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Month: September 2017

September 30, 2017

Running Documentaries and Videos You Should Watch #9: Breaking2 | Documentary Special

Watch National Geographic’s one-hour special on Eliud Kipchoge and Nike’s quest to break the two-hour barrier in the marathon.

September 30, 2017

Some thoughts after the Bill Dellinger Invitational – BYU rocks, Rainsberger flies

Katie Rainsberger smashes the course record and BYU takes 1–4 on the men’s side of the Bill Dellinger Invitational on Friday.

September 26, 2017

What we learned from the Berlin Marathon

The world-record attempt and battle between Eliud Kipchoge, Wilson Kipsang, and Kenenisa Bekele all proved to be a bust at the Berlin Marathon on Sunday. But despite those let downs, it was still a pretty thrilling marathon.

Here are some storylines to come out of Berlin.

Kipchoge is the marathon GOAT 

Aside from the pomp and circumstance, what I was most looking forward to from Berlin was seeing how Kipchoge recovered from his sub-2-hour attempt in May.

And I guess the answer is pretty well. While the world record still stands, Kipchoge demonstrated why he will forever be in the conversation as the greatest of all time with the likes of Haile Gebrselassie, Paul Tergat, Dennis Kimetto, Geoffrey Mutai, and Wilson Kipsang.

Despite the poor weather, he slowly and effectively turned the screws on his opponents, making it a two-man race before the 18-mile mark, and finished with the ninth-fastest marathon time ever. He also extended his marathon winning streak to seven.

The best illustration of Kipchoge as the marathon king, in my opinion, is the photo going around from yesterday showing him directing Guye Adola.  If you come at the king…actually, just don’t. Because you will definitely miss.

Guye Adola says “Hello, world” (probably) 

According to some post-race reports, Adola said he decided to run what would be his first marathon ever about three months ago. Talk about a debut.

Surprising the entire running world, Adola, who boasts a 59:06 half marathon PR, was the only runner to challenge Kipchoge. He even attempted to break Kipchoge around the 22-mile mark.

Ultimately it was Kipchoge who did the breaking but Adola finished in 2:03:46, the fastest marathon debut ever. He also established himself as one of a handful of runners who can spar with Kipchoge.

The return of Ryan Vail

The lone American in the elite field, Vail was looking to finish a marathon for the first time in more than three years. And finish he did, turning in an 8th place finish in 2:12:40. This was the third marathon where Vail was the top American, adding to his 13th-place finish at the 2013 New York Marathon and his 10th place finish at London in 2014.

Here’s hoping Vail can parlay this result into some other big-time finishes.

And the return of Gladys Cherono

Similar to Vail, it had been some time since Cherono finished a marathon; the 2015 Berlin Marathon to be exact, which she won. So why not return from injury to the place where you enjoyed the sweet taste of victory? (Literally the top three from Berlin drink from a really big beer mug on the podium).

Cherono’s 2:20:23 Sunday was a little slower than her Berlin debut two years ago but it got the job done. She bested Ethiopian Ruti Aga by 18 seconds and demonstrated a stress fracture that kept her out of marathons last year may finally be behind her.

Bekele and Kipsang didn’t show up

Right around the halfway mark, Bekele began to fall of the pace, and he wouldn’t recover. At about the 25k mark he was 20 seconds back, effectively becoming a non-factor. He eventually dropped out around the 30k mark. After the race, LetsRun’s Jon Gault reported that Bekele’s long time agent Jos Hermens had some choice words for his star athlete. Chief among his concerns is that he was not acting like a professional.

And you know what they say, lightning rarely strikes twice, right? Well who knows if that’s an apt platitude, but shortly after Bekele dropped out, the other titan in the field, 2:03:13 man Wilson Kipsang unceremoniously dropped out. No word yet on the reason, but he promises he’ll be back:

A brief note on the weather

Being from and running in Massachusetts, I know the joys irritations of running through humidity during the summer months. It’s like running in a sauna, or through a rain forest, or whatever other hyperbole you want to use. There is nothing more fun than putting in minimal effort on a run, but still returning home completely drenched in sweat.

According to reports, humidity in Berlin Sunday at the start of the race was 99 percent. Not really conducive to record-breaking marathon times, despite the lead pack going through 13.1 miles in 60:51. Obviously, I can’t speculate on how much the weather impacted runners’ performances this year although I can’t imagine it helped. I can only emphasize as I saw singlets adhesively coat upper bodies, as if glued.

