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Struggling through track…

It’s not a secret that I am enjoy coaching cross country a lot more than track. I personally enjoy running longer distances, I can actually run with the kids on their training runs and the races are so exciting. I was also one of the crazy ones in high school that enjoyed cross country more than track which is probably another reason why I just like cross country more. This year things have been a little different with track and I have my own ‘group’, the one and two milers, which has really helped me feel like I have more ownership in the program and has allowed me a little bit more one on one time with my athletes.

Track season is long. Kids get antsy and I know it feels like we don’t race for a lonnnnnng time. They just have to keep showing up and practicing which can be boring and seem dull. Then all of a sudden we race twice a week and in two short months our season is over. It’s hard as a coach to what it seems like beg for them to come to practice and then when they run dismal times, see their disappointment without saying ‘told you so.’

We had our final invitational two weekends ago and to be honest were looking forward to the Frosh Sophs racing on Friday night, but didn’t even know what to expect from our Varsity team on Saturday. The Frosh Sophs did awesome and it was such a fun evening. They were so excited and did SO well. Saturday came around and the varsity team really impressed us. We were so excited to go into the last week of practice before league prelims and finals. Apparently our excitement didn’t wear off on the kids, and they struggled through another week of practice. We ended our season sending just a few kids onto CIF Prelims, and all of our athletes seemed to be okay with that. Where did the competitive drive go?

Alas, the coaching struggle. Keeping high schoolers motivated throughout a long season when they made the choice to do the sport. Here’s to trying new methods, learning more and growth for next season!

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  • Reply The Silent Assassin

    Wow. This brought back some HS track memories. I feel your pain. Now that I’m able to look back and remember the monotony of it all as the track athlete, I’m sure it’s hard to balance having fun, being serious, getting the work in and hoping it pays off when the gun fires. There were a couple of things that our coaches would do when we got into a rut…especially heading into championships. On the track we’d do relays and they’d give us the opportunity to run distances we don’t usually run. Worked well for the distance runners because all they wanted to do was run the sprints. But for us sprinters, they’d allow us to mess around with the discus or shot put =). Also, there were some occasions where we would do an easy track workout and then watch a film. It was usually running related. Sometimes we would watch prior meets we did… and sometimes we’d watch previous olympics or the world championships. It was always fun to just watch the elites compete. I know it’s a hard balance though. I’m sure it will all work out. Good luck!

    May 27, 2016 at 11:32 am
  • Reply Stephanie Richards

    Could you spice up training somehow to make it more fun and interesting? I was never in track but I could definitely see how it could get a little boring of training consisted of just doing the same thing again and again.

    July 3, 2016 at 10:55 am
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