Alright, race fans. Ready for another installment of Chicory’s handy-dandy race previews? Next up is NYC! The five-borough jaunt is welcoming back all of last year’s champions and the elite field includes 11 former New York City Marathon champions, 13 Olympians and 19 Paralympians, and 14 past Abbott World Marathon Majors race champions. And, Pimento! Read more >>
Crisp air, cooler temps … it finally feels like marathon season! The Chicago Marathon is October 13 and more than 40,000 runners — including our own Angelica! — will wind through 29 Windy City neighborhoods led by some of America’s top female marathoners.
The elite women’s field features five women with PRs under 2:25, led by 2018 Bank of America Chicago Marathon and 2019 London Marathon champion Brigid Kosgei (2:18:20 PR/Kenya).
But the next-fastest PR in the field belongs to Jordan Hasay, who finished third at Chicago in 2017 with a 2:20:57. She’s actually finished third in all three of her marathons — including Boston 2017 and Boston 2019. She holds the American record for fastest marathon debut, but after her two 2017 marathons, she missed her next two planned marathons with repeated fractures in her left heel. Hasay ran 1:12:35 at Rock ’n Roll Philly in mid-September and posted on Instagram that she was “really excited” about the effort while in the midst of heavy mileage.
Three professional runners recently spoke out against Nike for the way it treated them during and after their respective pregnancies: Alysia Montaño, Allyson Felix, and Kara Goucher. If you’ve followed these stories, you may be wondering how an international corporation like Nike can get away with these seemingly obvious cases of pregnancy discrimination. I’ve been clerking for a Plaintiff’s employment law firm for over a year, and I’ve done a decent amount of research on Title VII pregnancy discrimination claims. I’m going to break each legal option down for our readers, but please know that I am not an attorney at this time, and this post does not constitute legal advice. If you feel that you are being discriminated against for any reason, please consult an employment attorney.
The main issue surrounding pregnancy is the amount of time that women need to take off work for childbirth and recovery, as well as bonding with their newborns. While pregnancy-related illnesses, childbirth, recovery, and infant-caretaking are very separate phenomena, they are often lumped into one category for legal purposes: maternity leave. Generally, there are three basic avenues for women seeking legal protection during pregnancy. Those include Title VII claims, Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) claims, and state anti-discrimination laws. Pregnant employees can usually rely on these avenues when their employers do not have an internal maternity leave policy.
Wrapped up in a compact 5’3 package, Samantha Palmer is a a big presence. She’s a whirlwind of positive energy that blends Midwestern nice with Southern charming to make a flavor all her own. I was lucky enough to meet with her before the USA 10K championship race and got to experience firsthand her excitement bubbling over, because for the first time in many years she would be racing with her sister. Not to mention, it was an excuse for them to come back to New York City together. “We had such a great time when we were here [last November]! And I just love New York Road Runners.”
Not only does NYRR operate the New York City Marathon, they are also a year-round organizer of near-weekly races, have impactful youth programs and activate local runners in community organization, volunteerism and fundraising for charity. Putting on a great event that runs smooth is their specialty, and for elite runners that makes everything simple. It also, as Samantha pointed out, affords them the ability to seed their events with excellent purses and that attract excellent fields.
That was especially true for this race. Read more >>
I never met you, but I am braver because of you.
I first started following you years ago. I thought it was incredible that there was a professional runner right here in the Twin Cities, training in the same places I did, even running the same events. I remember being at the fieldhouse for my track practice and seeing you training there. I wanted to say hi, but didn’t want to interrupt your workout—you were so freaking fast!
When you shared that you had been diagnosed with cancer in your liver, I learned more about your story. That you became a professional runner in spite of your earlier fights with cancer amazed me.
When my team and I cheered you on at the Twin Cities 1 Mile, it was extra special for us to watch you run. Our coach had been diagnosed with kidney cancer, and it meant so much to us that you were fighting hard and living your life to the fullest despite having cancer for the fourth time in eight years. I believed in the future I’d be cheering for you in the Olympics, where you would show not just the Twin Cities but the whole world that a cancer diagnosis is not the end.
