In the wake of his fantastic showing at the World Athletics Championships and Zurich Diamond League, Kerr participated for the second time at the San Diego Half-Marathon which begs the question: Is there a possibility that he might transition to another discipline or will he stay in his lane?

Kerr tries half-marathon

Josh Kerr has competed in 1500-meter events for the majority of his athletic career. His two most noteworthy wins came in the World Athletics Championships this year, where he defeated the overwhelming favorite and Olympic gold medalist Jakob Ingebrigtsen, and the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, where he won a bronze medal.

For two consecutive years, however, the 26-year-old has participated in the San Diego Half-Marathon and shown great potential. Even though it was a much longer distance than he was accustomed to running (19,597.5m more in total), Kerr was able to outpace most of the formidable road runners and shock the crowd. 

On December 22, 2022, Kerr made his debut appearance and recorded an impressive time of 63:44, placing fourth overall. 

Why he joined and what he did to get ready for it

Kerr mentioned during one of his post-competition interviews that he had done a nine-mile tempo run earlier in the fall and felt he could push it to 16 to 17-mile long runs after that. His coach, Danny Mackey, then suggested that he finish his ten weeks of training with a half-marathon, which Kerr agreed to without much hesitation.

Prior to the race, his coach made him run 13 miles instead of 17 miles. Kerr then ran one-mile distances six times, with a recovery time of two minutes in between.

Second half-marathon

In his second time at the San Diego Half-Marathon, Kerr improved on his previous record and ran an astonishing time of 61:51—that’s around 4:42 mile pace.

The CITIUS Magazine first broke the news on X.


Following his second stellar performance at the race, will Kerr consider trying his hand at road running? There are examples in history of successful athletes who have made the transition. Two-time Berlin Marathon Champion Tigist Assefa is one such example who has raced in a variety of events in the past, including the 400 meters, the 4×400 meters relay, the 800-meter, and the 10,000 meters, before embracing the marathon.

Another illustration is the two-time Olympic gold medalist Eliud Kipchoge, who began his career competing in 5000-meter competitions before switching to marathons.

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