For The Love Of Cross Country
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Student Life

For The Love Of Cross Country

Running is difficult, but that makes loving it worth it.

For The Love Of Cross Country

The countdown has begun, and the high schools are getting ready to reopen for the 2016-2017 school year. In our house, my brother has already gotten his school schedule for his junior year at my now alma mater and I've found myself thinking about the fact that I won't be returning to high school next week. I was told by many people that I would find myself missing high school, but so far this is not the case. Truthfully, I am ecstatic at the thought of getting to start working towards my future, and look forwards to finding out what all college has to offer me. Through all my optimism for my future, there is one thing that I have found my mind falling on again and again that I won't be a part of this year.

From my sophomore year of high school until my senior year I dedicated the majority of my summers and autumns to running cross country. If you'd have told twelve year old me that one day I would be running because I loved it then I would've laughed in your face. Running was something I used to avoid like the plague, and hated being forced to run laps around the gym in P.E.. However, after hearing my cousin go on and on about how much he loved the sport of cross country I finally decided to give it a try. It's hard to say what exactly hooked me because there are so many aspects of the sport that I enjoyed. I loved the simplicity of it being just you, the trail, and the race to beat your last personal best time. I loved the people on the team and the feeling of family that we shared. I loved ending every practice and race with us attempting to form a circle then having a prayer and our final break down. I loved pushing myself to improve every time I put on my running shoes, and having a coach that could see your potential even when you could not. We have a joke in cross country that we love to hate to love running. We complain about a lot of things. We complain about hurting, getting up early for practices and races, being tired, and the intensity of our workouts. Running is hard. It's one of the hardest and most underappreciated sports that exists. When you first start running you learn that people outside of the sport don't appreciate all that gets put into it. And some days its hard to accept that the other sports at school will always over shadow the efforts of your team, but cross country is worth it. It's worth the sweat and pain. It's worth being up for 7 a.m. summer practices. It's worth running through rain and mud. And it's worth being under appreciated because if you love what you're doing then that's all that really matters.

I won't be missing atmosphere of high school, or the oppressive environment that surrounds you there; however, I will miss cross country immensely. I plan to find time between my college classes this fall to go out and watch my former teammates race, and get a chance to meet some of the newbies too. I hope that they all learn to enjoy the sport, and recognize it for the blessing that it is. Cross country isn't easy, but it sure is worth it.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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