Sydney McLaughlin, who turned pro this past summer and signed with New Balance last month, has chosen a coach. The 19-year-old McLaughlin, one of the biggest track and field stars in the world, will be coached by Olympic gold medalist Joanna Hayes, Sydney's mother Mary confirmed on Tuesday night. Hayes, the 2004 Olympic gold medalist in the 100 hurdles in Athens, is currently a volunteer assistant track and field coach for sprints and hurdles at the University of Southern California. This past spring, Hayes helped the USC women capture its second NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championship. McLaughlin, who graduated from NJ's Union Catholic High School in 2017 and now lives in Los Angeles, became the youngest U.S. track and field athlete to compete in the Olympics in 44 years when she advanced to the semifinals of the 400 hurdles in Rio in 2016 when she was just 17 years old. Then after compiling one of the greatest high school careers in U.S. history, McLaughlin turned in one of the most remarkable seasons by a freshman in NCAA history at Kentucky this past year. At the NCAA Championships on June 9th, McLaughlin won the women's 400 hurdles in 53.96 and followed that up about an hour later by splitting 50.03 on the fourth place 4x400 relay to help the Wildcats finish fourth in the final team standings. After the NCAA Championships, McLaughlin announced her intention to forego her remaining three years of college eligibility and turn pro. In addition to her NCAA title, McLaughlin ran 52.75 when she won the 400 hurdles at the SEC Championships on May 13, which is an NCAA record, a World Junior record, and the No. 1 time in the world for the season. She also ran personal bests of 50.07 in the flat 400, 22.39 in the 200, a wind-aided 11.07 in the 100, and ran three sub 50 splits this past spring. (11/28/2018) ⚡AMP
Long-distance runners have a reputation for being as wacky as they are driven. Gary Allen is proof positive of both.
As coach of the Mount Desert Island Middle School cross-country team, he trains his squad mostly by playing zombie invasion games behind the school. He has a screaming-loud stocking hat for every occasion.
He’s ebullient and sometimes long-winded but knows how to affect reticence with an authenticity that would make any fellow Mainer proud. He treats everyone like his new best friend and begins each conversation with, “Hi. I’m Gary Allen.”
Allen has run a hundred marathons and won his age group in more than a few. In fact, he is one of a few worldwide who have run a sub-three-hour marathon in five different decades.
He’s the founder of the Mount Desert Island Marathon and the Great Run, a six-hour ultramarathon where competitors simply run back and forth on Great Cranberry Island as many times as they can. But none of that means much to the 4,500 people who call Millinocket, Maine USA home.
When they talk about a marathon, they’re talking about the one Allen first organized last year — the one that put the town on the long-distance map after Runner’s World picked up the story. The one that has more than 1,000 people clamoring to fly across the country for the opportunity to run here on December 10.
Like most of Allen’s schemes, this one started on a whim. Around Thanksgiving last year, he read yet another newspaper article characterizing Millinocket’s economic woes.
“It’s not like I set out to find a little town to help. It’s more like a little town found me.” There’ve been a lot of those articles since the Great Northern paper mill closed here in 2008. In the years since, Millinocket has become a symbol for the failure of America’s manufacturing monotowns.
That doesn’t sit well with locals here. And it rubbed Allen the wrong way last fall too. Millinocket needed a boost, sure. But not a handout.
So Gary Allen decided to do what Gary Allen does best: he organized an impromptu marathon. This race was open to all and charged no entry fee. Instead, Allen suggested that participants take the money they would have spent on registration and spend it in Millinocket.
He didn’t advertise any of this except to post it to his Facebook page. Nonetheless, about 50 of his friends agreed to show up for what may well have been America’s first flash-mob marathon. Allen mapped the course on Google Earth.
It’s a gorgeous one: a lazy loop with lots of views of Katahdin and several miles on the iconic Golden Road, a 96-mile stretch of gravel connecting Millinocket and the Canadian border, before it drops back down into town for a finish at Veterans Memorial Park.
Allen warned participants that they’d need to be totally self-sufficient during the race. He printed out slips of paper detailing how to stay on the course. After they were done running, he figured they could have lunch or do some holiday shopping, then fuel up their cars and head home.
Millinocket might not even realize they’d been there. But word got out around in close-knit Millinocket. By the time Allen rolled into town, local businesses had emblazoned signs welcoming the runners. Locals set up a water station around the 5-mile mark and stood for hours guiding runners on the course and directing traffic. A cheering section assembled at the finish.
In other words, the marathon flash mob got flash-mobbed by the town they were supposed to be helping. And in that moment was born an unlikely love affair between one of Maine’s most charismatic runners and a town looking to get back on its feet.
After last year’s race, townspeople asked Allen if he’d organize another one. He agreed. And he said he thought he could make it bigger, better.
Earlier this year, he returned to Millinocket with a surveyor who could certify the course as an official Boston Marathon qualifier — the only one in the country without an entry fee.
As it turned out, Allen’s hastily drawn loop on Google Earth was less than 50 yards off the exact required distance. While Allen and the surveyor were in town, a total stranger offered the two men a house to stay in for as long as they needed.
That, says Allen, is the spirit of Millinocket — and Mainers in general, for that matter. For decades, the town was known as the “Magic City,” a nod to how it seemed to have sprung up overnight in what had previously been untrammeled wilderness.
Millinocket, founded in 1901, is but a blip. And like the Greek goddess Athena, it seemed to emerge fully formed from the mill itself — first as dozens of tar-paper shacks and rooming houses; soon after, as an Anytown, USA, with a bustling main drag and orderly blocks of houses. (Photo by Michael Wilson) (11/28/2018) ⚡AMPby Kathryn Miles
Christopher Weir, is an avid marathon runner, among many other athletic pursuits. Chris, a successful Dallas businessman, has run the Dallas marathon four times and the New Orleans marathon once during the last few years. Running and finishing a marathon is special but after you’ve done it again and again, with thousands of others at each event; what do you do for an encore? Well, leave it to Chris to transcend from the mundane to the extraordinary. On December 13, the fourteenth Antarctic Ice Marathon will take place just a few hundred miles from the South Pole at the foot of the Ellsworth Mountains, the highest mountain ranges in Antarctica. Chris Weir will be on the starting line this year. He has been training by running in the ice-cold environment of a produce plant in Dallas. For Chris, the journey begins by flying to Punta Arenas, Chile on December 10. During the next 24 hours he, and the 54 other competitors from 14 countries around the world, will undergo a briefing about the marathon and the conditions under which it will be run. On December 12, the entire group will be transported by private jet for the four hour flight to Union Glacier, Antarctica, the icy location of the marathon. Union Glacier Camp is only accessible by air and the aircraft will land on a naturally-occurring ice runway on the Union Glacier, where competitors will take their first steps in Antarctica. Then, they will climb aboard a specially adapted van for a five mile ride to camp, where final preparations will be made for the epic event the following day. (11/28/2018) ⚡AMP
For 23-year-old Angad Chandhok, life changed after getting diagnosed with type-1 diabetes. Diagnosed with diabetes in June 2013, Angad set his mind to not losing hope, and to fight back. Interestingly, Angad diagnosed himself by learning about the symptoms on the internet. "Endocrinologists play an important role in diabetes management, but over a period of time we as patients learn so much about it by ourselves," says Angad. He is a marathon runner and has participated in many full marathons. By taking a condition that needs management by the minute, along with a rigorous physical activity, Angad's purpose and achievements increase with every new day. He is now practicing for the upcoming Mumbai Marathon 2019. “Running helped me to manage my condition better. I decided to run Tata Mumbai Marathon earlier this year and later on ran the Medtronic Twin City Marathon in the US. During my first marathon, I could barely run a few miles and was in need of injectable insulin. Yet, I completed it and that was one of the happiest days of my life. At every step, I learned about my health condition. I am physically and mentally much more strong now," says Angad. From not being able to run 100m to now practicing for a 42.2km marathon, Angad has achieved a lot with diabetes. (11/27/2018) ⚡AMP
