Sunday, May 31, 2015

Run 5K and then run a mile - in less than a week

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, May 31, 2015


A lot of fun events are coming up this week, beginning tomorrow, Monday, June 1st.  One of several weeknight races in the summer, the Roxbury Community Benefit 5K in Succasunna is the first Monday night race in the area.  The race was originally organized by the Merry Heart Health Care Center and the center is a primary sponsor of the race, but now organized by the Morris County Striders.

The focus is on the family and the community with runners from all the towns of Roxbury and surrounding towns like Randolph, Flanders and Rockaway and Denville.  The course was changed in 2012 which makes for an opportunity for course records.

In 2012 James Lothian, of Morristown, won in 17:20 with Diana D’Achille of Denville the women’s winner in 18:46.  Colin Frost of Randolph won the 2013 race in 15:51 and Maria Dana of Kenvil was the women’s winner in 18:13.  In 2014 Dana came back and lowered her time to 18:01 to establish the women’s course record and Youssef Rochdi of Rockaway set the men’s course record of 15:19.  Those might be a high bar to clear, but some of the masters divisions could still be a target.


The College Avenue Mile races in New Brunswick, this Saturday, June 6, began three years ago, but it wasn’t until 2014 that it was a USATF New Jersey championship event.  That designation brought a whole new set of milers, namely masters runners who were competing for their teams, and with that brought a nearly full set of age division records.

Although some very fast Morris area men are in the top five, it is the Morris area women who have topped their divisions.  Maria Dana of Kenvil in the W35 finished in 5:10 in 2012; Elena Rozhko of Morristown has the W40 record of 5:15.  Susan Bessin of Madison holds the W45 record of 5:47 and Mary Christian of Flanders has the W50 record of 6:00.  Nora Cary of Morristown has the W55 record of 6:24 and Jane Parks also of Morristown has the W60 record of 6:49.

On the men’s side, Roger Price of Randolph has two age division records.  In 2012 he finished in 5:41 for the M60 record and in 2014 he set the M65 record of 5:55.  Ed Smith of Mountain Lakes finished in 6:20 setting the M70 record.  The overall fastest time was run by Chris Johnson of New Providence who finished in 4:20 in 2014.  Cheyenne Ogletree of Port Reading has the fastest women’s time of 5:01, also set in 2014.

Weather and all else permitting for good racing, it will be interesting to see if any of those records fall.  The first race is a Youth race at 5:00 pm, followed by the first of several open division races.  The M40 starts off the masters races at 5:50 pm.   What has been reported as the most fun to watch or run is the relay at 7:20 pm. 


The Ridgewood Run 10K was won by Mike Fisher of Brookline MA in a relatively slow time of 32:17 this past Monday.  Much more impressive was the performances of the masters athletes in whose division the race was a championship.  Eight out of the top eleven men were forty or older.  In what had to have been a satisfying finish for the 44 year old Frieder twins, Elliott of Montville and Jonathan of Hartsdale, NY was their third and fourth place finishes in 34:13 and 34:14 respectively. 

Also noteworthy was fifty two year old Mark Zamek of Allentown PA who finished in 35:21.  Zamek’s time was age graded at 86.41% just back a spot from Beau Atwater, 57, of Bernardsville who finished in 36:50 for tops in the age grading at 86.65%.   Roberta Groner of Randolph was the top woman to finish and she wasn’t that far back.  Groner finished in 35:53 in 12th place overall.

Gary Rosenberg led his M40 Garmin team to second place, finishing in 35:09.  Also scoring on the team was Zamek, John Sabatino of Morris Plains in 37:56 and Kevin Higgins of Randolph in 38:48.  The Garmin M50 team also placed second with Zamek and Higgins the top two on the team.


Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Women outnumber men and some out run most of the men

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, May 24, 2015

Back in the day, as the old timers say, men outnumbered women in running races.  The split back in the 1980’s and 90’s found one woman for every two or three men who ran in a race.  At the 1999 President’s Cup Night Race in Millburn 718 men finished the race while 354 women did.  In 2000 544 men finished to 207 women.

My, my, my, how times have changed.  This past weekend at the Super Hero’s Half Marathon in Morristown 585 men finished the race and 870 women finished – 285 more women than men.  How about the Lake Mohawk Girls on the Run 5K?  156 men and 718 girls and women.  OK, that’s not a good example since it is after all, a Girls on the Run event.

