Thursday, October 30, 2008

Nike Hood to Coast- "The Mother of All Relays"

Registration for the 28th annual Hood to Coast Relay opened October 15- organizers received over 1,000 applications so are already in the process of setting up a lottery.

A summary of the event-
197 miles
12,000 runners
28th Annual Year
3,500 volunteers
August 28-29, 2009
Largest Running Relay in the World!
Fundraise for Charity of Choice: American Cancer Society
Near the top of Oregon's majestic Mt. Hood to beautiful Pacific Ocean in Seaside
Course record: 15 hr 44 min- Nike Mambu, 1995
2008 Winner: 16 hr 58 min- Bowerman Ac (5:10 per mile!)

Race founder, Bob Foote, needed a new challenge. As a 35 time marathoner and 13 time ultra-marathon runner, Bob, as well as many of his running friends were looking to test themselves in a fresh new challenge. That's when Bob's creative mind starting churning and came up with the idea of running from nearby Mount Hood, the backdrop for the city of Portland in which he lived, to another of his favorite weekend get-aways...the beach! A group of Bob's running friends and competitors would form relay teams, handing off every 5 miles, starting at Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood and finishing in the quaint coastal town of Pacific City. As a dedicated runner, Bob knew it was something he would definitley enjoy.

The first Hood To Coast Relay took place, August 7th, 1982 on a full moon, with 8 teams of 10 runners. Bob made simple spray paint marks on the road to indicate exact exchange points, (being a perfectionist architect, this meant exactly every 5 miles). This translated to one exchange point being in the middle of a very busy intersection in Portland!

Word got out of Bob's adventurous relay event, and the race began to take on a life of its own. As Hood To Coast grew each year, it necessitated much safer exchange points with available parking, resulting in varying leg lengths that continue today. In 1989, the event outgrew capacity for the town of Pacific City and moved to the beachside city of Seaside, Oregon. The distance of the event then increased to 197 miles, with teams growing in size to 12 members, in order to accommodate the extra mileage.

In 1999 a cap of 1,000 teams was agreed upon by Hood To Coast and Clatsop County to keep the event safe and enjoyable to all who participate. The limit still exists today, with Hood To Coast filling on "opening day" of registration for the past ten years!

In early 2006, Bob brought Felicia, his daughter and long-time runner, on board the Hood To Coast organization. She has taken on much of Bob's responsibilities and passion for the race, having participated in HTC six times, and attended or assisted in the race 24 of the last 27 years. Thus the Hood To Coast tradition as "Mother of All Relays" plans to continue for many years to come!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

2 Easy Days in a Row

After my long Sunday run I did 45 min on the bike yesterday and an easy 6 mile jog with the dog today- I need at least 2 days to recover, and hopefully will be ok to bounce back with a hard interval session tomorrow.

Sometimes there is a fine line between needing to put in the distance and requiring too much time to recover. Kenny Moore, who placed 4th in the 72 Olympic Marathon, used to do his long ones every 10 days as opposed to every week. He was logging up to 30 miles on those long ones so needed the extra days.

Some believe that you can train very effectively for a marathon by running just 3 days a week, one long, one medium, and one interval/tempo run. Not a bad idea, especially as you approach 20 miles on that long run. I probably did not need to run today either, but whether or not an easy 6 recovery run does any additional harm is anybody's guess.

Rod Dixon Running NY Marathon- 25 years after his memorable win

That's why I believe so much that recovery is the key to successful training. Runners have to be careful not to do too much anaerobic work. I think you have to learn to run by your own instincts. That's something that might be missing nowadays when athletes are surrounded by coaches and exercise physiologists and heart-rate monitors. You can lose the ability to be in touch with your own instincts, and to trust them. Sure, you'll make some mistakes, but that's what we do. And you learn as much or more from your mistakes as you do from winning -Rod Dixon interviewed by Amby Burfoot,

Rod Dixon is a class act. He won a bronze medal in the 1500 at the Munich Olympics in 1972, and broke 2hr 09 winning the New York Marathon in 1983. An amazing talent.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Marine Corps Marathon Results are Posted

Marine Corps Marathon Results- 18,261 finishers

N ANDREW DUMM 02:22:44
C. FRED JOSLYN 02:23:54
BRIAN DUMM 02:26:00


21 Miles Today!

I did 7 miles with the dog, ate some oatmeal, then went another 14. Not a bad day for me! Time was slow- 1 hr 54 min for the last 14.

