Tag: Molly Huddle

Transitions! A Panel Discussion

NE Distance is hosting an incredible panel discussion with their friends at Foundation Performance Sports Medicine in Plainville, MA on December 11th at 7pm.

Transitions! A Panel Discussion will include luminaries such as:
•       Julie Collins, Head Coach of Mansfield High School – 4-time Boston Globe Coach of the Year. Currently on a 58-0 Cross Country win record
•       Mark Coogan, Head Coach at Dartmouth University – 1996 Olympian
•       John Gregorek – 1984 Olympian
•       Molly Huddle – 2012 Olympian, Current American Record Holder in the 5,000m and now World Record Holder in the 12k

The moderator will be Bob RothenbergTransitions! will discuss the transitions between the cross country and track seasons, between high school and college and between college and the pros.

Tickets are free, but limited. Register today!  Tickets and more info available here.

.US champs

The .US National Road Racing Championships (results) were held back on November 17th in Alexandria, VA and several athletes with local ties did quite well there. A couple of them even did better than anybody had before. Ever.

Both Molly Huddle and Shalane Flanagan went under the 12k world record. Although Shalane was pushing the pace early it would be Molly who came out on top, running 37:49 compared to Shalane’s 37:57. It was a little confusing as to what record was broken and who held it, since some articles seemed to say American record, others that it was a world best. That led me to believe that Kastor held the world record, but she didn’t. Here is the nitty gritty:

Old world record: Lineth Chepkurui 38:10
Old American record: Deena Kastor 38:24

There’s a good piece over at Competitor (by David Monti) that explains it and summarizes the race.

The triple points earned in this race were enough to propel both Molly and Shalane past Mattie Suver, who had a strong grip on the top spot, for the season standings. was named the USATF athlete of the week. Huddle and Flanagan finished 1-2 with 60 and 51 points, respectively, while Suver dropped to third with 47 points. As if the week couldn’t get any better for Huddle, she was named the USATF Athlete of the Week.

A couple of other locals placed in the standings as well: Katie DiCamillo finished tied for 19th for the year with her 16 points, followed by Katie Matthews and Sheri Piers, who both scored 6 points and ended up tied for 39th place.

Speaking of Matthews, she did quite well at the 12k to wrap up the circuit. Katie finished 10th in 40:22 and was the youngest finisher in the top 20. Matthews responded to a couple of Level questions after the race:

Having debuted in the half not too long ago, did you have more confidence about your strength going into this 12k?

“I did have confidence regarding strength going in to the 12k after running the half marathon. The half marathon was so new for me though that I figured I would feel more comfortable in the 12k than I did in that half.”

How did things play out over the last couple of miles?

“In the last few miles the chase pack that I was with sort of strung out and I ended up being almost alone between the women, which made it tough. Dealing with being alone like that and still pushing when the race is at it’s hardest part is something that I need to work on. I think I lost track of my pace and let it slip a little more than I should have. Those miles are when I need to be picking up the pace and not slacking off!”

In the men’s race, it was Aaron Braun taking it in 34:27. Tim Ritchie continued to assert his presence at the front of these elite fields with another strong race, this time running 34:45 and finishing 6th. Tim went on the Level after and answered a couple of questions:

Not too much time between TCM and .US. For mere mortals that might not be enough time to recovery. Were you still feeling the marathon in your legs for this one?

“I had six weeks in between TCM and .US and had this 12k as the goal race all throughout the second half of the year. Therefore, the marathon was more of a step (granted a big step) along the way. That being the case, the approach to TCM was patient and controlled. In training, I was not going overboard so as to not be wiped out by the race, or unable to recover in time for the 12k, and in racing, I was relaxed and consistent throughout. Both of these were done consciously knowing that my season still had six weeks left. The course at TCM was favorable for recovery with minimal downhill and relative flat terrain for the first 20 miles. In the race I was able to run pretty even splits, negative splitting the second half. I think both the course layout and the whole ‘not-bonking’ thing really played well into the recovery. Had I gone into Twin Cities with the goal of winning or really tearing it up, I do not think I would have been able to bounce back as quickly. I took two weeks of light running after the marathon, followed by three weeks of normal mileage with a workout or two per week. In this last week, I rested up and cut things down to prep for the race on Sunday. I do not think I still had the marathon in my legs and I was ready on Sunday to give it my best.”

