Interview: Adrienne Herzog

Adrienne Herzog is a Dutch middle and long distance athlete running 1500m, 3000m and 5000m on track and occasionally running 10km road races. She also boasts an impressive record in Cross Country – in 2012 she finished 3rd at the European Cross Country Championships in a hard fought race in tough, icy conditions and she followed this up in early 2013 by finishing 2nd at the Great Edinburgh Cross Country meet, in the process she helped Europe take home Team Gold.

Herzog spends her time between Spain and Boulder, Colorado and will be looking to make an impact at the World Athletics Championships in Moscow this year.

When did you start running and did you have any particular reasons for starting?

I started running when I was 12 or 13 or so. I started mostly because I just loved to run. My father used to be a pro cross country skier and he stayed fit in the summers with lots of running training, which is how I first got in contact with running.

If you could run with and/or race anyone, anywhere who would it be and where? Over what distance and on which surface?

I’ve  never thought about this. I never really want to race certain people, I have learned more and more to race myself and don’t care much about who is there.

There definitely are people I‘d love to beat one day, maybe people who inspired me when I was little – it would be kind of cool to beat your childhood hero!

Running wise, who do you look up to and who has inspired you?

When I was little I loved Paula Radcliffe. Later on I changed that a little, I love Kelly Holmes she’s been through many deep valleys and then achieved a huge peak to end her career! I guess my career is a little more like that at the moment. I also like Kara Goucher as I believe she is a very good example for female distance running but there are also many more who inspire me.

What are your favourite training conditions and are they the same as your favourite racing conditions?

I’m not sure. With cross country I love it when the course is wet and muddy but honestly I don’t care much. I tell myself always “When you are good you are good” – it doesn’t matter what conditions, surface or people there are, you’ve just got to show your best form in all circumstances!

What is your fondest memory of running and, conversely, your worst?

I loved my first international medal at the European Cross Country in Dublin and my medal in Budapest last December was very emotional as I have had a rough personal time the last half year – I was glad I could end all that with my medal. This medal came from so deep it was definitely the most emotional moment so far! I’m not so sure about my worst race, I was very disappointed to get sick last summer and miss the Olympic Games though.

Where do you see yourself in six years?

I have learned not to look ahead too much and to live in the moment as much as possible. In 6 years I’m 33 years old. I know I want to continue until 2016 and Rio but after that I have to see I have the right level motivation. I want to make sure I’m still full of passion for what I do, as I am right now. I can see myself starting a marathon career in the next few years and maybe I’ll have much more to come after 2016 in marathon running. I can also see that I want to become a mother after Rio and I have many other things in life I still want to do! I’m definitely not a runner who only runs – I love life in so many more ways too!

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