April 2020 Archives

animated-graphic-2019-nCoV.jpgCoronavirus, photo by Journalist Resource

This is how the COVID-19 virus affected the sport on 30 April 2020...

kirui.jpgGeoffrey Kirui, photo by Worrld Athletics

The World Champ of London 2017, Geoffrey Kirui, wants to run in Boston, if it happens in the Fall 2020...

IMG_1971.jpgLondon 2017 WC, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Seb Coe made it clear. Events come back when it is healthy to have them.

1173570e-c2a8-4be7-8fdd-ec14820cf752.jpgTokyo Stadium, photo by South China News

Thomas Bach was sending a message, curious to see if the various federationsr get the message...

This is a Thursday tempo run. The tempo run gives us a way to build endurance and callous you for upcoming races.

IMG_2215.jpgThe 2017 WC London 5000m, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Thursday, 30 April 2020: warm up, 15 minutes easy, tempo run, 20 minutes, at pace 30 seconds above your ave mile pace for 5k now. So, if you ran 18 minutes, you can run 20 minutes at 6;20 mile pace, this is not to exhaust you, but to build you. 20 minute cooldown,


Barbora Spotakova is due to make her season's debut in Kladno on 1 June, one of six meetings to take place in the Czech Republic in June, photo by Getty Images / European Athletics

The Czech athletics season will hold events in 100 stadiums around the country, as the country comes out of its Coronavirus pandemic quarantine.

Jan Lusis is a 3 time Olympic medalist n the javelin. In 1964, Lusis took the bronze. In 1968, he took the gold and the 1972 Munich Olympics, the Latvian star took the silver medal.

DSC00014.jpgAjee" Wilson takes USATF Indoor 800m, photo by Cortney White

Ajee' Wilson is one of the nicest people that I have ever met. I am totally fascinated that the kind person that we interview is also one of the toughest middle distance racers, who can lead from start to finish, or make a huge move with 200m to go.

Thanks to Ajee' Wilson and her response to Jeff Benjamin on how to train during the current plague.

Sven Arne Hansen .jpgSvein Arne Hansen, photo by European Athletics

Svein Arne Hansen had a stroke just over a month ago. The energetic EA President is in the thoughts and prayers of friends, family, athletes, coaches and fans of European Athletics. A Norwegian sports site provided an update on his condition earlier today.

This was the only way to go, and as Meet Director Mark Wetmore noted, the support of his sponsors, adidas and the City of Boston allowed him to reach out and move the event until 23 May 2021.

We will be there, as the adidas Boost Boston Games is a truly unique event.

adiboostBoston.jpg2019 adidas Boost Boston Games, photo by adidas Boost Boston Games

Well, Justin Lagat surprised me on this one, but it is fun to consider, and it makes complete sense...

13-20-397-slide.jpgEliud Kipchoge out running, before COVID-19, photo by NN Running team

MarathonWoman-hi-res-570x861.jpgKatherine Switzer's book, Marathon Woman

image0-3.jpegRunning Network Writer Jeff Benjamin was Honored by the Staten Island Athletic Club in 1994.
Joining Jeff Were, L-R, Tracy Sundlun, Kathrine Switzer, Tom Fleming

image1-4.jpegJeff Benjamin with Kathrine Switzer at the 2014 Boston Marathon Expo

When Katherine Switzer ran in an age when woman were not allowed to run over 800 meters in the Olympics and that Boston Marathon did not allow woman. Switzer challenged that, and she has championed women's running for nearly six decades. Always supportive of running media, Katherine is always one of those people who I love to see at major events.

We thank Katherine for her responses to Jeff Benjamin and wish her safe running with her husband, Roger Robinson, in New Zealand.

Today is Wednesday, at the end of April. It is an easy day to run, and gets some stride outs.

The run is easy and the stride outs gets the rust out. Enjoy the sense of speed. Enjoy the movement. Please keep the social distancing. In the US, we are getting 30,000 new cases of COVID-19 a day in the U.S. This is not a joke, and anyone can get the virus. Please be careful.

IMG_6811.jpg1,500m heats in 2018 USATF Outoors, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Wednesday, 29 April 2020: warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

Emma Coburn: three races


Emma Coburn set an AR in Glasgow in 2014. Having watched her come along the past few years, it was pretty awe inspiring and I teared up watching her break the AR. The sad thing was, she did not get her AR there, due to some snag in the protocals.

In 2016, the Olympic medal and in 2017, the amazing gold medal again showed just how far this young American had come. The 2019 WC silver, I believe, was an even better race than her 2017 win.

Stuart Weir wrote this fine piece on Emma Coburn. We think that you will enjoy it.

20170811athletics1272.JPGEmma Coburn, Courtney make history, London 2017, photo by Martin Bateman

wlodarrczyk.jpgAnita Wlodarczyk, photo by IAAF.org

anitawlodarczykht.jpgAnita Wlodarczyk, photo by efe.com

Anita Wlodarczyk is the finest women hammer thrower of her generation. In 2008, she took 4th in Beijing, then she won the hammerr in London 2012 and Rio 2016. In World Champs, Anita took gold in 2009 in Berlin, then 4th in Daegu in 2011. In 2013, 2015 and 2017, Anita took gold.

Anita Wlodarczyk is focused on regaining fitness and winning until she retires in 2022.

image1-3.jpegJeff Benjamin With Jacob Thomson right after Thomson's first sub-4 Mile, which he accomplished in 2018 at the Sir Walter Mile (3:57.07)! photo by Jeff Benjamin

Jeff Benjamin asked Jacob Thomson to write about how he's training in the current plague, and how he would suggest young athletes train during this time. Jacob Thomson now runs for the B.A.A. elite club, Team BAA.

world_athletics_logo.jpgThis is a good idea. World Athletics is developing a fund to help elite athletes in the time of the coronavirus. It is a good start, but this will be around for some time.

NNPortugal19-155.jpgAddy Ruiter speaking with Joshua Cheptegai, photo by NN Running team

The NN Running team is an amazing global athletic club. This is a weekly column that the NN Running team provides us, detailing the coaches, athletes and training facilities of the NN Running team.

20180303WIC0878.JPGNatoya Goule, WC Indoor 2018 Birmingham, photo by Martin Bateman

20180303WIC0344.JPGNatoya Goule, WC Indoor 2018 Birmingham, photo by Martin Bateman

This is Stuart Weir's first of two pieces for this week. Natoya Goule is Jamaica's finest female middle distance runner, and Stuart asked her 14 questions....

The idea of a Holmer Fartlek is what we called FSR, a fast strong run. Gently build up the pace, and over the last half, increase the pace each five minutes.

IMG_0127.jpgKonstanz Klausterhalfen, 3000m, 2019 Nike Pre Classic, photo by Brian K. Eder / RunBlogRun

Tuesday, 28 April 2020: warm up, 50 minute run, go out easy for 25.5minutes, come back in 23.5 minutes, cooldown, (Holmer Fartlek)

animated-graphic-2019-nCoV.jpgCoronavirus, photo by Journalist Resource

This is the update from EME News for 27 April 2020, on how the COVID-19 virus affected the sport world.

Stahl,.jpgDaniel Stahl, photo by shanghai.diamondleague.com

Daniel Stahl is a sports super star in Sweden. The 2017 WC London silver medalist moved to gold in 2019, WC Doha. Add that to his 2018 European silver, Daniel Stahl showed that his amazing 71.29m NR in 2017 was the portent of even more fine throwing.

Solomon Barega thinks 5000m WR


Solomon Barega has run 12:43.02. Kenenisa Bekele's WR is the iconic 12:37.35 for 5000 meters.

Barega wants the 5000m record. Barega has some ideas on making the 5000m WR record his. Can he do it? We shall have to wait and see. My humble opinion will be that it will be hard as hell in 2020.

barega.jpgSolomon Barega, photo by thereporterethiopia.com

ostrava_mestsky3.jpgOstrava, Czech Republic stadium

As the Czech Republic opens up after the COVID-19 pandemic, the Czech athletic association is looking to put on a few local athletic meetings.

The easy day after a long run is important. Keep it easy and enjoy it.

ehZyuxRI.jpgAn old track spike, circa 1928, made by adi Dassler, founder of adidas, photo: adidas communications

Monday, 27 April 2020: warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

hayward field.jpgHayward Field, photo by University of Oregon

scparis .jpgStade Charlety, Paris, France, photo by Pangeaguides.com

This is an update on Wanda Diamond League meetings....

Justin Lagat is our senior writer in Kenya. Justin provides a column about once a week that gives us a view of what is happening in Kenya. This is a fascinating one.

IMG_1751.JPGJustin Lagat, getting in some miles...

IMG_1847.jpgWorld Athletics Yannis Nikolau, LetsRun Writer Jonathan Gault, World Athletics CEO Seb Coe, Running Network's Jeff Benjamin, from the Zoom event

image0.jpegSeb Coe, the 3 WRs in 41 days, Athletics Weekly

image1.jpegJeff Benjamin and Seb Coe: 1991 - Runners World Magazine 25th Anniversary Event In NYC - Seb was honored as "The Greatest Runner Of The Last Quarter-Century."

This is part one of a series on Seb Coe and the recent Zoom event he did with Lord Coe.

The long run is a great time to bring some sanity back to your life. Find a course that will not get you ticketed, fined or violating physical social distancing rules.

IMG_0126.jpgSifan Hassan, 2019 Pre in exile (Stanford), photos by Brian Eder / RunBlogRun

Sunday, 26 April 2020: Long runs, 70-75 minutes

warholm.jpgKarston Warholm, photo by London.diamondleague.com

Karston Warholm surprised all but himself and his coach when he won the 400m hurdles in London 2017. The former 400m specialist moved to the 400m hurdles and took to them well. His 2018 and 2019 seasons showed just how good he is. The fans in Norway will sure get a treat with his WR attempt at 300m hurdles on June 11, at the Impossible Games, where athletics and the current pandemic find a compromise.

This is Saturday. Today is a workout in the hills. Just be careful and please keep the physical social distancing wherever you are.

Stay safe, Isolate.

