Callahan shoots for Olympic Trials in marathon, steeplechase

October 25, 2015

Maggie CMaggie Callahan of Fairbanks will be knocking on the door of opportunity on Halloween.

Never mind candy, though, she wants a sweet time in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon.

“My goal is run to 1:15, which would qualify me for the marathon in the Olympic Trials in February,” Callahan told me.

The 27-year-old former University of Arizona running star is looking to qualify for the Trials in two events – the marathon and the steeplechase.

Callahan, of West Valley fame, was one of Arizona’s strongest and most durable long-distance runners during her career. She earned All-Pac 10 honors in both cross country and track.

She qualified for the NCAAs in the steeplechase, the event for she’s probably best known.

“This is my first time training for a half-marathon, and the increase in volume has been very good for my overall strength,” she said. “Longer workouts have always been my most challenging.”

She is currently living in Colorado and running 80 to 90 miles a week with longer workouts – 4x 2 miles, 10x 1,000 meters and long runs up to 20 miles.

She also trains with a coach that specializes in Olympic lifting.

“The lifting should help with explosiveness on the track this spring,” Callahan said.

The spring is when she will try qualifying for the Olympic Trials in the steeplechase.

“I have never competed at the Trials before. The last Olympic cycle I missed it in the steeplechase by about 5 spots,” she said. “The Olympic Trials will be the most competitive races in the U.S., a culmination of every athlete’s four years of hard work, and it would be very special to be a part of that.”