At the Olympic Marathon Trials in February, Jared Ward crossed the finish line in his Saucony Type A shoes just 40 seconds behind Meb Keflezighi, securing the third spot on the U.S. team.
“It still seems like a surreal dream at this point,” the 27-year-old marathoner said about making his Olympic debut in Rio.
To prepare for the games, Ward has been training in the Saucony Zealot ISO 2, logging 100 to 120 miles a week in Park City, Utah, where he takes advantage of the high elevation and thin air.
Aside from achieving a personal-record performance with hopes of finding himself on the podium, Ward is most looking forward to spending time with his teammates, specifically Keflezighi and Galen Rupp. “These are guys I’ve grown up watching and idolizing that I’ll now be on the team with. They’re a couple of the best distance runners America has ever had, and I look forward to the opportunity to spend time with them and learn from them,” he said.
But Ward also has another event to look forward to in the coming months: He and his wife, Erica, are expecting a baby girl in September.