ATH­LETES DO­ING GOOD

IT’S A GOOD DAY WHEN YOU CAN ADD AN­OTHER MEDAL TO YOUR COL­LEC­TION. IT’S A GREAT DAY WHEN YOU’VE FOUND A WAY TO SUP­PORT SOME­ONE ELSE. THE STO­RIES OF THESE YOUNG ATH­LETES IN­SPIRED US. WE HOPE IT WILL IN­SPIRE YOU ALSO.

Youth Runner Magazine - - INSTAGRAM FANPAGE - By Lauren Keat­ing Train­ing Prop­erly dur­ing coVid-19

MAYA MOR, OR­GA­NIZED A VIR­TUAL 5K TO RAISE MONEY FOR A LOCAL CHAR­ITY. SHE REACHED OUT TO OVER A HUN­DRED

HIGH SCHOOL COACHES AROUND THE STATE AND ASKED LOCAL BUSI­NESSES TO SPON­SOR THE EVENT. SHE ALSO REACHED OUT TO SEV­ERAL PRO­FES­SIONAL RUN­NERS (EMMA COBURN, REED FIS­CHER, WILL LEER - THE LAT­TER TWO ARE FROM MN) WHO GAVE SHOUTOUTS TO THE EVENT ON IN­STA­GRAM. HER INI­TIAL GOAL WAS TO RAISE $5000, AND SHE RAISED ALMOST $12,000. ELEVEN-YEAR-OLD MICHAELA NEAL OF WILM­ING­TON, DE, HAS BEEN US­ING HER STAY-AT-HOME TIME TO SEW FACE MASKS FOR PEO­PLE IN HER COM­MU­NITY THAT NEED THEM. WHILE MICHAELA EN­JOYS TRACK AND FIELD, SHE ALSO EN­JOYS BE­ING CRE­ATIVE AND HELP­ING HER COM­MU­NITY, AND WHEN THE NEED AROSE AGAIN TO DO BOTH, SHE WAS ALL IN. MICHAELA AL­READY HAD THE FAB­RIC AND A SEWING MA­CHINE IN HER BED­ROOM AND BE­GAN TO SEW FACE MASKS. IN ONE WEEK­END, SHE MADE AND DISTRIBUTE­D OVER 50 FACE MASKS.

GABBY GOODGAMES IS A RECORD HOLDER IN THE 60M HUR­DLES AND AN EN­TRE­PRE­NEUR. SHE WON FIRST PLACE IN LAST YEAR'S DIS­TRICT-WIDE SCI­ENCE FAIR FOR HER IDEA AND HAS SINCE CON­VERTED IT INTO A BUSI­NESS-PAWSOME PAM­PER KIT--A MONTHLY SUB­SCRIP­TION BOX COM­PANY FOR DOG-LOVERS. SHE HAS SHIPPED TO SEVEN STATES, HAS MONTHLY SUB­SCRIBERS, AND PART­NERS WITH A LOCAL BREEDER TO CRE­ATE NEW HOME CARE PACK­AGES FOR PUP­PIES GO­ING TO THEIR FOR­EVER FAM­I­LIES. ALSO, SHE GIVES PART OF HER PRO­CEEDS TO THE TRI-CITY AN­I­MAL SHEL­TER.

ALEX SAL­DANA, FROM PARAMUS, NEW JERSEY, IS A RUN­NER AND A BOY SCOUT. HE HAS BEEN PLAY­ING TAPS NIGHTLY AS A LOCAL VET­ERAN’S HOME FOR THE VET­ER­ANS WHO HAVE DIED RE­CENTLY DUE TO THE COVID-19. HE STANDS OUT­SIDE OF THE GUARDED GATES AND PLAYS, HOP­ING THAT SOME OF THE VET­ER­ANS

WILL HEAR.

CALEB CRAFT DIDN’T NEED A CRI­SIS TO START VOL­UN­TEER­ING. SINCE HE WAS SIX YEARS OLD, HE RE­QUESTED THAT FAM­ILY AND FRIENDS DO­NATE FUNDS AND WRITE LET­TERS TO THE VET­ERAN’S HOME NEAR HIS HOUSE IN­STEAD OF BUY­ING HIM GIFTS. EACH

YEAR AROUND HIS BIRTH­DAY, HE DE­LIV­ERS THE FUNDS AND LET­TERS TO THE VOL­UN­TEER CO­OR­DI­NA­TOR AND SPENDS TIME VIS­IT­ING WITH VET­ER­ANS.

