Mitchell Watt wins the long jump in Sydney
It’s not even the end of the Australian season yet, but already Mitchell Watt is planning his trip to Europe, appearances in the Samsung Diamond League, and a meeting with Olympic Long Jump champion Greg Rutherford.
"Things come around quick. I’ve already started planning for Europe and competing overseas. I’m starting with the Samsung Diamond League in Shanghai.
"When you start looking at accommodation and flights and that kind of thing, you realise that the pre-season has almost gone and the main season is coming around pretty quickly.
"Athletics Australia has also just announced that Greg Rutherford is coming out for the domestic meetings in Perth and at the IAAF World Challenge in Melbourne. Greg is training with coach Dan Pfaff in Arizona and he, Steve Hooker and Steve Lewis are all coming out for the same meetings.
"It’s not every day Australian fans gets to see reigning Olympic gold and silver medallists going head-to-head, especially in the domestic season straight after the major championship. I’m sure the meeting organisers will pump it up. It should be great for the Australian Athletics Tour.
"Greg and I get along pretty well. I haven’t spoken to him for a while – he’s been busy and so have I. We’re mates, we get along well and we help each other out during the competitions. Our coaches get on well, too.
"It’s probably only a matter of time before I go to Arizona and do a block with their group. I was thinking about it this year, but a couple of the group were doing indoors, Hooker was coming back here, so it didn’t quite work out in the end.
"It will probably happen though, maybe even later this year. I’ve been training at the same track, doing the same stuff for about five years now, so after this season, after Moscow, I might go there to mix things up a bit.
"Our training is fairly similar, so it will be good for him to come here during our season and maybe I can go over there later in the year.
"Since I last wrote, I had to miss the chance to race in the 100m at the Adelaide meeting. During my last session before I was going, I messed up my run-up on one of my jumps, leaned back and jammed my ankle.
"It was no big deal, but being the last session before Adelaide meant I couldn’t go. I had one day off, rearranged another session and did weights instead of running. So it was a very minor hiccup; it cost me just 1-2 days.
"But I definitely want to re-schedule that 100m. Greg has shown some interest, too, so maybe we could long jump and then do 100m if one of the meetings is keen to organise that.
"Sydney, where I’ll jump off my full run for the first time this year, is less than two weeks away (March 9). I’ve jumped well in Sydney in the past,it’s a pretty good place to jump. When you compete in front of the stand with the roof overhanging there’s a fair bit of noise.
"I’m not sure who else is jumping there. Maybe Henry (Frayne), perhaps even Fabrice (Lapierre). Hopefully Fabrice is back on track this year.
"I’m not too concerned what distance I jump at this stage. One thing I keep learning year to year is it’s the one at the end of the year that matters most. With my London result, I only need a B-standard to confirm my spot on the team for Moscow.
"The plan is to come out and jump 8.15m during the domestic season. I don’t want to come out all guns blazing, but instead plan to manage my body and my training so that I make sure I get to the end of the domestic season still feeling good and ready to go to Europe. It’s not going to achieve anything jumping a personal best by the end of March; the aim is to come out of the domestic season on the way up for Europe.
"I’m enjoying myself a lot more now that I don’t have these niggles. I don’t go to training worried about whether my Achilles tendon is going to be sore. So I’m enjoying myself a lot more, enjoying my training a lot more, that’s as important as anything.
"I’ve got exams coming up in my course next week and I’m also going to keep my law studies going in the first semester this year.
"It’s not the most fun thing in the world, but I’ve been balancing it well with my training and it is nice to know I’m getting near the end of my degree.
"Shanghai is my only major competition in that time during first semester so it fits in well. It’s on a weekend, so I can go up and back for that without missing any study, and then have another month here before going to Europe.
"As I said, it’s all coming around very quickly.
"Until next time,