Justin Scheid of Sparta won the actual run around Lake Mohawk, a distance of 8.2 miles in 44:13, probably two minutes ahead of the rest of the field.  At the Super Hero the race was won by Laurent White of Flemington in 1:19:53 and Alexandra Niles of Fairfield in 1:26:22.

At the Run for Rachel in Livingston the gender count was an almost even split – 158 men and 154 women.   Scott Isgett, 46, of Rockaway finished first in 18:44 and second overall was Diana D’Achilles, 23, of Denville in 18:52.  I’ve included their ages because the first place woman is 23 years younger than the first place man.  How often does that happen?

Photos of the Run with Pride 5K in Madison that was run this past Wednesday were published in the Daily Record on Thursday, and pictured in one was Elena Rozhko, of Morristown who won the women’s race in 18:32.  That’s a fast time for sure on a not so fast course, but more remarkable is that Rozhko is forty three years old and only four men finished ahead of her, and they were all under thirty.  Nick Reid of Kearny won overall in 17:01.

New Jersey always gets high marks from the national office of USA Track and Field.  The state association hosts long distance running championships, track and field and race walking for open and masters athletes.  A full program of youth and Junior Olympic events is offered and cross country for all ages.  So a check mark goes behind each discipline, except one – ultra running, or as it is known in the sport – MUT - mountain, ultra, trails.

Well now New Jersey can check that mark as well.  On Sunday, May 30th, the Mayapple Trail runs, 50km, and 100km, that will take place at South Mountain Reservation in Union County will be the New Jersey championships for those two MUT distances.  The races are not for the faint of heart.  In 2014 five men finished the 100km, 4 did not finish, and three did not start.  The 50km did better with 27 finishers, 10 dnf’s and 2 dns.  It is a niche market and one that the New Jersey association is happy to add to its lineup.

Another championship race is taking place this weekend.  The Ridgewood Run 10K, a masters men championship, is taking place tomorrow, Monday, May 25th.   More than one thousand runners will be in the race and maybe double that in the 5K. 

Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Zero Runner is on sale

Zero Runner is on sale this weekend.

I wrote about the Zero Runner in a column this winter and how I loved it. 

From their ad, "This zero-impact machine replicates a smooth, natural running experience (with absolutely no stress on knees and joints), and finally enables injured athletes to resume their fitness routine no matter how long they've been sidelined.  With the Zero Runner, the era of smarter training has arrived."

It is true.  Over winter it was a welcome device when it was too cold or icy outside to run.  Well, this summer when it is too hot and muggy and buggy I intend to be on the Zero.  I ran on it yesterday when it was so cold and windy.

The ad states that the Zero will be on sale at 20% off from Friday, May 22nd through Monday, May 25.  The machine is a bit pricey so if you have hesitated this is your chance to buy it and keep a little more cash in your pocket.

Short Hills Gym Source
740 Morris Turnpike in Short Hills


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Time for a little Track and Field

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, May 17, 2015


It’s that time of year that some runners will put on their spikes and head to the track for some fun running fast in circles.  Long Distance runners for the first time can run a 5,000 meter or 10,000 meter race on the track and earn points in the New Balance Grand Prix.

Other opportunities are there to run the 800 meters, or the mile.   Some adventurous folks will look to run 2,000 meters or 3,000 meters while leaping over steeples.

The New Jersey USA Track and Field calendar shows all of the youth and Junior Olympic meets so the adult athlete needs to look closely for meets where they will feel comfortable.  All comer meets offer a range of events and but are never complete meets.   If they are part of a series they will offer a mile at one meet and the 800 meters at another, for instance...

 All comer meets have an advantage over championship meets that require that athletes compete against their own age division.  At all comer meets the athlete needs to provide a recent time for the event or an expected time, and then they are seeded with others of the same ability.  In championships an outstanding runner will go into the lead with no one able to be “in the race” with him in the age division.  At an all comers meet he would be seeded with younger athletes whose times are comparable to his.

The calendar is crowded with youth meets and short on open and masters meets and they are sometimes wedged into less desirable spots.  There is good reason for this.  For a well run meet to be staffed by officials, the meets need to avoid the same spot as another meet or the meet will be short of officials.  At a road race, the timing company comes with a skeletal crew that is assisted by volunteers.  Not so with a track meet.  You need people who are trained to officiate.

A track meet needs a host of officials to conduct a range of events.  A meet with too few officials will not be able to stay on schedule and may have errors in the way the meet is conducted and timed or measured.

