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Distance running legend Craig Virgin: What is Galen Rupp taking that is giving him such amazing powers?

Galen Rupp, Olympic silver medalist in the 10,000 meters, is on a roll. He broke the American indoor 5,000 meter record on January 16, then came back 9 days later and broke the indoor 2 mile record. Just minutes following the latter race, Rupp ran an eyebrow-raising track workout in which he nearly ran a sub-4 minute mile.


Olympian Craig Virgin, who won the World Cross Country Championships in 1980 and 1981, has some questions. From Virgin’s Facebook page:

Well, American Distance Superstar Galen Rupp was at it again last night. For the 2nd weekend in a row…. he set a US Nat’l record… running an indoor 2-miles in 8:07.41 in Boston! In and of itself… amazing… but he then rested for only 15 minutes (signing autographs?!?) and then commenced a track workout…5 x 1 mile intervals…in 4:21, 4:20, 4:20, 4:16, and then finishing up with an unbelievable 4:01! All documented by FloTrack website. Congrats are due but I’m not sure what to think… both Galen and his coach, Alberto Salazar, are definitely making a statement here! Why do this kind of workout after such a hard race…and risk injury or illness? What is Galen taking or doing… that is giving him such amazing recuperative/restorative powers? I have never seen anything like this…but he did it after his AR 13:01 5K last weekend and after his 3:50.9 mile indoors last January. I am sorry to sound so jaded… but after reading so much about Lance Armstrong and Alex Rodriguez’s sophisticated and undetected doping schemes this past year …. I just don’t know what to believe anymore. I wish USATF would release what Therapeutic Use Exemption medical treatments that Galen is on that may give us one hint of what is really going on here. I am tired of rumors about TUE’s and we need some transparency in this area to maintain the integrity in our sport.


Therapeutic use exemptions are banned drugs that are allowed because of an athlete’s illness. Rupp suffers from allergies.

It was the shot heard around the distance running world as many big-name runners, including 3:53 miler Richie Boulet, 2:11 marathoner Nicholas Arciniaga, and Olympian Tim Broe, “liked” Virgin’s Facebook post.

Virgin posted a follow-up comment to his post. An excerpt:

I only wrote… what most all of you were probably thinking. I said that it is truly sad… that when an athlete gets to this record setting level… in this day and age… that we are all jaded from recent experience… to wonder if it was “natural” or “aided.” There is no question about the fact that some of NOP’s athletes have applied for and gotten TUE’s… and, in today’s climate, I think the sport and athletes would both be better served if it was made public and totally transparent… to remove any suspicion later on from any fantastic performances. That was my opinion today and it will be the same tomorrow.

“NOP” is a reference to the Nike Oregon Project, where Rupp trains under storied coach Alberto Salazar.

We wonder if Olympic steeplechaser Anthony Famiglietti  was referring to Rupp in these two cryptic tweets, posted at almost the exact same time as Virgin’s Facebook post:


Olympian Kara Goucher, who used to run for the Nike Oregon Project,  favorited one of Famiglietti’s tweets:

kara goucher


Hat tip: Let’s Run.


Double standard alert: U.S. distance runner Galen Rupp wins silver medal, media suddenly decide race isn’t important

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