|Matt Bilich is a member of the St. Pauls Class of '03. He holds PR's of 4:27 for 1600m, 9:57 3200m, and 15:42 for 3 miles on the roads. Matt has won 3 district titles. He will attend LSU in the fall.|
Louisianarunning.com: Matt, you had an awesome last two weeks of your season, good job. You PR'd for the 1600 by 7 second in one race and qualified for state. Can you tell us about how that went for you?
Matt Bilich: I didn't believe the time at first. The main objective was to make it to state, and before the race I told myself I would run whatever it took to make it, and I was able to follow through.
LR: You are another successful St. Pauls distance runner, evident by your senior year. What was is like to be running in a program that had names come through in recent years such as Franzella, Wiggins, and Gavin? Did you feel you had something to live up to?
MB: At first there was some pressure form the outside to live up to those guys, but eventually I developed a reputation of my own. One thing I attribute to those guys is that I got to witness firsthand the type of hard work it took to become great.
LR: You will be going to LSU in a few short months. Can you tell us why you decided upon LSU? And what do you think about the influx of state caliber runners attending LSU next year also?
MB: All around, LSU would be easier for me. I plan on majoring in kinesiology, and I have been very impressed with LSU's graduate program in that field. I think that with the coming of some of the state's best to LSU is good for running in our state. We have the potential to make a real name for ourselves, and maybe we could attract a few more elite distance runners, this time from around the country.
LR: What do you hope to accomplish in your first year there?
MB: I know that the first year of college is an adjustment for everyone. I hope to contribute to the team any way possible, and set some huge PR's along the way.
LR: How do you plan on training this summer in preparation for 8k?
MB: I plan on slowly building up to higher mileage. In the past, I have gotten hurt or sick when I tried to do too much, too soon. Outside of the long runs and such, I want to get some good cross training in like weights and plyos as well.
LR: What event in track do you want to focus on as a freshman?
MB: I would like to try the mile and 3k out during the indoor season. During outdoor, I'd like to give the 1500 and 5k a shot. I think the steeple would be a fun one to try out too! This is all up to coach though, of course.
LR: How do you plan on studying and running next year? How did you handle training and school this year?
MB: This past year, I managed to balance the two with little trouble. Next year will be different, but I hope to keep them balanced the best that I can.
LR: Do you have a favorite runner?
MB: I have many that I look up to. One that has really made an impact on me is Glenn Cunningham. He overcame adversity to become the world's best at his time. Bob Kennedy is one of my more modern favorites though.
LR: What's one of your favorite workouts?
MB: My sunday morning runs during cross country were my all time favorites. The run was a 10 mile there-and-back course through horse trails behind my house. I got down to about 6:20 pace on those runs towards the end of the season. I liked them because it was just me and the trails, no distractions
LR: What do you enjoy most about running?
MB: I enjoy running with people and by myself. Most of all, I enjoy the stress relief it brings. Whatever is going on in your life, you can go out for a run as a form of meditation/prayer. It gives a person time to think.
LR: As of today, do you see yourself running competitively after college, even if it is just locally?
MB: Yes. I plan to continue running for as long as I have legs.
LR: Thanks man.
MB: You're welcome
Chaz Caiado once asked the question," What if you get scared half to death twice?". He will also be attending LSU in the fall.