says World Athletics Championships could move to 2022

The World Athletics Championships could be moved from next year to 2022 to accommodate the rearranged Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, according to World Athletics President Sebastian Coe.

Coe said today that his sport’s flagship Championships, due to take place in Oregon from August 6 to 15, could be moved from 2021 to give space to the Tokyo Games, which have been postponed for up to a year amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"Nobody saw this problem (with the virus)...so the flexibility here is very important," Coe told Japanese media in a teleconference.

Should the biennial Championships be postponed for a year, he said it would still be possible to "have a 2022 and 2023 Championships back to back," although he added that was a matter of speculation at this point.

Speaking in a later teleconference with African and European media, Coe accepted that a delay of a year could mean more Russian athletes taking part in the next Olympics and Paralympics as their federation seeks to restore faith in its operation following the long-standing doping scandal.

At the World Athletics Council meeting in Monaco earlier this month the world governing body decided to introduce a cap of 10 neutral Russian athletes competing in forthcoming major events, adding it was aimed at accelerating change in the Russian system.

But asked today, Coe responded: “I think that is something we would want to be discussing with our Task Force.

“But looking down the road, everybody is in a different landscape so that will have to be looked at.”

Asked if there might be an upside for the Oregon organisers to have an extra year to prepare – and if there would be a downside in staging the next World Championships a year ahead of the scheduled 2023 version in Budapest, Coe told insidethegames:

“Nothing has been decided yet, but no International Federation is likely to be comfortable holding its World Championships in the same year as an Olympics.

“If we were to hold the next World Championships in 2022, a year after the Games, you would have the next ones in 2023, and then be in the Olympic Games in 2024.

“You would have athletics centre stage for four consecutive years…I think we could live with that, and that athletes could live with that.

“But it is still a matter for consideration.”

Earlier this week, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach agreed to push back the Summer Olympic Games, with the IOC Board approving it on grounds of safeguarding the health and safety of athletes.

In a statement earlier this week, World Athletics said it was already working to “ensure that Oregon is able to host the World Athletics Championships on alternative dates, should that prove necessary.”

Coe, the chairman of the 2012 London Olympic Organising Committee, expressed his support for the decision to push back the Tokyo Olympics, saying, "It was not an easy decision," adding everyone did what they could do at every level.

"No decisions will be made until we see the Tokyo dates," Coe said from his home in London.

Asked his opinion on possibly holding the Tokyo Olympics outside the summer months, Coe said, "I don't want to speculate on that. Because the meeting, the conference call that took place with the IOC yesterday, had all the International Federations on board and we all agreed those conversations will remain private."

Some international sports federations have suggested holding the Games in spring as a means to avoid the sweltering Tokyo summer.

However Coe indicated the view World Athletics have on the spring/summer question when he responded to a suggestion by Spanish paper Marca that never in history have there been good track and field performances in April and May.

Coe responded with a single sentence: "I wouldn't disagree with you."

On the idea of moving the marathon back to the capital from Sapporo should the Olympics be held at a cooler time, which Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike endorsed, Coe also answered that it is "very early to start speculating."

Since concerns over uncertainty in the qualification status of athletes emerged following the announcement of the delay of the Olympics, Coe said in addressing the issue, "A large number of athletes are already qualified and if they are qualified, they remain qualified."

For athletes who have not qualified for the Olympic Games, "a fair process" will be provided, he said, stressing the importance of transparency in the process at the same time.

He added: "As of today, all athletes who have met the entry standards for their event will remain qualified for the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2021.”

(03/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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After coronavirus forces postponement of 2020 Tokyo Olympics, elite athletes share their sorrow

Former University of Oregon sprinter English Gardner was looking at the big picture when the news broke Tuesday that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics were being postponed for a year because of the worldwide coronavirus pandemic.

Gardner has a 2016 Olympic gold medal from the Team USA women’s 4x100 relay and big hopes for Tokyo.

But she fully supports the decision by the International Olympic Committee and Japanese organizers to postpone.

“I’m bigger than track and field,” Gardner said. “I’m part of the community. I’m a human being. I’m a sister. I’m a mother. I’m a girlfriend. I’m a godmother. As a whole world, we’re kind of going through it right now. It’s OK that the Games got postponed because this problem, this illness, this sickness is way bigger than Tokyo.”

Gardner is among the Olympic-level athletes and coaches who spoke to The Oregonian/OregonLive on Tuesday about the postponement. They shared varying mixtures of relief, resignation, disappointment and hope for the future.

Shortly after the decision about the Olympics became public, the TrackTown USA local organizing committee announced the U.S. Olympic trials for track and field scheduled for June at Hayward Field in Eugene also had been postponed.

In most of the country, athletes are living in various degrees of social isolation as state, regional and municipal governments try to slow the spread of the virus. In many cases it has affected their ability to train.

Maybe worse has been the uncertainty of not knowing what the future holds and watching major sporting events be canceled or postponed, one after another. It seemed only a matter of time before the Olympics became the next domino to fall.

“I wasn’t super surprised,” said Shelby Houlihan of the Portland-based Bowerman Track Club and reigning USA Track & Field outdoor women’s champion in the 1,500 and 5,000 meters. “I figured it was probably going to happen. But it still kind of sucks.

“Obviously, it was probably for the best because of the situation we’re in. Safety should definitely be the No. 1 priority. But it does suck because I was ready for this year.”

Pete Julian coaches a Nike-sponsored, Portland-based team of elite distance runners who have been gearing up for the Olympics.

Julian’s group includes, among others, U.S. mid-distance stars Donavan Brazier, the 2019 world outdoor champion in the 800 meters, and Craig Engels, German star Konstanze Klosterhalfen and former University of Oregon runner Jessica Hull of Australia.

“I don’t think any of them are happy about the Olympics getting moved,” Julian said. “I think a lot of them feel they’re ready to go and believe they can win medals. They’re sort of kicking the post. They want to race.”

But Julian agrees with the decision to postpone. His message to his runners is they can be better in 2021 than they are now. He believes the Olympics can be too.

“I think Tokyo is one of the few cities in the world that could pull this off without a hitch,” he said. “I don’t think most of us can even imagine the logistical nightmare that this is going to create, and what the IOC and Tokyo will have to work through. But they will be able to do it, and it will be amazing.”

Evan Jager of the Bowerman Track Club is the 2016 Olympic silver medalist in the men’s steeplechase. He said he had a strong winter of training and liked his positioning heading into the outdoor season. But he believes this step back can turn to be a bigger step forward.

“Postponing it a year and having the Olympics as that light at the end of the tunnel is going to be a very positive thing to look forward to,” Jager said. “We can come out of this crisis a year from now, and hopefully be healthy. The Olympics can be a celebration of getting out of these dark times.”

Marathoner Galen Rupp said he planned to keep training and keep perspective.

The former University of Oregon star won an Olympic silver medal in the men’s 10,000 meters in 2012 and a bronze in the marathon in 2016. He already had made the 2020 U.S. Olympic team by winning the marathon trials on Feb. 29 in Atlanta.

“The health, safety and well-being of the global population are of the utmost importance and beyond any sporting event,” Rupp said. “Already so many people have gotten sick or died and so many more have been greatly impacted by the coronavirus. We need to listen to the advice of health experts.”

Even if that means going dark in 2020 and waiting a year so the coronavirus can be contained.

Gardner, the former UO sprinter who lives in New Jersey, said training has become difficult because of quarantine containment regulations. She joked she has to get creative to do track workouts because of padlocked facilities.

“I’ve been hopping a lot of fences,” she said. “I’ve been working on my long jump and high jump approaches.”

But turning serious, she said she endorsed the quarantines and social-distancing rules as a way to keep vulnerable family members safe. She said the Olympic postponement would protect athletes and fans.

“I was mostly concerned that we would calm the virus down, we all would go to Tokyo and spur it back up again,” Gardner said.

She said it could hit athlete housing in Tokyo the way an outbreak of the norovirus struck at the 2017 World Outdoor Championships in London.

“We share common eating rooms,” she said. “We all share the same tracks, the same weight rooms, the same hotels. It would just be a matter of time before it spurred back up again.“

(03/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Oregon Live
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Dr. Anthony Fauci Is an Avid Runner, Even When He Works 19-Hour Days

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the 79-year-old longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is reportedly working 19 hours a day in the fight against the coronavirus. You’ve seen him; he’s the slight, bespectacled, plain-dealing Brooklynite at President Donald Trump's elbow during many recent press conferences.

Yet, while many Americans are hoarding toilet paper and cans of baked beans and contemplating whether or not a Mad Men marathon on Netflix counts as a workout, Fauci still finds time to hit the pavement for running workouts.

With his increased age and workload, Fauci has reportedly cut back his daily runs to 3.5 miles per day, as he told Yahoo! White House correspondent Alexander Nasaryan. But back when a younger Fauci was working a lighter, 15-hour day to contain the AIDS epidemic in the '80s and '90s, he would build a lunchtime seven-miler into his schedule, five or six days a week, to keep his weight down, get outside and relieve stress. His daily runs helped him to a personal-best 3 hours and 37 minutes in the 1984 Marine Corps Marathon. 

When he was in midst of the fight against HIV/AIDS, Dr. Fauci was known to run 7 miles daily.I just asked him if he still keeps to that exercise regimen.No, he says, noting that he is working 19 hour days to fight the coronavirus.He is down to 3.5 miles -- at the age of 79.

“I think the benefit for me is as a stress-reliever,” Fauci said in a 2016 interview. “I have a pretty high-stress job, so getting outside during the day and hearing the birds and smelling the grass is a very pleasing thing for me.” 

Fauci has advised six presidents on AIDs, Ebola, Zika, MERS, SARS, malaria, tuberculosis and many other domestic and global health issues. However, it’s a good bet his cortisol level has never been higher as he struggles to diplomatically disseminate hard facts without undercutting President Trump. 

“When you’re dealing with the White House, sometimes you have to say things one, two, three, four times, and then it happens,” he said in a recent interview with Science Magazine. “So, I’m going to keep pushing.”

At work, and on the road.

(03/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Lindsay Berra (Men’s Health)
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The 2020 Peachtree Road Race to happen as scheduled on July 4

As conditions in Georgia continue to change daily in light of the coronavirus pandemic, the Atlanta Track Club is planning for the 2020 Peachtree Road Race to happen as scheduled on July 4.

Registration opened March 15 and will continue until March 31, unless the field is not full when registration is set to close, according to Rich Kenah, executive director of Atlanta Track Club and race director of the AJC Peachtree Road Race.

"If we see significant weakness and down the road, we see the opportunity where the sky is brighening a bit, where the outlook is strong, and we see the opportunity to bring people into the conversation who otherwise have been in the past, we'll evaluate that," Kenah told FOX 5.

Kenah said 2020 registration numbers in the first few days were better than all other years past besides 2019, which was the 50th anniversary race. There has been "a little bit of a slowdown" over the last week, but overall he estimated the registration total as of Wednesday morning to be in the "tens of thousands of people."

"About 20 percent of those who enter the lottery during the registration period do so during the last 48 hours, so over those last couple days, we'll have a true indication of the appetite for Atlanta for this year's (Peachtree)," he said.

If the race is postponed, Kenah said participants will be able to transfer their registration to a new date or request a refund.

(03/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Kelly Price
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AJC Peachtree Road Race

AJC Peachtree Road Race

The AJC Peachtree Road Race, organized by the Atlanta Track Club, is the largest 10K in the world. In its 48th running, the AJC Peachtree Road Race has become a Fourth of July tradition for thousands of people throughout the metro Atlanta area and beyond. Come kick off your Fourth of July festivities with us! If you did not get...