Paula Radcliffe Proves She is Ready for NY Marathon

Paula Radcliffe, who ran 51:11 for 10 miles in less than ideal conditions at the BUPA Great South Run, appears to be fit and ready for the New York Marathon.

17 Kenyans in Top 20 at Frankfurt Marathon-Unknown Wins

Frankfurt Marathon Top Ten MEN -

1. Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot (KEN) 2:07:21
2. Wilson Kigen (KEN) 2:08:16
3. Stephen Kiogora (KEN) 2:08:24
4. Philemon Kirwa Tarbei (KEN) 2:08:47
5. Benson Barus (KEN) 2:08:57
6. Japhet Kosgei (KEN) 2:09:24
7. Benjamin Maiyo (KEN) 2:09:58
8. Julius Kibet Koskei (KEN) 2:10:14
9. Vincent Kipsos (KEN) 2:10:23
10. William Kiplagat (KEN) 2:10:53

The winner, Robert Cheruiyot, made his very first trip outside of Kenya a memorable one by winning this race in his very first marathon. Look at the depth!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Nike Fixes Marathon Result in San Francisco

Three days after Nora Colligan won the Nike Women's Marathon, she learned that she actually had to share the title of top finisher in the San Francisco race.

New Yorker Arien O'Connell was 11 minutes faster Sunday, but Colligan crossed the finish line first because she was registered as an elite runner and among the first field to leave the starting line, 20 minutes before O'Connell and the others. O'Connell, a school teacher in Brooklyn, crossed in a personal-best of 2 hours, 55 minutes, 11 seconds -- while Colligan, of Austin, Texas, finished in 3:06:30.

MY COMMENT: Nike did the right thing.

Kara Goucher Making Her Marathon Debut at New York

Kara Goucher, who competed in the 5,000 and 10,000 meters in Beijing, is moving up to the marathon. In Sept, 2007, Goucher ran a 1:06:57 half marathon in England, defeating marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe. She also won a bronze in the 10,000 meters at the Athletics World Championships in Osaka.

Kara is coached by Alberto Salazar who knows a thing or two about marathon preparation.

Great North Run Half Marathon

Stretching Device Works For Runners Too

I just purchased one of these martial arts stretching devices. For around $20, I really like the stretch you can give hamstrings, low back, and adductors. The tension increases as you pull on the handle. Simple but very effective!

Remember Zola Budd?

Zola Budd Pieterse, 42, a South African runner who once held the world record for 5K and was a 2-time world cross country champion, is now living in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina attempting a comeback as a masters runner. She is best known for running her races barefoot and tangling up with Mary Slaney in the LA 1984 Olympic 3,000 meter final. Zola is entered in the New York Marathon.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Focus on Cross Country!

Go to for the latest news on college cross country. Nov 1-2 is conference championship weekend! GO BADGERS!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Dave's Training Update- Seattle Marathon Coming up fast!

The temptation to run extra miles is always greater once you've committed to a marathon, but not always wiser. Wednesday I felt great even though I had run 15-16 miles on Tuesday. Did I go long again? In my younger days, of course. Today, I was tempted but stuck to the plan- easy 60 minute run in the morning and a short 30 min bike in the afternoon.

Yesterday (Thurs), feeling good, I did a 4 mile tempo in 25 min and change (9.4 mph ave on the GPS). I have not tried a workout like that in recent memory, but now I have a goal to shoot for next time (break 25 min).

As you get older (I am 55), enjoy your easy days.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Very Tough Workout by Galen Rupp

The 30-40 consists of this: Run the first half of a 400-meter lap in 40 seconds, the second half in 30 seconds. And repeat, as often as you can stand to do it. It requires repeatedly pushing into anaerobic territory, recovering slightly and doing it again.

"The record was five miles, by Steve Prefontaine," said Alberto Salazar, Rupp's coach and a former Oregon star. "I think the furthest I ever made it was four miles."

Running at the Nike campus track Saturday morning, with the leaves swept out of Lane 1, Rupp pushed through one of the toughest track workouts of his career, speeding up and slowing down over and over -- for 24 laps. That's six miles, completed in 27 minutes, 57 seconds.

MY COMMENTS: This is pretty amazing when you consider he broke 28 min for 6 miles running half of the 200s in 40.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Personal Marathon Training Update

My training ground- Robin Hill Park-about 2 miles from my place- has beautifully groomed trails like these- the picture on the left is Olympic Discovery Trail where I do my 800 meter repeats and long runs. A 1 mile jog to the trail, which runs about 30 miles in length, is great if you don't mind out and back. I love the fact that blackberries are plentiful along the trail!