Honolulu Marathon world-record holder Gladys Burrill celebrated her centennial on Saturday during two 30-minute tributes. The first tribute was during a 9 a.m. breakfast and the second tribute was at 12:30 p.m., accompanied by a vegetarian lunch. During both tributes, the church and greater Manoa community joined her to celebrate her life journey and milestones through a pictorial history, along with interviews of both Burrill and her family. The Honolulu Japanese SDA Church says this is its way to honor "Gladyator"on her 100th birthday. Since 2004, Burrill participated in the Honolulu Marathon seven times, finishing the course five times. Her last one was in 2010 when, at age 92, she received the Guinness World Record as the oldest female marathon finisher. “Age is only a number,” Burrill says. She credits her positive attitude for giving her the strength to start running marathons. “It’s important to think positive and to dream. Just get out there and walk or run,” she advises. Good advice for her five children, 18 grandchildren, and 34 great-grandchildren. Burrill credits her good health, including a healthy mind and erect posture, to her faith and her healthy lifestyle. She currently walks ten miles a week and enjoys a mostly plant-based diet. (11/27/2018) ⚡AMP
Steve Polansky never looks back — except, of course, when he is at the starting line of the California International Marathon, which begins on an uphill slope. “I like to line up and look back at the field,” says the 72-year-old resident of suburban Sacramento. “I can see thousands of runners behind me. It’s awe inspiring and takes my breath away.” The CIM, an annual race from Folsom to Sacramento, is one marathon that Polansky knows very well, having run it for 35 straight years. In fact, the past president of Mosaic Law Congregation in Sacramento is one of only 12 runners who have participated in every CIM since it began in 1983. “I signed up and loved the course so much that I contacted [the Sacramento Running Association],” recalls Polansky, a New York native and a retired obstetrician-gynecologist. In turn, he immediately was asked by the association, “Can you be a member of the board?” It was a response that definitely hit home for the regular synagogue-goer. “How often in Jewish life do you become president of something just because you showed an interest?” he says. This year’s California International Marathon is scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 2, with the fastest runners finishing the 26.2-mile course about 135 minutes later — or about seven hours before the first night of Hanukkah begins. When the CIM premiered 36 years ago, 1,600 runners participated (and Polansky finished in 3 hours, 16 minutes). The course from Folsom Dam to the state Capitol has remained unchanged since 1983, and this year, with some 13,000 people signed up, the CIM has become the 10th largest marathon in the country, Polansky says. (11/27/2018) ⚡AMP
The Scottish 2:10 marathoner was set to race for the first time over 26.2 miles following April’s Commonwealth Games marathon on the Gold Coast, Australia. “I’ve had a strong build up to Fukuoka Marathon and was really looking forward to toeing the line with some of the world’s best marathoners once again,” said Hawkins in a statement. “I witnessed the amazing running scene when I won the Marugame Half Marathon in 2017 so was excited to be returning for the second time to a country I love to compete in. “Unfortunately, a slight niggle in my right hamstring has occurred this past week preventing me from running at race pace. “I’m therefore gutted to have to make the tough call to withdraw from the race. Thanks to the race organisers for the invitation and everything they have done for me up to now and I wish everyone competing an excellent race weekend.” (11/26/2018) ⚡AMP
It was a great day for Kenya here today, as runners from the African nation dominated the Penang Bridge International Marathon (PBIM) 2018 in both the men’s and women’s full marathon (42km) categories. James Cherutich Tallam clocked two hours and 24 minutes in the open men’s category; while Peninah Kigen finished in two hours and 46 minutes in the open women’s category. “I did not expect to win the race, especially in the final 4km, due to the bad weather. “However, I am grateful for this victory. I will use the cash money for my children’s education back home,” he said when met after the prize giving ceremony. Tallam, a professional athlete, took home RM22,000 in cash and a trophy. The prize was presented by Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas. Meanwhile, a Penangite emerged tops in the Malaysian women’s full marathon category. Accountant Loh Chooi Fern, 26, clocked three hours and 17 minutes and took home RM22,000 in cash and a trophy. “This is my third victory in the same category in the PBIM. “This is also my best personal time since I first took part three years ago,” she said. (11/26/2018) ⚡AMP
Jeffrey Price is setting a big goal for himself. “This year I had brain cancer — had — but now I do not.” And he’s not letting that diagnosis slow him down. He’s running 40 miles in the Black Diamond ultramarathon. “I have to wear this machine. I’m carrying it on my back,” Price said. That device is called Optune. It sends electric pulses through Price’s brain to stop cancer cells from growing. The race director says this ultramarathon is different from others. “It’s smaller than most ultramarathons,” acting race director Jill Williams said. “It’s close-knit. Most people that are running it are in this group called Run it Fast.” Outside of Alamo was the halfway point for the race where runners could fuel up with drinks and snacks before heading out for the next 20 miles. The race went through Gadsden, Alamo and Bells before ending back in Jackson. Price says most of all this is a challenge for himself. “It’s been a blessing, and we’re trying to prove to all the users that you don’t have to stop doing everything that they want to do.” (11/25/2018) ⚡AMP
Moroccan Soud Kanbouchia took the top spot in Japan's second-biggest marathon Sunday Nov 25, breaking the Osaka Marathon women's course record to win in 2:31:19. In the early going Kanbouchia had company from Hiroko Yoshitomi and Kasumi Yoshida on mid-2:27 pace, but with a surge at halfway she was on her own and stayed that way until the finish. Yoshitomi, this year's Boston Marathon 10th-place finisher who set a PB and CR of 2:30:09 two weeks ago at the Fukuoka Marathon and, incredibly, won the Ohtwara Marathon on Friday in 2:37:22, dropped off after 10 km to settle into mid-2:30s pace. Yoshida lasted longer but slowed dramatically after 25 km and was quickly retaken by Yoshitomi. But from the main pack of women behind them club runner Haruka Yamaguchi emerged to run both down, running almost even splits to take 2nd in 2:34:12, a PB by over four minutes. Yoshitomi hung on 3rd in 2:34:39, almost three minutes faster than her time 48 hours earlier. Yoshida settled for 4th in 2:35:31. The men's race saw a five-man lead group made up of Kenyans Charles Munyeki and Julius Mahome, Moroccan Abdenasir Fathi, and Japanese amateurs Shingo Igarashi and Hideyuki Ikegami. Hideyuki dropped off after 15 km before a surprise DNF. After hitting halfway in 1:05:22 Fathi surged to gap the rest of the lead group, from which Mahome became detached after 25 km.Munyeki and Igarashi worked together the rest of the way, and when Fathi began to fade after 30 km they started to reel him in. By 37 km they overtook him, and it went down to the very last kilometer before Munyeki dropped Igarashi to take the win in 2:14:11. Igarashi was 2nd in 2:14:19, the second-fastest time of his career. Fathi hung on to 3rd in 2:17:37, finishing just 20 seconds ahead of Akihiro Kaneko who took 31 seconds off his best for 4th in 2:17:57. (11/25/2018) ⚡AMP
Lonah Chemtai Salpeter smashed the course record at the 35th ASICS Firenze Marathon, an IAAF Bronze Label road race, on Sunday (25). The reigning European 10,000m champion clocked 2:24:17 to clip nearly four minutes from the previous record of 2:28:15 set by Slovenia’s Helena Javornik in 2002. Her performance was also a national record for Israel, shattering the 2:35:59 standard set by Elena Dolinin in Berlin two years ago. Salpeter dominated the race, winning by more than six minutes over Kenyan Caroline Chepkwony. Salpeter took the lead in the early stages, running with Gebiyanesh Gedamu from Ethiopia and Clementine Mukandanga from Rwanda, the trio passing 10 kilometres in 34:37 and 15 in 51:42. Salpeter and Gedamu reached the halfway mark in 1:12:38, but the Israeli started pushing the pace, building a gap of eight seconds over Gedamu (1:26:04 to 1:26:12) by 25 kilometres. Salpeter continued to pull away, extending her gap over Gedamu to one minute at 30 kilometres (1:43.16) and to more than four minutes five kilometres later, propelled by a 6:30 two-kilometre split between kilometres 33 and 35. She covered the challenging second half in 1:11:39 for a negative split to smash her previous personal best by 16 minutes. Her 2:24:17 performance was the sixth fastest time ever run on Italian soil and the fastest by a European this year. Salpeter set her previous best of 2:40:16 in Berlin in 2016, but recently showed good form with a half marathon PB of 1:07:55 in Lisbon in October. This year she made her breakthrough improving all her career best times on the track running the 3000m in 8:42.88, the 5000m in 15:17.81, the 10,000m in 31:33.03 at the European 10000m Cup in London last May. She won the 10000m European title in Berlin in 31:43.29. “The crowd gave me strong support along the course,” said Salpeter, who grew up in Eldoret, Kenya, and moved to Israel in 2008. “I did not fear the rain, because I was ready with any condition. Firenze is the springboard event of my marathon career.” Chepkwony clocked 2:30:46 for second ahead of Mukandanga who clocked 2:30:59 to knock nearly five minutes from her previous lifetime best. Croatia’s Nikolina Sustic improved her PB to 2:41:51, finishing fourth. (11/25/2018) ⚡AMP
Full circle. I am becoming Fred Dingley. He was my first cross country coach at Lee Academy way back in 1969.