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Western States 100 has been cancelled due to the war the world is in gaged in with the Cornavirus

The decision to cancel the 2020 Western States Endurance Run was a tough one.  In accordance with this decision, we are offering an entry spot for the 2021 race to all runners entered in this year’s race and a wait list spot on the 2021 wait list to all people on this year’s wait list.

The 2020 Memorial Day training runs are cancelled and all registrations for those events will roll over to the 2021 Memorial Day training runs. More details on entry and registration for 2021 events will be provided later.

We have made the decision to cancel after careful deliberation, knowing that our foremost responsibility is to ensure the health, safety, and well-being of our 2020 entrants, our volunteers, our broader running community, and society at large.

The current situation in the United States and throughout the world is one of disruption and uncertainty. We feel that moving forward with plans for a race in June is not aligned with what our government, medical experts, and society is asking us to do. While painful to do knowing the hopes and dreams that surround this event, we feel it is the responsible action to take in light of what is going on in the world around us.

(03/27/2020) ⚡AMP
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Western States 100

Western States 100

2020 race has been cancelled. The Western States ® 100-Mile Endurance Run is the world’s oldest and most prestigious 100-mile trail race. Starting in Squaw Valley, California near the site of the 1960 Winter Olympics and ending 100.2 miles later in Auburn, California, Western States, in the decades since its inception in 1974, has come to represent one of the...

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The Wanda Diamond League has today postponed three more meetings which had been scheduled to take place in May

An alternative calendar for the 2020 season is to be announced in due course.

Following the postponement of early-season events in Qatar and China last week, the series has decided to also suspend meetings in Stockholm (scheduled for 24 May), Naples/Rome (28 May) and Rabat (31 May). 

The decision was made in close consultation with all the relevant parties. The dynamic global spread of the COVID-19 disease, the travel restrictions expected to be in force for some time and above all concerns over athlete safety have made it impossible to stage the competitions as planned. 

The meeting organizers, the Wanda Diamond League and World Athletics remain committed to delivering a structured extensive season in 2020. The aim is to ensure that athletes can compete at the highest possible level this year, and that fans will be able to see their favorite stars in action, whenever the global health situation allows. 

New dates for Wanda Diamond League events will be announced in cooperation with the World Athletics Global Calendar Unit as soon as the extraordinary situation makes a reliable plan possible.

We are working intensively with all stakeholders (athletes, managers, broadcasters, sponsors, local authorities and federations) to develop a new calendar for a 2020 Wanda Diamond League season which best serves the interests of athletes and fans.

(03/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

World Athletics made official Thursday what long has been suspected, with international track & field’s governing body announcing the Prefontaine Classic has been postponed. No new date has been set. The Pre Classic, part of the Diamond League series of international meets featuring Olympic-level athletes, had been scheduled for June 6-7 at the new Hayward Field in Eugene. All Diamond...

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Boston resident Molly Seidel qualified for the Olympic marathon but she’s worried about what happens now

The trials was one of the best days of my life, Seidel said. “To potentially have that taken away is very stressful."

When Molly Seidel reflects on the day she qualified for the 2020 Summer Olympics, she’s reminded of a seemingly distant reality.

“Just thinking back to the huge number of crowds that were there and the hugs after the race,” recalled Seidel in a telephone interview Tuesday afternoon. “Hell, just sitting down at a restaurant afterward. We all went out to a bar that night, too, and shared drinks at the bar. It’s a completely different world than the one we’re in now.”

Less than a month ago, Seidel placed second in the US Olympic marathon trials to punch her ticket to Tokyo. The 25-year-old Boston resident finished the race, her first-ever marathon, with a time of 2:27:31, just eight seconds behind Aliphine Tuliamuk.

As the threat of the coronavirus escalated rapidly, and the list of postponed or canceled sporting events grew, Seidel started to consider the possibility more and more. Could the Olympics really go on as scheduled?

She wasn’t shocked when the postponement became official Tuesday.

“I just don’t think there is any way we could be planning for an Olympics four months from now, especially when the country is going through such a difficult time and the world is going through such a difficult time,” said Seidel. “It would have put a lot of athletes and spectators and just the general public in a lot of danger.”

While Seidel agrees with the International Olympic Committee’s decision, she is certainly disappointed. She’s also incredibly frustrated. The US Olympic & Paralympic Committee, Seidel says, has not been forthcoming with updates. The lack of communication leaves her worried about her status.

There has been some chatter about whether runners should have to re-qualify, given the extended period of time between the marathon trials, which took place Feb. 29, and the rescheduled Games, which do not yet have new dates.

Seidel is hopeful that won’t be the case.

“The trials was one of the best days of my life,” she said. “To potentially have that taken away is very stressful. I’m hoping that they honor the Olympic trials and keep their current marathon team, but we haven’t heard anything from USOC, USATF, from anybody. It’s been difficult getting the information that we need.”

Fellow marathoner Des Linden, who placed fourth in the trials, doesn’t foresee a re-qualification. Linden recently called Seidel to express her support.

“I haven’t heard anything from governing bodies, and I would imagine that they’re not even entertaining that idea,” Linden said. “I think it’s just kind of interesting talk right now, particularly with so much time on our hands.”

Amid the uncertainty, Seidel is still training. She frequently runs on the Esplanade and will soon ramp up her mileage after recovering from the trials. Her coach, who lives locally, is encouraging her to make the best of the extra year, especially considering the fact she’s participated in only one marathon.

Should road races resume this fall, Seidel is looking forward to gaining more experience at the distance.

In her free time, Seidel enjoys binging “Gilmore Girls,” reading, and practicing her banjo and ukulele. She no longer has a job or a roommate, as Tatte cut most of its staff amid the coronavirus outbreak and her sister moved back to their home state of Wisconsin for the time being. But Seidel’s doing her best to make due.

“It was so weird coming off that huge emotional high at the trials,” she said. “Now, it’s just like, ‘OK, back to quarantine.’”

(03/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Nicole Yang
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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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After postponement of 2020 Tokyo Olympics, elite athletes share sorrow, perspective

Former University of Oregon sprinter English Gardner was looking at the big picture when the news broke Tuesday that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics were being postponed for a year because of the worldwide coronavirus pandemic.

Gardner has a 2016 Olympic gold medal from the Team USA women’s 4x100 relay and big hopes for Tokyo.

But she fully supports the decision by the International Olympic Committee and Japanese organizers to postpone.

“I’m bigger than track and field,” Gardner said. “I’m part of the community. I’m a human being. I’m a sister. I’m a mother. I’m a girlfriend. I’m a godmother. As a whole world, we’re kind of going through it right now. It’s OK that the Games got postponed because this problem, this illness, this sickness is way bigger than Tokyo.”

Gardner is among the Olympic-level athletes and coaches who spoke to The Oregonian/OregonLive on Tuesday about the postponement. They shared varying mixtures of relief, resignation, disappointment and hope for the future.

Shortly after the decision about the Olympics became public, the TrackTown USA local organizing committee announced the U.S. Olympic trials for track and field scheduled for June at Hayward Field in Eugene also had been postponed.

In most of the country, athletes are living in various degrees of social isolation as state, regional and municipal governments try to slow the spread of the virus. In many cases it has affected their ability to train.

Maybe worse has been the uncertainty of not knowing what the future holds and watching major sporting events be canceled or postponed, one after another. It seemed only a matter of time before the Olympics became the next domino to fall.

“I wasn’t super surprised,” said Shelby Houlihan of the Portland-based Bowerman Track Club and reigning USA Track & Field outdoor women’s champion in the 1,500 and 5,000 meters. “I figured it was probably going to happen. But it still kind of sucks.

“Obviously, it was probably for the best because of the situation we’re in. Safety should definitely be the No. 1 priority. But it does suck because I was ready for this year.”

Marathoner Galen Rupp said he planned to keep training and keep perspective.

The former University of Oregon star won an Olympic silver medal in the men’s 10,000 meters in 2012 and a bronze in the marathon in 2016. He already had made the 2020 U.S. Olympic team by winning the marathon trials on Feb. 29 in Atlanta.

Evan Jager of the Bowerman Track Club is the 2016 Olympic silver medalist in the men’s steeplechase. He said he had a strong winter of training and liked his positioning heading into the outdoor season. But he believes this step back can turn to be a bigger step forward.

(03/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ken Goe
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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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Canadian cities start closing local trails

On Thursday morning, Toronto Mayor John Tory announced that all of the city’s parks and outdoor recreation centres would be closed, effective immediately. This announcement came only two days after Hamilton announced the closure of their conservation areas, which includes the Hamilton-to-Brantford Rail Trail, the Dofasco 2000 Trail and the Lafarge 2000 Trail–all popular running spots.

The closure of public parks, a home away from home for many runners right now, isn’t just happening in Ontario, it’s all across the country. In B.C., the provincial government closed 14 provincial parks yesterday because, as Global news reports,”not enough people are understanding the seriousness of the novel coronavirus pandemic.” In Ottawa, as of Monday evening at 9 p.m., Gatineau Park closed, again, due to public health risks.

In Alberta, the story is similar, with Banff National Park visitor rates soaring over the weekend and the park closing three days later.

While change is difficult for outdoor and exercise enthusiasts, in many cases local trails, paths and parks were becoming overrun with people. The COVID-19 outbreak has caused an obvious running boom. There are massive numbers of people jogging, running, speed walking and working out outside due to the national closure of non-essential businesses (which includes gyms). While Canadians are encouraged to stay active in healthy and safe ways, like running, the number of people hitting the trails was making it very hard to follow the public health guidelines while getting your mileage in.

With these preliminary closures (and certainly more will come), runners are encouraged to hit the treadmill if they have one, run in less-popular areas, and try their best to workout at home.

(03/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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Lewa Safari Marathon planned for June 27 has been cancelled for the first time in 20 years

The Chief Executive Officer of Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Mike Watson, on Thursday disclosed that the race organisers have been forced to cancel this year’s competition to help curb the spread of coronavirus pandemic.

The title sponsors of this year’s competition were Huawei Kenya and Safaricom PLC.

“Despite our great willingness to push on, having weighed all factors, we have come to the very difficult decision to cancel this year’s race,” Watson said in a statement, noting that on March 25, the Kenyan government announced 28 cases of Covid-19 in the country and banned all international flights effective from March 25. Also banned are public gatherings and sporting events.

“A significant number of the marathoners, whose contributions are key to the success of the event, are overseas runners from the UK and the USA. In light of the new travel restrictions and severity of the situation, they will be unable to participate,” said Watson, adding that the government has also issued a public declaration advising Kenyans to avoid all non-essential public gatherings.

“While we are sure all efforts are being made by the Kenyan government to contain the spread of the virus, it is paramount that we heed the presidential directive to avoid all non-essential public gatherings and play our part in flattening the curve until all of this is behind us,” Watson added.

(03/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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Safaricom Lewa Marathon

Safaricom Lewa Marathon

The first and most distinctive is that it is run on a wildlife conservancy, which is also a UNESCO world heritage site. The Lewa Wildlife Conservancy is home to a number of endangered and threatened species- and also a catalyst for community development for its neighboring communities. For the past 17 years, funds raised from the marathon have gone...

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The 14th annual Missoula Marathon is still on track for June 28, but race officials are monitoring changes in COVID-19 restrictions

Run Wild Missoula Race Director Tony Banovich, said with new information on the virus is coming in every day, and he and his staff are continuously evaluating how this will impact each aspect of the race.

The one change that has been made is there will no longer be a rate increase for those signing up after March 31.

Banovich said with the race approaching his team is meeting at the end of next week to make more definitive decisions on whether the race will go as scheduled, be postponed, or be canceled.

“It’s much more important that we do the correct things for the public, not only for our participants that are here, but our volunteers, you know everybody that’s involved," Banovich rold MTN News.

