In our RT Snap Q&A series, we’ve had the privilege of interviewing some of the world’s best runners, delving into their extraordinary journeys, celebrating their achievements, and exploring the unwavering dedication that defines their careers.

Isobel Batt-Doyle

  • Born on September 19, 1995.
  • Made debut for Australia at the 2017 World University Games in the 10,000m.
  • NCAA outdoor 10,000m bronze medalist in 2019, earning All-America First Team honors. Also made the All-America Second Team in the indoor 5000m.
  • Achieved significant personal bests in 2020 under coaching by Riley Cocks, including a second place in the Zatopek 10,000m with a time of 31:43.26.
  • Finished second at the Australian 10,000m Championships in January 2021.
  • Secured a place in the 5000m at the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics with a personal best time of 15:04.10.
  • Competed in the Tokyo Olympics, finishing 15th in the 5000m heats.
  • Set a world female parkrun best mark of 15:25 at the Aldinga Beach event in Adelaide on 31 December 2022.
  • Ran a personal best of 1:09.27 at the Marugame half marathon in Japan on 5 February 2023.
  • Lowered her 5000m personal best to 14:49.75 in Liege, Belgium on 19 June 2024.

RT:  How did growing up in a family of runners influence your early interest and success in athletics?

Izzi: Growing up in an active family definitely influenced my early interests and success in athletics as it was normalised to be active and competitive from a young age. My parents were both recreational runners and very active, but it was my older sister Immy who really paved the way for me as I followed her out to Little Athletics and always looked up to her and wanted to do what she was doing!

RT: Can you share your experience and emotions when you set the world female parkrun best mark of 15:25 at the Aldinga Beach event in 2022?

Izzi: Over the holiday period my family and I often take part in the local Parkrun down the coast near our beach house and on this occasion, I was using it as a hard hit out training session. I was fortunate to have my partner Riley, his brother Jacob, and another friend Tom run with me that day and it turned out to be pretty good! I had the record in the back of my head but wasn’t sure how I’d go in a training effort in the middle of the holiday period. I hung onto the guys and they really pulled me through the last 2km and I was over the moon when I saw how fast we’d gone! The timekeepers didn’t catch on until about 10 minutes later that it was a World Best and then everyone was celebrating. It was pretty cool to enjoy it with lots of my friends and family there. I probably got just as much media attention for this run than making the Olympics!

RT: Reflecting on your experiences at various World Championships and the Commonwealth Games, what have been the most memorable moments or lessons learned?

Izzi: I’ve been fortunate now to have competed at World Championships in Cross Country, Marathon, and Half Marathon, and at the Olympics and Commonwealth Games on the track. One of the most memorable moments from my major championships is seeing my parents and partner Riley in the grandstand at the Commonwealth Games before my race. It was so special to have them there after competing in Tokyo with no family of spectators there! The biggest lesson I’ve learnt is to embrace every opportunity with an open mind and excitement for the challenge versus fear of failure. You can be as physically prepared as possible but if you can’t cultivate the right mindset it can all fall apart!

 

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RT: How important has your support system, including family, friends, and coaches, been to your success as an athlete?

Izzi: It’s cliche but true to say that it takes a village! I wouldn’t be where I am today without my support system which is my partner Riley, my parents, the RunAsOne community, my training partners at home (shout out Connor Hortle), my coach and manager Nic, and my Melbourne Track Club teammates who I spend so much time on the road with! At the end of the day as a runner, you have to be very internally motivated and disciplined but you can make it a team sport and have a lot of fun along the way too. 

RT: Can you describe a typical week of training for you, including any cross-training or recovery practices you incorporate?

Izzi: It does vary whether I am preparing for track or road/marathon. A typical week of training for me at the moment when I’m not racing is somewhere around 160-170km per week total with three sessions, track Tuesday, threshold Thursday, and hills Saturday. Long run Sunday of two hours and the other days just easy runs of 60/30. I try to do gym 1-2x per week and Pilates for Runners 2-3x per week as well. When I’m home I might do a few elliptical sessions instead of double runs but usually, I’m doing a second run of 7-8km 5-6x per week. 

 

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When I’m preparing for a marathon I’ve got up to over 200km a week and just do two sessions Tuesday track and Friday long marathon session of threshold paced reps with a longer Sunday run of 2.5 hours. My strength also drops during this time and generally just focus on getting through sessions with Pilates.

I think the best recovery practices are good sleep, lots of good food, and massage. I usually get one hour massage a week but while I’m on training camps I have up to three a week! I also take Pillar Performance magnesium powder every night which helps with my recovery and sleep.  

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