Making Your Miles More Meaningful – The Gifts That Keep On Giving

The marathon is a long-distance running event with an official distance of 26 .2 miles that is usually run as a road race. The name Marathon comes from the legend of Philippides, a Greek messenger. The legend states that he was sent from the battlefield of Marathon to Athens to announce that the Persians had been defeated in the Battle of Marathon.  It is said that he ran the entire distance without stopping and burst into the assembly, exclaiming “We have won” before collapsing and dying.

The marathon was one of the original modern events in 1896, though the distance did not become standardized until 1921. More than 500 marathons are contested throughout the world each year, with the vast majority of competitors being recreational athletes. On March 20, 2011 the Honda LA Marathon will be running its 26th marathon! Will you be running that day?

Here’s a little bit of motivation from Jeff Galloway*, who recently completed the Athens Marathon in Greece.

At first it seemed like your average Marathon start in Athens– crowded, energized, full of expectation and questions about how one would feel at the finish.  But as we turned the corner and saw the tomb of the soldiers who fought for our democracy in 490 BC it hit me.  We were running on the same ground as Phidippides — 2500 years later. 
The Marathon has more power today because it has become the most universal symbol of health excellence.  As I listened to the babble of an amazing number of languages, the energy of the runners was universal.  We were sharing a special moment together as we were earning our right to be called Marathoners.  
It was my 155th marathon, and I don’t take any of them for granted.  But as I entered the sacred ground of the original stadium of the modern Olympic Games I was more emotional that I had been since I ran the Boston Marathon with my 75 year old father in 1996.
As you finish your special race or workout run during the next year, give thanks for the rich history of the ancient messengers, for the endorphins that change our attitude for the better in a few minutes, for the unique blend of body, mind and spirit that we receive from running. 
On to the next 2500 years of inspiration.

*Jeff Galloway is world-class athlete. As a member of the 1972 Olympic team, Jeff competed against the world’s best athletes in Europe, Africa, and the former Soviet Union. Among his victories are the Peachtree Road Race, Honolulu Marathon, Atlanta Marathon and top place finisher in many prominent U.S. races such as the Boston Marathon. He is the Founder of the Galloway Marathon Training Program and has coached over 200,000 runners and walkers.

7x7x7 Conclusion – Congratulations Marie-Louise!

We are pleased to announce that Marie-Louise Stenild completed her 7x7x7 Challenge last Friday in London.   She is now officially the first woman to have run 7 marathons in 7 days on 7 continents.  The Honda LA Marathon staff is truly amazed and proud of her accomplishment and we feel honored to have been a part of her journey.  To make sure she gets the full Stadium to the Sea experience we have invited her back as our guest to run the 2011 Honda LA Marathon presented by K-Swiss.  We are looking forward to welcoming her back to Los Angeles in March.

Here is a recap of her adventure from the Westminster Chronicle:

Pimlico woman runs into record books

A Pimlico lawyer has run her way into the record books by completing an epic marathon challenge.

Marie-Louise Stenild, 36, of Dolphin Square, has become the first woman to run seven marathons in seven days on seven continents.  She began her quest on October 30 in the Falklands and crossed the finishing line on The Mall in Westminster on November 5, taking in Chile, the USA, Australia, Singapore and Egypt along the route.

After completing the challenge, she said: “I’m just very happy and it’s really nice to be home.  “The Singapore marathon was very tough because it was very hot and humid, but I’ve been quite strong throughout the race which has surprised me.  “I’m just so pleased not to have to worry about getting on a plane.”

Before she left, she told the Chronicle: “Failure is not an option.”  To recover from her 183.4-mile challenge, Miss Stenild took a week off work as a City-based lawyer with Rogge Global Partners, which sponsored her.  She was inspired by adventurer Sir Ranulph Fiennes, whom she heard speak about his 7x7x7 in 2005.

At the finishing line, she was cheered by her friends, family and colleagues.  Her father Anders Stenild said: “In the beginning, I thought it was a crazy idea but she has done a very good job. “I think she’s inspired me to do a bit more running now.”