One late summer day a couple of years ago I headed for my usual early evening run at a favorite trail in Connecticut.
A welcome hint of fall was in the air. Dry, refreshing Canadian high pressure, breezes and gentle fall-like light had crept in for the first time in months, replacing the laser-bright sun and stifling humidity of a hot summer.
The trail I often run extends along the Pequonnock River Valley and the beautiful weather had it abuzz with happy runners, cyclists and walkers, a full house in the parking lot.
At the top of the short hill leading from the lot to the trailhead; 15 young men from a local high-school cross country team gathered, bare-chested, stretching against a rail fence.
The 14 year-old newbie kids tried not to be conspicuous in their very presence but also were clearly checking out their bigger, stronger and more confident 17-18 year-teammates. The older ones innocently full of themselves, utterly oblivious to the younger kids.
They all started running just before I shuffled up onto the trail. Within the first half mile I could already see the smaller, slower runners beginning to fall off the pace.
I caught the first kid soon after. For a minute I was back in the early fall of 1969. My first coach, yes Fred Dingley, was the headmaster of the school.
In his 60s, he ran with the team some days. I was 14, 4’9” and weighed maybe 90lbs. I lacked fitness, confidence or any knowledge whatsoever.
Mr. Dingley caught me a few times in my first few runs that September and always had a word of encouragement as he passed.
He made me feel like if he could run 2-3 miles at his age I damn well could, even when I seriously doubted it two steps prior to him passing and three steps after he went by.
Fred Dingley's teams were a perennial power in Maine. State Champions my first 2 years. My next coach, Howie Richard, led a team to my third championship in 4 years. I was fortunate.
Early that first September I ran my first timed mile in 6:55. I proudly made my way to the top of the Junior Varsity by the end of the year and ran a 5:06 mile.
I won a race the next year and I will never forget being congratulated by the headmaster-coach in the school’s morning announcements.
Mr. Dingley retired a year later and I've always hoped he kept running for years after.
40 odd years later, I ran past the slower runners in the first couple of miles on the trail and made a point of doing what my coach had done; offering a quiet word of encouragement to each kid.
I wondered whether seeing a man in his 60s running by might do for one of them what it did for me years before.
Meanwhile, I also remembered how Howie Richard coached me as as a more accomplished runner 3 years later; he said when passing someone, pick up the pace, go by with certainty and show no sign of exertion, he explained, only slightly in jest, that "it demoralizes them a little and gives you an edge".
Maybe I should regret those ingrained competitive instincts but at more than 4 times the age of most I passed I think I should get a pass (no pun intended) for any insensitivity, real or imagined. I did try offer encouragement but that's a different thing, right? Can you intimidate someone (a little), feel better about your own remaining ability and give encouragement all at the same time? I hope so.
I have no idea whether the team I saw in Connecticut that pre-season evening ended up a top team that year. I was impressed that most of the older kids ran the same 8 miles I did.
Based on those I passed, I remember wondering whether I might still be able to make the JV team of a HS team. In reality the dead sprint at the beginning of a 3mi high-school cross country race would be a big problem.
If I had any hope I’d have to use experience and wisdom (if any) to try and overcome my physical ability with a late charge from behind at the end. The real problem; the youngest and slowest kids I saw were all going to get much faster and stronger in coming months. I would not.
At just past age 60 I was still holding up ok. I could still manage 5-12 miles almost daily. A few longer runs crept below 8 minutes per mile, I even managed a 6:25 mile at the end of one good run. It all took a sudden turn with an unexpected health problem a short time after this particular evening.
Having successfully dealt with my issues I’m again able to run or run/walk for shorter distances on the trail weekly, slower but just as happily. I still see competitive runners and teams, maybe the same ones; a few looking like collegiate runners home for a visit, some likely former undeveloped youngsters but not so much anymore and of course always a new crop of nervous 14 year old prospects.
As for me, maybe I should just be happy being Fred Dingley.
(Editor’s note: Larry Allen on Running is a regular MBR feature sharing the wisdom of Larry Allen, a 50 year accomplished runner and artist. He is currently participating in the third Run The World Challenge.) (11/25/2018) ⚡AMPby Larry Allen
Michael Johnson has spoken of his anger after discovering he had suffered a stroke but insists an Olympic mindset will enable him to make a full recovery. The 51-year-old former Olympic sprint champion says he is “pretty much back to normal” after suffering a transient ischemic attack in September. Johnson, once the fastest man on the planet over 200m and 400m, said he had finished a training session at home when he felt “a strange tingling down my arm and left side”. He “decided not to take any chances” and headed straight to hospital. “After the MRI scan, I almost fell off the table. I could not walk or move my left leg,” he told the BBC. “The numbness of my arm was intense too. I could not feel my arm and moving my fingers was problematic. It was a lot of emotions. Once I was told I had suffered a stroke and I could not walk things get immediately real. “You start to think: ‘What is my life going to be like going forward? What is my quality of life going to be like? Will I be able to dress myself? Will I be able to take care of myself or will my loved ones have to take care of me?’ “I had a great team of doctors and they said that is what all stroke victims ask but unfortunately there is no answer to the questions – only time will tell. Some people make a full recovery, some make a partial recovery and how much time that takes there is no answer. That is difficult to hear and pretty scary. He added: “Doctors said the best chance of recovery was to immediately get into physical therapy. I did that two days after the stroke and I got out of bed with assistance and got behind the walker around the hospital - and ironically it was around 200m. I timed it and it took me around 15 minutes to cover that distance. (11/24/2018) ⚡AMP
The 25-year-old has not raced since he clinched the bronze medal in Florence last year after he sustained an ankle injury. However, he returns feeling strong as he intends to recoup the missed opportunities hoping he will prove his mantle and secure a slot in the Kenya team to the World Championships next year in Qatar. "I have recovered and ready for the assault of the Florence course," Kirwa said on Thursday before departing to Italy. "It is about preparations and I have done my part and though there are some top names lined up, I believe the training has been good to withstand any challenge." Kirwa was the third-place finisher in the men's race last year. The Kenyan clocked his personal best of 2:06:14 in Frankfurt back in 2009 but ran 2:07:44 as recently as 2015 in finishing fifth at the Paris marathon. Later he was second at the Toronto Waterfall marathon in Canada clocking 2:09:01. But that will come under focus when he lines up at the Florence marathon course on Sunday. Kirwa will be up against China's Xiamen marathon champion Dejene Debela and Bonsa Dida from Ethiopia. After setting a personal best time of 2:07:10 in Eindhoven in 2017, Debela has won two marathons in China this year, clocking 2:11:22 in Xiamen and 2:12:08 in Beijing. "I hope to run well in Florence and see if I can defend my title in Xiamen next year. I believe I will have recovered, but it will be dependent on the performance in Italy," he said. (11/24/2018) ⚡AMP
It’s really impossible to pick one race or run as best or most memorable in a 50 years of running. I guess if I had to pick one thing it would come from the occasionally feeling one gets in a run or race, when it’s suddenly well within your ability and training, just effortless and fast, finding yourself perfectly balanced and feeling like you are floating above the ground and periodically reaching down with one foot or the other and giving yourself a little push to maintain your momentum and with little or no limits to how long you could keep it up.
Pure magic and joy whether in a training run or race. At it’s best “that feeling” was somewhat elusive when even a very fit young runner and certainly more so as we age.
There is still a strong pull to get out every day to try and find a glimpse of it regardless of the likelihood that you won’t. I’ve always thought that B.F. Skinner’s psychological studies of the power of variable, unpredictable patterns of reinforcement to modify our behavior were likely at work and I’m good with that.
My running friends and peers of a certain age and vintage share a little joke about the rules of gravity of middle age (and beyond) being clearly quite different than anything Isaac Newton theorized.