"We don’t want to create a bigger problem by bringing people here that we shouldn’t, so we’re really trying to be cognizant of that," he added.

Banovich sayd that if the race is rescheduled for later in the year, they’re looking at dates during the late summer or early fall months.

(03/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Russ Thomas
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Missoula Marathon

Missoula Marathon

Half and full marathon in Missoula, Montana, in the city they call "The Garden City." Amazing participation by the entire town and county. Front lawn hose squads cool down the runners en route. Lots of rest stations. The full marathon is a Boston qualifier. Runner's World rated the course as one of the best overall road races. ...

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Eliud Kipchoge says the IOC and the Japanese government made the right decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympic Games and move it to 2021

Marathon great Eliud Kipchoge, who was due to defend his Olympics marathon title in the 2020 Tokyo Games later this year, said the decision by the IOC and the Japanese Government was the right one as the world battles to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

"All in all a very wise decision to postpone the Olympics until 2021. I look forward to come back to Japan to defend my Olympic title next year and look forward to witness a wonderful event. I wish everybody good health in these challenging times," the world marathon record holder tweeted.

Kipchoge, who is in the Kenyan men's marathon team along side Boston and Chicago marathons champion Lawrence Cherono and World Championships marathon bronze medalist Amos Kipruto, won the 2016 Rio Olympics gold medal in 2 hours 8 minutes 44 seconds.

Kipchoge became the first man to run the full marathon in under two hours after his 1:59:40.2 feat during the Ineos Challenge in Vienna last year.

Olympics javelin silver medalist Julius Yego also took to his Instagram account to express his views over the postponement of the Games to 2021.

"It's been all fun and smiles and happiness in preparation for this year's Tokyo Olympics but then the unexpected came!#Covid-19!! Terrible and scaring respiratory disease! But it's all upon us to compete against our dear opponents, we together on this fight to overcome the world pandemic, see you next year in Tokyo at the very least, stay safe and stay home," said Yego.

(03/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Japheth Mutinda
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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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The Pittsburgh Marathon is Cancelled but Jeff Gleason and a small group of his buddies will be running their own marathon

COVID-19 might have put a stop to the Pittsburgh Marathon, but it didn't stop a group of Pittsburgh runners from planning their own. During the wee hours of the morning Friday, March 27, elite athlete Jeff Gleason and his running buddies will go the distance – running while the rest of Pittsburgh sleeps. 

His small team is nothing short of extraordinary: "Wayne Kurtz is our de facto race director -- he actually ran 30 full Ironmen over 30 straight days," says Gleason. I'll serve as co-pilot and Bill Thompson, ultra-runner extraordinaire, will be my wingman. He ran across the entire state of Tennessee for no particular reason."

When the alarm rings, they will lace up their running shoes and strap on head lamps. Starting somewhere between 1 and 2 a.m., they will track their miles by Garmin and finish long before the city wakes. And afterwards, they are planning to go to work.

Gleason is not a quitter. In addition to medaling in marathons, he has completed over 70 ultramarathons. His "never say die" attitude got him through four 135-mile crossings of the Mojave Desert in unbearable heat and Big Foot, an excruciating 200-mile race through mixed terrain across the Cascade Mountains in Washington State.

That perseverance also came into play a few years ago, when debilitating knee pain knocked Gleason off course. Several physicians told him knee replacement was necessary, and he would never run again. After searching high and low, he found Richard Berger, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon at Rush UniversityMedical Center, Chicago, who performs joint replacement without cutting muscles, ligaments or tendons. Because of this, the recovery is faster with less scar tissue build up. That means within months, athletes like Jeff can return to their sport. In fact, three months post-surgery, Jeff completed the Pittsburgh Half Marathon. In hindsight, he says, "I could have done the whole [26.2], but my wife would have killed me."

In addition to the Pittsburgh Marathon, Jeff was planning to complete his 30th 100-miler ultra in New Jersey—which was also cancelled. But even with no foreseeable races in his future, he found a silver lining. "Fortunately (or maybe not so fortunately)," says Gleason, "I have some friends who are crazy enough to run over 26 miles in the middle of the night."

Above all, Jeff is just happy to be running again—pain free. "There is a running God," he admits, "and his name is Dr. Berger." 

(03/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Jeff Gleason
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Dick's Sporting Good Pittsburgh Marathon

Dick's Sporting Good Pittsburgh Marathon

This race is your game - however you decide to play it. As a competitor. A fund raiser. An enthusiast. A veteran. A team player. It's whatever you want it to be. It's whatever you make it. It's YOUR game..... Run it. Play it. Own it. Love it. Runners will race on the North Shore of Pittsburgh, cross each of...

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Runners can compete in a virtual race at Cleveland Marathon

The 44th Rite-Aid Cleveland Marathon is canceled in physical form, though runners can compete in a "virtual race" or defer their participation to 2021 or 2022. 

If you've gotten used to running outside at a socially distant pace, this year's marathon will feel familiar.

Scheduled for May 16 and 17, the 44th Annual Rite-Aid Cleveland Marathon and the events surrounding it have been converted to a "virtual event" due to the COVID-19 epidemic, race organizers announced Wednesday.

Race participants may also defer their participation to the 2021 or 2022 races.“We love our runners, and we know that so many of them have been training hard for our race in May,” said Jack Staph, executive director of the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon.

“We share their disappointment and frustration. However, we know that this is the absolute right decision to protect the health and safety of our participants and the community at large, which is our No. 1 priority.”

While a postponement may have been expected, finding an alternate date in the fall proved difficult due to unknowns surrounding the Cleveland Browns schedule, which is released in April, and other events, the race said. 

Shirts, medals and duffel bags will still be mailed in June, and participants may log and submit their miles any time between April 15 and May 17 at the location of their choice.

Since you can pick your location, you can run the normal parade route, but we suggest running through — or at least training at — these three Northeast Ohio parks with great hike.

(03/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Dillon Stewart
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Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon

Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon

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

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Copenhagen Marathon 2020 has been cancelled due to Covid-19

The Copenhagen Marathon organizers issued this statement today.  "We regret to announce, that due to the grave situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the 41th edition of the Copenhagen Marathon, which was scheduled to take place on May 17, 2020, has been cancelled. At the same time, the Mini Marathon and the Breakfast Run in the Tivoli Gardens have also been cancelled, both of which events were scheduled to take place on the day before the marathon.

"While we acknowledge that the cancellation will cause great disappointment to everyone who have trained hard and long for it, based on the recent development of events not only in Denmark but worldwide, we no longer consider it possible nor responsible to go through with the event.

"All paying entrants will be offered to have their entry transferred to next year’s race, which will take place on May 16, 2021, or get a full refund of the entry fee paid.

"We hope that many of you will support the Copenhagen Marathon by choosing to have your entry transferred to next year’s event. At the same time, we kindly ask for your understanding that we need some time to prepare the technical and internal processes before we are able to send out further details to entrants and others affected by the cancellation.

"Please stay safe and take care of yourselves and your loved ones."

(03/25/2020) ⚡AMP
by Race Organizers
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Copenhagen Marathon

Copenhagen Marathon

The race is special in many ways But one thing is the course around almost every part of Copenhagen. The course goes to Frederiksberg which is a very beautiful part of the city. Theres a fantastic atmosphere in the city, and a lot of spectators along the route. The course is pretty fast, and the field of elite runners is...

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The 22nd Nagano Marathon was trying to make it work but in the end like so many other races they have cancelled their marathon for 2020

The Nagano Marathon was one of the few major races in world in April featured by My Best Runs that had not been cancelled or postponed.  "Like so many other races they tried to make it happen," says Bob Anderson, MBR director, "but in the end COVID 19 won the battle. Today the Marathon organizers posted the following message on their wesite."

"The Nagano Marathon Organizing Committee (composed of Japanese Olympic Committee, Japan Association of Athletics Federations, Nagano Prefecture, Nagano City and The Shinano Mainichi Shimbun / Co-host: NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation)/ Superintendence: Nagano Athletic Association) had the meeting on 25th March and has decide to cancel the 22nd Nagano Marathon planned to held in Nagano City on 19th April, 2020.

This is the decision to put utmost priority to safety and prevent spread of new-coronavirus (COVID-19) in the situation in which the end of the pandemic has not yet been seen.

The Nagano Marathon Organizing Committee has considered the measures to hold the race safely with carefully watching ever-changing world situation, cooperating with respective related organizations.

However, The Nagano Marathon Organizing Committee has thought the risk of infections cannot be excluded completely for this race in which approximately ten thousand runners will participate and there are many chances for runners, volunteers who support the race, staffs and spectators along the course to get together.

The numbers of runners for the 22nd Nagano Marathons are 10,743 runners for domestic general entry, 392 runners for foreign general entry, 30 runners for visually impaired person’s entry and 11,217 runners in total together with guest runners and corporate team’s runners.

The Nagano Marathon Organizing Committee is considering specific ways to address to the runners and will inform you at a later date.

Thank you very much for your understanding and kind cooperation for Nagano Marathon."

(03/25/2020) ⚡AMP
by Race Organizers
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NAGANO MARATHON

NAGANO MARATHON

The Nagano Olympic Commemorative Marathon is an annual marathon road race which takes place in mid-April in Nagano, Japan. It is an IAAF Bronze Label Road Race competition. The Nagano Marathon has races for both elite and amateur runners. It is named in honour of the 1998 Winter Olympics which were held in Nagano. The course has a point-to-point style...

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Entry registrations for the TCS World 10K Bengaluru run continue to be open, despite uncertainty over the status of the event in wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Entry registrations for the TCS World 10K Bengaluru run continue to be open, despite uncertainty over the status of the event in light of the prevailing coronavirus pandemic.

The official website continues to accept new registrations, with a clause stating that the entry fee is non-refundable. The entry fees are - Open 10K (₹1,500 - $20US), Majja Run (₹900 - $12US), Senior Citizens' Run (₹300 - $4US), Champions with Disability Run (₹300 - $4).  Fees being very reasonable compared to other countries.

The run - scheduled to be held here on May 17 - regularly features around 25,000 runners across categories. Event organisers are expected to announce a decision on the status of the run by the end of March.

The website carries an announcement that while the entry fee is non-refundable, in the event of postponement, the entrant can re-register for the rescheduled edition at no extra cost.

“We are cognisant of and are closely monitoring the developments relating to the spread of COVID-19 in India. We will be noting the updates and advice as may be given by the Central Government of India and the Government of Karnataka from time to time.

Entry fees paid are non-refundable. Where the Event is cancelled due to a Force Majeure occurrence, including but not limited to Act of God, outbreak of an epidemic or communicable disease or any incident beyond the control of the Event Promoter, a registered applicant shall have the option to reregister for the subsequent/ rescheduled edition of the TCS World 10K Bengaluru, without payment of additional fee,” the announcement reads.

Asked if it would be more prudent to close registrations, and offer refunds in the event of postponement, Vivek Singh, Joint MD of event organiser Procam International said, “These decisions were taken by the race committee. We have anyway received very few entries in the last 10 days. This is understandable, given the concerns over the coronavirus situation. We do not offer a refund in the event of postponement, but the registered entry can be used for the rescheduled edition at no extra cost.”

(03/25/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ashwin Achal in India
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TCS World 10K

TCS World 10K

The TCS World 10k Bengaluru has always excelled in ways beyond running. It has opened new doors for people to reach out to the less privileged of the society and encourages them to do their bit. The TCS World 10K event is the world’s richest 10 Km run and has seen participation from top elite athletes in the world. Mike...

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The Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon has confirmed their new date - September 6, 2020

This was just released by Run Czech:  "Following restrictive measures imposed by the Czech Government due to the spreading of coronavirus in the country and worldwide RunCzech has announced that the Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon (which is also a part of SuperHalfs running series) will not happen on 28 March 2020 as planned. The health of the participants is a priority now. 

