Cross Country Countdown #13

13 days til Club Cross Country Champs. A continuation of looking at the history of Webb cross country highlights!

Race #13 – Julia’s first xc race

2000 New London Invitational- Wisconsin – 4K course

xcstart

I joined cross my senior year after running my first 5K road race sporting my Dennis Rodman kicks in 21:15 (and what might have been my longest run ever) on Labor Day. For my first meet I had no idea what to expect only that I wanted to prove that I was tough and push through the pain that comes from not having any formal training under your belt.

firstrace

Nike trainers from JC Penney and trying to maintain the hoopster look by lengthening my shorts with spandex underneath

During the warm up I proceeded to run as slow as humanly possible because I thought in order to have strength to make it 2.5 miles I would need to conserve all that energy now. I also had made sure I ate an enormous breakfast of banana, eggs, cereal and a sausage biscuit because once again the more food I ate, the more energy I would have to run that far.

As the gun went off I nervously went out hard with the leaders, pushed even harder the middle mile, almost threw up the final 800 where my legs became jello-like and produced zero kick. It could have been the sausage biscuit or just my lack of fitness.  Thankfully I put some distance on the rest of the pack, so I managed to hold 7th place and run 15:40. I remember thinking mid-race as I was gasping for air, legs on fire, “this is probably the same pain of actually dying. Why I am I doing this to myself?!”

The sensation was quickly forgotten when they called me up for awards and realized I was likely hooked on running for life. I was so proud to get a medal. Only the really good athletes get these and now that means I must be good too! My 7 years of basketball commitment had never given me this much pride in working hard.  Later that night I just happened to have my medal to show off at the varsity football game.

2 comments

  1. This post is hilarious (esp the beginning)! Nice job Jules 🙂

  2. hahaha…this post is too awesome! my first race was also in 7th grade and my first practice the day before. totally thought warming up was cray-cray too! that picture is priceless!! 🙂 funny thing is tho…do any of us reeeealllly ever stop thinking at some point during a race, “yup…pretty sure dying would be less painful.” 😉 good luck at XC champs!

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