STC Elite team member Austin Bahner is nearing the end of his first post-collegiate season and just got named to Team USA for the Pan Am Games in Toronto, Canada, July 20-26.
We got Austin’s opinion on several topics with this Q&A. Enjoy!
How has your first year of post collegiate track gone?
Overall, I am very pleased with how my first has gone. As always, there are ups and there are downs, especially dealing with the Multi-events. My biggest issue in the past has probably been injuries, and I have stayed relatively healthy and in shape the entire season. Other than that, I have been quite consistent in most area’s of the multi, while I have gained a couple of personal bests. I finished second at USA Indoor Nationals and qualified for two USA Teams in the outdoor season which is a huge confidence boost going into next year.
The biggest challenge I have faced would have to be the motivation. At this time of the season, I have been on my own the majority of the time so it is important that I stay motivated to keep up my training and continue to work toward my goals.
What are your goals for the upcoming Pan Am Games?
I know that there will be a lot of great competitors at this meet so I am going to do my best to stay in reach of the top and take it one event at a time. I am shooting for a great score that will potentially qualify me into the 2016 Olympic Trials.
What are your goals as you look forward to 2016?
The biggest thing for me is staying healthy throughout the season, most importantly the outdoor season. USA Indoor Nationals will be held in Portland, Oregon next year, which athletes will be competing for a spot on the Indoor World Championships team. For the Outdoor season, the Olympic Trials will be held in Eugene, Oregon where athletes will compete for a spot in the Olympics. My ultimate goal is to hit the standard for next year to go to the trials and compete for one of those spots.
What do you do for support to be able to continue to train for your goals?
My biggest support comes from my parents. They have been there for me more than I could have imagined. Outside of them, I have many great support groups. Shocker Track Club has provided help through expenses for gear and some travel. Asics America provided a great donation of gear. I work as a Volunteer Assistant at Wichita State in order to continue my training with the group of multis. I have also reached out to friends and family for small donations for some of my bigger trips that I normally would not be able to afford like this past year’s Indoor Nationals that was held in Boston, MA. I am very appreciative of everyone and everything I have received over this past season.
What advice can you give someone who wants to continue track after college?
My first piece of advice would have to be patience. Not everything is going to go the way you want whether it be injuries, your training, your marks/scores, etc. Its all about overcoming those obstacles and trusting yourself and your training. Also, have some sort of structure or organization to your training. I still follow the team’s workouts with some modifications due to a longer and later season.
Thank you to Austin for the interview. Good luck in Toronto! Go USA!!!