Runner Profile:  Ben McKeown

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Next up in our ‘Runner Profile’ is Ben Mc Keown, a young man who has enormous potential!  Presently enjoying his off season but looking forward to getting the spikes back on.  Ben is 17 years old and has been running since November 2009,  after being encouraged to try athletics by his Year 10 Education teacher.  Good choice!

Full Name: Ben McKeown

Current Category: Under 17

Associated Club: Ballymena & Antrim Athletic Club

Personal Bests: 100m – 11.66secs, 200m – 23.40secs, 400m – 54.98secs, 800m – 2:13.66, 5k – 18:58

Favourite Northern Ireland event? My favourite Northern Ireland event is the Northern Ireland and Ulster Juvenile Championships as it has a friendly atmosphere and gives athletes the chance to meet each other and get to know others who compete. Also it offers a unique opportunity to qualify for the Woodie’s DIY AAI Juvenile Championships which, if you qualify, is a great achievement in itself.

Why do you run?  I run mostly because I really enjoy it and it basically makes me feel great. After a run or a tough training session when you know you’ve left it all on the track you get a great feeling of reward and satisfaction. Also it keeps you fit and healthy.

What is your next race and what do you want from it?  My next race is the Indoors, Woodie’s DIY Irish Championships in February 2013. I plan on running the 200m and the 60m so I will incorporate my winter training in a way that I will be race fit and ready to go come race day. I plan to gain confidence from this race for the season ahead and a debut 60m personal best time.

What is your favourite training ‘session’?  My favourite training session would have to be a pyramid session were we will, for example run 30m then 60m then 90m the 120m and come back down. It’s my favourite because after the first 120m run, the more tired you get the shorter the distance!

What is your favourite pre-race and post-race meals? As a pre-race meal I would ideally start the night before and do some carbohydrate loading by eating breads or pasta. Then that morning I would have Weetabix and a Berocca vitamin drink, with wholemeal toast. With an hour to the race I would have a banana or a jam sandwich. After a race, I would usually have a roast dinner with meat, potatoes and vegetables.

What is your running ambition?  My overall running ambition is to represent my country at International level and of course I would love to compete at the Olympics one day or perhaps a World Championship.

What other sports do you like?  I enjoy going to the gym and the pool with my friends, in-between my training sessions. Also I like to watch mountain biking, boxing and skateboarding on TV.