In one of the deepest time periods in U.S middle-distance running ever, Hanna Green is the next new 800m star. After a breakout year in 2019, Hanna is looking to prove that she can consistently post strong results. Coming into 2019 with a respectable PR of 2:00.09 from the 2018 US Outdoor Championships, she took over a second off her time with a time of 1:58.75 at the Prefontaine Classic. Hanna wasn’t done after this, improving her time to 1:58.19 while taking 2nd at the 2019 US Outdoor Championships. Perhaps her greatest accomplishment of 2019 was winning the Diamond League meet in Paris in 1:58.39, beating some of track and field’s greatest 800m runners.
Like many other distance runners, Hanna started out playing soccer. In eighth grade however, she quit the team because she didn’t like her coach and she decided to go out for cross country. After running her first race in training shoes, her parents told her they wouldn’t get her spikes until she won her first race. In the next race, she dominated the field for first place. Hanna ran throughout high school and then was recruited for Virginia Tech. She realized she had an opportunity to turn professional her junior year of college, and after a successful senior year that goal came into existence as she signed with OTC Elite.
The change of scenery from college athletics proved to be tough initially for Hanna. “My first-year transitioning to OTC Elite was difficult, but after I got comfortable with the training and changes in atmosphere, I was really able to make big improvements to my running,” stated Hanna. Being able to train with some of the best athletes the US has to offer also played a big role in her development. Green cited teammate Francine Niyonsaba as one of her biggest supporters and inspirations in the sport. “Being able to train with Francine has been amazing. Her honesty and work athlete have taught me a lot about the athlete I want to be,” explained Green. Green also cited the role her parents played in her development. They never pushed her to run and made sure not to put any pressure on her from a young age.
As Green looks to 2020, an Olympic year, like many others has her eyes on a medal in Tokyo. Along with this, she stated that she’d like to improve her 800m time, and work on racing some miles during the early indoor season. Green noted that none of this would be possible without the support she has received from the USATF Foundation which has impacted her career in so many ways. She has been able to improve her nutrition and recovery, something that is so vital to professional athletes. She is also able to get access to better flights, which improves wear and tear on an athlete and helps reduce stress when traveling to meets around the country.