Colorado Springs Engineer Stephen VanGampleare qualifies for Olympic Marathon Trials

From the Masses, an Elite Emerges at Boston

From Runners World
By Sarah Lorge Butler

Photo credit: MARATHONFOTO

Stephen VanGampleare, an engineer from Colorado, ran negative splits on his way to an Olympic Marathon Trials qualifying time.

The night before the 2019 Boston Marathon, Stephen VanGampleare slept on a buddy’s couch, in a studio apartment across from Fenway Park. The 28-year-old’s feet might have hung off the end—he’s 5-foot-10—but he was too grateful for the hospitality to admit it if he was the slightest bit uncomfortable.

“I don’t have much of a problem sleeping on a couch,” he said.

On Monday morning, he got up, met a few other runner friends at 5:45 a.m., and took the T down to baggage check for the race. From there, they boarded a yellow school bus out to the athletes’ village near the marathon start in Hopkinton. He ate a bagel with peanut butter, a banana, a crunchy peanut butter flavor Clif bar. He got comfortable on a plastic trash bag in the soggy grass, waiting until it was time to walk the 0.7 miles to the start. On the way, he stopped in the CVS parking lot on Main Street and changed into dry shoes and socks.

And from that mundane marathon morning routine—one that resembled the ritual thousands of other runners went through on the same day—he took his place at the front of wave 1, corral 1, and ran 2:18:40. Wearing bib No. 143, he qualified for the Olympic Marathon Trials.

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Ft. Collins Triathlon, May 26th, pool swim, great way to kick off the season.

By Breakaway Athletic Events

Fort Collins has been in need of a good road triathlon for years now. The Epic Mini fills that void. It’s a short distance course just shy of a sprint distance triathlon, making it fun and unique.

The name says it all! The “EPIC MINI” Triathlon. Taking place at a central venue located in Fort Collins Colorado, this race packs a punch of fun into a short course.

Beginners will feel comfortable and not intimidated for a variety of reasons. There are no long and grueling distances for each of the swim, bike & run splits. The overall course has very little elevation gain so there’s no chance you’ll need to “walk” up a huge hill. It’s a pool based swim so no wetsuits or big bodies of open water to fear.

Seasoned athletes aren’t left out either. This short course is great as a season “warm up” race, “rust buster” or an all out time trial to really test your gear and physical limits by pushing yourself. Flat & fast will make you want to push hard for your season ahead.

The Swim: Edora Pool is an absolutely great venue featuring a 50 meter pool and bleacher seating for spectators. The snake swim will feature wide lanes that allow for athlete passing when needed. Easy line sighting and a low pressure environment start this race off right.

The Bike: 10 miles as 2.5 loops around some very scenic spots in Fort Collins. You’ll have front range mountain views while coming down Timberline Ave and enjoy scenic private lake flybys at the corner of Drake & Lemay. We’ve dedicated an entire lane to cyclists for this race to ensure athlete’s safety and room to pass.

The Run: 2 miles out and back on the Power Line Trail just for our athletes. No potholes, traffic or other potential course hazards on this pristine run route. 

Race Day Expectations & The Local Experience: Coming down the finish line chute will have you smiling and high fiving as you cross the line. Our local vendors & sponsors are helping to create a great race exerience by having booths set up to meet & greet on race day as well as free swag for every athlete that registers to race. We’ll have a coffee/espresso truck available on site, provided by Buzzthru, and a fun vegan-friendly pancake breakfast spread for athletes, by our local charity Athlete’s In Tandem. We always strive to be as eco-friendly as possible, so we will be utilizing compostable cups, plates and forks and encouraging athletes to use their refillable water bottles for the bike leg vs additional plastic refill bottles. The course will be well marked with direction signs, volunteers, Fort Collins Police Services and Breakaway staff members. Athlete safety and an overall positive experience is our goal!

Fort Collins boasts some of the best local breweries around, bike friendly paths at every turn (the Spring Creek Trail is next to the run course) and a ton of activities all within minutes of iconic downtown – also known as “Old Town”. Don’t take our word for it – make a weekend out of this event and plan to get a little extra sight seeing done!

