Under ordinary circumstances, Jordan Timmons would be pursuing personal records in the 800- and 1,500-meter runs today at the Bulls Invitational.
Considering it’s the Ball State sophomore’s first competition since Sept. 13, Timmons has concerns that take precedence over numbers on a stopwatch.
The former Center Grove runner was only three meets into Ball State’s cross-country season when she was forced to redshirt due to a stress fracture in her right shin. The injury sidelined her for the recent indoor track season, as well.
“I’m just going out there and letting the times take care of themselves,” Timmons said of the invitational, hosted by the University of South Florida.
Timmons’ six-month hiatus began only eight days after she placed 31st at the Ohio Invitational in a time of 25 minutes, 35.22 seconds. Her college PR in cross-country for the Cardinals in 6K events is 23:27.0 set at the Great Lakes Invitational.
In time, Timmons hopes to be able to chase down every one of her cross-country and track PRs with renewed confidence. This will require the type of training involved in going from track season to cross-country and then from cross-country to indoor track.
Yes, there are differences.
“When track season is over, we’ll take a week or two weeks off and slowly build back up to longer runs. It’s definitely a lot of building your endurance,” Timmons said. “Going into track the biggest thing, for me at least, is getting my speed back up.
“Lifting weights helps because you’re building your muscles, and we run a lot of sprints, too. The PRs are tougher in track because it’s hard if you’re a tenth of a second away.”
Timmons said cross-country is more relaxed when it comes to the pursuit of PRs. At Ball State she runs both 5K and 6K events — ample opportunity to glance down at the watch she’s wearing after the starter’s pistol sounds.
In track, Timmons is out for PRs in shorter races. The need for a watch isn’t as great, particularly with so many coaches and meet workers shouting a runner’s time as an event is going on.
“With cross-country you usually know where you’re at (time-wise) and where you’re going to finish after the first mile,” she said.
Timmons’ PR in the outdoor 800 is 2:22.53 (nearly four seconds better than her time at the 2013 Shelbyville Regional) and 4:57.68 in the 1,500.
In the back of her mind these are the numbers she’s chasing.
Just not today.
THE TIMMONS FILE
Name: Jordan Timmons
Family: Parents, Jason and Lynette; sister, Morgan
High school: Center Grove (2013)
Major: Exercise science