I am currently in the middle of preparing for the Seattle Marathon Nov 30- based on the reviews I read in, Seattle is not my first choice for a race but the schedule is perfect timing and Seattle is just a short drive away. Weather could be a big factor, along with hills

I am putting more effort into my preparation for this one than my 5 other 2008 marathons- spending more time on pavement allows for a quicker training pace. Last week I had 2 days of 17-18 miles,with a 3rd at 14-15. Yesterday I finally got around to my 800s, feeling pretty good with 6. I am also getting in an hour on the bike on easy run days. I am even stretching some at night!

One problem- I am missing hills here in Sequim- I don't like the idea of driving to workouts to find them. Today I did 3 x 60 sec of uphill trail in gorgeous Robin Hill Park- if I do them frequently enough that will have to do. I am nursing some slight discomfort in my left achilles so have to watch it anyway on hills.

It's no secret that I want to break 3 hours- last year 2 hr 27 was the winning time at Seattle and 40 or so were under 3 so I have to believe it's reasonably fast unless we get some nasty weather.

Note: Mark down June 7 on your calendar -The Olympic Discovey Trail serves as the route for the North Olympic Discovery Marathon- Sequim to Port Angeles. The reviews of runners who have done this race rate it as one of the best!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fastest Runner Does Not Win- San Francisco Marathon Organizers Blew It

While (Arien) O'Connell had the greatest run of her life and covered the course faster than any woman, she was told she couldn't be declared the winner because she didn't run with the "elite" group who were given a 20-minute head start.

At the awards ceremony, the O'Connell clan looked on as the top times were announced and the "elite" female runners stepped forward to accept their trophies.

"They called out the third-place time and I thought, 'I was faster than that,' " she said. "Then they called out the second-place time and I was faster than that. And then they called out the first-place time (3:06), and I said, 'Heck, I'm faster than her first-place time, too.' "

"The theory is that, because they had separate starts, they weren't in the same race," Estes said. "The woman who is winning the elite field doesn't have the opportunity to know she was racing someone else." (Jim Estes is associate director of USA Track & Field Long Distance Running). The Chicago Marathon had a similar problem when Wesley Korir ran the 4th fastest time but was not awarded the 4th place prize money ($15,000) because he wasn't in the elite field. Chicago Tribune

Difficult situation for the race director to fix after awards have already been presented, but I would have corrected the official results and had a duplicate trophy made up to present the real winner. In Chicago, how does a Kenyan capable of a top 4 finish NOT get into the elite field?

Do A Hard Run 3 Weeks Before Your Marathon

I know that the Hansons do this, too, about three weeks out from a marathon. A lot of people think if you can do 16 to 20 miles at marathon goal pace, without a taper, you should be able to then take a two-week taper and then do the whole marathon at that pace. -Josh Rohatinsky speaking about a 20 mile time trial he did at 5 min per mile in his NY Marathon preparation Josh ran 2:15:22 in his marathon debut, placing him 9th in the U.S. Olympic Trials.

Bigfoot has Flat Feet

Ever hear of "the wet test"? From this photo,taken in the Himalayans, it looks like "yeti", otherwise known as Bigfoot needs a straight lasted running shoe. This print is only 8" so maybe it's a young one.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Marathon Training Programs by Hal Higdon

Need a progressive plan to follow to prepare for your next marathon? Go no further than

His variations include options for novice, intermediate , advanced. For a small fee you can sign up for one of his Interactive Training Programs

He also offers other training programs such as 5K, 10K, 10 mile, and half marathon.

Books by Hal Higdon

Sunday, October 19, 2008

This is More Than Just a Great Running Book!

Check out Dick Beardsley's website for more details on this great story. Dick is a fabulous motivational speaker for any of you race directors out there looking for a key noter. His 2008 calendar lists 66 appearances and speaking engagements!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Favorite Running Quotes from 72 Olympic Marathon Champion Frank Shorter

"You don't run 26 miles at five minutes a mile on good looks and a secret recipe."

"Because running fast is more fun than running slow."

"Hills are speedwork in disguise."

"I think the secret of my light, quick, foot strike is related to the fact that I have fragile feet."

"When I am totally race fit, I don't worry about breathing or technique - they take care of themselves."

