Thursday, January 27, 2011

2010 Highlight: Rebecca Donaghue

Rebecca Donaghue had an injury-abbreviated 2010 — certainly a disappointment for someone who made such major strides the previous year. However, she found some positives  off the track — on the roads, and in mentoring one of America’s best up-and-coming high-school half-milers…

What would you call the main highlight of 2010 for you, professionally or personally?
I would have to say one of the highlights of 2010 would be setting a road mile pr of 4:34 out in St. Charles, IL. at the Inaugural Foot Mechanics Mile. It was a seven second pr from the track and I had tons of fun both in the race and with all the festivities of the event. I was also pleased to set a 10,000m track pr at the Payton Jordan Cardinal Invite. Even though I was shooting for a much faster time I walked away learning a lot more about the event on the track vs. the road and can’t wait to apply that this year.

There were also some highlights in my 6th year of coaching at State College High. Our top athlete, Chloe Schmidt, defended her Indoor 800m State title and then placed 3rd at the Nike Indoor Nationals. She followed that up with her first ever outdoor PIAA State title in the 800m, running an impressive 2:09.9 and then coming back just a couple hours later to place 2nd in the 1600m with a 4:55.0. She finished off her season at the New Balance Nationals posting a 2:09.8  and placing 9th overall. I’m also very excited with our 4th place team finish at the PIAA State Cross Country meet. We turned quite a few heads with that one and will be returning all seven next year.

What were some of the challenges you faced this year, and what was your approach to overcoming them?
I definitely faced some adversity in 2010. An injury to my achilles slowed my progress and would later keep me on the sideline from July to mid fall. It was a tough one to accept after such a successful 2009 but after struggling with injury from 1997-2004 I knew how to handle things. Lots of patience and being diligent about keeping up with rehab work and treatment on a daily basis has strengthened me one step further both mentally and physically.

What are you looking forward to in 2011 — both in terms of specific races, and also overall goals?
I’m certainly hungry to get back out there and race hard in 2011. I plan to hit all of the disciplines; track, roads, and cross country, much like I did in 2009. A major step in my career will be tackling my first marathon. The plans are in the works and will entail continuing to increase mileage and racing longer distances throughout the year. However, I’m always game to a 1500 or even 800 every once in a while for training purposes.

(L to R: Rebecca and her State College Girls Cross Country team celebrate taking 4th at State / competing at USATFs)
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One Response to “2010 Highlight: Rebecca Donaghue”

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by RunBlogRun, KIMbia Athletics. KIMbia Athletics said: Rebecca Donaghue: Super athlete, super coach… [...]