Don’t miss out!! To register or get more info visit https://breakawayathleticevents.com/epic-mini-triathlon

Columbine Survivors to Run the Boston Marathon

From Runners World
By Andrew Dawson

Sisters Who Survived Columbine Will Run Boston Together 20 Years After Tragedy

They are running to show that anyone can overcome anything.

Photo by Sarah Bush

Almost 20 years to the day, two survivors of the Columbine High School massacre will run the Boston Marathon.

The lives of sisters Laura Hall, 34, and Sarah Bush, 36, changed forever that day in 1999 in Columbine, Colorado, when two gunmen killed 12 students and one teacher. It is a day they, and the rest of the country, will never forget.

In the immediate aftermath, they didn’t know how to heal. But since they grew up in a running family—participating in and volunteering at races like Bolder Boulder each year—lacing up would become an unexpected coping mechanism.

For Bush, who was a sophomore on the track and field team at the time of the incident, running was a way to overcome any challenge. It was a reminder that she wasn’t a victim; she was capable of doing and being anything, like a marathoner.

That was Bush’s goal in college: She wanted to run a marathon before she turned 20. Bush was on track to do that until IT band syndrome crept up on her while training. She felt defeated when she went to the doctor. But she was angry and determined when she left.

“The sports therapist said to me, ‘Some people aren’t meant to run ’” Bush told Runner’s World. “I was really mad. Nobody can tell me I can’t do something, and I proven him wrong, because this Boston will be my 11th marathon.”

For seven years after the tragedy, Hall—who was a freshman when the tragedy occurred—struggled to cope until she embraced running as a form of therapy.

The moment this sunk in arrived as she trained for her first marathon in 2006.

“It is so important to choose to be hopeful, and whatever you choose, whether that’s running or sewing, there is a light at the end of the tunnel,” Hall told Runner’s World. “Both Sarah and I have been in that tunnel, and we live happy and fulfilling lives, and running is a huge part of that.”

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Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Mancos named among the Top 10 Towns for High-Altitude Running

With just over 104,000 square miles of beauty, 53 peaks above 14,000 ft, and an overall average elevation of 6,800 ft it is no surprise three Colorado towns popped up on Outside Magazine’s top 10 towns for high-altitude running list.

The Top 10 Towns for High-Altitude Running

From Outside Magazine
By Stephen Wayne Kasica

Photo: Getty Images/Stockphoto/Varsescu

Hello, red blood cells!

Want to breathe with unconstrained lungs, cruise over hills as if they were pesky speed bumps, and shave down your PR? Then you’ll need to spend some time huffing and puffing in thin mountain air. Although there’s no conclusive sweet spot for optimal elevation training, USA Track & Field has recommended that athletes live between 7,000 and 8,000 feet above sea level. Sparse oxygen at such altitude forces your body to increase its number of red blood cells, thus increasing the amount of oxygen delivered to muscles during exercise and improving performance.

Lately, some of the best runners in the country have been traveling abroad for their stints at altitude. Nick Symmonds said he trained for a month at around 6,000 feet in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, leading up to the 2014 indoor track national championships. Ryan Hall and his wife, Sara, flew to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to run at 7,000 feet in preparation for this year’s Boston Marathon. Desi Linden trained in Iten, Kenya (elevation 7,900), for the same race.

But there are plenty of high altitude destinations stateside. Flatlanders ought to be cautious when traveling any of these places—and not just because of the lack of oxygen. Visitors often become residents. Marathoner Frank Shorter moved to Boulder, Colorado, in 1970 to prepare for the 1972 Munich Olympics, and Boulderites still see him on area trails.

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American and Team USA Olympian Ben Kanute Wins IRONMAN 70.3 Oceanside

From Triathlete.com

Ironman 70.3 Oceanside
Photo: Paul Phillips/Competitive Image

Ben Kanute (USA) and Daniela Ryf (SUI) battled an impressive field of triathletes to win the 2019 Ironman 70.3 Oceanside triathlon on Saturday. Kanute narrowly edged the rest of the field to earn the overall victory with a time 3:49:25. Ryf produced another signature dominating performance, setting a new course best with a time of 4:09:19 (breaking Anne Haug’s time of 4:12:03 from the previous year) in her debut performance on U.S. soil outside of championship events.

