The Qatar Experience: Team USA in DOHA

Wow, so where should I begin? The last few days have been a roller coaster of emotions. Winning the World 50k Championships has been a dream come true and something I believed I could do, but never really put it into perspective how difficult it would be and the obstacles to overcome. Let’s start with the traveling to Doha…

I drove an hour to the Cleveland Hopkins Airport to embark on the journey to Doha, Qatar. I’ve never traveled internationally, and I was doing it alone. I really wasn’t to worried about it, and figured I’d just keep to myself and things would be fine. I didn’t realize how taxing it really is on the body traveling so long though.

My first flight was Cleveland to Atlanta, and that was simple. Next was the long one, Atlanta to Amsterdam. It was about 8 hours and I was stuffed in the middle of the economy seating like a piece of sausage squished between two slices of an english muffin. It was cramped and extremely uncomfortable, but hey I got two pretty good meals out of it! I didn’t sleep at all, something about sitting straight up in close proximity to others makes sleep unappealing and difficult.

I arrived in Amsterdam around 6AM Amsterdam time and my next flight to Doha wasn’t for another 4 hours. I walked around not doing much, bought a panini and a water, and that was about it. The water was carbonated!!! ( Made the mistake on the way back too. UGH ) So I took my good ol’ time drinking that puppy.

Next I flew from Amsterdam to Doha. This is where I finally met some of my USA teammates who were on that same flight. I met Camille, Zach, and Geoff. You couldn’t ask for better teammates, some of the friendliest most down-to-earth people you’ll ever meet. I pretty much slept this whole flight though, I was tired.

We arrived in Doha finally, some 24 hours later. We departed the plane and made our way to immigration. Zach forgot his glasses on the plane though and decided to backtrack to try and pick them up, his effort was futile, and the glasses were never seen again. We had a little issue getting our visas, but finally figured it out and paid 100 Qatari for them. (Not so bad, only like 27 dollars). We were finally in DOHA

We got our luggage, took some pictures with what seemed like Doha dignitaries. Then we had a taxi van waiting for our arrival and made our way to the hotel.

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torchhhh.jpg(I have cool pictures of the Torch myself, but those couple aren’t downloading)

That torch looking building right above was our hotel. It was the most beautiful hotel I’ve ever stayed at. My roommate was USA teammate Tyler Andrews who runs for Hoka One One. We use the same running log site, and I’ve always kept track of his training, but it was finally nice to meet him face-to-face. Tyler is awesome, and it was pretty cool rooming with another guy that works just as hard as me, possibly even harder! Our hotel had a great view of the whole city, and we could change the color of it to anything we wanted. When we first walked in though this was the color….room-prom     (Not our room, our room had two beds!! Same layout though, my picture won’t upload)

We also had full board at a 5 star restaurant inside called the Aladdin room. Probably named that because of the flying carpets on the ceiling.

aladdin 2

My sleep the whole time divided into two 4 hour naps pretty much every day at the same time. I was usually getting to bed around 11pm, but waking up at 3. 11pm in Doha is 3pm in Ohio. So it was just weird and I never acclimated. The next nap was a little after breakfast from 9AM to 1PM.

I spent a lot of time going to the amazing mall that Doha has. There is a walkway to the mall (I’ll post a picture) from our hotel, and it’s pretty sweet! The mall had everything, and it was GINORMOUS. It had a cinema, an ice rink, a grocery store, laser tag (Laser Wars), a canal with a gondola, and a theme park!! It was the coolest thing…I walked around it a lot, and still don’t know if I saw everything.

Wednesday night Susan Dun, who was our team leader, and I hope is always our team leader for possible future events, invited us over to her home for a taco night. She lives in Doha and is literally the nicest, sweetest, most amazing person you’ll ever come across. She was so extremely prepared for this event and blew us away with her dedication to every detail. Honestly, without her this would never have happened the way it did. I can’t thank her and the whole support team enough. Her neighbor Craig was also on the support team, he road his bike with us for a run, drove us around, helped at the aid station, and did so much more. It was a sacrifice they made that I don’t think I could ever repay.

Anyways, we had a taco night at Susan’s where we ate and drank and talked race strategy and got to meet our individual aid station person. Mine was Joyce, a Judo champ, and a very nice lady. She took care of me during the race.

