PROFILE--Eve Pell has been running for 40+ years

(9-18) Eve Pell, 81, has won gold medals in international senior track and field competitions, including the recent World Masters Games in Malaga, Spain. There she finished first in the W80 cross-country event. Closer to home, Pell has won the storied, grueling (and age-sex handicapped) Dipsea trail race, crossing the finish line first in 1989 when she was 52.

Pell is also an acclaimed author and journalist. She reported for three award-winning PBS documentaries and was published in The Nation, Ms., and Runners’ World.  She is the author of,  "Love, Again - The Wisdom of Unexpected Romance, and the nationally acclaimed "We Used To Own The Bronx,” a memoir of growing up an east coast debutante in a family of wealth and privilege and escaping that world to pursue and report on social activism. It was a finalist for “Best Books 2010” award.

Pell lives in Mill Valley, CA, where she runs with the Tamalpa Runners.

Started running: April, 1977.  I was forty. (Born in 1937) 

Why did you start running? I was raised on Long Island, New York, in a family that valued athletics more than academics. We had horses, and I was taken out of school for a few weeks in the fall so I could join my mother and stepfather when they went to Maryland for foxhunting. I rode from the age of 2 or 3, competed in horse shows, and grew up learning how

PROFILE--John Barbour has been running for 50 years

(9-18) John Barbour had some good fortune early. He grew up near Stanford University, and his father took him to many wonderful running events there. For example, did you see Gerry Lindgren and Steve Prefontaine race each other in a college cross-country meet? Probably not. But Barbour did, calling it, "the greatest mano-a-mano race I'll ever see."

Duly inspired, Barbour, 64, has had a long and successful racing career of his own, including a personal best marathon of 2:19:26. A fierce trainer, he once did a workout of 16 x 1600 meters in 5:07. Ouch!

Childhood: I was born in April 1954, and grew up in Menlo Park, California, now known as the home of Facebook though to me it’s the place that gave us Jerry Garcia, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, & the Kingston Trio.  My dad was a lifelong track fan and long/triple jump official.  I often went to meets with him, which exposed me to world-class performances.

Started running/years running?  March, 1968.  I was six when I talked my dad into letting me

PROFILE: Hal Higdon has been running for 70 years

Racing Boston 1964, Higdon (13) finished fifth 
in 2:21:55. Winner Aurele Vandendriessche leads; 
Ron Wallingford (237) finished third.
(9-18) Hal Higdon may be running's best-known runner-author-coach. He placed fifth in the steeplechase at the 1960 Olympic Track Trials, and fifth in the 1964 Boston Marathon (2:21:55). His World Masters Championships M40 record of 9:18.6 in the steeplechase (set in 1975) remains the oldest American masters record in the books.

Higdon, 87, contributed to Runner's World magazine's second issue in 1966, and was an RW senior writer for decades thereafter. He has completed more than 30 books, many not about running. His The Crime of the Century (about the Leopold & Loeb case) is his best seller. And who can forget The Horse That Played Center Field, which became an animated film (see photo below)? One of the first running experts to launch a website, Higdon has also produced dozens of popular and highly-successful training programs at and

Career: After graduating from Carleton College, I worked several years as a freelance artist then (after two years in the Army) realized I was a better writer than artist and switched to a career as a freelance magazine and book writer, but not on running subjects because nobody cared about runners back in the 1960’s.

When did you start running and WHY? I went out for track the spring of my sophomore year in high school mainly to win a letter and impress

RIP--England's Diane Leather broke 5 minutes in the mile the same month that Roger Bannister broke 4:00

Diane Leather, 1956
(9-18) We're not sure we want to become an obituary site, but the passing of some special pioneers deserves note. Diane Leather is one of them. The British runner was the first woman to break 5 minutes in the mile, which she achieved in the same month--May, 1954--that Roger Bannister broke 4 minutes.

The New York Times has a short obit and great photo today.

Here's additional information

PROFILE--Bob Wischnia has been running for 60+ years

(9-18) If Bob Wischnia’s (Wish) name seems familiar, it’s because he spent 26 years as the deputy editor at Runner’s World (started in 1977), wingman to editor-in-chief Amby Burfoot.  He met and ran with some of the greatest runners in history, including John J. Kelley, Herb Elliott, Alberto Salazar, Rob de Castella, Lynn Kanuka (nee, Williams), Steve Scott, Rosa Mota, John Gregorek, Grete Waitz, Meb Keflezighi, Bill Dellinger and many, many others. After RW he worked for Mizuno and is now retired. He lives in Austin Texas with his wife, Anita Harbor, and twin daughters, Abby (who lives in Los Angeles) and Beth (who lives in San Francisco), 28.

