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Great North Run 2021: Thousands take part as event returns

Thousands of people have taken to the streets of Tyneside for the 40th staging of the Great North Run.

Last year's event was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic and organisers changed the half-marathon's route this year to aid social distancing.

Participants started and finished in Newcastle rather than making their way to South Shields.

Staggered timeslots replaced the traditional mass start for the world's biggest half-marathon.

About 57,000 people were registered to take part - raising millions of pounds for charity, The Great North Run Company said.

The new route saw runners cross the Tyne Bridge twice and make their way through Newcastle city centre before finishing on the Great North Road.

BBC commentator and former winner Paul Radcliffe said the event's return had been "emotional".

"Looking down the road and seeing all the runners, a lot of hard work has gone into making this happen.

"It was so needed just to see this step back towards people getting together, having fun and connecting."

Four NHS workers were invited to start the race in recognition of the health service's efforts during the pandemic.

Speaking afterwards, occupational health worker Deborah Southworth said it had been "absolutely amazing" and a "privilege".

Jade Trewick, a nurse who also helped get the event under way, said it came after a "difficult but really rewarding" 18 months treating coronavirus patients.

Sir Brendan Foster, who helped launch the event in 1981, said it had been "a tough task" organising this year's run but it had turned into an "incredible" success.

"It's been really difficult. For the last 18 months, the whole nation and world have had awful times.

"The pandemic has separated people, but the Great North Run is all about being together.

"When the vaccine came around we started thinking maybe we can [stage it this year] so we made all kinds of contingency plans.

"Here we are. It's different. It's a one-off."

The elite women's race was won by Kenyan Helen Obiri in a time of 1:07:42, ahead of Great Britain's Eilish McColgan, who was six seconds behind.

Scotland's McColgan was aiming to repeat her mum Liz's three victories at the event in the 1990s. Great Britain's Charlotte Purdue finished in third.

Marc Scott, also of Great Britain, was victorious in the men's elite race, clocking a time of 1:01:22 to finish nine seconds ahead of Kenya's Ed Cheserek.

Galen Rupp of the United States was a further 20 seconds behind in third place.

Sean Frame won the men's wheelchair race in 49:52 with fellow Briton Shelly Woods first across the finishing line in the women's event in 57:01.

The elite wheelchair and women's races began at about 09:20 BST, with the elite men and first of the staggered starts at 09:45.

(09/12/2021) ⚡AMP
Great North Run

Great North Run

Great North Run founder Brendan Foster believes Britain is ready to welcome the world with open arms after the launch of the event's most ambitious plan to date. The Great World Run campaign seeks to recruit one runner from every country in the United Nations – 193 in total – to take part in the iconic half marathon in...


Vienna City Marathon winner disqualified for wearing shoes that are one centimetre too thick

Derara Hurisa is disqualified after winning the marathon by three seconds for wearing shoes not sanctioned by the event

Vienna is where Eliud Kipchoge ran his sub-two hour marathon

The winner of the Vienna City Marathon has been disqualified for wearing shoes that do not fit the race rules. Derara Hurisa ran the race in two hours, nine minutes and 22 seconds, but was stripped of his title when it was discovered the soles of his shoes is 5cm thick. It is one centimetre thicker than allowed in the race.

“Winner disqualified: The initial winner of the Vienna City Marathon had to be disqualified for wearing shoes which are not compliant with the rules. Ethiopia’s Derara Hurisa crossed the finish line first after 2.09:22,” the race Twitter account said.

“The sole of road running shoes has to be no thicker than four centimetres. Hurisa was running with a model that has a sole thickness of five centimetres.”

“Kenya’s Leonard Langat is now the winner of the Vienna City Marathon with a time of 2.09:25,” the account posted.

Hurisa, 24, made a name for himself last year by setting the Mumbai Marathon record, in 2.08:08.

Running shoes have been the centre of debate in the athletics world. Nike were the first to add a carbon plate into their sole, which in theory helped spring athletes forward. Fans and commentators alike wondered if getting an additional boost from shoes is within the ethos of running, where it is a test of fitness and not technology.

Since Nike’s invention, other brands have followed suit. Many records, including Eliud Kipchoge’s sub-two hour marathon, which was run in Vienna, have been set in carbon plated shoes.

The so called “technology doping” prompted the Olympics to set out guidelines for shoes allowed. In January 2020, the Olympics announced shoes with more than one carbon plate were banned, and so were soles thicker than 4cm.

live stream of event

(09/12/2021) ⚡AMP
Vienna City Marathon

Vienna City Marathon

More than 41,000 runners from over 110 nations take part in the Vienna City Marathon, cheered on by hundreds of thousands of spectators. From the start at UN City to the magnificent finish on the Heldenplatz, the excitement will never miss a beat. In recent years the Vienna City Marathon has succeeded in creating a unique position as a marathon...


Hamburg Marathon 2021 recap

After a two and a half year break, the Hamburg-Marahton could finally take place again on September 12, 2021.

Today at 9:00 am, the starting signal for the 35th edition of the Haspa Marathon Hamburg was given. Over 10,000 runners had registered for the event this year - many of them also over the half marathon distance and the relay marathon.

The distance

The fast route led past many sights and beautiful spots in the city of Hamburg. In addition to the marathon, there was also a relay marathon. The half marathon, which was held for the first time in 2018, was also part of the event.

In the footsteps of Eliud Kipchoge

In Hamburg, by the way, none other than Eliud Kipchoge holds the course record. In 2013 he ran 2:05:30 hours as a rather little-known runner. He is now a world record holder and the first marathon runner to cover the marathon distance in under two hours. Two years ago, the Ethiopians Tadu Abate (2:08:25 hours) and Dibabe Kuma (2:24:41 hours) won the race.

This year, only people vaccinated against Covid-19 were allowed to take part in the Hamburg Marathon. These measures caused horror among many interested parties in the run-up to the event.

The winners in 2021

A total of 5,157 runners competed this year, 2,417 of them over the marathon distance, 1,668 over the half marathon distance and 1,072 relay runners. There were only a few international top runners due to the requirements. A total of five runners and two runners with ambitions to win had come from Ethiopia and Uganda.

The fastest over the marathon distance was Martin Musau. The athlete from Uganda won his marathon debut with a time of 2:10:14 hours ahead of Masresha Bisetegn and Belay Bezabh (both Ethiopia). Benjamin Franke was the best German with 2:32:21 hours in 7th place. In the women’s category, the Ethiopian Cadise Demissie achieved a superior victory with 2:26:19 hours. She was more than 17 minutes ahead of the Swede Camilla Elofsson. 4th place went to the best German Angela Moesch (2:58:15 hours).

Carsten Hoenig (1:14:25 hours) and Stephanie Strate (1:16:47 hours) won the half marathon.

(09/12/2021) ⚡AMP
Haspa Marathon Hamburg

Haspa Marathon Hamburg

The HASPA MARATHON HAMBURG is Germany’s biggest spring marathon and since 1986 the first one to paint the blue line on the roads. Hamburcourse record is fast (2:05:30), the metropolitan city (1.8 million residents) lets the euphoric atmosphere spill over and carry you to the finish. Make this experience first hand and follow the Blue Line....


Kenyan Faith Kipyegon wins 1500m showdown for Diamond League success in Zurich

From the moment that Olympic 5000m and 10,000m champion Sifan Hassan declared that she would race fellow Tokyo gold medallist Faith Kipyegon in the 1500m at the Wanda Diamond League final in Zurich, the race had the makings of an all-time classic.

And so it was.

Their first meeting this year was in Florence in June, where world champion Hassan had Kipyegon’s measure. But Kipyegon took back the initiative in Monaco in July and claimed a dominant victory at the Tokyo Olympics in August, as Hassan fought through the fatigue of her extraordinarily ambitious race schedule to secure the bronze medal.

But with two such exceptional talents – Hassan led their head-to-head record 9-8 before tonight’s race – each battle must be fought anew.

From the first lap, each only had eyes on the other. The pacemaker was forgotten as they both waited and watched for the inevitable showdown.

Kipyegon moved into the lead just after the bell, with Hassan shadowing her every step. The Kenyan surged down the back straight and then stepped up the pace around the final bend, but Hassan would not concede.

The Dutchwoman moved out of the Kenyan’s slipstream as they entered the straight and drew level. For a moment with 50m to go it appeared that Kipyegon might buckle under the pressure but her strength held and it was Hassan who faded slightly in the final metres.

Kipyegon stopped the clock in 3:58.33, just a metre ahead of Hassan in 3:58.55. The USA's Josette Norris came through for third in 4:00.41.

“I knew it would be a tactical race today," Kipyegon said. “I was confident that in the last lap I could do better and it worked.”

Hassan declared Kipyegon was “really one of the greatest athletes” but vowed to keep challenging her.

“Today was my last race (of the season) and I wanted to give everything, and I did that and I am happy about it," Hassan said before warning: “Next year, I will train my speed and I will be amazing.”

Close finishes were the order of the evening as the men’s 1500m followed an eerily similar script.

This time the protagonists were the world champion Timothy Cheruiyot and the Olympic champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen.

Until the Tokyo Olympic Games, the young Norwegian had lost 12 straight races to Cheruiyot but he finally turned the tables on the biggest stage of them all. However, Cheruiyot gained a measure of revenge in Zurich.

Cheruiyot employed the same tactics as his compatriot Kipyegon, forcing Ingebrigtsen to chase him from the bell. He tightened the screws gradually until he entered the home straight and lit out for home.

Like Hassan, Ingebrigtsen had the strength to challenge in the straight but not to draw ahead. Cheruiyot hung tough and took the glory (and his fourth Diamond League trophy) by 0.08 – 3:31.37 to 3:31.45. Australia’s Stewart McSweyn (3:32.14) completed the podium, one place ahead of his compatriot Ollie Hoare (3:32.66).

(09/11/2021) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics

Athletics Canada mandates full vaccination at all events

Athletics Canada announced today that all athletes, coaches, and fans over the age of 12 who are planning to attend Athletics Canada events must be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. This new mandate will also apply to volunteers, media and event staff on-site for Athletics Canada events.

The new vaccination policy will take effect immediately, and will apply to events and in-person meets.

This mandate will apply to anyone who was registered for the 2021 Canadian 10K Championships as part of the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon on Oct. 17, as well as the 2021 Canadian Cross Country Championships in Ottawa on Nov. 27.

“Since we began organizing events in 1986, we promised our community an accurate and safe course,” said Alan Brookes, Race Director, Canada Running Series, in the Athletics Canada press release. “This has been a core value for more than four decades. As we look forward to a return to in-person racing this fall, the health and safety of our participants, staff, and volunteers remain of utmost importance.” This mandate will apply to anyone who was registered for the 2021 Canadian 10K Championships as part of the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon on Oct. 17, as well as the 2021 Canadian Cross Country Championships in Ottawa on Nov. 27.

“Since we began organizing events in 1986, we promised our community an accurate and safe course,” said Alan Brookes, Race Director, Canada Running Series, in the Athletics Canada press release. “This has been a core value for more than four decades. As we look forward to a return to in-person racing this fall, the health and safety of our participants, staff, and volunteers remain of utmost importance.” 

“We share Athletics Canada’s commitment to require full vaccination for participants, staff and volunteers as the best way forward to restart in-person road racing. We’re excited to get back to what we love and see thousands of people cross that finish line on Oct. 17,” says Brookes. 

This Athletics Canada mandate does not apply at provincial athletics sanctioned events yet. Each provincial athletics institution has the right to make its own jurisdiction regarding in-person events and activities. 

Further details will be shared on the implementation of the policy, per Athletics Canada.

(09/11/2021) ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson

The Truth About Alcohol And Endurance Sports

Just like Sunday brunch with friends and happy hour with coworkers, the post-run drink has become a uniting ritual for runners. An Instagram search for hashtags #willrunforbeer and #runforwine reveals thousands of photos of smiling, sweaty runners-many of them women-downing frosty pints of beer or clutching super-sized glasses of wine. Promotion for everything from casual neighborhood brewery runs and Rose 5Ks to large-scale destination races like the Napa-to-Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon only amplify the message: alcohol is a justifiable reward for hard-run miles, and alcohol and exercise go hand-in-hand for many.

Many of the races, like the Zooma series and Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend, explicitly bill themselves as girls' weekend getaways, complete with luxury accommodations, elaborate swag bags, and post-event parties with free flowing wine, beer, and other libations. In addition, much of the running merchandise targeted to women is branded with catchy, alcohol-related slogans like "Run All the Miles, Drink all the Wine" and "Will Run for Beer." Not to mention all the other ways alcohol and exercise are becoming entwined: think beer yoga and wine hikes; FitVine's collab with Barry's Bootcamp; Sunday sip and spins with mimosa bars post-spin class.

But just as women are closing the gender gap in road race participation, comprising just over 60% of all race finishers in 2019, recent studies also show that women are closing the gender gap when it comes to alcohol consumption-and not in a good way. According to a 2019 study, women in their late teens and early 20s now report drinking and getting drunk at higher rates than their male peers, and pandemic-related anxiety, depression and stress have only exacerbated unhealthy drinking patterns for many.

And while for most people, a celebratory drink with friends after a group run or at the finish line is no more harmful than a sugar doughnut or indulgent brunch, how did alcohol-a mood-altering drug-become such an integral part of a sport that promotes health and wellness?

Racing as an experience

Just as running's second wave in the late 1990s and early 2000s dramatically increased women's participation in the sport, it also increased demand for destination and experiential races. From the launch of the pioneering Rock 'n' Roll series in the late 1990s to the women-centric Zooma and Disney Princess events that followed in the early 2000s, races became bigger and bolder, with on-course live music, branded merchandise, elaborate medals, and themed post-race parties serving everything from hot chocolate and cheese to bacon, pancakes, and of course, alcohol.

These unique race experiences appeal to seasoned runners like Cara Turano of Portland.

"I used to be really happy with a cool medal or t-shirt, but you can only have so many medals and shirts," she explains. "Perks like finishing in a beer garden or bringing home wine glasses is a much more memorable experience."

Turano ran the Bordeaux Marathon a few years ago to celebrate her 35th birthday and honor her mom's passing.

"The race included 24 wine stops over 26.2 miles, and it was the most amazing, festive, and supportive experience with 10,000 runners from around the world, all in costume, running pretty slowly through rolling vineyards in the gorgeous South of France," she recalls, adding that destination races are "a great way to combine a passion for running with one for travel."

Similarly, Nina Santus, a board member of Athens Road Runners in Georgia, frequently travels to races, choosing an experience based on personal interests or connections to a specific cause.

"I ran the Marine Corps Marathon because my brother was in the Marine Corps," she explains. "I'm also a big wine person, so if I can find a race where I can run and see the vineyards and enjoy food and drink afterward, I will do it." Santus plans to run the Marathon du Medoc next fall and has run alcohol-centric races like the Dirty Spokes Chateau Elan Muscadine Run and the Ales for Trails Terrapin Beer 5K, closer to home.

"I don't participate in beer miles where you have to chug things or get sick or be drunk, but I do support the idea of food and beverage to help bring more folks out for camaraderie and the sport of running," she continues.

For race director Tes Sobomehin Marshall, founder of Run Social Atlanta, that camaraderie is baked into her company's mission. With runs and races that launch or end near local businesses ranging from breweries and restaurants to physical therapy studios, athletic-wear stores, and entertainment-focused venues like Top Golf, the company markets itself to "both the competitive runner and the 'I just want a shirt and a beer' person," explains Marshall.

When she first started organizing races in 2012, Marshall realized "people were coming and spending 30 minutes running the race, and then another two to three hours socializing after." She finds her laid-back, social, and neighborhood-centric approach to racing "more accessible to people who wouldn't otherwise run and more fun for people who've been running for a while."

Atlantan Audrey Ward, who started running earlier this year, appreciates low-key, social races.

"As a newer runner, just getting my shoes on and out the door can be intimidating," she says. "Having a good time with people who just like to run (and maybe to cheers with afterward) takes the pressure off what can be a super-competitive sport."

According to Santus, the 300-400 member Athens Road Runners keeps its events approachable to make runners like Ward feel included.

In addition to Saturday morning training runs and Wednesday morning track workouts, the group regularly runs to local breweries or restaurants with events branded as "Taco Tuesday" and also gathers informally for popsicles, beer, or fizzy waters.

The social activities are designed to make "everyone feel welcome, no matter their pace," and to "break down the illusion that all runners are snobby and fast," she explains.

Terri Huggins, a New Jersey-based writer and fitness instructor, understands that alcohol can be a powerful incentive to attract newcomers who may be intimidated by an unfamiliar sport or activity.

Whether a gym class or a road race, "including alcohol really helps with engagement, and one could argue that someone drinking after an event is far better than someone not working out at all," she says.

But as road races ramp up again at the same time women report drinking more alcohol to cope with pandemic-related stressors like balancing work with child-rearing, caring for sick relatives, and a massive exodus from the workforce, should organizers moderate drink-related messaging?

Tracy Green, a sub three-hour marathoner from Louisville who took an extended break from drinking alcohol last year, says yes.

"We know thinking of exercise as punishment or as a response to negative body image can be mentally unhealthy, and we know that alcohol can make issues like depression and anxiety worse-so coupling those two things together at a race is probably not the best thing we could be doing for mental health," she explains.

And while Huggins imbibes on occasion, she says that "in a time when so many people are unaware of what it means to drink in moderation, people in the fitness industry have an obligation to educate their participants on how alcohol can affect recovery, sleep, and metabolism."

The experts agree.

According to Dr. George F. Koob, director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, for "people who are exhausted from running, mildly dehydrated, and have empty stomachs, one serving of alcohol could be much riskier than it seems"-especially if driving home after an event.

Even if booze is an integral part of your racing group or event, Koob suggests being mindful that many people "turn to exercise as part of recovery from an alcohol use disorder," and that "these folks might be uncomfortable or left out if other runners celebrate the finish of a race with alcohol."

Keeping alcohol in a separate area of an expo or finish line celebration is one way to offer libations without explicitly excluding those who don't drink, says Back on My Feet CEO Katy Sherratt. And since alcohol is hyper-present at road races, it can provide a "real-world scenario" for those with addictions to maintain sobriety, as long as they have a strong support network.

And even those who do drink alcohol on occasion may opt to skip the post-race beer in favor of healthier beverages, like recovery shakes and smoothies, kombucha, and sparkling water.

"Give me a fancy, fizzy mineral water after a hot race instead of a beer any day," says Green.

Professional runner and Olympian Molly Seidel enjoys non-alcoholic beers from Connecticut-based Athletic Brewing Company after a hard training session.

"I love that it's hoppy and actually tastes like an IPA, plus I get some good carbs out of it without alcohol impacting my training," she says.

The rapid growth in the non-alcoholic beer and spirits market, combined with growing interest in booze-free social movements like Dry January and Sober Curious, could be a unique opportunity for the racing industry to temper its alcohol-centric messaging.

