Amy Cragg entered the professional marathon scene with a strong second place finish at the 2011 LA Marathon. Still holding on to that Marathon PR of 2:27:03, Cragg has spent the past six years building a consistent and successful training plan that focuses on the bigger picture. Longevity in running is imperative to successful racing, and Cragg has mastered the art of respecting the distance, taking it one mile at a time. The two-time Olympian shares why she’s feeling the best she has in her career and what she’s doing to reach her full potential.
You just PR’d at the Japan Half Marathon, congrats! How did you feel during this race?
I felt amazing in the Marugame Half Marathon. I couldn’t believe how fast the race was going by and I felt like I was in complete control. There was an incredible sense of flow. There have only been a handful of times in my career I felt this good so I knew I had to take advantage and try to run a PR.
This was your first race since Rio — what was different about this race and your training?
I am currently in the base phase of my training, which is fairly similar to what I did before Rio. However, my focus this spring is the NYC Half Marathon (March 19th) and some track races, so I will do a bit more speed from here on out than I did last year.
Do you like half or full marathon distance best?
I love the full marathon distance. It’s so grueling and there are months of training on the line. You learn something about yourself every time you race one. The half distance has never had the same hold on me but it’s been a fun change and I’m starting to like it more and more.
Speaking of Rio: How did you celebrate after the Olympics?
My husband and I boarded a plane to Mexico and spent 10 days on the beach. I love it there. It’s exactly what we needed and we came back refreshed and ready to start working again.
What motivates you to keep running?
Tokyo 2020! I know I can be better. The day I stop thinking that will be the day I retire, but right now I know I have more inside me and I need to find out exactly what that is.
What are you looking forward to in 2017?
I am really excited about getting back on the track! I have some unfinished business in the five and ten.
If you were to pick one song to describe the feeling you have at the last mile of a race, what would it be?
It depends on the race. Sometimes it’s “Eye of the Tiger” and other times it’s “Livin’ on a Prayer!”
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