“My goal in college (Arizona State) was to travel the world and get somebody else to pay for it. In that respect, I succeeded. I was very fortunate to visit more than 30 countries and covered several Olympic Games (Moscow, Los Angeles, Seoul, Barcelona), numerous World Championships and various track meets, road races and marathons all over the place,” says Wishnia. “I was a lucky guy.”

Started running: November,1957. I was 7 years old.  
I grew up in the 1950s, primarily in State College, Pennsylvania, where my father taught electrical engineering at Penn State, and Stamford, Connecticut where I attended Belltown School (most famous alumni: Joseph Lieberman). The school was so old and small it didn't have a cafeteria so everyone went home for lunch. I lived about 1.5 miles away and in the winter it was too cold to ride bikes. My parents worked, so in third grade I began running to and from home at lunch. It was the highlight of my day (still is) and I ran through these beautiful woods on old Indian trails. Everyone thought I was weird, which was fine.

Why did you start running? I loved it and especially loved the freedom of movement. Eventually, I started timing my runs and

PROFILE--Sid Howard has finished 35 Fifth Ave Miles in a row

Neither cold nor ran could keep Sid
Howard from his 35th consecutive
Fifth Ave Mile on Sunday.

(9-18) On Sunday, September 10, New York's Sid Howard ran the Fifth Ave Mile for the 35th time in a row--the longest-known streak among Fifth Ave milers.  Howard, 79, hit the finish line in 10:11, not his best time but he says he's happy to keep the streak alive. He is a 10-time age group winner on Fifth Ave.

Howard’s track and field career includes five world championships, 50 national championships, five world records and eight gold world champion medals. Also on his resume are the American indoor 65-69 records of 2:19.4 for the 800, 5:23.05 for the mile, and 4:45.36 for 1500 meters. He was inducted into the USATF Masters Hall of Fame in 2005. Howard is running, coaching, and continuing his role as ambassador for the sport he loves, always with a smile and encouraging words for everyone he meets.

Sid lives a full life. He loves to break out in his signature dance moves at any moment; he loves the Bermuda Half Marathon where he is the only non-Bermudian to have native status at that race; he loves the 90+-year-old seniors he teaches strength training to as part of his job with New York Road Runners. And, he loves his streak at the Fifth Avenue Mile (FAM), which he has been running since 1983.

Why did you start running the mile? You were a marathoner? I had just run my ninth marathon (eight more than I should have!). I didn’t know anything about what I was doing. I just liked to run. So when I was invited to run the mile in 1983 I thought,

STATS--Rodgers Wins A Falmouth Division For Sixth Decade; Samuelson Too

Racing an early Falmouth, from left:
Mike Roche, Alberto Salazar, Bill Rodgers
We learned the other day that Bill Rodgers won his age group in the recent Falmouth Road Race. No big deal, especially not for Rodgers, but that’s precisely the point. It marked the sixth consecutive decade in which Rodgers has been an age-group winner at Falmouth. He won in his 20s, he has now won in his 70s, and he has won in every decade between.

Here at, we try not to focus on performance. We’re more interested in runners who keep going for reasons of personal persistence, health, and wellbeing. That said, who’s not interested in staying as fast as we can? Who’s not interested in excellence?

We certainly are. So we say, "Go for seven straight decades, Boston Billy."

Rodgers is quick to point out that Joan Samuelson beat him to six decades of age-group wins at Falmouth. She got there last year, roughly three months after she turned 60. She took home her first Falmouth age-group crown at 19.

As many are aware, Samuelson has remained ferociously fast in her 40s, 50s, and 60s. She may still have her sights set on a sub-3 marathon at 60+, which has never been achieved by a woman runner. That said, she has been troubled by injuries of late, and hasn’t run a serious marathon since her 2:54:26 at Boston 2015.

Here are the basic stats on Samuelson and Rodgers at Falmouth: their first wins, their fastest times, their most recent age-group wins. As far as we know, the 7-mile course has remained essentially the same through the years.

First Falmouth win
Falmouth PR
Recent age-g win

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