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Q&A with Leonel Manzano

Interview with our favorite Leonel Manzano, 2009 US 1500m runner-up  & Berlin World Championship Finalist over 1500m.  

Leonel Manzano taking the second place over 1500m in Brussells (Belgium), August 27, 2010.

Last Name : MANZANO
First Name : Leonel
Age : 26 
Country : USA

Palmarès :
– US runner-up in 2009 over 1500m
– 2009 World Championship finalist. 

Progression 800m :

1:53.72 (2002)
1:51.54 (2003)
1:50.48 (2004)
1:49.26 (2006)
1:46.20 (2009)
1:44.56 (2010)

Progression 1500m :

3:37.13 (2005)
3:39.49 (2006)
3:35.29 (2007)
3:36.67 (2008)
3:33.33 (2009)
3:32.27 (2010)

Records :
– 800m : 1:44.56
– 1500m : 3:32.37

L’interview Runafrica :

1/ Where were you born ?
In Dolores Hidalgo in Mexico.

2/ How and when did you start running ? Who is your coach ?
I always ran but I started focusing at 13. Ryan Ponsonby (3:42 for 1500m in 2003) & John Cook (1:47 at 800m in 1988)

3/ What distances are your running ? What are your Personnal Best ?
I run the 800m (1:44.56) and the 1500m (3:32.37)

4/ What race is your best memory ? Can You tell us more about that race ?
The 2005 NCAA Champoionship in Sacramento (California). I was the outsider. Due to little injuries the weekend of the compétition, I was not sure that I could defend my title at 100%. After my heat (where i ended up 5th) I felt cramps to both of my calves and the day before the final my knee was swelling after a run by the Tahoe Lake.  It was not easy to manage. But in the end I won the race in 3’37 with a new PB and a championship record. Happiness! 


5/ When was your last race ? 
My last race was in Europe (Croatia) and I just ran the Boston and New York indoor races. 

6/ The next one ?
Not before april, maybe at the Penn Relays.

7/ What is your actual shape in comparison at last year?
I feel more sharp, strong and fast, Each year is better than the previous one.

8/ What are your goals for this year ? (Time, championship, race)
1:43 for the 800m. 3:30 for the 1500m & 3:49 in the mile.

9/ What are your dreams for tomorrow ?
To run fast!

10/ Who was your role model as a kid ?
Bruce Lee.

11/ If you were not an athlete, what else would you be ?
A slug, someone very slow (laugh).

12/ Where are you mostly training ? 
In Austin (Texas)

13/ How many miles/kilometres are you doing each week ?
I ran between 110 and 130km each week. 

14/ Can you tell us the best workout you have done until today ?
There has been many. Each year workouts are like challenges and I love to take up challenges. My favorite one is 10*400m under 1 minute. 

15/ What do you eat before a race ?
A good steak and some veggies. 

16/ What are you planning after running ?
Many things but for now i stay focus on running. 

17/ Have you ever been to France ? 
I ran in Monaco last year, it was gréât. But I would love to come and run in Paris, maybe this year! 

A last word : Thank you for giving me the opportunity to answer at your questions and good luck for the future. 

Kip Evans – 15/02/2011

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