Off-season training keeps athletes fit

Jordan McEntee, Sports Editor

Their alarm clocks ring at 5:15 a.m.
They could hit the snooze button a few times.
But they don’t.
Juniors Xavier Adams and Colton Donohue wake up early every morning to run together. Adams and Donohue are training for the upcoming track season.
“After our freshman year, we were one spot off from making State for our relay team,” he said. “We don’t want that to happen again, so doing this is going to make us the best that we can be.”
Adams said he and Donohue have run together for years but just recently became training partners.
“We ran together a little in middle school,” Adams said. “But we really started training together in high school. It’s kind of like our lives now.”
Seniors Mackenzie Gorthy and Miranda Loats also train by participating in indoor track meets to stay in shape for high school track season.
“We’ll do running, bleachers, weights and abs for training,” Loats said. “We train outside, then we have meets inside.”
Loats said she hopes the extra off-season training will prepare the team for a successful track season.
“Last season at State, we didn’t perform as well as we wanted to,” she said. “Last year, I fell just short of a medal for the open 800. I’d really like to medal in that at State and for our team to medal in the 4×800-meter relay. We’re all working hard to get where we want to be.”
The runners’ determination goes beyond simply seeking recognition.
“Our coach knows that we do all the extra running,” Adams said. “But even if she didn’t know, we would still do it anyway. Knowing that no one is training as hard as us — that makes me want to do more.”
Loats said it has been important to keep an optimistic attitude.
“It’s hard when people ask you, ‘Why are you running?’” she said. “It’s hard to explain. But you have to make it positive. Running is such a mental sport, so you have to stay positive.”
Loats said she has held herself accountable and worked hard for four years to accomplish a big task.
“My goal since I was a freshman was to break the school record for the 800,” she said. “The record’s, like, a million years old. It’d be cool to break, but we’ll see.”
The current record for the 800-meter is 2:18, and Loats timed in at 2:26 at State last year.
Donohue is hoping to win State in the mile, and both Donohue and Adams would like to qualify in the open 800-meter and the 4×800-meter relay.
“We’re excited to do this because we want to win State,” Adams said. “Waking up at 5:30 sometimes isn’t as fun as you might think. It’s cold. But we’re out there every morning no matter what.”
Loats said running is a difficult sport but is very rewarding.
“When it’s snowy and cold, it’s hard to get motivated,” she said. “You’re like, ‘Wow, this is not fun.’ But you have to remind yourself why you’re out there. We all have bad days, but the good days make it worth it.”