Friday was the race. I feel like you’ve all heard enough about that from media outlets, to my running log, word of mouth, etc etc, so I’m not going to talk about the race details. The Men took home a silver team medal, and I won the individual race over Kenyan’s who got 2nd,3rd, and 4th place. Camille being her beastly self, won her 2nd world title this year in the women’s race. The whole team ran hard though, and did the best they could on that day, and I’m more excited now about our friendships than the race itself. It was so cool being on a team again and getting to represent the USA.

openingC50kteamusa#1team50kWkidopeningC50kteamprecer(above pictures are from the opening ceremony, the day before the race.)

The awards ceremony the day after the race was pretty cool. First though, in the morning we attended a local 5k and 10k and took pictures and signed bibs. It was a lot of fun! Camille and I then had to do some press stuff. I talked to like 7 different reporters and then Camille and I got golf carted to a mosque to take more pictures. It was pretty surreal, and a lot of fun.

At the awards ceremony it took forever to get food, and I was starving. It was worth the wait though hearing your national anthem go off. I can’t believe that moment happened to me, and I’m going to cherish it forever. After the individual awards, it was so awesome to stand up on the podium with Team USA for the team awards. We all worked so hard for this and now that it was finally over, I couldn’t believe how far we had come as runners, teammates, and most of all, friends. awardawards 2(sorry about blocking you on this last one Susan)

My flight home was Sunday at 12:05. I left the hotel via bus with Zach and Camille. Typical Geoff was late for our departure and had to catch a ride with Nadeem. Cmon, Geoff! I tried to get the bus to wait, because I was there at 9 and Camille, Zach, and Geoff all hadn’t arrived yet (suppose to leave at 9) and the bus waited a little longer, but not for Geoffey boy.

The flights home took so much longer! The flight from Doha to Amsterdam this time was an extra 1.5 hours, and the flight from Amsterdam to Atlanta was now 10 hours. That was terrible! I was so tired and stressed from not getting much sleep since the race, I just wanted to be home. I bought another carbonated water in Amsterdam like a fool. What is up with all the carbonated water in Europe!?

Eventually I arrived in Cleveland 32 hours later after leaving the Torch in Doha. The Opeka’s drove all the way out to cleveland to pick me up and drive me home. I love Dan, Jan, Rocks, and Ryan so much! It was so incredible to see familiar faces at the airport and to know everything was going to be okay. We got dinner at Outback Steakhouse and finished watching the Carolina Panther’s remain undfeated, and my meal got comped. Thanks Mrs. Opeka for letting them know I was a World Champion, I didn’t really think they’d care much. They seemed to be pretty stoked about it though!

I finally got home and on my garage door were a couple congrats signs and some non-carbonated water (haha!) from Carol and Tessa Polatas. Awesome that they went out of there way to do that for me. I feel so blessed!

I got home, took a shower, then crawled into my own bed. Life is good.

 

A few cool pictures finishing and after race:

boooombooooooooooomafterace

 

 

Representing the USA in December

Hello everyone! I hope you still remember me. I’m Tony Migliozzi, a guy who runs way to much on a one mile loop in North Canton, Ohio. Now that I’ve refreshed your memory on who I might be, since it’s been a while, I have some exciting news if you care to stick around till the end..

I recently completed the Bank of America Chicago marathon on 10/11/15. I spent a lot of time training for it, and hoping for a fast time. First let me give you a little information on the marathon itself. The Chicago marathon is a World Marathon Major. There were 45,000 entrants into the race this year, and its known as a fast and flat course. I believe this year only the London and Paris marathons had more participants. Chicago had more participants than the Berlin marathon this year, where the world record was set last year. So pretty much it’s a huge marathon with the best competition in the world!

I got the bib number 25, which meant I was pretty much seeded with the 25th fastest time. A lot of people who are really fast in other events were making their debut at this race also, so place wise my goal was to just do better than 25. Goal time was 2:15:00 if weather was conducive. The weather ended up being less than ideal. There were some high winds, bright sunshine, and a warmer start than usual. It wasn’t terrible though, just not ideal.

I ended up going through half way of the race in 1:07:52, I think I was actually in 25th place around this time. Then the race got difficult! I never lost focus, I was slowing down a bit, but I was mentally strong. I ended up passing 10 people after half way and finished in 15th overall in 2:17:44, another Olympic trials standard. Maybe now they’ll let me bring a friend since I’ve hit it twice? It wasn’t the time I wanted, but the placement was better than I could have ever expected, and I think that’s what it is all about at these huge marathons so I am happy! NOW the big news…..

