Common Wealth Games take over Glasgow

July 24th, 2014
Commonwealth games now running

The opening ceremony of the Commonwealth games began with a bang yesterday (Image: Getty)

While the sun may have set a while ago on the British Empire, much of the pomp and circumstances of the time endures to date. The Commonwealth Games, especially for sports fans, are the epitome of those traditions. Glasgow, Scotland plays host to this year’s edition of the quadrennial sports festival that mirrors the Olympics, albeit in a smaller scale for most of the English-speaking world outside of the United States.

Many of the world’s greatest track athletes are invited, making the event a significant fixture on the track calendar. With countries like Jamaica, Kenya, Australia, New Zealand, and India being represented, the competition is sure to be intense. Of course, the United Kingdom will also bring their best athletes to Glasgow as well. However, in this competition they represent their home nations of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales instead of wearing the Union Jack.

While the withdrawal of Mo Farah is a big blow to the event, there is still enough great talent in the mix to create legacies and introduce new heroes. The most prominent name on the marquee is surely Usain Bolt, but he is only committed to Jamaica’s 4 X 100m relay team. Other prominent stories include Kenyan David Rudisha, world record holder in the 800, continuing his comeback from injury. New Zealand’s Valerie Adams is continuing her unprecedented winning streak in the shot put, and Englishman Greg Rutherford is hoping to add a matching Commonwealth medal to his Olympic gold in the long jump.

Rudisha Running World Record

David Rudisha has high hopes this year after recovering from a knee injury (photo: AP)

The Opening Ceremonies occurred yesterday and featured Rod Stewart belting out his hits and Scottish terriers leading each country in the parade. Also, during the opening ceremonies, £3.1 was raised for the charity Unicef to help children world wide with some of the participating countries being some of the neediest. While athletes don’t take to the track until Sunday, competition has started in earnest today with swimming, track cycling, gymnastics and many other sports already handing out medals. England’s Brownlee brothers, Alistair and Jonny did do some running today to win gold and silver (respectively) in the triathlon while Jodie Stimpson won for England on the women’s side.

The Commonwealth of Nations is, at best, a rough alliance of countries that share some language, culture, and an increasingly distant history under one monarchy (many times an unsavory history at that). The ability of the countries to come together and celebrate many of their greatest athletes is worthy of notice. Athletes like Bolt and Rudisha, choosing to travel to Glasgow and represent their countries instead of saving their legs for more lucrative meets in the months to come, is a testament to the games and their prestigious history.

Scott Running Sport , , , ,

The Badwater Run carries on without the Badwater

July 23rd, 2014
Badwater Run Champion

Harvey Lewis, victor of the race and the terrain. (Photo: Chris Kostman, Instagram)

The Badwater Ultra Marathon, dubbed “the most difficult run in the world”, was won by Harvey Lewis in a time of 23:52:55. Lewis, a teacher at the Cincinnati School for Creative and Performing Arts, covered the 135 miles of California high desert over 50 minutes quicker than his nearest competitor, Grant Maughan of Australia. Alyson Venti, an Oceanography Ph.D. student from University of Miami won the women’s race in 28:37:28.

The course, famous for traveling from the lowest point in North America, Badwater, to the trailhead of the highest mountain in the contiguous United States, Mount Whitney, changed drastically this year due to permitting issues within Death Valley National Park. Over 30 years of safe  and successful events were held in the park by Badwater’s parent company AdventureCORPS. They also host an equally crazy 508 mile bike race from the California coast into Death Valley. The Park suspended all event permits to conduct a safety audit, forcing the Badwater run to start somewhere other than Badwater or be cancelled.

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Dolomites Skyrunning, Rare Alpine Beauty

July 22nd, 2014

In the span of three weeks, Killian Jornet has repeatedly broken through reality taking on the world’s best athletes on the most spectacular courses seemingly every weekend.

Kilian Jornet is part billy goat

This weekend, a week after winning the Hardrock 100 mile race, he won the Dolomites Skyrace beating Rumanian Ionut Zinca.

Laura Orguè took conquered over 3000m of cumulative climbing to take the women's race.

Laura Orgue moved up in distance from her typical specialty, the vertical kilometer (an event with around 1000 meters of climbing over a variety of distances but typically shorter than 5km). So, Really steep.