And yes, a beer at the finish line is great, but as Dr. Koob puts it, "shouldn't completing the race be reward enough?"

(09/11/2021) ⚡AMP
by Trail Runner Magazine

7 rules for running longer

So you’ve been running for a while now and you’ve managed to stick to a fairly consistent routine. Maybe you’re going out for 30 minutes a few times per week, or perhaps you’ve worked your way up so that you’re able to comfortably run 5K without stopping. That’s great! If you’re considering challenging yourself with some longer runs, keep these guidelines in mind as you’re increasing your distance.

Slow down

As you’ve been running more consistently, you’ve likely been able to increase your pace. When you start trying to go longer, however, you may want to back off the speed, at least initially. The first goal when increasing your distance should be to make it through the whole thing, and getting faster can come later.

Add length gradually

If you’ve been running 5K consistently, you don’t have to go out and try to run 10K right off the bat. Most experts suggest increasing your distance by no more than 10 per cent per week, which from 5K is only about 50m. You may want to increase more than that, which is fine, but be careful not to do too much too soon, which could increase your risk for injuries.

Do it once per week

When increasing your distance, keep in mind you don’t have to run longer every time you go out. If, for example, you’re running 5K three times per week, you can continue doing that twice per week, and choose one of your runs to try going a little longer. That will also help you avoid the too-much-too-soon issue many newer runners tend to fall victim to.

Take walk breaks

Even if you normally don’t take walk breaks during your shorter runs, there’s no shame in using walk breaks as you’re increasing your distance. Sometimes, a quick break is all you need to regroup mentally and tackle those extra few kilometres.

Fuel properly

As you start to increase the length of your runs, fuelling properly before and after becomes increasingly important. Your stomach grumbling part-way through your run is never fun, and eating something healthy afterward will help you refuel so that you’re ready to go for your next run.

Take recovery seriously

As you increase the amount you’re running, all the little things that help you run better and prevent injury become more and more important. That includes getting enough sleep, eating well, drinking enough water, stretching and giving your body what it needs to recover so you can continue to run well.

(09/11/2021) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine

Time for Shelby Houlihan to come clean

Two things ought to happen now that the Court of Arbitration for Sport has issued a technically detailed but, in the end, common-sense ruling in the matter of Shelby Houlihan, the American distance runner, banning her for four years for nandrolone — through January 2025 — while thoroughly rejecting the ridiculous burrito defense.

One, Houlihan ought to come clean.

What most likely happened?

We don’t and won’t know until Houlihan admits whatever it was. But, see paragraph 128 of this very thorough 44-page ruling, citing the head of the Montreal anti-doping lab, Christiane Ayotte, who notes that oral precursors of nandrolone can readily be bought on the internet, even on Amazon, and that a chemical signature very much like the one Houlihan tested for was obtained five years ago when that very lab tested a product it had bought called “Nor-Andro Max.”

Two, all the journalistic sheep who wanted to believe, who maybe still want to believe despite the overwhelming evidence against Houlihan, that there was no way, just no way, a white American distance runner affiliated with the Bowerman Track Club could test positive — all these people, and the readers they misled, ought to take a crash course in Doping 101 and the things people will say and do, meaning anything and everything, to avoid getting busted.

This entire saga, truthfully, has been pathetic.

This burrito defense has, from the get-go, stretched the bounds of credulity, and anyone who bought it — even for a second — needs to undergo a real-world moron test.

Do you also believe pigs can fly? (‘Pigs’ used advisedly here.) Do you think Abraham Lincoln is a vampire slayer? Are you super-confident you can beat up a grizzly bear?

Almost every single facet of Houlihan’s defense was — is — absurd.

To be clear: not blaming Houlihan’s lawyers for aggressively scheming up any and every avenue possible. That’s what they’re there for.

But the three-judge panel went to great length — again, 44 pages — to refute, carefully, virtually everything about it.

For instance:

Houlihan took a lie detector test.

She was asked, did you at any time knowingly ingest nandrolone? And answered no. She was also asked, did you intentionally ingest the drug nandrolone? And said, no.

But as the panel pointed out, here’s what she wasn’t asked: did you take doping substances at the material time?

Houlihan also submitted to hair analysis. All involved agreed that it proved that nandrolone injections could be excluded. But, the panel found, that analysis failed to take into account oral (so we’re all on the same page here, something you eat or drink) precursors of nandrolone, such as “19-nor-DHEA” and “nor-Andro.”

Which is why it boggles the mind, truly, that an outlet such as Women’s Running would, in the second paragraph of its account of this ruling, prattle on this way:

“CAS decided that although Houlihan was a credible witness and brought ‘compelling character witness evidence in support of her defense,’ she failed to establish the source of the nandrolone that was detected in her urine.”

This is the second paragraph?!

Who cares if Shelby Houlihan is or is not a nice person and can or cannot get through a lie detector when asked certain questions? That’s all but irrelevant when it comes to the science in this case. As for her “compelling character witness evidence?” Ha! That’s a complete misread of what is what. Offering statements or testifying on her behalf were, among others, her former boyfriend, Matthew Centrowitz, gold medalist in the men’s 1500 at the Rio 2016 Olympics, Courtney Frerichs, the surprise silver medalist in the women’s steeplechase a few weeks ago in Tokyo, and Karissa Schweizer, who competed in Tokyo in both the women’s 5k (11th) and 10k (12th), and if you don’t think the Athletics Integrity Unit took careful observation of who was in Houlihan’s inner circle, maybe you seriously do believe pigs can fly.

The first paragraph of the Women’s Running story, what in journalism circles is called the lede, also noted — accurately — the CAS observation that Houlihan’s explanation was “possible but unlikely.”

As if that were justification.

Everything in life is possible.

But here’s what CAS also said, and be mindful that the burden of proof in this matter was on Houlihan, and so if this were a math contest, she had to get to 50.1, but instead her defense “presupposes a cascade of factual and scientific improbabilities, which means that its composite probability is (very) close to zero.”

Herewith the cascade:

— Houlihan ordered a carne asada — that is, a steak — burrito at a food truck in Beaverton, Oregon, near Portland. For her defense to work, she would have had to have been served and eaten pork.

The entire defense rests on this premise. A wrong order. Which she then ate. But that’s not all.

— Because the pork would have not been ‘normal’ pork but, per the Houlihan defense, uncastrated boar.

— Except uncastrated boar gets into the U.S. food chain through completely different channels than pork. So for uncastrated boar to end up in the normal pork food chain, the boar must have been a specimen with undescended testicles. This is called ‘cryptorchid.’

At this point, this is already verging on bizarre if not crazy stupid. Undescended testicled boar. OK.

— Except there’s more. The cryptorchid is (or was) of a “small minority of uncastrated boars that — in addition — must have had elevated androgen levels.” That would be “abnormal” for 6-month-old pigs.

— More still. The pork product Houlihan allegedly ate, despite ordering steak, is pork stomach. Follow along here because this gets into butcher-level stuff. When people eat pork stomach, that stomach is stripped of the inner layer; only the outer muscle remains. Houlihan’s assertion was that uncastrated boars have elevated androgen levels. Except those are not found in the muscle. Those levels are found only in specific parts — the kidneys, testes or liver. Pork stomach, the panel said, has one of the lowest androgen levels.

— More science. The nandrolone metabolite levels in Houlihan’s urine were two to three times higher than the highest values in the literature after eating much more significant quantities of mature (uncastrated) boar — a product different from the alleged cryptorchid in question, which would have been slaughtered at six months.

— Agriculturally speaking, the carbon isotope signature of the metabolite in her urine was “fundamentally inconsistent” with the largely corn-based diet of commercial pigs in the United States.

— Finally, an expert witness said the chance of a cryptorchid ending up in the normal supply chain in the United States is “far less” than one in 10,000.

Beyond which, see paragraph 104 on page 30, and come on now, there’s this:

“The fact that IBP/Tyson (the plant where the food truck in Beaverton bought the pork meat from) does not operate a boar kill plant. Thus, it is ‘near zero chance’ that any boar meat would get mixed with conventional fresh pork products.”

All this leaves the obvious question, doesn’t it:

if the slaughterhouse doesn’t operate a boar kill plant, and thus there’s essentially no chance of boar meat getting in the food chain with pork other than, hmm, aliens dropping in from Galaxy Starchaser Nebula X9 to surreptitiously teleport it in there and so the food truck had a “near zero” chance of having boar meat on the night in question and, besides, Houlihan ordered a steak burrito, anyway — what really happened here?

Time for Shelby Houlihan to come clean.

She likely will dodge this opportunity until after the Swiss Federal Tribunal issues the final no-go — understand that the SFT takes up procedural matters, not substantive, so her chance of success there is, again, “near zero” — but she would do the right thing, now, by coming clean.

Time, too, for her supporters, defenders and enablers to see the light. It’s tough when your purported heroes get tagged for doping. But before all of you go out and buy Floyd Landis’ book about how he didn’t cheat to win the Tour de France — oops.

Some of us have been down this road before. This burrito defense — this was creative, indeed. But that didn’t make it any smarter, or better.

Pigs don’t fly. That’s the truth.

(09/11/2021) ⚡AMP

Göte­borgsvarvet and the race week in Sep­tem­ber 2021 is canceled

Göte­borgsvarvet 2021, which was to be arranged on Sep­tem­ber 11, is can­celed. Both the clas­sic 21km race and the oth­er races dur­ing the race week are can­celed, this due to covid-19 and the increased spread of the dis­ease in the region.

This is extremely sad for the organization as well as for all participants, but with great respect for the pandemic, which unfortunately still is increasing, we had to make this decision, says Jahja Zeqiraj, chairman of the Gothenburg Athletics Association.

After the cancelation of Göteborgsvarvet last year, hard work has been going on for over a year in order to arrange Göteborgsvarvet 2021 in a safe way. More than 35,000 participants were registered for this year's edition.

The last couple of weeks with the increased spread of Covid-19 in the region made it impossible to arrange a safe competition with start and finish around the area of Slottsskogsvallen. The decision applies to all races planed in September.

The decision was made at an extra board meeting last night after dialogue with the disease prevention and control authorities and representatives from the health care in the region.

We have for a long period of time planned and hoped to arrange Göteborgsvarvet and our other races in a safe form this fall, and the earlier dialogue we have had with authorities and healthcare has been positive. Which made this a hard but necessary decision, we still have a strong determination and will to fight for both Göteborgsvarvet and the Athletics Association with its’ 50 track and field clubs in Gothenburg to live on. In this, we need support from Gothenburg to get through these challenging times together. We are now looking forward to 2022. A long-awaited restart of society is on everyone's agenda, including ours.

Claes Mangelus, medically responsible doctor for Göteborgsvarvet

- We have had a good dialogue with authorities, the Police and the healthcare system all the way. The forecasts for the races to be arranged have been good, but with today's reality and the recent negative development make it untenable to arrange an event of this size. The pandemic is ongoing, the spread of infection is increasing again and the burden on the public healthcare remains high, so we all agreed that the decision to cancel this year's edition is the right one.

All registered participants for Göteborgsvarvet and Göteborgsvarvet Marathon will still be able to participate digitally. Digital participation gives a medal and an official result which is approved as qualifying time for Göteborgsvarvet 2022.

- Once again, we must switch from a physical to a virtual race. We know that there will be many questions from our runners and we ask you to please bear with us as we work through the details. Our goal and ambition is still to create a memorable running event even if we cannot be in the same place, says Jahja Zeqirai.

(09/11/2021) ⚡AMP
Gothenburg Half Marathon

Gothenburg Half Marathon

Run through the heart of one of Scandinavia's most beautiful cities. The course will be lined with over 200,000 enthusiastic and sports interested spectators. Gothenburgs central location in Scandinavia makes it easy to reach by plane, boat, train or car. Göteborgsvarvet is an annual half marathon running competition in Gothenburg, Sweden. It is the largest annual running competition in Sweden,...


One of the largest mountain marathons in the world celebrated its comeback

After the cancellation last year, several thousand runners were again at the start of the Jungfrau Marathon in Switzerland.

The route was adapted for this year by the organizer: Of course, nothing has changed in the fantastic panorama. The course led from Interlaken Airport to the Eiger Glacier. The runners passed Böningen, Iseltwald, Wilderwil, Zweilütschingen and Lauterbrunnen, among others. The eponymous four-thousander "Jungfrau" was, just like the mighty Eiger north face, in the immediate vicinity and in the field of vision of the athletes.

Fight for the 3-hour mark and victory

For the 42.195 kilometer marathon route with around 2,000 meters of altitude, top times of around three hours were to be expected. The winner of the last edition two years ago was the Briton Robbie Simpson, who at the time cracked the 3-hour mark in wintry conditions with 2:59:30 hours. For women, Simone Troxler is the defending champion from 2019.

Colombians triumph

The Colombian Jose David Cardona was in a class of his own that day. He was able to break away from the last pursuers after less than half of the race and clinched an undisputed victory with 3:05:01 hours. More than five minutes behind followed Stephan Wenk after a great race to catch up.

Laura Hottenrott lived up to her role as a favorite for women. The German professional runner was over 13 minutes ahead of Georgina Schwiening after 3:27:30 hours.

(09/11/2021) ⚡AMP
Jungfrau Marathon

Jungfrau Marathon

The Jungfrau-Marathon presents the most beautiful marathon course in the world - marvelous mountains scenery and the excellent change of the landscape between the start in Interlaken and the finish on Kleine Scheidegg. The difference in altitude of 1829 meter (6000 feet) is a challenge for everybody. There is no Marathon in Europe with such great dimensions. Eiger, Mönch and...


Retired nurse Dorothy Strand 81, reigns as only athlete to run all 25 Surf City Marathons

Dorothy Strand has never been the fastest of runners. But what she lacks in speed she makes up for in consistency.

On Saturday, Sept. 11, Strand will tackle the 25th annual Surf City Marathon/Half Marathon. It’s her 25th as well.

“She’s the only athlete on planet Earth who has participated all 25 years,” said Surf City Marathon spokesman Dan Cruz.

At 81, and battling back pain, Strand will walk this year rather than trot. And instead of completing the full marathon she will settle for half.

Strand, a retired nurse who lives in Orange, said she’s getting inspiration from the friends in her running group. “I might have opted out this year if not for them. There was no way they were letting me miss my 25th year. I felt that pressure of, ‘I’m a “legacy.” I’ve got to do it.’”

Originally known as the Pacific Shoreline Marathon, the city’s first race was held in 1997. Traditionally, it takes place the morning of Super Bowl Sunday. But coronavirus concerns pushed this year’s event forward seven months. Organizers hope to return to the usual routine in February of 2022.

Cruz said Strand will be celebrated at both the start and finish lines. “She is our celebrity runner this year.”

In normal times, the race attracts more than 17,000 participants, including some of the world’s best distance runners. But this year the lingering pandemic has cut that number to about 13,000 runners, who will participate in several different events: marathon, half-marathon, 10K and 5K. Almost all will be from Southern California, Cruz said.

John Strand, 87, came mighty close to sharing in his wife’s glory. However, about 15 years ago he missed a Surf City Marathon when he was off running in another state.

The Strands developed their passion for long-distance running in the 1980s when their two sons ran cross country and track at Orange Lutheran High. “It became a family thing,” Dorothy Strand said.

“My husband was a natural, but I’m not,” she added. “Some of my friends would run with me in the back. Gradually, I got better.”

She’s run in 46 marathons, with her fastest time (so far) 4:57 in 1999, in Dublin, Ireland. “It’s not great, but it’s great for me,” Strand said.

By then, the couple had started traveling to run in marathons. Now retired, physician John Strand visited all 50 states and seven continents chasing his hobby. He’s run in 118 marathons, total, with a personal best of 4:04.

When she started running, Dorothy Strand recalled, “I didn’t have much competition in my age group. Women weren’t really out there competing as much.”

John Strand also has health problems now, so his plan for Saturday is to stroll in the 5K.

“That’s life,” he said. “I can’t do everything I used to do, but I very much enjoyed that chapter of my life.”

Before he started running, Strand said, he was a “couch potato.”

“Running made me more outgoing, more of an extrovert,” he said. “Healthy body, healthy mind. Because of running, I’ve seen so many beautiful trails and met so many great people.”

Icing on the cake: His wife has shared his passion.

“It’s been wonderful to have a partner with me, to have something we can do together,” Strand said.

For her part, Dorothy Strand said running made her more adventurous.

(09/10/2021) ⚡AMP
by Susan Christian Goulding
Surf City USA

Surf City USA

The Surf City USA Marathon and Half-Marathon attracts more than 20,000 runners from around the world. The exclusive oceanfront course runs along the Pacific Coast Highway (which is more like a street than a highway in this area), past the Huntington Beach Pier and the famous Southern California surfing beaches. Weekend highlights include many Super Bowl parties, the three-day Active...


Why every marathon runner must avoid dehydration and over-hydration

A marathon runner’s sports performance is highly efficient when the runner is adequately hydrated. An excess or deficit of fluids can lead to fatal consequences.

Running creates excess heat. This leads to sweating- a coping mechanism of the body to cool down. The blood fluid becomes thicker as a result of the decline in fluid content in the body. Greater force is required to pump blood through the veins. This overloads the heart eventually leading to a heart attack.

“When training for a marathon, runners must drink water at regular intervals. This is to avoid dehydration especially with such variables like warm weather, running intensity, rate of sweating. Dehydration is common, leads to muscle cramps due to fluid and electrolyte loss and so must be avoided,” says Dr. Santosh Dora, Senior Cardiologist, Asian Heart Institute.“Similar to the effects of dehydration is over-hydration.

When runner’s gain weight while training, it is a sure sign of over drinking. Slow runners are more likely to over hydrate. This is a serious condition and in medical terms is called hyponatremia,” says Dr Vijay D'Silva, Director- Critical Care and Medical Affairs, Asian Heart Institute and Medical Director, Tata Mumbai Marathon.

Tips to hydrate yourself:

Consume at least 500 ml of fluid two hours before exercise so as to give your body enough time to get rid of excess ingested water.

Make sure you drink water every time an aid station comes. It is ideal if one drinks water from early on and at regular intervals so as to counter the loss through sweating.

Fast runners must drink more fluids to avoid dehydration.

Tips to avoid over-hydration:

Slow runners bear the risk of over hydration. In such a case, drink fluids after longer periods. The trick is to ‘drink to thirst’ rather than ‘drink to max’.Drink only that much fluid that you lose over sweating.

Try to choose such drinks which have sugar or electrolytes so that you can easily lose it through sweating.

Some symptoms of dehydration are feeling light-headed, rapid heart rate, sunken eyes, dry mouth, thirsty, and headache.

Symptoms of over-hydration include headache, puffy or bloated hands and feet, nausea, dizziness, disorientation, and feeling sleepy.

