Runner's Stop Meet the Challenge.


Bill Benson breaks 95+ American Records

Running, we give so much to you; our time, our talent (in varying degrees) and our love.  Every once in a while we're reminded why we dedicate ourselves to this sport.  This fall that reminder has come from Bill Benson, a Long Island weekly race competitor, who has broken the American Standard for the 95+ AG this season in both the 5k and 4 mi. distances.

Bill just perfectly embodies all that is good about running.

At, yes, 95 years old, Bill can be found out on the race course almost every weekend.  If he's not racing, then he's volunteering.  I can't count how many times I've rounded the last corner to the finish line to see Bill there with a huge smile, ushering us in.  Bill can be found at the local park, slogging out the training miles just like the rest of us, and I say training, because this guy has GOALS.

This weekend Lynbrook Runner's Stop had the extreme pleasure to be able to present Bill our team uniform as he accepted his 1st place AG award at Fly With the Owls 2014.  We're absolutely sure that you'll get as much enjoyment out of his thank you letter as we did.

Bill Benson letter no street addressBill Benson gets team uniformTo: Ellen Copeman From: Bill Benson

What a wonderful surprise! An old man who finished last in the 4 mile race getting such a wonderful gift from you.

It did make me feel better that I had bettered the All American Standard for age 95 by 11 minutes.  The Standard is 1:35 and I ran 1:24.  So finishing last was not too bad a feeling.

Thanks again.

Bill Benson



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So Much to Love about Running!

Fran and PattiEva CasaleEileenGirls on the RunWednesday nightMom and sonSacred HeartThere's so much to love about running!  It brings us good health, good friends and strong bodies.  Running outside pumps fresh air into our lungs.  Running groups bring joy and bolster self esteem for their members.  Of course, you can make all of these things happen for yourself and help them to happen for your friends without running, but we can't think of a better way!

Some of the great stuff from the Runner's Stop community in the last 6 months have been the Girls on the Run spring 5K at Hofstra, our LIRRC summer Wednesday night 5K's in Eisenhower Park,  participating in the AAU and LIFT Junior track meets, supporting Eva Casale running 7 Marathons in 7 Days to benefit LLS, the Sacred Heart Academy 5K, taking our buses of runners to the NYC Marathon again, and the SWNassau Run Series, which culminated with the Lynbrook Fly with the Owls 4 miler today!

We can only share so many images on this blog, but if you'd like to see more of the fun, visit our Lynbrook Runner's Stop Facebook page!

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Some Springspiration!

Our beloved Bill Benson will be celebrating his 95th birthday as he did his 90th, with a run and celebration picnic in Hendrickson Park on June 22.  Bill still races, recently completing the Fly with the Owls 4 miler.  When he's not racing, he's volunteering; a favorite spot is ushering runners towards the finish of the Ocean to Sound relay.  Most importantly, he always has a smile on his face and an encouraging word for others.

Another local inspiration is Runner's Stop employee Patti Drake who took up running just 4 years ago and decided to do her first marathon this year in Rome, a trip that she took by herself.  Some people won't go to the movies by themselves, while others will take a plane to a foreign country alone to try out 26.2 for the first time!

We were very lucky to have the High School winter track Nationals close to home this year at the New Balance Armory in Manhattan.  We had an embarrassment of local talent, but we have a real soft spot for the Garden City relay team which included Laurel Fisher, Caroline Ferri, and the Gerland sisters.  Jennifer Gerland won the Lynbrook Fly with the Owls 4 miler in 2009 with a time of 25:02 in a 6:16 pace when she was 12.  Two years later it was her sister Stephanie's turn; when she was 12 she took 2nd place in the Heart and Sole 5K with a time of 19:38 and a 6:20 pace!

Finally since we just celebrated National Autism Awareness Day, we couldn't write this post without sharing the beautiful story of the Schneider twins.  Profoundly autistic, those of us on the local running scene have watched these boys turn into engaging young men, surrounded by so many friends.  They can be found enjoying a road race almost every weekend and both recently completed the New York City Marathon; Alex coming in as the first Achilles runner at 3 h. 14 min., while Jamie characteristically took more time to take in the sights along the course.