During my training for the Chicago marathon I submitted an entry to the USATF to be selected for a race in a far away place. A few weeks later I got a response. I think it was in the middle of September that I received the response. I had just finished 10 miles at marathon pace in the dark on a track and was pretty exhausted. I remember refreshing my Gmail, making sure it was true.

I was selected to represent the USA at the 50k World Championships in Doha, Qatar on December 4th. My flight has been booked, it’s a full day of flying, 24+ hours with a layover in Amsterdam. I’m really excited to represent the United States and have this experience. It’s less than two months away, and now that Chicago is over I am really excited to share this with everyone.

I can’t wait to wear the U.S.A jersey and represent to the best of my abilities! Godspeed!

Go the Extra Mile, it’s Never Crowded

The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner has never wrung so true. I think a lot of long distance professionals struggle with the idea of if all the work and dedication they submit to their dreams, goals, and task at hand is worth the pain and continual fatigue. I am not an exception to this lethargy in training and competing at the highest level at times. After all, if you are not at the very top echelon of the sport, restitution is minimal. It is like only the top ten basketball players in the league making good money, and everyone else is vying to get into that small circle of monetary relaxation. It is very hard to not be in financial distress when pursuing such monumental projects. This goes for most sport though that isn’t part of the “Big 4”.

I am the sole proprietor of my eventual demise or continued advancement. I write my own workouts. I am my own strength coach. I am my personal nutritionist. I construct my own race schedule. I organize all the logistics of my races. I pay my own way. I do all this willingly, and full knowing the compensation I receive is scarce. It is the sacrifice I make to be able to compete at the highest level, in areas with the best competition. This past season was the first I did all this alone, but it was undoubtedly the best season of my career.

Going at this primarily alone I believe is only preparing me for future endeavors. Understanding my body in so many different aspects, and understanding the business side in regards to logistics of getting to and being at races garners me valuable experience in my future careers. I hope to one day be a coach in a collegiate environment and having already done many of the tasks at hand as an individual, I believe it will be transferable in team dynamics as well.

I can’t leave out those who have molded me and guided me along the process to this point. I have collected so much data from legendary coaches such as Matt Reneker, Jack Hazen, and Matt Woods. All the information they provided me along the way has been invaluable to my success as an elite marathoner. There is a very long road ahead though that needs to be traversed. I will do it, throwing caution to the wayside.

Now I am getting into a whole new realm of competition in athletics. I have recently updated my race schedule and will be competing at many events the next few months. It is a demanding schedule, but one I will hope to enjoy and challenge myself with. Sorry this post is getting quite long, but I hope you have made it to this point! Below is my current race schedule for 2015. My next marathon is in THREE days in Albany, GA, it is the Albany Marathon. I hope you continue to follow my progress as an athlete..

https://tonymigliozzi.wordpress.com/race-schedule/

If you haven't read the book or watched the film,  I recommend doing so.

If you haven’t read the book or watched the film, I recommend doing so.

What to do from here? Help me decide!

Got to work an hour early to send this out! Well in the past 3.5 months I have taken an unconventional path. I have raced three, yes three, competitive marathons. Not only that, but I sprinkled in a half marathon victory and even a 5k win in between. So you can say I have been beating my body up pretty good. I still feel young and chipper and ready to roll though! As I would tell Drew Trusty and Jordan Mckelley, I’m still an old bull trying to find my horns though.

Yes, I made a very very very late switch to the full marathon at Houston instead of the half. Sorry to not keep you updated on that, but like I said, it was a very very very late switch ha ha!

It surely panned out as I hit the Olympic Trials B standard of 2:18:00 with a 2:17:27 11th place finish down in Texas. I got to hang out with my brother who lives in Houston for a few days after too! It was a great success.

The question is where to go from here. Should I keep rolling the dice and racing. Or should I take some time to recover? Also, what race would you guys like to see me to do next? It is totally up in the air, and I honestly really would like suggestions because I’m all ears. So please give me your two cents on what I should do next!

Here is how the last few months have gone:

OCT 5- 2:18:32 Twin Cities

OCT 18- 2:20:53 Columbus marathon

NOV-  Second Sole Half Marathon and St Thomas 5k Victories

JAN 18- 2:17:27 Houston Marathon OTQ

Warmer Days Ahead

Sickness, holidays, and just plain fatigue from the grind have prevented me from keeping this as updated as i have envisioned. It’s been about two 9 day cycles since my last post, and you better believe I have that data for you! I have felt a little like Louis Zamperini battling my sickness these last six days. Yes, a bit dramatic, as I will never begin to fathom what he went through,  but I remain Unbroken and zero days were taken off!

