2012 Bank of America Chicago Marathon: Dathan Ritzenhein runs 2:07.47! by Larry Eder

Dathan Ritzenhein, Wesley Korir, photo by Karen Locke

Dathan Ritzenhein, coming off the best year of training he has had in years, ran a personal best of 2:07.47, a pb of two minutes, eight seconds. Hitting the half way point in 1:03.25, Ritz nailed it, running the second half in 1:03.22, with the 2:07.47 his true reward. 

Here is how Dathan recounted his race. Tired, but  elated, Dathan recalled the day: 

" it was great, great conditions, great pacing all the way to 30k, felt amazing to 35k, very even paced, thought I had a good shot at mid 2:06s, turning back, with wind in my face, hard enough, feeling it, feeling so good early on, from 25-35k, I had planned to take some extra gel, I was able to hold it together pretty good, so I was happy, big step forward, good healthy year. One more healthy year, and I could be good. 


Dathan leading Olympic Trials 10,000 meters, photo by PhotoRun.net

When asked about Alberto Salazar's comments, as Dathan had broken Salazars marathon personal best:

"Alberto told me that my time would convert on New York's course to 2:08.20, then said, it was total crap and he was joking. If you did not good today, Alberto said that would tell you he was a crappy coach, but truth is, Alberto would never give up on me. This was  a huge step forward, just thrilled and happy for the sport." 

How does this fit into his plan? 

"Today, I just made a big step in right direction. Lot more in tank. Alberto Salazar noted that Dathan runs 110 miles a week, if I can just continue to train like this. "

On how Dathan trained after the London Olympics, and how light his training is, relative to other marathoners:

"I did the best I could, I had to go back to do the speed, averaged with days off, maybe 90-95 miles a week, volume fairly high, my mechanics feel very good, keep that intensity there, I want to have a great cross country season, and come back in fall in Fall marathon next year."


Dathan Ritzenhein, Hengelo, photo by PhotoRun.net

Will he continue to venture on the track? 

"I will stay on the track, I want to traini with the best two ten kilo in the world. It will be that much more beneficial for me. Hopefully I will have all of that strength and speed. 

Next year, I will do a whole track season. That was the thing for me, 2.09.55 to 2.04, was just not possible. I cut that goal  in half, at one point, fairly close, only five or ten seconds back, Jason asked, you want to catch them, we were already a little fast. So, then, next year, that is now the window now."


Dathan, after 10,000 meter final, Olympic Trials, photo by PhotoRun.net

On making the 10,000 meter team on Team USA, did he regret not running Olympic marathon? 

"I am blessed that I made the team. Olympics transcend team. It also reinforced the need to come back to the track. Alberto and myself think same when it comes to training. I needed to come back to fast stuff.  I see the results, training was easier, after quarters in 54. The season worked for the best with the long track development. I still think I have a lot of goals to hit. 

To be successful at the marathon,  have to do a ton of volume, if you faster you run, the more powerful your mechanics are going to be. I used to be person who believe in long everything, make career, my body feels better than it did five years ago." 

Dathan Ritzenhein now sees his future as a complete distance runner: cross country, track and marathon. For Dathan to be successful, training with the best 10,000 meter runners in the world, Mo Farah and Galen Rupp, will open even more doors in 2013. 


Dathan Ritzenhein, photo by PhotoRun.net

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