The 26-year-old is leading by example after picking up several wins this year. In May, Omanyala was the first to cross the finish line in the men’s 100 meters on the World Athletics Continental Tour. The following month, he again won first place in the 100m after a photo-finish at the African Athletics Championships. And Omanyala won Kenya its first 100m gold medal in 60 years at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
The sprinter, who qualified for the 100m semi-finals of the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics, says he is continuously training for the next competition.
For Omanyala, the race is “90% mental”. Along with rigorous workouts and practice, the track star says her trick to keeping calm is to visualize the event for weeks before race day.
“There are always two sides to a race: either you win or you lose. So I always visualize both, so when I get into a race and something happens, it doesn’t hit me so loud because I’ve already visualized that,” he said.
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Reflecting on his career, Omanyala says one of his greatest achievements was setting the African record for the 100 meters at the Kip Keino Classic in 2021, despite missing gold by 0.01 seconds. With a time of 9.77, Omanyala became Africa’s fastest sprinter and the ninth fastest man in history.
“I remember never recovering for about a month. I was always thinking, ‘Is this a dream? I don’t believe that’s happening,'” he said.
Now, the sprinter is aiming to break the 100m world record, currently held by Usain Bolt with a time of 9.58 seconds. “I’m looking to run 9.6 this season and then scrap it in the near future,” he said.
Watch the video above to see how Omanyala is training the next generation of sprinters.