Rodolphe Von Berg (USA) placed second trailing Kanute by only 12 seconds with a time of 3:49:37 and Adam Bowden (GBR) rounded out the men’s podium in third with a time of 3:53:53. Holly Lawrence (GBR) battled her way to a second place finish in the women’s field with a time of 4:14:06 followed by Ellie Salthouse (AUS) who finished in third with a time of 4:16:41.

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Colorado State Women’s Triathlon sweeps podium!

By USA Triathlon

TEMPE, Arizona — Colorado State University’s Hayley Belles, Meghan Smith and Katrina Lems earned the first podium sweep in USA Triathlon Collegiate Club National Championships history on Saturday afternoon in Tempe, Arizona. The Rams dominated the women’s Olympic-distance race, while Queens University of Charlotte was unstoppable in the men’s race, led by individual champion Jack Felix.

About 1,200 collegiate athletes from more than 100 club teams competed in the marquee event of Collegiate Club Nationals weekend. The Olympic-distance course was centered at Tempe Beach Park and featured a 1,500-meter swim, 41-kilometer bike and 10-kilometer run. 

Rachel Zilinskas of the University of Minnesota had the top women’s swim of the day, exiting the water in 19 minutes, 2 seconds. The University of Florida’s Nicole Stafford was not far behind though, overtaking the Minnesota athlete in transition. 

Full article courtesy of USA Triathlon, read here: Article Link


Running Through the Fear

From Outside Magazine
By Katie Arnold

In the wake of a bizarre physical attack and the death of her father, Katie Arnold felt paralyzed by the anxieties of parenthood and being a woman alone in the wilderness. She got through it the same way she’d always done, by lacing up and hitting the trail. An exclusive excerpt from her new memoir, Running Home.

There’s one question that people always ask me about running alone in the backcountry. It’s the same question they ask me about taking young children down whitewater rivers. I know because it’s also the one I ask myself. Aren’t you scared?

The answer is: absolutely. In the seven years I’ve been an ultrarunner, I’ve taught myself to tolerate uncertainty, to be comfortable being uncomfortable. I’ve run and won races ranging from 50 kilometers to 100 miles, but I still rarely leave the house without weighing my worries against my desire to run, assessing the risks of being on my own in the wilderness, thinking hard about what’s at stake. Everything.

I’m scared of getting lost and of getting hurt and of being attacked by animals wild and domesticated—even livestock. Dogs that lunge at me from yards; cattle that graze in meadows, staring at me with their mean, blank eyes when I sidle by, daring me to pass. They’re just cows, I chide myself, feeling foolish, but they are large and lumbering and ten times my weight, and they could mow me down in an instant.

I don’t worry about lone coyotes—at 40 pounds, they’re too small and skittish to do any harm—but packs of coyotes, though rarely encountered, are unpredictable. (In 2009, a female solo hiker was killed by a pair of coyotes in Nova Scotia.) Rattlesnakes are uncommon in my hometown of Santa Fe. They don’t do well above 7,000 feet, or so I thought, until the day I came upon a pair of mating rattlers in the middle of a trail. I was nearly on top of them before I realized the coiled brown rope at my feet wasn’t a rope at all, but a knot of amorous vipers, and I yelped and hurdled over them. Now I keep my eyes down.

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Brain Stimulating Headphones May Work After All

From Outside
By Alex Hutchinson

Photo: Courtesy Halo Neuroscience

The hype around the technology has raced ahead of the evidence. Now the evidence may be catching up.

From a purely scientific point of view, the idea that you can alter your physical limits by trickling a bit of electric current through your brain is pretty amazing. Without changing anything about how your muscles are contracting, how hard you’re breathing, or how fast your heart is beating, you can (in theory) go farther or faster—because electric stimulation applied to precisely the right part of the brain makes everything feel easier. It’s a pretty stunning illustration of the brain’s role in setting physical limits.