September 25, 2017

An Ode To Boston University Coach Bruce Lehane

Bruce Lehane served as the Boston University coach for over 35 years. During that time, he coached 50 NCAA Division 1 All-Americans, two NCAA Champions and two Olympians. This past Saturday, Lehane passed awayat the age of 68 after a bout with ALS. Bruce wasn’t only a long-time coach with a long list of accolades, but he was a big part of the Boston running community as well. Katie Matthews, class of 2012, wrote a tribute to Lehane after running under his tutelage for five years in college and for the start of her professional running career, as well as serving a stint as an assistant coach at BU.  

It wasn’t until late into my high school career that I considered running for a Division I track program. As I reached out my feelers into the world of collegiate running opportunities, very few top level coaches saw the potential in my 5:04 mile PR, lack of Footlocker XC appearances, or my recent stress fracture.

But Bruce Lehane did. In fact, he told me later that he saw something in me the day I ran to a dismal 40th place finish at a Footlocker regional meet, something I’ll never quite understand.

His recruiting philosophy had always been to place the most time and energy to those individuals already voicing interest in Boston University and his team. I was one of those prospects. Boasting a strong academic focus where major and class selection was valued over practice commitments, it seemed like BU would be a perfect fit for someone like me, where running was giving me an opportunity to afford to attend a very expensive private university but wouldn’t be my main reason for heading to college.

I ran well the first two years at BU, but nothing stellar. However, I developed a strong relationship with Bruce through hundreds of talks in his office, van rides to Franklin Park practices and always picking his brain for advice. I had the somewhat unique experience of entering the team with Bruce’s son, Elliot, and some of his Brookline High teammates from the revered 2008 NXN class who knew Bruce previously. I don’t know if it was befriending them that helped me feel comfort, or having girls who had such respect for, belief in, and success with Bruce take me under their wings, but the team instantly felt like a family.

Bruce Lehane

Whenever Bruce got to telling a story, we usually received much beyond training philosophy. His talks morphed into Boston running history lessons: tales of his former coach Billy Squires leading Salazar, Rodgers, and Beardsley to early success, and the way the running landscape here had changed in the years since. We heard about him growing up in Southie in the 50s, building the famous BU indoor track and from what was the old Armory on Commonwealth Ave., and anecdotes of his sons and home life.

Plenty of his stories focused on collegiate athletes he had coached before us — those whose workouts we were mimicking or who had set records. He always emphasized their character and worth ethic above all else. I learned what being a blue-collar runner was really about. When questioned about training trends or new technology, his favorite catch phrase was always ,“the way to get better at running is by running.”

I soon found I wanted to know everything he could tell me, and eventually what he imparted on me clicked.

In a Hartford Courant article from 2013, Bruce was asked about my jump in performance. He’s quoted as saying “She just transformed. She was sixth in the America East as a sophomore in the 5,000. The next year, she was sixth in the NCAAs in the 5,000. She just took this gigantic leap.”

What Bruce humbly brushed off as a coincidence and no minor fault of his own was anything but. Bruce motivated me and led me to success in a way that was truly unique. He rarely celebrated victories but simply wanted his athletes to learn from each race and move on to the next challenge. Receiving a hug or ‘congratulations’ from Bruce was something my teammates and I used to track for its rarity. With that being said, every single athlete on the team wanted to perform well and better themselves for him. Getting a loud shout from Bruce to pick it up during the last 800m of a race really carried some weight.

Bruce had a way of making each athlete feel like the most important one on the team. He looked for and saw the best in each runner he coached. He guided us all to make strong decisions about the way we spent our energy balancing the many facets of college life and in pursuing of our own goals outside of the sports arena. He put the responsibility in our own hands to become great or remain mediocre. Countless times we were given a workout or race plan to follow through without him in attendance. Whether it was because we were missing practice due to a class commitment or because he was with the other half of the squad at a different track meet, it was on us to figure out the logistics of getting the work in.

On the flip side, Bruce was always willing to come to the indoor track early or stay late into the evening to oversee a workout. Usually it would be a bread and butter workout like 600, 600, 800 x 2, with him quietly reading the splits from the sideline. If we were sick or an injury was nagging, we simply missed the workout for that day and proceeded in training as if we had done it. If we missed more than a couple workouts, we did not race, as Bruce always err on the side of caution. If we were to become injured, as I did during my 2012 season, it wasn’t because of too high mileage or intense workouts, it was due to failure on our part to be smart in recovery and training load.

