Off Season Running begins Now!
The beginning for next year's cross country season is right now. What does that mean? If you have high goals for yourself then every day that you run, the farther you will move toward your goals, and the better your chances for success. I have known quite a few very good high school runners over the years, and they all had one thing in common. They had a high level of dedication, and a spirit that would not give up.
Some would say that it is to cold out, or that it is to dark to run. It's not to cold to ski, and it's not to dark to drive. Running has been described as the act of falling forward, and catching oneself, over and over. How difficult is it to run, if this statement is true? Yet, so many struggle to have consistency with their running program.
It all starts with a simple goal. One must say, "I will run, and I will try to run every day." Once you have accomplished one run, it will be easier to do a second. Once you have put together several days with running, you will find that it is easier to continue than it will be to stop. Dress for the weather. Begin by over dressing for the first few runs. Don't be worried about how much distance you cover. Keep track of your time, and average the estimated pace per mile to figure mileage. If you are moving slowly, figure about 9 minutes for a mile. If you are moving quicker figure closer to 8's.
Write your estimated distance down in a log or on a calender. Keep track after every run. Keep a running total and take pride in the fact that you are running more than 95% of the rest of the state's distance runners. I'm not sure why so many dislike running in the winter. I have found that it can be refreshing. Running on fresh snow can be fun. It can be cold, and dark. It can be a challenge. How tough will it be to run during the season if you know that you can run through the winter?
The payoff for off-season running? Well, I've seen more improvement from runners with what they've done out of season, then what they've been able to accomplish during the season. That can be pretty amazing when you think that running during the winter should be just easy distance running. Adding a bit more every week will lead to great distances by the time spring track rolls around.
Goal Setting Techniques
What is a goal and why is it such an important part of distance running. One of the best descriptions that I've heard when describing a goal is that it is a dream with a deadline. A goal is target. It is an accomplishment that a person would love to achieve. The reason why the setting of goals are so important, it that it gives us a target to reach for. It allows us to plan for what is necessary to reach the target. Sometimes goals can be reached by accident, but in most cases a goal is reached by advanced planning and superior preparation. Typically goals that are reached are usually celebrated. Once a goal is reached a new one should be set to keep the bar moving upward.
Goals are great tools to help motivate and individual or team. Reaching for the stars, aiming for the clouds, climbing to the top of the mountain. These are all sayings that are unitized when describing the action of reaching for a goal. The first step in using a goal to help with off season running is to begin small, and build from there. Make several goals. Some of these can be short term, while others can be long term. The short term goals could be as simple as setting a goal to run every day this week. Once the goal has been achieve it can be reset at the same level, or increased. An example of an increase would be to set a new goal for running every day of the month. Each time a goal is reached, confidence is enhanced. The sum of reaching several goals will lead to an increased belief in oneself that could lead to better performances.
A long term goal is one that is set for a period of time down the road. To reach a time by the end of the season. It could be a plan to win a high level race, or reach All State by the end of your high school career. It also could be a goal of qualifying for the State track meet in your favorite event. Earning a college scholarship could be considered a long term goal. Long term goals take a while to achieve and are usually achieve through a successful series of short term goals.
Start by setting a goal right now. Here's an example: I want to go out for a run today. If I run today, I achieve the goal. Pretty simple. Set up rewards for reaching tougher goals. If you fail to reach a set goal, you may need to look at why you failed and try to rework it for another attempt and see if you can succeed the next time. Sometimes it takes a lot of attempts to reach a worthy goal. If that's the case, then the feeling of accomplishment after reaching the level will be even better.
Track Season is just around the Corner!
Practice will begin on Monday, March 15th. That's not really that far away. It's time to start thinking about getting ready for the beginning of practice right now. This year will be a bit different since we do not have meets scheduled during the spring break. That should be helpful for us. Since the first meet is scheduled for April 10th, this will give us enough time to work our way into beginning shape prior to the first competition. That's nearly four weeks of practice prior to the first meet. Since a lot of you will be gone for spring break, it will be important for you to make plans now to run during your vacation. This should give you a great chance to fit in running, since you won't have school to worry about for the spring break week.
- April 10th - Columbia Falls Inv.
- April 13th - Flathead Time Trial
- April 17th - Missoula Inv.
- April 17th - Bigfork Inv.
- April 24th - Libby
- April 27th - Msla Top Ten
- May 1st - ARM Inv.
- May 4th - Ken Good Inv.
- May 8th - Archie Roe
- May 15th - ABC Polson
- May 21-22 - Divisionals - Libby
- May 28-29 - State - Laurel
Time to Plan New Distance Plan for the Upcoming Track Season!
