Our newest Athletes Exclusive is with Amanda Paulin. Amanda is an upcoming middle distance runner who has her eyes set on next years Commonwealth Games. Athletics Exclusive was able to ask her some questions.
Lachlan – What made you start athletics?
Amanda – I grew up around athletes. My dad was a runner, and so were most of our family friends, so ever since I was born I was attending athletics meets at Olympic Park, or the Stawell Gift, and at other places around Victoria, so I basically never considered a lifestyle that didn’t involve athletics . My parents didn’t let me start Little Athletics though until I reached the under 9 age group, but as soon as I did, I was off to the track to register.
Lachlan – You’ve been doing athletics for such a long time, how did you keep yourself motivated when things got hard?
Amanda – I’ve been through periods where I haven’t been as involved in athletics as I am now, and although it is good to have other things in life to focus on, I’ve never felt I’ve reached my full potential and this is something I always try and strive towards. I try not to lose sight of the big picture, which is my dream to represent Australia at an Olympic Games, which I think is the ultimate motivator.
Lachlan – What advice would you give to someone who is looking to start to dedicate more time to athletics?
Amanda – Patience is a virtue. Achieving your long term goals generally doesn’t happen overnight and there is a reason they are called ‘long-term goals’. It takes smaller steps and time in order to reach them, so have short term as well as long term plans in place which will gradually build you up towards being the athlete you aspire to be. Short cuts generally cause injuries.
Also, surround yourself with people that motivate and support you. Positive environments which include people you are excited to work with and trust will only make the sport more enjoyable.
Lachlan – I’ve known you for quite a while and have seen you train for quite a number of years, can you explain what you do outside of your normal training hours, that you feel really benefit your athletic development?
Amanda – Recently I have had a few set backs with injuries, such as hamstring tendonitis which came about just when I started running 1500m PBs in 2012, and I also developed a femoral stress reaction this year. It was a bit of a shock to the system for me because I’ve never really been injured before. It did signal to me though that I couldn’t continue to try and increase my training load without addressing some areas of weakness. So I now have an individually tailored strength program which is running specific and designed to be as efficient as possible. I also think continually checking in with my physio and having regular massages is an important change Ive made for injury prevention. I also think one of the best things for athlete development is to speak to and learn from other athletes who have competed at the level you wish to reach one day, and take on board any advice which you believe will benefit you and help you to get to where you want to go.
Lachlan – Can you run through a weekly schedule for yourself during a track season?
- Monday – 30-40min jog + gym session
- Tuesday – Track Session, normally longer reps e.g. 800-1600m reps with short or rolling breaks
- Wednesday – 60min jog + gym session
- Thursday – Track Session, shorter/faster reps e.g. 200-500m reps at race pace or faster
- Friday – 30min jog + pilates
- Saturday – threshold/fartlek run
- Sunday – 80min jog
This is an ideal week, and something I’m building towards coming back from injury. At the moment my program doesn’t involve much speed/track work.
Lachlan – To finish off, have you set any goals for the upcoming season?
Amanda – Ideally, I would love to make the Commonwealth Games team, so a lot of my goals are tailored towards running races and times to get me as close as possible to qualifying.