By Dean “The Sportsman” Greenaway
A month into training with new coach Lennox Graham, 400m Hurdler Kyron McMaster gives an insight on his training regiment as compared to what he did before that saw him running the fastest time in the world over the barriers in 2017.
McMaster, a pall bearer for his former coach Dag Samuels who was was buried on October 21, said they did some strength work but with Graham, there’s a greater focus in that area.
“His specialty seems to be strength so the majority of the day every day, it’s basically getting the core strong and he’s just building on what on what I already have, so it’s just to stay focused,” he said. “With the speed I already have and the strength I had this year, if next year goes anything similar to this year, plus with the strength that I would be gaining, because I’ll be gaining some sort of strength from the workouts every day, next year should be good.”
McMaster’s 47.80 seconds time that makes him the No 28 performer All Time in the 400m Hurdles, said for him, it’s not about the physical strength but the mental strength, which will play a hefty role in his next season.
In past, he said when he went to train, he was with Samuels, but now he has to adapt to the routine and the daily grind. He said he used to train at 4:30 a.m., go home, return to train again, then play dominos, eat some food and chat with Samuels as best friends would.
“But now, it’s train and go home and that’s all I do now,” said McMaster who’s training in Clemson, South Carolina. “I have some family members with me that keep my company so mentally, it plays a strong role because I don’t have that strong bond with the coach as yet since I’ve just started training. The bond I had with coach (Samuels) was something different. I could have message him at 3 a.m., to come pick me up in any situation, that was the kind of bond we had. Losing somebody like that out your life will take time.”
McMaster said he has been adjusting to the loss of Samuels who has been his only coach, haven’t moved on with it but has been dealing with it on a daily basis. The 20 year old said instead of planning things in advance, everything is now day to day and he doesn’t want his mind wondering too far. He doesn’t focus on what he will do after training as in the past but what he does in training.
“Any free time I have, I reflect on the good times and accept that coach is gone and live on the memories,” he said, noting that he’s now working with Graham and adjusting to the new things being thrown at him and he’s not afraid of a challenge.
“I hope that when it comes time to roll, the body responds the way it needs to respond,” he said. “Right now, I think the adjustment is going good. The biggest challenge I have right now is coping with the weather. I’m accustomed to training in 80 degrees and have to adjust to training in 30, 45 degrees under those conditions.”
As he prepares for the 2018 season, McMaster who trained with his Fast Lane Track Club teammates under Samuels, is now training alongside another hurdler from Nigeria. With Fast Lane, it was like a family and his teammates—though not hurdlers—had different strengths that helped him in workouts. With a training partner, they both have different strengths.
“I have to do a lot of things on my own now (as opposed to being with Fast Lane teammates) just focusing and following through,” he said.