(09/10/2021) ⚡AMP

2021 Loch Ness Marathon makes final call for entries

Those wishing to take part in the Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running have until September 19 to sign up.

The event, which takes place on Sunday October 3 2021, includes the Marathon, Baxters River Ness 10K, 10K Corporate Challenge and Baxters River Ness 5K.

Making its return for the first time since 2019, the event will have enhanced safety measures and Covid guidelines in place. Typically attracting runners from around the globe, this year will see participants primarily from across the UK descend upon the Highland capital for one of the world’s most scenic marathons.

The Event Village will also be back for the event weekend, with highlights including a Sports Expo and a Festival on race day with street food and a pipe band.

Malcolm Sutherland, Event & Race Director of Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running, said: “We’re so excited for the return of the Baxters Loch Ness Marathon & Festival of Running and to welcome everyone back to beautiful Loch Ness. It’s always great to see so many different people and abilities come together to enjoy the races and this year will be even more special.

“Of course, there will be Covid safety measures in place and all participants will receive guidelines outlining these measures.

“We’re now taking the last entries for the event so if you’ve been thinking about taking part in our 5K or 10K, then get involved! There are also some charity spaces still available in the marathon, which are a great way to raise money for fantastic charities, including our official charity, Macmillan Cancer Support.

“We wish all runners the best of luck with their final weeks of training and fundraising, and look forward to seeing them on the start line on October 3.”

Discounted entry for the Baxters River Ness 5K is also available for schools and youth groups and clubs and is open to all ages and running abilities.

Entries close on September 19, 2021 unless race capacity is reached sooner, with limited 5K entries available on the event weekend.

(09/10/2021) ⚡AMP
Baxters Loch Ness Marathon

Baxters Loch Ness Marathon

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


Cheruiyot Defeats Ingebrigtsen In Diamond League 1500m Final

At tonight's talent-packed Wanda Diamond League Final at the Letzigrund in Zürich, Kenya's Timothy Cheruiyot evened the score with Norway's Jakob Ingebrigtsen by defeating the reigning Olympic 1500m champion by just 8/100ths of a second, reversing their finish places from Tokyo. With his victory tonight, Cheruiyot retained the Diamond League title he had earned in Brussels in 2019 and sent a signal that he'll be tough to beat at next summer's World Athletics Championships in Eugene where he will come in as reigning champion.

"That was good but a very tight race," Cheruiyot said. "I knew the standard was strong here, and I am happy."

In last month's Olympic final, Ingebrigtsen cleverly shadowed Cheruiyot throughout the race before overwhelming the Kenyan in the final sprint. Tonight, Cheruiyot took the lead from Australia's Stewart McSweyn at the bell, and held his lead through the final bend where Ingebrigtsen was still close behind. In the last 100 meters, Cheruiyot kept his signature forward-leaning form as he accelerated to the finish line in 3:31.37. Ingebrigtsen tied up in the final meters and had to settle for second in 3:31.45. McSweyn held on for third in 3:32.14 just ahead of his compatriot Oliver Hoare who ran a personal best 3:32.66.

"It is what it is," lamented Ingebrigtsen. "I am really happy with what I did in Tokyo. It is tough to go into races afterwards. So I am just happy to be done with this season and looking forward to the World Championships next year."

Cheruiyot, who nearly missed out on Olympic team selection after he only finished fourth at the Kenyan Olympic Trials, is also looking forward to 2022.

"I was having many challenges in Tokyo, so now I am getting better," he said referring to a pesky hamstring injury. "My hamstring is getting better and I am prepared for next season. My goal is that I know I need to defend my world title at next year's championships. That is my target now, but I need to work out (hard) because I know Jakob Ingebrigtsen is going to continue to get better."

In another epic rematch from Tokyo, Kenyan Faith Kipyegon out-sprinted Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan to win the women's 1500m in 3:58.33. Like in the men's race, Kipyegon was able to hold her form and run smoothly through the tape, while an exhausted-looking Hassan thrashed her way to second in 3:58.55. Hassan had defeated Kipyegon in the 2019 World Athletics Championships, but Kipyegon beat Hassan to third place in last month's Olympics. Their rivalry is sure to continue into next year.

"I was confident that in the last lap I could do better and it worked," Kipyegon said. "This is my second Diamond League trophy and my first as a mother. My family is watching tonight from home. I started my season well and I finished it well, I won almost all my competitions, especially the Olympic final. I am so grateful."

Kenyan men also won the 800m and 3000m steeplechase. In the two-lap event, reigning Olympic gold and silver medalists, Emmanuel Korir and Ferguson Rotich, finished in the same order again tonight. Rotich tried to win with a long drive from 250 meters out, but Korir --who was sprinting furiously-- passed him in the homestretch to win 1:44.56 to 1:44.96. American Clayton Murphy got third (1:45.21).

"I think it was tough today," said Korir. "But I managed to follow my strategy, tried to push it in the end and now I have this Trophy and I am very glad."

Benjamin Kigen upset Olympic champion Soufiane El Bakkali of Morocco in the steeplechase by running away from the field on the backstretch of the final lap, hurdling the final water jump, then holding on in the homestretch before El Bakkali could catch him. Kigen clocked 8:17.45 to El Bakkali's 8:17.70.

"It was my wish to win today," said Kigen. "I am very happy now. Today was not a matter of time, but it was a matter of winning."

A Kenyan also won the women's steeplechase. Norah Jeruto, who did not compete in Tokyo despite being the fastest steeplechaser of the year (8:53.65), won a two-way battle over compatriot Hyvin Kiyeng on the final lap. The two women were even going into the last water jump, but Kiyeng landed flat-footed, lost her momentum, and Jeruto scampered away. Jeruto was clocked in 9:07.33 to Kiyeng's 9:08.55. Olympic silver medalist Courtney Frerichs finished third in 9:08.74; her strong sprint got her past Ethiopia's Mekides Abebe and Kenya's Celliphine Chespol.

British teen Keely Hodgkinson, the Olympic 800m silver medalist, added "Diamond League Champion" to her résumé tonight when she pulled away from Jamaica's Natoya Goule in the homestretch to win in 1:57.98. Gould looked safe for second, but a charging Kate Grace just edged her at the line (both women were timed in 1:58.34). Jemma Reekie, Hodgkinson's Olympic teammate, finished fourth in 1:58.61, the same position as the Tokyo Olympics.

All the event winners tonight earned provisional starting starting spots at next summer's World Athletics Championships (conditions apply) and earned USD 30,000.

(09/10/2021) ⚡AMP
by David Monti

A Strong Japanese Quartet Of Elite Runners In Vienna’s Comeback Marathon

With a strong quartet of Japanese elite runners headed by Kento Kikutani the Vienna City Marathon will go ahead for the first time since April 2019 on Sunday. Austria’s major road race event sees its 38th edition and organizers have registered around 26,000 entries. This includes races at shorter distances. Around 6,000 marathon runners will compete in Vienna on Sunday. The Vienna City Marathon will be the first major marathon worldwide with a strong international elite field and a mass race since the start of the Corona pandemic. It is a World Athletics Label Road Race. The marathon will be streamed live from 8.30 am on Sunday at:

It is the first time in the history of the Vienna City Marathon that a Japanese male elite team will be on the start line. And partly this development has to do with Eliud Kipchoge. When the Kenyan Olympic Champion broke the two hour barrier in the Austrian capital two years ago the world took notice of a unique running spectacle co-organized by the Vienna City Marathon. Back in Japan Kento Kikutani, Yuta Koyama, Koki Yoshioka and Daji Kawai all watched Kipchoge’s race through Vienna’s Prater Park, which is also part of the marathon course.

“I was watching the live stream. This was a huge effort by Kipchoge. I think that good weather conditions in Vienna had a big influence on the result,“ said Kento Kikutani, who has a personal best of 2:07:26 from Lake Biwa this year. He is the fastest of the Japanese quartet and wants to improve his personal best on Sunday: „I will follow to pacers and then I want to go for the win after the 30k point“, said the 27 year-old, who then hold up his watch during the press conference: “At least I already have the same watch Kipchoge used in Vienna!“

Yuta Koyama has a personal best of 2:08:46 and is the second fastest of the four Japanese. He is also ready for a fast race and possibly a personal best. „My plan is to go with the leading group,“ said Koyama, who also clocked his PB in Lake Biwa this year. „Vienna is a good opportunity for me to race despite the corona pandemic.“

Koki Yoshioka and Daji Kawai feature personal records of 2:10:13 ans 2:10:50 respectively. Both target their personal bests on Sunday. “I really appreciate that I am able to run here during the pandemic. My goal is to go under 2:10,“ said Yoshioka while Kawai stated: “Vienna is a traditional race and I am happy to run here. As there are pacers, I think the race will have a good pace. I want to stay calm and will then decide how to react.“

“This will be the most important Vienna City Marathon since the first edition back in 1984,“ said Race Director Wolfgang Konrad. “On Sunday we will send a strong message as the first major international marathon worldwide since the start of the pandemic.“ He compares the situation to when he was an elite runner back in the 80ies. “After a fine Olympic season I was injured in a car crash in 1980. When I could finally start running again I had to stop after two kilometers. Four months later I ran a PB,“ recalled the former steeplechaser, who achieved a fine PB of 8:17.22 in 1982. “Back then it was just about me, now it is about everyone. We were desperate to bring the race back on as early as possible. It was a disaster for us when we had to cancel on short notice in 2020. But we continued to work hard to make the race possible again.“

“We want to stage a great race that stands for joy and motivation. With this event we also want to say thank you to all those who have supported us during this very difficult time," said Kathrin Widu, one of the Managing Directors of the Vienna City Marathon. She explained that runners from 126 nations entered the race. “Most of the foreigners are obviously from EU countries.“ While over 90 % of all runners are vaccinated organizers have implemented strict hygiene rules. Everyone needs to provide a negative Corona test to receive the bib number.

Fellow Managing Director Gerhard Wehr said: “We have never been out of touch regarding organizing races. Under most difficult situations we did stage a number of smaller races whenever possible,“ said Gerhard Wehr. “We are now experiencing a very strong togetherness from all those involved. Everyone wants the Vienna City Marathon to come back.“

More information is available at:

(09/09/2021) ⚡AMP
Vienna City Marathon

Vienna City Marathon

More than 41,000 runners from over 110 nations take part in the Vienna City Marathon, cheered on by hundreds of thousands of spectators. From the start at UN City to the magnificent finish on the Heldenplatz, the excitement will never miss a beat. In recent years the Vienna City Marathon has succeeded in creating a unique position as a marathon...


American Galen Rupp And Olympic Marathon Bronze Medalist Bashir Abdi will Lead Field For The Great North Run Half-Marathon

After having its anniversary celebrations scuppered by the pandemic last year, the Great North Run returns on September 12 with a redesigned course as many of the athletics stars of 2021 meet over the 13.1-mile distance.

For the first time since 2013 there will be a men’s winner other than Mo Farah. The multiple global track gold medallist won the Great North Run from 2014-2019 and the 2020 race was called off. But the new champion could still have strong links to Farah.

The women’s race also sees top runners from the track and roads collide. Hellen Obiri, the world 5000m champion from Kenya, faces Molly Seidel, the American marathon runner who won a surprise bronze medal at the Olympics.

British hopes, meanwhile, are led by Eilish McColgan, who is making her debut at the distance after a fine track season, plus Charlotte Purdue ahead of racing at the Virgin Money London Marathon on October 3.

The athletes will be following in famous footsteps as the event first took place in June 1981. The first man home that day was local runner Mike McLeod and the England footballer Kevin Keegan effectively became the first celebrity runner when he took part wearing a top that incorporated the colours of Newcastle and Sunderland.

“I think there is an extra significance to this year,” says race founder Brendan Foster. “It will demonstrate that the country’s getting back to normal and that ordinary people are getting back to doing what they want to do.”

The course starts and finishes in the centre of Newcastle, crossing the Tyne Bridge twice, with live coverage on BBC.

In the men’s race much will depend on how well Abdi and Rupp have recovered from the Olympic marathon five weeks ago.

Abdi clocked 2:10:00 that day in hot conditions but has a best of 2:04:49 from Tokyo last year. The 32-year-old also has run 60:42 on the old Great North Run course that finished in South Shields.

Rupp won Olympic 10,000m silver behind Farah in 2012 and marathon bronze in Rio in 2016 before finishing eighth in the marathon in Tokyo last month. His half-marathon best is 59:47.

(09/09/2021) ⚡AMP
by Jason Henderson
Great North Run

Great North Run

Great North Run founder Brendan Foster believes Britain is ready to welcome the world with open arms after the launch of the event's most ambitious plan to date. The Great World Run campaign seeks to recruit one runner from every country in the United Nations – 193 in total – to take part in the iconic half marathon in...


Markus Ryffel donates 1984 Olympic shoes to Heritage Collection

Markus Ryffel has generously donated to the World Athletics Heritage Collection one of the running spikes he wore when earning the 5000m silver medal at the 1984 Olympic Games.

The Swiss distance runner donated his left shoe to the collection in June and it is now on permanent view in glorious 360Ëš 3D in the Olympic Athletics Collection room of the Museum of World Athletics (MOWA), the world’s first virtual sports museum.

This evening at the Weltklasse Zürich Heritage Night, Ryffel was able to officially hand over the spike in person to his friend and racing contemporary, World Athletics President Sebastian Coe, who won his second 1500m title in Los Angeles in 1984.

Still the Swiss 5000m record

The final day of the 1984 Olympic athletics programme was hot and damp. The Swiss spectators among the 90,000 crowd in the Memorial Coliseum started to sweat even more as Ryffel geared up for his final sprint, 300 metres from the finish line of the 5000m final.

Portugal’s Antonio Leitao, pre-race favourite Said Aouita of Morocco, and Ryffel were neck and neck in lanes one, two and three. For a moment, even a Swiss Olympic victory seemed possible.

Aouita, however, showed himself unimpressed by Ryffel’s efforts and ran the last 400m in an unheard-of 54.7 seconds. He became the victor of a memorable race: then the third-best time in history for the Moroccan (13:05.59), with fifth place on the world all-time list for Ryffel.

Ryffel’s 13:07.54 still stands as the Swiss record 37 years later. Aouita’s Olympic record was only improved in Beijing in 2008 by Kenenisa Bekele.

Calf injury

While Aouita became the first man to run 5000m within 13 minutes in Rome, 11 months after his triumph in Los Angeles, for Ryffel the silver medal from Los Angeles remained the highlight of an illustrious career.

At the European Championships two years later, he was in a promising position but had to withdraw with an injury, which ended up requiring surgery. His calf muscles – including varicose veins inherited from his father – also thwarted his efforts at his last great aim, the marathon. He made several attempts at completing races, but time and again he had to give up some time after 30 kilometres with calf pain. He never made it to a fourth Olympics and retired from elite sport in late 1991.

New York comes to Uster

Ryffel was by no means bitter; quite the contrary. He had planned ahead during his active years. As a young man he had been a fan of Frank Shorter, the 1972 Olympic marathon champion. So it was not surprising that, aged 22, he accompanied his older brother Urs, himself a fairly successful cyclist, to the 1977 New York Marathon. He finished 16th, just ahead of four-time Olympic champion Lasse Viren.

Both of them were impressed by the “amazing atmosphere” of this mass event.

“We wanted to start something similar in our home-town Uster,” said Ryffel. And so, they established the race around the idyllic Greifensee near Zürich which has been running since 1980, initially 19km long, and over the half marathon distance since 1992. In 1998, Uster even hosted the World Half Marathon Championships, where Paul Koech and Tegla Loroupe from Kenya were the winners.

Running weeks

By the end of the 1970s, Ryffel began organising running weeks in St Moritz and trips to the New York Marathon, alongside his friends and training partners Dietmar Millonig of Austria and Thomas Wessinghage of West Germany.

The trio of runners still work together. Although the goal of the original ‘running weeks’ was to help participants achieve a 3:30 marathon time, the events have now morphed into more general running and fitness holidays in St Moritz and other alpine destinations.

Around the same time, Ryffel opened his first Ryffel Running Shop in Bern together with his brother Urs and business partner Markus Bill. A second shop in Uster followed shortly after, and the business later employed up to 28 people.

“It started in a cow shed next to my parents’ restaurant,” remembers Ryffel. He has since sold the shops to a larger company, and now organises running events, active holidays, trips to marathon races and private coaching.

‘The bike really shaped me’

Ryffel learned early that it was important to be decisive and work hard towards one’s aims. “My parents had a restaurant and a butcher shop, and we had a delivery service. Without it, I would never have become such a good runner. The kilometres on the bike really shaped me because the heart does not distinguish between cycling and running.

“Even in primary school, I did 20 or 30 km on my bike,” he added. “I had my 17 customers to whom I delivered cordon bleu and other meats.”

Ryffel’s parents, however, were not supportive of their son’s sporting ambitions at first. So it was lucky that Ryffel moved to Bern for an apprenticeship in typesetting, where he could be near his supporter and coach Heinz Schild. There he started running in the uniform of the City of Bern gymnastics club.

Ryffel is now 66. He still runs and has calculated from his paper training log that he jogged his 200,000th kilometre in 2020. That’s five times around the earth.

“I can still run regularly – and, most importantly, without pain,” he said. “And if all goes well, I will be running my 98th marathon in Chicago this year.” Because of Covid, the usual group trip to New York cannot happen, and Ryffel wants to participate in this marathon with a group aiming at a 4:30 finish time.

Times have changed. “Just being there is everything now,” he says.

(09/09/2021) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics

American Women Offer Most Intriguing Storyline of 2021 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

Jenny Simpson is the course record holder (4:16.1) and eight-time winner of the Fifth Avenue Mile — the farthest she’s ever raced on the roads. Jenny is also a three-time Olympian (2008, 2012 and 2016 bronze medalist) and three-time World Championship medalist (gold in 2011, silver in 2013 and 2017). Sara  Hall, on the other hand, has run the second fastest marathon ever (2:20:32) for an American woman, and has won 11 USATF National Championships on the roads since 2006, including 10 mile titles in 2018 and 2019. Hall was 2nd American (52:54) when the USATF 10 Mile Championships were last hosted by the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile (CUCB) in 2014.

But Simpson and Hall aren’t the only two American women entered in the 2021 USATF 10 Mile Championships Presented by Toyota. They just define the two extremes of road racing experience represented in what is sure to be an interesting and exciting race for the title of America’s best over 10 miles in 2021.

When Hall and Simpson line up for the women’s-only start at 7:18 a.m. this coming Sunday morning, September 12, they will be joined by Americans Diane Nukuri, Annie Frisbie, Natosha Rogers, Susanna Sullivan, and Bethany Sachtleben, among others. But no runner comes into the race with the same momentum Hall has as winner of three road races this summer, while setting a personal best for 10K on the roads (31:33) at the Mastercard New York Mini. Nukuri may have raced more frequently, with six top-10 road race performances over the last six months, but it was her 5th place result at CUCB 2018 (53:56) that best argues for her inclusion in the conversation about pre-race favorites.

