Schudrowitz ’18 shatters 30-year-old school mile record

Junior sets new personal best, finishes fourth out of 140 runners in race at Boston invitational

Senior Staff Writer
Friday, February 3, 2017

The women’s track and field team competed at the John Thomas Terrier Invitational at Boston University Friday, continuing its strong start to the season. Natalie Schudrowitz ’18 posted a standout performance in the mile, finishing fourth out of 140 runners and setting a new personal record with a time of 4 minutes, 42.54 seconds. Schudrowitz also broke the school record for the event by three seconds, previously set in 1987 by Wendy Smith ’87.

Since arriving at Brown in 2014, Schudrowitz has had an illustrious cross country and track career. In 2015, she earned NCAA All-American, NCAA Northeast All-Region and Second Team All-Ivy honors for cross country, running 20 minutes,16.7 seconds in the six-kilometer course at the NCAA Championships, finishing 23rd. Schudrowitz will return to competition next weekend at the Boston University Valentine Invitational.

For breaking the school record and setting a new personal best, Schudrowitz has been named The Herald’s Athlete of the Week.

Herald: What were your expectations going into the meet?

Schudrowitz: I had kind of a difficult cross country season in the fall, so my expectations going into the race were just to get back into the feeling of racing and get back to how I felt last year racing track. I didn’t expect to PR or anything, but I just wanted to feel good in the race and see where my fitness levels were at.

How did the race feel? Did you think that you had set a new PR when you finished?

It was definitely a fun race; it felt really good. It was definitely the best I’ve felt running a mile in a long time. The mile was my race in high school, but for the last two years in track I’ve done mostly three-kilometer courses and I did a five-kilometer course last year, so I was really happy with how this one went. I knew that we were on pace for a PR. From the start, I could latch on to the three people in front of me, so that was really exciting, and I knew that I felt good during the race and I just went with it and it turned out well.

How do you prepare yourself mentally for a race?

You have to really be in a confident place with your training and just know that the training is there beneath you and that you’re just ready to put it all out there on the track. You have to convince yourself that you’re in the best possible state that you can be in for that particular race, no matter what little mishaps happen on the way to get there.

You’ve competed in cross country and other distance events. Do you have a favorite?

Yeah, my favorite event is probably the 3K, which I will be running next weekend in Boston again. It’s longer than the mile, a little less than double the distance and it’s just more time on the track, so there’s more time for interesting things to happen.

When did you initially get into the sport?

I played soccer for 10 years, and then I switched to running my sophomore spring of high school. (I was) a little late in the game, but my sister had been a runner in college at a Division III school, and she loved it, so I just thought I should try it out and see how it went, and I’m really happy with that decision. I’m really grateful to be running in college and to have some success also in college. I just hope for the best moving forward.

What’s your go-to race day breakfast?

Definitely oatmeal. I love chocolate oatmeal­ —  it’s delicious­. And probably some peanut butter — we’re all obsessed with peanut butter! I like animal crackers before a race, that’s one of my favorites just to snack on so you’re not hungry during the race. They’re nice and dry, so it soaks up some water.

The track and field teams have had a strong start to the season. Looking ahead, what are your aims for the upcoming meets?

I hope to run a competitive 3K time definitely. I might run the 5K at our conference meet, depending on race plans. I probably won’t run the mile again, but we have a really great team, really competitive — I wouldn’t be surprised if someone breaks the mile record again, if they run it. It’s just been really awesome seeing the team grow and advance from the cross country season, and I really hope it keeps going. We’ve got some momentum, so it’s exciting.

This article has been edited for clarity and length.

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