Episode 23

A Javelin Thrower's Guide to Letting Go with Kara Winger

As Kara looks to qualify for her fifth Olympics, in Tokyo, she sat down with David to talk about what inspired her as a little girl who didn’t even know what a javelin was, some of her sport’s finer points, and the mental and physical balance of the sport and how she utilizes that to help set big but achievable goals.  

Kara Winger, three-time Olympian and 8-time U.S. National Champion, is one of the best at what may be track and field’s most idiosyncratic sport: javelin throwing.

Kara still owns the American record, which was set in 2010, with a throw of 66.7 meters. She also competed in 5 World Championships, and at last year’s Worlds in Doha, Qatar she finished 5th– the best result of any American woman, ever.

As Kara looks to qualify for her fifth Olympics, in Tokyo, she sat down with David to talk about what inspired her as a little girl who didn’t even know what a javelin was, some of her sport’s finer points- especially technique and what she calls “the Zen moment of the javelin throw,” and the mental and physical balance of the sport and how she utilizes that to help set big but achievable goals.

Nutrition, of course, is a key part of Kara’s preparation and performance. And with a degree in fitness, nutrition and health from Purdue University, she’s refreshingly open and insightful about weight and body image in sport. We talked about how her views have evolved—and about how it felt to hit a new milestone when she stepped on a scale last spring.

The US Olympic Track & Field Trials aren’t until June, but you can follow Kara’s lead up at karawinger.com—which also where she publishes her blog, Javelin Journal.

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