Hall is 38 years old, Simpson is 35 and Nukuri is 36, but this won’t just be a race among veterans if Annie Frisbie has her way. In fact, the 24 year-old Frisbie prevailed over Nukuri at two races this summer, and boasts a 54:00 personal best for 10 miles from the 2019 USATF 10 Mile Championships, when she placed 5th. Another sub-54 minute performer (53:45), Natosha Rogers (30), placed second at the 2017 USATF 10 Mile Championships and returns to the roads after a spring and summer of racing on the track in quest of an Olympic team slot in the 10,000m.

Top DC-area runners Susanna Sullivan (31) and Bethany Sachtleben (29) have proven themselves to be worthy competitors over the years, with Sachtleben placing 3rd among Americans at CUCB 2018 and 2nd among Americans in 2019. Sullivan was 4th American at CUCB in 2014, 5th in 2015 and 3rd in 2017.

American runners will be competing for a total of $26,000 in U.S.-only prize money, from $5,000 for 1st place to $500 for 10th place, paid equally to men and women.

Of course, there’s an international component to the 2021 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile as well. And Kenyans Iveen  Chepkemoi (24) and Caroline Rotich (38) will lead the women’s chase for an international prize pool of $20,000, with $5,000 for 1st place down to $150 for 10th place, again paid equally to men and women. American runners placing in the top-10 overall are able to “double-dip” and claim the appropriate payment from both international and U.S.-only prize pools.

Chepkemoi boasts the fastest 10-mile personal best among all the women (51:43), while Rotich won CUCB in 2013 (52:46).

So, who will prevail? The rookie Simpson? One of the 38 year-old veterans, Hall or Rotich? Or one of the 24 year-old up-and-comers, Frisbie or Chepkemoi? There’s an all-out 10-mile race between here and the answer.

A stellar field of American and international men will take to the same 10-mile course at 7:30 a.m. this Sunday, in pursuit of the same titles, prize money and bonuses as the women. Bonuses on offer include $10,000 for a World Record (44:23 men/51:23 women), another $10,000 for an American Record (45:54 men/51:23 women) — either of which will be split evenly among any men and women record breakers — as well as time bonuses of $1,000 and $750 for the first two runners to break 46:00 for men or 52:00 for women. Finally, there is a special prize pool of $1500/$1000/$500 for both men and women who have taken part in the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA) RunPro Camp or Roads Scholar programs.

Chris Derrick (30) comes into the USATF 10 Mile Championships with the fastest personal best among the American men (46:53), which he ran at CUCB 2018, placing 5th. He, like many of the other men and women in the race, however, has his sights set on one of the many fall marathons this year, and may be racing on tired legs.

Abbabiya Simbassa (30) will also be racing on tired legs, having run the 2021 USATF 20K Championships on Labor Day in New Haven, CT, where he placed 2nd, just one-second shy of the title. Add that to the 2nd places he ran at the 2021 USATF 15K Championships in March, and the recent Asics Falmouth Road Race, and you can imagine how Simbassa’s legs feel going into CUCB 2021. Simbassa was also 2nd American at CUCB 2018 and 2nd at the 2019 USATF 10 Mile Championships (46:57).

A cluster of other American men with 10-mile personal bests that should be competitive include Kiya Dandena (46:58), Augustus Maiyo (47:05), Elkaneh Kibet (47:15), Willie Milam (47:18), Noah Droddy (47:28), and Louis Serafini (47:35). Dandena (32) set his personal best at CUCB 2017, when he was 3rd American; he was also 5th American in 2019 and 7th in 2018. Maiyo (38) set his personal best at the 2019 USATF 10 Mile Championships, while placing 5th. Kibet (38) placed 3rd at the 2017 EQT Pittsburgh 10 Miler. Milam (29) ran his best time at CUCB 2019. Serafini (29) was the 6th American at CUCB 2019, and set his personal best at the 2019 USATF 10 Mile Championships, while Droddy (30) ran his best at the 2016 USATF 10 Mile Championships, placing 2nd.

Despite the presence of so many competitive American men, Kenyan runners typically dominate the overall race up front. Stephen Sambu (33) comes into the race with a personal best of 45:29 from his first CUCB victory in 2014. Sambu clearly has the most experience on DC roads of anyone in the field, with wins in 2014 and 2015, a 4th place finish in 2013, and a 5th in 2019.

Two other Kenyans, Dominic Korir (28) and Edwin Kimutai (28), are also very worthy of mention. Dominic Korir was 6th overall in CUCB 2017 in a time of 46:45. Kimutai ran 2:08:15 for 4th place at the Harmony Geneva marathon for UNICEF last May. Sadly, Kimutai’s wife passed away on August 23rd — he’ll be running in her memory, and for a young daughter suddenly left without a mother.

The top American man and woman will each earn a spot on Team USA for the 2022 World Athletics Half Marathon Championships, to be held in Yangzhou, China, on March 20, 2022. Should the winning American man or woman decline their Team USA slot, the second place finisher will be offered the slot; there will be no “rolling down” beyond second place.

(09/09/2021) ⚡AMP
by Running USA
Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

The Credit Union Cherry Blossom is known as "The Runner's Rite of Spring" in the Nation's Capital. The staging area for the event is on the Washington Monument Grounds, and the course passes in sight of all of the major Washington, DC Memorials. The event serves as a fundraiser for the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, a consortium of 170 premier...


Olympians and Past Champions will Headline New Balance 5th Avenue Mile on Sunday

To close out their seasons, 15 Tokyo Olympians, three Olympic medalists, and two past event champions will race down Manhattan’s most famous thoroughfare in the professional athlete heats at the New Balance 5th Avenue Mile on Sunday, September 12.

The 40th running of the New Balance 5th Avenue Mile – the world’s most iconic road mile race since 1981 – stretches 20 blocks along the east side of Central Park. In addition to age-group heats, there will be an NYPD/FDNY heat taking place to mark the 20th anniversary weekend of 9/11, a Back to School Mile for youth ages 12-18, a George Sheehan Memorial Mile for seniors and NYRR Road Mile Championship heats.

“The New Balance 5th Avenue Mile is an iconic race which invites people of all ages and abilities to run down one of the most famous streets in New York City,” said Ted Metellus, Vice President of Events, NYRR and Race Director, TCS New York City Marathon. “This year will be incredibly exciting with a number of Olympians joining us after their top performances in Tokyo, and we are looking forward to showcasing the city’s resiliency and honoring the work of those participating in the FDNY/NYPD heat to mark 20 years since 9/11.” 

The NYRR Road Mile Championships and professional athlete races will be live streamed on USATF.TV free beginning at 11:35 a.m. ET, with a webcast replay for on-demand-viewing available on USATF.TV+.

Leading the way in the professional men’s race will be three-time U.S. Olympian Matthew Centrowitz who won Rio 2016 Olympic gold in the 1,500 meters and the 5th Avenue Mile in 2012, and two-time U.S. Olympian Paul Chelimo, who won bronze in Tokyo and silver in Rio in the 5,000 meters.

“I’m excited to return to New York for my sixth race down 5th Avenue, a race I first won nine years ago,” Centrowitz said. “Heading back East and ending my season there is like a great end-of-summer tradition, and I’m looking to show the rest of the guys I’ve still got a step or two left in 2021.”

“I’ve already run a 5K and half marathon in New York, so now I just need to check the mile and the marathon off my list,” Chelimo said. “Running a straight line down 5th Avenue is very different than running laps on a track, and I’ve got more road racing experience than the other guys in this field. I’m confident in my finish, so if I can keep it close through halfway, I think I can beat the milers at their own game. Go hard or suffer for the rest of your life."

Challenging them will be two-time U.S. Olympian and 2016 Olympic bronze medalist in the 800 meters Clayton Murphy, Olympian and 2018 event champion Jake Wightman, and Olympian and European Indoor Championships gold medalist Adel Mechaal.

A trio of other Americans to watch will be Tokyo Olympians Joe Klecker, Mason Ferlic, and Hilary Bor, with Ferlic racing the event for the third time and Klecker and Bor making their debuts in the event after competing in Tokyo earlier this year.

The professional women’s race will see a first-time winner, with top contenders including USATF Road Mile Championships runner-up Shannon Osika, British indoor record-holder and Olympian Jemma Reekie, and European Indoor Championships gold medalist Amy-Eloise Markovc.

About New York Road Runners (NYRR)

NYRR’s mission is to help and inspire people through running. Since 1958, New York Road Runners has grown from a local running club to the world’s premier community running organization. NYRR’s commitment to New York City’s five boroughs features races, virtual races, community events, free youth running initiatives and school programs, the NYRR RUNCENTER featuring the New Balance Run Hub, and training resources that provide hundreds of thousands of people each year with the motivation, know-how, and opportunity to Run for Life. NYRR’s premier event, and the largest marathon in the world, is the TCS New York City Marathon. Held annually on the first Sunday in November, the race features a wide population of runners, from the world’s top professional athletes to a vast range of competitive, recreational, and charity runners. To learn more, visit

(09/08/2021) ⚡AMP
by Running USA
New Balance 5th Avenue Mile

New Balance 5th Avenue Mile

The New Balance 5th Avenue Mile opens a beautiful 20-block stretch of 5th Avenue to runners of all ages and abilities who want to run their best mile in New York City. Special races include a youth mile, the George Sheehan Memorial Mile for runners age 60 and over, the NYRR Road Mile Championships, and Olympic-caliber professional men's and women's...


Sir Mo Farah out of Great North Run but he will return to competition next year

Sir Mo Farah will not defend his Great North Run title this weekend but will return to competition next year.

Britain’s most decorated athlete, who has won the last six GNRs, took part in Soccer Aid last weekend despite a stress fracture in his foot.

He appeared briefly as a substitute at the Etihad before limping off and it has been confirmed he has no plans to race in the foreseeable future.

Farah, 38, failed to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics in June and his reaction sparked speculation he was about to retire.

“I’ve always said if I can’t compete with the best I won’t just go to be in a final,” he said that evening. “Tonight showed it’s not good enough.”

However, Great North Run founder Sir Brendan Foster revealed: “I can assure you Mo isn’t going to finish and I can assure you he’ll compete in the Great North Run again.

“He literally can’t run this weekend and he’s gutted about that as he’s won every year since 2014. We’ve never had anybody as successful as him and everyone will miss him.

“But forget all the talk that he is going to finish. He’s assured me he’ll be running seriously again next summer.”

Next summer sees three major events, with the Birmingham Commonwealth Games sandwiched between World and European Athletics Championships.

The Worlds take place in Oregon where Farah lived and trained for six years. The Somali-born Londoner is a six-time world champion.

(09/08/2021) ⚡AMP
by Alex Spink
Great North Run

Great North Run

Great North Run founder Brendan Foster believes Britain is ready to welcome the world with open arms after the launch of the event's most ambitious plan to date. The Great World Run campaign seeks to recruit one runner from every country in the United Nations – 193 in total – to take part in the iconic half marathon in...


Four-time world 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce will not compete in the Diamond League final in Zurich

According to her agent Paul Doyle, she has elected not to take part in the two-day final, which starts on Wednesday. Fraser-Pryce had qualified for the 100m final based on her previous performances this season on the Diamond League circuit.

While she had qualified for the final, Doyle says that she will not feature in Zurich.

"She is not competing in Zurich. She has not withdrawn so to speak, she was never confirmed," Doyle said.

Furthermore Doyle said that Fraser Pryce is considering ending her season now, however, they are considering one more meet.

"(We) are considering one more (meet), but (that has) not (been) confirmed yet," Doyle added.

Fraser-Pryce last competed in Poland on Sunday at the Kamila Skolimowska Memorial meet, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold event, where she won the 100m in a time of 10:81 seconds. She has run three races on the circuit since the Tokyo Olympics.

(09/08/2021) ⚡AMP
by Daniel Wheeler

World marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge launches foundation

Eliud Kipchoge has officially launched his own foundation referred to as ‘the Eliud Kipchoge Foundation’.

Fresh from winning his second consecutive Olympic gold medal in his specialty during the just concluded Tokyo Olympic Games, Kipchoge said the foundation will have a strong focus on education and environment and will be seeking to strengthen communities both locally and internationally.

“My mission is to give all children in the world access to knowledge and education. I want those children to grow up into healthy adults in a green and breathing world where forests keep our people safe.

“I want to contribute and grow the movement in education and environmental protection through my Foundation, to reach the people in the world with my voice,” said Kipchoge.

He also added that he wants to raise awareness and to raise finances to build libraries, schools and grow more trees on the forest sites that will help the upcoming generation in terms of clean air.

“I was lucky in my life to have access to books and knowledge from a young age. It taught me to value life and that is why I have decided to establish the foundation that will help the upcoming generation who also must know the value of having a good environment,” he added.

The Eliud Kipchoge Foundation focuses on two pillars: education and environment and both subjects have been close to Kipchoge’s heart throughout his life and are areas where he foresees making an impact for a better world.

“Education helps you grow, and it can help you grow your community alongside you and access to information is crucial for a good education and a good library is the foundation for this.

“My dream is for all schools and kindergartens in the world to have good libraries right from a very young age, children need to get in contact with books, with learning. This builds a good foundation for children and books can inspire, also to those who do not have access to the internet,” he said.

He also added that he has been inspired by books for his entire life and there are a lot of talented people in Africa and around the world, who may get inspired and help to solve problems people are facing in their communities.

The objective of the Foundation is to sponsor school fees and to give more children access to education, build libraries and inspire people through the importance of education and the power of books.

In terms of environment, Kipchoge said that it is the second pillar for the foundation. The foundation wants to provide a healthy world for the next generations therefore it must all provide the right actions to do so.

“I want the world to breathe well and without forests, you cannot have ideal conditions for training. As a farmer, I know about the importance of a good climate, planting of trees and using the land in a sustainable way, so people can grow healthy food and plants, also for the next generations.

“I believe together we can make dry land green again, which has a huge impact on biodiversity, water availability and healthy food. You can always start helping, even by adopting trees. I began already with adopting a forest near our training camp to help save it. I want to reach out to help save and grow forests around the world,” added Kipchoge.

(09/08/2021) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich

2021 Tokyo Marathon Cancelled Due to Extension of State of Emergency

With the government set to extend the state of emergency in Tokyo and other parts of the country, as of Sept. 6 it is all but certain that the Oct. 17 Tokyo Marathon will be cancelled. 

The published guidelines for the 2021 race state, "In the event that a state of emergency has been issued one month prior to the event as part of the government's efforts against the coronavirus pandemic, or if the local government has issued a request not to hold the race, the Tokyo Marathon will be cancelled."

The current state of emergency in Tokyo runs through Sept. 12, but as it is expected to be extended 2~3 weeks it will still be in force on the 17th. This makes the chances that the Tokyo Marathon will go ahead virtually non-existent.

The event's organizers, the Tokyo Marathon Foundation, plan to hold a board meeting in mid-September to make a final decision.

The 2021 Tokyo Marathon was originally scheduled for Mar. 7, but in October last year in light of pandemic conditions the Foundation's board decided to postpone it to Oct. 17 this year. 

In June this year event organizers announced that general division runners living outside Japan would not be permitted to run. The 2022 Tokyo Marathon is scheduled for Mar. 6.

(09/07/2021) ⚡AMP
by Brett Larner
Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. Sponsored by Tokyo Metro, the Tokyo Marathon is an annual event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World...


Usain Bolt turned musician released his first album, Country Yutes, on September third

After Usain Bolt retired from track and field, fans everywhere wondered what the eight-time Olympic gold medalist would do next. Would he coach? Become a professional soccer player? Ride off into the sunset and enjoy retirement? Instead, he did what few people expected: he turned his focus to music.

Last Friday Bolt finally released his debut album, Country Yutes, giving his fans a chance to hear what he’s been up to over the last few years.

“If you have followed my career over the years, you would see me always dancing and listening to music,” Bolt said in a press release. “It’s no secret to the world that I love music. Music has just always been a part of my DNA.”

This is not the first time we’ve gotten a taste of Usain Bolt the musician. You may remember in 2019 he produced three dancehall EPs, Olympe Rosé Riddim, Immortal Riddim and Clockwork Riddim, which featured Jamaican artists. The first song on his new album, Living the Dream, which he produced with his close friend and vocalist, NJ Walker, was released earlier this year.

The rest of the album includes 14 tracks that feature Walker, along with Jamaican artists. You can stream Country Yutes on most streaming platforms, including Spotify and Apple Music.

(09/07/2021) ⚡AMP
by Brittany Hambleton

Hiwot Gebrekidan and Kenenisa Bekele will lead powerful Ethiopian Challenge in Berlin

The BMW BERLIN-MARATHON will get underway on Sunday, September 26 with high quality elite fields headed by the Ethiopian superstar Kenenisa Bekele on his fourth appearance in Germany’s biggest and most spectacular marathon, while his compatriot Hiwot Gebrekidan will run in Berlin’s women’s field for the first time. Gebrekidan is currently the fastest female marathon runner in the world this year. The BMW BERLIN-MARATHON is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors and a Platinum Label Road Race, awarded by World Athletics, the international governing body of athletics.

Kenenisa Bekele is 39 now and will be running the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON for the fourth time. He won the race in 2016 but dropped out the next year and returned in 2019 to triumph once again. In both victories the Ethiopian missed the then world record by a matter of seconds.

In terms of his achievements on the track and cross country, Kenenisa Bekele is the greatest long distance runner of all time. The multiple world record holder won the 5,000m at the 2008 Olympic Games as well as at the 2009 World Championships, took the 10,000m title at the Olympics in 2004 and 2008 as well as at the World Championships in 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2009. In addition, he has won eleven gold medals at the World Cross Country Championships.

At the same time, Kenenisa Bekele’s marathon career has been by no means a smooth one. He has failed to finish three of his six races at the classic distance, including an attempt on the world record in Dubai in 2017 and Berlin later in the same year.

Yet on two occasions Kenenisa Bekele was able to convert his enormous potential to the marathon though there was still an element of disappointment attached, since he missed breaking the world record by a handful of seconds each time. In 2016 in Berlin he went within six seconds of the then global best, improving his own best to 2:03:03. Two years ago Bekele won again, this time running 2:01:41, two seconds outside the world record which his Kenyan rival Eliud Kipchoge had improved to 2:01:39 in the meantime. This achievement in 2019 means the Ethiopian is the second fastest marathon runner in history. It may well be that the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON on September 26 is his last chance to break the world record at the distance. “I’m looking forward to the race in the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON and all my training has been with this in mind. It’s gone well. I am doing everything to make sure my preparation is perfect,” said Kenenisa Bekele.