Each year I'm amazed how many times I've heard comments from runners of how they don't really care for the track season, especially when comparing it to the cross country season. I remember back when I ran high school track, and how I really liked the track season. Mainly because of the differences from the XC season. Sure, the XC season was fun, and there was a lot of great things associated with it, but the track season offered many of the same great opportunities, and some that were not available during the XC season. For instance, during the track season you still have the opportunity to be with a lot of your friends during training and meets. The training plan is similar, with easy days being Mon., Wed, and Fri during the week, and hard days being on Tues. and Thurs. Races will be on Tues. and Sat. Track offered the chance to get really fast!!!!
I realize that not everyone runs the same race distances at ever meet. But, that may not be all that much of a bad thing. This will give everyone an opportunity to stand out. I'm looking at moving away from all of the double events during most of the meets. Some have mentioned that having to run two races at a lot of the meets is pretty tough mentally. I can see that. I still believe that a second event is a second chance to run well. I do agree that it is not a good thing to wait with a feeling of dread throughout an entire meet waiting for a second event.
There are other things we can try to help make track a bit more fun. This season, I'm really looking at pace work on the track. In the past, we've really worked on speed and strength work. It did help to get us where we wanted to be at the end of the season, but I still think that we could use a more friendly pace workout to help everyone learn how to run fast times in races. This will be a lot easier to handle both mentally and physically through the first half of the season. Then we will work on the speed and strength later in the season. This could go a long way to making track seem a little more fun.
Another way to help everyone with the season will be to have well planned, thought out goals for everyone on the distance team. I know that for boys, to go under five minutes for the 1600 is a huge deal. Let's see how many we can get to do that. The same goal for girls to go under six minutes is just as big. To qualify for state in the 1600 meters, Boys will need to run under 4:48, while girls will need to run under 5:38. How many can we get to do that?
The 3200 and 800 offer even more opportunities. It's a huge deal for a boy to run in the 10's for 3200 meters. (that could be a 10:59.9) amazingly enough, that really shouldn't be so tough for a runner that understands pacing. A race of 10:40 should get a runner to State this year. For girls to run under 13:00 is a huge deal. To go to State is should take a run under 12:30. To run under 10:00 for boys is huge, while a girl running under 12:00 is equally huge.
Proper goals, and then the training to help you reach them, is the key to having fun with race results. There is a chance for everyone to be successful, if everyone sets the right sequence of goals. I would like to spend time with each athlete in an effort to establish a plan that will help to achieve the most by the end of the season.
A successful and enjoyable track season should be the goal of every runner at WHS this spring. This will lead to huge opportunities for summer off season running which in turn will lead to big improvements for the upcoming cross season.
It's never to early to start Dreaming about Cross Country Season!
If I were one of the runners on the girls team, I would be thinking about the possibility of winning a State Team Championship this coming fall. What can you do, individually to help the team reach this goal? It takes more than five runners to achieve this. Think back to last season when we didn't have two of the top five from the year before to help us. It's not impossible to have something unforseen happen. A team with depth is a superior team. Who will make the jump to help this team. We need to think about our younger runners and bring them along for the ride. This year's 8th grader may be the difference between first and second place at next years state championship meet. What can we do to help them come out for cross country next year. Remember what it was like when you were a young runner just starting out. Start inviting them to join the team right now, if you want them to help you this fall.
If I were a runner on the boys team, I would be thinking about the chances for a first-ever state championship for boys cross country. I really believe that our boys team in 3 years time will be a state championship team. I think that our boys team should have a really good chance to win in 2 years. Will this team for next year challenge themselves to reach that level first? The challenge is always greatest for the first team to reach the top. Our girls struggled before they were able to win their first. It took dedication, depth, and luck for the girls team to reach their first championship. We've had several boys teams that have had the talent to win State, but luck has never been there to help us. This coming year, the boys need to make their own luck with dedication and off season work to achieve the biggest payday!
With the boys that we have returning from last season, plus the chances of getting new runners as freshman, our boys team has the talent to be one of the top 3 or 4 teams in the state next fall. This is with normal progression with the natural maturity of an extra year. With average off season running, a boy runner can expect to improve his time for a 3 mile race by roughly 40 seconds in the span of that one year. If we do that, and have the same runners, we stand to compete for a top 3 or 4 spot at state. However, if we were to have highly motivated individuals all working for that super goal of a championship team, it would take a bit more improvement. Maybe to that of a minute to a minute and twenty seconds improvement for a 3 mile race. That, I'm afraid is going to take a more dedicated approach. Let's start our approach with this track season.
Start planning for Running Camp!
Dates have been set for the 2010 Flathead Lake Distance Running Camp. The first session is planned for June 16-19, and the second is set for June 21-24. I think camp is a great place to have fun and to set goals for the summer. It's a good place to make new friends and to strengthen old friendships. It's a great place to learn new ideas, and to re-enforce the ideas that you already have about running. It's close to home, but with all the benefits of being far away. Plus, it's not that expensive when compared to other camps.
