Kim Smith is the New Zealand record holder at 3,000m, 5,000m and 10,000
meters outdoor. In 2010, Kim added Kiwi records at the half marathon and
marathon. Her first marathon, a miscue after having only trained for a few weeks
after injuries and sickness, was NY in 2009.
Fully prepared, Kim Smith ran a strong race at the 2010 Virgin London Marathon,
running a fine 2:25:21 for eighth place! Afterwards, Kim Smith told RBR, she was
“happy but tired.” from the race. Pretty normal reaction.
We caught up with Kim last week, and thanks to the wonders of the I-pod, sent her questions, to which she quickly responded. Here is that interview:
Start of 2010 Virgin London Marathon (note Kim Smith is ninth from left, in black), photo by PhotoRun.net.
primary school, once a year, there was a cross-country race for the 8, 9
and 10 year olds so I ran my first cross country race when I was 8, I
guess. I remember beating all the girls by a long way and most of the
boys except for a handful of them. So I think that was when I found out
that running was something I was good at.
love New Zealand so I’m a little biased, but I think it’s one of the
best places in the world to run. The climate is pretty great for
training as it’s so moderate and it really is a beautiful country.
been coached by Ray since 2002. I’ve improved so much under his
coaching. He knows me so well now so he knows what makes me run well,
how much I can handle, and how much I can race so it works really well.
A lot of college coaches don’t want to coach post collegiately but Ray
really loves coaching. His job is coaching at the college so that takes
up most of his time but I don’t need a coach to be at my workouts all
the time or travel to races with me so it works well.
Kim Smith, NCAA XC, 2004, photo by PhotoRun.net.
RBR, 4. What is the difference in your training now that you are pro?
a whole lot really. I think being consistent in training and not
getting injured makes you improve. I’m doing more miles now and longer
workouts but have worked up to this very gradually. I still pretty much
do the same stuff I did in college though. I obviously have more time
now to rest which is nice but it’s also a lot more stressful as it’s
your full time job to run so you think about it more.
didn’t have a whole lot of time to train for New York after Beijing
and kept getting sick in the build up. I’m not sure why, I think I
must have been tired. Trying to train for a marathon on top of that
was just too hard on my body or something. I ended up getting sick
again a couple of days before the marathon. Ray told me not to even
try to run but it’s hard to not try after training for it. I felt
terrible from the start so it put me off the marathon for a while.
RBR, 6. You have raced well in World Cross and you have had some incredible races on the track,as you have Kiwi records at 3,000m, 5,000m and 10,000 m, is that correct?
and after this year I have the half marathon and marathon also. I don’t
like cross country running very much but have raced decently at it.
Cross country just hurts too much.
Kim Smith, Boston Mayor’s Cup XC, 2005, photo by PhotoRun.net.
was disappointing, as I was in a race for the bronze and ended up fifth. But, it did show me I could compete with the best and gave me a
different mindset for future races.
Kim Smith, 2010 Virgin London Marathon, photo by
RBR, 8. Okay, you had a superb race in London this year, tell us about that?
was happy with the race, I think it was a solid first one out (I don’t
really count New York) Its now given me more confidence for the
distance. I was so afraid of the marathon I was scared to push it too
much. Now I know I can run the distance I hope next time to run faster
and race to win.
RBR, 10. What was the biggest mistake you made running in college?
don’t think I made too many mistakes in college. I kind of had a dream
college running experience while at Providence. When I first came to
Providence I didn’t think I would be winning and breaking records so it
was such a fun time. I definitely didn’t take running as seriously and
probably went out a bit much but that’s what college is for!
to worry too much if you aren’t running as well as you want as a
freshman. It takes time to get used to a new coach and new environment.
Just relax and have fun with it.
Kim Smith vs. Shalane Flanagan, Rome GL 2007,
photo by PhotoRun.net.
RBR, 12. What is your favorite workout?
are hard so I don’t like any but When truing for a 10km I like doing 3
by 3 km cause if I can do 3 in close to 9 minutes I know I’m ready to
RBR, 13. Okay, you know what the follow up is? your least favorite workout?
really hate doing long run tempo runs for the marathon. I find them
mentally very hard. My boyfriend did a few with me and after a a mile I
would tell him I had to stop. He would yell at me to stop being a wimp
and then I’d be fine.
RBR, 14. Do you train with anyone?
run a lot of my regular runs with the girls in my training group. My
workouts were mostly done by myself for the marathon. We are all
getting ready for such different things. I hope to do some workouts
with the other girls next month before getting into marathon training
RBR, 15. Where will we see you race this summer?
not sure yet but I think I’m going to do a fall marathon. Straight
after London I couldn’t wait to do another one. I will do some short
summer road races and probably a half marathon somewhere.
RBR, 16. What is your favorite distance to race?
really enjoy the half marathon, it’s not as intense as the 10,000 or as
painful and hard as a marathon. It took me a long time to like road
running. Now, I really like it and am enjoying running on the surface.
RBR, 17. Do you have a favorite race that showed what you can really do?
the 2004 indoor NCAA championships I won the 3000 and 5000 and broke
both the NCAA records. After that everything changed and I started to
believe I could be good at this.
RBR, 18. What do you love about our sport?
Kim Smith: I like that it is such an individual sport. If you run well, it’s because of what you did, and if you don’t, it’s your fault. You don’t have anyone else to rely on or blame but yourself.