Spotlight Athlete: Isaiah Duke

Edmond Memorial High School senior Isaiah Duke is one of the top quarter-milers in the state of Oklahoma. As a junior Duke won the 400 meter state champion and is looking to defend his title as a senior. See how he began his journey in the sport, the road to the top, and his plans to follow in the footsteps of one of the greatest quarter-miler the United States has ever seen. 

How did you get started in track and field?

I started running track in junior high when I lived in Kansas. I ran for a summer team called the Wichita Road Runners. That is when track became more serious.

When did you move to Oklahoma?

I moved to Oklahoma in 2008, but I couldn’t run track my freshman year due to some things. My sophomore year I was hurt and pulled my hamstring and was out for the year.

Sounds like a rough start.  Afterwards you bounced back having success that summer and then into your junior year correct?

Yes, in the summer of 2009 I won the 400 in both AAU Nationals and USATF Junior Olympics.  My junior year in high school I was a state champion in the 400 and second in the long jump. This year I plan on setting new records in both events. My high school career was a little bumpy at times, but I kept on moving and learned things from it to try and do better next time.

At the end of February you went out to Seattle to run in the Brooks PR Invitational. What was that experience like?

That was really cool I got to meet some new people and some people I ran against before.

The outdoor season began March 1st. How has it gone so far?

 I jumped 23 feet, but I could have jumped a 25 but I landed wrong. I ran 47 in the 400.

What's a typical workout week? 

Every other day is a hard workout day which consists of 100,200,300,400,300,200,100 and then work with the long jump.

Are there any meets you have circled on your calendar?

Texas Relays and our state meet. At both these meets I really improve my times. I want to run low 45 or 44.

Next year you are going to run at Baylor University. What are you looking forward to most?

I am looking forward to running on the 4x400 relay team, running faster times, jumping longer jumps, and getting my degree. Baylor felt like the school to do it at. I want to run like “MJ” (Michael Johnson).

What do you like to do outside of running?

I like architecture. I build anything from commercial building to just homes. I design them on my laptop and then make a model of it.

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