IMG_0717.jpgChris O'Hare, with wife and 2 sons, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Saturday, 25 April 2020: warm up, 45 minute run with six hill charges (at 2 minutes), cooldown

curpr1973whsreunion.blogspot.comrr.jpgMark Curp leads Jon Sinclair and Pat Porter, photo by 1973 WHS reunion blogspot

For five years, from 1985 to 1990, Mark Curp was the world record holder at the half marathon, with a time of 1:00.55. Dionicio Ceron took nine seconds off his record (1:00.46) at the 1990 Phiilly Half Marathon. Mark Curp held ther AR until Ryan Hall broke it in 2007.

The truth is, Mark Curp was one of the finest road racers in the world. He won races from 5k to 20k, and all distances in between. One fun story I have dates back to 1986, when, at the Bobby Crim 10 miler, Ed Eyestone, Mark Curp and, I believe, Josh Kimeto. We went to watch the movie, The Fly. Ed and I sat behind Curp and Josh Kimeto. Ed put his hand on Josh's shoulder at a scary time, and Josh went airborne. Josh laughed, but he had not seen a horror movie before. Mark Curp, seeing that Josh was okay, laughed.

I always admired Mark Curp. I think he was also under rated on the track at 10,000m as well.

Thanks to Mark Curp for answering Jeff's questions....

kipchumba.jpgVincent Kipchumba, photo by DeMadonna.com

This is Justin Lagat's weekly column from Kenya. This week, Justin Lagat caught up with Vincent Kipchumba....

The idea of a daily run sometimes could make you a bit crazy, but now, it keeps you from going crazy.

Enjoy the run today. Keep the physcial social distancing.

DSCF6220.jpgEvan Jager, photo by Cortney White

Friday, April 24, 2020: warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

EAA.jpgThe cancelling of the 2020 Champs could not have been a surprise. This note by EME provides a few more of the details....

1290015_G08_W01.jpgThe Letzigrund Stadium, Zurich, Switzerland, photo by European Athletics

Well, the last championship of 2020 has been cancelled. This is the release from European Athletics on the cancellation. Damn, I was looking forward to it. Love EAA Champs, meets in Paris, travelling and such.

Hartwig Gauder was the finest race walker over 50k in the 1970s and 1980s. Gauder then won medals for the united Germany in the 1990s. An amazing man, he developed a bacterial infection in his heart, finally getting a heart transplant in the 1990s, and then, became an advocate for organ transplants and donations, running the NYC Marathon after his transplant. Hartwig was 65. Please keep his family and friends in your thoughts.

1290511_G08_W01.jpgHartwig Gauder won the Olympic, European and world titles in the 50km race walk in the 1980s, by Getty Images / European Athletics

karston warholm .jpgKarston Warholm, photo by Getty Images / European Athletics

The Oslo Games were off, and now, they are on! With a new title, the IMPOSSIBLE GAMES, the meet will feature top stars taking challenges, using social distancing and keeping the COVID-19 health standards as well.

Well done to meet manager, Steiner Hoen, who announced this earlier this morning.

This is the first day of the announcement, but we know that the late Maurie Plant, an Oslo event staff member since 1981, and huge supporter of the global sport, would be happy.

This is a short piece on Noah Lyles. Noah was gracious enough to speak with a group of media about a month ago, when the IOC decided to postpone the Olympics. Global Athletics put together a zoom conference on Noah Lyles. Noah is a social media godsend, he has fun on twitter and instagram. Noah had not had any experience with zoom before, but he did well.

IMG_1089.jpgNoah Lyles, 2018 USATF Outdoors, Des Moines, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

My belief is this: Noah Lyles has a huge future in front of him. Tokyo 2020 was to be his breakout, now it will be Tokyo 2021. Under the watchful eye of Coach Brauman, Noah Lyles will develop just fine.

IMG_1089.jpgNoah Lyles, 2018 USATF Outdoors, Des Moines, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

For now, it is about keeping one's health, and one's sense of humor.

Thanks to Noah Lyles, and special thanks to Global Athletics (Mark Wetmore, Matt McCarron, Sandra Nel-Kurman).

IMG_1095.jpgNoah Lyles, 2018 USATF Outdoors, Des Moines, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Tempo runs are used by athletes at all levels. The idea is this: use runs with moderate pace to build race focus, race callousing and endurance. I can not say enough about these workouts. I used tempo runs with athletes beginning in the late 1980s.

20200229 RILEY Jacob2 KL.JPGJake Riley takes second in 2020 US Olympic Trials, photo by Kirby Lee

Thursday: warm up, 15 minutes easy, tempo run, 20 minutes, at pace 30 seconds above your ave mile pace for 5k now. So, if you ran 18 minutes, you can run 20 minutes at 6;20 mile pace, this is not to exhaust you, but to build you. 15 minute cooldown.

CDC_2019-nCoV_Laboratory_Test_Kit-720x480.jpgCoronavirus testing, photo by Journalist resource

This is how the COVID-19 virus affected the sport of global athletics on 22 April 2020...

90337573_10218868313876236_6269760823107780608_o.jpgHayward Field in progress, 2020, photo from Tracktown USA

The U.S. Olympic Trials is one of the finest event on the American Track & Field schedule. The ten days of the Trials are all about worshipping athletics. The US Trials showcase the finest athletes from all fifty states. The enormity of the quality of athletes who can run, jump and throw in this country makes our team unparalleled. Unfortunately, many of us take it for granted.

berlin m 1500x500.jpgBerlin Marathon, photo by SCC Events

Is Berlin happening? All we know is that the event will not happen in September. The city of Berlin said no events over 5000 people until 24 October. So, no Oktoberfest! Well, we sure know that they are serious now.

Seriously, the entire fall is up in the air. We will just have to see how things go and wait.

Control, little grasshopper, is an illusion. (You Tube Kung Fu)

image0_1.jpegCoogans, photo by Jeff Benjamin


After becoming the 6th High Schooler to break the 4-minute Mile, Drew Hunter (center) is joined by Irish Mile Legends Eamonn Coghlan and Marcus O'Sullivan after the 2016 Armory Invitational, photo by Jeff Benjamin

image1.jpegThe walls are full of amazing athletic moments, photo by Jeff Benjamin

image2.jpegOnly at Coogan's can Jeff Benjamin (Left) get together with former 100 meters World Record Holder Steve Williams (Center) and 2012 Olympic 1500 Silver Medalist Leo Manzano! photo by Jeff Benjamin

NYRR.jpgThe New York Road Runners have communicated the challenges of the new plague with timeliness, thoughtfulness and honesty. The idea of having running events in NYC Metro at this time would be ludicrous.


Manhattan Invite XC, photo by Jeff Benjamin

The COVID-19 pandemic has decimated events in the sport. Consider this: All major marathons in US cancelled this spring, hopefully some moving to fall. 1.1 million high school athletes will not compete in track & field this spring! 20,000 dual high school track meets were cancelled. 50 high school state track & field meets are probably on the chopping block.

The RRCA is one of the most important sports organizations in the country. It was founded by actual runners (Browning Ross), and the Executive Director Jeane Knaack has asked us to fill out this survey so that they can help us figure out how to do our sporting events in future!

Stay healthy, stay safe, run with physical social distancing!

donavanbrazier.jpegJeff Benjamin and Donavan Brazier, photo by Jeff Benjamin

This podcast is focused on the IOC decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympics to 2021. I believe that the IOC made the right decision. I am curious on the decision making process. It looks from afar that the IOC caved to pressure and did not want to have to make a decision.

ce630328-eb03-11e9-9e8e-4022fb9638c4_image_hires_142045.jpgTokyo Stadium, photo by IOC

Unfortunately, they will have lots more to decide. What will they do if Japan can not control its own COVID-19 outbreak? How will the IOC and Tokyo LOC confirm that each and every athlete from 209 countries is not contagious? Hell, the Olympic village is a human petri dish, and each Olympics some sickness goes around the village. In 1976, Brit Brendan Foster took GBR's only athletic medal, the bronze medal at the 10,000m, after a week of the stomach flu.

This is not over...

Special thanks to Mike Deering of The Shoe Addicts for producing this podcast.

This is Wednesday, and it is another day in the modern plague. Stay safe. This is a real virus no matter what people who flunked high school biology say on YouTube or terrestrial TV. Physical social distancing is key. Stay healthy, be smart. We will be isolated for some time to come. Just be careful. Laugh everyday. Talk to someone and tell them that you love them. Enjoy your run.

TRACK & FIELD High School Nationals by  Steven Sutton DUOMO 10 March 2019 Katelyn Tuohy - 2BSS.jpgKatelyn Tuohy, photo by Steve Sutton / DUOMO

Wednesday, April 22, 2020: warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

gabius.jpgArne Gabius, photo by World Athletics

Arne Gabius is the German record holder in the men's marathon, with his 2:08.33. His luck in Mainova Frankfurt Marathon has been 3 strong marathon runs in the fine German city. Now, Arne has focused on the Tokyo Olympic marathon...r

Ingebrigtsens.jpgHenrik, Jakub, Filip, the Ingebrigtsens, photo by European-athletics.org

One of the most talented athletes of his generation, Jakub Ingebrigtsen is one of the next generation of European Athletes. Fearless, well trained, and determined, Filip will, someday soon, ascend to the top medal position on the global stages. I have spoken with his father (Dusseldorf WIT, 2019) and believe that the training focuses on callousing the brothers to world class shape and racing fitness. The level of confidence that this young man possesses is astounding, reminding me of the late American star, Steve Prefontaine.

IMG_2298.jpgMo Farah, London 2017, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Mo Farah is training for Tokyo 2021. He's not in Ethiopia, he's in London, in his home, enjoying his kids and his technical teadmill...

Wendy Sly was an Olympic silver medalist from the 1984 LA Olympic 3000 meters. The women's 3000 meters in LA was a race of some complication. The seven and one half laps of the race was a combination of technical running, roller derby, and sprinting like mad at the right time. Wendy Sly had trained for nearly a dozen years by the time LA came around. I never thought that she got her fair recognition.


In the U.S., we were then obsessed with Mary Decker Slaney. Mary had won the 1983 WC 3000m and 1,500m in long, mad drives to the finish. Mary Slaney had, at that time, every American record from 1,500m to 10,000m. The US crowd wanted to see an American medal from US star Mary Slaney. Nothing else would satiate the crowd. Yet, that was not to be that day.

wendy sly, au .jpgWendy Sly, LA 1984, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

In the women's 3000m final, there was Maricica Puica, Wendy Sly, Mary Slaney, Cindy Bremser, Lynn Williams, Zola Budd, among others. Zola Budd was a media darling, who had used her grandparents' British citizenship to compete for GBR. The 3,000 meters was that place where the 1,500m athlete and the long distance athletes would meet (remember the women's 10,000m was added at Olympics in 1988, women's 5000m in 1996).

