The unheralded 24-year-old turned some heads with a 2:13:41 debut at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials.
If Ricky Flynn wasn’t on your list of runners to watch at last month’s U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, you’re likely not alone.
The 24-year-old Flynn, a 2009 graduate of Lynchburg College, a small Division III school in Lynchburg, Virginia, had never run a marathon prior to last month’s Trials in Houston. He made his 26.2-mile debut one worth remembering, however, crossing the finish line in 2:13:41 to place 12th on American marathoning’s biggest stage.
A seven-time All-American at Lynchburg, Flynn captured the NCAA Division III cross country title in 2009. Upon completing his undergraduate studies, Flynn enrolled in a two-year grad program at his alma mater, earning his MBA last spring. For the past two-and-a-half years he’s been working 35 hours per week at Riverside Runners, a specialty running store in Lynchburg, while focusing on increasing his training load and dropping his personal bests. Last spring Flynn posted his fastest times ever on the track, running 13:59 for 5,000 meters and 29:21 for 10,000. He qualified for the Olympic Marathon Trials with a 64:15, seventh-place finish at the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon last October.
Competitor.com caught up with Flynn a couple weeks after his impressive debut marathon and got his thoughts on the race, a look at his preparation and a preview of what’s next on the up-and-coming marathoner’s agenda.
Competitor.com: Has your 12th-place finish sunk in yet?
Ricky Flynn: It’s definitely sunk in now. I’ve had some time to reflect on it and I’m still pretty excited about how it went and I’m very, very happy about my first marathon. Nothing really went wrong as far as hydration or any issues like that. It just kind of opened my eyes up to what’s possible over the next four years.
How did you recover from the race and what have you been up to since then?
I don’t think [the race] affected me all that much. I know my legs are probably still pretty beat up. I know if I were to go run a race I’d realize how bad my legs hurt, but I was able to run the day after the race and the day after that. I just ran 30 minutes those two days to kind of shake the legs out, then I took about a week off of no running. I started back up again and just did every other day, a few miles. I’m back into it now five days a week. I think I recovered nicely. I was in the pool swimming a week after and I let my legs feel a little bit better from the water and I’ve been icing a lot and doing the things that were necessary. I think that helped a lot. I’m back to running now on a normal schedule.