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Winter Running, How to Stick with It

You're now a few weeks into the New Year, and already finding it hard to keep that resolution?  We run out of our store, Lynbrook Runner's Stop, every Tuesday, all year, no matter what.  No matter what?  Well to be honest, once in a while even we can get defeated by the weather.  It has to be a hurricane for rain to slow us down, and below 10 Fahrenheit for the temperature to stop us, but we do stay inside for lightening and ice.
So how do you stick with a routine when mother nature breaks it?  Our answer is to push the benches back in the store and load a video onto that large screen TV that every establishment has to have these days, and get a work out in anyway.  Even if you can't run when you've got it scheduled, do something!  That way you will stick with your routine and you won't have to feel any guilt about missing that workout.  In fact, throwing in a yoga or core workout will only enhance your training!
We like  this article from Anna Almendraia for Huffington Post has some easy to follow advice in Winter Workout Tips That'll Keep Your Motivated Throughout the Year. My personal strategy is to get outside whenever I can because that just makes me happier, but I don't get frustrated if I can't.  I'll just hop on my spin bike or hit my universal set, but if you don't have gym equipment at home, yoga in the living room will work too, and everyone can do that!
If it is the living room or store floor, how about yoga for runners, by Olympian Carrie Tollefson and Annie Husman, Yoga Instructor at the Lifetime Fitness in St. Louis Park, MN.  Another to try is The New Core Curriculum.
Speaking of lung burning weather, I love this article from Runner's World; Is Cold-Weather Running Bad for You?, by Amby Burfoot.  If you're looking for really serious advice on the subject, the article might not be for you, but if you already know when you're going to run or not, and just want to be amused, read on!
And since we are a store and commercial website, after all, our product advice for this time of the year is the Saucony Xodus 4 GTS with a Goretex upper to keep those feet warm and dry!
Hope that enough to help you stick with it, but if not, just think how good you'll feel this spring when you don't have to kill yourself before that first 5K or the outing to the beach!
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Girls on the Run!

Lynbrook Runner's Stop is a very proud sponsor of Girls on the Run.  This program is for girls from 3rd through 8th grade and is geared toward coaching self confidence and self esteem in a 10 to 12 week program that culminates with a 5K.  This December we were thrilled to be able to sponsor the first race dedicated solely to Girls on the Run in Nassau count Long Island, at Adelphi University.  Enjoy the photos and consider starting a program in your own area!

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Post Marathon Recovery

Everyone knows that you have to have a plan for the marathon.  Your training, your nutrition, your clothing ... But don't forget that a well thought out Recovery Plan is critical for getting back to healthy running!  Check out Hal Higdon's advice below, and take today (and tomorrow) off if you just ran New York!

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Marathon Season

I woke up today and decided that it was a red New Balance day; last year's shoe launched for the canceled Marathon.  This reminded me of Sandy for sure, but also was a clear indicator that Marathon Season is definitely upon us!  Runner's Stop employee, Jan Kasal, has Chicago 2013 in the books; and our friends Dee, Ingrid, Eileen, Casene and Ron are back from Hartford CT; but the ING New York City Marathon is just 5 days away and it's starting to feel a little bit like the Night Before Christmas.

'Twas the night before NYC, Not a runner was sleeping, they just couldn't be, The shoes were placed by the front door with care, In hopes that a PR soon would be there; They tossed and turned in their beds, While visions of post run feasts danced in their heads;

We've just checked the weather, 52 degrees and mostly sunny.  That should be great news for about 95% of the participants, so start dreaming and enjoy the taper!!

We just received the blue 2013 New Balance ING NYC Marathon 990's today and have the Limited Edition Asics Nimbus 15 as well, so even if you're not running you can get in on the fun!



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Black Girls Run takes over Long Island

The crisp air is here to encourage us to commit to those long training runs for the fall marathons and half marathons.  But before we move on too quickly, let's congratulate 61 year old Kathy Martin for setting a new age group world record for the mile at the USATF meet in Valley Stream in a time of 5:44!  The Long Beach boardwalk is back and Chris Koegel christened it for us with a very wet 5K at the Robert McAvoy Memorial Run.  The big news this season on Long Island though, has to be the amazing growth of the Black Girls Run group.  It has been such a pleasure to see this group of amazing ladies inspire each other and the rest of us along with them.  Speaking of inspirational, Rolanda Bell of New Balance gave BGR a clinic at the store to teach correct running form.  We had a great time trying to imitate her, but with a 4:46 mile on record, not many of us (any of us) could ever catch her!  The Black Girls Run web page looks very slick, but the daily training are anything but.  It's all about finding friends and running partners in your local neighborhood to keep you motivated and safe.  Look for these ladies in their black and pink gear at local races, and if you're considering joining, we give the strongest recommendation!

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Summer’s finally here, let’s get Running!