As you’ve said before, it usually comes down to one late move in these races. How were you able to respond this time?

“This race was controlled the whole way by eventual winner Aaron Braun. He took the pace early and kept inching it up the whole way. There was a big move at 5 miles or so which separated the top 4 from everyone else – I was in 5th at that point. As that group pulled away, I towed along another 5 runners or so until most of them passed me in the 11th kilometer. Finding myself in a disappointing 9th with 600m to go I knew I had to dig really deep. I began a lengthy kick which put me back up into 5th before finally being beaten out to take 6th in the last 30m. It was tough to see the top 4 and the win disappear at 8k and hindsight always makes you wonder if you could have stuck with it. At this point, I think that reflection is not going to get me anywhere, so all I can do is look forward. Though I wanted the podium, I was pleased with 6th, it was consistent with my performances all year on the USA Running Circuit. The year 2013 was the year of scoring points. I hope 2014 will be the year of winning races!”

If Tim’s answers don’t motivate you, then you might want to consider taking up another sport. I’m finding it hard to resist the urge to go out and do a tempo run right now. How can you not root for a guy like that?

Tim wasn’t the only member of Level Legion to run well that day. Pat Fullerton ran a 37:09 and finished in 19th place. Abdi Abdirahman finished in 23rd, so although Pat wasn’t up with the leaders he still got a scalp. It looks like Abdi had an off day, to say the least, but you still have to be in pretty good shape to get a guy like Abdi even when he’s not at his best.

For the year, Tim finished in 5th place with 47 points. Other notable guys with local ties: Ben True (11th), Chris Barnicle (39th), Pat Fullerton (43rd), Zach Hine (47th) and Brian Gagnon (54th). Overall it was Shadrock Biwott, with the help of the 12k triple points, coming in ahead of Matt Tegenkamp by a score of 88 to 69.


Ritchie, Fullerton Earn Some Points

CVS 5k Scott Mason

Fullerton goes after it, courtesy of Scott Mason Photo.

The US National 5k Championships were held in Providence back on September 22, once again as part of the CVS Downtown 5k race. This post race interview with Pat Fullerton and Tim Ritchie almost slipped through the cracks during our hectic month of race coverage that was September. It’d be a shame to overlook Fullerton’s first big Level interview.

In the race itself, Tim placed 6th overall (14:02.7) and Pat was 12th (14:20.7). For national championship scoring purposes, Tim was 4th and Pat was 8th, so they both earned top ten status and Tim got himself another top five finish. Pretty impressive.

As Tim says in the interview, it’s a tactical race and there’s really only one big move and that comes at the end. Things really shake out in that last mile and the lead pack will be together for the most part up until then. With that in mind, it was quite surprising to see Pat out in front when the gun went off. It led to a moment of “Is that? Wait. Really? Is Pat leading the race?” It didn’t last long, as he settled back in and ended up running a PR by thirty seconds. Not a bad showing for someone that still doesn’t have a lot of 5k experience.

With that PR, Pat scored himself some series points. It’s safe to say that Pat won’t be sitting in a tie for 38th place for long if he keeps racing like this. With a little more experience on this stage he could become a constant up in the front. is anything In the standings, Tim is currently sitting in sixth place. The seven points he picked up for his efforts helped him leapfrog a few other runners to get him into the top ten.

Here’s the interview:

New England is also has some representation up front in the women’s standings. Katie DiCamillo is currently 10th, while Shalane Flanagan and Molly Huddle are both tied with other runners for 11th. In the 5k championships more specifically, Katie Matthews placed 9th (16:09.2).

The next championship distance is the marathon, which will be the Twin Cities Marathon on October 6th.

Huddle Repeats


Courtesy of Scott Mason Photo.

Molly Huddle out-kicked Emily Infeld to secure the repeat at the US 5k Championships. For Huddle, a Providence resident, this was her third win in four years. Infeld represented Molly’s toughest challenge yet over this current run of success in Providence. This was Emily’s first ever road race but you couldn’t tell from the fight she put up for the defending champion all the way to the finish.

