The recent USA National Indoor Championships were held March 3-5 in Albuquerque, NM, home to the University of New Mexico Lobos. With the London World Championships coming up in August, this event was a springboard into the outdoor season with valuable championship racing experience for the best athletes across the country.
ElliptiGO supports hundreds of athletes in the sport to help them reach these levels of competition healthy and ready to compete at their highest potential. In last week’s championships, there were great results from these athletes and teams.
Among ElliptiGO programs, the Brooks Beasts Track Club was the best represented with nine athletes competing, seven of which had top five finishes:
- Cas Loxsom: 2nd – 600m
- Brannon Kidder: 2nd – 1000m
- Garrett Heath: 3rd – Mile
- Hannah Fields: 3rd – 1000m
- Shaquille Walker: 3rd – 600m
- Katie Mackey: 4th – 2 Mile
- Drew Windle: 5th – 1000m
Under the coaching guidance of Danny Mackey, the Beasts TC began integrating ElliptiGO training in 2012, starting with 1500m-5000m specialist and wife, Katie Mackey. One of the most significant results of her ElliptiGO integration came in 2014 when Katie was out for a couple of months with an Achilles injury. After a long stretch of no running, Katie recorded a huge 20-second PR in the 5000m (15:04).
To get a sense of how important that was to her, watch the interview here on Flotrack. Amidst that emotional interview, she noted, “for all those young girls out there that might be dealing with injuries, and might miss a couple months …really, with cross-training, you can get it done.”
The Nike Bowerman Track Club and HOKA NJNY Track Club also made their presence known, each with 7 entries in these Championships. The big highlight from BTC was a 1-2 finish in the Mile from Shelby Houlihan and Colleen Quigley. Houlihan then doubled back to win the 2 Mile the next day. This was particularly impressive considering Albuquerque is at an altitude of 5500 feet, thereby affecting the distance events and efforts drastically.
Quigley and Houlihan, who competed at the Rio Olympics in the 3000m Steeplechase and 5000m respectively, were stepping down in distance for these events, but will likely return to those longer events in the outdoor season.
Quigley’s journey to becoming an Olympian was not a smooth one as she unfortunately had a femoral stress injury just 10 weeks before the Olympic Trials. Through cross-training, she was still able to build fitness and actually ran a personal best time in the Steeplechase at the Trials, her first steeple race of the year. As she and her BTC teammates learn their varying limits, they don’t want to be cutting it that close again, so they now emphasize larger volumes of cross-training year-round and believe they’ll reach even better results by staying healthy.
Read more about how Quigley and other athletes punched their ticket to Rio with the help of ElliptiGO training.
We also congratulate Clayton Murphy on his victory in the 1000m, winning in 2:18.60, which is the fastest time in the world this year. Murphy, who is still in college at the University of Akron, gave up his senior year of eligibility to turn pro, and then produced a bronze medal in the 800m at the Rio Olympics. Murphy began using the ElliptiGO this past fall and is certainly having a great start to his 2017 season, which also included a 3:54 Mile at the Millrose Games.
Another notable individual is Lauren Johnson, who was also competing in the 1000m. Johnson finished 2nd in a tight battle with eventual winner Charlene Lipsey, running a personal best time of 2:38.33. Johnson surged into the spotlight in 2015, qualifying for the World Championships in the 1500m after being a basketball player and 400m hurdler in college. Since then, she has had great success over the last couple of years, including a US #1 time in the Mile (4:25.04) in 2016, and now her highest championship finish ever to start the 2017 season.
There were many more outstanding performances throughout the meet from non-affiliated athletes as well as from the 20+ ElliptiGO-supported training groups. In addition to the groups listed above, we saw strong representation from Furman Elite, Big Bear TC, Texas Elite TC, Team NB Boston, Atlanta TC Elite, Hudson Elite, Oregon TC Elite, Team USA MN, Strava TC, ALTIS World, HOKA NAZ Elite, Team Run Eugene, NE Distance, Rogue AC, Santa Barbara TC, and SRA Elite.
We know there are big goals ahead for these athletes, and we are happy to be a significant component of their training regimen throughout their journey. We look forward to supporting those dreams in the seasons ahead by helping them stay healthy and training at the highest levels of the sport.