The race was physical, so much that Zola Budd, Mary Slaney and Brigitte Kraus went down. Zola Budd finished, Slaney and Kraus did not. Why did happen? My belief was that the race was very close, and as Mary Slaney and Zola Budd tangled, the party was over.

In the wake of the turmoil, Wendy Sly kept her head, and kept the battle between Puica and Wendy Sly. In the media soap opera that was the LA Olympics, Wendy Sly took the silver medal by not loosing her cool in front of 80,000 fans. Yet, as she was not American Mary Slaney, it really did not get the ink it deserved.

After an amazing athletics career, Wendy Sly is now the publishing director of Athletics Weekly magazine.

We thank Wendy Sly for writing to Jeff Benjamin on how to train during the currrent plague.

Neil-Black-Dubai-training-camp-by-Getty-for-BA.jpgNeil Black, Dubai training camp (2019), photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

RunBlogRun Opines:

The news of Neil Black's death was the first text that I read when I woke up this morning. I could not believe it. Neil Black, the former Performance Director of UK Athletics, had died suddenly over the past weekend, per a release by UK Athletics.

I had a casual acquaintance with Neil, seeing him mostly at British events and global championships. He was always smiling and involved with athletes. It was quite obvious that the athletes loved him. His chatter with me was jovial and relaxed, indicative of a man who loved his profession.

The following is a thoughtful piece on Neil Black, by Stuart Weir.

Updated April 21, 2020

We recieved the following letter via Jeff Benjamin on 20 April 2020. It speaks of Coogans, a NY institution, closed on 17 March 2020. The NY Times posted a piece on the closing, noting that it was part of New York City that would not survive the modern plague. The New York Times titled it, "Coogans is Closing. This is the New York we are loosing." Please read it.

coogans letter .jpg

The following piece is by David Hunter, long time scribe for RunBlogRun. David penned this piece on December 16, 2013. It speaks of Peter Walsh, one of the triumviratre behind Coogans....please read it and know that Coogans was one of those positivesanctuaries of our sport.

Peter Walsh is one of the most energetic and positive people one would hope to meet. Walt Murphy and Larry Rawson, two of my mentors in this sport, introduced me to Peter at Coogans just a few years ago. What a place and what a wonderful person. Here is David Hunter's masterful piece on Peter and the magic that is Coogans.

millrose 105.jpg
Photo by Larry Eder, Millrose, year 105

The idea of Holmer Fartlek is this: callousing. Go out at a talking pace, just stay physically social distanced. Then, have a go. See what you can do. Push a five minute section, float, then push it again. Get to the point where you do not want to talk. Breathe hard for five minutes. And once you get back, cool down.

gettyimages-595211496-2048x2048.jpgBen Blankenship, photos by Getty Images / World Athletics

Fartlek is attributed to Gosta Holmer (1891-1983), the 1912 Olympic bronze medalist in decathlon, 8th in pentathlon, and 4th in 1920 Olympic decathlon. In the 1930s, while working with some modest Swedish athletes, Gosta Holmer developed the fartlek interval system, using faster than racing segments and recovery segments. Lots of freedom in this system, and some athletes thrive on this system. (My pbs from 800m to the marathon were set using primarily varied fartlek in my last years of racing.)

Tuesday, April 21, 2020 : warm up, 50 minute run, go out easy for 26 minutes, come back in 24 minutes, cooldown, (Holmer Fartlek)

Carles Lopes was one of the finest athletes of his generation. In 1976, he took the lead at just past 2,000 meters in the 10,000m Olympic fnal, and lead Lasse Viren in a break away, taking silver in the Montreal 10,000m. He did not make Moscow 1980, as he suffered from injuries.

His speciality was cross country, having taken 3 golds in the World Cross: 1978, 1984 and 1985. In 1977 and 1983, he took silver medals. This endurance helped him over 10,000m and the marathon.

1984_lopes.jpgCarles Lopes, 1984 LA Olympics, photo by Olympic.org

In 1984, prior to the LA Olympics, Lopes helped team mate Fernando Mamede take the WR in 27:13.81 with Lopes taking second in 27:17.48. The WR had been Henry Rono's magnifiscent 10,000m WR of 27:22.5, set in 1978.

Eight years later, at the ripe old age of 37, he became the oldest man to win an Olympic marathon, when he took the LA 1984 marathon in a huge upset. His 1984 Olympic win was his second marathon. In his first marathon, which he lost to Rob De Castella, he had consumed a nice bottle of red wine and an immense steak the night before-no carbo loading for Mr. Lopes. Lopes was second in Rotterrdam, by two seconds, in 2:08.39. Rotterdamr was his second attempt, as he had nearly finished the 1983 NYC Marathon, only to run into a spectator and not finish that race.

In 1985, in Rotterdam, Carles Lopes broke the WR by 53 seconds, with his 2:07:12, becoming the first man to break 2:08.

coach_conversations_71.png.jpgPhoto courtesy of Manhattan Athletics

Coach Matt Centrowitz Sr of Manhattan College Jaspers is putting together a Coaches Conversations on 24 April, featuring Friday, April 24 - Matt Centrowitz & Kerri Gallagher, Men's and Women's Cross Country, Track & Field. Check out the note from Matt below. Thanks to Jeff Benjamin, Senior writer for @runblogrun on Staten Island.

Today is April 20, 2020. It was the original day of the 2020 BAA Boston Marathon, until the coronavirus arrived, and then, the marathon moved until September 14, 2020.

The organizers asked the Boston marathon geeks to run at home, and the BAA will see them, hopefully, September 14, 2020.


image0-5.jpegJeff Benjamin and Amanda Eccleston, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Amanda Eccleston is one of those American athletes gifted with good speed and versatility. With elite PBs, from 2:02.14 at 800m, to 4:03.25 at 1,500m, 4:25.64 at the mile and 15:26.26 at the 5,000m, Amanda has the speed and endurance to be a player in US championships, both indoor and out.

Jeff Benjamin asked Amanda to provide some suggestions on training during the current plague.

IMG_3115.JPG1. The two runners I passed on my way to Iten. photo by Justin Lagat

IMG_20200419_092440.jpg2. Eiichiro Kamikawa of Japan who continues to train in Iten stops to check one of the famous routes used by Kenyan runners on their long runs. photo by Justin Lagat

This is our weekly check in from Kenya senior writer Justin Lagat, who we have been fortunate to have fill these blogs since 2013. His keen observations of his homeland, and his ability to give us a very personal view of Kenya, especially during this time of the current plague.

We thank Justin Lagat and wish him, his family and friends safety and good health...

1206433206.jpgMondo Duplantis, 2020 Muller Glasgow Indoor GP, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

Mondo Duplantis set two world indoor records this past indoor season, with 6.17m in Torun on 8 Feb and 6.18m on Feb 15 in Glasgow. Mondo, like most of the world, is having a tough time with the coronavirus pandemic. We wish him good health, safety and motivation.

BL_27290_2019082540907985_20190826112836.JPGJemme Reekie, GB 2019, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

1170121568.jpgJemma Reekie, GB 2019, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

RunBlogRun editor Larry Eder wrote the following intro:

One of the big revelations this season was Jemma Reekie. The training partner of Laura Muir, Jemma took British records in the 800m, 1,500m and mile indoors in 2020. Under the watchful eye of Andy Young, the fine Scottish coach who advises Laura Muir and Gabriella Stafford De Bues, Jemme Reekie has developed a wicked kick, but also, and perhaps, most important, the focus, confidence and long term approach that comes from seeing consistent development and the positive affirmations that progress provides.

Stuart Weir is one of our most important writers. Stuart posted 150 pieces in 2019, and his gentle observations allows you, the reader, to see behind the obvious. In this world of immediate gratification, and unsatiated social media frenzies, Stuart Weir has a theme in his writing: few good things in our sport or live arrive immediately. Great athletes are developed. An overrnight success if a bit of legerdemain.

Athletics is a primal need. Since our cousins wrote on cave walls with burnt wood, man and woman have jumped, thrown and ran. In those times, it was life and death. One might jump off one cliff to make another, or become a meal. Today, it is still a primal need. Perhaps, we will begin our sport once again in silent stadiums, with the fans at home, isolated.

One knows this, Stuart Weir will be writing about it, with a mask on, and physically social distanced. Athletics, in this time of our modern plague, where the uneducated question the suggestions of the men and women of science, and politicians endanger lives and the economy for votes, provides some solace.

We hope that the time of simple joys comes soon, that we can watch fine athletes jumping, throwing and running soon. We just know it will be different.

The truth is, this modern plague will take some time to dissapate, and this will try our souls. Being lonely is one thing, being broke is another, being dead is something else (still, at my advanced age, I may have come close, but still chose the alternative, life).

So, enjoy the Monday writings of Stuart Weir. Respect physical social distancing, Stay safe and isolate. This is a matter of life and death, no matter what your neighbor who flunked basic biology tells you. The novel coronavirus is not made up, it is not fake news, it is the modern plague.

Deep breaths, friends, and enjoy the long coming success of Jemma Reekie....

image0-4.jpegJeff Benjamin, Ken Popejoy, Jim Spivey, Mike Durkin, Craig Virgin, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Mike Durkin was a fine athlete in the 1970s. I recall him competing in the 1976 Olympic Games. Mike Durkin became a coach after his competitive days and advised Jim Spivey for several years.

Special thanks to MIke Durkin for his thoughts on training and communicating with Jeff Benjamin.

image0-6.jpegJeff Benjamin and Craig Engels, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Craig Engels is one of the most popular athletes on American athletics social media, with his gutty racing, sense of humor, 1970s mustache and classic mullet hair. Mr. Engels has serious wheels, and he took out Matthew Centrowitz last outdoor season at the 2019 USATF Outdoors in Des Moines, Iowa. Engels has run an 800m in 1:44.68, 1,500m in 3:34.04, and the Mile in 3:51.60. In 2019, Craig took the 2019 USATF Indoor title at the mile, and the 2019 USATF Outdoor title at the 1,500m. In 2020, Craig took 3rd at the USATF Indoor 1,500m final in Albequerque, New Mexico.

He is coached by Pete Julian and represented by Ray Flynn of Flynn Sports Management.

