News & Updates
Five Minutes With... Maiya Christini
We focus on the 21-year-old Wellington Harrier who has made a big impact in 2019 by winning the national senior women’s cross country title and a 5000m bronze medal at the New Zealand Track & Field Championships.
What is your best athletics quality?
My biggest strength is probably my determination. Once I commit to something I tend to keep going until I finish it – whether that be a hard track workout or pushing hard to pass the person in front of me during a race.
Why would you encourage anyone to try athletics?
What I love most about athletics is that there is an event for everyone. I’ve also met so many different people though athletics and made amazing friendships.
Who was your first coach and how did they influence your career?
My first coach was Barry Magee at ACA club in Year 9. Barry has been in the sport for a long time and won a bronze medal in the marathon at the 1960 Rome Olympics. He had a lot of knowledge to share and was inspiring to me as a young runner.
What are your athletics weaknesses?
My biggest weakness is that I lack confidence in myself. I often hold back because I don’t believe in myself enough to trust that I’ve worked hard to prepare for a race.
What is the funniest things you’ve seen on an athletics track?
Watching medley relay changeovers are always entertaining. There’s always so much going on with teams running in different orders which can mean watching someone running an 800m leg getting passed by a sprinter running 200m, which makes it hard to pick the winner until the end.
What is your favourite athletics session?
My favourite session is probably a Sunday morning long run with good company at a scenic location. Once you warm into them they seem to go past really quickly and they’re always a good way to end the training.
What is the greatest thing you’ve witnessed in an athletic stadium?
Watching Kelsey Forman run an amazing 2000m steeplechase qualifier for the 2015 World U20 Championships at Nationals. After being so close to running the time all season, it was amazing to see someone that I’d run against since I was aged 11, qualify to run at a meet of that level.
Who has been your toughest rival?
I’ve been lucky to have run against so many talented women and I don’t have anyone that I would say is a particular rival but as a junior there was nothing quite like the competitiveness of the Colgate Games.
If you could star in another sport which sport would it be?
I played soccer all through school and it was hard having to give it up, so I definitely think I’d still be playing if it wasn’t for running.
When travelling to a meeting what is the most important item in your suitcase?
Spikes and the racing uniform is always a must. Every time I go somewhere I always worry that I’m going to forget it I and have to check my bag multiple times.
What is your greatest regret?
I don’t have any specific regrets but I think there are always times I look back and wish I’d done things differently, so I try to learn from them for next time.
Who is the person who most admire?
I most admire my parents. They’re my biggest supporters and I know that I can always go to them for advice when I need it. They’ve devoted a lot of time to helping me throughout my time in the sport whether that is driving me to training and races, keeping me company on the bike during runs and being amazing parents to my siblings and me.
What are you most scared of?
I get nervous talking to people that I don’t know, so making phone calls is a bit of a fear and I have to rehearse in my head what I’m going to say. It’s something I have to get over though because at the age of 21 I can’t expect my mum to make appointments for me.
What is your favourite movie and why?
I’m don’t watch many movies but I’d have to say my favourite movie would have to be an old classic like the Sound of Music.
When was the last time you looked at your athletics medals?
Most of my medals are back at home in Auckland. However, I have a few special ones hanging up on the wall of my room.
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