World of Sport

Why Mo Farah’s training plan may now come under threat

World of Sport

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Mo Farah's incredible ascent to the top of world athletics has undoubtedly come down to numerous factors, but one of them has been his dedicated planning and training.

Farah's devotion to his running has seemingly known no limits as he took off to Kenya, Oregon and other parts of the world to ensure that his preparation was the very best it could be.

The double Olympic champion has given everything to earn the success that he has achieved, but his approach of going wherever would provide the best training environment could now be put under threat.

Kenya's sports minister has suddenly queried why it is that the Brit is allowed to come into their country to rack up vital high-altitude training with all the advantages that it brings.

Indeed, not only that, for Farah finds himself able to train alongside some of the world's top athletes across a broad spectrum of distances on his long trips to the African country.

Minister Hassan Wario appears to have decided that enough is enough after having seen his compatriots lose repeatedly to the 30-year-old at the world's biggest events.

"Why are we allowing Mo Farah to come here and train and then go on to beat us?" Wario is quoted as saying in the Daily Mail.

Farah intends to again use the Rift Valley region in the west of Kenya as his base for a crucial training period early next year, but that could potentially be put in doubt.

The training would all be part of his preparations for making his debut over 26.2 miles at the London Marathon in April, a race that is eagerly anticipated because of his appearance.

It is very unlikely that Wario would seriously attempt to prevent Farah from training in Kenya, but the quotes from the country's sports minister must come as a surprise to the Brit.

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Farah admitted recently that he is now training "a lot harder" including not seeing his daughters for nearly two months as he aims to stay on top.

"I love what I do and I just want to train," Farah told the BBC. "I want that feeling again [winning two Olympic golds] and that makes you more of a fighter than anything else.

"It's been hard in terms of my life because half of the time I am away at training camps," he said. Yesterday I got a bit emotional because I haven't seen my twin girls for nearly two months. I went to pick them up and one of them started crying, she didn't even recognise me and that was hard as a parent when you have been away for so long.

"Sometimes that's what it takes being a true athlete. Being a long distance runner is not easy, it's not as easy as everything else or everyone would be doing what I am doing."

This is not a man who would likely be at all content to compromise his training plan at any cost.

Athletes are notoriously superstitious and keen to retain complete control of everything in relation to their preparation and training, so any interference would be fiercely guarded against.

Farah's move to Oregon, in the Pacific north west of the USA in 2011 for an intensive and detailed training regime set up by his coach Alberto Salazar was also largely credited with taking his running to a new level.

But being able to train in Kenya with many of the world's top athletes and to prepare in a unique and ideally suited environment remains of real importance to an athlete who does not need anything significant disrupting his work.

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