Cross Country doesn’t end because the seasons over…
Just over a week ago I ran my last high school cross country race. My first 3 years I ran varsity at Center Grove High School in Greenwood, Indiana. Just over a week ago I ran my last varsity race with Golden Senior High School in Golden, Colorado. Here are some things I’ve learned during Cross:
1.) The team is not a team. What I mean by this is cross country ISN’T a team sport. It’s a FAMILY sport. The teammates are actually your family and they support you after bad races, during hard times and push you to be the best you can be.
2.) Perseverance- it’s not about how many personal records you have or how fast you run. It’s about not giving up on yourself and to keep pushing even when things aren’t going your way.
3.) Level-Headed. Cross makes its participants level headed athletes in a way I’ve never seen any other sport do. Cross constantly tears down your ego and rebuilds it. One race you could run a minute personal record and the next race just not feel it and run 2 minutes slower. Cross teaches you to be humble because you never know how you will feel the next race.
4.) Competitive Drive- nobody wants to be last. Cross is you against yourself. This type of competitive drive is different from other sports because you stop looking at other players and their numbers and states but rather you look at your times, how you felt running those times and then figuring out how to beat yourself in the next race. Always striving to be better than you were yesterday.
5.) Acceptance- Yes… cross runners are weird in the eyes of others but that’s okay because only crazy people would be willing to go run for sport right? Cross runners are one of the most accepting kinds of people in a sense that we are all weird in our own way (considering we decided to go run for sport). That’s what makes us a family though. We are all accepting of each other and whether or not we have any common interests the one thing we do have in common is cross country and that will always be a connection.
6.) The cross community is the most supportive community I’ve ever seen. No matter your team, race, gender, age or skill everyone supports everyone. You can be running a race and have complete strangers cheering for you. And that is a true supportive community.