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Xavier runners determined to be the best

HS journalism: Cross country teams looking for more success

Xaver senior John Pape runs on the track at the end of his race at the Prairie Invitational earlier this year. (Emiko Coffey/Xavier senior)
Xaver senior John Pape runs on the track at the end of his race at the Prairie Invitational earlier this year. (Emiko Coffey/Xavier senior)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Success can come in many forms, but it starts with determination and preparation.

This is no different for the girls’ and boys’ cross country teams at Xavier High School.

The runners’ determination to win is unbelievable. They want to be the best of the best. For the boys’ team, this means qualifying for state a second year in a row.

“We hope to get to the state meet and improve upon what we did last year,” junior Nolan Pithan said.

Preparing both mentally and physically for a race can determine the outcome. However, preparation for each race starts well before meet day. Runners start training for the season at the beginning of the summer. They do this by going for runs everyday, participating in other sports or preparing with their own training program.

This preparation must have focus and the determination to succeed behind it, as running goes beyond the physical aspect.

“Cross country is definitely more mental,” junior Jonathon Lansing said. “Nobody really has an advantage physically, so you have to stay focused on your goal.”

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Another way runners prepare for cross country meets is changing their eating habits. Changing what they eat can help them store more energy, which helps them run longer without getting tired. This is especially important on meet days,

“I eat a lot of carbs. A day or two before a meet, I usually eat a lot of pasta or pizza,” Lansing said.

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