by Dave Delgado
Guam - Amy Atkinson will be pushing her body to the limit when she competes in the women's 800-meter race in London. Atkinson has always been an athlete representing the island in soccer and now stepping onto the world's biggest stage in athletics. Amy has brought home medals for Guam in the past while competing at the Micronesia Games, Pacific Games as well as the Oceania Championships.
Atkinson told KUAM Sports, "Starting last year after the Pacific Games I really wanted to up my training and I was out in California finishing up my last year of school and I joined a track club. I got a coach out there and really focused on building a strong base this last year and gaining strength. So I've been working on that and training with that club for this year and came back to Guam and join the Guam Team and train with some of the high school guys that also went with us to Cairns Australia for the Oceania Championships. So I've been just trying to tune up more speed for the 800-meter these last couple of weeks. It was also really good to have a race in Cairns Australia to just see where were at as we prepare, like Derek said lead up our intensity to the Olympic Games."
Like most of the athletes representing Guam at the games, Amy is looking at hitting a personal best time in the 800. She recently ran a 2:21:30 at the Oceania Championships this year and has her eyes on the Guam record of 2:19.2.
She added, "While we were in Oceania we competed against all of the South Pacific countries as well as Australia and New Zealand so I was able to race mostly against Australian and New Zealand competition in the 1,500 and 800 meters. It's just a good time to push yourself and also to learn from your competition and I was able to take a bronze medal in the 1,500 meters as well as get a personal best in the 800-meters. So it was a great place to push myself and also with the 800 it's one of the races that is so short and so intense that you really have to race it a lot before you can become really good at it. So your just learning race strategy so I felt like I'm learning where I can push myself harder and where I need to focus my training in these next 5 weeks."