Hard work pays dividends for Jeter, writes James Sullivan.

US sprinter Carmelita Jeter has revealed that a change in lifestyle was the reason for her meteoric improvement during her mid to late 20s. Speaking after winning the bronze medal in the 100m at the World Championships in Moscow last night, the multi-medal winner described how she changed her priorities in other to make the step up to world class.

“I would definitely say that my focus changed at that age” remarked the 33 year old veteran. “When you’re younger you like to do young things. You like to have fun and you like to hang out more than you probably should. The biggest change was really my lifestyle.”

Carmelita Jeter

The American has raised a few eyebrows by lowering her personal best for the 100m from 11.48 in 2006 to 10.64 in 2009, a clocking which places her second on the all time list, achieved at the mature age of 29. “ I went to bed earlier, I ate right, I trained hard and my mind set changed. I made track and field my lifestyle instead of just going to practice and going home and doing whatever I wanted to do.”

Jeter, whose impressive resume includes a World title in 2011 and Olympic medals for both 100m and 200m in London last year, also gave advice on how other women can defy the limiting factor of age to achieve their athletic goals. “I would definitely have to say that for somebody who is looking to improve on their times you have to look and see what you are doing outside of practice” she remarked. “You have to make it your lifestyle, Monday through Sunday. It cant just be the days you go to practice.”

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