I went a few days with no remedies, hoping for a natural cure. I got hopeless though tossing and turning through a few sleepless nights and purchased DayQuil, NyQuil, and Pedialyte. That concoction I mixed together seemed  to ease the pain a bit. I had the witches cauldron set up in my living room. I felt as if I were conducting some type of opposite necromancy (instead of raising the dead, i was putting the dead to sleep AKA myself). I had all these different medicines I was using and together they formed the power to knock me out at 8:30PM.

I finally have gotten my schedule under control and I plan on going to South Carolina on January 6th till the half marathon in Houston on January 18th. You don’t know how much anticipated this warmer weather is. I’m sure most of you reading can understand. Don’t be to envious though, I plan on beating myself up a good bit and being on a pretty strict schedule. It is about that time! I will also get some time to spend with my family and friends down South. Something I don’t have the opportunity of always doing here in Ohio. Oh, and hopefully I’ll be healthy!

Here are the last two 9 day cycles-

12/12-12/20

12/12-             AM: 13mi 7:11 pace                              PM: 5mi 7:19pace

12/13-             AM: 12mi 7:28 pace                              PM: 5mi 6:48pace

12/14-             AM: 10.5mi 5:55pace (4 @ 4:53pace)   PM: 7mi 7:35pace

12/15-             AM: 10mi 7:54pace                                PM: 5mi 7:31pace

12/16-             AM: 11mi 7:41pace                                PM: 6mi 7:34pace

12/17-             AM: 10.85mi 6:17pace (300on200off)    PM: 4mi 7:37pace

12/18-             AM: 12mi 7:11 pace                               PM: 4mi 7:08pace

12/19-                                                                            PM: 23mi 6:42 pace

12/20-             AM: 10mi 7:42                                        PM: 7mi 7:15pace

9 day cycle total- 155.35mi

12/21               AM: 13mi 5:46pace (7mi @ 5:02pace)

12/22               AM: 13mi 7:18pace                               PM: 5mi 7:34pace

12/23               AM: 18mi 7:11pace

12/24               AM: 11mi 7:22pace                               PM: 4mi 6:51pace

12/25               AM: 9mi 6:20 (3x1k/ 6×200)                  PM: 6.5mi 7:33pace

12/26               AM: 11mi 7:15pace

12/27               AM: 11mi 8:00pace                               PM: 4mi 6:18pace

12/28               AM: 13mi 5:56pace (7 @ 5:11pace)     PM: 4mi 7:24pace

12/29               AM: 10mi 7:43 pace

total 9 day cycle-  132.5mi

Locked and Loaded

We are now about a month away from the half marathon. I believe most of the base work has been laid out for me and it is time to sharpen up!

I did a little math in memory of my last 9 day cycle. As of 12/10/14 I have logged 36,689.53 miles (WHOA). That is 3.96 miles a day since the day i was born! Even crazier, it is 10.57 miles a day since the day I started running. Ya, you could say I run a lot.

Here are the last nine days:

12/3/14     AM: 12mi (6:50pace)          PM: 4mi (7:18pace)

12/4/14     AM: 13.2mi (6:51pace)       PM: 4mi (5:43 pace)

12/5/14     AM: 14mi (6:00pace)      <– 5x1mile 4:50pace down to 4:40pace

12/6/14     AM: 10mi (unknown)           PM: 4mi (6:43pace)

12/7/14     AM:0                                      PM: 17mi (7:04pace)

12/8/14     AM: 14mi (5:43pace)          PM: 4mi (6:42pace)

12/9/14     AM: 14mi (6:24pace)           PM: 6mi (7:41pace)

12/10/14   AM: 12mi (7:33pace)           PM:0

12/11/14   AM: 20mi (5:32pace)           PM: 5.12mi (7:11pace)

9 day cycle total: 153.32mi

The Tragicomic Road to Houston

The past seven days have been successful, tragic, and at the end of the day just plain funny.