But cancer is merciless. When I heard that you had been moved to comfort care and would lose this race against time, my heart ached for you and your stolen future. You were so strong, so inspirational, so tough. It just seems wholly unfair that you’d never get to have the career and the life you deserved.
Friends of mine who knew you and your husband have been sharing stories and prayers on social media; the common denominator is that their lives have all been beautifully touched by you. The Twin Cities running community would not be the same without you. Your legacy will live on here, and throughout the world, forever.
Even though I never met you I feel so lucky to have trained on the same track as you did, and to have run alongside the Mississippi River where you ran. I remember reading about you running again after chemotherapy and I was amazed that you were able to persevere.
Honestly, I can’t say it better than you did: “Being brave, for me, means not giving up on the things that make me feel alive.”
The Brave Like Gabe Foundation raises money for cancer research, but also inspires us all to be more like you, working tirelessly for the world we want to live in. Your story is being shared worldwide by runners and non runners alike, touching all the people whose lives have been changed by cancer. And you did show the world that a cancer diagnosis is not the end. You set an example for those who are scared and confused by their own diagnosis and showed them they can continue to live their dreams, continue to live their life, and do the things that make them happy.
With much love and gratitude,
If you don’t know about the Gate River Run 15k, it’s a wonderful event in Jacksonville, Florida that is also the USATF 15k National Championship. In March I was given the opportunity to race Gate as part of the elite women’s field. Having never raced as an “elite”—and believe me, I am using that term very loosely—I was both excited and a little apprehensive about the whole experience.
When race week rolled around, I was SO. EXCITED. I really felt like a kid not-so-patiently awaiting the arrival of Christmas morning. I knew I was in good shape and I was very interested to get an actual gauge of my current fitness level.
At first I didn’t really get what it meant for our sport or why they would change it, but discussing it with some of the other Saltines helped me understand the complexity and significance of the new qualification process. Now that I get it, I’m excited to share what I’ve learned with you.
For the purpose of this discussion, we will be focusing on the women’s marathon, but the impacts will certainly be felt in the men’s field and across the sport, and if you’re interested in, say, the 10k, or the 400m the same basic principles will apply, but the qualifying times and page numbers will be different.
Now! On to the show:
The New Olympic Standard in Words You Can Understand 💁
Pittsburgh will host the USATF Half Marathon Championships on Sunday — following the city’s 2019 DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon and UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon on Saturday. This is the second straight year for the event to be held in the City of Bridges, with the top 15 finishers in the male and female open divisions earning guaranteed prize money. The male and female national champions will take home $15,000 each, plus additional prize money for time and record bonuses. Full prize money info is here.
So who is vying for that cool $15K?
After all the calamities during my spring and summer racing, I decided to just put my head down and focus on training hard. In the past I’ve always loved racing my way into shape and competitiveness, but now I live at least an hour away from any mildly competitive races. Not wanting to sacrifice precious family weekend time to spend half a Saturday away at a race, I opted to get in long runs or workouts on weekends instead.
My goal was the Twin Cities Marathon, which I’d never run but had heard good things. I figured a new race would be motivating, and this one always has a competitive field and historically has produced fast times.
Without racing I didn’t have much to go on other than feel, but I felt like my training went really well. I had some great long runs and quality workouts, and even managed to get in some killer Alter-G workouts where I hit times faster than I’ve ever run before. I felt fairly confident despite not having the racing results that I usually use to back it up.
Except then something started feeling wrong. Read more >>
Happy Patriot’s Day, possibly the most important running holiday of the year! Last year I wrote about the crazy-stacked women’s elite field — I declared it was going to be a good year and I was definitely right even though there were plenty of surprises.
American women’s marathoning is a whole mood right now.