THE START OF EACH TRACK SEA­SON BRINGS WITH IT A SENSE OF HOPE IN THE AIR, A NEW PR JUST A MEET AWAY. BUT THE OUT­DOOR SEA­SON KICKED OFF WITH A FALSE START. IT CAME TO A PRE­MA­TURE HALT, STOP­PING RUN­NERS IN THEIR TRACKS AF­TER THE SCHOOL CLO­SURES AS­SO­CI­ATED WITH COVID-19.

But young ath­letes need to re­mem­ber that while the sea­son is over, run­ning has no fin­ish line.

“I feel like run­ning is one of the bet­ter sports to be an ath­lete in right now,” Jesse Dimich-Lou­vet, a se­nior at the Billings Pub­lic School in Mon­tana, said.

While other ath­letes are not able to train the same dur­ing the pan­demic, run­ners can main­tain their dis­tance—while so­cial dis­tanc­ing— to con­tinue to work on their skill.

Orig­i­nally a ten­nis player, Dimich-Lou­vet said he is still fairly new to the sport. Plac­ing third in the men’s 5,000 me­ters 15-18 divi­sion in 15:45.85 at the USATF Na­tional Ju­nior Olympic Cross Coun­try Cham­pi­onships in De­cem­ber, he cur­rently aban­doned spring track work­outs as a se­nior to look ahead to the cross coun­try sea­son when he at­tends Tem­ple Univer­sity in Philadel­phia in the fall.

“I would love to have one more sea­son with my team­mates, and you feel like you worked hard all win­ter, DimichLou­vet, who said. “But I’m not one of those peo­ple who are like well it was all for noth­ing. Es­pe­cially in run­ning—you train and you don’t see the ef­fects for an­other year, some­times it’s two years.”

He hopes his hard work put in now pays off as he en­ters the col­le­giate level of the sport. His cur­rent train­ing in­cludes run­ning about 60 miles a week, do­ing Yoga, and tak­ing time to roll out the

threat of any po­ten­tial in­juries.

“I felt like I needed to pre­pare my­self for col­lege by putting in a lot of miles and do­ing things I wasn’t nec­es­sar­ily fo­cused on be­cause I haven’t been a run­ner all my life,” he said. “I would say it’s been more work, more time con­sum­ing, but I en­joy it a lit­tle bit more than the short, track ses­sions with a lot of speed work.”

High school sopho­more Am­ber Schulz at Tim­ber Creek High School in Or­lando, FL said she’s been a run­ner “her whole life,” but com­pet­i­tively since she was about 8-years-old.

The 1:23:25 OUC Or­lando Half Marathoner was also dis­ap­pointed with the can­ce­la­tion of the spring sea­son. But she changed both her out­look— and her work­outs.

“I turned my fo­cus to re­ally get as good as I can and as strong as I can in this time, and let my body re­cover from all the rac­ing that I had been do­ing from the past sea­son,” Schulz said. “And fo­cus­ing on get­ting a base and men­tally pre­pare. Let this be a re­fresher for the long ca­reer I want to have with run­ning.”

Typ­i­cally a low mileage run­ner, the 3000m first place win­ner with 10:41.49 at the 2019 USATF Florida As­so­ci­a­tion Ju­nior Olympic Cham­pi­onships, is adding more strength train­ing. “I’ve been able to up my miles with it feel­ing re­ally good.”

Many run­ning coaches agree that the best way to move for­ward with train­ing is to scale back on in­ten­sity and re­turn to that base phase to pre­vent in­jury and stay healthy.

“Since they are not train­ing for any­thing, there’s no sense in tax­ing the sys­tem,” Robert Gessler, MD, RRCA Cer­ti­fied Coach, and In­struc­tor and USATF Level III coach said. “The best type of train­ing is to not get over­trained and have the immune sys­tem do what it needs to do.”

