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February 16, 2022

Getting To Know Atlanta Track Club Elite’s Shane Streich (American Record Holder 1,000m)

Bryce Hoppel’s 1000m old American Record of 2:16.27 fell in Louisville this weekend at the hands of Shane Streich and his 2:16.16 victory. Initially, the race, hosted by the American Track League, was being set up for a different athlete to chase the time, and according to coach Amy Yoder Begley, it was almost scratched from the program entirely. That’s because the world hasn’t yet been introduced to the upcoming star that is Streich. After competing at the University of Minnesota through his undergraduate degree, he then continued his NCAA eligibility at Lipscomb University where he broke out to become an All-American at 800m with an 800m personal best of 1:45.84. Now competing in his rookie season with the Atlanta Track Club, we felt like it was time for fans to get to know the new kid on the block. Our conversation:

THE LAP COUNT: For those who may not be familiar with you prior to this weekend, who is Shane Streich? Give me your elevator pitch.

SHANE STREICH: I am a competitor. I like to go out there and compete, whether that’s against other athletes or the clock. I’m willing to take risks and believe deeply in my abilities. I’m not surprised at my success. It’s the result of patience and confidence in those abilities and in my coaches, Amy and Andrew Begley, plus Nick Polk, last year. It’s a brutal sport and it can suck dealing with pain in racing, but I enjoy finding what I’m capable of, physically and mentally.

THE LAP COUNT: If you were talking to fans who are looking for a new favorite pro runner, why should they root for you?

SHANE STREICH: I am somebody that isn’t a household name and that doesn’t bother me. I don’t do it for my own personal fame — I pursue the sport with the ups and downs because I have the desire to push myself each and every day. I think that’s relatable because people love challenging themselves in all avenues of life and this just so happens to be mine. I am the underdog. After adding a record to my name I may have more of a target on my back now. But someone is going to recognize Bryce Hoppel, Craig Engels or Clayton Murphy way before they do Shane Streich.

THE LAP COUNT: Tell me a little bit about your background as an athlete. Are you a track nerd like myself?

SHANE STREICH: I’m not really a track nerd in the sense of knowing all the little details and runners. Both of my parents ran collegiately, my sister ran, and my brother now runs at Lipscomb. I come from a family of runners and have been in the sport for some time, but it’s not something I live and breathe and have to watch every single race and know every statistic. Growing up in Minnesota near Drake, that’s where the nerdy side came out. I skipped prom my junior year to go watch the Drake Relays and I only went to prom my senior year because I had a girlfriend at the time.

THE LAP COUNT: Do you see yourself as more of an 800 or 1500 guy right now? It’s too bad there aren’t more 1000s! How do you approach the 1000 and what has training been like leading into that race?

SHANE STREICH: It’s basically like running an 800 except you miscounted and have an extra lap. At the moment I am more of an 800 guy, but to succeed at a high level in either the 8 or 15 you’re going to have to still be strong in the other one. I know I can run a faster mile than I did when I ran 3:57 at Millrose.

I come to the 800 from the strength side but I am not a high mileage guy. I usually hit 60 to 70 miles per week during base, which is my sweet spot. It’s a lot more intensity vs. volume. Easy days are pretty easy. Workouts are intense. There wasn’t a specific workout that told me I was ready, but momentum was moving in my direction.

THE LAP COUNT: How do you bounce back after a breakthrough race like that? I know in my experience it can be tough to recalibrate your mind with all the excitement.

SHANE STREICH: I try to give myself about a day, especially after a breakthrough, to process and enjoy the moment. I also try to recognize and connect with those who have supported me throughout the journey. Then going back to that structure that was in place prior makes it easier to hone in and set yourself up to take advantage of those opportunities that come next.

THE LAP COUNT: Speaking of that, what comes next for you and your teammates? The Lap Count is admittedly big Atlanta Track Club fans. I think you guys have figured the business model out. 

SHANE STREICH: I’m entered in the 800 and 1500 at the US Champs with the goal to make my first World team. Then after we are possibly doing a dual in Chicago against The District TC — a straight-up 800 with a pacer, set up for fast times to see what we can put down.

It’s super cool to be a part of the elite team. It exists within the organization and creates the opportunity to serve the local community with a greater purpose than just being a pro runner. I think that beats only having a pro team — there’s more to the sport and life than just running.

Photo by Kevin Morris/@kevmofoto

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