In this week’s episode of the A to Z Running Podcast, we discuss how runners can seize opportunity. Kate Grace turned disappointment into diamonds (Diamond League). Tune in for Kate Grace’s journey!
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- Amanda sent us an article about the Ingebrigtsen brothers from Podium Runner.“What Makes Norway’s Ingebrigtsen Brothers Such Exceptional Runners?”Two studies analyzed 7 years of training done by Olympic gold medalist Jakob Ingebrigtsen and his two stellar siblings. Here’s what the researchers found.
- Gert Ingebrigtsen, father and coach, monitored their efforts so they would not run too hard.
- “They don’t do continuous tempo runs on their own. Rather, they run track intervals of 2000- to 3000-meters with their father taking lactate levels. This may prevent them from going too hard in such workouts—a trap that’s easy to fall into.”
- The LMCU Bridge Run is keeping the tradition running on September 19th of providing participants with an AMAZING race day experience. From the new start/finish area near the 6th Street Bridge, the 5K & 10 Mile routes take participants through some of the best that the City of Grand Rapids has to offer…and of course, over some bridges! Reserve your spot on the starting line by going to www.thebridgerun.com.
- LMCU Bridge Run- $5 off with code “AtoZ”
World of Running
WHEN: August 29, 2021
WHERE: Antrim, Northern Ireland
WHAT: Antrim Coast Half Marathon
- Yalemzerf Yehualaw of Ethiopia ran 1:03:44
- Won the race by 6 minutes
- This is her third attempt at the HM WR (she was in the race with Ruth Chepngetich when Chepngetich ran 1:04:02 but finished in 1:04:40)
WHEN: August 29th, 2021
WHAT: Ultra Park 48hr, 24hr, and 100km
- NEW 24 HOUR WORLD RECORD
- 309.400 km (192.25 miles)
- Pace: 4:39/km (7:29/mile)
- Sania Sorokin (Lithuania) broke Yiannis Kouros’ “untouchable” 24 Hour record this weekend at UltraPark Weekend in Poland. The Greek running legend ran 303.506 kilometers (188.590 miles) in 1997.
WHEN: August 28th, 2021
WHAT: Paris Diamond League 2021
Men’s 3000m Steeplechase
- The Kenyans solidified their dominance as they displayed at the Olympic Games with a sweep in the men’s steeplechase.
- Benjamin Kigen was the victor in an 8;07.12
- 2nd was countryman Abraham Kibiwot in 8:09.35
- 3rd was Leonard Kipkemoi following in 8:10.21
- Hitting the first barrier, Soudiane El Bakkali, one of the rivaled favorites, was out of the race.
- Another surprising DNF was Conseslus Kipruto
- Previous A to Z Running Podcast guest, Hillary Bor was 9th in 8:21 and has now achieved points that qualify him for the Diamond League finals in Zurich.
- Victory by Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi in 8:19.08 in national record, meeting record, and world leading time. Wherever you fall on this controversy of whether she should compete in the women’s division, her run is upheld at this time.
- Closely following Niyonsaba was Ejgayehu Taye of Ethiopia in an 8:19.52 claiming the ethiopian national record
- Third was Kenya’s Margaret Chelimo Kipkemboi in a personal best time of 8:21.53
- 4th was the US’s Elise Cranny in 8:30.30
WHEN: August 25-26, 2021
WHAT: Athletissima Lausanne Diamond League 2021
- Men’s 800m
- Marco Arop of Canada takes the win in 1:44.50
- 2nd was Emmanual Kipkurui Korir of Kenya in 1:44.62
- 3rd was Ferguson Cheruiyot of Kenya in 1:45.48
- Men’s 3000m
- Men’s champion was Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigsten, our 2021 1500m Olympic Gold Medalist in a season best time of 7:33.06.
- 2nd was Berihu Aregawi of Ethiopia in 7:33.39 making an exciting finish.
- 3rd leader of the majority of the windy race was Australian Stewart McSweyn in 7:35.06
- Women’s 1500m
- Champion of the women’s 1500m was Freweyni Gebreezibeher of Ethiopia in a time of 4:02.24
- 2nd place was Linden Hall of Australia in 4:02.95
- 3rd was a US athlete, Josette Norris in 4:03.27
- Finished 8th at the US Olympic Trials in the 5000m
- July 18th at the Sound Running Sunset Tour Norris ran 3:59.72—which puts her at No. 9 on the U.S. all-time performer list which was nearly a seven-second improvement on her previous best beating out Australian Olympian Jessica Hull.
- All 6 major marathon majors will take place in 7 weeks
- Kenenisa Bekele will be doubling two of the marathon majors
- Berlin Marathon on Sept. 26
- New York City Marathon on Nov. 7
- 42 days apart
- Bekele told Sports Illustrated in an interview, “I still feel that I am the best and better than anyone. I think every athlete and others should think like that.”
- New majors marathon candidate: Sanlam Cape Town Marathon
MAIN TOPIC: Seizing Opportunity
How can we turn disappointment around? A limiting factor to success in running can be a major disappointment. It can shake us, make us question ourselves and our goals, even fall into depression at times. If you’ve struggled with this, you’re not alone. We’ve been there.
When considering this topic, it didn’t take long to realize the perfect inspiration for this topic is the journey of Kate Grace.
Through her story and even a few remarks from Kate, we can learn how one can turn disappointment into diamonds.
For those of you who are just joining the A to Z Running Podcast, or for those of you who need a reminder, we’ve been tracking Kate Grace’s 2021 on the show. It’s been a year of a lot of change, some disappointment, and some major personal bests.
