Your Running News Roundup

Posted by Filed Under: News and Opinion

The Olympic Games are five months away, so we are seeing more and more articles on athletes and their training. Sports Illustrated recently surveyed the cities and towns where U.S. athletes train. One of the spots they chose was Mammoth Lakes, California, home to U.S. marathon hopefuls Deena Kastor and Ryan Hall. Don’t look for a world record in the marathon to be set in Beijing; it’s just too hot, dusty and polluted. It’s so bad that world record holder Haile Gebrselassie announced he was pulling out of the marathon to focus on the 10,000 meters. USA Today notes how athletes’ preparations for the games go way beyond training. The New York Times profiles Dallas Robinson, who quit his $100,000 a year job to train as a sprinter. If that weren’t surprising enough, consider this: he’s 6′ 4″ and weighs 225, built more like a running back than sprinter. He even has a video on YouTube. Finally, the San Jose Mercury News checks in with Alicia Shay, as she works to qualify for the Olympics in the 10,000 meters.

This Week’s Must-Read

NPR investigated why some people are able to meet goals they set for themselves while others can’t. Loss aversion seems to play a role. When people faced the prospect of losing something (e.g., money) because they failed to meet a goal (e.g., lose weight, stop smoking), they were more inclined to work harder. Two academics created, a website designed to help people meet their goals by making them put up their money. If users fail to meet the challenge, their money goes to charity or to a designated person. One of the communities on the website: run a marathon.


The New York Times takes on an old question: does lifting weights make you a better athlete? Deena Kastor and Ryan Hall lift—should you? You may also want to check out this point-counterpoint piece from the October 2006 Running Times. The Ottawa Sun examined how high tech gear has made it into the mainstream. Even recreational athletes are equipped with GPS watches, heart rate monitors. The article ends with a keen observation: look how well Kenyan runners have done without all that stuff.

A Great American Miler

The San Diego Hall of Champions recently inducted four new members into its ranks. One of them was Steve Scott, the great American middle distance runner. Over an impressive career, Scott racked up 136 sub-four minute miles, more than any other runner. He also held the American record for the mile for 25 years. You can hear him recount his achievements here.

Quick Hits

The Times of London follows two novice runners as they prepare for the London Marathon on April 13. The Washington Post had a great feature on selecting running shoes. It explains the basic terminology and dissects the Gel-Kinsei to explain the different parts. The Los Angeles Times profiled five runners before the March 2 Los Angeles Marathon, then checked back with them after the race to see how they fared. The Toronto Star looks at how women over 50 work to stay fit. The Honolulu Marathon acknowledged that it would not be able to provide “completely accurate” times for last December’s race because of problems with the timing system. Officials reviewed seven hours of video tape in an effort to provide times to each runner. Business Week goes inside Asics’s efforts to take on the top companies in the athletic shoe business.

  1. bryan on March 12th at 1:17 am

    I think Gebrselassie opting not to run is a good decision for him and for Ryan Hall. Gebrselassie gets to go for his last medal in the 10k and avoid risking his career, and Hall loses his biggest competition. He’ll have plenty more, though…

    bryan’s last blog post..On making the right choice

  2. Mom On The Run on March 12th at 1:35 am

    Great article! I’m headed off now to try out

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  4. roadrunner on March 13th at 2:59 am

    the stickk thing is very neat…

    Most people don’t do anything unless they are face with “immediate painful consequences”
    For us, its losing face and bragging rights with club mates.

    My kids don’t tidy their toys up UNLESS I threaten to get a black bag and take them to the dump…

    roadrunner’s last blog post..Bike riding for runners