We thank Craig Engels for his time and comments to Jeff Benjamin on how to manage training in the current plague.

London 2017 Martin Bateman.JPGSally Pearson takes 100m hurdles in 2017 London WC, photo by Martin Bateman

Sally Pearson is one of the finest 100m hurdlers of all times. An Olympic gold medalist (2012), as well as gold medalist in the 100m hurdles in 2011 WC Daegu and 2017 WC London. She also has a pair of silver medals, one, an Olympic medal (2008) and one silver in 2013 WC Moscow. Sally also took a gold indoors, in Istanbul 2012 and then, a silver in Sopot 2014. In Commonwealth Games, Sally took gold in 2010 Delhi and 2014 Glasgow, plus a bronze for the 4x100m in 2006 Melbourne.

Sally Pearson has a PB of 12.28 over the 100m hurdles. She retired on August 5, 2019. This interview was done, for the most part, in April 2019.

Monday is a relaxed day of running. Follow the suggestions and stay healthy.

DSC00014.jpgAjee' Wilson takes the USATF indoor 800m, photo by Cortney White

Monday, 20 April 2020 : warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

Thomas-Röhler-Doha-2017-661x1024.jpgThomas Rohler, photo by Diamond League

Thomas Rohler is one of the finest javelin throwers of all times. A PB of 93.90m set in 2017, Thomas is the Rio Olympic gold medalist in 2016, and European champion in 2018 in Berlin. Thomas is just a class act. I enjoy getting to speak with him and his coach on the sport.

IMG_0740.jpgWayde Van Niekerk, London 2017, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Wayde Van Niekerk is the WR in the 400m, at 43.03. He has won two gold medals at the 400m in WC and one in the Rio Olympics. He is in rehab now after an injury playing a game of rugby. On his way back, Wayde has the desire, can he come back to past levels of excellence?

The men's shot put in Doha was one of the most exciting sporting events that I have witnessed. Five athlete went over the distance of the former World Championships.

IMG_1601.jpgJoe Kovacs, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Ryan Crouser lead early on with a 22.35m. Then, Tomas Walsh put the shot out to 22.90m, the 4th best throw ever!

With only 4 throws to go! Joe Kovacs throws 22.91m! Equal third best throw! One centimeter over Tomas Walsh.

Romani finishes 4th with 22.53m. Then, Crouser goes 22.90m! Amazing! No one had gone over 22.80m since 1990!

Kovacs takes gold, adds to his silver in 2017, gold in 2015, and silver in 2016 Rio.

What makes this presser special? The thrr medalist speak about the nature of competition. It is amazing!

Special thanks to Adam Johnson Eder, who filmed all of the 2019 WC pressers for RunBlogRun. Special thanks to Mike Deering for producing the podcasts.

DSC00083.jpgBryce Hoppel takes the 800m, photo by Cortney White

The second day and night of the 2020 Toyota USATF Indoor Champs, on Feb. 15, 2020, had some fun events to enjoy! The 1,500m events were a blast, as were the 60m sprints and 60m hurdles.

The Men's 1,500m was won by Josh Thompson and the women's 1,500m was won by Shelby Houlihan. Ajee' Wilson took the women's 800m and Bryce Hoppel took the men's 800m.

DSC00470.jpgJosh Thompson takes the 1,500m, photo by Cortney White

The championships always have their own stress. Add the altitude to this championships, and you have a challenging situation for the athletes.

DSC09992.jpgAjee' Wilson pushing the 800m, photo by Cortney White

Special Thanks to Mike Deering of the Shoe Addicts on producing the podcasts, he does an amazing job! Also thanks to Cortney White, a fine photographer who is helping us get a fine view of the USATF Indoor.

IMG_9217.jpgJustin Gatlin, London 2017, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Justin Gatlin is looking for one more Olympic medal. He had originally planned to race through Tokyo, so he has added another year. The good thing is that 2020 will not be tough on him, in terms of racing.

The 2020 Toyota USATF Indoor Championships was overr 2 days in February 2020. The meet was held in the intimate setting of Albuqueque, New Mexico, which seats about 2200 fans.

DSC09667.jpgPaul Chelimo takes the 3000m, photo by Cortney White

The meet was held on February 14 and 15, 2020. We covered the meet with two podcasts and hope that you enjoy them. This champs will be known as the last championships before the coronavirus pandemic changed everything.

The 3000m events kept us on our toes, as we were able to see Shelby Houlihan and Elle Purrier in a fine race. Paul Chelimo used a fast last 200m to cement his win. He told me in 2019 how much he just loved taking US championships.

DSC09334.jpgThe women's 3000m, photo by Cortney White

Special Thanks to Mike Deering of the Shoe Addicts on producing the podcasts, he does an amazing job! Also thanks to Cortney White, a fine photographer who is helping us get a fine view of the USATF Indoor.

DSC09480.jpgShelby Houlihan takes the 3000m! photo by Cortney White

IMG_1612.jpgTomas Walsh, London 2017, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Tomas Walsh is one of the finest shot putters in the world. He took the bronze in the Rio Olympics and followed up with gold in London 2017, and bronze in Doha WC 2019. On the indoor WC scene, Tomas took bronze in 2014 Sopot, gold in 2016 Portland and 2018 Birmingham. Walsh is a player in any event he competes.

This is how Tomas Walsh has dealt with the pandemic.

Today is about getting in a long run. Keep it relaxed, at seventy to seventy-five minutes. And keep the physcial social distancing, it is making a difference!

20200229 RUPP Galen2 kl.JPGGalen Rupp takes 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials, photo by Kirby Lee

Sunday, 19 April 2020: Long runs, 70-75 minutes

Saturday is a hill day. This is a moderate work out of hill repeats, so follow the plan and stay focused.

1206467898.jpgLaura Muir, Feb. 15, 2020, Muller Glasgow Indoor, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

Saturday, 18 April 2020: warm up, 45 minute run with six hill charges (at 2 minutes), cooldown

image0-2.jpegKen Popejoy and Jeff Benjamin, photo by Jeff Benjamin

image1.jpegKen Popejoy defeating Dave Wottle (1972 Olympic gold, 800m), Marty Liquori (1968 Olympics, 1971 Pan Am Champ), photo from Ken Popejoy

Ken Popejoy was one of the fine milers who competed in the 1970s. He took out many of the top athletes of his day. What fascinates me about Ken Popejoy was how he connects two generations of athletes. In high school, Ken ran 4:09.3 against a young Prefontaine. 22 years later, he ran 4:08.1 and 1:52.5!

At his prime, Ken competed and qualified in both the 800m and 1,500m in the 1972 Trials and was a finalist at 1,500m in the 1976 Trials. Ken Popejoy also coached with the iconic Al Carius, and then, worked with Mike Durkin to coach and advise Jim Spivey, an Olympic finalist and 4 time WC athlete.

Jeff Benjamin reached out to Ken Popejoy to discuss how to look at the current time, in terms of motivation and training.

image003.jpgWe love the Atlanta Track Club. They hosted the 2020 US Olympic Marathon Trials, which was a huge success. They host over two dozen events a year and have evolved the ATC and continued to build the prestige of the Atlanta Track Club and the AJC Peachtree Road Race. The ATC now has a fine new training site! We encourage you to use it!

Tips for COVID crowded hospitals


Editor's comments: We provided this in the spirit that it was supplied. Hospital staffs are doing heroic work. Listen to the professionals. We suggest using the ideas below to help ease communication. Most hospitals are shutting down any visits to COVID-19 patients. Listen. Stay calm. Communicate thoughtfully.

The more you know, the less anxiety you may feel. This is a good check list.


The NYRR is an example of a local running group behaving responsibly. NYC Metro is at the heart of the coronavirus battle lines. At this time, running is a personal activity and physical social distancing should be practiced in all activities. I sure hope people see this as our modern plague. This is not a joke.

04520u-1024x275.jpgThe Brooklyn Bridge and New York City, circa 1913, source: Library of Congress

Today is Friday. Enjoy your run. Take some time to think of the people who keep you safe : your parents, hospital staff, food store staffs, mail people, this is a scary time. Take the time to consider how interdependent we are.

DSC07893.jpgChris O'Hare, photo by Cortney Ware

Friday, April 17, 2020: warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

image0.jpegJeff Benjamin and Todd Williams, photo by Jeff Benjamin

It was in November of 1991 that I saw Todd Williams defeat Pat Porter in Franklin Park, in Boston, MA. His win at the 1991 US Championships preceeded his run in the World Cross Country. In his long career, Todd Williams ran 8:14.58 for 2 miles, 13:19.51 for 5000m and 27:31.34 for the 10,000m, as well as 2:11.17 for the marathon. A fine runner, Todd now focuses his energy on Run Safer, a company that he developed to empower women about safety issues.

Todd Williams was always a fine interview. We always enjoyed his candor, sense of humor and well, focus. We thank Todd for corresponding with Jeff Benjamin on training in the current era.

1_2733.jpgJulien Wanders, RAK Half Marathon, Feb 2020, photo by COLOMBO

Julien Wanders is European record holder at the half marathon (59:13, RAK, set in Feb 2019) and 10k in 27:13 (Jan. 12, 2020 in Valencia). He made these comments with EME News on his time in Iten.

image0-3.jpegJeff Benjamin and Jared Ward, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Jared Ward is one of America's finest marathoners. The BYU grad has run some fine tactical and fast marathons, with a modus operandi of going out conservatively, and finishing fast, taking many fine positions in events like Boston, NYC, and in the 2016 Olympic Trials. In Rio 2016, Jared finished sixth, in a fine PB of 2:11.30. Jared Ward's PB is 2:09.25, which was run at Boston Marathon in 2019.

Jared had a tough day in Atlanta, at the 2020 Olympic Trials, in 2:15.55 for 27th.

Today is a tempo day. The tempo run is a moderate workout that allows you to build endurance, focus and strength. Keep the physical social distancing.