I would recommend that runners try to attend both camps if possible. At first, the camp was set up as a 4 day camp, but lately more teams have begun to attend both sessions, making it an 8 day camp (9 if you count the day between). Now that's a real running camp. 8-9 days of motivation. Holy Cow! There will be nothing that will get in the way of your plans then. If expense is a problem, let me know, and I'll find a way to put you to work to help pay off some of the expense. If you want to be there, we'll find a way to make it happen. Plan for it now, rather than later. Let your parents know when camp is, so they can plan other vacation plans around it. Let your summer work employers know when it is, so that you can work around the job, or start right after camp.
Go to the camp website for a form: www.fldrc.com
What do you know about your sport!
Is running a big deal? Who knows about track and cross country? I can name several publications that cover the sport in magazine form: Running Times, The Runner, Trail Running, Runner's World, Track and Field News, and The Harrier are all monthly magazines which cover the sport.
On line websites are numerous and have lot's of information and coverage of our sport. It starts with our own website at www.whitefishxc.com. See our history, read old results and make plans for the future. Go to www.montanacrosscountry.com for coverage from xc results from around the state for this past year, as well as from other years. Follow some of the links to find new sites. The biggest website on line for high school cross country and track is www.dyestat.com. It covers it all. It has a lot of articles and race coverage.
Another site that should be used by everyone on our team is the one at www.runningahead.com. It has a free training log. Plus our team has a training club on the site with a forum available. To join the Whitefish XC group you'll need to join the free membership and use the password "bulldogs" when asked for it to join the group. Let me know if you need help setting up your account and I will help you. Again, it doesn't cost anything and is a cool place to keep in touch with everyone.
Girls 800 Meters (since 1999)
G. Grass school record 2:19.29 1987
Lauren Kuennen, 12 2:21.0 Ken Good 2008
Tara Halpin, 12 2:21.60 State A 2000
Carly Schwickert, 9 2:25.3 NW A Div.2008
Stella Holt, 9 2:25.6 NW A Div.2008
Maria Hill, 2:27.4 2001
Anne Danczyk, 12 2:27.8 NW A Div.2007
Kat Tarr, 9 2:28.8 Top Ten 2003
Beth Donovan, 9 2:29.3 NW A Div.2006
Breanna Leggit, 9 2:29.8 NWA Div.2009
Kali Schmidt, 10 2:29.72 NW A Div.2005
Aaryn Manning, 2:29.96 NW A Div.2003
Cassie Marcial 2:30.78 ABC Inv. 2002
Natalie Kearns, 10 2:30.8 NW A Div.2007
Ingrid Segarra, 2:32.08 NW A Div.2004
Girls 1600 Meters (since 1999)
Lauren Kuennen, 12 s record 5:18.6 NW A Div2008
T. Thornberry 5:22.4 1993
Tara Halpin, 5:23.85 NW A Div.2000
Cassie Marcial 5:25.82 NW A Div.2000
Beth Donovan, 10 5:28.1 NW A Div.2007
Ingrid Segarra, 5:31.36 NW A Div.2004
Jessica Sagen, 10 5:33.8 NW A Div.2009
Stella Holt, 9 5:34.2 NW A Div.2008
Bailey Eaton, 10 5:35.1 State 2009
Carly Schwickert, 10 5:36.3 NW A Div.2009
Anne Danczyk, 12 5:36.7 NW A Div.2007
Clare Miller, 11 5:38.2 NW A Div.2007
Janna Rozar, 12 5:39.5 NW A Div.2007
Girls 3200 Meters (since 1999)
Lauren Kuennen, 12 s. record 11:39.3 Archie Roe 2008
