In July, Brooks signed three-time National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I (DI) steeplechase champion Allie Ostrander to the Brooks Beasts Track Club. Originally from Kenai, Alaska, and a graduate of Boise State University, Allie is an 11-time All American and holds places in the NCAA top-15 all-time lists in the 5,000-meter run, 10,000m and steeplechase.
At the recent U.S. Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Des Moines, Allie finished fourth in the women’s steeplechase final. Her performance qualified her to represent the U.S. later this year at the World Track & Field Championships in Doha, Qatar. We wanted to ask her a few questions to learn more about her perspective after this great achievement!
What are you feeling now that you’ve made your first world team?
AO: More than anything, I am shocked. I knew going into the USA Championships that a spot on the world team was a real possibility, especially since Emma Coburn, the returning World Champion, had a bye, which allows the U.S. to take four representatives in the steeplechase. Even with this knowledge going in, it is hard for me to comprehend, even now, that I will have the opportunity to represent team USA at the World Championships. I am excited and honored to have this opportunity. Also, being the fourth representative, I am motivated to prepare for the World Champs and prove that I deserve to be included in that field.
What were the thoughts going through your head when you crossed the finish line and realized you’d made it?
AO: As soon as I crossed the line, Emma Coburn handed me a little USA flag, and that made the significance of my finish a little more real. I was ecstatic, waving that flag around like a little kid, just wanting to soak in the moment. I wasn’t even really having cohesive thoughts just like, “Yay, flag. Wave it around. Hi mom and dad!”
Are you changing anything or doing anything new in terms of your training for worlds or your race strategy?
AO: Leading into the USA Champs, I was still transitioning into the pro athlete life, so my college coach was giving me workouts. Now, leading into the World Champs, I will be coached by Danny Mackey, so my training will be slightly different.
For people who might be super familiar with the steeplechase, can you describe and tell us why you love that event so much?
AO: The steeplechase is seven-and-a-half laps with four barriers and one water hazard per lap. A barrier is basically a sturdy and wide hurdle, while a water hazard is a barrier followed immediately by a water pit. I love this event because it has some added excitement when compared to a normal, flat track race. The barriers break up the laps into segments and make it go by faster. Also, the barriers and the water jump make this a mentally challenging race, which appeals to me because, in my opinion, distance running is about who can be the toughest, and the steeplechase definitely tests toughness.
You’re one of our newest Beasts- what’s your favorite part so far about being on the team?
AO: The camaraderie of the group is fantastic. Although I had hardly met the members of the team when I qualified for Team USA, everyone was so encouraging and supportive. I can already tell that this team has a strong culture that will lift me up and help me succeed.
What’s one thing about you that runners might be surprised to know?
AO: There are a lot of little random facts about me, but one that might surprise runners is that I do not like running in the morning. I know that most runners prefer to run right when they wake up, but I prefer to sleep in, make a nice breakfast and relax for a few hours before running. I like to call myself a “mid-afternoon person”, because that really is the time of day that I thrive.