Betsy Saina After Running 2:19:17 At The Tokyo Marathon, Now Third-Fastest American Woman Ever

"When I saw the finish line, I was like, ‘This one is one of the biggest wins I've ever had.’ I really appreciate the fact that I was able to put it together three weeks after the Olympic Trials."

A month after dropping out of the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials after about 21 miles, Betsy Saina made the decision to enter the 2024 Tokyo Marathon and it paid off massively.

Saina put together a very short two-week build-up and ended up finishing fifth in 2:19:17. It was a PR by more than two minutes and moved her to No. 3 on the U.S. all-time women's marathoning list behind Emily Sisson and Keira D'Amato.

In this episode, we talk about how she made the decision to race Tokyo, how she structured the training for it and why she believes her coach saying that she's got the fitness to run 2:17 someday soon. Plus, why she's got her sights set on representing the United States at the 2026 World Championships in Tokyo.

Host: Chris Chavez | ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@chris_j_chavez on Instagram⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

Guest: Betsy Saina | ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@sainabetsy on Instagram⁠⁠⁠⁠

Time Stamps:

04:03 How she’s feeling coming off her 2:19 performance at the Tokyo Marathon.

06:13 Her training heading into Tokyo + more on her race at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.

09:12 - When things went wrong for her in the U.S. Trials.

11:13 - Why she decided to race another marathon so quickly after the Trials.

16:56 - Her training between the Trials and Tokyo.

22:18 - Breaking down the last half of her race in Tokyo.

27:48 - Chasing after the American marathon record in Tokyo.

29:54 - Celebrating after the race + her post-race reflections.

34:38 - How her training has changed since becoming a mother.

42:26 - Her plans for future racing.

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Chris Chavez

Chris Chavez launched CITIUS MAG in 2016 as a passion project while working full-time for Sports Illustrated. He covered the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and grew his humble blog into a multi-pronged media company. He completed all six World Marathon Majors and is an aspiring sub-five-minute miler.

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