In recent days, RunCzech management has been intensively discussing an alternative date of the race with everybody involved in the organisation of the race – City Hall of Prague, international organizations, television, the Czech Athletic Federation and further institutions, and have commonly found a new date replacing the March event. Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon 2020 is now scheduled to take place on Sunday morning, 6 September 2020. The time and the place of the start will be confirmed.

All runners registered for the race do not have to report or confirm their participation in the postponed race. All registrations will be automatically transferred to a new date (6 September 2020) together with the additional services such as t-shirts or medal engravings.

Those registered runners who may not be able to participate in the postponed race this year can change their valid entry ownership to another person or to defer their entry to the 2021 Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon (scheduled for 27 March 2021). Both options are possible to do without any additional cost until the end of July. 

Runners registered in SuperHalfs running series will receive additional communication.

Registered participants will receive further information and more details about the race by e-mail in the upcoming two weeks.

(03/25/2020) ⚡AMP
by Race organizers
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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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When would be a good time to hold the postponed Olympic Games in Tokyo?

Until now, the Summer Olympics had never been postponed. But on Tuesday, the International Olympic Committee and the Japanese organizers gave in to the inevitable amid the surging coronavirus pandemic and delayed the Tokyo Games for a year because of “the unprecedented and unpredictable spread of the outbreak.”

Cancellation was a nonstarter. The world’s athletes, who are the centerpiece of the event, would have had their dreams snatched away.

But the IOC, which desperately — and critics said foolishly — had stalled for more time, had no choice but to push the Olympics into next year.

There was no possible way that 11,000 athletes from more than 200 nations could safely convene and compete in Tokyo or any other major city in late July.

The question now is, when would be a prudent time to hold the Games of the XXXIInd Olympiad?

(03/25/2020) ⚡AMP
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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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Providence Marathon has been cancelled

This is from the organizers of the Providence Marathon which was set to go May 3.  "Dear Runners - Due to the concern surrounding the coronavirus, the CDC's recommendation of no events of 50-plus people for the next two months, and the government’s rolling mandate around no public gatherings, we've made the decision to cancel the Providence Marathon, Half Marathon, & 5K, originally scheduled for May 3, 2020.

"We understand how disappointing this is, and we still want to do the best we can for you. We're currently working hard with the venue and city officials to see if a fall postponement is possible, and expect a decision by early April, but we wanted to provide an update now so registered runners can adequately prepare.

"Please keep an eye on your inbox for upcoming email announcements regarding Providence Marathon updates. We'll also be sharing updates on social media. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at info@providencemarathon.com with any questions or concerns.

"On behalf of the Providence Marathon team, we thank you for your patience and understanding."

 

(03/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Race Organizers
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Providence Marathon

Providence Marathon

2020 race was cancelled. This exciting race day in Down City will host a marathon, half marathon, 5k and kids fun run. The Marathon will start at 7:30 a.m. Sunday in Downtown Providence, Rhode Island. The Half Marathon will start at 8:00 a.m. from the same location. The 5k will follow at 8:15 am and the kids race with take...

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The world athletics championships set for move due to postponed Olympics

The decision to postpone this summer's Olympic Games has been met with almost universal welcome and praise.

The Olympic Federation of Ireland (OFI) say the decision is the "correct" one under "difficult circumstances".

But the lifting of the XXXII Olympiad and plonking it down into the following summer comes with its own scheduling challenges.

The 2021 World Athletics Championships are due to be held in Eugene, Oregon from August 6 to 15.

Even if the Olympics doesn't stick to roughly the same timetable (July 24 to August 9), it will present a problem about how best to prepare for both prestigious track and field championships.

World Athletics seem open to whatever suggestion is thrown at them regarding potential rescheduling.

In a statement they say they could even move next year's World Championships to the summer of 2022.

World Athletics say they're committed to producing an outdoor season of some description this year, even if it starts later and ends later than it usually would.

The opening two Diamond League meetings of the year in Doha and China have already been postponed.

The next stop in Stockholm remains pencilled in for May 24, but with athletes currently unable to train it would appear that is unlikely to go ahead either.

World Athletics' statement reads:

World Athletics welcomes the decision of the IOC and the Japanese Government to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games to 2021.

It is what athletes want and we believe this decision will give all athletes, technical officials and volunteers some respite and certainty in these unprecedented and uncertain times.

Athletics will continue to do whatever it can to preserve and create an outdoor season of one-day meetings in 2020, starting and ending later than usual, so athletes, when they are able and it is safe to, will have access to competitions in every region.

This will help them benchmark their performances and adjust their training accordingly for an Olympic Games in 2021.

In light of this announcement, we will also expedite our current review of the Olympic qualification system, in cooperation with the IOC, and release any changes to the process as soon as possible so athletes know where they stand.

World Athletics stands ready to work with the IOC and all sport on an alternative date for the Olympic Games in 2021 and has already been in discussion with the Organising Committee of the World Athletics Championships Oregon 21 regarding the possibility of moving the dates of this highly popular worldwide event.

They have reassured us that they will work with all of their partners and stakeholders to ensure that Oregon is able to host the World Athletics Championships on alternative dates, including dates in 2022.

(03/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Richie McCormack
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The International Olympic Committee and Tokyo 2020 organizers have officially announced the Games will be postponed until 2021

The Tokyo Olympic Games have officially been postponed, the IOC announced Tuesday morning. The decision comes after weeks of reassurances from the IOC and Tokyo 2020 organizers that the Games would go ahead as planned, despite global concerns regarding the coronavirus outbreak.

Many people around the world—including athletes and national sport governing bodies—have been calling for postponement, but it took the withdrawal of the Canadian and Australian Olympic Committees to push the IOC to this point. 

IOC President Thomas Bach and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe agreed that the COVID-19 pandemic was becoming too much to handle, and they decided that postponement was the right route to take. The IOC’s statement says the Olympics will be rescheduled “not later than summer 2021.” Regardless of when they are held, the Games will keep the name “Tokyo 2020.”

The Olympic Games have been cancelled on three occasions—1916, 1940 and 1944—all due to war. Tokyo 2020 will be the first postponement of a Games, however. The postponement will come as a relief to people across the world, and it keeps the Olympic dream alive for many Canadian athletes. 

(03/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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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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The Quarantine Backyard Ultra is a chance to race virtually for free this spring

If you’re itching to race this spring but don’t know where to turn, maybe just look to your backyard. The Quarantine Backyard Ultra is a free race that anyone can enter, and you can do it from the comfort of your own home or on a route nearby. Canadian ultrarunner and treadmill-running world record-holder Dave Proctor will be running the Backyard Ultra, which will be broadcast on YouTube starting on April 4, and the Barkley Marathons‘ Laz Lake will be the honorary race director.

The race starts at 6 a.m. PT on April 4. All runners will connect via Zoom video call, and this is where their progress will be monitored. Athletes can choose between running on a treadmill or on a route that starts and finishes at their home. Runners who choose the former option must point their camera at their treadmill after they complete each lap to prove they completed the distance (each lap is 6.706K).

Racers who opt to run outside must use a GPS watch or smartphone to record their distance run, and at the end of each lap, they must show proof of the completed lap to the Zoom audience. Once runners complete each lap, they can relax until the next lap begins. The last person running is the winner.

The race will be live streamed on YouTube, which should satisfy many running fans’ needs for live racing. Better yet, the event will have live updates on its Facebook page written by Lake, and, if all goes well with Zoom, Lake will also provide colour commentary over the live feed as well. Last year, Lake travelled to Calgary and acted as the honorary race director for Proctor’s Outrun Backyard Ultra, which was modelled after Lake’s Big’s Backyard Ultra in Tennessee.

The race is being organized by Personal Peak, an endurance coaching company witch which Proctor works. In May, Proctor was set to tackle the TransCanadian speed record attempt, and Personal Peak coaches were going to be his crew for the run. When he had to postpone his attempt, Proctor decided he had to do something to replace it.

“His fitness level wasn’t going to go to waste,” says Stephanie Gillis-Paulgaard, Proctor’s publicist. “Dave’s a competitor, so we said, ‘Let’s see who else we can get on board.'” So, Personal Peak set the race up and they “extended that invitation to all of the best ultrarunners,” Gillis-Paulgaard says. As it stands now, 11 other elite runners have confirmed for the April 4 race, but Gillis-Paulgaard, Proctor and the Personal Peak team hope to attract runners of all levels.

“Hopefully, for those people who have trained over the winter months, this will give them something to race, whether they run one lap or 50,” Gillis-Paulgaard says. The winner of the event will win what is, according to the race website, “soon to be world’s most coveted prize: The Golden Toilet Paper Roll.” In a time where race opportunities are sparse and toilet paper is hard to come by, you can get both in the newest virtual race.

(03/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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British soldier Jordan Wylie completes marathon after North Pole run was cancelled

Any one of us would be forgiven for re-thinking plans to run an Arctic marathon in the face of a global pandemic.

In fact, anyone would be forgiven for re-thinking plans to run an Arctic marathon full stop.

But when his plans to tackle a 26.2 mile race across the North Pole were halted by the coronavirus outbreak, Jordan Wylie found an alternative.

Last weekend, and a little closer to home, in Poole, he completed a world-first by running a marathon inside a cryotherapy chamber simulating temperatures as low as 60 degrees below freezing.

It comes after Jordan completed marathons in three of the most dangerous countries in the world – Somarlia, Iraq and Afghanistan – in 2018 as part of the Running Dangerously project.

Now he is looking to repeat the feat in his ‘Polar Edition’ of the challenge. Already he has completed marathons in Siberia, the Yukon and Iceland, and now he can add a cryotherapy chamber in Poole to that list.

The CryoAction chamber, housed at CryoLabs Poole, can reach sub-zero temperatures of -160 degrees, but was set between -30 to -60 degrees to match the real life Arctic and Siberian conditions Jordan would have faced during his four-hour run.

The ex-soldier turned extreme adventurer experienced early onset of frostnip - the stage before frostbite begins - for the first time in his life during latest marathon and says it was in many ways uncharted territory.

“This is the first time anything like this has been attempted,” he said. “I am used to running in sub-zero temperatures, and have done it three times before, but this was an entirely new experience.

“I have been training hard for this latest marathon, so I’m glad that the CryoLabs team have been able to help us add to the £1 million I’ve raised through events like this.”

The CryoAction chamber is usually used by sports stars, including Andy Murray, Gareth Bale and many Premier League football teams, to deliver increased gains in performance, speed up injury recovery times, reduce inflammation and enable better sleep quality and increased energy levels.

For Jordan’s marathon, the chamber was kitted out with a treadmill as he completed the task in isolation.

Ian Watson, director at CryoLabs, said: “After hearing about the problems Jordan has had trying to complete his series of Arctic marathons I knew we could help.

“Although we have never done a marathon before we have used the cryotherapy chamber for TV production crews to test their camera equipment in Arctic conditions before travelling to the North Pole. We set the temperature of our chamber to -30C and kept a close eye on Jordan as he completed the 26.2 mile run.”

(03/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Elliott Binks
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The North Pole Marathon

The North Pole Marathon

Welcome to the running experience of a lifetime. Athletes like you can make history as a continuing new breed of Arctic adventurer. By competing in the World’s Coolest Marathon, the North Pole Marathon, you can become one of a truly select few to race at the top of the world - at the Geographic North Pole. And you will feel...

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The 109th San Francisco Bay To Breakers has been postponed to September 20

Like so many races beng cancelled and postponed, this was a tough decision.  The race organizers posted this, "Following further discussions with the City and County of San Francisco surrounding the escalating COVID-19 outbreak, we have made the decision to postpone Bay to Breakers to September 20, 2020.

