translated by Brett Larner
Aiming to qualify for the Japanese women's marathon team for next year's London Olympics, Athens Olympics marathon gold medalist and national record holder Mizuki Noguchi (Team Sysmex) talked about her marathon training on Dec. 8 at her base in Boulder, Colorado. She appeared happy and optimistic as she said, "I'm running well. I feel nearly as good and strong as I did before the Beijing Olympics."
Aiming for January's Osaka International Women's Marathon, the second of Japan's domestic Olympic selection races, Noguchi began altitude training in November. Her training has gone smoothly and she has gotten through all the key workouts on the menu, including days on which she has run nearly 60 km. Before the Beijing Olympics, where she had hoped to defend her Olympic title, she suffered an injury to her upper left leg and was forced to withdraw. The years since then have been filled with disappointment and serial injuries, and Noguchi's sincerity and depth of feeling was clear when she said, "I'm so, so happy to be doing this kind of tough training again."
Looking toward the Osaka International Women's Marathon, which will be her first marathon in more than four years, Noguchi hinted at an aggressive race plan when she said, "Of course I'm nervous about it, but I don't want to run defensively. I want to be assertive and take this on in a 'London at all costs' state of mind."