"Again, racing for me was about energy management."

Are you Frank Shorter? "No, but I used to be."

Friday, October 17, 2008

Water Plus Glycerol Before Your Next Marathon- maybe

Pre-exercise hyperhydration delays dehydration and improves endurance capacity during 2 h of cycling in a temperate climate.

This study demonstrated that drinking water with glycerol prior to endurance exercise "improved peak power output and time to exhaustion by 5 and 14%, respectively." (glycerol helps the body retain water)

Note: During pre-exercise hyperhydration subjects ingested 1776 + or - 102 ml of fluid, together with 82.0 + or - 4.7 g of glycerol. That's 60 oz (just under 1/2 gallon!) given during 80 minutes pre exercise- who does that?? I know what you are thinking- One subject out six total had to urinate during the hyperhydration trial.

Authors conclude that pre-exercise hyperhydration improves endurance capacity and peak power output and decreases heart rate and thirst sensation, but does not reduce rectal temperature during 2 h of moderate to intense cycling in a moderate environment when fluid consumption is 33% of sweat losses

Another good question - what happens when you hyperhydrate without glycerol?

Journal of PHYSIOLOGICAL ANTHROPOLOGY Vol. 27 (2008) , No. 5 pp.263-271

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Marathon Calendars

Researching which marathon to run? Here are some popular websites featuring comprehensive marathon calendars.

Association of International Marathon and Distance Races (AIMS)

Marathon Popularity Exploding!

You know marathons are becoming popular when the inaugural San Antonio Rock & Roll, scheduled for Nov 19- sells out with a limit of 30,000! How about 70 live bands performing on the course?

At the Las Vegas Marathon, last year 207 participants did their best Elvis impersonation (I doubt marathon running was ever at the top of Elvis's to do list) . This is probably the only race that features a "run through wedding chapel".

Regardless, (Peter Englehart, CEO of Competitor Group) said he is confident the event (despite financial trouble) has a bright future and in due time could rival his company's biggest ventures: the Rock 'n' Roll Arizona Marathon, which drew 31,000 entrants in January for its full and half-marathon; the Country Music Marathon, which also drew 31,000 for full and half-marathons in April in Nashville, Tenn.; and the Rock 'n' Roll San Diego Marathon, which netted 22,000 in June for its full marathon.

The Las Vegas event (Dec 9), which has a full and half-marathon, attracted approximately 17,000 entrants last year.

"Our event (New York City Marathon Nov 12) has the most worldwide TV viewers of any sport," says Crandall, who says some broadcasts of the race garner some 312 million viewers worldwide According to the website, New York receives 100,000 applicants

Last year, 20,674 finished The Marine Corps Marathon (this year the race is set for Oct 26). Check out their surprising list of famous finishers!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Best of Steve Prefontaine


Pre: The Story of America's Greatest Running Legend, Steve Prefontaine

Prefontaine The Movie

Without Limits

Fire on the Track: The Steve Prefontaine Story DVD

Another Marathon World Record!

Betty Jean McHugh set a world record Sunday at the 29th Royal Victoria Marathon -- and that's not even the most interesting part of her story.

She ran for four hours, 36 minutes and 52 seconds, and pushed through the finish line to loud cheers from the crowd and the booming voice of the announcer. The real kicker? She's 80 years old.

Does Cycling Improve Running?

I don't have any direct evidence, but if I had to guess I doubt any of the African distance runners that dominate distance running today do very little if any cycling.
That does not mean, however, that cycling can't help your running and that you should not use it.

Former Olympian Ed Eyestone published a study in 1993 that is summarized as follows:

This study compared water running, cycling, and running for maintaining VO2max and 2-mile run performance over a 6-week training period. Thirty-two trained subjects between the ages of 18 and 26 were evaluated for maximum oxygen uptake (VO2max) and 2-mile run performance. Subjects were stratified by a 2-mile run pretest into high, medium, and low performance levels and then randomly assigned to water running, cycling, or running training. The three groups trained with similar frequency, duration, and intensity over a 6-week period. After 6 weeks of training, all of the groups made a small but statistically significant decrease in fitness (VO2max), but no change in 2-mile run time. However, there were no differences with respect to either training modality or pretraining performance level. It was concluded that over a 6-week period, runners who cannot run because of soft tissue injury can maintain VO2max and 2-mile run performance similar to running training with either cycling or water running.