"The health and safety of our participants, staff and volunteers is our utmost priority, and we are grateful to the City for their flexibility and assistance in selecting this new date to ensure this legacy event takes place for the 109th consecutive year.

“Bay to Breakers is more than just a race. This event was started in 1912 to unify a recovering San Francisco community following a devastating earthquake. For more than a century, it has represented the strength and resilience of the Bay area, while serving as a celebration of diversity and community for participants and spectators alike,” said John Kane, CEO of Capstone Event Group.

“We look forward to continuing this legacy and celebrating the next chapter of Bay to Breakers with everyone on September 20.”

"All existing 2020 Bay to Breakers registrations will be automatically transferred for the new date. No action is needed on your part.

"Refunds will not be offered. If you are unable to make the new date, you have the option to defer your 2020 registration to the 2021 race."

(03/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by Race Organizers
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Alaska Airlines Bay to Breakers

Alaska Airlines Bay to Breakers

2020 race is cancelled. San Francisco’s Alaska Airlines Bay to Breakers is an annual footrace operated by Wasserman Events and has run continuously for over 100 year as a staple to the City by the Bay. With a starting point near the San Francisco Bay, a few blocks from The Embarcadero, the 12K race runs west through the city and...

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Ultramarathon competitor Diana Dzaviza runs 37 kilometers without leaving the confines of her apartment

A Latvian woman living in Vienna has reportedly managed to combine the twin virtues of exercise and social distancing by running 37 kilometers without leaving the confines of her apartment.

Ultramarathon competitor Diāna Džaviza spent six hours performing the feat along a 22-meter route that encompassed landmarks including kitchen, bathroom and bedroom.

She completed 1,687 laps and is also donating 172 euros to a charity for seriously ill children using the money she was going to pay to enter a long distance race in Austria that was cancelled due to the coronavirus crisis.

According to data from the "Strava" app, the distance was even more impressive at some 46.36 km.

The 107-kilometer Riga-Valmiera track record holder and current Latvian champion in the 100-kilometer distance had decided on March 21 to take part in the annual six-hour charity run in Austria , where the proceeds would be donated to families with seriously ill patients, but did not let the cancellation of the event prevent her from stretching her legs.

Refreshments were provided along the way in the form not of high-energy drinks but home-cooked pancakes supplied by her daughter.

(03/23/2020) ⚡AMP
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In challenging times, Of all the communities within the sport of athletics, mountain runners spend more time outdoors than most

So when restrictions for outdoor activities and exercise are introduced, as has been the case in recent weeks during the coronavirus pandemic, it has been particularly challenging to maintain a decent level of fitness for runners who routinely log anywhere between 100 to 200 kilometres per week.

The World Mountain Running Association (WMRA) spoke to some of the world’s leading mountain runners and found that what united them all was a stronger sense of community and a feeling that this crisis puts running into perspective.

Francesco Puppi, the 2017 world long distance mountain-running champion, describes the situation in Italy.

“Life has changed drastically,” he said. “Everyone is supposed to stay at home and avoid social contacts as much as possible: it's the only weapon we have to fight the virus, and we don’t know how long all this will go on.

“Running is permitted but only under particular circumstances. I am currently training, just at a slightly lower intensity than before. I think everyone in this situation should have the sensibility to understand if, when and how to run. It should be done with discretion and care. This is a form of respect for those who are suffering.

“It doesn’t mean that all the work I did has been wasted,” adds Puppi, who had been due to compete at the Rotterdam Marathon. “I am still proud of what I managed, of the big effort I put into those 110-mile weeks, the sore legs, the long workouts, of the improvements and setbacks I’ve experienced on this journey. It’s just a matter of re-thinking our goals.

“Keep on running because this is something we love and makes us feel good, even in the worst situation.”

For 2019 WMRA World Cup winner Andrew Douglas, the situation in the UK, and in his home nation of Scotland, is ‘rapidly changing’.

“I’m just trying to appreciate every chance I get at the moment to put my trainers on and head out for a run,” said Douglas, who is anticipating the introduction of stricter measures like those in Spain, France and Italy.

“Undoubtedly it’s disappointing to see this having such a profound impact on races, but personally the effect it has on me pales in comparison to the much bigger issues facing society, so ultimately it’s just about getting some perspective. I had my best ever season last year so that’s something I’m fortunate to be able to have at the back of my mind.

“Like most people, I have not experienced anything like this in my lifetime, so as much as my working environment is changing, my training at the moment is the one ordinary thing I can rely on for the moment in these extraordinary times.”

“When pubs are closed in Ireland, then it's definitely serious,” said Irish runner Zak Hanna.

“The mountains aren't going anywhere any time soon, so just keep calm, weather the storm and we will all come through this. As the Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said, ‘Let it be said that when things were at their worst, we were at our best’.”

Mimmi Kotka, who is from Sweden but lives in France, is into her third day of confinement. The 2018 Marathon du Mont Blanc winner is allowed to exercise outdoors but must stay close to home. “You have to carry a certificate for this too, stating where you live and what your errand outside is,” she says. “Adjusting to new circumstances is part of being human; we need to deal with it. If you’re healthy, be grateful for that. And this is about doing what’s right; after all, running is a leisure activity.”

“In order not to clog up extra resources in hospitals, we're not allowed to go very high up into the mountains,” adds Britain’s Sarah Tunstall, who is based in France. “The mountain rescue teams and workers who control the avalanches at this time of the year are also isolating so it makes the mountains especially dangerous.”

British mountain runner Natalie White, who is currently based in northern Italy, one of the hardest hit areas, says: “Doing our part is going to help not just ourselves but others. Some areas are allowing runners to go out, but close to home and solo. That in itself is a positive to be grateful for.”

It’s not just the athletes who are affected either. Competition organisers have also been hit by the crisis. US runner Max King, who is also race director of the recently cancelled Bend Marathon, asks his fellow athletes for their understanding in these difficult times.

WMRA Council member Nancy Hobbs urges runners to practise social distancing. “It is challenging when running with someone else to not speak, of course, and the further apart you get from someone, the harder it is to communicate,” she says. “However, doing track workouts with friends can be modified. Being creative is the key.

“One of the most important things is to check in with your running friends,” adds Hobbs. “It’s crucial to support one another.”

(03/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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African Games 10,000 meters champion, Berehanu Tsegu of Ethiopia receives four-year doping ban for EPO

Berehanu Tsegu of Ethiopia has received a four-year doping ban from the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) after testing positive for the blood-boosting drug erythropoietin (EPO).

The 20-year-old triumphed in the 10,000 meter competition at the 2019 African Games in Morocco, winning the Yangzhou Jianzhen International Half Marathon in the same year. 

Tsegu tested positive for EPO after providing an in-competition sample at the Copenhagen Half Marathon in September 2019. 

He initially denied any knowledge of taking the prohibited substance, claiming "he was not aware how EPO could have entered his body."

This month, however, Tsegu has admitted the anti-doping rule violations and accepted the consequences. 

He has subsequently received a four-year ban and had all results from September 15 2019 disqualified. 

In 2018, Ethiopia was named top of a list of nations categorized by World Athletics as most at risk of doping.

Along with Belarus, Ukraine and Kenya, they were among four countries included in Category A - Member Federations, which World Athletics believe are most likely to have doping problems.

Doping products are reportedly easily available in Addis Ababa, World Athletics warned.  

Following their inclusion on the list, the Ethiopian Athletics Federation launched a major education program among young athletes to warn them of the dangers of doping.  

Tsegu's suspension has been announced just weeks after Rio 2016 Olympic steeplechase gold medalist Ruth Jebet was handed a four-year ban for EPO.

The 23-year-old, who is Kenyan-born but competes for Bahrain, had tested positive for EPO in December 2017.

(03/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by Nancy gillen
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World record marathon holder Eliud Kipchoge suffers loneliness at his running training

When he broke the two-hour barrier for the marathon in October, Eliud Kipchoge did not run alone, but now, as a diary he is recording reveals, he has no choice.

Kipchoge may be the only man to have broken two hours, but when he set the time in Vienna he ran with an echelon of pacemakers.

Now, as the first episode of "Eliud Kipchoge's Isolation Diary", makes clear, he is experiencing the loneliness of the long-distance runner.

The diary, recorded for the BBC, opens with the Kenyan rising from a kitchen chair with his tracksuit and running shoes on.

"It's now 6 o'clock," he says.

"This is now the third day since we broke up from the the camp due to coronavirus. It's really hard to train because I value teamwork. It's mutual interest because it helps me so much."

"I am trying to quarantine myself, stay with the family and make sure I don't actually mingle with a lot of people," he says.

"I am trying to keep more fit myself and wake up early at 6 o'clock and go for a run and make sure I stay fit," he adds.

"Good morning," he adds, waving, turning and heading on his own for open front door.

Outside it is dark and dogs can be heard barking.

(03/23/2020) ⚡AMP
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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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The 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games has been postponed to next summer

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has decided to postpone the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games which were both scheduled for the summer of 2020.

Thomas Bach, president of the IOC, has set a four-week deadline period to decide on the new dates for the international sporting events.

The decision to postpone the 2020 Olympic Games, which would've been held between July 24 and August 9, has been taken due to the coronavirus outbreak and will be made official in the next few hours.

IOC have ruled out cancelling the events but have finally given in to pressure from important federations such as that of the United Kingdom and the United States.

In the upcoming weeks, Tokyo Olympics organisers have to deal with several legal implications in regard to ongoing contracts, insurance fees, future inhabitants who have already bought buildings in the Olympic Village and the extra cost of their maintenance.

(03/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by Gerardo Riquelme
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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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Course revealed for World Athletics Cross Country Championships Bathurst 2021

In one year, athletes from across the globe will descend on this spiritual home of Australian sport to take on the terrain, and whatever else mother nature can muster, for the World Athletics Cross Country Championships Bathurst 2021.

To celebrate the one year to go mark, the local organising committee has unveiled the official course animation for the event, which is scheduled to take place on 20 March 2021.

Mount Panorama is better known as the home of Australia’s premier endurance motor race, but in one year from now it will welcome the world’s best endurance runners for what will be Australia's first World Athletics Series event in 25 years.

The varied landscape and altitude around the iconic race track offers a range of enticing and challenging options for cross country running.

When Bathurst was awarded the championships, Athletics Australia president Mark Arbib said the event would embrace both elite and recreational runners in a celebration of the art of cross country.

"As recreational running continues to grow in Australia, the World Cross Country represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our elite runners to race on home soil, but also for our community runners to celebrate the sport and be involved in running events planned to take place during the championships," Arbib said.

(03/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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The Canadian and Australian Olympic Committees have decided not to field teams at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

Canada and Australia will not send athletes to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo because of the risks associated with the coronavirus outbreak, the Olympic committees for both countries said in separate statements on Sunday. 

Both countries' Olympic committees also are calling for the Games to be postponed until 2021. 

"While we recognize the inherent complexities around a postponement, nothing is more important than the health and safety of our athletes and the world community," the Canadian Olympic Committee and Canadian Paralympic Committee said in a joint statement. "This is not solely about athlete health -- it is about public health."

The Australian Olympic Committee's executive board met by teleconference Sunday morning and unanimously agreed that an Australian Olympic team could not be assembled given the changing circumstances across the world, the committee said in a statement.

The committee also said "our athletes now need to prioritise their own health and of those around them, and to be able to return to the families."

"It's clear the Games can't be held in July," said Ian Chesterman, Australian Team Chef de Mission for Tokyo. "Our athletes have been magnificent in their positive attitude to training and preparing, but the stress and uncertainty has been extremely challenging for them."