The winning time for Molly: 15:29.6.

Here’s an interview we did with Molly after the race, but before she headed over to the NE Distance karaoke fundraiser (of punk rock heavy metal style).

Hump Day Round UP

File this under ‘breaking news‘ and also under ‘terrible news‘. David Goodman got hurt. Per the NE Distance Facebook page we found this tidbit:

Goodman suffered a freak injury that is threatening his outdoor season. He dislocated his elbow in a fall. Wrappings came off on Monday and the doc says it’s healing nicely, but we’ve already had to cancel his opener which was going to be this Friday in Princeton. We’re going to see how he responds to training over the next week and make some last minute calls on the races we were planning – April 13th at the Brown Invite in Providence and the April 28th Peyton Jordan in California. We will keep y’all posted.

We have two theories on this injury:

1.) David incurred this injury in a diving attempt to save Molly Huddle’s life. As a sign of gratitude, Molly joined the NE Distance board of directors.

2.) David had to arm wrestle his teammate/roommate Meaghan Hobson to see who’s turn it was to do the dishes. Although Meaghan won she still had to do the dishes because she hurt him so badly.

In all seriousness, we wish David a speedy recovery and hope he doesn’t miss too much time (if any at all).

On to more positive news…

In case you missed it, we featured the SISU Project in our Club Spotlight section of the latest issue of Level Renner (Mar/Apr 2013, pg 25). When they put out a call looking for blog volunteers to help spread SISU shortly after, yours truly answered the call. The product of our collaboration can be found here, along with other creative blog posts by some names that will be quite familiar to you. Read about my SISU, find your own SISU and help spread SISU by checking out their blog.

At the end of February I was sitting in the RaceMenu office talking with Brendan Kearney about how good of an idea it would be for Bill Rodgers to finally join Twitter. He had been suggesting it to Bill, then I tried helping out with this tweet:


We put that up a while back and forgot about it…until Bill recently joined Twitter. I’d like to think that’s the tweet that finally pushed him to do it. I know, I know, that’s wishful thinking (to the max). Either way, please join us in welcoming Bill Rodgers to Twitter (and I guess Level Legion too since he’s following us now)!

Big things coming are coming your way soon. We should have interviews up with Tim Ritchie and Hilary Dionne sometime before the marathon. Tim is looking to make a big splash on the scene as he makes his marathon debut. Hopefully the weather is a tad more cooperative this time. Hilary was 15th at Boston last year and also the third American woman. That’s crazy good. Looking forward to hearing what both of them have to say about the 2013 race.

I will also be making an appearance on the radio to talk about the marathon on the The Boston Sports Stamp (AM 1510) show with Victoria Barnaby and the rest of the gang. That should be really fun and a great opportunity to get the word out about the locals who are ready to make some noise on April 15th.

And finally, I just wanted to take a moment to reflect on just how far we have come. Almost a year ago now, Kevin Balance, Joe Navas and myself donned our Level t’s and stormed the marathon expo. The website was still fairly new, we didn’t have much up yet in terms of video footage and our audience was much smaller.

As we made the relentlessly made the rounds (over multiple days) in an effort to network and further the cause, we kept getting asked about Level Legion. Well, not in those terms specifically but more along the lines of ‘how many subscribers?’ and ‘how many Facebook friends?’, etc. At the time we might’ve only had 250 or so friends on Facebook and as proud as we were of that number we soon realized it wasn’t impressing many of our new acquaintances.

We’ll be returning to the expo this year with the same mission and definitely see it as a triumphant return. Our Facebook following has swelled to 1,229 (and counting) and our web traffic is growing at a strong rate. We know there’s still a lot of growth ahead of us, both before the marathon and continuously after, and you can help with that. If you love what we do (even if it’s only a mild ‘appreciation’ to a strong ‘like’), please make it official and help out by:

Screen Shot 2013-04-03 at 4.21.09 PM

As the image to the right shows, we made it easy for you and have links to most of those options right there on our homepage. Any (or all) of these would be a huge help to us and make us look that much more attractive to the people we meet on Marathon Weekend. All it takes a is a quick click; it’s free, easy and totally non-intrusive. Officially joining the Legion will help us get a better product out to you.