The race is unbelievably beautiful

And here are more pictures because they are amazing.

Dolomite running

Running through a cave of snow

And through an alpine meadow

Some moments on the course seem more like rock climbing than running

These photos and more can be found at dolomiteskyrace.com

Scott Running Events , , ,

Shoe Review: Saucony Ride 7

July 21st, 2014


With the seventh edition of the Ride model, Saucony continues its tradition of providing a highly cushioned neutral shoe with an elemental feel. While trends over previous years have been focused on minimalism, Saucony has instead catered to many runners still looking for additional cushioning. Across the brand, Saucony has committed to lowering weight, lowering offsets, and creating a platform that sits closer to the ground, yet still providing more cushioning than a bare to the bone minimal or barefoot engineered shoe. The Ride has become a staple trainer for the neutral runner looking for a soft underfoot feel.

Summary:

  • 8mm offset (28mm heel, 20mm forefoot)
  • 9.3 ounces in weight
  • Removal of medial shank creates a more flexible feel and reduces weight.
  • Addition of plush rubber pods provides a soft feel.
  • 20% greater ground contact due to redesigned outsole
  • Additional vertical flex grooves in forefoot make toe-off smoother

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Emma and Evan Leap over Barriers

July 21st, 2014

Trailed by long blond hair and many of the best steeplechasers in the world, Evan Jager and Emma Coburn have set the standard for Americans. With no big global championships available this year, it is the perfect time for Americans to run all-out with nothing to lose. Our barrier jumping compatriots have taken advantage of the opportunity to build on their legacy, fearless of the world’s best.

While the steeplechase may not garner equivalent attention to some other track events, its unique nature and potential for disaster makes for some loyal fans. When the best from each gender in the country’s history are reaching their peak at the same time, the event is doubly exciting.

Emma Coburn and Evan Jager dominating their discipline.

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Scott Uncategorized

Shoe Review: Nike Zoom Pegasus 31

July 18th, 2014

The Pegasus series has become a favorite of many runners over the years and the legacy continues with the recent release of the Zoom Pegasus 31. (Check out RW’s first look at the Pegasus 31 from May here.) The Pegasus is traditionally known to be a neutral daily trainer suitable for long distances, but in an effort to make the shoe better, the 31st edition gets revamped with a faster road feel.  To help fine-tune this “fast feel,” the Nike development team received technical suggestions from the 5000m and 10000m Olympic Gold Medalist Mo Farah resulting in a firmer ride built for performance.

Overview:

Nike lowered the heel drop to 10mm, 2mm lower than its predecessor, to engineer the quicker design.  The lowered drop, while not massive, can be a factor in promoting more of a mid-to-forefoot strike while running.  Another significant update is seen in the addition of a slightly elevated forefoot, resulting in a smoother and quicker transition of the foot during forward propulsion. Through research, analysis, and feedback from wear testers, who logged over 16000 miles, the new quick and responsive Zoom Pegasus 31 was born.

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Connor Running Shoes , , ,

Another Generation of Hardrock Adventure

July 14th, 2014
    “Long distance” is an subjective concept. Long can mean a mile to some while others use marathons as “speed training.” However, the unifying quality of distance running, regardless of the distance, is adventure that accompanies the training, racing, and post race celebrating. You pick your poison, but you are rewarded with a story once you endure.

    With that, the Hardrock 100 Mile Endurance Run may stand-alone in the adventure classification.  Built in the footsteps of Rocky Mountain miners – the hardy exploring archetype of the western genre – this run makes no concessions to the weary. The 100 mile distance is only part of the challenge, with the average elevation atop the tree line of 11,000 feet. Not to mention that runners are exposed to extra weather-related variables without sufficient oxygen to process their plight.

    Katie DeSplinter took this amazing picture of a Hardrocker. (found at hardrock100.com)

    Read more…

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Jack’s Helping Hand

July 10th, 2014

Jack’s Helping Hand is the inspiration behind the Running Warehouse’s Pozo 5k (held every Fourth of July at the historic Pozo Saloon, this year’s race recap can be found here).  While gathering for some holiday morning sweat has its benefits, doing so for Jack’s Helping Hand make the efforts to organize the event each year particularly rewarding.

