The Wisconsin school-record holder in the heptathlon and pentathlon, Georgia Ellenwood, is now in her final season with the Badgers – and she still sees room for improvement.
"I definitely have a new relationship this year with practicing and I definitely look at each practice as kind of transformative," said Ellenwood. "I go into each practice looking for something to improve on. I think in previous years I kind of took competition that way and said ‘I want to run really fast in the competition.’ But, how am I going to run fast in the competition if I’m not putting in the work in practice? I get really excited to compete now because I know I’ve done the work."
Even when Ellenwood didn’t feel like she was putting in the work, she was still getting the results. The 5th-year senior is a two-time Big Ten champion in the indoor pentathlon. She had to red-shirt the 2017 outdoor season because of injury, so that makes her even more eager to see what she can do in her final outdoor season. In 2016, she placed fifth nationally in the heptathlon.
"I think the big thing is to break 6,000 points [in the heptathlon] because I’m so close," said Ellenwood. "That’s very realistic – and then just individual, smaller goals – and then that will lead to the bigger goal."
Breaking 6,000 points would have given Ellenwood a second place finish at the NCAA championship last season. Ellenwood’s teammate all five years at UW-Madison, Casie Pawlik, says the sky’s the limit.
"We’ve only had two meets in this outdoor season so far and she’s at the top of her game," said Pawlik. "So I think outdoor she will definitely be the contender for the championship. And I think at NCAA’s, again, she’ll be right there with those top athletes."
Ellenwood is participating in her first heptathlon of the season this week at the Bryan Clay Invitational in California. After her season is done, she’s hoping to find a sponsor and run professionally.