My Track Journey

Even though this blog is not supposed to be solely about my achievements on the Track so far – as results don’t define anyone – the worth of an individual is not dependent on achievements, marks, or anything else. However, I still want to share what I have achieved because it is still a part of my identity, but not everything!.
I competed in my first Track competition when I was 5 years old and immediately fell in love with the thrill of competing. More about my thrill for competing in “My Why.”
From age 9 to 15, I won many state championship titles in multiple and combined events. At that time, my favorite events were the long jump and 800 m ( Yeah, I’m a little weird).
When I was 13 years old, I qualified for the German championships in the heptathlon and was so excited to start there, winning my first bronze medal on the national stage. I still remember how happy and proud I was to win that medal, as I didn’t expect it. From the fall of 2013 to 2014 (I was 13 and 14 years old), I grew a lot and gained muscle mass and speed. So at 14, I made a big jump in my performance but was injured before nationals.
In 2015, my biggest dream came true, and I qualified for the heptathlon for the U18 world championships in Cali, Colombia. Competing on the international stage for the first time was exciting but overwhelming. The heptathlon can be awesome, but you need 7 great performances together for one good result. The long jump didn’t work out well, and after 2 faults, I just ran through and basically had no results there. This experience was probably the hardest one I had to process, but now, almost 10 years later, I have grown from it! After that, I won the bronze medal at the German national championships again, and this time, I was devastated. They were just two years apart, the same color as the medal, but with different emotions about it!!! As I came in with completely different expectations of myself.
In 2016, I was injured and had surgery on my arm. Due to the surgery, I couldn’t throw for quite a while. So I decided to run the 400m for the first time in 2017. That was a great decision, as I got nominated to be part of the 4x400m relay at the U20 European championships. I ran in the prelims but got replaced by someone faster in the final. In the final, they/we won the silver medal! In 2017, I also won a bronze medal in the 400m at the U20 nationals and became the U20 German national champion in the heptathlon.
Besides that last success in the heptathlon, my arm didn’t hold the throwing force, and I decided to focus on the 400m. However, in 2018, I got diagnosed with my first stress reaction in my left navicular and walked on crutches for the summer instead of running around the Track.
Moving to Cologne for my undergrad, I ran my first 400m hurdle race in 2019! I won the (next) bronze medal at U23 nationals, this time in the 400 hurdles. But soon after that, I got diagnosed with multiple stress reactions in my foot again. An odyssey began, which ended with surgery in 2020.
In 2021, I continued doing the 400 hurdles, greatly improved my time, and won silver (finally, not bronze!) at the U23 nationals. However, I missed the U23 European championship qualifier by 0.04 seconds. I was devastated but knew I COULD do more, so I continued.
In 2022, I can’t say I won any medals, but I gained a lot of experience, and my current 400m hurdle PR is 57.31 seconds.
To end, I moved to the US to the University of South Carolina and started my Master’s there. In 2023, I experienced even more, achieved some PBs in the 800m indoor (2:07), and that adventure started promising. However, the outdoor season was one of the most challenging ones, and it did not end with a PB, which was hard to process but ended with a stress fracture in my left navicular. Right now, I sit at my desk, writing these facts about me, with two screws in my foot and working on my recovery. Let’s see what comes next. Hopefully more medals and no broken bones any more!
To end this, I might have yet to achieve something remarkable, but I still had some successes. Writing all this, I realized I have one big regret, and I wrote about that in my blog post about life lessons.

 

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