College Bust - Could I still run fast post collegiately?
i didn't get into serious distance running until college. i finished 0/4 track and 3/5 XC seasons in good health, was an injury mess (3 knee surgeries, never more than 6 months of consistent training, etc). This was at a good D3 program but i was nowhere near your level of talent (4:28 mile, 25:16 8K).
5 years later & nearing the finish of my PhD program i decided to get serious again (stayed in shape, but i'd call it "running" and not "training") because 10 years from now i didn't want to look back with regret & wonder, "damn, how fast could i have ran if i trained hard & stayed healthy?". last fall marked my first full year of injury-free training EVER, a year in which i ran PRs at 800, mile, 5K, 10K, and a 1:08 half debut. gonna tear up the track one more spring, then turn the focus to chasing an OT qualifier in the HM/M. i just turned 29.
if you're thinking is "28 is too old to run fast", stop. it's your prime. you can improve well into your 30s. people get LAZY before they get old...most 28 year old guys are out of shape not because they are 'old', it's because they are so busy with career, wife, kids, social life, etc. that they don't make the time to take care of themselves and/or commit to training. which is fine if it isn't a priority for them.
so if you make up your mind and say "i am going to do this, i am going to run times x,y,z", you can. age is not holding you back, it's whether or not you are willing to put in 2,3,4+ years of consistent, smart training. if you make training a priority in life, you will run better than before. it's up to you - good luck!
Thanks for the response. Just your one story motivated me. I think the issue I have had is getting back in 420 and 1530 shape, but then not being able to bump myself to that next level again. Whether its motivation, work ethic, other life duties, or knowing how to get there...I have just had trouble getting to the level I know I still can outside of High School or College. I guess I just need to realize I can do it and make it happen.
Not at all. I ran 4:29 for 1600, 9:43 for 3200, and just over 15:30 5k in XC for high school. I also spent a lot of time sidelined with injuries in college. Left college with a mile PR of 4:29, 3k of 8:57, 5k of 15:21, and 10k of 32:10. Not what I planned. After some time off (2 years) I was slow again. I ran a 5k in 19 min and it hurt real bad. I didn't like it so I started training more seriously. I've continued getting better over the last 8 years. Last year I ran a 14:48 5k, 8:38 3k, and 31:00 10k. This past fall I ran a 23:51 5 mile a month before my marathon attempt. Unfortunately I became I'll the week of the race and DNF, but I'm planning on running a spring marathon under 2:22. Basically, if you want it bad enough to put the time in it will come.
Bad as Naomi Russell and 33 with new PRs, just curious what are your current situations? Family or no family, easily able to make training a main focus or squeeze in runs after work, training solo or with a group, and lastly what are your occupations?
I'm a soon to be college grad finding myself in a similar situation. I want to continue on and take it to that next level but am trying to see how everyone else's situations are and how they manage.
Same thing happend to me, 4:15 and 1:54 in HS and never ran faster than 4:20 and 1:59 in college. Finally got my achilles surgery at age 29 and finally can train again. Already ran a 67 half and 14:45 5k, and going to go for some mile races this spring.
Found that after all that time the speed was still there (still can easily do the 23 sec 200 workouts) and am better at longer runs too. So go for it, but since you will probably now have a job you have to get used to getting up and running before work to get doubles in.
Shit, it's still fun to kill it in races.
Ciaran O'Lionaird had a similar issue. Stud in high school, constantly injured first four years of college, and then big breakthrough last year of college. He contemplated quitting, but maintained one year of health and ran 3:52.