Preseason Q&A with the 2016 New Balance Outdoor 2 mile national champion and Michigan's top 5K XC returner, Noah Jacobs.
2015 was a very competitive year for Michigan cross country. What were your favorite moments from last season?
My favorite moment of xc in 2015 would be when my teammate Blake Watson came back from injury and we won the Greater Lansing Championships that day. Breaking 15 at Portage would be my favorite individual memory.
Moving into the indoor and outdoor track seasons, you took a lot of time off your previous PRs, what was the biggest difference make for your track training?
The biggest difference would have been trusting my training and just going for it. The time drop was because I went all out and ran it on my own when the year before I was running to win and the races did not go out as fast. My mileage had increased and my intervals had their intensity raised.
You dominated Michigan distance running during the 2016 track season, how important was it to prove yourself on the national stage in the New Balance Outdoor 2 Mile, and what does that national title mean to you?
I wanted to represent Michigan well and prove that we are still an elite distance running state. The title was special to be able to represent Corunna and Michigan well and to put myself more on the map as a runner. Was awesome to see all of my hard work from the season pay off that big in the final race of the season.
Going into the summer, has your pre season training changed at all building up to your final year of high school XC?
My training has remained the same but just with higher mileage. Currently I am running above 75 miles a week.
What's the hardest workout you have ever done?
Hardest workout ever was 24 SIs as we call them. 24 400s on our cross course at 1:08 with 200 rest in between every one and after every set (4 intervals) you got 400 meter rest. 6 miles of 400 intervals was tough.
What are your favorite and least favorite XC courses, and why?
My favorite course is the Greater Lansing Championships course at Ledge Meadows Golf Course. I have always raced great there and the course is very fast with smooth sloping hills and great footing.
My least favorite course is the course at Durand High school. The course is closer to 3.25 miles and it has a man made hill in the middle of the course that you run twice that is a pain.
Which runners do you view as role models?
My role models that are runners would be Bernard Lagat, Lopez Lomong, my coach Bryan Heid, my former teammate Blake Watson, and Matthew Centrowitz.
Looking further ahead in the season, 14 out of the top 20 at Foot Locker Midwest last year have graduated, but there are a lot of strong juniors returning. What do you need to improve from your race last year to break into the top 10 in 2016?
I believe that I just need to stay healthy and have a good clean start and put myself into a position to qualify. Last year I had a poor start and got boxed in and never gave myself a shot at running for that top 10 spot.
What are your goals for XC 2016?
2 goals for the 2016 XC Season
1- Team State Championship
2- Break Dathan Ritzenhein's State Record
Footlocker Goals will appear after states.
Who are some of the people who have helped support you through your running career?
My parents and coaches big time. My friends and family have been crucial in my success. My teammates are big time in pushing me and giving everything that they have to help me so I give everything that I have to help them. Blake Watson has been my most helpful teammate, my coaches Jason Beldyga and Bryan Heid have been monumental, my parents Gary and Diane Jacobs have supported me and driven me places, bought running gear and helped me with what I needed and my brother Ben Jacobs has pushed me to an extreme as well (watch out for him this year as well).
Rapid Fire Questions:
Favorite post-race food?
Track or XC?
Best pump up song?
'Who Gon Stop Me" Kayne West & Jay Z
Toughest Michigan athlete to compete against?
Olympic event you are most excited to watch?
Half tights or short shorts?
New Balance or Altra
Mile or 2 Mile?