Athlete Sit-Down: Shelby Allen

We got a chance to talk to Berkley senior, Shelby Allen, already posting one of the best triple jumps in Michigan history.


Personal Records:

60 Meter Dash - 8.12

60 Meter Hurdles - 9.65

100 Meter Dash - 13.03

200 Meter Dash - 28.12

High Jump - 4-8

Long Jump - 17-7/25

Triple Jump - 38-10.5


Michigan MileSplit: You've already had a fantastic season jumping and are currently ranked #7 for the Triple Jump in the Nation. What have you done to get yourself in such great shape, this early in the season?

Shelby Allen: I have been lifting weights twice a day, attending practices 3 times a week where I focus on plyometrics and focus on ab workouts at home.  Triple jump is an event that takes a strong core as well as intense coordination to combine all three phases so I have to keep my body and mind strong. Also, I have been competing at least once a week. This is really important as I do not have a pit to train in, so meets are my only opportunity to put it all together on the runway and in the sand. .

MI MileSplit: Do you wish triple jump was an event for outdoor in the state?

SA: Yes I wish it was outdoor because then I could continue training throughout the year.  Right now, I have to change my focus while outdoor is in season, until summer club comes up again. I don’t really understand why it isn’t included as a high school outdoor event.  It’s an event that is very different.  The technique can be hard but it makes it even more of a challenge. I think all kids should have an opportunity to try it.

MI MileSplit: Have you started thinking about where you are going to school next year? Planning to jump wherever you go, I assume?

SA: I would like to go to Illinois State University next year. It has a strong Division One track team and an excellent actuarial science program which is my major. 

MI MileSplit: What is the one thing you are trying to accomplish this indoor season? What about outdoor?

SA: I have set a goal to try and reach 39 feet in triple jump. I would love to compete internationally for the US and from looking at standards for this level of competition, I am not too far behind. If I keep training hard, I think I can do it. As for outdoor, I would like to finish my senior year as having been a state qualifier all four years in long jump and make all state again.  I think my triple jump training has helped my form in long jump and I will have a good jumping season. 

MI MileSplit: How/when did you get involved with track?

SA: I competed in gymnastics for 12 years and was on the national power tumbling team. Although this was very exciting, in 7th grade, I decided to use my speed to try something different.  I found it really easy to transfer my skills.  Long jump for me is like running up to a vault.  Triple jump is a series of leaps on floor. But gymnastics was a very judgmental sport—form had to be perfect and if your toes weren’t pointed, you lost.  In track, it didn’t matter how “pretty” I rounded a corner, but rather, whether I got to the finish first. From there, I fell in love.

MI MileSplit: Do you like the current format for indoor, a little laid-back and getting to compete against all division kids. Or do you wish you could just run for your school during the winter?

SA: I believe there is competition at every level.  I think it is a great experience to meet people from all over the state and compete against the best, regardless of whether they are D1, 2 or 3. I also get an opportunity to train with a great group of athletes and coaches in my club during winter. If this was strictly high school in the winter, I would not have met some of my closest friends.  This variety has allowed me to excel.


Quick Q's

MI MileSplit: Facebook or Twitter (or Instagram)?

SA: Twitter: It allows me to keep up with so many people.

MI MileSplit: Winter or summer?

SA: Summer: It’s Michigan, where it snows one minute and is 80 degrees the next.  I like to run without 3 layers on. 

MI MileSplit: Favorite place for breakfast?

SA: Nip and Tuck: It’s a small home grown restaurant in Berkley where everyone knows each other.  There is always good food and better conversation.

MI MileSplit: Movie you just saw or want to see? 

SA: I just recently saw Frozen and loved it.  I’m really a big kid at heart and a closet Disney lover.  Give me a princess or some Pixar and I am content.