Track trips became opportunities to explore different parts of the country. Whereas some coaches would have their athletes rest in the hotel for days leading up to competition, I traveled with Bruce to Niagara Falls, the Space Needle, Pier 39, the plains of Texas, and the Oregon coast to name a few places. If we wanted to come into his office and just chat, not about running but just about what was going on in our lives, his door was always open. Under his careful guidance, I eventually lowered my PRs to a 9:05 3k, 15:42 5k, and a 32:44 10k.

In the running community, Bruce was known for his laid-back demeanor. However, the way he loved his athletes was anything but. I’ll never know if I would have had the same athletic achievements under another coach, but I do know I wouldn’t have forged the same relationships, career path, and life philosophy as I have now. Given his humble attitude, he wouldn’t accept me saying so, but I owe so much to this wonderful man.

I remember one day, early in my professional running career, we were having a chat in his office.  I had been lamenting over some petty dating woes and off handedly mentioned wanting to be single and not have to deal with finding a partner.  Bruce became serious, and threw away a comment I said about being “independent.” He said, “But you do need to find someone — sharing your life with someone is one of the most beautiful gifts you’ll ever receive.”

In the years since, I’ve come to realize he was right. It doesn’t matter if you have all the stories, money, skills, or fortune in the world, if you don’t have anyone to share them with, they don’t matter. And Bruce had lots of people to share his life with.

Watching someone I love battle with ALS throughout the last couple of years has been heartbreaking. My thoughts and heart go out to his wife, Lesley, and sons Blaize, Elliot, and Aidan. Thank you for sharing your husband and father with me and so many others. We are all better people for knowing him.

Bruce, wherever you are, I hope you are getting in some quality miles.

Bruce Lehane

Lehane with Katie Matthews


September 23, 2017

Watch 2017 Berlin Marathon Online: Live stream, TV broadcast information

How to watch the 2017 Berlin Marathon online, TV broadcast, results, runner tracking, and more information for September 23, 2017.

September 20, 2017

Idea from Alex: What if Berlin had a countdown clock from 2:02:57?

What would happen to the race, if you put a countdown clock from 2:02:57 on the lead vehicle so runners know when the world record expires on them?

September 20, 2017

The case for Eliud Kipchoge winning the Berlin Marathon

Eliud Kipchoge is the greatest marathoner in the world right now and here’s why he’s going to continue to be the best in Berlin.

September 20, 2017

Feast your eyes on the best male athlete portraits in track and field (Part VIII)

Picture day is something to look forward to every year. These runners surely made the most out of their respective roster portraits. Part VII.

September 19, 2017

An adult man’s humble quest to run a sub-3:30 marathon while training like an idiot

A text message exchange with his brother has set Nicolas Smith on a mission to run a 3:30 marathon running no more than 5 miles per run.

September 19, 2017

Who is going to win in Berlin? Examining the numbers

We take a look at the marathoning careers of Eliud Kipchoge, Wilson Kipsang and Kenenisa Bekele to see who may be favored for the 2017 Berlin Marathon.

September 19, 2017

Takes Like Coffee: Is The Greatest Marathoner Of All-Time Title On the Line In Berlin?

When Wilson Kipsang, Eliud Kipchoge & Kenenisa Bekele face off in the Berlin Marathon, will the winner walk away with the title of greatest of all-time?

September 18, 2017

The Case for Kenenisa Bekele Winning The Berlin Marathon

Kenenisa Bekele is already the greatest of all-time on the track. Now, this is his chance to take down some giants over the marathon.

September 18, 2017

Kenenisa Bekele Doesn’t Seem Too Hype For Berlin

Kenenisa Bekele doesn’t seem too thrilled about possibly chasing a marathon world record in Berlin but has done all he can to prepare for the race.

September 18, 2017

The Case for Wilson Kipsang To Win The Berlin Marathon

Former world record holder Wilson Kipsang will return to the Berlin Marathon for the third time in his career and here’s why he will win.

September 17, 2017

Wake Up To Eliud Kipchoge Winning Berlin In 2015 With His Insoles Falling Out

No one else in this world can say that they have run a 2:04 marathon with the insoles of their shoes falling out. All hail, Eliud.

September 17, 2017

Welcome to Berlin Marathon Week

This week on CITIUS MAG, we’re going to be dedicating our coverage to the Berlin Marathon and the mega race that awaits with Kipchoge vs. Kipsang vs. Bekele

September 17, 2017

PHOTOS: Long Run With The Buffaloes (By Brandon Sotelo)

Took a quick trip out to Boulder to check out the Colorado Buffaloes as they tackled a long run at Gold Hill before the the cross country season heats up.

September 17, 2017

Cross Country is Here. The Athlete Special Season 6

Season 6 of the The Athlete Special kicks off with a subtle shot at The Wood Report’s rankings and a look at an early Georgetown XC workout.

