Kaniya Johnson is Aiming High this Season before Move to Ga.

scrunners catches up with White Knoll's Kaniya Johnson the week of Coaches Classic region meets. Johnson talks about the season, being part of a military family and what's next in life's journey.

Coach statement from Alan Alvarez: I must say it's been a pleasure growing with Kaniya and I say that literally. As a young coach (not by my age), I've incorporated my technology background dealing with data and saw training to performance trends as my son ran at White Knoll. With the blessings of Coach DeAngelo Bryant, then head coach, I was able to inject analytics into his training which paid dividends his senior year winning 5A State in the 100m with a 10.57 from an 11.3 the prior year.  So when asked to join White Knoll in 2019, the summer before Kaniya's freshmen year, I put Kaniya through the same methods, reducing the amount of running, emphasizing plyometrics, mechanics and maximizing recovery, Kaniya took to it like a sponge running 7.57 60m SC#1 indoor and winning 5A State in the 100m with an 11.66 her freshman year from a 12.3 the prior year. 

Now, don't get me wrong, Kaniya would have have been successful with or without analytics or me for that matter. Kaniya has a solid family base willing to travel across the country for competitions, they are truly engaged. Kaniya is the hardest worker I've come across, no kill switch. The only way to dial her back is to shut her down. We are working on it. 

On a final note, as it's been reviled, Kaniya is from a military family and have received orders to relocate this coming June. As I've had time to pore more elite style training into Kaniya than my own son, this cuts deep. I really haven't processed it fully. We've agreed to push a little beyond our projected path however must keep in mind risk of injury.

As I stated, Kaniya will be successful wherever she go and has been a stand up student athlete in the classroom and on the track. A bright future I'm sure however for now, we will continue to focus on what we can control.

Read the interview below this video.

How have you looked at what you have achieved this season so far? 

I am very proud of my accomplishments so far this year. I was able to drop my 200m time down to 24.10 during indoor season; huge improvement from last year. I still have some areas that I need to work on, but with the help from Coach Alan I'm sure I will reach my goals. 

What type of things are you doing to adapt this season during the pandemic? 

First, I am grateful to have a track season during a pandemic; with that being said I have adapted fairly well. I will continue to do my part by social distancing, wearing my mask and I also encourage my teammates to do the same. The new safety guidelines have not impacted my training regime, in fact it make me work harder due to the limited amount of track meets this year. 

Any challenges? Please explain. What's your motivation for the season? 

My biggest challenge is preparing to move to Valdosta, Ga. in a few months due to my mother being in the Air Force. My concern is leaving the only coach I ever had. He has motivated me throughout the past three years and I credit him for my success. Additionally, my parents are my motivation as well. Prior to every track meet my family and I pray together and I will set goals that I want to achieve for that meet. Finally, I love everything about track and field and I am the happiest when I am on the track. 

What goals do you have? 

I am aiming high this season! My goal is to run 11.33 in the 100m, 23.65 in the 200m and 54.25 in the 400m. Also, I want to rank in the top 10 nationally in one of my events. 

Final question, what do you hope to achieve this weekend at Coaches Classic Region qualifier?

My overall goal is to PR in all my events and win. This will be my last chance to compete in the Coaches Classic and I do not want to come in second place again.

Anything else you want to add?

Thank you for this opportunity!