About our Guest: Kate Grace
Although Kate Grace was a decorated collegiate runner and 4x record holder at Yale, stepping into the world of pro running wasn’t a clear path. While she did earn a sponsor before the 2012 Olympic Trials, Oiselle, she was the very first sponsored athlete from the company. She took her opportunities with her east coast training group and brand new sponsor to her first Olympic Trials where she was 20th in a time of 4:12.92.
Could she have been disappointed? Sure. Did she continue to keep pursuing? YES.
Her commitment to discovering what was possible paid off when Kate improved her times and won her first USA title in 2013 in the 1 Mile Road Championships Grand Blue Mile. That same year, Kate was 4th in the 800m at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. In 2014 Kate was 11th in 1500m at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. She was part of the 2014 US team to break the US record in the 4 x 1500m.
It was a big year for her. Things were going well.
As in all running stories, sometimes highs are followed with lows and in 2014 and 2015 she changed coaches a couple times and battled foot injuries.
While there were few years of changes, in 2016 under Coach Drew Wartenburg, Kate qualified for the Olympic Trials in the Olympic standard time, running 4:06 for the 1500m. It was a good year with a 2nd place finish at the New York Armory Women’s Elite Mile and 5th at the Fifth Avenue Mile and improved her personal best 800m to 1:58. Progress. Hard earned after injury and change.
A highlight from that year was her qualification for the 2016 Olympic Games in the 800m where Kate was the US. Trials Champion in a dicey race. She competed at the Olympic Games in the 800m representing Team USA.
“I made my first Olympic team when I was 27. Almost immediately I started to hear that I had been at my peak, implying I was on the decline. It’s one of the reasons I promptly switched to the 1500 after finishing eighth at the Olympics in the 800. It’s the prevailing understanding that the longer the distance, the older an athlete can excel. Also, I’m good at the 1500 and I wanted to give it a shot. But it’s interesting to note just how fully I switched gears, and wonder how much of that came from the idea that I had outgrown the 800.
When the Olympics were postponed, I cried. I was devastated that day partly bc of the belief that my time was slipping away. I’ve been thinking about that belief as we finish preparations for the Olympic trials, about what I thought this year would be vs. what it is becoming. I told myself I would make the most of the extra time—use it to heal and injury, get stronger. But I knew the perception that I was fighting an inevitable fade, and it made me more timid to talk about my goals.
The difference between exception and reality for this year has been the best surprise. I sometimes wonder what I would say if I woke up with amnesia, and had to go for a run and guess my age. I don’t think I’d say 32. But I’m learning to ask…why? I feel strong and fast. And if there’s one thing I know as an athlete, it’s to trust my body, stop the mental calculations, and get TF out of my own way.
So ya… I’m just out here doing it. And in the wise words of Alexis Rose, I’m loving this journey for me 😜.”
Reflection, Kate Grace, 2021
In 2017 Kate signed a contract with Nike and continued to race and progress her running career. At that time she joined the Bowerman Track Club with Jerry Schumacher as her coach.
In 2018, Kate set a championship record at the NACAC Championships in the 1500m running 4:06.23.
In 2019, Kate represented Team USA and won The Match Europe v USA 1500m in 4:02.49 which is her current 1500m PR.
In the summer of 2020, Kate was battling injury. A year with little opportunity for racing anyway, Kate focused on becoming a student of her own training with a strong focus on rebuilding. (Tune in for Speed, Strength, or Endurance with Kate Grace on the Podcast). During the winter of 2020, Kate left the Bowerman Track Club to join Team Boss. Kate discusses how this was a leap of faith for her.
“No one says it’s a good idea to change training and coaches 6 months before the Olympic Trials. I would not advise someone else to do that. But hey, they say the exceptions prove the rule.
Of course I had a plan for how I wanted this year to go. But the way Team Boss, Emma and Joe have welcomed me into the fold is just beyond anything I could have hoped for.
There have been a few workouts recently where I’ve finished and immediately said thank you — to the person pacing, or cheering, holding the watch. It’s kind of a weird first reaction while gulping air. But that’s just where I am right now… overflowing with gratitude, and ready to go to battle.”
In March, Kate wrote on IG, “There is no better feeling than choosing your path, and then hitting full send toward your goals. I think I’m addicted.”
Kate took an opportunity, she took a risk, she weighed the options writing, “I knew at the time that going back to 800 training was a risk, as was starting with a new coach and team so late in the game. But I also knew that the greater risk was letting the opportunity pass untested.”
At the Olympic Trial in June, displayed a strong showing, but the US 800m women are the most impressive in history. All Kate Grace’s rounds were indicating her upward trajectory. Her time at the trials of 1:59.17 was just shy of her 2016 Olympic Trials winning time of 1:59.10.
While she was clearly ready to make an Olympic team, Kate did not wait to have processed her disappointment before making the decision with Coach Boss and her agent to compete at the Diamond League.
Olympic Trials: 7th in 1:59.17
Oslo 800m- 1:57.6 (PR and DL Win)
Stockholm 800m- 1:57.36 (PR)
Monaco 800m- 1:57.20 (PR)
Gateshead Mile- 4:27.20 (DL Win)
Eugene 800m- 1:57.6 (Runner up)
Today on the A to Z Running Podcast we are excited to have Kate Grace on the show to tell us how she has turned her disappointment around quickly to run the best races of her life at the Diamond League this summer.
So after all this talk of turning things around and seizing opportunities, if you want the same in your own running right now and aren’t sure what to do about it, check us out at atozrunning.com/coaching.