Dur­ing the sea­son, the men­tal pres­sure of phys­i­cal de­mands of per­form­ing re­sults in high lev­els of stress. And with so much on the line, many ath­letes push through be­cause they don’t want to say no to a race. “Now’s the time to take the time,” Dimich-Lou­vet said.

Head coach at Reser­voir High School Cross Coun­try and Track and Field in Fulton, Mary­land, Gessler rec­om­mends ath­letes stick­ing to con­ver­sa­tional pace run­ning to not over­stress the body.

“We are in the pat­tern of start­ing buildup for the cross coun­try sea­son. What we can have for them is a longer buildup,” Gessler said. “And that doesn’t mean we won’t throw in some work­outs in here and there, but we will not have them overdo it. And then hope­fully they will come in the mid­dle of Au­gust to us in re­ally good shape.”

De­spite en­joy­ing track more for “the en­ergy, the mo­men­tum from the peo­ple around you,” Schulz is now also gear­ing up for cross coun­try once Na­tion­als was of­fi­cially can­celed. Af­ter a week to re­fresh the legs, her coach plans on in­creas­ing her mi­lage to build a cross coun­try base and con­tinue with strength train­ing. She is now run­ning 30 to 35 miles per week.

Dur­ing COVID-19, there is now the ben­e­fit of more time to train.

“For those that are dis­tance run­ners, they are look­ing at it has more of an ex­tended way of pre­par­ing for the cross coun­try sea­son in the fall,” said

Jim Hughes, the head coach of Moore Catholic’s and St. Clare’s track and field/ cross coun­try teams in Staten Is­land, NY.

He rec­om­mends find­ing a good area of

a park to run in and sim­ply en­joy it and re­dis­cover the fun and love for run­ning. Make some days eas­ier than oth­ers. Add hills—in­clud­ing down­hill work for fun— and trail run­ning. “Stay com­fort­able with the slower pace run­ning.”

run­ning SAFetY

Many “old school” coaches like Hughes nor­mally wouldn’t rec­om­mend head­phones and phones when run­ning. But Hughes thinks it’s a great way to keep the mo­ti­va­tion alive for those like the run­ners in New York who can’t run with part­ners.

Dimich-Lou­vet lis­tens to pod­casts or mu­sic now to keep en­ter­tained. He does go for a long week­end run with team­mates at so­cial dis­tance.

Run­ners are en­cour­aged to run 8 to 12feet apart. Sin­gle file run­ning also isn’t ideal dur­ing COVID-19. “I think it’s best for peo­ple to run side by side,” Gessler said. This is to avoid run­ning in the airspace of droplets that are breathed out from the other run­ner.

Dimich-Lou­vet re­vealed some of his team­mates wear masks, but he strug­gles with breath­ing too hard with one on. “But it’s im­por­tant to take into con­sid­er­a­tion,” he said. “Not only are we try­ing to stay healthy as an ath­lete, [but also] we ob­vi­ously want to stop the spread of the virus.”

There are no cur­rent man­dates to wear a mask, but Hughes rec­om­mends hav­ing one on be­low the mouth for eas­ier breath­ing that can be pulled up when pass­ing oth­ers.

go­ing Vir­tuAl

Coach­ing has gone vir­tual—and even for younger run­ners. These rookie run­ners are en­cour­aged to ex­er­cise as a way to burn off en­ergy and stress. It’s a sense of nor­malcy in their day for those re­turn­ing to the sport.

“We could just be a lit­tle thing that parents can do for their kids in a time that’s crazy that feels fa­mil­iar to them,” said Melissa Ray, a New Jersey com­mu­nity co­or­di­na­tor of the Healthy Kids Run­ning Se­ries pro­gram. “A lot of fam­i­lies a re­turn­ing fam­i­lies, so they know what race day feels like for them. And to give them a lit­tle bit of that in a time when ev­ery­thing is up on its head feels good.”

For kids ages 2-years-old to those in the 8th grade, the Healthy Kids Run­ning Se­ries is a five-week race pro­gram that is vir­tual this sea­son. “We hope to pro­vide that sense of mo­ti­va­tion for those kids who don’t have their other sports, not just track,” Ray said.