This means that least on the short term, you can maintain good running fitness through cycling.

Besides the obvious (increasing quad strength, higher VO2, building aerobic enzyme activity) I've found that by focusing on pedaling technique, cycling is a good way to increase ankle flexibility and range of motion. According to Better Training for Distance Runners by David Martin and Peter Coe, "ankle flexibility seems best African runners, particularly those who ran barefoot as children." Pedals with clips allow greater use of ankles than you get running, and it makes sense that ankle flexibility can help runners generate additional force at push-off.

Uphill high intensity intervals and easy spinning recovery rides are 2 examples of how you can use cycling to improve running. I'd plan to use cycling to replace easy run days, or as a second workout- going easy if you ran hard, or hard if you ran easy. Pretty simple.

Check out this article by Brendon Walters that cycled across the country and followed up with a 16 minute PR in a marathon on only 1 month of run training.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Looking For a Breakthrough

My last 3 marathons have been
3hr 02min-
3hr 03min
3hr 02min

I want to get under 3 again, so it's time to step it up. I've did about 18 miles Saturday and again today- yesterday was an easy 4-5 miles with a 16 mile bike ride in the afternoon.

I'll take an easy day tomorrow and try to come back with a quality interval session on Wed.

Now living in Sequim, WA, I am spending less time on trails but getting much better quality training- faster pace and longer miles.

The final piece, of course, is picking a good race. Right now I am looking at the Seattle Marathon Nov 30.

I Wear a Phiten Necklace

Does the Phiten Necklace help? Probably not, but I wear it anyway. These items, along with magnets and various minus ion products, are popular in Japan.

Phiten Products

The necklaces being worn by many Red Sox players and other stars including Johan Santana, Jim Thome and Justin Morneau are called Phiten necklaces. Developed in Japan, the nylon-coated titanium necklaces are intended to promote pain relief and enhance performance through improved circulation and stress reduction. -yahoosports

Read the testimonials on

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Olympian Jorge Torres Inspires Kids to Run

Great, great inspirational story about Jorge Torres who made the 2008 Olympic Team in the 10,000 meters.

When Torres first started running in middle school, the sport wasn't a passion but just something that got him attention, he said. It was his former coach Greg Fedyski who instilled in him the extra drive and motivation to make it to the top, he said.

After he won his first national cross-country title as a 6th grader, Fedyski told

him two things, Torres recalled: don't get a big head, and write down your goals. Torres sat down in the school gym and wrote down that he wanted to win a couple of state titles. That wasn't good enough for Fedyski.

"He said to me: 'Write down your short-term goals, your long-term goals, and goals beyond your imagination."

So he made the list longer, adding state and national titles at the high school and college levels, and making the 2008 U.S. Olympic team. The moral of his story? No goal is beyond reach, he said.

"You never know where you are going to get, what kind of talent you have, and what kinds of things life is going to throw at you," Torres told the students. "You have your whole future ahead of you, and it starts right here. You have to set goals in life

All-Time Marathon List

Philip Hersh of the Chicago Tribune recently wrote an article ranking the top 12 marathoners all time. Pretty tough job, comparing different eras-

1. Abebe Bikila, Ethiopia. The only no-brainer choice. By winning at Rome in 1960 and Tokyo in 1964, he began the African era in distance running. He set world records in both victories – the only man since 1920 to set a world marathon record in an Olympics. Bikila won 14 of 15 marathons.

2. Frank Shorter, United States. Won Olympic gold and silver medals. His gold in 1972, when an imposter preceded him onto the track for the finish, attracted such attention it helped spur the jogging boom in the United States. Four-time winner of the prestigious Fukuoka Marathon.

3. Samuel Wanjiru, Kenya. History will tell if I have overrated Wanjiru, but he won the 2008 Olympics in a race may have redefined men’s championship marathoning tactically. Despite temperatures between 75 and 80 degrees for the final three-fourths of the race, the pace was fast from start to finish, and Wanjiru’s winning time of 2:06:32 took nearly three minutes off the 24-year-old Olympic record. It was the first time under 2:08 in any championship marathon. At 21, he is the youngest marathon gold medalist ever. Also won Fukuoka in record time for the 61-year-old race.

4. Mamo Wolde, Ethiopia. Wolde won the 1968 Olympic marathon and, at age 40, won a bronze medal four years later. He also won the first marathon at the All-Africa Games in 1973.