Jack Ready, like many kids, learned to love watching cartoons and playing games. Unlike most kids, Jack needed assistance to do these things while he also waged a battle with a rare form of brain cancer.

In memory of their son, Paul and Bridget Ready started Jack’s helping hand in an attempt to make sure San Luis Obispo County’s children and their families, who are inflicted with the life’s unexpected circumstances, get the support they need to maintain a semblance of normalcy.

Jack’s Helping Hand helps these families with support from all angles. From support for treatment related equipment, technology, travel and other unique needs to community development and networking between families facing similar difficulties, Jack’s Helping Hand brings hope to those where hope might be otherwise lost.

In Jack's Memory, countless kids and families are helped.

Jack’s Helping Hand has also been instrumental in building an infrastructure within the county to support those with special needs. The organization has developed toy libraries so that families can find special toys for their kids while saving money for other essentials. They have advocated for expanded pediatric cancer treatment within the county so that less children have travel for their treatment. They are in the process of building The Jack Ready Imagination Park, a place for all kids to stay active with play structures, sports fields, and an equestrian center that is accessible to all.

If you are a San Luis Obispo County resident and your family or a family you know of can use Jack’s Helping Hand, applications are here.

If you can help support Jack’s Helping Hand in any way – information is found here.

Scott Uncategorized

Runner vs. Nature: Skunks Stink

July 10th, 2014

Throughout the United States, skunks are hiding in cat-sized crevasses waiting to roam the night (or if you are reading this at night, they are roaming currently). These opportunistic animals are happy hunting insects and small rodents, foraging for berries, scavenging a convenient carcass, or making a mess of your trashcan. Over time, their versatility has allowed them to thrive in virtually every condition and take on urban sprawl with little impact on their population whereas other animals have been less successful at “fitting into society”.

Skunk

Skunks can't be missed (Image: Britannic)

Where most animals use camouflage to blend in, skunks are outsiders. If squirrels listen to Coldplay, skunks listen to Rancid and dress the part. Like our neighborhood punk rock aficionados, standing out is part of their visage and lets the rest of us know that they play by a different set of rules. Where their furry friends scurry to safety at the first sign of danger, skunks are more apt to mosey on brazenly until predators prove they are serious.

Despite their prolific presence in our environment, runner-skunk encounters are rare. Still, if you run enough miles, particularly at dusk or dawn, it is likely that you will see a skunk in your running career. If you get too close, you, and your social life will be immediately impacted.

While other mammals have the ability to create a musky scent for territory marking or mating purposes only skunks have the ability to spray their musk as a projectile. As anyone with experience can attest, their musk is by far the most potent. From glands in the skunk’s rear, the offensive fluid can be sprayed up to 12 feet with a good amount of accuracy.

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Pozo 5K 2014 Race Results

July 9th, 2014

What a wonderful day at the Pozo Saloon! We had the most participants in the history of the race. While we did not have any records broken, there were some speedy times. I will let you look at the results to see who ran what (see results below). We would like to thank all of our friends, who woke up extremely early on a holiday and drove out to the middle of nowhere, to help make this event such a success. We honestly could not have done it without your help. So thank you very much!

Another big thank you to all of the participants! You helped us raise over $4000 for Jack’s Helping Hand. That is amazing! For more detailed information on Jack’s Helping Hand, check out our blog post here.

Thank you to the Pozo Saloon for their continued support of the 5K. We really appreciate you support.

Thanks to Josh at J. Carroll for the screaming deal on the awesome T-shirts! They were very popular.

Thanks to San Luis Ambulance for providing medical response and care on the course.

It seems that this little race is quite popular, as we continue to see many of the same names year after year. A few of the names are Ivan Huff and his group from Paso Robles High School, the Hungerford Family, the Mackinga Family, Kevin and Mary Cooper, the Wilson Family, Matt Ruane, and Carol Sinsheimer.

Thank you also to many of the employees of Running Warehouse and Tennis Warehouse. Your help and enthusiasm was wonderful!

Erik and Marissa Dube, father and daughter tandem

I hope that everyone involved had a good time, and I truly appreciate all of your help in raising money for a wonderful cause!

See you next year!

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Chris Running Events, Running News, Running Sport , , , ,