DSC00435.jpgThe USATF Indoor 1,500m, men's Feb. 15, 2020, photo by Cortney White

Thursday, 16 April 2020: warm up, 15 minutes easy, tempo run, 20 minutes, at pace 30 seconds above your ave mile pace for 5k now. So, if you ran 18 minutes, you can run 20 minutes at 6;20 mile pace, this is not to exhaust you, but to build you. 15 minute cooldown.

animated-graphic-2019-nCoV.jpgCoronavirus, photo by Journalist Resource

Daniel Wanjiru responded on his Facebook site to the provisional suspension by Athletics Integrity Unit due to irregularities in his biological passport. The following came from his Facebook site:

espn.jpgDaniel Wanjiru wins London 2017, photo by London Marathon Media

Daniel Wanjiru-thumb-500xauto-34421.jpgDaniel Wanjiru, photo by RunBlogRun /London Marathon

Daniel Wanjiru has been provisionally suspended by the Athletics Integrity Unit. Daniel has won the Amsterdam marathon and was the surprise winner of the 2017 Virgin Money London marathon in a close battler with Kenenisa Bekele.

This day is April 15, 2020. On April 15, 2013, I sat in the Boston Marathon Media center, as I had since 1990. I had my media pass and finish line pass as well. I rarely went to finish lines. My hotel, the Charlesmark was ground zero for the Bombing. This column was written on May 7, 2017 from London, England, The city of Manchester had experienced a bombing and I was considering both.

93309625_10222707677102841_4403503675075461120_n.jpgJim Gerwick and Larry Eder, 14 April 2013, photo from Jim Gerwick

My thoughts and prayers are with all of the athletes, fans, first responders, and media who were in Boston, MA. I am thinking of Jefferson, the fine bartender at Charlesmark, who kept people safe after the bombing.

So, I have been working through my thoughts on the Boston marathon for some two years now. It was only after my walk in Manchester, England today that It started to gel.

Lots to put into perspective.
Thumbnail image for Desisa_LelisaFHH-BostonMar15.jpg
Lelisa Desisa wins Boston, April 2015, photo by PhotoRun.net

romani-07-19.jpgDarlan Romani, photo copyright by trackandfieldnews.com

Darlan Romani blew many fans minds with his 22.61m at the Nike Pre Classic at Stanford last June 30! It was awesome! He had broken the South American record three times at Stanford: 22.46m, 22.55m and then, BOOM, 22.61m!

Romani is a big man. Darlan stands 1.88m (6'2") and weighs 140kg (309 lbs). Watch him in the ring. Darlan Romani was the first Brazilian to make an Olympic final in the shot put since 1936 (Antonio Peiriera Lira). In the shot put in Rio, set two NRs with his throws of 20.94m in the qualifying round, and 21.02m in the final, where he took fifth.

The competition in Doha had Darlan in medal contention until the final throw by Joe Kovacs, who went 22.91m, pushing Crouser into second, 22.90m, and Walsh into bronze with 22.90m and Romani in 22.53m, in 4th. There had not been a throw over 22.80m since 1990.

Darlan Romani celebrated his 29th birthday on 9 April. Here's what EME News found:

tracktown.jpgHayward Field, the site of 2022 World Championships, art by Eugene Register-Guard

The Athletics Integrity Unit posted this release recently. Many athletes consider that this time will be the time that some will try and take advantage of the situation. The AIU consider that in this release.

Sandi Morris has medaled in every global championship since the World Indoors in 2016 in Portland. In Portland, Sandi Morris took silver in the World Indoor. That summer, in Rio, Sandi took her first Olympic medal, the silver medal, with Katerina Stefanidi taking gold. At the 2017 WC in London, Sandi took her first silver medla on the World Outdoor stage, with Stefanidi taking gold once again.

Sandi Morris took her first gold in a major championships in Birmingham, England, in March 2018. In the last WC, Sandi battled Anzelikha Siderova for the gold medal with Sandi Morris taking the silver medal.

With a PB of 5.00m (Sept 9, 2016) from the Van Damme Memorial, Sandi Morris iis, like all elite athletes, trying to find a way to train while stay safe in the current plague.

sandimorrisrvaultercom.jpgSandi Morris, photo by vaulter.com

Today is Wednesday, April 15, 2020. Enjoy the run, and keep it relaxed. Enjoy the time outside. Remember, most parks are closed, due to people not following social distancing. This is a physical thing. Now the CDC believes that the bottom of shoes may carry the virus. We suggest that you keep shoes outside on porch. Wash hands after the run too. Stay safe, isolate.

29313356_1379882982112776_2429393984070615040_o.jpgEdinburgh Cross Country, an amazing course, and event, photo by Great Run Company

Wednesday, April 15, 2020: warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

The ability to train has been severly curtailed. And many would ask, with a global pandemic and the potential for 100,000 to 1 million dying in U.S., should it be a priority?

The truth is this. Exercise gives you sanity, a mental break and continues your fitness. I am doing my best to walk 3 miles along the Rock River, practicing physcal social distancing.

This is Canadian athlete Andre De Grasse's daily regimin. We wish the WC and Olympic medalist the very best of luck....

hbao_andredegrasse_competition.jpgAndre De Grasse, photo by Olympics Canada

NNEthiopia20-025.jpgNorth East Ethiopia, photo by NN Running team

In this version of the NN Running weekly column, we get some updates on how training has changed in the pandemic.

image0-2.jpegCathy Schiro O'Brien and Jeff Benjamin, some years ago...by Jeff Benjamin

RunBlogRun opines: Cathy Schiro O'Brien is one of the most important athletes in American distance running history. This woman almost made the 1984 Olympic marathon team, she was there at 23 miles, before the sixteen year old faded to 9th place! Cathy Schiro had just run a high school and American Junior record of 2:34:24, which still, 36 years later, is the American junior record. Cathy had qualified for the 1984 Trials with a time of 2:45.07.

Cathy O'Brien made the 1988 Olympic team and the 1992 Olympic team. In 1988, O'Brien was 40th, and in 1992, she was 10th, the best American women's performace in the 1992 Olympic marathon!

Cathy was the world record holder at 10 miles (51:47) in 1989 at the Bobby Crim 10 miler.

In high school, Cathy competed in Foot Locker Cross Country all 4 years of high school. As a frosh, she was 19th in 17:51 (1981), as a soph, Cathy improved to 10th in 17:33.1 (1982), as a junior, she was 3rd in 17:25.4 and as a senior, Cathy Schiro won the FootLocker CC in 16:48.1 (1984)!

We thank Cathy for corresponding with Jeff Benjamin as Jeff keeps us entertained during this current plague.

This is a good run, go out at good pace and push it a bit on the way back, and see how you can handle it. Do not over do it and make sure that you are cooled down well.

DSC09334.jpgThe women's 3000m race, 2020 USATF Indoors, photo by Cortney White

Tuesday: warm up, 50 minute run, go out easy for 26 minutes, come back in 24 minutes, cooldown, (Holmer Fartlek)

animated-graphic-2019-nCoV.jpgCoronavirus COVID-19, from Journalist Resource

We thank EME News on daily updates (done by Steven Mills and Paul Halford with Alfons Juck) of how the virus is affecting the sport...

In Stuart Weir's column on April 6, 2020, Five Unmissable events, Stuart wrote about how much he loved the women's 800 meter events in Monaco in 2017 and 2018. Stuart did the following column on why he loved the events...

Caster_Semenya_-_Women_s_800m_-_Monaco_2017_13454_5e45d12213.jpg2017 Monaco DL women's 800 meters: Caster Semenya (RSA) set a Diamond League Record, World Lead and Meeting Record of 1:55.27 in the Women's 800m at the 2017 Herculis EBS in Monaco, photo by Philip Fitte for IAAF (copyright held by Philip Fitte).

Caster_Semenya_-_Women_s_800m_-_Monaco_2018_12275_5e45c4edac.jpgCaster Semenya (RSA) set a Meeting Record of 1:54.60 in the Women's 800m at the 2018 Herculis meeting in Monaco, photo by Philippe Fitte for IAAF (copyright held by Philippe Fitte)

29313356_1379882982112776_2429393984070615040_o.jpgEdinburgh Cross Country, Garrett Heath, photo from Facebook page of Garrett Heath

Garrett Heath is one of the finest distance runners in the U.S. A nine time All American while at Stanford, Garrett has PBs of 3:34.12 at 1,500m, 13:16.31 for 5000m and 27:56.11 at 10,000m. Garrett has a mile pb of 3:53.15. Danny Mackey, his coach at Brooks Beast once told me that Garrett's Vo2 max, which is huge, suggests that he will do well over 25 laps. Garrett grimaced at that.

We thank Garrett Heath for speaking with Jeff Benjamin on training in this difficult time.

gettyimages-590454684-2048x2048.jpgDerek Drouin, photo by Getty Images / World Athletics

Derek Drouin is focusing on competing in Tokyo 2021. His win in Rio was excitng, and culminated a series of medals since 2012: Bronze in London 2012. Derek then took bronze in the 2013 Moscow WC and gold in the 2014 Commonwealth Games. In Beijing, Derek Drouin took the gold in the Hj, and then, followed that up with a gold in the Rio Olympics.

Derek was hurt in 2017 and did not compete in London. He did get in a jump of 2.20m in February.

The following piece by EME News picked up a piece from weareunsinkable.com.

Martin Bateman 20JUL19_MB_0675.JPGDanielle Williams, 20 July 2019, photo by Martin Bateman

Danielle Williams is a fine hurdler from Jamaica. Danielle is also one of the finest hurdlers in the world. In 2015, Danielle took the gold medal at the 100m hurdles in Beijing. In the 2018 Commonwealth Games, Danielle took silver at the 100m hurdles, and in 2019, in Doha WC, Danielle Williams took the bronze medal in a very fast hurdle final.

Danielle Williams has a PB of 12.32. Stuart Weir spoke with Danielle Williams on her long and exciting career.

image2.jpegRunBlogRun opines: I first met Coach Bill Squires during summer of 1985, just afterRunner's World was sold. Kim Wrinke, Dan Ferrara (fellow RW staffers) and I slept on Coaches' floor just before Falmouth. Meeting Coach was a dream come true. The man is eccentric and brilliant, all at once. His sense of humor, his love of live, and his enthusiasm for coaching, his athletes, and his life are well, infectious in a non-Covid-19 manner.

Coach knows his stuff. His athletes, from Bill Rodgers to Greg Meyer, and all of the regular humans, have learned from this amazing man. Now at 87, Coach Squires should be recongnized as one of the wisest and finest coaches in American distance running history.

Thanks to Paul Clerici for getting coach to answer the questions from Jeff Benjamin, which is always a challenge

On easy days, you can keep your pace at one that you can speak at. Keep it relaxed and easy. Respect physical social distancing.