5. Bill Rodgers, United States: "Boston Billy," the waif from Wesleyan, helped popularize the sport with his relentless goodwill and unassuming nature as he won the Boston and New York Marathons four times each from 1975 from 1980, twice setting U.S. records at Boston. The 1980 U.S. Olympic boycott killed his best chance for a medal in the Games (he was 40th in 1976). Won Fukuoka. Ranked world No. 1 three seasons.

6. Haile Gebrselassie, Ethiopia. Gebrselassie is the greatest distance runner ever and has set two marathon world records, the latest (2:03:59) a month ago in Berlin. But all his marathon victories except one at Fukuoka have come in races that were essentially time trials. He was 3rd and 9th against strong fields in London, and he chickened out of the marathon at the 2008 Olympics, fearing heat and pollution.

7. Clarence DeMar, United States. Won seven Boston Marathons from 1911 through 1930, setting course records in all but the last, when he was 41 years old. Ran infrequently from 1912 through 1922 because of college and military service. Bronze medal at 1924 Olympics.

8. Waldemar Cierpinski, East Germany. The 1976 and 1980 Olympic marathon champion. Bronze medalist at the 1983 worlds. Since his name was found in secret police doping files after the Berlin Wall fell, it is likely Cierpinski was among the many beneficiaries of his country’s state-sponsored doping program. What is unknown is how many other marathoners worldwide also were doping in an era when it was ridiculously easy to beat testing.

9. Gezahegne Abera, Ethiopia: Olympic champion in 2000 and world champion in 2001. (Only man to win both). Three-time Fukuoka winner. London winner.

10. Stefano Baldini, Italy: Olympic champion (2004) and two European Championship golds. Two World Championship bronzes. Two second places at London.

11. Toshihiko Seko, Japan: Four victories at Fukuoka, two in Boston, one each in Chicago and London, making him the only man to win all four races. Less successful at Olympics, with a 9th and 14th.

12. Pheidippides, Greece. His run over the approximately 24 miles from Marathon to Athens with news of a Greek victory in 490 B.C. was not an unusual jaunt for Greeks of his era, when couriers often ran for days. When the modern Olympics began in Athens in 1896, the inclusion of a race along the approximate route Pheidippides is believed to have run created the mythos of the marathon -- as did the sad fact that he dropped dead after finishing.

MY COMMENTS: Clearly this guy is clueless- if you read some of the comments on the letsrun message board, you'll understand why.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

More Thoughts on the Sub 2 Hour Marathon

Using a graph and his own formula, Martin predicts the 2-hour mark will be broken in 2015. Using the same technique, he predicted years ago that a woman would break 2:20 in 2002 — Naoko Takahashi of Japan beat his forecast by four months with a 2:19:46 in September 2001. (Dave Martin is an PhD exercise physiologist and respected marathon expert)

"I don't think the top runners are even talking about it. I've heard physiologists say 2:02 is the limit. Obviously it can come down some more. I don't think 2 hours is happening real soon. But I would not bet money on it." -Bill Rodgers

"I don't think we'll see it in our lifetime or with the human body as we know it. I'm sure they said the same thing about the 4-minute mile. To do it, you are going to have to come within a minute of the world record in the half marathon (58:33, by Wanjiru) and then still have the energy and reserves to do it again. It's inconceivable.

"I don't think there's anyone with that amount of energy or oxygen-carrying capacity."
-Alberto Salazar

Friday, October 10, 2008

Ironman World Championship in Kona Oct 11! 1 PM EST

Ironman World Championship

2.4 mi. swim • 112 mi. bike • 26.2 mi. run

Race Director:
Diana Bertsch
74-5599 Alapa Street #1
Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

Phone: 808 329 0063
Fax: 808 326 2131


Where did Ironman begin?

When a group of Navy Seals started an argument about who was the fittest athlete in 1978, Commander John Collins suggested that the best way to decide would be to combine the Waikiki Rough Water Swim, the Around Oahu Bike Race and the Honolulu Marathon ... whoever finished would be a real Ironman.

Fast-forward 30 years and you have the world's most prestigious one-day endurance event!

Ford Ironman World Championships, Kona, Hawaii-30 years!

Qualified athletes

Athlete tracker

Track the race at Ironmanlive

Chicago Marathon This Weekend!