IOC says its not canceling the Olympics.  The committees' decisions came hours after International Olympic Committee's executive board said it is considering postponing -- but not canceling -- this summer's Olympic Games in Tokyo because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The IOC board said it is considering several options to deal with the ongoing outbreak, including modifying plans to allow the 2020 Tokyo Games to begin on schedule on July 24 or changing the start date for the Games.

IOC considers postponing Tokyo Games but says it won't cancel them

The IOC executive board ruled out canceling the Games, saying it would "destroy the Olympic dream of 11,000 athletes" and all those who support them, according to a letter to athletes from IOC President Thomas Bach.

The Canadian statement thanked the IOC for saying it would not cancel the games, saying the IOC appreciates the "the importance of accelerating its decision-making regarding a possible postponement."

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that a decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics may be needed if the Games cannot be held in a complete form.

(03/22/2020) ⚡AMP
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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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Training under lockdown, Italian athletes aiming to keep upbeat and focused

Since the spread of the deadly New Coronavirus began earlier this year, athletes, like everyone else, have been forced to adjust. First, those things directly related to their athletic pursuits: their schedules, their training, their travel. As the virus continued to spread across the planet, those adjustments moved from the professional to the personal and are now impacting on most aspects of their lives -where and when they can eat and shop, who they can see and who they can't – just like the rest of us.

With nearly 25,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 1,809 deaths reported (as at 16 March), Italy is by far the hardest hit country in Europe and was the first (After China) to institute a nationwide quarantine. That came on 9 March, a lockdown that has dramatically restricted movement and further turned normal life on its head.

That’s the context now in which athletes are looking towards the Olympic Games. Conjecture about the future of those Games, scheduled to get underway on 24 July, is feeding the uncertainty, but for now that goal remains as the key driving force for Italian athletes who are trying to keep upbeat even as some scramble to find places to train.

“I’m worried about the national emergency and the lack of races but my mood remains good,” said Davide Re, the national 400m record holder, who, instead of attending an overseas training camp, is currently in Rieti where he is today celebrating his 27th birthday. Restrictions have closed indoor training facilities, but as a national level athlete, he has been given permission to train on an outdoor track.

“I’m sorry to celebrate my birthday in quarantine, without the classic pastarelle at the camp,” he said. “But training is good. Luckily, being a national athlete I have the opportunity to go to the field so my routine hasn’t changed too much. We can't use the gym, of course, but we can use the weights on the track outside.”

For Vallortigara, a time for focus, and reflection

From Siena, high jumper Elena Vallortigara reports that for her, not too much has changed.

“Last week I managed to train every day on my track except Tuesday, but I made up for that on a football pitch. If the facility remains open, it changes little, because I can jump and train on the track.

Not knowing when the season will resume, Vallortigara said, is the more difficult uncertainty to manage.

Since the date of her next competition is up in the air, Vallortigara said, “the best thing is to continue my general conditioning work that I would have done in this period anyway, and then finalise my plans when there will be more specific news - even on the Olympic Games. Making many plans on what may or may not be is really a waste of energy right now.”

Re concurred. “I hope we’ll know something soon about the season to figure out how to regulate our training.”

An even greater difficulty, Vallortigara said, “is to maintain a positive, and even a little detached attitude. I feel that this feeling of general panic and insecurity has an impact on me, as on everyone. I’m fortunate to be able to go to the field and maintain at least some normalcy in my days.

“But the most important problem is people’s health: from my side, I try to remain focused on the target, because I think this can help me, hoping normality may come back soon. I also hope everyone can come back to their usual lives as soon as possible, but in the meantime, with increased awareness. This period should also be one for everybody to reflect.”

Crippa assists national campaign

Meanwhile, national 10,000m record holder Yeman Crippa continues his drive towards Tokyo from his home base in Trento.

“The situation is more difficult and I have to be much more careful, and always have my self-declaration with me,” he said, referring to a state-mandated document which allows him to leave his home.

“For a while I won’t be on the track and in the gym, but for bicycle and road training there isn’t a problem. But it’s not a good situation because races and training camps have been cancelled. Tomorrow I was supposed to go to the United States.

“It’s getting hard but I won’t give up. I know it will work out so my preparation for Tokyo continues, albeit with some more obstacles. It would have been worse if we hadn't been able to train at all.”

Like the others, he’s taking the current health risks and national decrees very seriously. Crippa was among the leading figures involved in the #DistantiMaUniti campaign set up by the Italian Ministry for Sport and Youth Policies whose aim was to convince young people to stay at home during this critical period.

Bringing their work home

Plenty of athletes are bringing their work home as best as they can. Like this unidentified high jumper in Milan.

So too are shot putter Leonardo Fabbri and hurdler Luminosa Bogliolo.

After a strong indoor campaign capped by a 21.59m national indoor record, Fabbri is back at work at his home in Florence.

“We decided to disconnect for a few days after the commitments of the indoor season, where I competed a lot. But now my training continues at home.” He’s hoping to return to his regular training base in Bologna two weeks from now.

Bogliolo, last year’s World University Games 100m hurdles champion, brought her work into her living room in the northwestern town of Alassio, located midway between Genoa and San Remo.

“Yes, I have all the tools in my living room, so when I'm not on the field I can train on treadmills, stationary bikes and resistance bands,” she said. But she too is finding the uncertainty of competitions the most difficult aspect to adjust to.

“The situation continues to change. Mentally I want to believe that we will compete again, but you cannot know. My coaches are changing the schedules a bit, but we’re working as if we’ll have a regular outdoor season.

“I’m trying not to give up and stay focused even if what is happening in Italy and around the world is truly an incredible situation."

(03/22/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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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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Looking for Some Running Content to Watch? On Running’s Chasing Tokyo Series May be Just For You

On Running’s Chasing Tokyo series may be just for you. The video series chronicled the nine athletes of the On ZAP Endurance professional running team (Tyler Pennel, Joe Stilin, Andrew Colley, Johnny Crain, Tristin Van Ord, Matt McClintock, Joanna Thompson, Josh Izewski, and Nicole DiMercurio) and their attempts to qualify for the 2020 US Olympic marathon team. The five-part series became a hit on social media, with 1.35 million views on YouTube, and more than 7.2 million views across all platforms according to On.

The On ZAP runners came up short of the Olympic goal.

If you want to watch the series without knowing how the On runners did, scroll to the videos embedded below. Otherwise keep reading.

However, they had two strong performances in the men’s race at the US Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta. with Tyler Pennel (11th in 2:12:34) and Josh Izewski (17th in 2:14:15) both posting top-20 finishes. Pennel’s run showed just how strong the men’s race was; despite a PR on the tough Atlanta course, Pennel could not match his 5th-place finish from the 2016 Trials.

While the top 3 finishers in Atlanta got the most attention, the series captures why so many runners dedicate a significant portion of their lives training for and dreaming of the Olympics. Joe Stilin, who had an off day at the Trials and finished 107th, is in tears in the final episode talking about how much it meant to him to have his high school coach, his dad, his brother, and even fellow teammates encouraging him at the Trials.

“It’s what the sport’s about…Sometimes, it’s not about just crushing and being top 3 and all that. It’s why we run,” Stilin said (that clip is here).

The series is directed by Emmy-winning director, Andrew Hinton (“Man with the Halo”) and starts following the team in 2019 in episode 1, “Dudes in the Woods,” which explains what the On ZAP team — located in the Blue Ridge Mountains in Boone, N.C., — is all about. Episode 5 concludes with the Olympic Trials. There isn’t much footage from the Trials — only four minutes of the one-hour series comes from once they’re on the starting line in Atlanta — but the point isn’t to capture the race itself, but to show the buildup and struggles all Olympic dreamers go through.

Episode 1 is only five minutes, so give it a shot and see if you get hooked.

And don’t feel too bad that the ZAP runners didn’t make it to Tokyo. They’re already dreaming of Paris 2024. “Of the nine athletes on the team, I think probably half of them are thinking about this race four years from now. Sometimes it’s the people who are just too stupid to quit who get things done and we’re probably in that category,” said On ZAP head coach Pete Rea in the final episode.

One final thing: is the On ZAP runners were allowed to wear the new Nike super shoes during the race. We are full of praise for On for allowing this: it shows they put their athletes first. On was founded by former world duathlon champion Olivier Bernhard, who knows a thing or two about performance (LRC’s Wejo went to Olivier’s house in Switzerland in 2012 or 2013). Olivier was a Nike-sponsored athlete back in the day, and when he got injured he tinkered with his shoes, and that led him to starting a shoe company once he stopped competing. Roger Federer is now working with On and an investor in the company. Athletes of that caliber know is it not right to force athletes to compete at a disadvantage, so they let the On ZAP runners wear the Nike shoes. We applaud them. None of the ZAP runners are forced to wonder “What if…

(03/22/2020) ⚡AMP
by Let’s Run
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Bolder Boulder 10k has been moved from Memorial Day to Labor Day

Organizers of the Bolder Boulder 10k in Boulder, Colorado has announced that the hugely popular annual road race will take place on Labor Day weekend in 2020 instead of Memorial Day weekend. They also said that their parallel race that’s normally held on Labor Day weekend in Fort Collins — the FORTitude 10K — will be folded into the Bolder Boulder and will return to its normal setup next year.

Earlier this week it was announced that due to the coronavirus pandemic there would be a postponement of the Boulder race which runs through the Colorado city’s streets and ends at Folsom Field on the University of Colorado campus.

“There continues to be increasing and substantial challenges for our communities including Boulder and Fort Collins, as well as for (Colorado State University) and CU. Two great communities and two great universities are coming together, reflecting the spirit that is our culture in Colorado,” race director Cliff Bosley said in a prepared statement of the effort to merge the two 10Ks.

The Bolder Boulder is in its 42nd year and the FORTitude 10K was first run in 2017.

“Whether you’re running the BOLDERBoulder on Labor Day or running the FORTitude on Labor Day, we’re running together. Everyone we met with to arrive at this decision recognizes that while Boulder and Fort Collins as well as CU and CSU compete in many areas, this is another example of coming together to collaborate,” Bosley said.

(03/21/2020) ⚡AMP
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BOLDER BOULDER

BOLDER BOULDER

In 1979 we dreamt of attracting a few hundred of our friends to race though the streets of Boulder, Colorado to celebrate Memorial Day with our families. Fast forward almost 40 years and the Bolder BOULDER has grown to become one of the largest and most highly acclaimed 10K’s in the world. Almost 1.2 million runners, joggers, walkers and spectators...

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The Elite field at the River Bank 25k Run and other races may be affected because they needed to move their date to the fall

The rescheduling of the Amway River Bank Run in Grand Rapid Michigan to the fall will affect the number of elite runners for the 25K race, but organizers say that was expected anyway in an Olympic year.

"If it was May, we knew the Olympics would have an impact and we expect that will carry over and extend to the fall as well," said Greg Meyer, the elite athlete coordinator for the River Bank Run.

Race officials announced Friday the 43rd edition of the run would be rescheduled from May 9 to Oct. 24 because of the coronavirus.  

The upcoming Summer Olympics had already affected interest and availability in the elite field, said Meyer, noting that’s an every-four-year challenge for organizers. The Olympic contingent includes Aliphine Tuliamuk, a three-time women’s winner of the River Bank Run, and Molly Seidel, who was second last year.

Add in the fears of COVID-19 and the expectations have been narrowed.

"There's not a whole lot we can do about it," he said. "Yeah, it is basically starting from scratch (with the date change), but it's a one-year thing and we'll do the best we can. For the majority of people, this is a community run, the highlight of their running year, and that's something that won't change."

Last year about 3,700 competed in the 25K, won by Parker Stinson of Boulder, Colorado (1:13:46.44) and Emma Bates of Boise, Idaho (1:23:49.50).

Meyer has heard complaints from those who dislike the second Saturday in May for the race and may prefer the fall date. But he dismissed that.

