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Naoko Takahashi Returns From High Ground Ready for Nagoya

http://www.chunichi.co.jp/article/feature/niwm/CK2008022802091213.html

In the leadup to the final selection race for the Beijing Olympics Japanese women's marathon team, the Mar. 9 Nagoya International Women's Marathon, Sydney Olympics marathon gold medalist Naoko Takahashi (Team Phiten) returned to Japan on Feb. 27 after 2 months at her high-altitude training camp in Kunming, China.

Takahashi, 35, failed to qualify for the Athens Olympics 4 years ago. This last chance to make the Beijing Olympics will be everything for her. Speaking to reporters at Tokyo's Narita Airport, Takahashi said of her training in Kunming, "Everyday, I did exactly what I needed to do. I feel ready now. My goal is to run my own race."

While at the training camp Takahashi might have gotten discouraged when she ran into problems, but, she explained, "I try to live by my motto, 'Your dreams will come true if you don't give up.' The only thing I am thinking about is winning.' With such clear focus she was able to work through any challenges she faced.

"I don't know how many times I did 30 and 40 km runs." While at her main camp in Kunming, located at 1900 m elevation, she ran up to 70 km per day. She also ran at altitudes as high as 3200 m in the mountains near Kunming. "I'm the one who most wants to see the answer to the doubts about my training."

Takahashi's 'last chance' will take place on the Nagoya course where she has won both of her previous runs. But she knows it will not be easy this time. "It looks like everyone will be in Nagoya. It wouldn't be strange to talk about winning, but my goal is to run my own race."

After returning to Japan from high-altitude training before both the 2005 and 2006 Tokyo International Women's Marathons, Takahashi hurt her legs. "I tend to be accident-prone, but this time my heart is strong and I am going to be careful to avoid a cold or any more little accidents." Will we see the Q-chan we all hope for? Only 10 crucial days remain.

Translator's note: There is a huge quantity of press right now about Q-chan's training in Kunming. I will try to make time to translate some of the more informative articles. Here is a 3-part series about her, in Japanese, with some photos:
http://www.chunichi.co.jp/article/feature/niwm/CK2008022202089587.html
http://www.chunichi.co.jp/article/feature/niwm/CK2008022302089920.html
http://www.chunichi.co.jp/article/feature/niwm/CK2008022402090164.html

Comments

Anonymous said…
Brent,you should go to Nagoya to watch the race. Q-chan knows how to ham it up for the paparazzi. It's funny to watch.

Should be a great race, and Mizuho Stadium should be packed out at the start and finish. I am surprised that the race is not set up for Q-chan to win like in Tokyo 2003. There are a ton of great runners in this race, and it should be quite a war to watch.
Brett Larner said…
I probably should go down, especially as Mika is running, but I'm going to Aichi the following weekend to run a half and then overseas for a month the week after that, so.....

Plus I kind of want to see this one on TV.

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The Kawauchi Counter

Yuki Kawauchi's 2018 race results: Jan. 1: Marshfield New Year's Day Marathon, U.S.A.: 2:18:59 - 1st - CR
Jan. 14: Okukuma Road Race Half Marathon, Kumamoto - 1:03:28 - 7th
Jan. 21: Yashio Isshu Ekiden, Saitama: 1:01:03 - 1st - ran entire 20.0 km ekiden solo and beat all 103 teams of 6 runners each
Jan. 28: Okumusashi Ekiden First Stage (9.9 km), Saitama - 29:41 - 6th
Feb. 4: Saitama Ekiden Third Stage (12.1 km), Saitama - 36:54 - 4th
Feb. 11: Izumo Kunibiki Half Marathon, Shimane - cancelled due to heavy snow
Feb. 18: Kitakyushu Marathon, Fukuoka - 2:11:46 - 1st - CR
Feb. 25: Fukaya City Half Marathon, Saitama - 1:04:26 - 1st
Mar. 4: Kanaguri Hai Tamana Half Marathon, Kumamoto - 1:04:49 - 12th
Mar. 11: Yoshinogawa Riverside Half Marathon, Tokushima - 1:05:50 - 1st - CR
Mar. 18: Wan Jin Shi Marathon, Taiwan - 2:14:12 - 1st
Mar. 24: Heisei Kokusai University Time Trials, Saitama
              5000 m Heat 4: 14:53.95 - 1st
              5000 m Heat 6: 14:36.58 - 2nd
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Guinness Certifies Kawauchi's World Record 78 Career Sub-2:20 Marathons After Half Marathon in Panda Costume

Known as the Civil Servant Runner, Saitama Prefectural Government employee Yuki Kawauchi's career record of 78 sub-2:20 marathons was officially recognized as the Guinness World Record at a ceremony in his hometown of Kuki, Saitama on Mar. 25.  Raised in Kuki, Kawauchi began working for the Saitama Prefectural Government after graduating from university. Running while working full-time as a civil servant, he has qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic trial race.

Earlier this month on the 18th Kawauchi ran Taiwan's Wan Jin Shi Marathon, winning in 2:14:12. His 78th time running faster than 2 hours and 20 minutes, his achievement was certified as the official Guinness World Record. He actually broke the previous record on Jan. 1 at the Marshfield New Year's Day Marathon in the U.S.A. with his 76th sub-2:20 but followed up with two performances, one in February and the other last week, before Guinness could ratify the record.

The official recognition ceremony took place Mar. 2…

“The Miracle in Fukuoka” - Real Talk From Yuki Kawauchi on “Taking on the World” (part 1)

http://sports.yahoo.co.jp/column/detail/201701120002-spnavi

translated by Brett Larner

Ahead of his nomination to the London World Championships Marathon team, Sportsnavi published a three-part series of writings by Yuki Kawauchi on what it took for him to make the team, his hopes for London, and his views on the future of Japanese marathoning.  With his place on the London team announced on Mar. 17, JRN will publish an English translation of the complete series over the next three days. See Sportsnavi's original version linked above for more photos. Click here for part two, "Bringing All My Experience Into Play in London," or here for part three, "The Lessons of the Past Are Not 'Outdated.'"


The Fukuoka International Marathon was held on Dec. 4 last year. Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov’t) took part despite nursing injuries he had sustained in training. Falling rain contributed to less than ideal conditions during the race, but from the very early stages…