Lindsay Allen will arrive on Maui for the first time today with a busy weekend ahead of her.
Allen will take part in the 13th annual Run Forrest Run Front Street Mile on Saturday and the Maui Half-Marathon on Sunday.
"Ever since I have been running I have done shorter and longer races in the offseason, so I will do all road races, from a mile to 10K," said the Stanford University record holder in the 3,000-meter
steeplechase. "I want to do a lot more speed work, which is fun for me, and tap into the other side."
While Allen wants to hang with the leaders in the mile and kick with a quarter-mile to go, the half-marathon "is so much longer than any race I have done, so I think for me it would be more about going conservatively, if anything, especially since it is the day after the first race.
"Once I get down to 5K to go, something I'm more comfortable with, I can judge how much I can give to the finish."
The mile races are scheduled begin at 3 p.m. in Lahaina. The 43rd annual JTB Maui Ma-rathon starts at 5:30 a.m. Sunday at the Queen Ka'ahumanu Center in Kahului, and finishes in front of Whalers Village in Kaanapali. The half-marathon also begins at 5:30 a.m., and will start and finish at Whalers Village.
"The mile is my focus because you can't really train for both distances simultaneously, so the half is just exciting," said Allen, a Nike runner. "I have nothing to lose. It is just fun to test my legs at that distance."
Allen was a fourth-place NCAA finisher in the steeplechase, and qualified for the Olympic trials in 2008 and 2012 - she missed the latter with a leg injury that sidelined her for three months.
"It takes a while coming off of injury to get that excitement again," she said. "I have never been to Maui or Hawaii or anything, so that is just adding to the excitement."
This weekend has been her focal point since a break after the summer schedule.
"I know I will be doing more road races after this, but this is definitely what we have been keying towards," Allen said. "After this we will kind of assess, but this has been the forefront of our training for the summer."
The professional women will headline the Front Street Mile because the prestigious Fifth Avenue Mile is taking place for men this weekend in New York City.
"I think the more girls that are in it and the more competitive, the better everybody is going to run. Talking to the race directors, they said it is going to be a pretty good field," Allen said.
* Robert Collias is at email@example.com