The Catholic Youth Or­ga­ni­za­tion (CYO) is hold­ing work­outs and lec­tures on Zoom twice a week that fo­cus on proper stretch­ing, drills, form, and core while shel­ter­ing in place. These 30 to 45-minute work­outs are avail­able for free for all CYO track pro­grams.

“We wanted to keep them ac­tive and en­gaged with their team­mates,” Moder­a­tor and CYONY Club coach Ste­fan Anikewich said. “Many of the kids can’t leave their houses or apart­ments dur­ing this cri­sis, so we thought let’s bring prac­tice to them.”

He said the kids are left smil­ing at the end of ev­ery work­out.

“We will keep these zoom train­ings go­ing un­til it is deemed safe to be to­gether in per­son, and we will keep them go­ing af­ter. Even though the kids are not train­ing to­gether in per­son, they have been part of lec­tures/train­ings from for­mer and cur­rent Divi­sion I ath­letes, coaches, mil­i­tary fam­i­lies dis­cussing not only work­outs but life ex­pe­ri­ences,” said CYO Di­rec­tor Seth Peloso. “They are vir­tu­ally shar­ing ex­pe­ri­ences, train­ing, learn­ing, lis­ten­ing and grow­ing to­gether.. If we (youth sports) are go­ing to come out of this pan­demic and have the same im­pact on these chil­dren’s lives, we will have to adapt and keep them en­gaged now.”

Parents should re­mem­ber to keep run­ning fun for younger ath­letes. The end goal is just to keep them mov­ing. “We want them to come back so that they de­velop a life­long love like we have for run­ning,” Gessler, a coach for the Howard County Ju­nior Strid­ers said.

no rAce PlAnned, no Prob­lem

While younger ath­letes are used to run­ning for fun, mid­dle and high school run­ners might be strug­gling to cope with COVID-19.

For Dimich-Lou­vet it meant miss­ing out on his vic­tory lap as a se­nior. “I feel more for the ju­niors,” he said. “I know that ju­nior year was a very cru­cial year in or­der to show­case your tal­ents.”

The 5000m se­cond-place finisher at the Novem­ber SATF Mon­tana As­so­ci­a­tion Ju­nior Olympic Cham­pi­onships said that he knows ju­niors that are strug­gling with mo­ti­va­tion in both aca­demics and train­ing. “The ju­niors think, ‘well what is there to train for?’ Races are get­ting can­celed left and right now. We don’t even know if we’ll have a fall sea­son,” he said. “My ad­vice is to stay train­ing at the in­ten­sity that you were in sea­son and not burn out. Stay fo­cused and don’t lose sight on the big­ger pic­ture.”

Hav­ing no planned races isn’t such a bad thing.

“Hon­estly, it has had a pos­i­tive im­pact on me be­cause I feel like I’ve got­ten to know where I want to go with run­ning even more be­cause I’ve had time to just get away from races and do other things,” Schulz said. “It’s made me re­al­ize that I re­ally do have a pas­sion for run­ning and rac­ing. It’s made me re­think ev­ery­thing and made me so thank­ful for run­ning and what I’m able to do when I do it.”

Re­mem­ber why we run.

“First and fore­most it should be to stay healthy,” Dimich-Lou­vet said. “It shouldn’t be for the ac­co­lades or the spot­light. It should be for the love of the sport.”

On­line learn­ing is new for many peo­ple around the world. But, just like a hard work­out or new sport, we need to learn to adapt and find ways to help us face the new chal­lenge. I am one of the many peo­ple who have had their school closed and are now start­ing to do on­line learn­ing. I am also one of many peo­ple who have dis­cov­ered how dif­fi­cult on­line learn­ing re­ally can be, since some­times fo­cus­ing can be tough with your fam­ily do­ing other things around you! Thank­fully, over the past cou­ple of weeks, I have found some ways that can help me fo­cus on school, get my work done, and be suc­cess­ful.

It doesn’t mean you have to get up su­per early, but it means you should not stay up too late and sleep in un­til noon. I find that go­ing to bed at my nor­mal school night time and wak­ing up by

9:00 am (at the lat­est) helps me get enough sleep and pre­pares me for my day. When I wake up, I get dressed, eat break­fast, and go through my rou­tine.