In practice, the waters are a bit muddier. Should we really celebrate the advent of a new era of brain doping, in which anyone who aspires to the top of the podium has to wire up their cranium? I’ve written a lot about a technique called transcranial direct-current brain stimulation in recent years (most recently here), and I’ve been secretly relieved that, although it seems to work in the highly controlled environment of the laboratory, there’s been little or no convincing evidence that commercially available devices like the one made by Halo Neuroscience do the same.

For better or worse, that may be changing. Last month, two new studies were published that found significant improvements in athletic performance—one running, one cycling—using Halo’s brain-stimulation headphones. Both studies are small, and both leave some questions unanswered. But as brain stimulation drifts toward mainstream, it’s worth taking a look at the new findings.

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Donald Trump to race Kona

From 220Triathlon
By Jack Sexty

The eyes of the world fell on the sport of triathlon this morning, as it emerged that President Donald Trump is to compete at the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii this October.

The President’s campaign to ‘Make Kona Great Again’ has been met with derision from the political sphere, with insiders puzzled as to how the POTUS will cope with the demands of training for a 2.4 mile sea swim, 112 mile cycle and 26.2 mile marathon run with no previous experience of racing endurance events, while simultaneously governing the United States.

Morgan Biers, supposedly a close personal friend of Mr. Trump, commented: “They say that transition is triathlon’s fourth discipline… but for my pal Donald being in charge of the world’s largest economic superpower surely has to count as a fifth. If anyone can do it though, *blushes*… the President can!”  

As entry to the World Championships is by qualification only, it is currently unclear how the President managed to secure his entry. Rumours that Mr. Trump actually travelled to one of Ironman’s new 70.3 races in China to qualify were dismissed as “fake news” by the President himself, via a caps-locked Twitter post.

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Zen and the Art of Winning Leadville

From Elevation Outdoors

By Katie Arnold

Photo by Glen Delman

Two years after breaking her leg and a doctor telling her she had to quit running, this Zen athlete took first place in one of the hardest endurance races on the planet. All it took was a little bit of Whitesnake and an understanding that winning is nothing more than the river beneath your feet

The day before the start of the Leadville Trail 100 Run, I was walking down the mining town’s main drag when I passed a dilapidated white Victorian. It had peeling gingerbread trim and two sun-faded whitewater kayaks beached on the front-porch railing. The front door looked fused shut, as if it hadn’t been opened in years. Painted above a window was a sign that read “Cosmology Energy Museum.” And above that “Divine Spirit Over Matter.”

I stopped in my tracks. In less than 24 hours, I’d toe the line of my first 100-mile race. I had no idea what lay ahead, but I understood that in order to make it through the mountains to the finish, I’d need more than physical stamina and sheer willpower. I’d need heart and humility, a little bit of luck and a lot of grace. I’d need divine spirit over matter.

Two years earlier, I’d broken my left leg in a whitewater rafting accident. My orthopedist had advised me never to run again. “Find a new hobby,” he said dismissively. He put in a piece of metal the shape of a baking spatula just below my knee that you could see through my skin. I was 46 years old. The farthest I’d ever run before was 62 miles. I didn’t have a coach or a training plan. All I had were the Sangre de Cristo Mountains out my back door and a copy of the book Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind, written in 1971 by the Japanese Zen master Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. My friend, the well-known Zen writer Natalie Goldberg, had given it to me—with a caveat. “It’s a classic,” she told me, “but you might not understand it.” Buddhism, by definition, is beyond definition, sometimes even explanation.

The minute I started reading, though, I understood everything. Not with my brain, but in my body. I understood Zen Mind because I understood running. Suzuki Roshi was writing about sitting, but I realized that if I replaced “sitting” with running, he and I were speaking the same language. After all, the tenets of Zen—form, repetition, stamina and suffering—aren’t so different from the principles of ultra running. If I could apply his teachings to my running, maybe I could train my mind and spirit to be as strong as my body. Maybe even stronger.

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