Ethiopia’s superstar will face two strong compatriots among his rivals. Guye Adola made an outstanding marathon debut in 2017 beside the River Spree with second place in 2:03:46. His time was record for a marathon debutant and Adola even put the eventual winner, Eliud Kipchoge, under pressure, leading the great Kenyan until shortly before 40 kilometres. Another Ethiopian who surprised many on his marathon debut is Olika Adugna. He will be running in Berlin on September 26 with a best of 2:06:15 from winning debut in Dubai in 2020.

The women’s field includes the fastest marathoner in the world this year, Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan, who won the Milan Marathon in a personal best of 2:19:35 in April. Purity Rionoripo of Kenya (pb 2:20:39) and the Ethiopian Shure Demise (pb 2:20:59) should also be relied upon to offer strong challenges.

More information is available online at:

(09/07/2021) ⚡AMP
BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...


The Fargo Marathon ready to make return in late September

While last year's Fargo Marathon took place virtually, this year's iteration will make a return to in-person running.

Though the marathon usually takes place in May, it will start at 7:30 a.m., Saturday September 25th this year.

"Last year was virtual for obvious reasons. In a normal year, when we have our event in May, you know, we're typically around 15,000 people. This year, we're going to be down probably around 10," said Mark Knutson, executive director of the Fargo Marathon.

Knutson owed the dip in expected participants to it being held later in the year and the still-present pandemic.

However, he said, it will be great for the community to have it back.

"I think the community's pretty, pretty stoked about it. We send letters out to the people that live on the course and we have bands out there and we have parties and the buzz around town is that people are really excited to have this happening again," said Knutson.

Those still interested in signing up for the marathon can do so by visiting

(09/07/2021) ⚡AMP
by Ben Morris
Fargo Marathon

Fargo Marathon

The Fargo Marathon is a week full of events, The Fargo Marathon is bound to have something for everyone. From the Cyclothon, Furgo Dog Run, Largest Kid's Race, 5K Walk/Run, 10K, Half Marathon, Full Marathon and Relays, there is a distance for all! Start and Finish inside the Fargo Dome - ...


How To Avoid Stomach Cramps When Running

There is nothing worse than a rumbling stomach while you are out on a run. Whether you have a side stitch (side cramps) or feel the need to rush to the nearest porta-potty, stomach issues can really cramp your running style. Learn how to avoid stomach cramps when running with these tips.

Warm Up

A cramp in your side (side stitch) is—just like it sounds—a severe pain in your side body. It typically occurs right below the rib cage. It is not actually related to your stomach or digestive system. While the exact cause of side stitches is unknown, some theories suggest that it could be related to blood flow to the liver, spasms in the diaphragm, or stretching of the ligaments.

To prevent side stitches, warm up properly. This gives your body time to accommodate to faster breathing and adjust to stretching ligaments.


Do you skip drinking fluids during a run because you worry they will cause sloshing and cramping? It is time to adjust your strategy. This can lead to dehydration, which actually exacerbates stomach issues.

When you are exercising at an intense level, your body diverts blood away from the stomach in order to supply your muscles with much needed oxygenated blood. This means that digestion can be negatively affected.

Drink adequate fluids in the days leading up to your training session or race, and remember to drink throughout your run. 

Practice Fueling

When you train for a long-distance race, you put in hours of running each week to gradually build your muscular and cardiorespiratory endurance. However, just like training your legs for those long runs, you also need to train your gut.

Often, newer athletes skip fueling during training but attempt to use a sports drink or gel during their first long race. The result? Stomach cramps, thanks to a belly that has never practiced processing fuel under such circumstances.

Luckily, the fix for this is easy. Simply practice your fueling strategy during training.

This will help teach your stomach how to process fuel under conditions of decreased digestive blood flow along with the jostling motion of running. 

Do Not Over-Fuel

It can be tricky to nail down the correct amount of fuel to take in during a long run. But one thing is certain: trying to replace every calorie you burn is a recipe for disaster. Instead, aim to take in around 30 to 60 grams of carbohydrates (about 120 to 240 calories) per hour on runs lasting longer than one hour and 15 minutes. 

If you are training for a long-course triathlon or ultra-marathon, you might bump that range up to 30 to 90 grams of carbohydrates per hour. As you start experimenting with fueling, start at the lower end of this range. If you feel like you need more energy, you can gradually work your way up to the higher end of the range on subsequent runs and see how your stomach tolerates this.

Minimize Fat

Fat is a satiating nutrient. It slows down digestion and helps us feel full longer. While this is great for everyday life, it is not ideal before a training session. You do not want to start running with a belly that is still feeling full and risk cramping. Low-fat, low-fiber breakfast ideas include:

Cereal with milk and a banana

Toaster waffle topped with peaches

Bagel with a small amount of cream cheese

Rice with a poached egg

Sandwich with a small amount of peanut butter, banana, and honey

The exception to this tip is if you are a fat-adapted athlete who is practicing the keto diet. In that case, you should follow your normal routine, as foods outside of that could cause stomach cramping. For most athletes, however, a standard moderate carbohydrate diet will lead to the best performance.

Know Your Lactose Tolerance

Lactose is sugar that is found in dairy products. Some people lack enough of the digestive enzyme known as lactase to properly break down this sugar. This is what is commonly known as lactose intolerance. If you have this condition, eating certain amounts of dairy can cause stomach cramping and diarrhea.

Interestingly, you can develop lactose intolerance later in life, even if you previously were able to tolerate dairy. Lactase production decreases over time for certain people based on genetic factors. For others, a gastrointestinal infection or inflammatory bowel disease may cause secondary lactose intolerance.

Digest Before Running

Most experts recommend eating a meal about one to four hours prior to running, though this is very individualized. Some runners have iron stomachs that allow them to eat a burger 30 minutes before a jog, while others might need two hours to process a small sandwich and some fruit.

If you often experience stomach cramps when running, try eating about three to four hours prior to your training session or event. Allowing more time between eating and running gives you more flexibility for the type and amount of food you can eat, as your body has ample time to digest.

Avoid NSAIDs

Ibuprofen and naproxen are NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). While some athletes might take these medications prior to or during a run to stave off any muscle soreness, this practice increases the risk of stomach upset and cramping.

In addition, overusing NSAIDs on long runs has been shown to increase the risk of hyponatremia (a dangerous diluting of blood sodium levels) and kidney damage, and could impair muscle recovery. It is wise to avoid these medications before or during a run unless a doctor has advised you to take them.

Rule Out Medical Conditions

In some cases, stomach cramps could indicate a food sensitivity or intolerance, irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease, or another digestive complication. It is best to consult with a healthcare professional.

(09/06/2021) ⚡AMP
by VeryWell Fit

Ethiopians Betesfa Getahun and Gelete Burka will be the fastest athletes on the start list for the Vienna City Marathon next Sunday

Strong Ethiopians will feature world-class personal bests of 2:05:28 and 2:20:45 respectively.

The 38th edition of Austria’s biggest road running event is the first major international marathon featuring a strong international elite field and a mass race since the start of the Corona pandemic. Including races at shorter distances a total of 25,000 athletes have registered for the event. 6,000 of them will run the marathon. The Vienna City Marathon is a World Athletics Marathon Label Road Race.

Betesfa Getahun heads the elite start list which includes ten runners who have personal bests of sub 2:10. The Ethiopian ran 2:05:28 in his debut marathon in Amsterdam two years ago. Returning to the Vienna City Marathon will be Switzerland’s record holder Tadesse Abraham, who was the runner-up here in 2019 with 2:07:24.

With a personal best of 2:06:40 Tadesse Abraham is among the fastest European marathon runners. Due to breathing problems he dropped out of the Olympic marathon in Sapporo (Japan) a month ago. While this was of course a major disappointment he then quickly decided to go for the Vienna City Marathon. “I am in form and I want to show it. I am really looking forward to Vienna as I have such great memories of this race,” he said.

The women’s field includes six runners with personal bests of sub 2:28. Gelete Burka is the fastest on the start list with 2:20:45. She achieved this time in Dubai in 2018 and then won the marathons in Ottawa (2018) and in Paris (2019). The women’s race will also feature the Swiss marathon record holder: Fabienne Schlumpf ran 2:26:14 in her debut in Bern earlier this year and then finished in a very strong 12th position at the Olympic marathon.

(09/06/2021) ⚡AMP
Vienna City Marathon

Vienna City Marathon

More than 41,000 runners from over 110 nations take part in the Vienna City Marathon, cheered on by hundreds of thousands of spectators. From the start at UN City to the magnificent finish on the Heldenplatz, the excitement will never miss a beat. In recent years the Vienna City Marathon has succeeded in creating a unique position as a marathon...


Letsile Tebogo and Udodi Onwuzurike set the pace for Africa’s new generation of sprinters

Letsile Tebogo, Udodi Onwuzurike, Christine Mboma, Anthony Pasela, Imaobong Nse Uko and Benjamin Richardson are just some of Africa’s rising sprint stars, and their achievements this season could signal a revival for the continent.

When Tebogo opted to compete in the 100m and 200m, despite hailing from a country best known for its quarter-milers, it was with the aim of breaking barriers and inspiring a change in Botswana.

But the 18-year-old surpassed even his own expectations in Nairobi when he gifted his country its first ever global gold medal in the 100m, setting national U20 records of 10.22 and 10.11 in the process. His 10.11 clocking actually broke the senior national record, surpassing Makwala’s former mark of 10.20 set seven years ago.

“The motivation to get into athletics was from watching the big guys like Isaac Makwala, Karabo Sibanda and Nijel Amos,” said Tebogo. “However, I just really wanted some change in the country, so I had to do something different from the big guys, that’s why I opted to compete in the 100m and 200m. I’m really proud of my performance and I know back at home they’re proud of me bringing the first gold medal to Botswana.”

Tebogo led a 1-2 for Africa as Benjamin Richardson of South Africa took silver in 10.28 while Cuba’s Shainer Rengifo earned bronze with 10.32.

For Richardson, who would go on to anchor his country to Africa’s first ever gold in the men’s 4x100m in a world U20 record of 38.51, the podium finishes by Botswana and South Africa in the men’s 100m is the start of something big for the continent.

“We’ve started to become better,” he says. “Two Africans finishing first and second; you can see that there’s something coming. We’re going to dominate soon.”

Tebogo also competed in the 200m, which had been regarded as his stronger event. A sprint double was not to be, though, as he eventually took silver behind Nigeria’s Udodi Onwuzurike, who didn’t appear as a likely medal contender in the build-up to the championship.

Onwuzurike also started in track and field when he was about eight years old, and he grew up watching his brother Chiebuka, who is older by almost six years, compete in the 100m and 200m. The older Onwuzurike went as far as competing for Boston University and holds personal bests of 10.46 and 21.37. For the younger Onwuzurike, the dream was to take things a notch higher: become an NCAA champion, an Olympic champion and a world champion. And so began his quest.

At the World U20 Championships in Nairobi, Onwuzurike’s first ever outing for Nigeria, he lowered his personal best from 20.78 to 20.47 in his heat, and then clocked 20.13 in the semifinals which would have been a championship record but for the wind (2.4m/s).

He then stormed to gold with a national U20 record of 20.21 to become the first Nigerian in World U20 Championships history to win 200m gold since 1996 when Francis Obikwelu won the sprint double, and the second fastest Nigerian over the distance in 2021. South Africa’s Sinesipho Dambile clocked a season’s best of 20.48 for bronze, completing the African sweep.

Though stung by his loss to Onwuzurike, Tebogo said that the overall 200m result was a good one for Africa. “I’m really proud and excited about this,” he said. “It (an African sweep) was my dream. Even in the call room I told Dambile ‘Bro we have to do this. We have to bring the medals back home’. I felt it should be a 1-2 or 2-3, but maybe the Nigerian overheard us and that’s why he came to beat us,” he added with a chuckle.

For Onwuzurike, who is off to Stanford University soon, making history for Nigeria and Africa is a dream come true.

“I would say it’s surreal, it’s amazing,” he said. “I never thought I would be able to make it to this level of track, I never even knew I would be able to go to college running track. Track was always first like a fun sport because I’ve always been a little quick but it’s amazing. Having this as one of my last high school races before I go to college, it’s an amazing moment.

“I had a very rough year and got injured numerous times and felt my numbers were not really good at showing what I’m capable of, so coming out and being able to show on the global stage that I’m truly the best is amazing. It’s all I ever wanted, all I ever prayed for.”

(09/06/2021) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics

Fraser-Pryce wins women's 100m at Kamila Skolimowska Memorial in meeting record 10.81 with De Grasse cruising home in the men's 200m

Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce and Andre De Grasse scored comfortable wins at the Kamila Skolimowska Memorial meet in Chorzow, Poland on Sunday (September 5).

Fraser-Pryce, who missed the last Diamond League women's 100m in Paris at the end of August after withdrawing with fatigue, looked back on form at the World Continental Gold event as she set a meeting record of 10.81 to take the 100m, breaking 11 seconds for the 12th time this season.

Swiss sprinter Mujinga Kambundji was second in 11.08 ahead of Britain's Daryll Neita who ran 11.15.

The 34-year-old looks set for an exciting rematch with Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah in the Zurich Diamond League Final on Thursday.

Tokyo 2020 200m gold medalist De Grasse was an easy winner of the half-lap event, coming off the bend strongly to cross the line in front in 20.21.

Fellow Canadian Jerome Blake was second in 20.32 with Italy's sprint relay hero Filippo Tortu third in 20.40.

As befits the competition held in memory of the Sydney 2000 hammer gold medallist, field events played a big part in the Continental Tour Gold meeting.

The top three in the men's hammer in Tokyo filled the top three places in Chorzow but in different places.

Reigning four-time hammer world champion Pawel Fajdek won home bragging rights with a fine final throw to beat Wojciech Nowicki.

The Olympic gold medallist led with 77.45m, but Fajdek went out to 79.60m to take victory after his bronze in Japan.

Norway's Eivind Henriksen (77.38m) was third after his Tokyo silver.

Double Olympic champion Ryan Crouser took his unbeaten run to 25 contests with victory in the shot put.

The American was not at his brilliant best but 22.39m in round two was enough to take victory with compatriot Joe Kovacs (22.00m) and New Zealand's Tom Walsh (21.68m) second and third just as they were in Tokyo.

World record holder Crouser suffered his last defeat at the 2019 Doha World Championships.

Olympic silver medallist Chris Nilsen kept up his strong recent form with 5.86m to take victory in the men's pole vault.

Fellow American KC Lightfoot took second on countback ahead of EJ Obiena of the Philippines with both men clearing 5.80m.

Reigning world champion Sam Kendricks was only sixth with a best clearance of 5.70m.

Gianmarco Tamberi won the high jump with a third-time success at 2.30m.

The Italian then failed with two attempts at 2.36m which would have broken the meet record held by joint-Olympic gold medallist Mutaz Essa Barshim.

(09/06/2021) ⚡AMP

10 Of The Worst Training Tips You Hear In Running

Bad Tip One: Your body needs to look a certain way or weigh a certain amount.Being an athlete is all about finding your strong. Every runner that has long-term growth and success fuels their body adequately. For some athletes, that leads to complying with that formula espoused by Mr. Crap-Face. For other athletes, it means a body that looks different and weighs more or less. All are equally valid. And here's the biggest point of all: all are optimizing what they are capable of given their unique genetics and backgrounds. 

The problem is that a formula might be interpolated from an outlier, a person that won an Olympic medal or Western States. Interpolating from outliers is crap science, and it's crap physiology. Athletes that try to fight against their unique genetics and backgrounds will not adapt to training stimuli efficiently, and will almost always get slower with time. That time might not be tomorrow, but trying to fit into someone else's clothes or onto their scale is a ticking time bomb for athletic growth.

Three years ago, the New Zealand rowing team had a reckoning. A survey indicated that all but one athlete was at risk of low energy availability. Doctors, nutritionists, and coaches worked with athletes to change the culture and approach to fueling. Rower Brooke Donoghue summarized the wisdom that they applied leading up to the Olympics: "Now I understand being lean isn't a priority, being strong is," she said. "It doesn't matter what I sit at on the scales. It's opened us up to understand it's not about a number but more about a good feeling, knowing we're fuelling well."

In Tokyo, Donoghue won a silver medal, and the whole team had breakthrough successes. Low energy availability from a focus on body weight can hurt the endocrine system and overall health. The New Zealand rowing team learned something else. Eating enough can fuel better performance, recovery, and adaptation. Food can act as a natural, legal, fun PED.

Move, eat, love, repeat. You found your strong. And your strong is perfect.

Bad Tip Two: Easy runs need to be at a certain heart rate all the time.

The body does not work in cordoned-off physiological zones, where exceeding aerobic threshold is a crime scene for athletic growth. When you feel good, your easy runs can be a bit faster. When you feel tired or are not recovering rapidly, your easy runs can put snails to shame. The art and science of easy running require that an athlete listens to their body, not to a calculator. 

This tip is grounded in the truth that easy runs can be very easy, and often should be very easy. The aerobic system should be built from the ground up. Just make sure that focusing on the aerobic system doesn't neglect the musculoskeletal, biomechanical, and neuromuscular systems. You have to go faster to get faster, in moderation.

Bad Tip Three: To be a pro, you have to do doubles/100 miles a week/complicated workouts

This is the general catch-all heading for tips that you might hear from an elite athlete talking about their own training. The problem is that all of these tips are overwhelmed by confounding variables, and sometimes people get the lines of causation mixed up. Doubles are an important feature of some pro athlete training, but also coincide with athletes that have the time and physiology to handle them. High-volume weeks can be a proxy variable for stress and adaptation, but the cells don't give a single frick about a week, and only care about a mile in association with the chemical context that goes along with it (we went into detail on our podcast here). Big double-threshold workouts or supercompensation hill sessions could help growth, but are also just a part of training for athletes that are tough as nails and have big dreams.

Successful athletes can likely be successful using multiple approaches, but we can't prove a negative. So we are left adding up a bunch of N=1 experiments. Don't feel obligated to mimic the specific approach that works for someone else. General principles are your friend (doubles/100-mile weeks = consistent and frequent chronic stress, workout design = efficient and strategic acute stress). Specific rules can just be dogma.

Bad Tip Four: It's all about time on feet.

This tip is mostly for the ultra crowd. Time on feet may be helpful if it involves moving efficiently on trails, including hiking, with plenty of time for recovery and adaptation. But there is no evidence and little physiological theory that chronic weekly totals of dozens of hours on feet will help an athlete move more efficiently (or be healthier). While that stuff may work for some people, you can be fast and healthy by spending time in the morning doing your activity, then living your life normally (periodically mixing in some bigger acute stresses along the way), even when training for races that take 12-24+ hours.

Bad Tip Five: The more training volume and/or vert, the better.

