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Sapporo Begins Road Work on Olympic Marathon Course

On Apr. 6 the city of Sapporo began road repair work on the courses to be used for the marathon and race walks at the postponed Tokyo Olympics in the summer of 2021. The roads will be repaved to provide a smooth surface free of cracks and other irregularities that might interfere with the competition. The project's target completion date is mid-June. According to city officials, once the work is completed the new surface will last for a number of years, so there will no need to repeat the work again next year as a result of the Olympics' postponement.

The marathon and race walks together utilize 12.1 km of city roads and other roads maintained by the city. Excluding some sections that were repaired within the last five years, a total of 9.4 km will receive resurfacing work. On Apr. 6 work began on scoring and repaving a section of road in the northern area of the city that will be used for the marathon course.

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T-Minus About 100 Days to a National record - Part 3 of Hitomi Niiya's Training for a Half Marathon NR

Hitomi Niiya won January's Aramco Houston Half Marathon in 1:06:38, the fastest time ever by a woman born outside Kenya or Ethiopia at that point and a new Japanese national record. Over the last three days her coach Masato Yokota has published her complete training diary for the three and a half months leading up to Houston. This is part three. Read part one here and part two here. Yokota will answer any questions about Niiya's training left in the comments, so feel free.

Thanks for coming back three days in a row. This is the third and final day. It covers December and January's training. You'll be able to see the final approach and sharpening phase. Speaking of which, the only training camp Niiya went on from October on was a week in Okinawa in December. The rest of her training was all done from home in the Tokyo suburbs.

Please do not reproduce this info without permission. You're more than welcome to give these workouts a go (although I can't guarantee yo…

T-Minus About 100 Days to a National Record - Part 2 of Hitomi Niiya's Training for a Half Marathon NR

This weekend coach Masato Yokota is publishing half marathon national record holder Hitomi Niiya's complete training diary for the 3 months+ leading up to this past January's Aramco Houston Half Marathon where Niiyaran 1:06:38, at that point the fastest time ever by a woman born outside of Kenya or Ethiopia, for the win. This is part two, covering November, 2019. Read part one, October, here.

So how did you like the first month of training? I was really happy to see that so many more people than I expected enjoyed reading about it. I read every question that people left in the replies. At some point I'll answer them all, so if you have questions please feel free to leave them in the comment section.

Today is the second of three installments of Niiya's training from after the World Championships, covering Oct. 1, 2019 to setting the Japanese national record at the Houston Half on Jan. 19. This covers November's training. Compared to October it gets more and more bru…

T-Minus About 100 Days to a National Record - Hitomi Niiya's Complete Training for Her Half Marathon NR in Houston

At the Jan. 19 Aramco Houston Half Marathon, Hitomi Niiya ran 1:06:38 to break Kayoko Fukushi's 2006-era national record with support from JRN. Former men's 800 m national record holder Masato Yokota, 32, coached Niiya to that record. Over the next three days he is publishing Niiya's complete training diary for the months leading up to Houston. JRN will be publishing them in English with permission.

To people who aren't interested this will just be a list of numbers, but I thought it might help the hardcore track maniacs kill some time if I got Niiya's consent to publish her training diary for the 100 days leading up to Houston. Please do not reproduce this info without permission. You're more than welcome to give these workouts a go (although I can't guarantee you'll survive).

Notes in advance
・Easy jogs were once a day on Friday and Sunday, twice a day on other days.
・Strength training every day except Sunday.
・Daily mileage totaled about 30 km. Friday…

JAAF Postpones National Championships and All Other Major Meets Through End of June

As part of an effort to halt the effort of the novel coronavirus, the JAAF has announced that it will postpone the 104th National Championships Combined Events, scheduled for June 13~14 in Nagano, and the 104th National Track and Field Championships, scheduled for June 25~28 in Osaka. Potential dates and venues are being explored for these events to be rescheduled in late September or early July. This will include the previously postponed 10000 m National Championships originally scheduled for May 9. Further details will be announced as soon as they have determined.

In addition to the National Championships, all meets organized by the JAAF from April through June have been canceled or postponed. The JAAF has also requested that the organizers of other meets it supports during this time period likewise cancel or postpone their events. Further details will be announced by the JAAF and by individual meet organizers as the situation evolves. A list of JAAF-organized and supported meets t…

"I Prevented Them From Banning Kenyans" - Tsutomu Akiyama Part Three

Part three of three in JRN's interview with Tsutomu Akiyama, one of the people responsible for first bringing Kenyan athletes to run in Japan. Read part one and part two.

Stephen Mayaka told me that jitsugyodan teams want Kenyans mostly for the New Year Ekiden. In the last few years they’ve restricted foreign runners to one stage, the “International Stage,” and have dramatically shortened it to 8 km. Do you think this is going to result in fewer opportunities for Kenyans to find a place on a Japanese team?

With regard to that, my opinion is this: At the Olympics, the World Championships or major marathons they don’t say, “You are faster so you have to run 43 km or 44 km.” It’s the same for everyone. Everyone has the same start line and finish line. In these Japanese corporate ekidens, where they tell fast foreigners that they can only run a particular stage, the only Japanese runners who run that same stage are the slowest ones. It makes it so that you can’t really tell how big the…