DSC09411(1).jpgThe women's 3000m, 2020 USATF Indoor Champs, photo by Cortney White

Monday: warm up, an easy 45 minutes, 6 x 150 m stride outs, cooldown

Enjoy the long Sunday run. Find a quiet place and just enjoy the quiet. Respect physical social distancing. This is a tough time, but the exercise can give you a mental break.

Steeplechase.jpgThis was an indoor steeplechase (no water pits :), in Lieven WIT, photo by Lieven

Sunday: Long runs, 85-90 minutes.

An easy day today, savor it.

SP021619-753964.JPGGuy Learmouth, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

Saturday, 11 April 2020: Easy 30 minutes, 6 x 150 m strideouts

image1.jpegJeff Benjamin and Ben Blankenship, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Ben Blankenship is a fine example of someone who actually pursues his dreams. Ben was a fine high school runner at Stillwater HS . Ben was the first Minnesotan to break four minutes for the mile in while at the University of Minnesota. He hurt his sacrum as a junior, and decided to call it quits.

Inspired watching the 2012 Olympics, as a friend competed, Ben began to run again, winning a 5k in 15:10, showing that he was healthy and fit. HIs agent, Steve Haas, convinced the OTC to take him on in 2013 and Ben's pursuit of the dream began once again.

In 2016, Ben made the Olympic team in the 1,500m, finishing 8th in the final. In 2018, Ben Blankenship used his finely honed skills, to take 5th in the World Indoor Champs 1,500m, in Birmingham, England.

HIs PBs are 3:34.26 at the 1,500m, 3:52.51 in the mile, and 7:38.08 for the 3000m.

Ben Blankenship reminds me of the character, Quentin Cassidy, in John Parker's iconic novel, Once a Runner: Ben is a man pursuing his dream, and challenging his limits.

We thank Ben Blankenship for writing back to Jeff Benjamin with his thoughts.

image0.jpegRenaldo Nehemiah, Jeff Benjamin and Micheal Carter, Sr. photo by Jeff Benjamin

Renaldo 'Skeets' Nehemiah is one of the finest 110m hurdlers in history. Having held 8 WRs in various hurdle distances, Renaldo was the first man under 13 seconds and his WR in 12.93 was, what he himself noted as less than ideal. His persona added to the sport, and his races with Greg Foster were exciting. I also enjoyed him competing for my football team, the San Francisco 49ers.

This editor (Larry Eder) has to admit that Renaldo is one of the agents and managers I miss most now that I am quarantined. His comments on the sport are focused, crisp and low on the bs meter, and he has helped me appreciate the absolute uniqueness of a winning mental attitude.

We thank Renaldo for his wise comments.

This is the second month of Spring, in the time of the coronavirus. This will be a lasting memory in your lives. Stay calm. When you feel anxious, take five, long, deep cleansing breaths through your mouth. Hold it, counting One Mississippi, two Mississipi, up to five, then, release. Then, five deep breaths through your nose, holrd it, five count, and release, it will help.

Do workout on own. Vary runs and shoes. If you need a new pair of shoes, order from local running store on line. Support the local economy.

Social distance. Enjoy the run. Savor the time outside. Remember, you are alive.

AP_720702040.jpgThree team mates, Frank Shorter, Jack Bacheler, Jeff Galloway, 10,000m 1972 US Olympic Trials, photo and copyright by Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Friday, April 10, 2020: Warm up, fun fartlek, 60 minutes, 3 minutes good effort, 3 minutes easy, times 10, cooldown.

IMG_5357.jpg2017 USA 4x400m team, photo by Mike Deering / The Shoe Addicts

Allyson Felix is hoping to make her fifth Olympics. NBC will be all over it, as will sponsors around the world. Felix has the tools to do it, but it requires a long build up, and focus, we wish Allyson Felix the best of luck!

38511393_251340568817565_7413183513618284544_n.jpgSam Prakel, photo by Paul Merca (copyright held by Paul Merca)

Sam Prakel is one of those young athletes that will surprise many one day. On the cusp of a big breakthrough, Sam ran a 3:50.94 mile in Boston in March 2019! Prakel was sixth in the US outdoor champs 1,500m in Des Moines last July 28. In Feb 2020, Sam was seventh in the 1,500m at the US champs in Albequerque, New Mexico.

Jeff Benjamin sent Sam some questions on training in the current era, and this is how Sam responded:

gettyimages-1178841962-612x612.jpgNiklas Kaul, photo by Getty Images / World Athletics

Niklas Kaul was the suprise winner of the Doha 2019 decathlon. His huge javelin throw gave him the win event win by 10 meters! And then, his 4:15 for the 1,500m gave him the win. Now, Niklas Kaul has his sites on Tokyo 2021!

jackb.jpgJack Bacheler and Frank Shorter, photo by Alchetron.com

(Updated 9 April 2020 with updates from Jack Bacheler)

Jack Bacheler is one of the most important American distance runners in the modern era. A two time Olympian, he was the major domo of the Florida Track Club. He influenced Frank Shorter, Jeff Galloway, Barry Brown, as an athlete, coach. It was Bacheler, who with Shorter and Galloway, went to Vail, Colorado, ran 160 mile weeks to get ready for the 1972 Olympic Trials and owned the 10,000m and marathon.

In the 1972, Jack Bacheler, Frank Shorter stood atop American distance running. Yes, Steve Prefontaine owned the 5000m, but Bacheler, Shorter and Jeff Galloway pushed themselves to amazing performances. Jack Bacheler was a giant of a man, who competed in the 1964 Olympic Trials for steeplechase (11/13) in only his third year of running.

Bacheler was a newbie to track & field, beginning in his senior year of high school, where he took 3rd in Michigan state high school meet in the mile. That got him a scholarship to Miami (Ohio) University. He got into running and broke the uni 3 mile record of Olympic 5000m gold medalist Bob Schul.

After college, Jack moved to the University of Florida, where he pursued his masters and PH.d. in entomology. His masters thesis was titled, The Biology of a Anthocorid Flower Bug. While the six foot five entomologist was doing his bug thing, he was also running 120 miles a week, with workouts like 3 sets of 8 times a 300 meters, with hard runs between each set. Jack Bacheler was a true Beastmaster. The guy got fit and ran 14:00.4 for 5000m in the LA Trials. Then, Jack went to South Lake Tahoe, and tied with Bob Day for the 5000m title in the second trials. He was on his way to Mexico, where he ran brilliantly in the 5000m heats and then, quite confident for the final, was unable to compete due getting dysentary.

Keep the day easy and keep the social distancing up. It is a tough time, but know that social distancing saves lives.

ub_3Dmol.jpg1939 marathon racer, handmade by Adi Dassler, photo by adidas communications

Thursday: Easy 50 minutes, 6 x 150m strideouts

Eugene 2022 Date News


tracktown.jpgHayward Field, art work by Eugene Register-Guard

After the recent announcement of the change of dates of the World Athletics Champs in Eugene from July 2021 to July 2022, there has been lots of support. EME News gathered the updates from key continental bodies as well as global federations.

EAA made a statement in support of changing Eugene 2021 to Eugene 2022 and the dates of 15-24 July 2022. The EAA has yet to postpone the Euro Champs in Paris 2020, but that will be evaluated once again on May 7-8, 2020. The changes in our sport are quite fluid, with updates on a near daily basis.

unnamed.jpgEuropean Athletics photo

EvanJager_7.jpgEvan Jager, photo by evanjager.com

Evan Jager, AR holder in steeplechase, and WC silver and Olympic bronze medalist, had some fine comments on the Qualification suspension. While I understand WA's decision, I am not sure that it corresponds to anything that is helpful to athletes. Jager knows about motivation.

His AR of 8:00.45, in Paris Areva DL in 2015, perhaps the most gut wrenching performance that I have ever seen, was mind blowing. I have the only time I have recorded the f word while watching a live event.

We will let Evan explain his thoughts:

The World Athletics announced this change today. The response has been quick and with some vitriol. Well meaning, not sure if WA can appreciate what the coronarvirus means to the athletes.

5bd5bb93-5fb0-4177-8876-06bab6e12e00.jpgTokyo Olympic stadium, photo by South China News

image0-14.jpegKate Grace and Jeff Benjamin, Rio 2016, photo by Jeff Benjamin

RunBlogRun notes: We have enjoyed watching Kate Grace compete since her tenure in high school at Marlborough High near LA. She won CIF division 4 XC as a senior, then went to Yale and continued to show her progression. Her time with Drew Wartenberg at NorCal Project was where she began to take off as a fine middle distance runner. As a member of the Bowerman TC, Kate Grace is under the watchful eyes of Jerry Schumacher, Pascal Dobert and Shalane Flanagan.

Her win at 2016 Olympic Trials 800m (1:59.10, 4 July 2016) got her a position on the 2016 US Olympic team. Now a member of the Bowerman TC, Kate has continued to up her game as a fine 800m and 1,500m. Last September 2019, I watched Kate win in Minsk, Belarus in 4:02.49 at Dinamo Stadium (an awesome stadium) in The MATCH, US vs Europe on 10 September.

Kate Grace has a tough finish, and her mental toughness plus that finish puts her in the battle for top positions in any race she enters.

Kate responded to Jeff Benjamin's questions on training in the time of coronavirus.

The RunCzech race series is one of the finest in Europe. The RunCzech folks are showing that one can juggle and move a series of events for the fall. If the fall season comes together, it will be fantastic sports events all fall! Stay Safe now, Isolate, so we can get over this current plague.

2020 RunCzech.jpg

unnamed.jpgHayward Field, art from World Athletics

The World Athletics juggled these championships with the Federations to make them work in 2022. Challenges will be for distance runners, multi eventers and race walkers, but it is a strong plan in a difficult time.

Hills? Well, you can use lots of things for hills. At Bellarmine, in San Jose, when we could not get to Quicksilver Park, Los Gatos Novitiate or Alum Rock, we did the over pass. I've run up manure piles (just held my breath), and driveways, but got it done.

Social distancing is now life and death. Do not fool around with this. No one is immune.

DSC00014.jpgAjee' Wilson, taking the 2020 US Indoor title at 800m, photo by Cortney White

Wednesday, 8 April 2020: Warm up, 60 minute run, with 8-9 hills of 2-3 minutes up, and same amount recovery, cooldown

69403_1653033327978_1270650_n.jpgThe members of Slap Central: Paul Merca, Larry Eder and Jim Gerwick, 2010 Chicago Marathon

Through the magic of Zoom video conferencing, paulmerca.blogspot.com is pleased to present the first of a series of video interviews with some of the influencers and athletes in the sport.

