MileSplit.us had a recent chat with Colby Alexander, Strongsville OH, on his recent indoor success and what to expect from the talented miler. Colby smashed his indoor PR of 4:25.99 with a 4:12.25 to win the UK mile.
MileSplit.us: You have had two successful outings in the mile this season. A 4:14.30 and more recently a 4:12.25 at the UK Invite. What type of workouts have you put in to get these results?
Colby Alexander: I've focused more on strength this winter. Mostly threshold 1000's and some pace work. With the snow and weather in the Cleveland area I've been limited to finding dry streets. My grandma's street is a 400 meter slight uphill and its often plowed, so I have done a lot of loops there. I've also done a lot of core work and a weekly long run. Im doing more more mileage than last year, about 35 miles a week. Consistent weekly threshold runs and building up my long run even in really crappy weather. My teammates and I did a few runs in the deep snow on a golf course nearby. I was fortunate to get on the track twice when I visited The University of Georgia and University of Oregon. We've learned to be creative and tough in workout planning in Northeast Ohio.
MileSplit.us: What was your goal for the mile indoors or have you already met it?
Colby Alexander: My indoor mile PR was 4:25 so I was going to be happy with anything under that this indoor season. I wasn't expecting to run this fast this early! I haven't done any speed work besides strides and accells before workouts. I felt so good in my first race, I was so surprised. My goal now is to break 4:10 indoors but I only have 1 more race to do it.
MileSplit.us: You ended the XC season 38th at Foot Locker nationals. How satisfied were you with that performance?
Colby Alexander: Not satisfied at all. I wanted to rerun it! My goal was All American but my race plan backfired on me. If I would have run the same race plan as FL Regional then I would have been in much better position to get top 15. I learned the better the field, the more aggressive I have to run.
MileSplit.us: Are you running in a national meet in March? What goals have you set for yourself?
Colby Alexander: I probably won't run at the National meet but thats not 100% yet. My main goal is to stay healthy for outdoors where I hope to go under 4:05. I think I have a lot of room for improvement because we haven't started any speedwork and I haven't raced any 400's or 800's. Those really get me faster. (Editor's note: Colby informed us that he will be running at NIN on March 12th-13th.)
MileSplit.us: What will your focus be in the outdoor season? What times are you hoping to hit?
Colby Alexander: My focus is going to be the 1600. I want my school record which is 4:10.65. My goal in the 800 is to break 1:50 and in the 400 to break 50. I am hoping to get in a couple two miles. I know I am WAY faster than my PR which is 9:42. I just haven't run any competitve two miles where I've been in shape to run one. In the past I've run one two mile a season. Its hard to run the two when I'm on the 4x4.
MileSplit.us: What do you enjoy away from the track?
Colby Alexander: I play baseball with my friends in my backyard. We have a football field and track in our backyard. We set up a home run derby field. The only person that has beaten me at it is Donny Roys (Ohio State). Along with my track goals, beating Donny at home run derby is a major one. I like to play video games with my friends too. We're pretty intense FIFA players. I also like to just hang out with my friends or my brothers and sister. I go see movies a lot too.
MileSplit.us: What are you looking forward to most about high school graduation and college life at Oregon?
Colby Alexander: The most exciting thing for me is looking forward to seeing how fast I can run at a place that is famous for producing great middle distance and distance runners. I'm also looking forward to living in Eugene. Eugene, more than any city in America, appreciates distance running. I can't wait to run in front of thousands of knowledgeable track fans at Hayward Field. I can't wait to be coached by one of the most successful coaches of all time, Vin Lananna. I'll also have the benefit of being coached by Andy Powell. Being a sub-four minute miler, Andy knows what it takes to break 4:00. Maybe the thing I'm looking forward to most is eating at Track Town Pizza!