elite profile Amelie Kretz
“Isthis really happening? This is amazing!” These were the thoughts running through Amelie Kretz’s mind as she raced towards a first-place finish at the Edmonton World Cup sprint in June of this year. The moment she broke the finish-line tape and became a World Cup champion, she felt proud that her efforts had paid off.
Kretz now knows that hard work is synonymous with success. She knows podium finishes will come with the gruelling 25-hour training weeks, that winning will come with the emotional fortitude of racing head to head with the best in the world.
I sat down with Kretz on a recovery day during her training camp in Spain to ask her about life, the training grind, her breakthrough year and her future.
Triathlon Magazine Canada: You’ve had a outstanding year: second at the Mazatlan Pan American Cup Olympic, first at the Edmonton World Cup Sprint and first at the Bridgetown Pan American Cup Sprint. Mazatlan was your very first Olympic distance race. What was your biggest lesson? Amelie Kretz: A good plan and its execution equals a good race. I realized that nutrition and pacing are going to be way more important in Olympic than sprint distance. TMC: In all three of these races you had the fastest run. Your 5 km run has improved from 19: 03 in 2010 to 16: 36 this year. What contributed to this improvement?
AK: In 2011, I travelled with my coach, Kyla Rollinson, to races in Europe. I was doing well on the local and national sprint scene, but it was on this trip that I realized I would need to work harder to match the talent at the international level. I increased my run mileage and changed my run program. My run improved but unfortunately I got a stress fracture. This incident was a good lesson about improving my run, preventing injury and realizing how water running is key to recovery.
TMC: Do you prefer training in a group or on your own? AK: I used to like to training on my own when I lived in Montreal. It was what I was used to and I didn’t have a lot of training partners. Now, being with Craig Taylor and the training squad in Guelph, Ont., I am getting used to training with a group and I prefer it.