Mary Keitany eager to test her comeback in New York, A view from Kenya, by Justin Lagat

Mary Keitany, photo by Justin Lagat

Justin Lagat wrote this about the photo above: "About the Pictures, in front wearing green is Charles Koech (Keitany's husband) behind Mary Keitany is a pace maker in their management who paced Filomena Cheyech (Commonwealth champion) in Paris this year."

Justin wrote the Mary Keitany piece after meeting with her during her preparations for TCS New York City Marathon on November 2, 2014. Justin thinks she will run very fast! 

Mary Keitany eager to test her comeback in New York, by Justin Lagat

New York City marathon will be her first marathon after her maternity leave. She has come back impressively with a great run and winning at the Bupa Great North Run event, but she still is not very sure how her body will respond to the 42km distance.

"Half marathon is different from the full marathon and I cannot say that I am using my success at the Bupa Great Run to mean that I am necessarily in great shape to win the New York marathon," Keitany told RunBlogRun in Iten, Kenya. However, one thing we can be sure is that she now feels ready to race and is confident about the training she has done so far.

She says that the reason she is going for the New York Marathon is because it was the major city marathon that was going to happen last in the year and would give her enough time to still train and built her confidence more after being out of training for such a long time.

"I do not need to put myself in any pressure being my first marathon after my long break. All I want is to see how I can now measure myself up against the elite runners and the former defending champions that will be there in the race," said Keitany, sounding as though she really won't mind any position she places there. She has no other specific goals in New York, besides going there and trying to win.

But, the hard training she is currently doing points out that she is serious about staging a great comeback and the women's race promises to be a great run there.

She believes that it is through hard training and discipline that she has been able to accomplish so much in running. And as she said this, I remembered watching her earlier on while doing some intervals on the track being paced by her husband and another male pacesetter from their Gianni De Madonna management and this point was driven home very well. 

In fact, at some point during the training, the pacesetter could hardly keep up with her pace despite him being one of the most experienced pacers who have been doing the job for over three years now at the management's training camp in Iten.

"There is no way you can be lazy in training and still hope to become a champion like other championships. It is all about hard training and discipline. It is also about setting goals and focusing on them. I myself had been admiring Tegla Lorupe and Paul Tergat running in my younger days and had always wanted to be like them one day," she said.

While she was away on her maternity leave, Florence Kiplagat broke her half marathon world record. I asked her what she is going to do about it now that she is back into competitive running and this is what she had to say.

"I will be keen on trying to reclaim that record, but it will all depend on the schedules I will be having from next year. I can't say when, but I will plan that as from next year," said Keitany.

After the interview, she happened to visit RunBlogRun's website while I was still there beside her and besides getting excited by many topics on the site and praising RunBlogRun for always providing timely and great information on running, one title particularly caught her full attention. It was a story about Paula Radcliff talking on Dennis Kimetto's world record.

"What does she say about her world record?" She asked as she quickly skimmed through the article to see if Radcliff had said anything on that.

Apparently, she never found what she was looking for, but when she added a comment about the world record that is recognized for women running alone being 2:17.42, together with the facial expression she was having, and the avid interest on the topic, one thing dawned on me: I was most definitely talking with the next women's world marathon record holder!

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