Katie Mackey Wins First National Title After Nearly Quitting the Sport
“I want to pass on what I’ve learned—I think at the end of the day that’s what will be a successful career to me.”
By Erin Strout, Runner's World
Katie Mackey found another gear she wasn’t sure she had. She discovered it with about 200 meters left on Tuesday night at the USA Road Mile Championship in Des Moines, Iowa.
“That’s where I made the move. And then I got the lead and I couldn’t see anybody in my peripheral vision anymore,” Mackey said, during a phone interview with Runner’s World on Thursday. “I got a huge surge of adrenaline. I thought, ‘This is happening. I’m doing this. Nobody is passing me.’”
When she crossed the line in 4:37.00 with the win, it wasn’t just any first-place finish for the 29-year-old member of the Brooks Beasts middle distance team, based in Seattle and coached by her husband, Danny Mackey. It was her first national title and some validation that she had made the right decision to continue on with her running career. Mackey had given serious thought to retirement after the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials ended in disappointment—she finished sixth in the 5000 meters, which was a result she described as “crushing.”
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