Clip from Spirit of the Marathon featuring the Chicago Marathon

Chicago Marathon website

Live Race Coverage:

On the Internet, TV or the radio: Universal Sports ( will have a live marathon Webcast. NBC-Ch. 5 ( kicks off its televised marathon broadcast around 6 a.m. and WSCR-AM 670 The Score ( starts coverage at 7 a.m.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Ultra Marathons are Not For Everybody- How About You?

An ultramarathon is any organized footrace extending beyond the standard marathon running distance of 42 kilometers, 195 meters (26 miles, 385 yards). Ultra races typically begin at 50 kilometers and can extend to enormous distances. There is no limit.

Other sites-
Ultramarthon training plan

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

High Blood Sugar Problem Apparently Solved

Jo Pavey believes she has finally seen off the health problems which threatened to prevent her switching from the track to a road-running career.

The Commonwealth 5,000m silver medallist will never forget how she staggered over the line in her half-marathon debut at the Bupa Great North Run in 2006 and needed urgent medical treatment due to high levels of blood sugar.

But after gaining a magnificent third place and personal best time of 68minutes 53seconds behind Gete Wami and Magdalene Mukunzi in Sunday's (1/2 marathon) race, the 35-year-old believes she can fulfil her ambition of moving up to the marathon.

Pavey, whose new confidence is founded on physiological and dietary advice, including eating a tuna sandwich three hours before her race, admits she expects to run a full marathon next year. -from

MY COMMENT: I've heard of and experienced low blood sugar while running but high? Not unless you are diabetic. I need to research this one some more.

Lake Tahoe Marathon Week

Plenty of options to choose from in Lake Tahoe last weekend- full schedule of events here.

photo from

You may run, walk, swim, paddle, pedal or swing one or more of the many events during Lake Tahoe Marathon week. Events take place over a 1-5 day stay at Lake Tahoe. The main marathon is run on Sunday starting on Commons Beach in Tahoe City and finishes on Pope Beach near South Lake Tahoe. Marathon Week includes 3 different Marathons as part of the Tahoe Triple. Run them all or pick and choose

Chuck Engle is at it again- winning the Tahoe Triple- 3 full marathons in 3 days.

Day 1: 3:12:36

Day 2: 2:57:15

Day 3: 3:04:36

Tahoe Triple Results

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Marathon Maniacs are Unbelievable!

In the 70s I used to think that 1 or 2 marathons a year was plenty. A month to recover, 4.5 months of hard training, taper, then race again.

Along came Doug Kurtis, a guy who broke new ground in the 80s and 90s by running sub 2 hr 20 min marathons every 3-4 weeks, even into his 40s. I turned 40 in 1993, and ran 2 hr 34 min at the 94 Boston (ok- so it was year of the tailwind). Kurtis won the masters that year in 2 hr 15! I always thought he was some kind of genetic freak to be able to recover that quickly.

Then I heard about the marathon maniacs (

If I hadn't met some of the members, I might have a hard time believing they can do what they say.

To be in the Marathon Maniacs Hall of Fame, you have to do one of the following:

1. 51 marathons in 1 year....FOR 3 CONSECUTIVE YEARS!

2. Run a marathon in all 50 states...3 TIMES!

3. Complete a 100 mile race... 99 TIMES!


Not sure how many are actually in the Maniac Hall of Fame, but I have met one aspiring member- Van Phan is nearing the end of her 3 consecutive years of 51 marathons or ultras. Incredible!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Is a Sub 2 Hour Marathon Possible?

'Without doubt I will see a two-hour marathon in my lifetime,' Bedford, who is 58, says. 'It might be towards the end of my life. It might be another 20 years. But, yes, it will definitely happen.' -David Bedford, former 10K world record holder

Interesting views presented at on what it will take to break 2 hours in the marathon- a mind boggling average of 4 min 34.8 seconds per mile (Hallie Gebrselassie averaged 4 min 44 seconds per mile in his recent 2 hr 03 min 59 sec world record run).

How Many Gels Should You Eat in a Marathon?
We recommend using one or more gels on all of your long runs in preparation for a marathon. Our general rule of thumb is to consume no more than one e-Gel pack every five miles. If you run 6 minute miles, you would consume no more than one every 30 minutes. If you run 12 minute miles you would consume no more than one per hour, etc. However, if you are not able to maintain the recommended hydration plan during the run, then you should reduce your gel intake accordingly.

Hammernutrition.comConsume 1-3 servings per hour (see chart below) along with 16-28 ounces of plain water per hour from a separate source.

