The secret of Khalid Mulazim’s 52.02 American record 400 for M50

Khalid’s 52.02 at ABQ beat the listed WR but not a pending 51.92 by Germany’s Roland Gröger.

Six years after setting a then-WR in the M45 400-meter dash at 2011 Berea nationals, Khalid Mulazim of Cleveland ran a spectacular indoor 51.21 in January — faster than any known M50 400 — better than Fred Sowerby’s fabled 51.39 in 1999. Last weekend, he clocked a 52.02 in the masters exhibition at USATF Indoor Nationals. Turns out the 52.02 deserves supreme appreciation. In a quickie Q&A, Khalid graciously shared a secret about ABQ: He was sick — and told nobody but his wife. “I was shivering so badly that I almost passed out after I returned to the warmup area,” he told me Tuesday. “My body was shutting down slowly.” But he’s one tough cookie — befitting his military roots. (He’s in the Air Force Reserve.) He also shared why his 51.21 at the Spire Institute track in Geneva, Ohio, won’t be submitted for record consideration. It’s a 300-meter indoor track — too big under USATF rules for an American record, where the limit is 200. He’s well aware of the record books but isn’t bragging. (That’s my job.) Below is his 400 WR from 2011 called by Peter Taylor.

My chat with Khalid: Have you gone faster as an M50?

Khalid Mulazim: 51.21 has been my fastest time as a M50. I ran 51.86 last year indoors then labored through injuries during outdoors but managed to win 400 outdoors with 52.12 I believe. (It was 52.11 at Grand Rapids nationals.)

What was ABQ exhibition race like? Did you go out too fast? Feel the elevation?

I never told anyone except my wife that I was suffering from a virus with flu-like symptoms. I was getting sicker by the hour on Saturday and Sunday. I was shivering so badly that I almost passed out after I returned to the warmup area. My body was shutting down slowly. My muscles were weak and not fired up. Had no appetite after Saturday evening. Definitely did not go out too fast. Does not mean I would have won, but I would have broken 52, it was a great and fun atmosphere. I have no voice now.

What’s your indoor season goal? Any more shots at WR?

Khalid, shown back in 2002, isn’t much slower in 2017.

Definitely met my first goal by breaking American record. If WMA does not recognize Roland’s record, then I would have met my second goal. 

What are your meet plans for outdoors?

I have a few outdoor meets lined up, weather permitting 

When will you go for Sowerby outdoor WR of 51.39?

My primary outdoor goal is to be the first M50 to break Sowerby’s record because there are others who have the potential to break it besides Roland.

Do you give any credence to the sub-50 claims by David Kalembo?

I never met Kalembo. I saw his race on YouTube and it really motivated me to train hard to produce fast results once I turned 50. 

What’s your main job now? Still have connection with Air Force?

I’m contemplating retiring from education and the Air Force this summer.

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March 7, 2017

6 Responses

  1. Matt B. - March 7, 2017

    I am sure we will see a 50 point.
    Amazing Khalid!

  2. James Chinn - March 9, 2017


  3. Byrke Beller - March 12, 2017

    That dude is truly amazing!!

  4. Francois Boda - March 12, 2017

    A truly great champion. I expect him to break many world records.

  5. Matt B. - March 13, 2017

    Khalid- care to share any training for us mere mortals?
    Workouts, speed sessions, weights ?

  6. Matt B. - March 24, 2017

    New official WR
    vent 239 M50 400 m
    WMA: R 51.92
    Name Age Team Finals
    1 Gröger, Roland M52 Germany 51.73R
    2 Thomas, Robert M50 United States 53.00
    3 Shute, Marcus W M54 United States 53.79
    4 Ikeno, Masahiro M52 Japan 54.38
    5 Sherar, Michael M53 Canada 54.58
    6 Faucher, Serge M52 Canada 54.90

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