Joy SpearChief-Morris of Lethbridge, Alta. is a Canadian 100m hurdler who has her sights set on the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. The University of Western Ontario graduate took some time to train in California after finishing her undergraduate degree, but she’s back in London, Ont. now and excited about training at home.
Canadian Running: Who is your running idol? Joy SpearChief-Morris: Allyson Felix. This goes back to the 2012 Olympics, when I remember watching her dominate in so many events.
CR: When did you start to love the sport of track and field? JSCM: Track and field was my favourite event at sports day in elementary school. I remember I loved the high jump. It wasn’t until university that my passion for track really developed because I was a multi-sport athlete all through school.
CR: What’s the biggest difference between Alberta and Ontario? JSCM: I think it’s really flat in Ontario, which sounds so counterintuitive. I grew up about an hour from the Rockies so I never felt like Alberta was all that flat, but Ontario seems that way.
CR: What’s your coffee order? JSCM: Blonde roast americano, black.
CR: Who has been the most influential person to your track and field career? JSCM: Probably Derrick Johnston who was my coach in university and is still one of my coaches. I don’t think I would be running if it wasn’t for him taking chance on me.
CR: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? JSCM: I don’t think there is anything I would change about myself. I took me a long time to become confident, and I’m finally confident in who I am. So no, I wouldn’t change anything.
CR: What does the coach-athlete relationship mean to you? JSCM: I think it’s one of the most important things that can lead to an athlete’s success. Now I have Vicky Crowley who is my main coach along with Derrick. Both of them combined have been really influential to my training. After my year in the states, realized just how important the coach athlete-relationship is to me.
CR: What’s your dream training location? JSCM: I used to train in California, which I thought was my ideal training location but I didn’t end up loving it. Honestly, snowy Ontario isn’t so bad.
CR: Something you can’t live without? JSCM: Hair products. Right now I’m using this one called Up North Naturals.
CR: What do you have planned for 2019? JCSM: I’m hoping to make some national teams this year. The FISU University Games and Pan Am Games are my two big goals. I’m also hoping to go to grad school in the fall for a Masters of Political Science specializing in Transitional Justice.