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Alex Millard on how London 2012 carved her athletics aspirations

Alex Millard on how London 2012 carved her athletics aspirations

The 22-year-old opens up about training in South Africa, becoming a New Balance athlete and upcoming 2024 goals

Like so many athletes who are now competing in the sport, Alex Millard was inspired by London 2012.

Millard, who went from beating the boys in races in school to joining her local club Invicta East Kent, states that Jess Ennis-Hill was her biggest idol. No surprise that Millard initially tried out the multi-events. However, she quickly discovered that running was her strongest point and the rest is history.

Fast forward to 2024 and Millard, who is in her last year at Loughborough University studying sports science, has started her season off with a bang.

A New Balance athlete, Millard made the pilgrimage to the NB Indoor Grand Prix in Boston last month (Feb 6) and dropped her 5000m personal best from 15:43.41 to 15:27.02. She is already one of five British women who have gone sub-15:30 during the indoor season [the other four being Hannah Nuttall, Izzy Fry, Jenny Nesbitt and Aimee Pratt].

Millard also clocked 9:06.33 to win the BUCS indoor 3000m crown in Sheffield and impressively took two seconds off Lisa Dobriskey’s 19-year-old championships record.

It’s the same success story over cross country. Millard, who won Euro Cross under-23 individual bronze two years ago, claimed victory in the long race at the BUCS Cross Country Championships this winter.

Success on the grass and track has set up the season perfectly for Millard, who wants to ‘just enjoy’ this summer and embrace the opportunities.

She’ll be able to test herself out over 5km at this weekend’s Podium Festival (March 16). It will be a good opportunity for the 22-year-old to see how much progress she has made over the winter months, ahead of the outdoor track season.

AW chats exclusively to Millard below:

Alex Millard at the NB Grand Prix (Dan Vernon)

How do you reflect on your personal bests in Boston and, more generally, the start to the 2024 season? 

Yeah, it was really nice. It was a great experience and although I was obviously hoping to run a personal best, I didn’t put much pressure on myself to get a certain time or anything.

So I was really happy to come out with that. To get sub-15:30 and win the race was nice as well. It was just a great confidence booster, especially off the back of a good training camp in South Africa, going into the 2024 outdoor season.

Boston was just great opportunity to run a fast 5000m. The indoor 3000m personal best…

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