It was certainly successful. The Malone Pioneer men and women qualified to the National meet in Louisville, Kentucky. It has been only the second year they’ve been competing at the D2 level, and to have both teams qualify is a daunting task for anyone. They did it with poise and maturity, and they are a team you don’t mind hopping on the bandwagon with. They put in some serious work, and deserved every accolade they received. The course was a complete wreck. It was true cross country at its finest, but it was also borderline tough mudder. The men were first, and they definitely did a number on the already ruined terrain. I’m sure the ladies enjoyed that next! The whole men’s team ran to complete exhaustion, they didn’t leave anything behind. Drew Trusty finished 10th overall somehow, some way. It looked like he was a clear 11th place going to the finish. Whatever he mustered up to catch the 10th place male was some kind of outer body experience he had going on, it was insane! Roush was next in I believe 16th place, another All-American. Amazing! Jordan Mckelley rounded out the top three for Malone. This dude, a high school teammate, a college teammate, a great friend, and most importanly my brother worked so hard this year. It seems like he hasn’t been healthy in forever, and to have the season he had is remarkable. He is the definition of persistence and dedication. He didn’t get the results he wanted for his final cross country race, but he can’t say he didn’t give it all he had, all year. The men ended up finishing top ten as a team in 9th place under the guidance of the great Jack Hazen. What he has done for what, the past 48 years (!!!??!!??!!!) for the Malone program has been incredible. I am biased, but he’s the best coach in the nation hands down! Sorry I am starting to write a lot.

Next up though were the women on the thrashed course. I was pretty tired from sprinting around during the men’s race with Jarod Williams, who I am pretty sure hadn’t ran a step since his last race with Malone till this day. I gained energy though with a whole new big group of people running around the course. There was Jarod Williams, Ally Peare, Mikey Pete, Nate Addessi,  Emily Fisher, Nick Fresenko, Tina Oprean, Marcus Samblanet, Aaron Huckels, and so many more people cheering on the athletes. It was so exciting, and the adrenaline was pumping. We ran to so many different spots trying to catch the women every chance we could. I obviously was a bit more nervous now having Sara in this race. I really wanted her to go out strong in her cross country career, and she did! I can’t express how extremely proud I have been of her dedication to the program and to herself these last few years. She makes me so proud to be her boyfriend! Mattie Rankin, Maddie Schuler, and all the other girls ran their hearts out as well. With the terrain being the way it was, there were obviously obstacles to overcome, and they all finished with nothing left. They finished in 11th overall at the national championship. It was a proud day to be a Malone Pioneer!

The last seven days were also oh so tragic! My running suffered haha. Yes, in the grand scheme of things, it was hardly a setback. I still ran a ton of mileage, and was hitting some key workouts, but it was a bit chaotic and unorganized. My eating, my DRINKING, and my overall recovery was much worse then it usually is. And that is saying a lot!

It was all worth seeing my friends, teammates, and family succeed. Seeing others reach their potential can be more satisfying then your own personal successes sometimes. You spend so much time being selfish and working on your self, it is really important to take a step back and by joyful for and with others. So at the end of the day I can only sit back and laugh at how caught up you can get in your routine. I wouldn’t take back my experience in Louisville for anything.

louisville

PS: I will be posting my last 9 day cycle tomorrow when it ends! Check back for that please!

Weather is getting cold; Training is heating up.

Well this is my first blog post. I’d like to stick to the basics here initially to get my feet wet. I definitely have big plans to unveil here soon though!

Gearing up for Twin Cities last Summer/Fall I started a 9 day cycle training plan. I am still on that regime and I’m going to post each 9 day cycle, possibly each 7 days instead. We’ll start with the last 9 day cycle though. You can view more in depth details of the training underneath at the Running2Win link or my detailed training log page.

11/24/14-12/2/14

11/24- AM- 21mi (5:45pace)    PM- 4mi (7:43pace)

11/25- AM 15mi (7:35pace)

11/26- AM- 14mi (7:26pace)

11/27- AM- 12mi (7:30pace)     PM- 7mi (6:34pace) 3x1k session

11/28- AM- 11mi (7:26pace)     PM- 4mi (6:13 pace)

11/29- AM- 12mi (7:04 pace)

11/30- AM- 9mi (5:12paceM) 6mi WU/CD 2mi w/ 8×200 -total 17mi (5:53pace)

12/1-   AM- 14mi (6:14pace)      PM- 6.5mi (7:18pace)

12/2    AM- 22mi (6:52pace)      PM- 5mi (7:30pace)

9 day cycle total- 164.5mi

11th place US marathon Championships

11th place US marathon Championships 2:18:32 Minneapolis, MN

http://www.running2win.com/community/public-log.asp?m=T+Migliozzi&k=facebook