In this first episode, I'm joined by Larry Eder, the publisher of RunBlogRun.com, and Jim Gerweck, a former writer for Running Times magazine.

Larry has covered numerous Olympics and world championships in his career, while Jim has made a name for himself, particularly on the East Coast, not only as a writer, but as a coach (he coached 2019 world championships marathoner Carrie Dimoff in high school), and a race director and course measurer.

We talked about the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics, recapped the 2020 indoor season, the US Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta and the shoe controversy leading up to the race, and got some thoughts on a possible 2020 outdoor season, once the go ahead is given by the government agencies and medical experts.

If you have any questions, comments, concerns about the video content, please don't hesitate to click the envelope at the bottom of the post or in the comments section of the YouTube channel.

Here's the video:

Today is Tuesday. Your run time is yours. Wearing a mask will make your face warm, but you will be fine. Keep social distancing. Vary your surfaces, when you can.

DSC09957.jpgUSATF Indoor 400m, photo by Cortrney White

Tuesday, 7 April 2020: Easy 50 minutes, 6 x 150 m strideouts

image0-13.jpegA photo with Steve Scott, photo from 1994 Staten Island AC Dinner

DAIKTAhUIAA6qH7.jpgSteve Scott, Cover of Sports Illustrated, March 1981

Steve Scott is one of the finest milers in American track & field and also in Global Athletics. Scott has run 136 sub four minute miles. Steve made the US Olympic teams in 1980, 1984 and 1988. In 1983, Steve Scott took the silver medal in the 1,500m, with Steve Cram taking the gold.

Steve Scott set three records for the mile, the final, 3:47. 69 (July 7, 1982), which was the American record until Alan Webb ran 3:46.91, twenty-six years later. His longest AR was the Indoor 2000m, for which he ran 4:58.6, which he held for 33 years, until Bernard Lagat broke it 33 years later, with his 4:54.74 on Feb. 15, 2014.

Steve Scott was one of the fine milers from the Golden Age (1976-1988), where many of us waited each day during the summer for the mile results, with Seb Coe, Steve Ovett, Steve Scott, Ray Flynn, Eammon Coglan, Craig Masback, Thomas Wessinghage and the immortal John Walker! Steve Scott raced alot (up to 50 races a year), from 800m to 5000m, but mostly miles and 1,500m.

Steve Scott sent the following response to Jeff Benjamin:

David Storl is one of the finest shot putters of his generation. Two golds in World Champs, one Olympic silver medal and 3 golds and a bronze at the European Outdoors, Storl has been a star in the shot put wars.

Storl.jpgDavid Storl, photo by European-Athletics.org

Stuart Weir took the chance of naming his five unmissable events, and we have them below. Stuart makes some fine suggestions, so I will have to respond with mine.

Stuart's list is quite impressive.

Doha 2019 (1).JPGShelly Ann Fraser-Pryce, photo by Getty Images / World Athletics

image0-12.jpegJeff Benjamin and Courtney Frerichs, photo by Jeff Benjamin

This blogger remembers being in London when Emma Coburn and Courtney Frerichs went gold and silver in the 2017 World Champs. It was amazing exciting, and among our readers, it is the second biggest Instagram photo of all times (second and third, about 40,000 on one, and 38,000 on another).

We thank Courtney Frerichs ( AR of 9:00.25) for her thoughts and words!

nicola mcdermott.jpgNicola McDermott, photo by You Tube

Stuart Weir wrote this piece on the fine Australian High Jumper, Nicola McDermott. He will be providing us two columns a week during this time of challenge.

2020-03-30-tokyo-thumbnail-02.jpgTokyo 2021, photo by IOC.org

Justin Lagat just sent this piece from Kenya on his view of the Olympic postponement, and the positive lessons from this time of quarantine. Justin Lagat has written for us over seven years. His thoughtul observations, and access to the fine athletes in his country have helped us appreciate the absolute quality of Kenyan athletics.

Running in the time of the coronavirus...

Running builds your immune system, or, it can tear it down.

A daily plan also builds your immune system and and keeps you focused and content.

If you can not keep up with the schedule, then, my suggesiton is 50-60 minutes most days and 30 minutes when tired. Try Yogo on TV, and kettle bells work well. Core training is also key. Walking is a good idea as well.

1206442709.jpgRonnie Baker, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

Enjoy the sense of speed today.

Monday, A sense of speed, 6 April 2020: warm up, go to a track, run 3 miles, jog turns, sprint straights OR, warm up, 30 minute run, stride 30 seconds, jog 90 seconds, times 15, cooldown

Today is a 85-90 minute run, and you might have to keep close to follow local Quarantine rules. I have done 30 kilometer running 18 times a 2k loop, plus a 22 mile run going back and forth on a one mile road, and also ran six hours on a seven meter lap, (a zen thing, will tell that story another time).

image0-3.jpegSifan Hassan, Shannon Rowbury, 2019 season, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Sunday, 5 April 2020: Long runs, 85-90 minutes.

mo farah.jpgMo Farah, photo by Watch Athletics (copyright)

Mo Farah is a global superstar. He is looking at the track again, after having called it quits in 2017 on the track. Now, with Tokyo moved to 2021, Mo Farah has the time to get into real racing shape.

belger.jpgMark Belger, photo by Villanovablogspot.com

Mark Belger is one of those iconic names in American Athletics. His indoor races were legendaryrr, and his time at Villanova had him racing up to 4 times a weekend, and his 800m races (won TAC title in 1983) were legendary. Mark was 4th in the 1976 Olympic Trials, winning an NCAA title two years later.

Jeff Benjamin spoke to the fast finishing Villanova alum on training in the modern era, with the COVID-19.

The final event of the 2020 World Athletics Indoor Tour was in Madrid on 21 February. The schedule was tight, and the events were exciting. Justyna Swiety Ersetic took the 400m in 51.93. Gudaf Tsegay won the 1,500m in a tight race, winning 4:04.66. The best event of the night was the 60m hurdles, as Christina Clemons won in 7.82. Nia Ali was second in 7.88. Tereresa Errandonea of Spain took third in 8.00.

The big event of the nght was triple jump. Yulimar Rojas set a new WR in 15.43m! Rojas had a short indoor season, having leaped 15.41m just a week before.

The small, but boisterous crowd at the International Meeting de Madrid enjoyed the meet, and we hope to be there in 2021.

Special thanks to Mike Deering on his production of the podcast.

3000m H_Adel MECHAAL_4098_resultado.jpgAdel Mechaal, photo by WiT Madrid

gettyimages-1178841962-612x612.jpgNiklaus Kaul, 2019 gold medalist, Doha, photo by Getty Images / World Athletics

Niklaus Kaul won the decathlon at the Doha WC in October 2019. His win was exciting as he began day 2 in 11th place at 4,164 points On day 1, Niklaus Kaul performed well: 11.27 for 100m, 801 pts., 20th place, 7.19m for LJ, 859 pts., 19th place, 15.10m for 796 pts., 16th place, 2.02m HJ, 822 pts., 12th place, and at end of day 1, a 48.48 for 400m, put Niklaus Kaul in 11th, with 886 pts for 4,164 pts.

On day 2, the battle continued. 14.64 for 100m hurdles, 896 pts, staying in 11th place. Niklaus won the discus, with 49.20m, 854 pts, moving Kaul to 9th place. A strong PV with 5.00m, for 910 points, moving him to 6th. Then, a huge 79.05 m javelin throw, which put Niklaus Kaul in bronze medal position in 9th event, with 1,028 points!

Niklaus Kaul showed his distance power, with his exciting 4:15.70 for the 1,500m, taking his third win in ten events, Niklaus Kaul took the gold in a PB of 8,691 points with Maicel Uibo, Estonia, silver, 8604 PB. In bronze, 8,529 points, for Damian Warner of Canada.

The presser for the decathlon was fantastic. As Niklaus Kaul enjoyed his win, he was asked who is idol was. Klaus smiled and pointed to the back of the room. Seated in the back was Ashton Eaton (WR holder) and Brianna Thiesen Eaton (silver medalist, Rio).

The following excerpt, from EME News, is about Niklaus Kaul's thoughts on the postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

1206455954.jpgRonnie Baker takes the 60m, photo by Getty Images / British Athleticsr

The Madrid World Indoor Tour was held on 21 February 2020, just weeks before all hell broke loose in the world. The faciity is a intimate one, with about 2,200 seats. Last year, when I attended, the meet got exciting, and the fans loved the hurdles, and the jumps. Ronnie Baker ran a fine 6.44 to show that his fitness is back. In the men's 800m, Collins Kipruto won in 1.46.09 over Adam Kszczot. Juan Miguel Echevarria leaped 8.41m in the LJ and Hughes Zango won the TJ in 17.31m.

Special thanks to Mike Deering of The Shoe Addicts, who produced this podcast.

1206432631.jpgMondo Duplantis, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

1206433206.jpgMondo Duplantis, Muller GP Glasgow, photo by Getty Images / British Athletics

In one week, Mondo Duplantis broke the World record indoors for the pole vault. On Feb 8, in Torun, Poland, Mondo cleared 6.17m on his sixth attempt of the competition. On Feb 15, in Glasgow, Mondo cleared 6.18m to set a second WR indoor in one week. Mondo has taken his bib from Torun and offered it up to auction, for a timely cause.

image0-11.jpegElle Purrier, Liane Farber, Mark Coogan, Katrina Coogan, Jeff Benjamin, photo by Larry Eder, Statens Island 2019

image1-4.jpegJeff Benjamin, Elle Purrier, Mark Coogan, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Mark Coogan has used his experience as a fine American distance runner, (two time Olympic team member at the marathon and the Pan Am silver medalist in 1995 at the marathon) and moved that enthusiasm into coaching. He now coaches Team NB Boston. Jeff Benjamin corresponded with Mark on his suggestions for training at this time.

hbao_andredegrasse_competition.jpgAndre De Grasse, photo by TeamCanada.ca

Andre De Grasse came on the scene in 2015, with his 100m bronze and his 4x100m bronze for Canada in Beijing. Rio 2016 was insane! First, Andre De Grasse took the 100m bronze in Rio in a PB of 9.91. Andre became first Canadian to medal in 100m since 1996 and the iconic Donavan Bailey. Then, he channeled Percy Williams, the last Canadian to medal at 200m in the Olympics, way back in 1928, when De Grasse took the silver medal in the 200m in Rio. In the semi finals, Andre De Grasse ran a Canadian NR of 19.80. His team in the 4x100m took the bronze in Rio, in NR of 37.64, breaking the NR of the 1996 gold medal winning Canadian team with Bruny Surin and Donavan Bailey.