Connected to the last two points, volume and vert totals are proxy variables for stress. But they are not actual stress as experienced by the cells and body systems that drive performance. A 10-mile run might just be a 10-mile run. Or it might act a bit like a 20-mile run if you've been up all night with a kid, are dealing with a mental health lull, or are preparing a work presentation. One of the hardests things to internalize for an athlete is that the body can actually adapt to the lower volume just as well as higher volume as long as stress is calibrated appropriately for their unique context.

The body doesn't know miles, it knows stress. And more stress is not always better, particularly when some champions are specifically chosen due to being genetic anomalies when it comes to managing chronic training stress.

Bad Tip Six: You should hike a hill in training if you'd hike it in racing

Specificity is important sometimes, just don't go overboard with it. I see so many athletes sell themselves short by hiking every uphill because they read that tip in an ultra running article, or heard it from a friend. The problem is that it's very hard to level up if your brain is constraining you in advance of your body saying it needs constraints.

If you hike all of the time, that is awesome and valid. But if you are healthy enough to run, try to run a couple steps more on your next run. It can be so freaking exciting to see where this athletic journey goes when we take off the constraints that were holding us back.

Bad Tip Seven: You can always get all of the nutrition you need from food and sunlight

Maybe you can! But through coaching and research, my wife/co-coach Megan and I see a lot of bloodwork, and there are many athletes that can't. Pay special attention to ferritin and vitamin D. Sometimes, leafy greens and UV rays don't cut it, and that's OK. If you're unsure, get blood tests from your doctor or a company like Inside Tracker.

Bad Tip Eight: You can't lose fitness in a taper

True, your aerobic system won't undergo a fundamental remodeling in a couple weeks. But blood volume, VO2 max, cardiac output, and neuromuscular efficiency all can detrain rather quickly. It's important to rest more, but don't shut down like you're a bear in November. Most of our athletes maintain their normal frequency at 30-50% lower training volume, with a rest day or two more for ultras, plus a bit of intensity too. 

Bonus Tip: Minimal shoes are better for health and/or performance

I don't think people say this piece of advice anymore, but it's worth addressing just in case someone went into a coma after reading Born To Run. First, to that coma person, did you like The Apprentice? You won't now. 

Second, for the love of all that is good in this world, wear shoes that are comfortable for you, not shoes that are comfortable for someone who may or may not have a functioning achilles tendon in a few years. Different things work for everyone.

Bad Tip Nine: Death before DNF

Running is not a test, it's a celebration. 

As Dani Rojas said in Ted Lasso, "[The sports psychologist] helped me remember that even though futbol is life, futbol is also death. And that futbol is futbol too. But mostly that futbol is life!"

(09/05/2021) ⚡AMP

This Lithuanian Runner Broke the 24-Hour World Record that Stood Since 1997

The Lithuanian runner averaged a 7:29/mile pace for a full day.

Sania Sorokin has claimed another world best in 2021, breaking the 24-hour record set by legendary Greek ultrarunner Yiannis Kouros in 1997.

Kouros’s mark (303.4 kilometers or 188.52 miles for a 7:38/mile pace) remained elusive until August 30, when Sorokin lined up at the UltraPark Weekend 24-hour race in Poland. The 39-year-old Lithuanian runner averaged a 7:29-per-mile pace for the entire day on his way into the history books. His official distance was marked at 309.4 kilometers (192.25 miles).

“[The world record] was my dream for about five years,” Sorokin told Runner’s World. “It was an almost perfect race, but I know I can do better.”

Though unsponsored, Sorokin is no stranger to high-level performances such as this. His accolades include three 24-hour world championships since 2015, winning the famed Spartathlon ultra in 2017, and breaking the 100-mile and 12-hour world records in April this year.

His initial plan after his April success was to go for the 24-hour world record at the 2021 World Championships in October. However, the race was canceled in June due to the pandemic, so Sorokin chose the UltraPark Weekend 24-hour race in nearby Poland to go for his record attempt.

“Poland is not far from me,” Sorokin said. “This is a very high standard race, Poland has very strong ultrarunners, and the track is very good. I thought it was good to go for the 24-hour world record.”

In preparation for a record run, Sorokin increased his mileage for this training block. His weeks ranged from 142 miles at their lowest to 173 at his peak. He included speed work, while also doing cross-training, such as weightlifting, cycling, and swimming.

Sorokin lost his job as a dealer at a casino in January because of the pandemic, so he’s had more time to “train like a pro.” He credits this for his success and why he showed up in peak form to his record run.

Though he was on pace for the entire run, he did run into issues during the night.

“The conditions, the weather, the track, the organization, everything was perfect,” Sorokin said. “There was some crisis at night with my stomach. It stopped working well for a few hours, but then began to work again, and I really didn’t know if the record was to be or not to be until 21 hours of running.”

In those final three hours, Sorokin routinely crunched the numbers in his head. Finally, with 40 minutes remaining, he reached the 300-kilometer mark. Two more laps would give him the record. He did that and then some, breaking the world record by six kilometers.

Since breaking the record, Sorokin returned to Lithuania and has been inundated with interview requests. He has a couple ideas for what he wants to do next, but he said his focus right now is finding a sponsor for 2022.

“I need to find a sponsorship for next year because soon I need to be back to work,” Sorokin said. “I am in peak form, so I feel like I can still do better. I don’t exactly know what’s next for me. Maybe the 48-hour record.”

That record currently stands at 473.49 kilometers (294.21 miles), or put simply, a 9:47/mile pace for two days straight. It was set in 1996 by Kouros.

(09/05/2021) ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World

3 Ways You Can Overcome Bad Runs

How you can look on the bright side of a poor outing and find motivation to keep going.

It’s entirely too easy for people to criticize their own performance, and harder to be kind to themselves when they don’t have the race or run they’d hoped for. As the saying goes, we’re our own worst critics.

Even when we do well, we sometimes tell ourselves it wasn’t the training plan that we dedicated months of our lives to following; it was luck. As runners—and humans—it can be hard to believe we’re deserving of success. And when we have that “off” run, we often default, unfortunately, to beating ourselves up over the fact that we could have worked harder.

Over time, being too harsh on yourself can lead to lack of motivation, burnout, and even feeling resentful toward other runners. Here are three tips to help you become more compassionate with yourself, stay motivated, and ultimately be your own best teammate.

→ Use positive self-talk

Credit yourself with the work you put into your training and your successes along the way! Remind yourself whenever you’re feeling down: “I trained for weeks. I put in all this work and was consistent, and I’m stronger and faster than I was four months ago.” On race day, we tend to lose sight of the hours spent in training. While you’re getting dressed or warming up, visualize your larger body of work and the progress you’ve made—the actual event is just a small part of that.

You can also utilize technology, like your morning alarm, to engage in positive self-talk. I label my phone alarm for a morning long run with a motivational mini message that helps me start my day. The more you do this, the more natural it will become to believe these positive affirmations.

→ Reframe your thoughts

Let’s say you ran a “bad” race, but friends and family were cheering you on from the sidelines. Instead of dwelling on your results, try shifting your thinking to: “These people saw me push myself, and they couldn’t care less about my time.” I have a 1-year-old and a wife, and anytime I don’t reach the time I wanted, I think about how I have their support and that they’re cheering for me no matter what.

→ See a sports psychologist

If you find you can’t stop the cycle of self-criticism, you risk falling out of love with running—and yourself. Learning to grow a sense of joy not only will help you show up to your training runs, it can strip away the negative competitiveness and restore the fun that initially drew you to running.

Additionally, being overly self-critical can hurt your relationship with your running community. If you’re injured, you may look in a negative light at people who are running healthy. Or you might begin to resent those who reached a race goal when you didn’t. You can burn yourself out when you direct your energy toward running against people as opposed to with them.

When your running partners or coach aren’t enough to help you break these patterns and pick yourself back up, a sports psychologist can provide impartial feedback, with specific attention to your emotional and mental well-being, in ways someone who is close to you and your training might not be able to.

Practicing positive self-talk will help you become your own best teammate and put you on the path to being kind to yourself—and becoming a better runner along the way.

(09/05/2021) ⚡AMP

Courtney Dauwalter Smashed the Women’s Record at UTMB and Knocked Over 2 Hours Off Her Previous Best

In her second appearance at the French race, she knocked over two hours off her previous best and placed 7th overall.

Courtney Dauwalter returned to the 106-mile Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB) to defend her 2019 crown and did not disappoint in her second appearance in Chamonix, France.

The 36-year-old from Golden, Colorado, led wire to wire in the women’s race, running into only a few minor issues along the way to set a new course record in 22:30:54 and finish seventh overall.

“It was an incredible experience again, and we were so excited to be back, immersed in that community,” Dauwalter told Runner’s World. “I didn’t know what to expect from the race, but I knew that I was lining up healthy and physically and mentally as ready as I could be.”

UTMB was a redemption race for Dauwalter, who was forced to drop out at mile 62 of the Hardrock 100 in July because of stomach issues.

Since then, Dauwalter said she has been tweaking her fueling strategy with her husband and crew chief, Kevin Schmidt. With solid foods causing issues at a certain point, she found that she should take in liquids only.

What happened at Hardrock turned out to be a blessing for her second time through the Alps. Similar problems arose around mile 50 at the Courmayeur aid station. Dauwalter was well ahead with only Mimmi Kotka of Sweden near her, but solid food wasn’t going down. Though she initially planned to switch to liquids only at mile 70, she and Schmidt opted to make the change earlier.

This meant Dauwalter relied on drinking a lot at aid stations and only fueling with the single liter she carried with her between aid stations.

“Climbing out of Courmayeur and coming to the top, I lost my lunch a little bit,” Dauwalter said. “But once it happened, it never happened again and I felt fine. I don’t know if my body was rejecting the fluids I put into it, but it ended up not being a big deal.”

Dauwalter then opened up a massive lead in the women’s race, picking off male competitors one by one. She said there were still low points in the latter part of the race—her legs felt shredded with each climb—but in those moments, she turned to her old friend, the iPod Shuffle.

“It literally has just the play button,” Dauwalter said. “It’s the best. Helps occupy my brain space with upbeat music. It basically has a playlist that started in 2010 and has just been added to since. So an eclectic mix of country music, Michael Jackson, Prince, some early 2010s pop and rap, and Taylor Swift.”

Dauwalter led the women’s race by over an hour as she made the final climb out of Vallorcine at mile 93 and descended back into Chamonix. Dauwalter found herself overjoyed upon seeing the mass of spectators welcoming her back into town.

As she ran through the streets and across the line, Dauwalter said she had no idea her time of 22:30:54 had set a new course record. Her time bested fellow American Rory Bosio, who set the previous record in 2013 (22:37:26) on a course that was three kilometers shorter.

“I feel very happy to have made the entire loop,” Dauwalter said. “After DNFing Hardrock, I wanted to finish UTMB no matter what it took. I’m grateful to my legs, my body, and Kevin and I were able to make the whole 100-mile adventure together. It’ll make for another great memory.”

Not only did Dauwalter make history with her time, she also finished seventh overall in the race. The rest of the women’s podium rounded out with French runner Camille Bruyas taking second (24:09:42) and Kotkas taking third (25:08:29). You can find the full results here.

“It’s a very cool time in the sport,” Dauwalter said. “There’s a lot of women pushing the limits and seeing what is possible. I feel lucky to be in this sport right now and sharing miles with those women and sharing races with these women.”

Dauwalter celebrated at the finish with Schmidt and her Salomon team. Having a beer was her top priority, so she grabbed a light beer that was handed to her. The next event on her race calendar is Big’s Backyard in October.

In the men’s race, French runners took the top five spots, led by now four-time champion Francois D’haene (2012, 2014, 2017, and 2021), who finished in 20:45:59.

American men continued their struggles at the event with Jim Walmsley and Tim Tollefson dropping out. The top American male was Luke Jay, who finished as the second American and 34th overall in 25:54:40. No American man has ever won UTMB.

(09/05/2021) ⚡AMP

Canada's Nate Riech sets Paralympic record and wins gold in 1,500m

Canada’s Nate Riech captured gold in the men’s 1,500m, running 3:58.92 to set the T38 Paralympic record, in his debut at the Games.

The Victoria, B.C., native pulled away from the field with two-and-a half laps to go, finishing ahead of Algeria’s Abdelkrim Krai by four seconds. Deon Kenzie of Australia was third in 4:03.76. It was a dominant performance by Riech, who adds the title of Paralympic champion to his resume.

Earlier this year, Riech set the world record in the 1,500m event of 3:47.89 at a meet in Victoria.

Fellow Canadian Liam Stanley, a T37 athlete, competed in the race with a higher degree of impairment than the rest of the athletes of the T38 classification.

Stanley finished fifth in 4:06.95, setting a Paralympic record for the T37 classification.

(09/05/2021) ⚡AMP

Exercisers and elites mingled at Tjejmilen

Finally, Tjejmilen could be completed. In honor of the day, we had perfect running weather with sun and around 14 degrees. Extra fun was that Finnkampen's 10,000 meters for women was decided during Tjejmilen.

After having to cancel last year's race due to covid-19, about 8000 girls who wanted to run were registered for this year's Tjejmilen. The classic setting with thousands of girls on site at the same time at Gärdet was different this year due to the restrictions where a maximum of 900 participants can be in the event area at the same time.

First out was Lilla Tjejmilen starting at 9.30 - almost 400 girls were registered.

At 10.00 it was time for the premiere of Tjejmilen Trail. More than 800 girls were registered for the race, which took place on small winding paths in the forest around Kaknästornet.

At 12.00, the starting shot was fired for Tjejmilen. At the front of the starting field were the six participants from Finnkampen with Meraf Bahta, Sarah Lahti and Carolina Wikström in the Swedish team. Bahta and Lahti together with Hanna Lindholm were first at a kilometer. After three kilometers, Bahta and Lahti pulled, they were then followed to the finish where Meraf Bahta came out of the sprint duel winning.

The race then continued with starts every 30 minutes, to avoid congestion. In a normal year, the different groups start at five-minute intervals. It was a long and wonderful day at Gärdet, at 18.25 the last runners finished.

We are incredibly happy that we have managed to arrange Tjejmilen this year with all adaptations to the restrictions that apply. We had to rethink, but I'm really happy with the result - and it was noticed that the participants on site appreciated being able to run races again. Next year we hope to be on the track again after the pandemic. It would of course be fun if we could approach the 2019 number of participants of 20,000 registered runners, says Malin Aho, project manager at the Marathon Group that arranges the Girl Mile.

In addition to the participants on site, many chose to run Tjejmilen virtually again this year.

Topp 5 Tjejmilen 20211. Meraf Bahta, Hälle IF, 32:412. Sarah Lahti, Hässelby SK, 32:423. Carolina Wikström, LK Roslagen, 33:284. Hanna Lindholm, Huddinge AIS, 33:375. Johanna Peiponen, Rovaniemen Lappi, 34:00Här finns alla resultat i Tjejmilen 2021.

Resultat Finnkampen, damernas 10 000 meter1. Meraf Bahta, Sverige/Hälle IF, 32:412. Sarah Lahti, Sverige/Hässelby SK, 32:423. Carolina Wikström, Sverige/LK Roslagen, 33:284. Johanna Peiponen, Finland/Rovaniemen Lappi, 34:005. Nina Chydenius, Finland/Gamlakarleby IF, 34:046. Laura Manninen, Finland/Kenttäurheilijat -58, 34:34

Topp 5 Tjejmilen Trail 20211. Helena Wallin, Älvsjö, 42:912. Olivia Grahn, Stockholm, 42:413. Rebecca Källström, Stockholm, 43:284. Sofia Kingstedt von Corswant, Skarpnäck, 43:475. Alicia Sjöö Ekelöf, Spånga, 44:02


(09/05/2021) ⚡AMP


The Tjejmilen 10K is Sweden’s largest sports event for women with around 30,000 participants taking part in a road race and in a trail race. The road race has a Fun Run version and a competitive version if you want to show your girl power. The course of Tjejmilen is predominantly flat with two small hills (less than 15 meters)...


Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon leaving Virginia Beach after this year

After 20 years of live music serenading runners through the Virginia Beach Oceanfront, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series is leaving the city.

The series, which debuted in Hampton Roads in 2001 and includes a half-marathon, 5-kilometer race and 1-mile sprint, will take place for the final time the weekend of Sept. 4, the event runners announced in a statement on its Facebook page.

“After thoughtful consideration and conversations with local officials, the difficult decision has been made that after 20 wonderful years, the 2021 Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series Virginia Beach will be the final edition of the race,” the statement read.

“...We have had a tremendous relationship with the City of Virginia Beach over the years and will continue to stay engaged with the city and all of our local partners to explore potential opportunities that may arise in the future.”

Virginia Beach is host to one of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s 17 events listed on its website, boasting it as “the largest outdoor music festival on the East Coast.”

The departure leaves the Yuengling Shamrock Marathon and Half Marathon in March as Virginia Beach’s sole premier running event.

(09/04/2021) ⚡AMP
by Ray Nimmo

Sprint stars Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Andre De Grasse will headline the Kamila Skolimowska Memorial in Poland

On Sunday 5, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting, while there will also be a wealth of champions in action in the field events, including a fond farewell to a legend of Polish athletics in Piotr Malachowski.

Fraser-Pryce will race her specialist event, the 100m, where she will face stiff opposition from compatriot Shericka Jackson. However, the two-time Olympic 100m champion should prove tough to beat, having clocked a PB of 10.60 in Lausanne last week.

De Grasse will line up in the 200m, the event in which he’s the Olympic champion, having clocked a Canadian record of 19.62 to take gold in Tokyo, which he backed up in fine style with a wind-assisted 9.74 (2.9m/s) to win over 100m at the Eugene Diamond League. Also in the field are Italy’s Filippo Tortu, Turkey’s Ramil Guliyev and Britons Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake and Reece Prescod.

Another Olympic champion will be in action in the men’s 110m hurdles, with Jamaica’s Hansle Parchment looking to back up that Tokyo win against a formidable US duo in Devon Allen and Daniel Roberts.

Brazil’s Alison Dos Santos, who took bronze in Tokyo in a South American record of 46.72, should prove tough to beat in the 400m hurdles. Fellow Olympic finalists Yasmani Copello of Turkey and Rasmus Magi of Estonia should be his closest pursuers.

US pair Michael Cherry and Vernon Norwood will be big contenders in the men’s 400m along with Botswana’s Isaac Makwala, while Poland’s Karol Zalewski, Kajetan Duszynski and Jakub Krzewina should mount a strong challenge on home turf.

The favourite for the women’s 400m is Marileidy Paulino of the Dominican Republic, who backed up her Olympic silver medal with recent wins in Lausanne (50.40) and Paris (50.12). Britain’s Jodie Williams will also be in the reckoning following her PB of 49.97 to finish sixth in the Olympic final, while the home charge is led by Justyna Swiety-Ersetic and Anna Kielbasinska, the latter in sparkling form following a PB of 50.38 in La Chaux-de-Fonds last month.