So, who to keep an eye on this year? Of the 22 women in the elite field, half of them have PRs under 2:23:00. The weather is forecasted to be similar to last year, although looks like a tailwind this year.
I don’t like leaving questions unanswered. One of the main reasons I decided to attend West Point was that I didn’t want to later regret turning my acceptance down. If I didn’t like it, I could always leave for a civilian school, but not vice versa; if I didn’t accept the initial offer, I couldn’t change my mind and transfer there later.
Same with running. I never want to wonder “what if” or wish I had given it one more go while I could.
When I last wrote here on Salty Running, I left off with lingering doubts about continuing my competitive career, wondering “am I good with good enough?”
But I don’t like open-ended debates, so I decided I wasn’t. I decided to keep racing, committing to giving it my best shot. This wasn’t an easy decision to make, given my limited time, resources, and energy. I was no longer at the stage in life where running could be my top priority (or even close) and had to fit in what I could around three kids, a husband who’s always gone, and a new job that ate away any extra time I had without anything else in life giving to make room. Could I make a comeback? I wanted to try and see. Read more >>
I’ve run in the last 3 Olympic Marathon Trials, and I’m debating whether to take on the huge project of training and trying to qualify for a fourth. I was excited to learn last week that the 2020 Trials will be held in Atlanta. That news is a huge plus for me on the side of “try to qualify again.”
I think the Atlanta organizers will do a great job; in my experience, the location and background of the Marathon Trials host makes a big difference to the runners’ race experience. Let me explain. Read more >>
Not since the 1996 Olympic Games have so many runners dreamed of making it to Atlanta. Just yesterday, USATF announced that the Atlanta Track Club won the bid to host the 2020 Olympic Trials Marathon which will select the team for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
Great! Now how can you get there? The U.S. selection system for the Olympic track and field team is beautifully democratic. For the marathon, there are a few ways to qualify to compete at the Trials. Read more >>
Celebrating Des Linden’s historic win at the 122nd Boston Marathon yesterday, we’re revisiting earlier posts about Des and her journey. This post about Des’ 4th-place finish at Boston in 2017 was originally published by Salty in April 2017.
How could she not be. The race of her dreams, the one where she broke the tape on Boylston Street, has been ten years in the making. It’s been ten years since she first crossed that finish line in 19th place, and Monday she was there to be first. She would settle for nothing less.
She did not break the tape. She did not come in first. She was fourth. And it wasn’t the head-to-head battle of the wills that she fought so hard and lost in 2011. Instead, she was broken with many miles left to go, many miles left to mourn.
I cannot speak for Desiree Linden. I’ve only spent a few hours talking with her, and once sat in the back of a gator for 70 minutes as I watched her race in front of me. I do not know her particularly well, but I know enough to know she’s human. As a fellow human, I understand the pain of disappointment, of putting so much stock into one race and how much it stings when your best isn’t good enough. When Des’s voice broke in her post-race interviews, with Ryan concernedly looking on, I understood. Read more >>
Celebrating Des Linden’s historic win at the 122nd Boston Marathon yesterday, we’re revisiting our conversations with Des in Detroit in Spring of 2016. This interview was originally posted by Salty in April, 2017
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It’s one of those Midwest spring days, the ones 30 degrees cooler than the day before, with pouring rain that chilled more than snow as it drummed down on rows of sleepy mid-century cottages and split-levels. It’s the kind of day where nobody wants to stand around outside, particularly not on a Saturday morning after a hard 0-dark-thirty workout that didn’t go exactly as planned. But there is Desiree Linden, a two-time Olympic marathoner, bundled up with coffee in hand, sleepily shouting “Good job!” to participants in the Bill Roney 5k.
It doesn’t take much for Des’s husband, Ryan to get her to smile and gin up a little enthusiasm despite the conditions and her lingering angst about the workout, which had gone ever-so-slightly awry.
What brings Des to this rainy street corner in suburban Detroit, three weeks before she hopes to win the Boston Marathon? Read more >>
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