The world was in front of Andre De Grasse.

In 2017, Andre ran 9.69 for the 100m, at the Stockholm Diamond League, and looked poised to take Usain Bolt on in London. De Grasse injured his hamstring and had to pull out of both the 100m and 200m in London.

In 2018, De Grasse was put on the Team Canada team for the Commonwealth Games, but, again injuries prevailed.

2019 opened slow, but Andre De Grasse built to Doha, and took the 100m in the bronze, behind Christian Coleman and Justin Gatlin. It was his first WC medal since 2015! His silver medal at 200m, behind Noah Lyles, was first Canadian medal since Atlee Mahorn, way back in 1991.

And now 2020 beacons..who knew about how COVID-19 would affect the world?

5bd5bb93-5fb0-4177-8876-06bab6e12e00.jpgEuropean Athletics

This is Saturday, 4 April 2020, and today you have a light run, and stride outs. Keep the run easy, and stay focused. Keep the social distancing on and do not run with a group. Every action has a consequence.

Saturday, 4 April 2020: Easy 30 minutes, 6 x 150 m strideouts

CDC_2019-nCoV_Laboratory_Test_Kit-720x480.jpgCoronavirus tests, photo by Journalists Resource

This is how the global sport was affected by COVID-19 Pandemic today, on 3 April 2020.

1582451717.jpgMondo Duplantis, Renaud Lavillenie, Sam Kendricks, photo by SVT Nyheter

Renaud Lavillenie is one of our favorite athletes. Renaud vaults with emotion and a genuine love of his event. The French superstar is incredibly competitive, and he has cleared 5.80m over 150 times.

Renaud Lavillenie broke Sergei Bubka's 6.15m WR ( set in Donetsk, Ukraine, on 21 February 1993), on 15 February 2014, in the exact same meet and exact same arena as Mr. Bubka. @airlavillenie then attempted 6.21m, and missed, gashing his foot, and requiring several stitches. He missed the end of the indoor season, but we saw him outdoors in 2014, and each season since then.

Renaud is using creative ways to keep himself entertained.

We show two below, after showing Renauds voting reminder for @airlavillenie:

angelicabny-jpg.jpgAngelica Bengtsson, photo by Teller report (copyright)

Angelica Benrgtsson is the Swedish NR holder in the pole vault, 2 time European Indoor Champs bronze, 1 time European Outdoor Champs bronze, and two time Olympian. She is one of the most popular athletes in Sweden.

image0-8.jpegAisha Praught Leer, Jeff Benjamin, Will Leer, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Aisha Praught Leer, 2018 Commonwealth Games and Will Leer, now Coach, former US champion, provided some fine ideas on how to deal with training in the current age.

DephLtZUcAAMpDw.jpgRyan Crouser, May 2019, Track & Field News, courtesy of trackandfieldnews.com

This was pleasant news to know that Ryan Crouser, Rio Gold medalist, WC silver medalist, is thinking he has 3 more Olympics and 5 world Champs! More shot put rivalries! Is this a great world or what?

coachtmahon.jpgCoach Terrance Mahon, photo by the Shoe Addicts

Terrance Mahon is one of the finest coaches in our sport. Having worked with fine coaches such as Bob Larsen and Joe Vigial, Terrance was the original coach for the adidas sponsored BAA elite club. He now coaches the adidas sponsored Golden Coast Track Club. Terrance has always supported the disseminatrion of good training information. We appreciate his time, and candor.

2020-03-30-tokyo-thumbnail-02.jpgTokyo, photo by Getty Images / IOC

The amount of media frenzy should not surprise on Tokyo 2020 moving to Tokyo 2021. Now, mediar is asking what if coronavirus goes into 2021? The questioning, while understandable, is silly. First and foremost, we must get over this virurs, which is larger than many of us may appreciate. The only way to protect you and your family: Stay home until 30 April . Wash 20 seconds. Social distance Always. Be patient. Watch netflix.

89933597_10218868315116267_4201582547932545024_o.jpgHayward Field, Eugene, Oregon, April 2020

90337573_10218868313876236_6269760823107780608_o.jpgHayward Field, Eugene, Oregon, April 2020

90397366_10218868315476276_2673185446007144448_o.jpgHayward Field, Eugene, Orego, April 2020

rRobert Johnson at Hayward Field v.2.jpgCoach Robert Johnson, photo by Runnerspace

The idea of fartlek is perfect now. I have to admit, in college, most of my tough sessions were solitary. I only did a long run, track day each week with team mates. The nature of speed play gave me much solace and confidence. The 3 minutes on, 3 minutes easy was a good workout. I also loved a workout where I ran 40 tmes the distance from first base to third base, just opening up my stride and getting up a good sweat. Be careful with social distancing.


Litchfield 1985: Bob Hodge, Andy Ronan, photo courtesy of Bob Hodge

Friday: Warm up, fun fartlek, 60 minutes, 3 minutes good effort, 3 minutes easy, times 10, cooldown.

image5.jpegBob Hodge and Bill Rodgers, Litchfield 1977, photo by Mac Kianon

image3.jpegBob Hodge, Randy Thomas, Vin Fleming, Litchfield 1980

image6.jpegAt Litchfield's "The Village Resturaunt"
Falmouth's Russ Pelletier , Jeff Benjamin , Mary Novajasky Hawkins, Bobby Hodge

Jeff Benjamin just sent this piece by Bobby Hodge, one of my favorite athletes of all times. Bob Hodge is special because, he kept his training consistent, and showed what can happen when a fine athlete believes in one self. At the end of the day, Bob Hodge is a class act.

image0-6.jpegJeff Benjamin and Frank Shorter, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Frank Shorter does not get the respect that is due him. In 1972, Frank Shorter won the gold medal in Munich, sixty four years after the last American won the Olympic marathon (Thomas Hicks, 1904, 1908). In 1976, he took the silver, in a race against Waldemar Cierpinksi, who had been train to run in Shorter's body space and break him at his mental game.

The late John Jerome said it best of Frank Shorter in Mariah Magazine (now Outside) in 1978, " by putting 26 five minute miles, one after another, in Munich, Frank Shorter invented running...".

Shorter got altitude training before most. He could race from 2 miles to 10,000m, with the best. His workouts were, well, insane.

Jeff Benjamin sent this piece from Frank Shorter, one of America's finest.

Mike Fanelli is one of those special people who makes our sport of athletics amazing. Mike was a fine runner, and a life long runner at that. He has one of the finest museums of track & field in the world, and his ability to communicate his enthusaism of the sport gives thousands everyday a view into the sport that so few appreciate. Just follow Mike Fanelli on Facebook. His daily commentary on the history of our sport should be read by all.

I have know Mike since 1978-1979. I have known him as athlete, elite athlete coordinator, running brand manager. He is one of those amazing friends who keeps the relationship alive.

Please enjoy this column from Mike Fanelli.

colondmr.jpgTony Colon takes the DMR, photo from Mike Fanelli Track Garage

Today, please keep your distance when you run. Running in a group could hurt one of your teammates or their families. This is serious stuff! At seventeen you don't understand people can die. A friend of mine got heart illness and died when I was seventeen. Please take this seriously.

DSC09480.jpgShelby Houlihan, photo by Cortney White

Thursday, 2 April 2020: Easy 50 minutes, 6 x 150m strideouts

Eliud Kipchoge_GQ0420.jpgShirt, $1,850, by Hermès / Pants, $5,200, and shoes, $980, by Gucci / Socks, $37, by Bresciani / Sunglasses, $895, by Jacques Marie Mage

The other day, Ashlee Bobb, Senior Communications Manager at GQ, sent me this amazing piece on Eliud Kipchoge. Knox Robinson, a fine writer, did justice to the zen Master of the Marathon, giving us a view into the training camps, and Kipchoge's particular talents, world class leg speed, an ability to handle lots of mileage consistently, and the ability to focus on the most challenging distance in athletics.

Enjoy the article and Eliud Kipchoge doing the fashionista thing.

Mille Wolde is the 2000 Sydney gold medalist in the 5000m. He now lives in Metro NYC and is a fine coach. Jeff Benjamin reached out to Mille in this time of challenge.

image0-thumb-500xauto-50656.jpgOlympic Gold Medalist Mille Wolde (Left) with the members of the Holy Child HS XC Team At Van Cortlandt Park, photo by Jeff Benjamin

image2-thumb-500xauto-50659.jpgMille Wolde takes 5000m gold in Sydney, photo by Getty Images / World Athletics

image1-thumb-500xauto-50653.jpgJeff Benjamin, Mille Wolde, photo by Jeff Benjamin

IMG_1751.JPGTraining alone, photo by Justin Lagat

Our friend, Justin Lagat, is also the senior writer for @runblogrun in Kenya. Justin gives us a revealing view of Kenyan athletics each week, and now is a unique time. The age of the coronavirus is a global phenomenon, and Justin provides us with a view into the challenges in his homeland.

image0-5.jpegJeff Benjamin with Galen Rupp, (2018), photo by Jeff Benjamin

RunBlogRun opines: "Galen Rupp is the finest long distance runner of his generation of the U.S. I have observed this fine athlete since he was about sixteen and I watched him take second in an Jr Champ 5000m. His 10,000m silver in 2012 was dramatic and his move to the marathon has shown his complexity as an athlete.

His 2020 win in the Trials was superb. He did not make a bad move. This piece was sent by Jeff Benjamin who has spoken with Galen many times."

NNMediaWeek20-583.jpgPhilemon Kacheran, photo by NN Running Team

This is a hill day. Please train only with someone you are always with, keep social distancing. No more than 2 people. This is very serious. If authorities sees groups training, they could shut down parks. Social distancing is key.


Jake Wightman, photo by British Athletics

Wednesday, April 1, 2020: Warm up, 60 minute run, with 8-9 hills of 2-3 minutes up, and same amount recovery, cooldown

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