Nigeria’s Tobi Amusan, who clocked 12.60 to finish fourth in the Olympic final, should be tough to beat in the 100m hurdles, though US pair Sharika Nelvis and Christina Clemons will put it up to her along with Britain’s Cindy Sember.

The women’s 400m hurdles features a clash between the fourth-, fifth- and sixth-place finishers in the Olympic final: Janieve Russell of Jamaica along with Anna Ryzhykova and Viktoriya Tkachuk of Ukraine.

There will be a string of local heroes in action across the field events, with Olympic champion Wojciech Nowicki headlining the men’s hammer field, which also includes four-time world champion Pawel Fajdek and the man who split the Poles on the podium in Tokyo: Eivind Henriksen of Norway.

All eyes will be on Piotr Malachowski in the men’s discus as the 38-year-old performs in front of his home crowd for the last time before bringing the curtain down on a career that has included one world title, two world silver medals, two European golds and two Olympic silvers.

“Over 20 years of training, effort and sacrifice are now behind me,” said Malachowski. “It was a great time, full of joy. It is now times to say goodbye. I am retiring, bidding farewell to the fans, thanking them for the invaluable support they have given me over the years.”

Also in the field are Jamaica’s Fedrick Dacres, Slovenia’s Kristjan Ceh and Lithuania’s Andrius Gudzius.

Poland has a typically strong hand in the men’s pole vault where Piotr Lisek and Pawel Wojciechowski take on Olympic silver medallist Chris Nilsen and world champion Sam Kendricks.

The men’s shot put will be a must-see event, reuniting the top four finishers from the Tokyo Olympics: USA’s Ryan Crouser and Joe Kovacs along with New Zealand’s Tom Walsh and Brazil’s Darlan Romani.

Johannes Vetter is the star attraction in the men’s javelin, the German looking to put his Tokyo disappointment firmly behind him as he takes on Olympic silver medallist Jakub Vadlejch of the Czech Republic.

Italy’s Gianmarco Tamberi will take star billing in the men’s high jump where the Olympic champion takes on Olympic bronze medallist Maksim Nedasekau, while the women’s high jump features Ukraine’s Yaroslava Mahuchikh, Yuliya Levchenko and Iryna Herashchenko along with Poland’s Kamila Licwinko.

Poland’s Maria Andrejczyk will be a popular presence among fans, not only due to her Olympic silver in Tokyo but due to her decision to auction off that medal to raise money for a Polish toddler’s heart surgery. Polish convenience store Zabka won the auction and returned the medal to Andrejczyk, who said that she believes “the good we do comes back to us.” In Silesia she will take on world champion Kelsey-Lee Barber of Australia.

Poland’s Malwina Kopron will take on France’s Alexandra Tavernier in the women’s hammer, the woman she beat to the bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics, while fellow finalist Joanna Fiodorow is also in the field. Portugal’s Auriol Dongmo is the leading entrant in the women’s shot put.

Olympic 10,000m champion Selemon Barega of Ethiopia and 3000m steeplechase champion Soufiane El Bakkali of Morocco are the star attractions in the distance races, the two squaring off over 3000m in a field that includes rising star Tadese Worku of Ethiopia, the world U20 champion, and Abel Kipsang, who finished fourth in the Olympic 1500m final.

(09/04/2021) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics

The world's best finish lines

Whether you are running your first or 50th race, there is no better feeling than crossing the finish line. We appreciate all finish lines in life no matter your goals, but we take a look at some of our favourite finish lines in races across the running world.

Boston Marathon (U.S.)

It would be hard to leave the finish line of the prestigious Boston Marathon off the list. Right on Hereford, left on Bolyston and you can see the finish line, with 500m to go. It’s a memory Boston marathoners remember forever. To hear fans, family members and Bostonians screaming at you as you run toward the line certainly gives you a final push to the finish.

Ultra de Trail Mont-Blanc (France)

This UTMB finish line sits right in the heart of Chamonix, surrounded by picturesque views of the French Alps. Ultrarunners descend from the mountain into the village after 171 km of racing, and hear the roar of the crowd as they run through narrow cobblestone streets toward the finish.

Olympic Marathon (Various)

The Olympic marathons always take place on the final two days of athletic events at the Games. Although fans were not allowed in the stadium in Tokyo, there were people lining the marathon course in Sapporo, which was one of the advantages of it being moved to that city. The raw emotion of athletes celebrating as they complete the Olympic marathon is a moment like no other.

Around the Bay 30 km (Canada)

Canada’s Around the Bay 30 km road race has a unique finish line, in which runners finish go through the lower level of a hockey arena to finish at centre ice of Hamilton’s FirstOntario Centre. Friends and families sit inside the arena to watch runners cross the line. Spectators will also sit inside to avoid the freezing temperatures of the March race.

Melbourne Marathon (Australia)

Similar to Canada’s Around the Bay race, the Melbourne Marathon finishes inside one of the world’s top 10 largest stadiums: the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). The MCG has a seating capacity of 100,000 people and is home to the AFL Grand Final and Australia’s cricket team. Runners enter the MCG after completing 41 kilometres around the streets of Melbourne, to finish the marathon at midfield.

Great Wall Marathon (China)

The Great Wall of China Marathon starts and finishes inside the village of Huanyaguang’s Yin & Yang Square. Despite the steep climbs on the iconic Great Wall of China, runners are rewarded by the breathtaking views along the course. In the last two kilometres, as you reach the village from the wall, spectators will be cheering as they have a traditional festival for runners.

Comrades Ultra Marathon (South Africa)

The Comrades Marathon is a point-to-point 90 km ultramarathon in South Africa, starting at City Hall in Pietermaritzburg and finishing at the Sahara Kingsmead Cricket Stadium in Durban. Race spectators wait at the finish in Durban in front of a big screen, waiting for entrants to cross the line. The race has a challenging time limit, as runners must complete the distance in less than 12 hours.

(09/04/2021) ⚡AMP

What's the best alternative to running when you're injured?

Most runners will experience some form of injury at one point or another that prevents them from training, whether that be for a few days, weeks or even months. This, of course, can be very frustrating, and many will look for an alternative to running in order to maintain their fitness while they rehab their injury. There are plenty of options here to choose from, but which one is best? We’ve broken down some of the most common choices to help you pick the best option for you.


The great thing about cycling is that the fitness you gain on the bike can translate very well to running, and since it’s a non-weight-bearing activity, it’s a great option for injured runners. Cycling can also strengthen areas of the body where runners can sometimes be weak, like the quads, outer hips and glutes, which can help prevent other injuries in the future.

Cycling is also one of the most accessible options for injured runners, and those who aren’t comfortable out on the roads can opt to use a stationary bike inside if they have one. Most gyms have stationary bikes as well, so if you have a gym membership, now is a great time to use it. There are a few drawbacks to cycling, and depending on your injury, the bike could make it worse. There is also a learning curve when it comes to adapting your running workouts to the bike, and if you’re cycling indoors, the stationary bike can be pretty boring.


The elliptical is another good option for injured runners who have a gym membership, since not very many people have one in their homes. The best part about the elliptical is that it very closely mimics the motion of running, without the pounding associated with hitting the pavement. Like with the stationary bike, the drawback here is that it can be very monotonous. Some people prefer to use an assault bike, which can be less boring, but they aren’t as common in most gyms and so tend to be less accessible for the average runner.

Pool running

Pool running, or aqua jogging, allows you to run while removing the full effect of gravity. It’s a good option because it gives you the opportunity to work on your form and get your heart rate up with little to no impact on your joints. The biggest benefit to pool running is it is most similar to actual running in respect to your movement and biomechanics and you can replicate just about any type of running workout in the pool, from tempos to intervals to long runs. The downside, of course, is that it can be very boring, and you do need access to a pool in order to do it.


Most people find swimming more interesting than pool running, and it can be a very good full-body workout. The downside is that unless you’re already a proficient swimmer, it can be difficult to get a true aerobic workout from swimming. For this reason, it is better as a supplement to other types of cross-training.

The Alter-G treadmill

The Alter-G treadmill involves running on a treadmill while your entire lower body is encompassed in a chamber that allows you to reduce the amount of gravity (or pressure) on your body to take you from 100 per cent bodyweight down to as little as 20 per cent body weight. It’s great because it allows you to get back to running faster, while still protecting yourself from impact. Of course, just like running on a regular treadmill, the Alter-G can get very boring, but in this case the boredom will cost extra. One of these machines can cost anywhere from $35,000-$75,000, which makes them prohibitively expensive for most people. Most people will instead use one at sports medicine or rehab clinic, but they can be difficult to locate and will still set you back about $35 to $50 per session.

So which should you choose?

The type of cross-training you choose will depend on a number of factors, including the type and severity of your injury, what you have available to you and of course, your own preference. When it comes to cost, accessibility and efficacy, most runners will find cycling, the elliptical and pool running to be their best bet, but our list doesn’t include every running alternative out there, so make sure you talk to a physiotherapist or sports medicine practitioner before beginning a cross-training regime, as they’ll be able to guide you to which option is best for your specific injury.

(09/04/2021) ⚡AMP

CAS report on Shelby Houlihan explains reasons for four-year ban

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

(09/04/2021) ⚡AMP

Duplantis, Hassan and Cherry break meeting records in Brussels

Meeting records are hard to come by in the Wanda Diamond League, given it’s the premier one-day meeting circuit in the world, but three such marks fell at the Memorial Van Damme in Brussels on Friday (3), thanks to Mondo Duplantis, Sifan Hassan and Michael Cherry.

When the men’s pole vault got underway, some 40 minutes before the first track event, the King Baudouin Stadium was still filling up. By the time the contest reached its climax three hours later, with all other disciplines having long finished, Duplantis commanded the attention of every single person inside the venue.

Though the world record once again evaded Duplantis tonight, the 28,000 spectators – the largest gathering for an athletics meeting since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic – were treated to a vaulting masterclass from a legend of the sport.

The Olympic champion opened at 5.50m, skipped 5.65m and then got over 5.75m and 5.85m on his first tries. Four other men were left in the competition at this point, but only two of them got over 5.85m; Olympic silver medallist Christopher Nilsen did it on his first try, while US compatriot KC Lightfoot scraped over on his third attempt.

The US duo couldn’t quite manage 5.91m tonight, though, but Duplantis once again went clear at the first time of asking to confirm his victory. The 21-year-old Swede then raised the bar to 6.05m in a bid to add some height to his own 6.00m meeting record from last year. He brought the bar down with his first two tries, but got over it on his third attempt.

The bar was then raised to the would-be world record height of 6.19m. Following a short wait while the technical officials ensured all was set for a record attempt, Duplantis took to the runway but wasn’t particularly close to clearing the bar on his first attempt. His second try was significantly closer, and his third attempt was also decent, but a world record wasn’t to be tonight.

Nevertheless, Duplantis wasn’t disappointed with his winning height of 6.05m. Only he, Sergey Bubka and two-time world champion Sam Kendricks have ever vaulted higher outdoors.

"I was really close to the world record," said Duplantis. "Everything was perfect, it was just up to me. I haven't had such an amazing atmosphere during a competition in a really long time."

Almost a month has passed since Sifan Hassan’s final race at the Olympic Games, where she won two gold medals and one bronze. Having raced just once during that time, the Dutch distance star arrived in Brussels well rested and ready to take on the mile.

She was the only athlete capable of sticking with the pacemakers as they led through the first 400m in 1:02.03. By the time the second pacemaker reached the 800m point in 2:04.97, with Hassan still in close attendance, the rest of the field was about 30 metres adrift.

With a lap to go, it was clear from the wavelight technology that an improvement on Hassan’s 4:12.33 world record was not on the cards in Brussels, though it never really seemed as though that was her ambition for the race anyway. By this stage, her lead had grown to 50 metres and she kicked for the final lap, going on to win by more than six seconds.

Her winning time of 4:14.74, the fifth-fastest performance in history, smashed Faith Kipyegon’s meeting record by two seconds. Ethiopia’s Axumawit Embaye was second in 4:21.08, closely followed by Australia’s Linden Hall, who broke her own Oceanian record with 4:21.38.

“Since the start of the pandemic, we haven’t had such a big crowd and I’m so happy to see them,” said Hassan. “We haven’t experienced it for nearly two years; it makes you feel special. It’s amazing, I really love it.”

In Tokyo last month, Michael Cherry was beaten to the 400m bronze medal by just 0.02 as Kirani James pipped the US sprinter at the line. Today’s race in Brussels was the first clash between the pair since the Olympic final, and Cherry ran like a man with a point to prove.

He went out hard, as did James, and by half way the duo had started to open up a clear gap on the likes of Isaac Makwala and Liemarvin Bonevacia.

James almost drew level with Cherry on the final bend, but Cherry had another gear left and forged ahead down the home straight, crossing the line in a lifetime best of 44.03 to take 0.03 off Michael Johnson’s meeting record from 1998.

James finished second in 44.51 with Makwala taking third place in 44.83.

The meeting record may have remained intact in the women’s high jump, but it proved to be one of the most enthralling contests of the night.

Olympic champion Mariya Lasitskene breezed through the first few heights and hadn’t recorded any failures up to and including 1.98m. World silver medallist Yaroslava Mahuchikh, who needed three attempts to clear 1.95m, also got over 1.98m on her first try, while Olympic silver medallist Nicola McDermott needed two jumps to clear it.

But McDermott was then the first to go clear at 2.00m, getting over on her first try, then Lasitskene did likewise. Mahuchikh succeeded on her second attempt at 2.00m, but then nailed 2.02m on her first attempt, taking the lead at a critical point of the competition.

Lasitskene missed once and then passed to 2.04m, while McDermott had two misses at 2.02m before registering a third failure at 2.04m. Neither of the trio managed to get over 2.04m, leaving Mahuchikh as the winner. It was just the second time in Diamond League history that three women have cleared 2.00m in the same competition.

With Lasitskene having won in Lausanne and McDermott winning in Paris, Mahuchikh’s triumph in Brussels means all three Olympic medallists have achieved Diamond League wins since the Tokyo Games.

Kerley makes Diamond League history

Olympic 100m silver medallist Fred Kerley won the short sprint, becoming the first man to win over 100m, 200m and 400m in the Wanda Diamond League.

World leader Trayvon Bromell blasted into an early lead and held his form well, but Kerley rallied and held off the additional challenge from Michael Norman in lane seven, dipping well on the line to take the victory in 9.94.

Bromell held on to take second place in 9.97, just 0.01 ahead of Michael Norman (9.98), completing a US sweep of the top three places.

Christine Mboma, also an Olympic silver medallist, won the women’s 200m. The Namibian teenager came through strongly in the closing stages to edge in front of Jamaica’s Shericka Jackson and world champion Dina Asher-Smith.

Mboma stopped the clock at 21.84 while Jackson took second place in 21.95. Asher-Smith recorded a season’s best of 22.04 in third, and US 100m champion Sha’Carri Richardson was a few strides adrift in fourth place (22.45).

Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba produced a similarly well-timed finish to win the 5000m.

Once the last of the pacemakers dropped out at 2000m, Niyonsaba took up the running at the front of the pack with two-time world champion Hellen Obiri close behind. The Kenyan led for a brief stint too, passing through 3000m in a swift 8:42.57.

Niyonsaba, who finished fifth over 10,000m at the Tokyo Olympics, led again for most of the final kilometre, but Obiri kicked into the lead when the bell sounded for the final lap. She appeared to be on her way to victory, but Ethiopia’s Ejgayehu Taye came back strongly and briefly led with about 90 metres to go, then a rejuvenated Niyonsaba came back to take the lead in the closing stages, crossing the line in a national record of 14:25.34.

Taye took second place in 14:25.63 with Obiri claiming third in 14:26.23. World silver medallist Margaret Chelimo Kipkemboi set a PB of 14:27.12 in fourth as the top seven women finished inside 14:32 – unprecedented depth for a 5000m race.

Goule, Rotich and McSweyn take middle distances

Exactly one month since her eighth-place finish at the Tokyo Olympics, Jamaica’s Natoya Goule rebounded with a satisfying win over 800m, beating several women who finished ahead of her at the Games.

With the pacemaker passing through the first lap in 56.99, the field was still relatively tightly bunched with 300 metres to go. Goule held the lead, but Olympic silver medallist Keely Hodgkinson moved on to the Jamaican’s shoulder on the final bend and looked poised to strike.

Goule had saved something for the finish, though, and she held off the challenge from the British teenager, winning in 1:58.09. Hodgkinson was second in 1:58.16 from compatriot Jemma Reekie (1:58.77).

Stewart McSweyn led an Australian 1-2 in the men’s 1500m. The Oceanian record-holder overtook a fading Mohamed Katir on the home straight to win in 3:33.20 with compatriot Oliver Hoare taking second place (3:33.79). Poland’s Michal Rozmys was third in 3:33.96.

Olympic silver medallist Ferguson Cheruiyot Rotich was a comfortable winner of the non-scoring men’s 800m, crossing the line in 1:43.81 to win by more than a second from Belgium’s Eliott Crestan (1:45.24).

Hurdles victories for Dos Santos and Visser

Racing for the first time since taking Olympic bronze and moving to third on the world all-time list, Brazil’s Alison dos Santos won the men’s 400m hurdles with his trademark strong finish.

Kyron McMaster of the British Virgin Islands led for most of the race, making up the stagger on Dos Santos, drawn one lane outside him, by the half-way point. Dos Santos stuck with McMaster around the final bend and drew level with Jamaica’s Jaheel Hyde. McMaster hit the penultimate hurdle, throwing off his rhythm slightly as he went into the final barrier. Dos Santos, meanwhile, came off the 10th hurdle much better and went on to win in 48.23.

McMaster finished second in 48.31 and Yasmani Copello took third place in 48.45.

The closest finish of the day came in the women’s 100m hurdles, in which Nadine Visser won by just eight thousandths of a second from Tobi Amusan, both timed at 12.69 (0.7m/s). Olympic bronze medallist Megan Tapper was third in 12.77.

Elsewhere, Steffin McCarter saved his best for last to win the men’s long jump. His sixth-round leap of 7.99m was not only the best in the ‘final three’ contest; it was also the top mark of the entire competition. Ruswahl Samaai was second thanks to his last-round leap of 7.89m, having jumped 7.95m earlier in the competition.

(09/04/2021) ⚡AMP

How much time do carbon shoes really take off?

Professor of biomechanics at BYU gives his perspective on the benefits of carbon-plated shoes.

Since Nike launched the original carbon-plated Nike Vaporfly, there has been a transition to the type of shoe runners are wearing. When the Vaporfly was released, it changed the game with a non-traditional look. Instead of being as lightweight as possible, the brands designed a bulkier shoe with lightweight foam plus a carbon plate to provide stiffness. When Eliud Kipchoge ran under 2:01 for Nike’s Breaking2 project, the carbon craze began.

Many runners saw the way the shoe benefited the world’s best marathoner and thought, “I wonder how fast a carbon shoe would make me?” 

Easton Allred, a cross-country runner with Brigham Young University, discussed the recent development of carbon shoes with professor of biomechanics Dr. Iain Hunter, who studies how people can run faster by the way they move, and the effect of footwear on their athletic performance. The two discuss whether carbon is beneficial and how much time it could take off your 5 km. 

Dr. Hunter notes that half the hype around carbon-plated shoes is psychological, and most runners won’t see a benefit from the plate itself. “A common misconception is that it acts as a spring – the plate is actually in the shoe to hold the foam together,” Hunter said. Each carbon shoe is very individualized and based on many variables. For example, if you are a heel striker, the plate/foam will not generate as much responsiveness for a forefoot striker. “I am convinced that the shoes help with performance, but I doubt it’s as big an effect as a lot of people think,” Hunter adds.

Allred asks, “How much of a difference do you think it would make in a 5 K race?” 

“Maybe two or three seconds per kilometre,” Hunter states. “A couple of seconds could be very meaningful to some runners, but there isn’t more than that.” The technology of racing flats before carbon shoes wasn’t far behind, and runners were still breaking world records in flats.

“We have done studies that there are extreme benefits to recovery with carbon shoes, since the foam is softer than racing flats,” Hunter states

With the book out on the benefits of carbon shoes, all brands have adapted to the same technology. The only difference between models would be the softness of the foam and the stiffness of the plate. 

(09/03/2021) ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson

Gelete Burka and Fabienne Schlumpf will head the women’s field of the Vienna City Marathon

With a personal best of 2:20:45 Ethiopia’s Gelete Burka will be the fastest woman ever on a start list for Austria’s most prestigious and biggest road running event.

The Vienna City Marathon will see its 38th edition next week and organizers currently have registered a total of around 25,000 athletes. While this includes races at shorter distances there will be 6,000 marathon runners. Some of the events will take place on the Saturday.

The Vienna City Marathon is a World Athletics Marathon Label Road Race and will be the first major international marathon featuring a strong elite field and a mass race since the start of the Corona pandemic. After providing a hygiene concept organizers received the final go ahead from the city a couple of days ago.

Gelete Burka has been a very successful track and cross country runner. The Ethiopian took the World Cross Country Championships’ gold medal in 2006 (short course) and won the 1,500 m final at the World Indoor Championships two years later. In 2015 she was second in the 10,000 m final of the World Championships. By that time she already had a few attempts at the marathon distance. However despite a personal best of 2:26:03 from 2014 in Houston she did not manage to transform her great potential to the classic distance. It was then in Dubai 2018 when she returned to the marathon after a four-year break and achieved a breakthrough performance: Gelete Burka improved to 2:20:45 in the Emirate.

There was more success in the marathon for Gelete Burka after her sixth place in Dubai: In May that year she won the Ottawa race in 2:22:17, then she took the Paris Marathon in 2019 with 2:22:47. A third place in the Chicago Marathon (2:20:55) followed later in the year. The Vienna City Marathon will now be the first marathon for the 35 year-old since 2019.

In contrast Fabienne Schlumpf is still a newcomer to the marathon. The former steeplechaser, who took the silver medal at the European Championships in 2018, first ran a series of national records in the half marathon. Last autumn she achieved a very respectable 13th place in the World Half Marathon Championships with an improvement to 68:38. She then took the Dresden Half Marathon this March with 68:27. Easily breaking the Olympic qualifying standard she clocked 2:26:14 in her marathon debut in Bern in April when she took second place. Fabienne Schlumpf then ran her second marathon at the Olympics in the extremely tough conditions in Sapporo. She achieved a superb 12th place in 2:31:36 which suggests that there is much more to come from the 30 year-old in the marathon. “I had already planned to run Vienna after the Olympics for a long time,” said Fabienne Schlumpf.

Gelete Burka and Fabienne Schlumpf will face a group of strong Kenyan contenders at the Vienna City Marathon. Risper Chebet is the second fastest on the start list with a personal best of 2:23:45. She achieved this time when she was fifth in Milan earlier this year, improving her PB by almost four minutes. Returning to the Vienna City Marathon will be Rebecca Kangogo and Celestine Chepchirchir. Kangogo ran her personal record of 2:24:25 here when she was runner-up in 2017 while Chepchirchir was third in 2018. She has a personal best of 2:24:48 from Seoul in 2019.

(09/03/2021) ⚡AMP
Vienna City Marathon

Vienna City Marathon

More than 41,000 runners from over 110 nations take part in the Vienna City Marathon, cheered on by hundreds of thousands of spectators. From the start at UN City to the magnificent finish on the Heldenplatz, the excitement will never miss a beat. In recent years the Vienna City Marathon has succeeded in creating a unique position as a marathon...


Craft Sportswear Becomes Official Athletic Footwear Partner of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series

The Rock ‘n’ Roll® Running Series and Craft Sportswear are excited to announce a new partnership making Craft Sportswear the Official Athletic Footwear Partner for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series.

This partnership launches the co-branded Craft x Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series shoe in three limited-edition colorways – black, red and yellow. This exclusive mid-distance running, and training shoe will be available on the official Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series merchandise e-commerce store at and at all 2021 Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series events. 

“We are thrilled to have Craft Sportswear join us as the Official Athletic Footwear Partner of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series,” said Matt Wikstrom, Senior Vice President, Global Partnerships for The IRONMAN Group. “The launch of this new co-branded running shoe is a great opportunity for our runners to experience the high-performance and quality of Craft with the spirit and energy of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series.”

Craft is a high-quality and high-performance Swedish brand that provides world champions and everyday heroes an endurance focused footwear and apparel design for any distance and any terrain.

As part of the X-series, the Craft x Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series collaboration features a multi-purpose running shoe that truly follows the natural contours of the foot.

This Craft design features a lightweight and breathable engineered mesh upper and an ARC Foam midsole with launch pad at the forefoot and landing pad at the heel that provides excellent cushioning and response.

In addition, innovative X cables run under the midfoot and behind the heel to secure and stabilize the foot — offering a perfect balance between support and flexibility for a natural stride. “The running community here in the U.S. has exploded over the past two years and we are thrilled to be aligned with the Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series one of the premier race organizations here in the US.” said Eric Schenker, CEO of Craft NA.

“Through this partnership we look forward to providing Rock ‘n’ Roll and their participants innovative products and programs that will help elevate their racer’s experience and meet all their endurance needs.” To kick off the partnership, the Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll® Virtual Running Club is launching three Craft inspired virtual challenges designed to get runners to Lace Up, Step Up and Power Up.

Offering three distances, these challenges are the perfect way to try out the new Craft x Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series running shoe and learn more about each limited-edition colorway. By participating in any, or all, of these multi-level challenges participants can earn points towards discounts at the online or in-person Rock ‘n’ Roll merchandise stores and be entered to win a $500 Craft gift card. Visit to sign up and complete the challenges between Tuesday, August 31 and Friday September 10, 2021.

(09/03/2021) ⚡AMP
by Running USA
Rock N Roll Arizona Marathon

Rock N Roll Arizona Marathon

The Marathon and Half-Marathon courses or the new Mini- Marathon or Bike Tour courses take you through the three host cities of Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe! The Marathon and Bike Tour start at CityScape in downtown Phoenix, while the Half-Marathon and Mini-Marathon are loop courses launching from downtown Tempe. All the courses end in Tempe at ASU’s Sun Devil and...


Boston Marathon runners must be vaccinated or have a negative COVID-19 test

Runners in this year's Boston Marathon will need to provide proof of vaccination or produce a negative COVID-19 test in order to participate, race organisers said on Thursday.

The Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) said in a statement that all participants will be required to take either step prior to bib number pick-up ahead of the Oct. 11 race.

The B.A.A. said it was working with a third-party testing provider to conduct tests no earlier than 72 hours before participant start times.

Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 will not be allowed to take part and will be refunded their entry.

Masks will not be required for runners during the race but the B.A.A. said they will be enforced on race-day buses and in other areas in accordance with local guidelines.

Organisers previously said this year's Boston Marathon will be limited to 20,000 entrants, or about 33% below the typical number of runners in the race, in a bid to allow greater social distancing throughout the course given the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Boston Marathon, which is usually held in April and generally draws over 30,000 runners from all over the world, had been held annually since 1897 until it was cancelled for the first time last year because of COVID-19.

The global pandemic also forced organizers to push back the date for this year's race.

(09/03/2021) ⚡AMP
by Ed Osmond
Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...


Sifan Hassan will headline classy Brussels Diamond League field

Dutch all-rounder Sifan Hassan, who won two golds and a bronze in an unprecedented effort at a distance treble at the Tokyo Olympics, heads up a talent-loaded field at the penultimate meeting of the 2021 Diamond League series in Brussels on Friday.

In the last event before the two-day Diamond League finals in Zurich on September 8-9, the men's 100m featuring Tokyo silver medallist Fred Kerley of the US will also be a highlight.

Kerley will be up against compatriots Trayvon Bromell, Michael Norman and Ronnie Baker, along with Canada's Olympic 200m champion Andre De Grasse.

Kerley, fresh from a personal best of 19.79sec in the 200m in Paris last week, said: "I've got a lot of confidence in my current form and want to show what I've got in the upcoming weeks.

"My goal is very clear: I want to be the fastest man in the 100m, 200m and the 400m."

Kerley joined an exclusive club this year of sprinters who have broken 10 seconds in the 100m, 20 seconds in the 200m and 44 seconds in the 400m. Only Norman and South African Wayde van Niekerk have also achieved the feat.

"I want to be the best at all three distances. What makes someone the best, maybe a world record? I know I have got the potential to break the 400m record.

"I want to be a legend, like Usain Bolt. I see him as a big brother. To me he will always have a spot on the podium of the greatest of all time, he is a big example."

Hassan will race the mile at the King Baudouin Stadium, a venue she knows well, having broken the one-hour world record there last year.

The Ethiopian-born Dutch runner is also the world record holder in the mile and, given her sparkling form, it would take a brave person to bet against her winning once again.

The women's 200m is packed full of quality, with Tokyo bronze medallist Shericka Jackson, Olympic finalist Marie-Josee Ta Lou and a handful of sprinters who have a point to prove after Olympic disappointment this summer.

Outspoken American Sha'Carri Richardson missed out on a trip to Tokyo after being handed a one-month ban after testing positive for cannabis while Britain's Dina Asher-Smith was forced to pull out through injury.

Christine Mboma, the 18-year-old Namibian who is barred from running events between 400m and the mile because of her high testosterone levels, won a surprise silver in the 200m in Tokyo and will likely be a strong contender in Brussels.

Having rebounded from a disappointing outing at Lausanne with an emphatic win in Paris, Olympic pole vault champion Armand "Mondo" Duplantis is likely to again attempt to better his own world record of 6.18m.

(09/02/2021) ⚡AMP

Side Stitches While Running, Why Do You Get Them and What You Can Do To Avoid Them?

It’s something endurance athletes are particularly prone to – stitches. That unpleasant pain beneath the ribs has brought many an athlete to their knees, making for a sorry end to their race or match. But what exactly is a stitch, what causes a side stitch, is there anything that can help when you get it, and can anything be done to prevent it? pjuractive takes a closer look.


When people talk of side stitch, they are referring to a stabbing pain beneath the ribs which athletes suffer from, either on the left-hand side near the spleen or on the right around the liver area. It usually starts off fairly mildly, but can become so severe that athletes have to stop what they are doing. It mostly affects endurance athletes, such as runners, cyclists, swimmers, and rowers.


A stitch is brought on by physical exertion. It is something a lot of endurance athletes suffer with from time to time, yet the exact cause is still not known. There are plenty of theories about why so many athletes repeatedly suffer from the pain associated with stitches. One suspected cause is reduced blood supply to the organs, such as the spleen or liver. Incorrect breathing, a bent or stooping posture, overstimulation of the intercostal nerves, and an awkward running style can also bring on a side stitch. In addition, it is also assumed that incorrect food consumption and fluid intake can play a role – exercising on a full stomach may in fact be the crucial factor. The blood which the body needs for digestion means that there may not be enough available to the muscles, which can lead to a stitch. Being overweight, a lack of oxygen when doing intensive training, weak core muscles, and even failure to do sufficient warm-up exercises may also be causes.

The vast number of possible causes explains why so many athletes suffer from stitches so often. But can they be prevented? And if so, how?


Athletes naturally want to prevent stitches in the first place, yet because it is not clear what actually causes side stitch, it is difficult to prevent them. However, there are a few tips which athletes should bear in mind.

Endurance athletes should start their training gradually and slowly increase the intensity. It is only by doing this that the body can adjust the blood supply accordingly. It is also important to be aware of your breathing. Whatever the sport, breathing should always be controlled and abdominal breathing techniques should also be used. When running, for example, athletes are advised to breathe in for two to four paces and out again for exactly the same length of time. The faster the tempo, the fewer steps you take for each breath. When running slowly, take three to four – i.e. more steps per breath. It is also important to warm up properly to prepare the body for the exertion to come. This can prevent stitches, too.

Consumption of food should also be planned in a way that minimizes the risk of getting a stitch. It is recommended that athletes leave at least three hours after a big meal before a training session. Small snacks that are easy to digest are of course fine to eat before training.

Building up strong core muscles can also help prevent stitches in endurance athletes, as poor posture can cause side stitch. Stomach muscles are also important here.

It seems that older people don’t need to worry so much about preventing stitches, as susceptibility appears to decrease with age.


Have you followed all the tips above, yet still you’ve ended up with a stitch while running, cycling, etc.? There are a few things you can do when this happens:

No matter what the situation, slow down. Whether it’s your cycling speed or your running tempo – to prevent a stitch from getting even worse, first of all it’s important to scale down the intensity of your training a little.

If you are suffering from a side stitch, your breathing must be controlled. Correct breathing helps the diaphragm and the respiratory muscles to relax – you should take really deep breaths and then breathe out very slowly. This can help improve your depth of breathing and allows the muscles to recover.

It can also help to press your hand against the painful area, but only when you breathe in. Release the pressure from your hand again on the out-breath.

‎If it gets so bad that you have to take a break from your training, you can do light upper-body stretches. The best thing to do is to bend your upper body to the side. Each time you breathe out, you can then stretch your upper body a little further.

It can also help to stand still, control your breathing, and lean your upper body forward. This will relax your abdominal cavity and your diaphragm. 

Even though we haven’t been able to find out what exactly causes side stitches when running, cycling and the like, there are ways how to prevent side stitch. And if all that doesn’t help and you still get this unpleasant pain, it’s worth following our tips above. Happy endurance training – despite the stitch!

(09/02/2021) ⚡AMP
by Pjur Active

CAS report on Shelby Houlihan, close to zero probability burrito led her failed drugs test

The probability that a contaminated pork burrito led to the US Olympic 1500m medal prospect Shelby Houlihan’s failed drugs test is “very close to zero”, the court of arbitration for sport has ruled.

In a 44-page verdict, which outlined the reasons why Houlihan was banned for four years in June, Cas said her claim she had unwittingly ingested the banned substance nandrolone by eating the meat of an uncastrated boar from a Mexican food truck “simply cannot be accepted”.

Houlihan told the court that she had only eaten three quarters of her beef burrito, having found it “uncharacteristically greasy”, and said she may have been given a pork one by accident.

Cas dismissed Houlihan’s claims, saying: “The explanation presupposes a cascade of factual and scientific improbabilities, which means that its composite probability is (very) close to zero.

“First, the athlete would have had to have been served pork at the food truck despite ordering beef. Second, the pork consumed would not have been ‘normal’ pork product ordered by the food truck, but uncastrated boar. Third, uncastrated boar enters the food chain through completely different channels than pork.

“It is rather difficult for an uncastrated pig to ‘slip through’ the multiple checkpoints. In principle, boars can be easily detected because of their big testicles.”

Cas quoted experts who said that for an uncastrated boar to end up in the normal pork supply chain, it not only had to be cryptorchid – a specimen with undescended testicles – but have had elevated androgen levels, “which would be abnormal for 6-month-old pigs”.

The court said: “The concentration of nandrolone in the athlete’s urine was 2-3 times higher than the highest values reported in the scientific literature after the ingestion of much more significant quantities of meat of mature (uncastrated) boar.

“Finally, in his expert witness report, Prof McGlone states that the chance of a cryptorchid ending up in the normal supply chain in the United States is far less than 1 in 10,000. As a result of her failure to establish the origin of the nandrolone in her system, the athlete cannot benefit from a plea of no significant fault or negligence.”

Houlihan, who finished fourth in the 1500m at the world championships in Doha in 2019, had a lengthy array of witnesses who pointed to her good character. She also told Cas she had refused to wear carbon-plated “super spikes” in Doha as she thought they would give her an unfair advantage – a decision that may have cost her a medal.

Speaking in June, Houlihan said: “I did everything I could to prove my innocence. I passed a polygraph test. I had my hair sampled by one of the world’s foremost toxicologists.”

However, Cas said that “neither the hair analysis nor the polygraph results are sufficient for the athlete to rebut the presumption that the anti-doping rule violation was intentional”.

(09/02/2021) ⚡AMP
by Sean Ingle

World record-holder Eliud Kipchoge says that he wants to try an ultramarathon

As we’ve watched Eliud Kipchoge win race after race, break records and defy human limits, many fans have likely wondered what the marathon legend could do in a race longer than 42K. The great news is, one day we may have a chance to find out.

In a recent interview with Rob Steger in the Training for Ultra Podcast, the marathon world record-holder revealed his next goal after he finishes his marathon career: to tackle an ultra.

“After leaving the marathon, I want to run the ultramarathons just to feel how it is,” he told Steger. “Running for more than four or five days, or even run at once for 70 kilometers. I really want to feel the pain of running for a long time.”

While he hasn’t narrowed down any specific races he’d like to do, Kipchoge expressed interest in many of the Ultras in North America and South Africa, which gives him a long list to choose from. The ultrarunning community appears to be prepared to welcome the Olympic gold medalist with open arms, including fellow running legend, Spanish mountain runner Kilian Jornet.

Throughout the rest of the interview, Kipchoge talks about the pain of training (yes, running hurts for him, too… don’t let his smile fool you), who inspires him (hint: it’s not who you might think), how he motivates himself on days when he doesn’t feel like training and what kind of legacy he hopes to leave behind. The interview is short but not lacking any of Kipchoge’s endearing charm, and will likely have you itching to tie up your shoes by the end.

We may have to wait a while before we see Kipchoge out on the trails, however. To the delight, and perhaps the relief, of running fans everywhere, the GOAT of marathon running hasn’t made any indication that he’s retiring any time soon, and we will still have the pleasure of watching him make history for at least a few years yet.

(09/02/2021) ⚡AMP
by Brittany Hambleton
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