Thanks again for your loyal support and we look forward to covering your races, workouts and stories going forward.

Molly Huddle Joins NE Distance Board of Directors

Screen Shot 2013-01-30 at 4.30.41 PM2012 Olympian and current American Record holder in the 5000m Molly Huddle has joined the Board of Directors for NE Distance, a New England based non-profit organization with a unique dual mission to promote health and wellbeing among children in while providing support to post-collegiate athletes on a training path to top-level competition.

NE Distance established an athlete-in-residence fellowship program in the city of Woonsocket, Rhode Island in 2012.  The not-for-profit organization recruits top-level post-collegiate track athletes and provides them with housing, travel stipends, gear, physical therapy and places to train.  When they are not training to represent New England at top level meets, each NE Distance athlete fellow works 16-20 hours per week in after-school programs, providing mentorship, coaching, tutoring and living within community to model good habits for health including physical activity and smart eating habits.

Molly Huddle says, “I wanted to get more involved in the community where I have chosen to live.  The NE Distance program has done a great job of integrating running and physical activity into a program that is beneficial to both the community and the athletes in the program”.

Nich Haber, President of NE Distance says, “Northern Rhode Island sent four track & field athletes to the London Olympics with Molly being the most prominent American.  We are extremely honored that she is joining our Board of Directors.  We know she will be extremely inspirational to our athletes and to the youth in the community that our athletes serve”.


About NE Distance:  NE Distance, Inc. (www.nedistance.org) is a community-based distance running program funded by individuals in the running community.  NE Distance provides a supportive environment for post-collegiate runners committed to representing their community and reaching a higher level of competition.

Providence Student-Athletes Honored at City Hall

Students hear from Olympic distance runner and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (Tuesday, December 18, 2012) — The Taveras Administration and Providence Public School District (PPSD) hosted a pizza party for student-athletes from across Providence today at City Hall. Superintendent Dr. Susan Lusi represented Mayor Taveras and honored the city’s high school teams and individual athletes who competed for a state title during the Fall 2012 sports season.

“We are proud of all of our student-athlete and offer a special congratualtions to these young men and women who enjoyed an exceptional fall season. Sports and other extracurricular activities are important complements to the academic offerings in our schools,” said Dr. Lusi. ”Participating in athletics teaches students to be leaders, to set goals, to develop self-discipline, and to work collaboratively. Sports also increase confidence among students, and athletic and extracurricular experiences often translate to greater success in school.”

The teams honored at this event were:

* The Classical High School Boys Soccer Team – Division II Champs for 3rd consecutive year, 15-1-1 record

* The Classical High School Girls Tennis Team – Division II Runners Up, 11-1 record

* The Mount Pleasant High School First Volleyball Team – Division III Runners Up, 11-5 record

* The Mount Pleasant High School Varsity Football Team – Division IV State Champs, 9-2 record

* An individual runner from the Hope High School Cross Country Team – sophomore Nathalie Rosado, cross country state qualifier

During a brief speaking program, students heard from Molly Huddle, a Providence resident who represented the United States in the 2012 London Olympic Games. Huddle, one of four Providence residents to compete in track and field events during the London Games and the U.S. record holder in the 5,000 meter track and field competition, competed in the finals for that event.

The athlete recognition event was co-sponsored by NE Distance, a nonprofit that provides elite post-collegiate distance runners with training opportunities and meaningful part-time work as tutors and coaches for local youth. Currently, NE Distance athletes work with more than 75 students each week, supporting afterschool programs that aim to prevent childhood obesity. Founder Nich Haber attended the event.

The student athletes also heard from Eddie “Scorpio” Morris, a former member of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five — the first hip hop group to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Scorpio spoke about his work mentoring students and encouraged students to stay
focused in school.

Each season, Mayor Angel Taveras and members of his administration open City Hall to Providence Public School athletes who compete for a state title. Following the conclusion of the 2011-2012 winter sports season, Mayor Taveras brought his childhood friend, Providence Friars Mens
Basketball Coach Ed Cooley, to City Hall for a pizza party with students.

*This is a press release from the City of Providence regarding the above NE Distance-sponsored event.

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