"To me, the River Bank Run is really the rite of spring around here," he said. "Yeah, for some it's not the perfect timing. But you know what? For so many it's been just right. I'm not going to second-guess that."

The River Bank Run, with around 17,000 entries for its various events, is now like many big races pushed to the fall, including the Boston Marathon (from April to September) and the London Marathon (from April to October), while the Chicago Marathon remains set for Oct. 11.

(03/21/2020) ⚡AMP
by Peter Wallner
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Amway River Bank Run

Amway River Bank Run

2020 race was moved to October 24 from May 9. The Amway River Bank Run presented by Fifth Third Bank with Spectrum Health the Official Health Partner will celebrate 43 years of road running on Saturday, May 9, 2020. More than 16,000 people are expected to compete in the event which features the largest 25K road race in the country...

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No finisher at the Barkley Marathons again this year (also, no race)

Even the legendary Barkley Marathons couldn't make it through a pandemic. The Tennessee ultramarathon was called yesterday and remains without a finisher to the race since John Kelly in 2017.

The ultra trail race was set to take place later this month or early April in Frozen Head State Park. The 100-mile course is limited to 60 hours. It's considered one of the toughest races on the planet in part because it is both physically and mentally exhausting.

There is always a great deal of interest in the race, and this year was no different as Canadian ultra trail runner Gary Robbins was set to make his return to the race after a long recovery from injury.

Robbins hinted that the race would likely be cancelled with a social media post on March 14, but also said that he was ready and was nearing peak fitness in his training.

"I feel like this might be the fittest I’ve ever been heading into the race. Certainly, it’s the best my legs have ever felt at this point in time. Having missed almost two years due to injury, but continuing to train over 500 hours on the bike in 2019, seems to have done nothing but strengthened my body overall," he wrote.

Race founder Gary "Lazarus Lake" Cantrell was working hard to try to make the race happen, even after the U.S. travel ban resulted in a number of European runners having to cancel.

Without a doubt, "Laz" will be back soon enough to enact his unique brand of punishment on unsuspecting runners who might think a run in the Tennessee woods sounds like fun.

(03/21/2020) ⚡AMP
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Portland Track statement affirming the 2020 Portland Track Festival and Stumptown Twilight remain on the schedule

Portland Track issued this statement regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its summer schedule.

Citizens of Tracklandia:  Portland Track is committed to the health and well-being of our athletes and fans and, as soon as it is safe to venture onto the oval again, we will provide opportunities for athletes to compete in 2020. Like you, we are devastated by the impact that COVID-19 has had on the spring outdoor season and the continued threat the virus has made on the Summer Olympics and the US Track and Field Trials.

We recognize the loss of valuable qualifying opportunities that athletes have planned their seasons around and it is our commitment, that as soon as it is safe to do so, we’ll be there with our starter’s pistol to host some races and get you on to Eugene, then Tokyo.

As of today, Portland Track has not canceled our current schedule of meets. We intend to hold to our published dates, but we are making contingency plans if hosting these events is not possible, for any reason. Our priority will be on providing Olympic Trials qualifying races for high-performance athletes.

If the Olympics are postponed and the Trials window is extended, for example, we’ll add events, as needed, to give competitors every chance to hit US or Olympic entry standards. Similarly, if Oregon’s current limit on the size of events remains in-place we’ll get creative and host a series of small-batch races, without spectators, that keep athletes safe but allow them to race.

We’ll also be coordinating with our friends at other meets around the country. If coaches, agents, and meet directors collaborate efficiently we can put our athletes first and provide the races they need.As circumstances become clearer throughout the spring we’ll post updated information at PortlandTrack.com as well as on our social media channels. 2020 Portland Track Schedule:

May 30-31 Portland Track Festival – Youth Meet

June 4-5 Portland Track Festival – High Performance Meet

June 12 Stumptown Twilight Meet

(03/21/2020) ⚡AMP
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Facing quarantine, Canadians are searching for new ways to exercise without going out

Over the last week, you might have noticed that your regular training route is a but busier than usual. It seems like more and more people are getting out for runs, and while this might be thanks to the start of spring, it’s likely due to COVID-19 self-isolation and social distancing.  

The Globe and Mail reports that since the coronavirus pandemic began, Canadians have been in search of fitness gear.

The Globe spoke with John Stanton, founder of the Running Room, whose stores have reduced their hours across the country amid the coronavirus outbreak. The Running Room website, though, has been bustling with activity. Stanton took a guess (a conservative one, he said) and said since last Thursday, online sales have jumped at least 25 per cent.

From coast to coast, Canadians have been sent home, either to work remotely or wait out the virus. Gyms, pools and all other facilities closed in the last week, leaving people to work out on their own, and the New York Times says “a running boom is taking off.” The Running Room is not the only company to see a boost in sales following this boom.

The Great Life Fitness Store in B.C. told The Globe it has seen at least double its normal sales numbers, specifically for strength-training equipment, and the store is running out of product because of the sudden constant demand. Toronto’s fitness equipment store Physical Assets has also received nonstop calls and requests for gear.

Even Canada’s elite are jumping on the at-home fitness craze, like Rio Olympian Jess O’Connell. O’Connell bought an elliptical machine off Kijiji for some indoor workouts in the coming weeks.

No matter what you choose, whether it’s a run, an at-home core routine or to lift some weights, fitting a workout into your daily schedule is never a bad call.

(03/20/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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France ban means no running outside of a 2K radius of home

As of noon on Tuesday March 17, France went into a 15-day lockdown, which restricts people to going out for essential work, to buy food and essentials, to attend medical appointments, for vital family reasons and for individual physical exercise.

However, the exercise can only be done within a 2K radius of a person’s home. Cycling has been completely banned.

The French Ministry of Sport clarified today, stating, “A 1K or 2K run maximum. It’s not about getting far away from your house. The rule is confinement for everyone. Remember that you should only be leaving for emergencies or for your health. A little jog is good for your sanity but not a 10K run.”

Although most are understanding of the restrictions, some French citizens are upset.

“This measure is really pure stupidity,” says Guillaume Multrier. “What are we risking riding solo? We’re farther from others than in all the other authorized activities.”

However, while some are upset, others are making the best of the situation. The Huffington Post reports that Elisha Nochomovitz spent six hours and 48 minutes running 42.2K around the seven-meter balcony of his apartment in Toulouse on Tuesday.

(03/20/2020) ⚡AMP
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Quarantined Man Elisha Nochomovitz Runs Marathon On Apartment Balcony Amid Coronavirus Lockdown

It was a marathon effort to keep fit and stave off boredom amid the coronavirus lockdown in France.

Elisha Nochomovitz spent 6 hours and 48 minutes running 26.2 miles around the 7-meter balcony of his apartment in Toulouse on Tuesday, just as a 15-day nationwide ban on people leaving their homes (apart from essential outings) came into effect.

Video shared online shows the 32-year-old restaurant worker, who is currently furloughed from his job, running repeatedly up and down the small space. In all, he completed around 6,000 laps.

“I wanted to bring something playful to the containment,” said the seasoned marathon runner, who has 36 such races under his belt.

“I saw pictures of people going out of their homes for jogging. But if everyone does the same, we will all end up outside,” he told HuffPost France, noting how it was the first time he hadn’t been bothered about recording a lengthy time.

“Part of my goal was to kill as much time as possible,” he said.

With French authorities reportedly considering extending the lockdown beyond its initial 15 days, Nochomovitz said he was now mulling over his next stay-at-home challenge.

“How about another marathon to improve my record. Or a 12-hour home trainer session, on my balcony,” he said.

(03/20/2020) ⚡AMP
by Lee Moran
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Irish marathon runner Kevin Seaward believes Olympics probably won't happen

Irish marathon runner Kevin Seaward feels there is "every likelihood" this year's Olympics will not take place because of the coronavirus crisis.

Seaward ran the distance for Ireland at the Rio Games and set a new Northern Ireland marathon record of 2:10.09 last month to seemingly book his Tokyo spot.

"The Olympics symbolize something more than a Games at the moment," he said.

"It would be a beacon of hope for people. But I honestly don't think they are going to happen."

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is continuing to insist the Games could still begin on 24 July despite the pandemic but several high profile athletes including British heptathlete Katarina Johnson-Thompson have criticized this stance.

World champion Johnson-Thompson says training has become "impossible" because of the restrictions around coronavirus and has had to move back home from her normal base in France after the country was put on lockdown.

As a distance runner who does most of his workouts alone and rarely uses a track, Seaward says his training is not being hindered to the same extent as the Englishwoman, but nevertheless feels the IOC will have to at least move the Games to a later date if not cancel altogether.

Seaward, 36, is an assistant head teacher at a Leicestershire secondary school and has been working flat out with his colleagues to make arrangements for the children of key workers who will remain in school in the coming weeks after the British Government's school closures announcement on Wednesday.

"It's challenging times. School has been pretty crazy the last three or four days but we've got a little bit of clarity now," the Northern Irishman told BBC Sport Northern Ireland.

"You don't know that the Olympics are going to happen. I've come to the conclusion that there's every likelihood of them not happening. We've certainly got bigger things to worry about globally at the minute."

Seaward believes the postponement and cancellation of numerous Olympic qualifiers and other events which would have offered the opportunity to book Tokyo berths is another reason why the Games are unlikely to happen - certainly in the summer.

"I read an article today where Seb Coe said it was too early to make a decision (on the Games) and I kind of agree it's too early to definitively say yes or no.

"Aside from the fact that what we're experiencing now may not have cleared by then, people still have to qualify. There's a lot of thought that would have to go into making the process fair for everyone.

"From a marathoner's perspective, we have three Irish qualifiers (Seaward, Paul Pollock and Stephen Scullion) but we also know there are multiple other guys (Sean Tobin, Hugh Armstrong and Mick Clohisey) who were training hard and who were determined to give it a go to qualify but their marathons were cancelled."

(03/20/2020) ⚡AMP
by John Haughey
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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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At the age of 70, grandpa Ralph Bernascone finished his 100th marathon on March 1

Ralph Bernascone completed a century of 26-mile runs at the Steyning Stinger on March 1, to the applause of his family who were there to watch.

“There’s nothing special about me,” said Ralph. “If I can do it, anybody can do it, it is just a question of giving it time and you will be able to do it too.”

Ralph, from Henfield, ran his first marathon in 2001 at the age of 51, completing the New York event six weeks after 9/11.  “I started running in 1998 because I was drinking too much, smoking too much and my wife Dorrit was fed up," he said.

“There’s a local running club called Henfield Joggers, I joined them and gradually built up.  You spend all that money getting to New York, that was the incentive, it was certainly not cheap.”

Since then, he has traveled the world running, from Norway to Dorking.  “All of them have been memorable, I’ve enjoyed them all," he said. 

“Reykjavic in Iceland was different – when you land it’s like Mars with all the craters.

“We did one in Marrakech. That was interesting as halfway around we had to stop as a caravan of camels were crossing.  But I do think London Marathon is the best in the world.”

The septuagenarian, who still runs with the Henfield Joggers after 22 years, is not even the oldest in the group.

He is urging others to pick up a passion for jogging.  “Try it, do it. One thing I can truthfully say is that I’ve never met a nasty runner – everyone is so nice and pleasant. It doesn’t matter how much money you have when you’re running up a steep hill, everyone is the same.

“All you need is some good running shoes for about £70 or £80. What’s that when a golf club costs £500?”

Ralph was cheered over the line of his 100th marathon by his daughter Karina Ray, 34, who lives in Shoreham.

She said: “I normally go to see him if it’s local and my husband has done the Brighton one with him before.

“On the day of the 100th, we were up there on the Downs with my husband and his two granddaughters.