(Editor’s note: Larry Allen is a 50 year runner and artist (self portrait). His wisdom and knowledge of our sport is impressive and this is why we asked him to regularly share his thoughts here - Larry Allen on Running. He is also participating for the third time in our Run The World Challenge.) (11/24/2018) ⚡AMPby Larry Allen
An Alaska runner hit a milestone that took him 16 years to reach when he crossed the finish line at a Tulsa, Oklahoma, marathon. The Juneau Empire reports that when Juneau runner John Kern finished the Williams Route 66 Marathon this week, he completed his goal of running a marathon in all 50 states. The retired City and Borough of Juneau Capital Transit superintendent ran his first marathon in 2002. Kern continued running, aiming to qualify to race in the Boston Marathon. That goal led him to seek out races in other states, and a few years later he was at the starting line in Boston. Kern's next goal was to run 10 marathons in 10 different states, sending him a trajectory to racing in all 50 states. (11/24/2018) ⚡AMP
Race organizers are rolling out a new route in 2018 that leans heavily on the Burke Gilman Trail but will no longer include the old course’s path through Capitol Hill via Interlaken. The changes mean crowds that used to gather on the northern fringes of Capitol Hill to mark mile 22.5 of the race will no longer fill Interlaken with the annual final boost of cheering and enthusiasm. They come after light rail construction on I-90 eliminated the bridge from the marathon course last year. Organizers responded to feedback about elevation gains and further tweaked the maps with a whole new layout in 2018. “We’re really excited about the changes, and we think you will be too,” organizers write. “We listened to your feedback about last year’s course, and we worked to make this one more runner (and walker) friendly, with less hills. That’s right. This year’s course is much flatter than last year.” The result for half marathon runners is a change from a 1,075-foot gain in 2017 to an 807-foot gain on this year’s new course. Marathoners are trading in a whopping 1,468-foot gain for the new, flatter rise of 1,165 feet. (11/24/2018) ⚡AMP
The 29-year-old has this year set Israeli records at various distances from the 1500m to the half marathon and she will be looking to add another to her collection this weekend. Before winning the continental 10,000m title in Berlin, she set a European-leading national record of 31:33.03 to win the European Cup in London in May. At the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships Valencia 2018 earlier in the year she set a national record of 1:08:58 and reduced that mark to 1:07:55 in Lisbon last month. Salpeter is yet to fully master the marathon, though. She has completed three marathons to date – her one failure to finish came at the 2016 Olympic Games – and her finishing times have all been between 2:40:16 and 2:40:22, a surprisingly consistent series of times for someone who appears capable of going much quicker for 26.2 miles. This weekend Salpeter is aiming at improving the course record of 2:28:15 set in 2002 by Helena Javornik. She could even challenge the European-leading time of 2:25:25 set by European champion Volha Mazuronak. Salpeter will take on Kenya’s Caroline Jepchirchir Chepkwony, who set her marathon PB of 2:27:37 in Lubljana in 2013, Ethiopia’s Ayele Gebaynesh, who has a career best of 2:26:54, and Kenya’s 2:27:07 performer Sarah Jebet. Croatia’s ultramarathon specialist Nikolina Sustic will run her fourth Italian race this autumn after Venice, Turin and Verona. The world 100km champion set a marathon PB of 2:42:44 at the European Championships in Berlin, improved to 2:42:10 in Turin at the start of November and last week clocked 2:42:26 in Verona. (11/23/2018) ⚡AMP
" in "ultrarunner" doesn't modify runner. It refers to the distance of the race, which is ultra far. In the case of Travis Thompson, however, it would be fair to call him, "ultra," too. Once a Taos Tiger soccer player in the class of 2007, Thompson is now a passionate runner. This year's 55-kilometer Canyon de Chelly Ultramarathon (Oct. 13) in northeastern Arizona was Thompson's first ultra. He finished the 34.18-mile race in four hours and 40 minutes, an impressive third-place in a field of 134 finishers at a pace of under eight minutes and 15 seconds per mile. The race is organized by Shaun Martin, a well-known Navajo runner and educator featured in the recently released film "3,100: Run and Become." All proceeds from the race, which is so popular that registration is by lottery, support running programs for Native American youth. According to TrailRunner magazine, Martin runs "to celebrate life, to pray and to learn." It's hard to imagine a better setting than Canyon de Chelly. (11/23/2018) ⚡AMP
On a brisk holiday morning, more than 11,000 runners, walkers and volunteers kicked off their Thanksgiving festivities by participating in the Invesco QQQ Thanksgiving Day Half Marathon, 5K and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia One Mile & 50-Meter Dash. The celebration culminated with a brand new exciting finish line on the football field inside Georgia State Stadium near downtown Atlanta with family and friends cheering on loved ones from the stands. The event has become a tradition for many including half marathon winner Geraint Davies. Now a resident of Boston, Davies, 28, graduated from Emory University and returned to Atlanta for the holiday to run the race and see his parents. Davies broke the finisher tape in 1 hour, 12 minutes and 23 seconds. No stranger to today’s event, this marks Davies third Thanksgiving win in Atlanta. He last won the race in 2015. But this is his first finishing on the Georgia State Stadium field. “It was new and exciting,” he said in a news release. “Now the event combines two of my favorite things for the holiday; football and turkey.” On the women’s side, Grace Tavani, 22, took first, breaking the tape in 1:22:59. Tavani, currently a University of Georgia cross country runner said she was optimistic as she stood on the starting line this morning. (11/22/2018) ⚡AMP
Funny thing about running. A lot of it is solitary and we all thrive on being alone so its fine, at least part of the time. Meanwhile there isn’t much better than the camaraderie of a group or team run.
Conversations wax and wane and the personal bonds formed and memories made are often inseparable and indelible. The miles disappear, the pace quickens and the distance covered grows, it’s somehow invariably easier to be inspired to do more as part of a group.
It seems like we runners need a little of both; the quiet of running alone, lost in thought but with a good dose of runs on a team or with a friend or friends. Both have a place and are magical in their own special way.
Bob Anderson’s MyBestRuns hosts a periodic online event, repeated through the year, called Run the World Global Challenge and it fosters what we do alone and the joy in being connected while doing it.
Each event involves a hundred runners or so from all over the planet having signed up and committed to a cyber team effort to accumulate the running and walking mileage necessary to circumnavigate the 24,901 miles around the planet earth over a couple of months.
Participants post a daily (or in the case of some serious athletes, multiple times daily) run or walk, with a picture and little diary entry. I think most of the miles by all involved are solitary but all as part of the team effort to accomplish a goal bigger than any one of us.
It’s a unique, fascinating and inspirational use of social media. It has motivated me personally to do more, to be earnest in my efforts to rehabilitate my body following some personal health issues. There is a commitment, low key personal accountability, a real sense of achievement and camaraderie as words of encouragement and quiet competition creep in as we each do our part to collectively make it around the world.
The often lovely posts feature photographs of places run and selfies taken that somehow serve to enlighten and makes the world a smaller and more peaceful place, slightly reminiscent of the way world travel does.
I’m midway through my third trip around the world since July. I’ve contributed a total of about 500 miles, about the distance from my adopted home in New York City to my native eastern Maine.
This third team has already made it 8,850 miles in the first 25 days of running and walking (and posting). We’ve done enough to make it roughly from California to Europe and at our current average of about 350 miles per day we will have made it around again on about January 8th of the new year.
If so it will have taken us a total of 71 days, a good 9 days faster than Jules Verne imagined and fantasized about back in 1873. Go team!
(Editor’s note: Larry Allen is a 50 year runner and artist (self portrait) who currently is dealing with a health issue.
His wisdom and knowledge of our sport is impressive and this is why we asked him to regularly share his thoughts here - Larry Allen on Running. You can also follow Larry on our RTW Challenge feed.) (11/22/2018) ⚡AMPby Larry Allen
Nutritionists look at what is easiest to stomach while on the move, “Stomach issues can be a major limiting factor for runners, but various strategies can be put in place to combat them,” says Peter Antonio, registered nutritionist at the University of Birmingham Sport. “Different fuelling strategies can leave you feeling energised, accomplished and ready for more. Gastrointestinal reflux is common, and can be aggravated by fatty and spicy foods, alcohol, caffeine and chocolate, especially when eaten on the day or close to your race. A low residue diet, such as white pasta, lean meat, white rice, tinned fruit and potatoes (skins removed) on the day before may be best for most runners. “During the race, ensure you stay well hydrated. If your stomach is upset following fluid intake, this most likely is due to you already being dehydrated. Learn by this for your next race. “Simple carbohydrates are the best main energy source – such as sports drinks, gels and energy bars. They are portable, practical and easy to consume; but test them before your race. Experiment with a 2-4% carbohydrate drink to begin with, and gradually increase. Beware of high fibre foods (some cereal bars, bread and fruit) and highly concentrated carbohydrate drinks, as these can cause issues.” It is very differcult to push yourself when your stomach is upset. If this happens you may not be able to pull out of it but learn from it for the next one. (11/22/2018) ⚡AMP
In frigid conditions, Clutching hand warmers to fend off the frigid cold, Edward Cheserek broke the course record, winning the 82nd Manchester Road Race in 21:16 Thursday morning. Cheserek, a 17-time NCAA champion from Flagstaff, Ariz., broke the record for the 4.748-mile race set by Aaron Braun (21:19) in 2012. It was his first time running Manchester. “I looked at the time, it was 21:17 or 16 and I thought that’s really OK,” said Cheserek, 24, who didn’t know he broke the record until somebody told him. “That’s a very good time.” Cheserek broke away from the pack at the top of the Highland Street hill and ran alone down Main Street toward the finish. Last year’s champion Paul Chelimo was second and Andy Butchart, who defied the elements by wearing a singlet and shorts, was third. Celliphine Chespol of Kenya was the women’s winner, outkicking last year’s winner Buze Diriba and 2016 winner Emily Sisson at the finish. It was the first road race for Chespol, 19, who is a steeplechaser. She ran the third fastest time (8:58.78 in the 3,000 meter steepchase in May 2017 at the Prefontaine Classic. “I’m so happy because this is my first time to run a road race,” Chespol said. It was about 16 degrees at the start but the wind chill lowered the temperatures to single digits. About 12,000 people ran and walked Thursday. (11/22/2018) ⚡AMP
, who is also the Daegu Marathon champion, had wanted to race in Xiamen, a southeastern province of Fujian in China in January, but his management has confirmed that he will be running earlier in Abu Dhabi just one month after breaking the world record in half marathon in Valencia. Kiptum broke the men’s world record clocking 58:18 to take five seconds off the mark set by Eritrea’s Zersenay Tadese in 2010. Now he hopes his top form will be enough to help him secure his second marathon title this year and in fast time. Valencia is also the city where Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei broke the women’s world record in 2017. “I would like to reach the midway in 1:02:30 and finish under 2:05,” he said of his plans for that race on Sunday. “I know the good shape my body is enjoying at the moment is optimum because I set a best time last month in Copenhagen but I was eager to run in Valencia. It has one of the flattest circuits I have ever run and I was confident of improving on my best. But to set the world record has exalted me.” (11/22/2018) ⚡AMP
The European and British marathon record-holder implies we shouldn't be surprised to see him in the starting blocks of the 10,000m as early as next year's world championships. Farah spoke to Britain’s Guardian newspaper yesterday, confirming he will return to London next year (he is considered the hometown favorite), and did not quash speculation that he could still dominate in the 10,000 meters. Farah, 35, has two Olympic golds in the 10,000m, as well as three world championships, and though he officially retired from the track after the 2016 Olympics, he’s quoted as saying that he missed the track, and that he felt he could still perform well. And further, that he would compete at whatever distance he felt would be most likely to win him a medal for Great Britain. (11/21/2018) ⚡AMP
British Olympian Steph Twell, who has been making a move to the roads after a fine career in cross country and track, will compete at the Valencia Marathon on December 2. Twell is now coached by Geoff Wightman and will take the step into the unknown after a strong seventh place finish at the Commonwealth Half Marathon in October. “At this stage of my career it just feels right to finally step up and challenge myself over the marathon distance,” says the 29 year-old, who currently training in America. “I’ve always had ambitions to see how I can fare over 26.2 miles. “Since becoming five times British 5000m champion on the track, I feel now would be a great time to dip my feet in the water to see if I can also have similar success on the roads.” For the Scottish athlete it will also be the realisation of long-held ambition fed by admiration for the likes of Paula Radcliffe. “Ever since winning the London Mini Marathon, having Paula Radcliffe as one of my early role models as well as always being able to cope with a healthy volume of training, I have had hopes to one day turn to this event and become a marathoner myself,” she says. (11/21/2018) ⚡AMP
If you think about it, the Turkey Trot makes perfect sense. It unites the caloric extravaganza that is Thanksgiving with the calorie-torching activity that is running. Perhaps that’s why in 2015, Thanksgiving eclipsed the Fourth of July as the most popular day to run a race, drawing nearly a million participants to more than 1,000 different events across the country. But while the Turkey Trot’s popularity is a modern phenomenon, its origins stretch all the way back to 1896. The inaugural trot took place 122 years ago in Buffalo, New York. The 8K cross-country race, hosted by the local YMCA that Thanksgiving Day, drew just six participants, and only four of them made it to the finish line. This year, more than a dozen turkey trots are taking place on Thanksgiving in Colorado. From Durango to Greeley to Colorado Springs, it’s a hugely popular day to run. The state’s biggest race, the Mile High United Way turkey trot, attracts more than 8,000 runners and walkers each year. One of the largest is the Turkey Trot in San Jose California. (11/21/2018) ⚡AMP
Former world half marathon champion and record holder Peres Jepchirchir feels she has regained her strength and will be returning to the international scene after staying out of competition for 18 months.
The 25-year-old former champion of the Yangzhou Half Marathon in China last competed at the Ras Al Khaimah International Half Marathon in the United Arab Emirates, where she set a world record of 65:06 in February 2017, reports Xinhua news agency.
"I have now returned into competition and am focusing my attention and training on recapturing the world record. It can go down than the current mark," said Jepchirchir, Tuesday from Eldoret.
Indeed the former world half marathon champion proved her fitness when she ran her second full 42km race at the Kass International Marathon in Eldoret and finished third clocking 2:46:15, improving on her previous mark by over a minute. Jepchirchir finished behind Beatrice Ruto (2:45:07) and winner Cynthia Jerop (2:39:16).
Her debut marathon was in 2013 in Kisumu where she posted a time of 2:47:33. "Now I know I am strong and can make it in any race. I'm eyeing an international race where I want to also do well before I enter into big marathon races," she said. Jepchirchir also has aspirations of regaining her world half marathon record which now stands at 64:51.
Jepchirchir lost the world half marathon record to compatriot Joyciline Jepkosgei 64:52 at the 2017 Prague Half Marathon before she slashed one second off her own mark to 64:51 at the Valencia Half Marathon in October. (11/21/2018) ⚡AMP
For his next great achievement since turning 50 in September, Will Smith traveled to Havana, Cuba to complete the city’s Marabana Half Marathon event. According to NBC Miami, around 6,000 participants sought to make it to the finish line on Sunday. In a quick statement to eager spectators, the award-winning actor said this moment has always been on his bucket list. Since finishing the run, Smith’s able to check off another longtime goal. “I’m excited,” the father-of-three said. “The energy is ridiculous in this place.” The annual Marabana Half Marathon was first established in 1987. Other countries that were greatly represented during this year’s edition included France, the United States, and Mexico. Cuba’s very own Henry Jaen finished the full marathon in first place. Smith clocked 2:30 for the half marathon. For 2018, the Independence Day star sought to do things that frighten him the most. From bungee jumping in the Grand Canyon to skydiving in Dubai, the veteran entertainer reassured fans that they must conquer their fear in order to reach life’s better parts. “You realize at the point of maximum danger is the point of minimum fear. It’s bliss. Why were you scared in your bed the night before? What do you need that fear for? Everything up to the stepping point, there’s actually no reason to be scared,” he said. “It only just ruins your day. The best things in life are on the other side of terror, on the other side of your maximum fear, are all of the best things in life.” (11/20/2018) ⚡AMP
Joshua Cheptegei, 22, set a new world record for 15k. The Ugandan distance athlete ran the 15K Sunday morning in 41:05 in Nijmegen, Netherlands at the Seven Hills Run. This is the third men’s world record to fall on the roads in 2018. Eliud Kipchoge clocked 2:01:39 for the marathon world record in Berlin, then Abraham Kiptum’s set the half-marathon world record of 58:18, and now Cheptegei’s 15K world record. Cheptegei took 8 seconds off of the previous mark. The Ugandan runner took the lead from the beginning, tiring his pacers out before the 5K mark, but managed to finish strong on his own. This was the runner’s fourth win at the Seven Hills Run. He closed his race in a solo 2:37 kilometre and averaged 2:44 for the entire run. (11/20/2018) ⚡AMP
Taye Girma and Parendis Lekapana captured victories at the Boulogne-Billancourt Christian Grangier Half-Marathon, an IAAF Bronze Label road race, on Sunday. Spearheaded by Precious Mashele of South Africa, who established a steady tempo from the gun, the lead pack of eight runners hit the five-kilometer and 10-kilometer marks in 14:31 and 29:02 respectively. Mashele, Olika Adugna, Yismaw Ayenu, Taye Girma, Josphat Tanui and 2008 Olympic steeplechase champion Brimin Kipruto were still in contention for the victory at 15 kilometres, reached in 43:32. Mashele broke up the field by ramping up the pace after about 17 kilometers and only Girma and Tanui were able to follow him. Then Girma began his decisive attack with two kilometers remaining, passing the 20-kilometers mark in 57:55, two seconds ahead of Tanui and six seconds ahead of Mashele. Girma maintained his pace in the closing stages and won in 1:00:52. It’s my first experience of a half marathon and I’m very happy to win today,” said the Ethiopian, who earlier this year set a 10km PB of 28:06. “I felt cold during most of the race.” Tanui came home second in 1:01:00 as Mashele rounded the podium in 1:01:14. Kipruto, now focusing on road running, finished fifth in 1:02:24. Parendis Lekapana produced a solo effort to prevail over compatriot Susan Jeptoo, whose PB of 1:09:02 is 11 seconds faster than Lekapana’s personal record. Lekapana, 27, set out well inside PB pace and covered the first five kilometres in 15:51, suggesting a possible finish time of 1:06:50. She was then timed in 32:21 at 10 kilometers, 42 seconds ahead of Jeptoo, and was still on pace to challenge the course record of 1:08:29 set by Rahma Tusa last year. The Kenyan couldn’t maintain that kind of speed and covered the next 10-kilometer section in 34:32, but she still held a 55-second lead over Jeptoo at 20 kilometres. Although the gap had reduced to 40 seconds, Lekapana, second last year, crossed the line in 1:10:46 to seal her second win of the year following a 1:09:23 success in Krems. Karine Pasquier of France finished third in 1:15:26. (11/20/2018) ⚡AMP
The winner of the men’s race was Tadesse Yai Dabi of New York in 2:14:46, and the women’s title went to Serkalem Abrha of Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2:32:52. Both winners set course records. The race draws crowds of up to 30,000 and many Canadians head south of the border to get in a late fall race. Boston 2018 winner Des Linden made it to Philadelphia for the marathon, but sadly her clothes did not. She joked in a tweet that she spent her per diem on food instead of replacement clothes. Linden was joined by Boston, New York and Olympic marathon winner Meb Keflezighi. The athletes led a shakeout on Saturday morning and presented at the expo. (11/20/2018) ⚡AMP
Melese´s compatriot, Abdiwak Tura took the men’s title following a breath-taking home stretch battle, securing the first Ethiopian double in the 19-year history of the IAAF Gold Label event. Running in cold and drizzly conditions with temperatures ranging from 10 to 12 degrees (50-54 degrees F), Melese built up a comfortable lead in the final five kilometers to wrap up the win in 2:20:37, beating the course record of 2:21:52 set three years ago by compatriot Tigist Tufa. The 28-year-old led a group of seven and maintained a fast pace in the early stage of the race, passing 10 kilometres in 35:30 and 20 kilometres in 1:06:30. The group was cut to three women at the 25-kilometre water station, which they reached in 1:23:35, and Muluhabt Tsega of Ethiopia quit the title contest after another two kilometres. The in-form Melese, whose PB of 2:19:36 from Dubai earlier this year made her the fastest entrant, kept pushing ahead. After several unsuccessful mini-breaks, she finally pulled away from Azmera Abreha to achieve the sole lead after 36 kilometres and never looked back before breaking the tape in style to celebrate her first marathon title in three years. Eight of the top 10 finishers in the women’s race achieved a lifetime best. The 20-year-old Abreha, also from Ethiopia, improved her PB by more than three minutes to finish second in 2:21:51. Third place went to Kenya’s Betty Lempus, who improved her PB by nearly six minutes to 2:23:41. In the men’s event, two sub-2:05 runners turned the race into a last 100-metre sprinting contest, with Tura rallying to edge fellow Ethiopian Tsegaye Mekonnen in front of the finish. The 21-year-old Tura clocked 2:09:20 to claim the title, 4:36 shy of his career best of 2:04:44 set in Dubai earlier this year. Mekonnen, a 2:04:32 performer, finished with the same clocking but had to settle for second place. Dickson Tuwei of Kenya finished third in 2:09:21. (11/20/2018) ⚡AMP
made his martahon debut in London in 2014 and he is set to compete at the London Marathon next year. The four-time Olympic gold medalist over 5,000m and 10,000m is coming to the end of his first full year as a dedicated marathon runner, which saw him set a European record of 2:05:11 at the Chicago Marathon in October. That result was an improvement on the 2:06:21 he had run in London six months previously, at the time a British record. (11/20/2018) ⚡AMP
I am Larry Allen. I am 64-year-old, a 50 year runner and doing the Run The World Challenge for the third time.
In 1965 I was living in Maine, Great Cranberry Island. A small, isolated, offshore island adjacent to a national park with only 80 residents. I started running there and achieved some success and in 2016 I was inducted into the Maine Running Hall of Fame.
Running is very important to me. Without intending to overstate it, running fits right in with eating, brushing my teeth and sleeping. Obsessed is another word although I think over the years the obsession has been moderated to a healthier place.
My mental health depends on it to an extent. My creativity, well being, problem solving, peacefulness and certainly my ability to stay centered and in balance with life itself have always been better when I’m running.
"He is a New York City artist, who retired as the director of publishing for the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan, “painted” in many different styles and left a truly remarkable body of work," a friend wrote.
I keep busy as an artist and as a part-time manager of the business affairs of my still very active wife Kristen Blodgette. She’s a professional musician, Musical Director, Conductor and Musical Supervisor, principally having been associated with Andrew Lloyd Webber for his Broadway and worldwide productions for over 30 years.
We live in New York City and in Fairfield County Connecticut. "Larry has run some impressive times over a wide range: 440 (51.7), 4:34 mile, 15:58 5k, 33:26 10k and a 2:46:20 marathon. He has directed many races, coached and written a lot about the sport.
When Larry turned 60 he wanted to run one more marathon," wrote Bob Anderson. I had a good year, a steady 60 miles per week. I was going to run Philly in November but about three weeks prior I tore a calf muscle severely and that was that. When I started running again about six weeks later I felt a profound fatigue and weakness that I didn’t recognize.
I assumed it was age but it was unsettling and very difficult. An old running friend and ER nurse saw the significant dip in my ability on a social media running tracking app and called me. She essentially did triage over the phone from 500 miles away and asked (told) me to immediately go the nearest walk-in clinic and to tell them she had sent me. After an EKG the doctor came into the exam room and said 'I don’t want to alarm you but you are in complete heart block and and we’ve called an ambulance.' I didn’t quite understand what heart block was but learned later that it was electrical in nature and not blocked arteries.
After emergency surgery suddenly I had a pacemaker. My cardiologist is Dr Paul Thompson, who in addition of being an esteemed physician is also an accomplished runner (15th at the 1976 Boston Marathon).
Dr. Thompson isn’t sure whether my heart block was as a result of damage done by a lot running for many years or a genetic predisposition or both but ironically he feels the strength of my heart and general health of the rest of my entire cardiovascular system as a result of years of running probably allowed me to survive the condition.
My goal today is to find the right clothes for a cold windy day and to run four miles in the woods. My goal for this week is to do it again on Friday and hopefully Sunday too. In between my goal is to briskly walk five or six miles on rest days and at a tempo that lets me recover enough to run the next day.
My goal this winter is to stay off the treadmill as much as I can and to get outside six days per week, to cover about 30 miles weekly and to enjoy every single mile. My goal for next spring is to be running the majority if not all of my miles. My goal for next summer and fall is to have it all be easier than it was this year. My goal for the year after that is to do another lap....and the same for every year.
(Editor's note: Larry's wisdom and knowledge of running is impressive and we are happy to announce that Larry will be contributing to My Best Runs on a regular basis - Larry Allen on Running. He also posts most days in the RTW Feed about his road to recovery.) (11/19/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Julius Kipyego Keter, who finished second at the 2017 Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon and Edinburgh Marathon champion Julius Kiplagat Korir will race this year’s Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon slated for October 28 in Nairobi. Keter, who is yet to compete this year, won the Mérida Marathon in Mexico in January last year in 2:21:22, before finishing second at Hong Kong’s Standard Chartered Marathon in 2:10:34 a month later. Keter would then settle for second again at the Santiago de Chile Marathon in a personal best 2:09:55 in April while Korir, who won Edinburgh Marathon in 2:17:13 last year, is fresh from claiming victory at Las Palmas Gran Canaria Marathon in 2:18:14 in Spain. Speaking during the sponsorship launch at Uhuru Park, Nairobi on Thursday, Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon local organising committee chairman, Peter Gitau disclosed that Keter and Kori are part of the 10,000 participants, who have so far registered for the event. (11/19/2018) ⚡AMP
Nairobi Marathon is an annual road running competition over the marathon distance held in October in Nairobi, Kenya. First held in 2003, the competition expanded and now includes a half marathon race along with the main race.
It was part of "The Greatest Race on Earth", fully sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank. The other three legs of this four-marathon race...more...
became the first American woman to win the Boston Marathon
in 33 years. On a cold and rainy day in Massachusetts, Linden didn’t have much belief that she could win the 122nd version of the race. She even slowed down early into the race to wait her teammate, Shalane Flanagan, so that they could both catch back up to the elite pack together. The weather conditions were very bad and the Boston Globe called it “the worst weather in Boston Marathon history.” After Linden and Flanagan caught back up to the pack, a surprising thing happened. 35-years-old Linden who trains in Michigan, began to pull away. She would end up winning the marathon in 2:39:54. Most recently Desiree was one of four Americans to finished in the top seven at the New York City Marathon. The website Sport Techie spoke with Desiree about Data Versus Disconnection and other matters. “Running is still a pure sport where you can go out with just your shoes and kind of disconnect for a long time, which is refreshing in today’s world,” says Desiree. “But then you can implement technology as you go and take as as much data as you want. The range is different for everyone. It would be really neat to have real-time tracking in the race via a mechanism in clothes or shoes. They could give you splits during the race every 5k or so, and there could be something in the shoe that could real-time track runners so that people could see heart rate and cadence during the race. I think that’d add an interesting graphic during race broadcasts.” How about the Balance Between Innovation and Ability? “A lot of big companies (like NIKE) are attempting to break the two-hour marathon barrier,” she says, “and see the shoe as a place to really make that jump. There’s definitely a movement in shoe technology. I think there’s a lot of brands trying to catch up in that race. The question is how much do you let it impact your sport? Is the shoe doing the work or is it still the athlete? It’ll be interesting to watch and see how governing bodies decide if and when technology is taking over the actual capacity of the runner.” (11/18/2018) ⚡AMPby Jen Booton @ SportTechie.com
Silicon Valley Leadership Group CEO Carl Guardino has had high hopes for the 14th annual Applied Materials Silicon Valley Turkey Trot. But with the Thanksgiving morning race just days away, his thoughts have naturally turned toward the tragic losses suffered by people affected by the wildfires in Butte County and elsewhere — and the blanket of particulate-filled air that has been choking the Bay Area. But for now, Guardino said Thursday’s race will go on as planned — with up to 25,000 participants on the streets of downtown San Jose. “While we are all devastated by the fires that are plaguing our state, and concerned about the current air quality from those fires, we continue to be told by air quality officials that the air quality should once again be at healthy levels on Thanksgiving morning,” Guardino said. Potential rain midway in the week could help clear skies in time for the race. If anything changes, race organizers will work to quickly get the word out through their website, social media and email. This was gearing up to be a big year for the Turkey Trot, as the Silicon Valley Leadership Group Foundation had embarked on “Mission $1 Million,” with a stretch goal of distributing that amount to its five nonprofit beneficiaries: Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties, the Santa Cruz County Food Bank, Healthier Kids Foundation, the Health Trust and Housing Trust Silicon Valley. In the race’s first 13 years, it has donated $7.8 million and has come close to the $1 million mark the past three years. (11/17/2018) ⚡AMP
Long-distance running is a lonely sport, and Santa Clara’s Matty Gregg is running a long way!. "Oh you're crazy! That’s what I get,” said Gregg. The 40 year old Apple Engineer left his job of 13 years on election day in Cupertino to embark on a 5,000 plus mile run across America. 275 days on his feet! The 22 mile a day trek will take him through 25 states as he tours much of the Southern U.S. with his final stop in his home state of New Hampshire in July of 2019. “It’s a bucket-list item for me and I just turned 40. It’s something completely out of the norm. Something very different,” said Gregg. It’s different alright, but not for Gregg who has run over 40 ultra-marathons and pounded out nearly 4,000 road miles. The difference on this 9 month journey is that it marks the beginning of his new political career. His goal is to meet the U.S. voters head on and find out why our country is so divided. Gregg says we need change. “It seems like we don’t lead anymore as a nation with kindness. I would just like to see us take a step back and assume positive intent a bit more, and start with that premise.” The wisdom he gleans from town to town Gregg says will energize him along the way and ultimately mold his platform for office in New Hampshire where he hopes to create positive change. “I think it will be very important for me to meet people in remote towns in America in general. And I think they are going to make a difference in my life as much as I hope to someday make a difference in their's.” (11/17/2018) ⚡AMP
The 2018 North Face Endurance Challenge Championship, scheduled for Saturday, November 17 in the San Francisco Bay area, has been cancelled due to poor air quality from the surrounding wildfires. The event included a trail marathon, 50K and 50-mile (80K) championship race. The region has been experiencing low air quality from the Camp fire in Butte County, 260K northeast of the race site, which has now caused at least 63 deaths and displaced 52,000 people from their homes. The entire town of Paradise, Califonria (22,000 population) was totally destoryed. The fire is still only 40% contained. The race has a cash prize of $30,000 USD. The organizers have decided to donate the prize money, prize clothing, and food and drinks to firefighting relief efforts. (11/16/2018) ⚡AMP
Haile Gebrselassie has announced his resignation as president of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation (EAF).
The long-distance running great, who was two years into his four-year term, confirmed his decision to resign in a statement posted to Twitter on Wednesday.
“I became a president of the EAF because I wanted to do something back for my sport; athletics is my passion,” he wrote. “However, some people were making the work impossible, so it is better to leave.”
The 45-year-old had a long and successful competitive athletics career which spanned 23 years, since 1992 when he won the 5000m and 10,000m titles at the World Junior Championships. He went on to set 27 world records and 61 Ethiopian records, as well as win two Olympic gold medals and eight world titles both indoors and out.
Gebrselassie will be replaced as president by the Ethiopian Athletics Federation’s vice-president, two-time Olympic 10,000m gold medallist Derartu Tulu. (11/16/2018) ⚡AMP
There are over 1400 marathons held annually around the world including the upcoming Philadelphia Marathon. Here are some tips to help you reach your personal goal. Be sure to wear shoes that have good support and are lightweight. Comfortable socks are also important if you wear them. Socks and shoes should be tested in a pace run to help prevent blisters and sore feet. Your local running store can help fit you. Chill out and avoid stress in the days leading up to the race. Make sure to stay hydrated. In the days before the race get your body used to the routine and run at the same time of day as the start of the race. Mimic the course and go on runs that share the same course as the race. Eat carb-rich foods such as pasta, potatoes, bread, fruit, fruit juice and yogurt as well as other low-fat treats and sports drinks. Stretch gently 15 minutes before the start of the race. Focus on your calves, hamstrings, glutes and lower back. Run the first few miles 10 to 15 seconds per mile slower than your goal pace to preserve glycogen for later to help you finish strong. Once you finish and if this is your first race of 26.2 miles (42k), you can now call yourself a marathoner. (11/16/2018) ⚡AMP
Ethiopia’s Melese trimmed more than three minutes off her PB to finish third in Dubai in 2:19:36. She also clocked 2:27:47 to finish second at the Yellow River Estuary International Marathon in Dongying, China. Sunday’s race will be her third marathon of the year. The 34-year-old Chepchirchir of Kenya is the second-fastest woman in the field. Following a solid season in 2017 when she registered her big PB of 2:19:47 from her victory at the Tokyo Marathon and successfully defended her title in Lisbon, Chepchirchir will be keen to continue her winning streak in her first race in 2018. Kenya’s Flomena Cheyech, 36, is the other title contender whose PB is faster than the 2:21:52 course record in Shanghai set by Tigist Tufa of Ethiopia three years ago. Cheyech clocked a PB of 2:21:22 to finish third in Paris last April and finished fourth over the classic distance at the IAAF World Championships in London. Her most recent performance was a 2:33:01 clocking at the Nagoya Women's Marathon in March. Helen Tola Bekele, who will celebrate her 24th birthday next week, is another woman to watch. The rising Ethiopian has improved her PB each season since making her marathon debut in 2015, recently reducing it to 2:22:48 in Berlin. (11/16/2018) ⚡AMP
Kenya’s 2008 Olympic steeplechase champion Brimin Kipruto
will embark on the road-running chapter of his career when he lines up for the Boulogne-Billancourt Christian Grangier Half-Marathon, an IAAF Bronze Label road race, on Sunday. The 33-year-old, who also won the 2007 world steeplechase title, was eliminated from his heat at the IAAF World Championships London 2017, which was his last competition to date. Having now shifted his focus to the roads, he will have much to do in Boulogne-Billancourt with the likes of Josphat Tanui and Olika Adugna also in the race. Tanui has a personal best of 59:22 set last year in Usti, suggesting that Franklin Chepkwony’s course record of 1:00:11 from 2013 could be in jeopardy. His season’s best, however, is 1:01:14 from the Prague Half Marathon in April, while his most recent performance at the distance was a 1:02:42 clocking in Usti Nad Labem in September. The field also includes Precious Mashele of South Africa, who set a PB of 1:01:48 last year in Boulogne-Billancourt, Yismaw Ayeno of Ethiopia, who was fifth in Marseille-Cassis, and Taye Girma, whose 10km PB of 28:06 indicates he could play a leading role in what will be his half marathon debut. In the women’s race, Kenya’s Parendis Lakapana will attempt to move up from her second-place showing last year. Two months ago Lakapana won in Krems in a time of 1:09:23, only 10 seconds outside her PB. Her main opponent should be compatriot Susan Jeptoo, who clocked a best of 1:09:02 in Lille last year. This year she has set PBs of 31:59 for 10km and 2:30:50 for the marathon, while she also prevailed in Porto in a season’s best of 1:11:06. (11/16/2018) ⚡AMP
Herron transitioned to trail running in 2016 and promptly set a course record by 27 minutes at the Ultra Race of Champions 100K in 9:36:05—and did it while drinking a Rogue Ales Dead Guy Ale during the last few miles of the race, which has since become part of her racing strategy.