An ideal schedule would have several all comer meets culminating with a championship meet.  That seldom happens and this year the USATF New Jersey championship meet comes before any all comer meets.  It is split with a handful of events on Friday, May 29th and on Sunday, May 31st.  It is taking place for the first time at Thomas Edison Park in Edison. 

Friday night is when the 5,000 meter race is being held and is the last event on the schedule.  The exact time will not be known until the registration has closed on May 26 and posted on May 28.  Friday is also when the steeplechase events will be run.

The 10,000 meters is the first event on the track on Sunday thus kicking off the meet at 8:30 a.m.

June is when the all comers meets begin.  The first of three twilight meets hosted by the Princeton Athletic Club at Princeton High School will be on Thursday, June 4th.   The first track event will be at 6:00 p.m.  Other meets in the series will be on June 11 and June 25.

On Saturday June 6th, Monmouth University in West Long Branch will be the site of the New Jersey International Track and Field Meet.  The Shore Athletic Club holds a series of all comers meets in July in Neptune each Tuesday evening.  While a bit of a drive from Morris County, folks who are visiting the shore might be able to fit one in.

The Run with Pride 5K is this Wednesday, May 20th at the Giralda Farms corporate campus in Madison. 


Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Cabral wins the Newport 10,000 Championship

Published by the DAILY RECORD of Morris County, New Jersey
On Sunday, May 10, 2015



Donn Cabral of Annandale won the Newport 10,000 at Jersey City last Saturday in 29:39.  Cabral grew up in Connecticut but now lives in New Jersey and is with the New Jersey/New York Track Club.  His specialty is the 3,000 meter Steeplechase and has a personal best of 8:19.4 in that event.

The race drew a large field of out of state runners vying for a shot at the tidy prize money purse.  Second place woman, Amy Van Alstine is now living in Arizona but grew up in New Jersey.  Her time was 33:58.  Brianne Nelson of Colorado finished in 32:59 to claim first woman to across the line.

The first New Jersey woman, Cheyenne Ogletree of Port Reading finished in 12th place in 37:56
Ogletree lead her Adidas Garden State Track Club women’s team to first place in the women’s division of USATF New Jersey.  On the men’s side, Yousef Rochdi of Rockaway finished in seventh place at 30:27 and was the top man on the same club’s men’s team.

The Breakneck Track Club from south Jersey finished in second place with the second Adidas team in third.  The Garmin racing team was fourth.  Fifteen teams competed in the race.  On the women’s side it was the Adidas Garden State TC in first and second with the Garmin women third.  Twelve women’s teams competed.

Gary Rosenberg and Elena Rozhko, both 42, and both living in Morristown were the top masters men and women.  Rosenberg finished in 35:54 and Rozhko in 38:08.  Nora Cary, 60, of Morristown and Beau Atwater, 57, of Bernardsville topped their respective Age Grading ranks; Cary’s 44:24 hit 87.59% while Atwater’s 38:30 was age graded at 82.89%.

Dominic Grillo of Whitehouse Station did not disappoint at the Morris Mauler on Sunday.  Grillo, who is now 40, has now won the race six times, the all time record for wins.  He finished in 19:50, a minute off his best time of 18:54, but over three and a half minutes ahead of second place Matt Cattano of Randolph who finished in 23:29.

Courtney and Danielle Stanton, twin sisters from Montville finished one-two.  Courtney in 25:11 and Danielle in 26:33.


Next Sunday the Super Heroes come out to play.  That is if they are willing to run in a half marathon, or be part of a relay.   The course has been changed to a single loop so now the relay runners can put their stronger runner on the hilly 5.25 mile first leg while the second runner does the 7.85 mile race. 

With the new configuration the race will start at the Ginty Field location on Woodland Avenue in Morris Township and will finish at Loantaka Park on South Street.

In 2014 the race had 1,633 finishers, a testament to the draw of the half marathon distance and the Super Hero organizers in particular.  Many runners will be in their super hero costumes.

Runners who would like a shorter distance have plenty of races to choose from next weekend all over the state.  Close to home Sparta is offering a 5K with Girls on the Run, along with the challenging 8.2 mile run around Lake Mohawk on Saturday.

On Sunday is the Miles for Mike 5K in Pequannock and there’s a new 5K in Basking Ridge.  Triathlons are starting up as well.

Race Results can often be found at or at 
A calendar of USATF sanctioned events can be found at or at for running and tri and biathlon events.
Contact Madeline Bost at