“Steyning Stinger was a really hard one, running up the hills and it’s muddy. I’m pretty lazy compared to him.”

Henfield Joggers celebrated its 30th anniversary this year.

The first run as a club was on April 1, 1990, with six people taking part.

There are now nearly 130 runners “of all abilities”.

(03/19/2020) ⚡AMP
by Jody Doherty-Cove
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Mo Farah explains over taking supplement

Mo Farah has explained how he came to change his account when questioned in 2015 about taking the supplement L-carnitine before the 2014 London Marathon.

A BBC Panorama documentary aired last Monday revealed that Farah was interviewed by investigators from the US Anti-Doping Agency in 2015 as part of its investigation into his former coach Alberto Salazar and asked whether he had been given L-carnitine before the previous year’s London Marathon.

Farah was tested six days after that race and the BBC reported that, despite listing a number of other products and medicines, he failed to record L-carnitine on his doping control form. In transcripts obtained by the BBC, Farah denies having been given the injection in the initial 2015 interview with Usada.

Panorama reported he then met the UK Athletics head of distance running, Barry Fudge, immediately after the interview and returned to the room as the investigators were preparing to leave. At this point, Farah, who won 5,000 metres and 10,000m gold at the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games, told them he had been given the injection.

In an interview with the Sunday Mirror, Farah explains: “I was questioned for five hours. I said one thing and then other things got said and now it’s made out like I’ve done wrong, but if you know how it happened then it’s easier to understand. When I came out I said to Barry, ‘Hey mate, they kept asking me about this supplement. What’s that?’

“He said, ‘Yeah, it’s this, you did take it’, so I went straight back in and told them. I forgot, but as soon as I was told I ran back in. If I was a liar, why would I go straight back in? I said, ‘Look, I genuinely forgot, I didn’t know that. Now I do.’”

Farah said when he was questioned by investigators he thought he had only been given magnesium injections. “I was 100% convinced I hadn’t taken it [L-carnitine],” Farah said. “In my mind I hadn’t taken anything else apart from magnesium. I put magnesium on the doping control form.

“I can sleep at night knowing I’ve done nothing wrong. I love representing my country, making my country proud and doing what I do best because it is a gift and that’s why I do it with a smile. But it’s not fair what comes with it. It’s not fair on my kids and my family. It’s just not right. It’s depressing. Mentally and physically it’s had an effect on me.”

L-carnitine is not a prohibited substance under Wada rules. Injections and infusions of it were permitted within Wada rules in 2014 provided the volume was below 50 millilitres every six hours. The permitted volume is now 100ml every 12 hours.

Salazar, Farah’s former coach at the Nike Oregon Project, was handed a four-year ban by Usada in October last year for doping violations, though he has appealed to the court of arbitration for sport.

Farah, who ended his relationship with the American in 2017, has never failed a drugs test and is not accused of any wrongdoing.

(03/19/2020) ⚡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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Somali-Belgian athlete Bashir Abdi sets sights on European record after sub-2:05 clocking in Tokyo

Bashir Abdi became only the second European athlete in history to break the 2:05-barrier for the marathon in the Tokyo Marathon on 1 March and he harbours aspirations of becoming the fastest.

The 31-year-old shattered his own national record with 2:04:49 to take the runner-up spot in the Japanese capital ahead of a prospective second successive Olympic appearance. And what is most remarkable about his ascent is he former amateur football player only started running at the age of 18.  

Abdi was born in the Somalian capital of Mogadishu and arrived in Belgium in 2002 at the age of 13. Back then running made no sense as he was a football addict. “As a kid I could not even understand why people would run in circles. Chasing a football made sense but skinny people running in circles did not at all. That was until I started running at the age of 18 and I have never regretted that decision”. 

Now Abdi is second on the European all-time marathon list with  2:04:49, his third consecutive Belgian record in only his fourth marathon after previous record runs in London (2:07:03) and Chicago (2:06:14) last year. Abdi came second in Tokyo, only 34 seconds behind Ethiopia’s Birhanu Legese, in a race which was devoid of the mass participation element due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

“I expected a finishing time around 2:05, because I have had the best preparation ever towards a marathon. My trainer Gary [Lough] made that very clear during the last weeks of altitude training in Sululta, Ethiopia. I was however surprised by the fact that I finished in second place in a World Marathon Major. To start with about 200 athletes in what normally is a race with 38,000 runners was a rather odd experience. It felt as if I was running a tiny street race in my hometown Ghent.” 

Abdi made his marathon debut back in April 2018 in Rotterdam with a solid 2:10:46 clocking despite bloodying his knees in a collision at the start. Now he is a sub-2:05 marathoner who is considered to be one of the outsiders to win a medal at the Olympic marathon in Sapporo.  

Abdi closed exceptionally quickly in the Chicago Marathon last October and he also ran faster than any other athlete in the Tokyo Marathon between the 35 kilometre checkpoint and the finish. His finish speed could be a great weapon at the Olympics.  

“I received wonderful reactions on my Tokyo performance, but for me finishing in the top eight would be great already. To my account there are six or seven runners that top the bill such as Eliud Kipchoge, Kenenisa Bekele and Birhanu Legese. I also doubt that I will be able to use the same tactics towards Sapporo, as I am not as experienced in the marathon, because I have had the benefit of pacers in my past four races. 

“The conditions will also be fairly different. Both Chicago and Tokyo were somehow similar to what I am used to in Belgium. Together with the Belgian Olympic Team we will prepare towards Sapporo as much as possible. Workouts in a heat chamber will be part of that preparation, combined with the usual altitude camp in Sululta” 

Abdi also has something else to look forward to during his build-up to the Olympics. In June he will become a father for the second time. His daughter Kadra celebrated her first birthday back in October. There is only one race on his schedule before Sapporo so far.   

“Becoming a father for the second time is something I am looking really forward to. I have a great wife who understands that sacrifices have to be made to perform at this level, especially in a year like this. Thanks to apps like Facetime and social media I am able to stay in touch with my family when I am on training camps. My baby daughter even recognises me thanks to social media, so it is somehow a blessing.  

2020 is all about the Olympics for Abdi but he is already thinking about the 2021 season - namely the Belgian half marathon record of 60:18 and more importantly the European marathon record of Kaan Kigen Ozbilen which stands at 2:04:16.   

(03/19/2020) ⚡AMP
by Quinten Lafort
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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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The Lincoln marathon to offer race virtually

Lincoln Marathon organizers and runners are working to figure out a way to still run the marathon after it was cancelled earlier this week.

On May 3rd 7,000 runners were going to compete in the Lincoln Marathon.

Since the race has been cancelled that's not the case but some runners are still hitting the trails.

Matt Anderson has been gearing up for his fifth half marathon.

"Honestly I wasn't shocked," said Anderson. "I don't think anybody is by all the cancellations that have been going on at this point. We understand and hopefully there will be plenty of opportunities to do it in the future."

While it still needs some fine tuning the Lincoln Marathon organizers decided that racers can run the marathon virtually.

"It won't be the same because you won't all be running at the same time and the same conditions," said Ann Ringlein the manager of Lincoln Running Company. "You can see how many people ran in your age group, so we're trying to make it as close to a race situation and simulation as we can."

The virtual marathon means that runners can make their own path, it just has to be a half or full marathon distance.

"Could run to Bennett Nebraska from here," said Anderson. "You could do a loop around the lake. Heck I could run to South Street and back like 20 times and that would count."

Even though the marathon is cancelled Anderson says there is still a goal to accomplish.

"At the end of the day," said Anderson. "It's still about getting out and running and that's what we have to do."

Lincoln Marathon Officials are still working through the details of the virtual run.

They will update all competitors as soon as they have the logistics figured out.

The runners are expected to get their completion certificate, medal and t-shirt.

(03/19/2020) ⚡AMP
by Nicole Griffith
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Lincoln Marathon

Lincoln Marathon

The Lincoln National Guard Marathon and Half-Marathon is run on a citywide course that starts and finishes on the campus of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Runners in both races share a common start and run a loop route past the Nebraska State Capitol, along Sheridan Boulevard, past Union College, along the Highway 2 bike path, past the Lincoln County-City Building...

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Pittsburgh Marathon scheduled for May 3rd has been cancelled says the organizers

We regret to share with all of you that the DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon will not take place in 2020. We worked with our partners in the City of Pittsburgh, at UPMC, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania throughout this process; however, the City of Pittsburgh has — in accordance with guidance from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention — banned all gatherings of 50 or more people during the eight-week period beginning March 15, 2020, in efforts to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

We know that this is the right thing to do to ensure the safety of our participants, staff, volunteers, medical professionals, security personnel and spectators. We are heartbroken to have to cancel this year’s DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon weekend. Each year, more than 40,000 runners take to the streets of Pittsburgh — including kids as young as one year old to grandparents in their nineties, and each of you has a unique story to tell. We know that many of you started training even before January first and have put in months of effort to get to race day, and now that isn’t going to happen. We understand that you are disappointed, and we’re sure that many of you are upset that this is the outcome

(03/18/2020) ⚡AMP
by Race Organizers
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Dick's Sporting Good Pittsburgh Marathon

Dick's Sporting Good Pittsburgh Marathon

This race is your game - however you decide to play it. As a competitor. A fund raiser. An enthusiast. A veteran. A team player. It's whatever you want it to be. It's whatever you make it. It's YOUR game..... Run it. Play it. Own it. Love it. Runners will race on the North Shore of Pittsburgh, cross each of...

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44th running of Lilac Bloomsday Run postponed to September 20th says race organizers

Each May for the past 43 years, Spokane has welcomed the coming of spring and the sense of rebirth through the personal journeys of thousands of Bloomies through the streets of Spokane.  This year, when COVID-19 began to make its way into our consciousness, we at Bloomsday worked with our local health officials, clinging to the hope that we could keep our first Sunday in May date alive. However, developments which have come at lightning speed over the past few days have made it crystal clear that it will be impossible to hold Bloomsday as planned.

We are passionate about organizing an event that has become part of the fabric of Spokane.  We cherish each and every participant and volunteer because collectively they make Bloomsday what it is, a true community celebration that connects us all to the best part of what it means to be human.  We don’t want to lose that, even for a year.  In collaboration with the City of Spokane and the Spokane Regional Health District, we are proud to announce that we are going to bloom on Sunday, September 20, 2020. 

We want all Bloomies to know that your entry into Bloomsday 2020 will carry forward to the new date of September 20th including, of course, Corporate Cup.  It is our fervent hope that the world will have COVID-19 well in the rear-view mirror by then and that Bloomsday will be the same great event - - just on a different Sunday.  If you already registered but will be unable to join us in September, your entry will be extended to Bloomsday 2021.  Soon, we will send an email to those who have registered themselves, their family members, and/or their friends for Bloomsday 2020 to provide additional details and instructions. Again, no action will be necessary for those who already registered and will join us on September 20th. 

Just as we’ve had to postpone Bloomsday, we’re also having to postpone Marmot March and Jr. Bloomsday.   As we explore options for those events, more details will follow.   

Bloomsday 2020 will be an event to remember.  Be a part of that, celebrate with us, and show the world that Spokane is a special place that rises up even in the most unsettling of times.

Last minute changes are never easy, especially for an event as large as Bloomsday.  We are grateful for your patience and understanding as our team works to make the process as painless as possible for everyone. 

(03/18/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bloomsday Run Team
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Lilac Bloomsday 12K

Lilac Bloomsday 12K

2020 event is cancelled.The Lilac Bloomsday Run was born during the running boom that swept the nation in the late 1970s. Local runner Don Kardong, who moved to Spokane in 1974, competed in several national class road races before and after his participation in the 1976 Olympic Marathon, and in the fall of 1976 he suggested to a local reporter...

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