Miss Stenild ran the race to raise money for the Adam Rogers Trust, set up by Mark and Fiona Rogers in memory of their 13-year-old son Adam, who died of a brain tumour three years ago.  The trust cares for children with cancer and encourages adults with learning difficulties to live and work in the community. Miss Stenild decided to raise money for the charity through her challenge, as she was so moved by Adam’s story and the strength and dedication of his parents.

For more information, see or

Making Your Miles More Meaningful – Girls on the Run of Los Angeles County

This weekend topic at the LA Roadrunners (our official training program) is Women and Running. A guest speaking will be talking about important running issues as they relate to women.  Well that got me thinking about one of our Official Charities.  Girls on the Run!

Their mission is to educate and prepare girls for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living..

Girls on the Run of Los Angeles County is a lot more than a running program. They are fitness and health for mind, body and life. Girls on the Run of Los Angeles County is a life-changing, learning program for girls age eight to fourteen years old. The program combines training for a 3.1 mile run/walk event with self-esteem enhancing, uplifting workouts. The goals of the programs are to encourage positive emotional, social, mental, spiritual and physical development.

The Girls on the Run objective is to reduce the potential display of at-risk activities among its participants. The goal is fewer adolescent pregnancies and eating disorders, less depression and suicide attempts, as well as fewer substance/alcohol abuse problems and confrontations with the juvenile justice system.

Amy, age 10, recently won a national essay contest with her answer to the question:   “How has Girls on the Run helped you to be more fearless?”  Here’s her response

Like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, I learned to get through the tornadoes in my life with the help of Girls on the Run. At GOTR they give you a yellow brick road to fearlessness. In this version I am from Pasadena, not Kansas, and I don’t have a dog, but I have friends. We are all trying to reach the Emerald City where our coaches work hard to make our trip easy. For example, there is a scarecrow in my life. She has been through a lot this past week. I have to be strong and fearless for her. I learned, at GOTR, to listen to my inner voice and stand up for myself and others. I helped the scarecrow down from a pole of sadness and uncertainty, but I wouldn’t be able to say this without GOTR. There is also a tinman. A person without a heart. She is the one who has kept the scarecrow on her pole this whole time. But in this story the scarecrow and I didn’t bother to take her with us.  With the strength I have gotten from GOTR, I don’t need a wizard to get me home, and I don’t need ruby slippers when I have running shoes.
Join the first-ever GOTRLA team to run or walk the marathon and raise money to help make GOTR available to girls in Los Angeles.

Contact Info:  Girls on the Run Los Angeles – Christine Harmes

7x7x7 Update – 4 marathons down, 3 to go!

On Monday, the LA Marathon staff was on hand to support Marie-Louise Stenild on her world record attempt to become the 1st woman to run 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days.  We were so honored to be a part of this experience and had a great time hearing about her training as well as her travels and marathons completed thus far.  I had the pleasure of running the entire course with her and even on day 3 she looked strong and kept a smile on her face during the entire run.  In her words, “Failure is not an option!”  She is an amazing and determined woman and if days 4-7 are anything like Monday she will have no problem accomplishing this feat. 

Here are some of the highlights from Marie-Louise’s run of the Stadium to the Sea course:

7x7x7 Itinerary

Marie-Louise speaks with KABC7 before the run

LA Marathon/LA Dodgers team with Marie-Louise

And we're off...

Congratulations Marie-Louise! Marathon #3 completed

For those of you following Marie-Louise’a journey she is now in Singapore getting ready for marathon #5.  Her next two marathons (Singapore and Cairo) will be run at night in order to avoid the heat and humidity of daytime running.  She will continue to update her blog, as she reaches each city and completes the marathons.

We wish her the best of luck and are looking forward to her strong finish in London on Friday!


Making Your Miles More Meaningful – Raising Money Even Though You Have an Entry

I have been writing my blog post about running for charity and introducing you to some of our 65 Official Charities.   I want to continue to encourage you to consider running for a charity this year, even if you have already sign up.

Raising Money Even Though You Have An Entry:  Most people that run for charity are raising money gain entrance into a race, however you can still raise some money for a charity even through you already have registered.  It does not matter if it is a 5k or a full 26.2, $100 or $10,000; charities will appreciate your effort to bring awareness to their cause and I promise you will feel satisfied that you made the extra effort to raise money just for the sake of raising money.

Let me introduce Youth Mentoring Connection:

Youth from some of the toughest neighborhoods in Los Angeles are signing up for the Honda LA Marathon.  This is the first year that Youth Mentoring Connection is participating as an official charity, and several of their teenage mentees are training for the 26 mile race.  “We are delighted to see that so many of our youth have taken an interest in running the marathon. This experience will require them to get in shape, improve their diets, test their will and channel the stress factors ever present in their environment into a positive outlet”, says Karyl-Lyn Sanderson, YMC’s Marathon Coordinator. YMC services at risk youth challenged by the threat of poverty, gang and domestic violence, drug abuse and teen pregnancy to name a few of the prevalent issues in their communities. 

Several mentors have also signed up to run in support of their mentees and to fundraise for the organization.  Becky Wagner, 10 time marathon runner thought for sure she had run her last race.  When she found out that YMC was an official charity she held out for one more.  “I thought it would be so meaningful to run for a cause that I really believe in. I just had to do it.” Youth Mentoring Connection’s mission is to awaken at-risk youth to their power, unique gifts and purpose by matching them with caring adult mentors.

Contact Info: Youth Mentoring Connection – Karly-Lyn Sanderson (323) 731-8080 ext 104

7x7x7 – World Record Attempt – 1 more week until Marie-Louise reaches LA

We are getting closer to the start of Marie-Louise Stenild’s world record attempt to be the 1st woman to run 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days.  She begins her journey in the Falklands (Antarctica leg) this Saturday.  From there it’s on to Santiago, Chile and then here to Los Angeles for marathon #3.  We plan to leave Dodger Stadium around 1pm on Monday and will run the official Stadium to the Sea finishing in Santa Monica in the early evening.  Marie-Louise will head back to LAX on Monday night so she can continue on to Sydney, Australia, Singapore and Cairo, Egypt before finishing her adventure in London on November 5th. 

In addition to taking on this incredible physical and mental challenge, Marie-Louise will also be raising funds for the Adam Rogers Trust.  The Adam Rogers Trust is a registered charity and was established in 2007 in the honour of Adam Rogers who was just thirteen when he died of a brain tumour.  The Trust’s purpose is to raise funds to help care for children with cancer and to help adults with learning difficulties live and work in the community.

If you live or work on or near the Honda LA Marathon route, we encourage you to come out to support Marie-Louise in this amazing endeavor.  The marathon staff will be on hand to support her along the course and will be sending out updates via Twitter ( @lamarathon) throughout the day.  Wear your Honda LA Marathon shirts, your Halloween costumes from the night before, all of your marathon medals, whatever you can do to let us know you are out there.  You all know how important the spectators are in a marathon, let’s help to make LA her most memorable run!

For more info about the 7x7x7 run, visit Marie-Louise’s website,

For more info about the Adam Rogers Trust, visit,

Hope to see you out on the course next Monday!

Making Your Miles More Meaningful – Beit T’Shuvah

Many people run a marathon for charity. Many more should! The money you raise goes to a great cause of your choice and should make you feel good doing it. Get involved! The Honda LA Marathon has 65 Official Charities for you to choose from. Here’s a closer look at one of them!

Beit T’Shuvah is a residential treatment facility located in West Los Angeles that has been restoring lost souls and returning them to themselves, their families and the community for over 23 years. Our mission is to provide emotional and spiritual healing in a Jewish context to individuals and families afflicted with addictive and behavioral disorders. Beit T’Shuvah is the only addiction treatment program in the United States that integrates Jewish traditions and spirituality, the 12-Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and traditional psychotherapy. Our life saving program helps addicts transition from negative life patterns to positive goals. We have never turned anyone away due to their financial situation. As a result, Beit T’Shuvah keeps its doors open by depending on outside donations, grants and fund-raising efforts such as the LA Marathon.
Michael J Cohen is running for Beit T’Shuvah for his 2nd time this year. This is the 2nd marathon he has ever run. “MJ” as he is called is an alumnus of the Beit T’Shuvah’s program. He entered the treatment program in December of 2008 after being released from a 9 year prison sentence. He went to Beit T’Shuvah, not knowing how long he’d stay here, just knowing he wanted to learn a better way of living and to become a productive member of society.

He completed the program in 2009 and has continued to stay close and connected to the Beit T’Shuvah community. His participation in the “Run to Save a Soul” campaign last year was a life changing experience for him and definitely something he never thought he’d accomplish. He has returned to the team for a second year now and is working with new runners to help them have the same life changing experience running the marathon gave him. He is instrumental in leading the weekly team runs, recruiting new runners and is a huge asset to the team.

“MJ is truly an example of the ultimate transformation that takes place for so many people when they come to Beit T’Shuvah. He exemplifies what our program is all about. His participation in the LA Marathon with Beit T’Shuvah once again, will help us raise the necessary funds to continue helping people as we helped him,” Nina Haller, Director of Major Gifts

Contact Info Beit T’Shuvah – Alison Ditlove (310) 204-5200 x 230

Tips from Coach Rod – Nutrition, part 2

It’s very important for us to understand everything we are reading. If you are unsure of a word or term, Google it, discover more information!

Here are 3 words I want you to Google  to know more about.


Increase your Endurance
At the end of the day, are we feeling a little tired and a bit low on our energy?

So why is it when we just get into our training, we are feeling more tired just after 20-30 minutes?

Most of us think ‘low blood sugar’ however it’s real name is *Glycogen.  Glycogen is the body’s main source of energy and is stored primarily in the liver and muscle cells.  It is made up of Glucose, (Glucose is a type of sugar “in storage form” the body uses for energy)  and is the body’s most easily accessible form of energy.

I think most of us (adults) have about 1 hours worth of Glycogen stored at best, so if you haven’t had a snack at least a hour or so before training you are already slowing down.

Research shows that eating the right amount of *Carbohydrate, (Carbohydrate provides the body with fuel, which in turn the body will process into Glycogen) several hours before training can maximize your Glycogen supply, which will boost your energy and endurance.  Learn the practice of having a mid morning and mid afternoon snack, it should be about 1 gram of carbohydrate per pound of body weight. (depending on your body weight you should be having one or two typical energy bar type snacks)

I am assuming, of course, you have had a sensible breakfast and lunch!

(This is a good time to experiment with your own requirements)

Drink for Endurance
Skipping liquids is not a good idea.  It also means you are missing out on an easy to absorb delivery system for nutrients your body requires and needs during and after training.  Knowing fluid requirements at this early training stage and exactly how much you need and how much to replace is not easy.

Just know if you are getting thirsty, (it’s best not to rely on this as a gauge), you are well into the first stage of dehydration!  Learn to hydrate often during the day and take fluids with you on the training run, and have a good amount available after the training if you are away from home.

Prepare for Recovery
We don’t improve when we are Training, we improve when we are in rest and recovery.

So recovery starts when we finish our training, the clock is ticking!…my experience has shown me, consume some carbohydrate and *Protein, (Our body requires Protein to build and repair tissue, it’s very important in the recovery phase of training) within 20 to 30 minutes of training.

Its sensible to combine protein and carbohydrate, together they achieve more than either does on it’s own. carbs may help protein reach your muscles faster, speeding recovery and repair.  Get the ratio’s that are right for you, usually 2 to 1 – carbs to protein (example: in a 250 ml to 500ml recovery drink make sure you have approx 26 grams of carbs and 13 grams of protein)

Eat well my friends.


7x7x7 – Honda LA Marathon to be USA stop on Danish woman’s world record attempt

Marie-Louise StenildA Pimlico woman is set to run her way into the record books as she embarks on an epic marathon challenge.

Marie-Louise Stenild, 36, is aiming to become the first woman to run seven marathons in seven days on seven continents.

The City-based lawyer begins her quest on October 30 in the Falklands and ends on November 5 in London, taking in Chile, the USA (Los Angeles), Australia, Singapore and Egypt along the route.

She was inspired to take up the Rogge 7x7x7 Challenge by adventurer Sir Ranulph Fiennes, whom she heard speak about his own 7x7x7 marathon in 2005.

“I love running on my own, it’s my time that I greatly value,” said Ms Stenild, who is Danish and has lived in London for seven years.

“However, I don’t think I could run alone for seven marathon distances on consecutive days, so I’m delighted to have runners accompany me for some or all of the way.

“Their company will prove invaluable, and running alongside locals gives me greater confidence.”

Running alongside Marie-Louise on November 1, will be our very own Director of Operations, Stacy Embretson.  The two will set out from Dodger Stadium at approximately 1pm to run the iconic Stadium to the Sea course. 

Apart from the physical challenge of running a marathon every day for a week, Ms Stenild will face dramatic differences in temperature and climate and an upset body clock as she jets between continents and crosses time-zones.  Earlier this year, she completed three marathons in three weeks in Luxembourg, Copenhagen and Stockholm, managing each in just over four hours.

For her 7x7x7 challenge, she will be raising money in memory of 13-year-old Adam Rogers, who died of a brain tumor three years ago.  His parents, Mark and Fiona, set up the Adam Rogers Trust in his memory to help care for children with cancer and to help adults with learning difficulties live and work in the community.

For more information, see or

Falklands (Antarctica):
30 October 2010
Santiago, Chile (South America):
31 October 2010
Los Angeles, USA (North America):
1 November 2010

Sydney, Australia (Australasia):
3 November 2010
Singapore (Asia):
3/4 November 2010 (night run)
Cairo, Egypt (Africa):
4/5 November 2010 (night run)
London, UK (Europe):
5 November 2010

Reprinted with permission from the Westminster Chronicle, 9/13/10.

Portraits from Chicago

Our Director of Operations Stacy Embretson and I spent several days last week at the Chicago Marathon. Stacy went to work with their staff on the start crew in order to learn about their famously organized start corrals. I spent the weekend inside the Expo talking to runners about the Honda LA Marathon. These weekends are exhausting but very valuable. This is the second year I’ve been to the Chicago Expo and it’s a great event. The runners are a generally fast group from all over the world. Many runners are attempting to qualify for Boston on the pancake-flat Chicago course. Like last year, I shot portraits of a some of the people that I met over two days in the Expo.


Bart Yasso, Runner's World Magazine, Author of My Life on the Run

Broadcasters Ed Eyestone and Toni Reavis flanking Mammoth maven Andrew Kastor

2009 and 2010 Chicago Marathon Champion Liliya Shubukhova

Southern California native Josh Yelsey, now in Chicago for business school. He ran 2:38 in the heat.

The extended Hernandez family from Mexico City

Kevin Diaz, New York City. He ran LA this year and loved it.

Blogger Paige Spicer and Josh Williams. They got engaged at the LA Marathon finish line this year.

Marc Laloux and Sebastien Landrieux. Paris, France.

Marisela, Adriana and Andrea from San Jose, Costa Rica.

Scott Mantz and Andrea Sabesin from Los Angeles.

Miguel Angel Jimenez. Barcelona, Spain.

Jim McDonald from Portland, OR. He runs the website.

Domenik Elsen from Mechelem, Belgium.

Jan Seeley from Marathon & Beyond Magazine, standing next to me.

Honda LA Marathon Champion Wesley Korir with Jonathan and Krista Vetort. He finished 4th in Chicago this year.

Wally Oakes, Manchester, UK He's run 301 marathons!

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SUNDAY, MARCH 15, 2015