Suggested Doses by Body Weight*:

Up to 120 pounds: up to 2 servings/hour
120-155 pounds: up to 2.5 servings/hour
155-190 pounds: up to 3 servings/hour
190+ pounds: up to 3.5 servings/hour
*These are estimated doses. Each athlete should determine in training, under a variety of conditions, their personal optimum.

Marathon Gel & Calorie Calculator I plugged in my numbers and the calculator recommended the first gel at 9 miles, then every 6 miles after. article titled "Carbs on the Run"

Jackie Dikos, R.D., a consultant dietitian who heads Nutrition Success in Indianapolis, suggests that runners start "fueling before the onset of fatigue." That means you should start taking in carbs between 30 and 60 minutes into your workout or race, depending on the intensity of your run. Dikos, who ran in this year's Women's Olympic Marathon Trials, starts drinking a carb-rich sports drink about 40 minutes into a marathon. You should then continue fueling in frequent, small doses. The ideal is 100 to 250 calories (or 25 to 60 grams of carbs) per hour, after the first hour of running, says Nancy Clark, M.S., R.D., author of Nancy Clark's Food Guide for Marathoners. That's the equivalent of one to 2 1/2 sports gels or 16 to 40 ounces of sports drink per hour.

In the post below, Owen Anderson recommends 30 grams of carbohydrate per hour. That would be 120 calories, or slightly more than 1 gel.

MY COMMENTS: Looks like everybody has an opinion- I like to take 1 gel with water every 30 minutes- replacing close to 200 calories per hour. That would be 5 or 6 gels in a full marathon. Like anything else, try it in training before you do it in a race.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Mice Crave Running

'These mice have run for six days. They want to run, and they're ready to run, but they can't. Change in brain activity is an indication of their motivation to run.' -Stephen Gammie, assistant professor of zoology at University of Wisconsin

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Suzy Favor-Hamilton - The REAL STORY

"With 200 yards to go, I hit empty on my gas tank," she begins. "At that point I started to have a panic attack. In my mind, I knew winning was the option, only winning could be a success."

With the finish line in sight, another runner passed her and she thought, "OK, silver." Then two more women passed and with them her chance at a medal.

"In fourth place I decided fourth was not good enough and I somehow needed to vanish," she says. "But how do you vanish when the whole world is watching?"

She recalls the flurry of thoughts that followed. "I thought of my best friend who was dying of cancer and was watching the race. I thought of my family, and my brother had passed away a year before, and thought if I could win they would be happy. I was thinking about my husband and my coach. And people had told me, If you can win the gold just think about the impact that would have on the sport.' "

Then comes what she calls the toughest admission of her life: "I was thinking about everyone, how happy they would be. And at that moment I had let them all down, so falling was the option. And I fell."

What a powerful story- Suzy went to high school in Stevens Point, the town where I went to college and lived for 10 years. What a story about an amazing talent.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

3 hr 03 min 48 sec at Bellingham Bay Marathon


1. Peter Oviatt, Bellingham, WA M 38... 2:44:07... 6:16
2. Eric Barten Beaverton, OR M 24.... 2:50:00... 6:29
3. Alex Bunn Olympia, WA M 36......... 2:54:40... 6:40
4. Dave Deschenes Bellingham, WA M 35. 2:55:38... 6:42
5. Daniel Gallant Bellingham, WA M 48. 2:58:31... 6:49
6. Arthur Gamirov Bellingham, WA M 22. 3:02:14... 6:57
7. Michael Brisbois Redmond, WA M 44.. 3:03:04... 6:59
8. David Elger Coupeville, WA M 55... 3:03:48... 7:01
9. Steeve Guerin Surrey, BC M 47....... 3:08:45... 7:12 2
10. Greg Ripley Orcas Island, WA M 33. 3:10:41... 7:16

I felt much better than Skagit Flats 3 weeks ago, however this was a much tougher course.

One mistake I made was running and chatting with Peter Oviatt, the eventual winner. At Skagit Flats, we got acquainted during the first 10 miles. He eventually went on to run negative splits and win in 2 hr 47 while I faded to 3hr 2 min.

Sure enough, at Bellingham I knew better but again found myself side by side with Peter, getting pulled along to some 6:30 mile splits in the early going. He left me at 6 miles, but the quick start didn't do me much good in the latter stages. The hills were especially tough in the last 6 or I am sure that I still could have broken 3 hours.

This was a beautiful course including several miles of cool, shaded trail running. It was also a perfect 45 degrees at the start!