In June 2017, Camille Herron competed in Comrades Marathon, a race in South Africa known for its 55-miles of torturous mountainous climbs. She crossed the line first by over four minutes, and became the third American ever to win the race.
Then in November, Herron not only won her first 100-mile race at the Tunnel Hill 100, but broke the World Record for the women’s 100-mile distance by over an hour.
During the race, she averaged a pace of 7:38 per mile. For Herron, running is not only a sport, but an extension of her identity; she is voracious in her pursuit of distance, but she has fun, too.
She looks forward to her post-run bacon and beer and, the night before big races, Herron brings a speaker to host dance parties. Sometimes she’s still dancing the next morning on the start line. This year, Herron was poised to return to the 2018 Comrades race in the best shape of her life.
However, in late May of 2018, just weeks before she was set to toe the line, she tried a new quad strengthening routine she found on YouTube. Always one to push herself to the limits, Herron found herself limping in the days that followed, due to a stress reaction of the femur and she withdrew from Comrades.
Weeks later, realizing she could not run at all, she withdrew from the 2018 Western States Endurance Run as well. Herron, 36, who now splits her time between Alamosa, Colorado, and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, took her first steps back running eight weeks ago and recently completed a 114.6-mile week of training. Camille is back and will be racing soon. (11/15/2018) ⚡AMP
Race officials announced Wednesday that entrants in the canceled 2018 Monterey Bay Half Marathon can instead run in one of the next three editions of the race or donate $75 of their entry fee to charity. Officials canceled the Monterey Bay Half Marathon, scheduled for Sunday, the evening before the event when shifting winds brought high levels of smoke from the Camp Fire in Butte County into the area causing unhealthy air quality on the Monterey Peninsula. Entrants have until the end of the year to decide if they want to compete in the coming editions of the Monterey Bay Half Marathon on Nov. 10, 2019, Nov. 15, 2020, or Nov. 14, 2021, donate $75 of their entry fee to a nonprofit agency supporting Northern California fire relief or donate $75 of their entry fee to Monterey County charities funded by the Big Sur Marathon Foundation, which manages the race. Doug Thurston, the Monterey Bay Half Marathon race director, said the overall entry fee varied between $90 and $125 depending on when entrants paid the fee. He explained the entry fees have already been spent. “The cost of the race exceeds the entry fees, with the balance being made up by sponsorships, donations, merchandise sales, etc.,” he said. “It’s not like we have all the entry fees sitting in an account somewhere, they’ve already been spent on the production of the event.” The donations will be made out of the Big Sur Marathon Foundation reserve funds. Thurston said thousands of entrants still came out to the finish-line area at Custom House Plaza to get their shirts, medals, programs, food and drinks in what ended up being a party-like atmosphere. (11/15/2018) ⚡AMP
is one of the top runners in the world. Most recently he won the Chicago Marathon clocking 2:05:11 in conditions that were not ideal as well. He shares this advice. “I’ve always been a big believer in what you put in is what you get out. For me, I am very patient. You build and build and it’s all about looking ahead," he says. Mo's family is very important to him as well. "Being a family man motivates me so much. In that moment falling over during the 2016 Rio games, I knew I had promised my eldest daughter Rihanna that medal and I was like ‘nah… Get up, get up, get up!." He did get up after being accidentally tripped up by his training partner Galen Rupp
in the 10000m. He got up and went on to win his third Olympic gold medal. Asked about breaking down walls he says, "I’ve been there [wanting to quit mid-marathon] I promise you, you hit a wall. But it’s all mental. You’ve got to visualize this – running the marathon is the easy part. It’s the work towards it that’s hard. Think of all the months, and the stuff you’ve been doing. You haven’t worked for nothing. You can’t just switch it off like that." He also feels you must believe in yourself. "Remember anything’s possible, you’ve just never taken yourself to that situation. You’ve got to push those boundaries. That’s what makes champions. The more crazy you are, the more of a champion you can be. Normal people go ‘nah’, but that’s what makes us different. Crazy people don’t want to give up.” (11/15/2018) ⚡AMP
Thick, heavy smoke and an air quality index forecasted to stay in the unhealthy range have forced organizers of the annual Davis Turkey Trot to reschedule this weekend’s event to Saturday, Dec. 8. The race will be the same day as Woodland’s annual Holiday Parade, scheduled for downtown Woodland. According to organizers, this is the first time in the history of the Davis Turkey Trot that it has ever been canceled or postponed. The race regularly attracts several thousand runners from throughout the region. Ironically, people were being urged to attend the Turkey Trott after the Yolo Food Bank canceled its Running of the Turkeys in Woodland on Thanksgiving Day because staff for that organization are busy coordinating the construction and eventual move into a new facility. A post on the Turkey Trot organizers website announcing the postponement stated that the “The Davis Turkey Trot, like all running/walking events, exists to promote and encourage exercise and fitness,” according to Dave Miramontes, executive director of A Change of Pace Foundation in Davis. “It would be contradictory and negligent to proceed with the event in conditions which are indisputably detrimental to the health and safety of our participants, as well as the volunteers, staff, sponsors and law enforcement that are required to host the race. Air quality is not expected to dramatically improve in the region by this weekend,” Miramontes reported. (11/15/2018) ⚡AMP
A recent New York Times article describing a recent study on how meditation could aid your fitness, The study, published in Maturitas, was conducted by researchers at Iowa State University. It found that people are active, on average, 11 minutes less in winter than in summer. And for some people, that may be a significant portion of their total daily activity time. They took 49 people who neither exercised nor meditated, and monitored their physical activity for one week starting in late summer, to get a baseline measurement of their activity levels. Half the group then began a structured exercise program that included at least 20 to 40 minutes a day of walking or jogging, plus a weekly group workout. The other half learned to meditate, following a structured program that included walking as well as sitting meditation, plus a weekly group instructional meditation session. The control group continued their regular daily activities without exercising or meditating. The experiment took place through September and October. Both groups’ activity levels were monitored for one week after the formal exercising and meditating ended, though neither group knew it (they thought they were being monitored for illness). Surprisingly, although people in the control group were active for 18 fewer minutes per day than in summer, both the meditators and the exercisers were active for only six fewer minutes than in summer, showing that meditation is as much of a stimulus for exercise as the habit of exercise itself. (11/15/2018) ⚡AMP
Former Standard Chartered Marathon winners will be eyeing to reclaim the title when the event gets underway on Sunday in Nairobi. The 2014 champion Reuben Kipruto Siwa and Joshua Kipkorir winner in 2016 and will be back with an aim of setting a record of emerging as the first athletes to win it more than once. The Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon champion, Elisha Barno (2:11:58), 2017 Amita Health Fit America Half Chicago bronze medalist Calvin Chemoiywo and Vincent Krop a 14th place finisher at the Singapore Stanchart marathon in 2009 (2:16.15) are in the field as well. (11/14/2018) ⚡AMP