Home News Berlin Marathon winner Kipchoge looks ahead to Rio 2016 and beyond

Berlin Marathon winner Kipchoge looks ahead to Rio 2016 and beyond


Eliud Kipchoge is aiming to return to compete in the BMW Berlin Marathon in 2017 but the Kenyan’s foremost in the meantime is challenging for the Olympic title in Rio de Janeiro next summer Five months after defeating one of the finest fields ever assembled in the London Marathon, Eliud Kipchoge capped off a triumphant year with another commanding performance in Sunday’s BMW Berlin Marathon where he sped to a lifetime best and a world-leading time of 2:04:00.

 Reflecting on his career a few hours after his victory, Kipchoge emphasised that he and his long-term coach Patrick Sang regard maintaining mental freshness as even more important than physical conditioning.

Kipchoge is of course in superb shape and has demonstrated his ability for more than a decade in an international career which dates back to 2003 when he won the world 5000m title aged 18 in Paris.

But their philosophy offers a wider framework than a mantra of “Train Hard, Win Easy.”

“After Berlin, I need to prepare for Rio and plan but that is eleven months away so I would want to do another marathon, probably next spring. Eleven months without a marathon is too long, you need to test the body and that will tell the mind and body that another marathon, [the Olympic Marathon] is coming,” explained Kipchoge.

Simple enough in one sense and given his status, any major race promoter is likely to be checking their budget in a bid for his services. But this additional comment reveals the subtlety of approach by athlete and coach.

“The main thing is the mind, not the body,” said Kipchoge. “If you train for eleven months, the mind might get tired so it’s better for the body to get tired than the mind. So I’ll do another marathon before the Olympics.”

Kipchoge is aware selection for Rio 2016 is by no means a given but where he and coach Patrick Sang are confident is in the development of their training programme which has taken him from one of the best on the track to as strong as anyone in the marathon at present.

“I’ve been with my coach all my life as an athlete. In fact, we were neighbours – Patrick lived about one or two kilometres from me in the same village of Kapsisiywa [Nandi district]. When I was eight or nine, I’d see him training and began to notice him. Our plan was to run very well on the track, then we decided to turn to the road. The transition so far has been good and I can say our plans are up to date,” explained Kipchoge with a touch of understatement.

Whatever he may or may not achieve at the Olympics next year, Kipchoge has unfinished business in the German capital. He promises to return to the Berlin Marathon in 2017 with the aim of improving his time of 2:04:00, although without flapping insoles to add to the challenge.

Andy Edwards / Race News Service for WorldRunning.com

Photo courtesy of AFP / Getty Images

News source – worldrunning.com