One of my favorite local coach's, Diane Scope MS NSCA Exercise Physiologist and Fitness Director -  at Sportset RVC always has great advice on every aspect of optimal training and fueling for your body.  I love her suggestion below to take advantage of the season to eat local fresh produce.
"Of course we know the importance of eating fruits and vegetables. In fact these nutrient dense foods are the cornerstone of a healthy human diet. The vast selection makes it almost impossible to get bored.
Consider though, narrowing your choices a bit to what is in season and what is local. Our bodies actually adjust to the fruits and vegetables tha...t grow in the climates we live in. We get more from their nutrients because our physiology has a mechanism for responding to our surrounding natural environment. It's a shining example of human adaptation.
Imported produce is often injected with a small dose of radiation to kill germs after traveling long distances. Harvesting something that will endure long travel erodes the full spectrum of nutrients that it originally had - organic or not.
On a final note it's always cheaper to eat what's in season and available locally."
I really love this article.  It's a new way of looking at running efficiency that challenges a few of our accepted notions, but it makes sense, and you should take the time to read this! In How to Improve Running with Proprioceptive Cues, Matt Fitzgerald makes the case for not focusing on specific body movements when running, but instead on external cues.  He states that research shows that runners who were asked to focus on their own body movements used more oxygen for the same effort.  Wayne Vartabedian of Polar once told me that his heart rate was always lower when chatting with a friend on a run, than when doing the same pace by himself, which would back up Matt's point.  I want you to read the whole article, but the other idea that I found very interesting is that a runner naturally increases their efficiency with the accumulation of miles run in a lifetime, actually making the most progress when fatigued.  Curious yet?
Backing up to Memorial Day weekend, I would like to suggest the Ottawa Full/Half Marathon to anyone planning their schedule for next year.
Why?  Called the phone number on the race web site to find out if it would be possible for our Aunt to pick our race bibs.  The phone was answered immediately by a real person.  Long breathless explanation ... we're coming from Long Island, Boston and Philadelphia, even at our "local" house this weekend will still be an hour and a half from Ottawa, is there any way that our aunt can pick up our race bibs?  The kind gentleman says "sure, no problem".  Me, "what will she need, our ID's, a letter ...".  He, "nothing, but if you want to make it easier for her you can give her the bib numbers."  So no big concern about someone taking another person's bib?  You gotta love Canada!  He even said, "we don't publicize this, but just in case, we have a last minute pick up area at the race Sunday morning.  Oh, and on the race web site there's a helpful link to explain how to transfer your bib to someone else if you decide not to run and you have a friend who would like to."  What?  We can simply transfer our bib to another runner?! What a concept! Finally, as we hung up he thanked me three times for running the race!  Race day parked less than half a mile from the start and then waited for the start in a warm building.  The mostly flat course starts in Ontario, then goes into Quebec and finishes back in Ontario.  The cheers were equal part English and French, and since all participants had personalized bibs, I was helped along with "Go, go, go Ellen, allez, allez, allez", "Keep it up, ne lachez pas".  A great race in a beautiful friendly city!
The next weekend, my friend Jennean, headed down to the Zooma Annapolis Half Marathon for what promised to be a very warm race.  Here's her hilarious recap of that race!
As we did last summer, we'll add some motivation to join us with a series of vendor rep led store runs this summer.  So if you're in our area, stop by!
July 9th - New Balance rep Rolanda Bell; a former collegiate star who among other impressive feats, ran a 4:46 mile for the University of Tennessee.  This will be Rolanda's first run with so let's show her a warm welcome with a great turn out!
July 16th - Adidas rep Paul Curtis will kick up our regular work outs and as a Lynbrook resident will be around to drop in again from time to time to make sure that we're not slacking.
Sat July 20th - Garmin rep Kiata Nixon will show us how to actually use our GPS watches, and will help us trouble shoot.  Did you know that your 305 might pick up the satellite much faster if you simply cleared all of your past runs?  I thought that they cleared automatically.  Nope.  Imagine what else you can learn!
July 23rd - Saucony rep Casey Barrett, a former Fordham stand out who many will recognize as a regular Long Island road race participant, and yes brother of our favorite competitor Sayville Running Company's Brendan Barrett.
July 30th - Sportset Training Director Diane Scope, unsurpassed in her knowledge of biomechanics and optimal diet for athletes.
Aug 6th - Asics rep Jim Norton will finish up the series of visits so we'll be sure to let him know that he'll be facing a tough crowd and should make sure to spoil us with promotional goodies.  Anyone remember the goofy photo with the frisbees and the sunglasses?
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Boston Reminds Us Why We Run

The Boston bombings weren't about runners, they were about large gatherings, but it does occur to me that the disenfranchisement that those boys must have been feeling to arrive where they did, might have been lessened by a good running group.  Running is about freedom.  Running with others is about community, commitment to the sport and to the partner, empowerment, good health and good fun.  Here are some photos that express this sentiment for me.
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