MileSplit.us caught up with Jonathan Vitez, Haddonfield NJ, after his recent NJ MOC victory and State 3200 meter record of 8:58.81. Vitez and his Haddonfield teaammates will attempt to win the 4xmile and DMR at the NSIC meet this weekend.
MileSplit.us: 8:58 and a State record in the 3200. Did you think that was possible at the beginning of the indoor season?
Jonathan Vitez: To be honest, I didn't really even think about it those things before indoors. Sub-9 was always a goal of mine for high school, but my goals for indoors were really focused on relays. I guess I thought that if I ran really well I would have a shot a sub-9, but the state record never really crossed my mind. That race just set up perfectly and I was fortunate enough to feel good that day.
MileSplit.us: You had an amazing closing 800 off of a fast pace, but instead of breaking everybody, the race rolled right with you. Are you surprised/happy that NJ is so deep this year?
Jonathan Vitez: I am not suprised at how good New Jersey is this year. If you look at how good everyone was in cross country, its not suprising to see all that carry over into the indoor season. It's wild to see 9 kids go 9:13 or under indoors in New Jersey alone, and it should make for an exciting nationals and outdoor season.
MileSplit.us: Does breaking 9 for 3200 fill you with confidence for what is possible at Nationals?
Jonathan Vitez: It gives me a ton of confidence. That 8:58 was a huge pr for me and it proved to me that I was as fit as I've ever been. Going into nationals it makes me believe I can help our team run very fast on every relay we run. There is going to be some great competition there and it will sure make for some exciting races.
MileSplit.us: What is your plan for nationals? Team goals? Individual goals?
Jonathan Vitez: Our goal for nationals is to come home with two wins in the DMR and 4xmile. It is going to be extremely tough to do so because there is going to be some great competition in both events. There are a couple school and state records that would be cool to get, but our main focus is on winning. Hopefully if we win, the times will come. Individually, I just want to do whatever it takes to help our team win. Obviously I want to run fast, but if the race somehow turns tactical I wont mind running slow as long as we win.
MileSplit.us: Walk us through a typical hard workout day for you.
Jonathan Vitez: This winter has been kind of hard to get workouts in with a record setting snow fall in south jersey, but the toughest workout we did this winter was a ladder that went: 400, 600, 2x400, 3x300, 4x200. We warmed up 15 to 20 minutes before and then did sprint drills to get nice and loose. I think the times went 58, 1:28, 59, 59, 45,45,44, and then all 29s for the 200s. This was a hard workout so we got a good amount of rest between intervals, I don't remember the time exactly. Afterwards we went for a 20 minute cool down. Often times after practice we will try and get in the weight room, but after a workout like that everyone was content to call it a day.
MileSplit.us: What do you enjoy doing outside of competing and training?
Jonathan Vitez: Outside of running I enjoy playing other sports. Growing up I played soccer, basketball, and baseball every year, and I gave them all up for running in high school. I still enjoy playing those three sports and luckily our school has an intramural basketball league which still alows me to play somewhat competitively. I also enjoy just hanging out with my friends and family.
MileSplit.us: What do you see yourself achieving by the end of the outdoor season?
Jonathan Vitez: I really haven't made goals for the outdoor season yet, but I just hope everyone on our team can run fast. It would be great to put some fast relays together and just have everyone pr. I want to enjoy my last season of high school running with my friends and hopefully it will lead to some fast times.