September 15, 2017

The Wood Report: Liability Index – How deep is each NCAA XC team?

We take a look at a few scenarios of how the team race shapes up if the last man scoring struggles, does well or fares as projected.

September 14, 2017

Takes Like Coffee: Eliud Kipchoge drives an Isuzu

A couple wacky headlines today include what Eliud Kipchoge drives, Wayde Van Niekerk Stadium is now more and the Olympics.

September 13, 2017

The Wood Report: Heat Check – How deep is each NCAA XC team?

We’ve created a new chart that is able to display how good or bad a team’s depth is. We examined our projected NCAA championship qualifiers.

September 13, 2017

Feast your eyes on the best male athlete portraits in track and field (Part VII)

Picture day is something to look forward to every year. These runners surely made the most out of their respective roster portraits. Part VII.

September 12, 2017

Wood Report: Syracuse’s Justyn Knight tops NCAA XC Preseason Rankings

Projecting and predicting every finisher at the NCAA Division I Cross Country National Championship. Justyn Knight tops the list.

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September 12, 2017

PHOTOS: 2017 5th Avenue Mile by Jason Suarez

Photos from the 2017 5th Avenue Mile where Nick Willis and Jenny Simpson captured historic victories. All photos by Jason Suarez.

September 12, 2017

Fueling up for a marathon: Keys from a pro

Becky Wade details her eating schedule and how she prepares her body and stomach before big training sessions and major races.

September 12, 2017

Takes Like Coffee: Mo Farah to run London Marathon, Hayward Field renovations delayed

Mo Farah to run the 2018 London Marathon, the Hayward Field renovations are taking longer than expected and more headlines.

September 12, 2017

A turning point in the NOP vs. Bowerman rivalry

Andrew Bumbalough joined Woody Kincaid in the latest Price of a Mile pod and discussed how a prelim in 2012 may have changed the NOP vs. Bowerman rivalry.

September 8, 2017

Takes Like Coffee: Inside look at the WCAP Program

Your top headlines from the running world heading into Friday, Sept. 8. Deadpsin takes a look inside the WCAP Program in Colorado Springs.

September 8, 2017

Our Division II Cross Country Preview

Andrew Wise breaks down the teams, athletes and storylines to watch in the ever-fascinating Division II cross country scene.

September 8, 2017

Revisionist Record Books: Examining track and field’s decade records suggested by Malcolm Gladwell

Why should we erase history? On the House of Run podcast, Malcolm Gladwell suggests recognize track and field’s records with the context of the era.

September 8, 2017

Mailbag: Edward Cheserek signs with Skechers, Berlin Marathon WR hopes

Readers sent in their questions regarding Edward Cheserek signing a professional sponsorship contract with Skechers + the fall marathons.

September 7, 2017

Constructing the Great North Run’s cakewalk for Mo Farah

The Great North Run has added eight more runners for yet another meticulously constructed cakewalk for Sir Mo on British soil!

September 7, 2017

PHOTOS: 2017 HOKA Long Island Mile

Chris O’Hare and Emily Lipari won the elite races at the 2017 HOKA Long Island Mile in the rain. The men’s race was in memory of David Torrence.

September 7, 2017

NYRR Announces Deepest Media Mile Field In History

NYRR has announced the fields for the 5th Avenue Media Mile and it may arguably the deepest in the history of running journos.

September 7, 2017

What it’s like to race the pros at the USATF 20K Champs

Evan Schwartz provides a detailed look at what it’s like for a sub-elite runner to brush shoulders with some of the best in the country.

September 6, 2017

Takes Like Coffee – Long Island Mile Preview: Stars to Run In Memory of David Torrence

Nick Willis, Kyle Merber, Craig Engels and others will run the HOKA Long Island Mile in memory of David Torrence who died at 31 years old.

September 5, 2017

Wood Report: Arkansas Tops Preseason Rankings, Defending Champions NAU 3rd

Our preseason pick for the national champion is in. Cross country guru Isaac Wood breaks down the top 31 teams that will battle at nationals.

September 4, 2017

Introducing The Return Of The Wood Report

Isaac Wood returns to resume his famous cross country rankings, projections, analysis that have been a hit since 2012. The Wood Report is back.

September 4, 2017

Takes Like Coffee: Jordan Hasay, Galen Rupp win big at USATF 20K Champs

Jordan Hasay and Galen Rupp made the most out of the Nike Oregon Project business trip to Connecticut and won the USATF 20K Championships.

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