Sarah Maloney 11:41.1 1987
Claire Anderson 12:01.81 State A 1999
Loni Hanson, 11 12:12.26 Top Ten 2009
Jackie Cassidy, 10 12:12.94 Top Ten 2009
Jessica Sagen, 10 12:16.8 NW A Div2009
Janna Rozar, 12 12:17.9 Archie Roe2007
Bailey Easton, 10 12:21.8 Archie Roe2009
Clare Miller, 12 12:24.5 NW A Div2008
Sara Thornquist 12:27.6 Top Ten 2000
Anne Danczyk, 10 12:49.7 NW A Div.2005
Stella Holt, 9 12:51.5 Msla Inv. 2008
Beth Donovan, 9 12:58.9 ARM Inv. 2006
Kelly Beiser, 10 13:11.6 NW A Div2007
Rose Heider, 13:14.80 NW A Div2000
Boys 800 Meters (since 1999)
Matt Helgath, 12 s. record 1:55.94 State A 2004
Drew Coco, 10 1:57.0 NW A Div.2009
Cody Martinson, 11 1:59.0 2002
Ian Mallams, 12 1:59.3 State A 2007
Nathan Steele, 2:01.6 2001
Cody Henning, 12 2:02.85 NW A Div.2004
Michael Samdahl, 12 2:04.7 NW A Div.2008
Boys 1600 Meters (since 1999)
Drew Coco, 11 s. record 4:22.8 NW A Div2008
Ian Mallams, 12 4:26.71 State A 2007
Eddie Heider, 12 4:28.0 NW A Div.2002
Matt Helgath, 10 4:34.9 NW A Div.2002
Erik Anderson, 11 4:53.8 NW A Div.2007
Brendan Halpin, 4:54.4 ARM Inv. 2002
Patrick McGunagle, 11 4:55.0 ARM Inv. 2008
Jacob Fern, 12 4:55.3. Sub 5 Event2007
Byron Bard, 11 4:57.5 Sub 5 Event2007
Michael Harrison, 11 4:58.8 Sub 5 Event2007
Will Peterman 4:59.1 ARM Inv. 2000
Dylan Rice, 11 4:59.7 Sub 5 Event2007
Boys 3200 Meters (since 1999)
Drew Coco, 11 s. record 9:39.8 Archie Roe2008
Eddie Heider, 12 9:53.5 Archie Roe2002
Ian Mallams, 12 10:09.0 State A 2007
Erik Anderson, 11 10:31.8 NW A Div.2007
Jacob Fern, 12 10:47.8 NW A Div.2007
Joe Luger, 10:50. ARM Inv. 2003
Patrick McGunagle, 11 10:54.8 Msla Inv. 2008
Brendan Halpin 11:01.4 Col Falls Inv.2002
Alex Guerri 11:08.1 Col Falls Inv.2002
. Thomas 11:08.4 Col Falls Inv.2002
Michael Harrison, 11 11:08.7 NW A Div.2007
Distance Runners Performance List - Track 2009
Drew Coco, 12 1:57.0 NWA Div
Patrick McGunagle, 12 2:09.9 NWA Div
Gage Vasquez, 9 2:14.9 NWA Div
Cole Havens 2:16.6 NWA Div
Nathan Knox, 10 2:26.7 ARM
Caleb Newby, 9 2:28.1 ARM
Erik Hanson, 11 2:28.7 ABC
Dietrich Perchy, 10 2:33.4 ABC
Will Holdhusen, 9 2:36.8 Ken Good
Matt Kennedy, 10 2:37.6 Libby Inv.
Tucker Chambers, 10 2:49.1 Kal A
Drew Coco, 12 4:30.0 Msla Inv.
Nathan Knox, 10 5:11.8 NWA Div
Gage Vasquez, 9 5:12.2 NWA Div
Patrick McGunagle, 12 5:19.5 ARM
Caleb Newby, 9 5:23.8 ARM
Will Holdhusen, 9 5:40.2 ABC
Dietrich Perchy, 10 5:51.8 ABC
Drew Coco, 12 9:56.36 Kal A
Nathan Knox, 10 11:44.9 ABC
Caleb Newby, 9 11:47.4 NWA Div
Will Holdhusen, 9 12:20.5 Archie Roe
Dietrich Perchy, 10 12:48.1 NWA Div
Stella Holt, 10 2:25.9 NWA Div
Carly Schwickert, 10 2:27.3 State
Breanna Leggitt, 9 2:29.8 NWA Div
Jessica Sagen, 10 2:34.2 ABC
Kelly Beiser, 12 2:38.6 NWA Div
Jackie Cassidy, 10 2:42.5 Msla Inv.
Loni Hanson, 11 2:45.9 Ken Good
Megan Shaver, 12 2:55.8 Libby Inv.
Emma Dawalaby, 10 3:06.2 Bigfork
Jessica Sagen, 10 5:33.8 NWA Div
Bailey Eaton, 10 5:35.1 State
Carly Schwickert, 10 5:36.3 NWA Div
Stella Holt, 10 5:41.2 NWA Div
Jackie Cassidy, 10 5:46.0 ARM
Loni Hanson, 11 5:50.5 Libby Inv
Kelly Beiser, 12 5:56.6 ABC
Breanna Leggitt, 9 6:04.9 ABC
Megan Shaver, 12 6:19.9 ABC
Loni Hanson, 11 12:12.26 Top Ten
Jackie Cassidy, 10 12:12.94 Top Ten
Jessica Sagen, 10 12:16.8 NWA Div
Bailey Eaton, 10 12:21.8 Archie Roe
Stella Holt, 10 13:31.4 Ken Good
Megan Shaver, 12 13:50.9 Archie Roe
Breanna Leggitt, 9 14:09.3 Ken Good
WHS XC Coaches: