Two-time UAE Olympian Betlhem Desalegn Belayneh is targeting a fourth Dubai Women’s Run title as she is set to return to action next month for the first time in more than a year.
The Ethiopian-born Emirati runner sustained a hamstring injury in Belgium last July, which forced her to withdraw from her 1500m heat at Rio 2016.
Speaking ahead of the Dubai Women’s Run – set to take place on November 17 – the 25-year-old said: “It will be my first time back. I’ve won this race three times and I’m excited to be here. I’m so happy to represent my country.”
Although Desalegn had been sidelined for 13 months, she’s been training away from the track at her base in Addis Ababa.
The four-time Asian champion has moved away from months of gym work to running on the road as she looks to build up her stamina ahead of key races in the new year.
DSC announces the launch of the Dubai Women’s Run 2017, in a press conference held today, which is expected to get over 10000 female runners pic.twitter.com/cyKCPUwlSS
— مجلس دبي الرياضي (@DubaiSC) September 19, 2017
“I was doing some swimming, biking, some physical activation, but now I’m in my routine and it’s going well,” she said.
“I’ve been injured for one year, but it will be my first race back. We are doing running, some speed work and some gym. I’m happy to be back and hopefully to win again.”
On her return to action, Desalegn is aiming for victory in Dubai before turning her focus to preparation for the 2018 World Indoor Championships in Birmingham in March.
She added: “I always want to win. This is my first race. I hope to run faster than I did before and I’m hoping to see my PB here.”
This year’s run will start off from Marasi Business Bay on November 17.