First there was Sunday, then there was next Monday. Like I always say, don't ask a mom right after she's had a baby when she's having another.
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — Haile Gebrselassie added another fast finish to his record-setting career: The Ethiopian star called off his retirement after eight days.
Gebrselassie said Monday he had changed his mind and would run until the 2012 London Olympics. The 37-year-old marathon world-record holder had announced his retirement after pulling out of the New York City Marathon on Nov. 7 with 10 miles to go because of a knee injury.
"I want to thank everybody who supported me last week and gave me trust that I could still continue my career and that I can continue my road to London 2012," he said in a statement. "Running is in my blood and now my mind is clear again I can continue competing."
Gebrselassie had long insisted he wanted to compete through the London Games. After his retirement announcement at a post-race news conference, he immediately began reassessing his sudden decision.
"My announcement in New York was my first reaction after a disappointing race," Gebrselassie said on Twitter. "When my knee is better again I will start focusing on my next race."
Gebrselassie's manager, Jos Hermens, told The Associated Press last week that Gebrselassie was in an emotional state when he made the surprise announcement in New York.
"I don't want to complain any more after this, which means it's better to stop here," Gebrselassie said at the time.
Hermens went to Ethiopia last weekend to talk to Gebrselassie.
"Gebrselassie took some time to think things over," Hermens said in a statement. "Coming back to Ethiopia, he was overloaded with heartwarming reactions from all over the world."
Gebrselassie has won two Olympic 10,000-meter gold medals and four outdoor world titles. He set the marathon record of 2:03:59 in Berlin in 2008.
Hermens said doctors who examined Gebrselassie's knee in New York found that "he had the knees of a young man" and should not face age-related problems in the lead-up to the London Games.
Gebrselassie runs two schools and several businesses in Ethiopia, including a car dealership, a movie theater and a newly opened hotel.
"I never think about to retire. But for the first time, this is the day," Gebrselassie said after the NYC Marathon. "Let me stop and do other work after this."
He's decided he has more work to do in running first.