Look­ing over my as­sign­ments and mak­ing a to-do list helps me to or­ga­nize what I need to get done for the day. It also helps me bet­ter man­age my time and ask teach­ers any ques­tions I have about the class­work for the day.

My sched­ule looks a lit­tle like this: Wake up and get ready for the day. Com­plete work for 2-3 classes. Ex­er­cise and take a short break or do as­sign­ments for gym. Fin­ish work for one more class. Eat lunch. Com­plete the rest of the classes for the day, tak­ing a quick break half­way through if needed. Fi­nally, get the se­cond round of ex­er­cise in (this is where I nor­mally will do my run for the day,

When on­line learn­ing be­gan, I thought work­ing alone on projects would be best. But, I found that work­ing with one to two other peo­ple can be very help­ful! When start­ing a pro­ject, I email the per­son (or peo­ple) I want to work with and find a time that we can work on the pro­ject to­gether on­line. Through email, tex­ting, or facetime, you can then split the work and fin­ish the pro­ject. Trust me, work­ing with an­other per­son can cut the time it takes to do it in half, that’s a lot of time saved! Also, it is much more fun to be able to com­plete it to­gether.

Al­though it may seem hard and some­what scary to ask teach­ers ques­tions, it can be very help­ful when you are do­ing school­work at home. Know­ing how to do an as­sign­ment is im­por­tant, and ask­ing ques­tions is some­times the only way you will fig­ure out how to do it if you are un­sure. Many other stu­dents are ask­ing ques­tions as well, so you should not be afraid to ask for help. Search­ing for help on­line can also be use­ful if you are un­sure about how to do some­thing.

I learned that do­ing this is ex­tremely im­por­tant. My Be­lieve train­ing jour­nal keeps my run­ning and cross-train­ing or­ga­nized; how­ever, I do not add any­thing about my school­work in there. Take a mo­ment to plan out your day so that you don’t find your­self sit­ting and not know­ing what to do.

With this whole digital learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, it is quite likely that you will be on­line for most of your classes. From be­ing on your iPad or com­puter too long, you can have mood changes and get bad headaches. Try to look away from the screen ev­ery 20 or so min­utes to give your brain some rest.

Just don’t do it with a big group of peo­ple. Ex­er­cise and mov­ing your body is ex­tremely im­por­tant, but we will just be stuck in this sit­u­a­tion longer if so­cial dis­tanc­ing guide­lines aren’t be­ing fol­lowed. A run, walk, game of bas­ket­ball, or even fresh air is amaz­ing. You just have to be mind­ful of who’s around you.

For me, teach­ers at our school have been email­ing us daily, giv­ing in­vi­ta­tions to Google Hang­outs/Zoom meet­ings, and as­sign­ing home­work. To not get be­hind, it is very im­por­tant to keep up with the lessons given dur­ing class.

Yes, on­line learn­ing means you have school dur­ing the day, but you should do other ac­tiv­i­ties to give your mind a break. If you have al­ready ex­er­cised and done for the day, maybe you can bake a dessert. Spend time with fam­ily, try chalk art, start a new hobby, etc.

I hope this helps ev­ery­one with their re­mote learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence and makes it a bit more en­joy­able. Happy learn­ing!

At the 2019 AAU Ju­nior Olympics, Kayleigh broke the 200-me­ter hur­dles record twice. She broke it first in the pre­lims run­ning the event in 27 sec­onds flat. Then, the fol­low­ing day, Kayleigh broke the record again run­ning the 200-me­ter hur­dles in 26.84, be­com­ing the first 13-year-old girl ever to run 26 sec­onds! She also won sil­ver in the Pen­tathlon.

Com­pet­ing at the 2019 AAU Club Cham­pi­onships, Kayleigh won the gold in the 200-me­ter Hur­dles, the 13-yearold Pen­tathlon, and the Long Jump where she went over 17 feet. Ad­di­tion­ally, Kayleigh was the Georgia Mid­dle School State Cham­pion in the 300 Hur­dles, won the 2019 AAU in­door ti­tle in the 200m, and at New Bal­ance Out­door Cham­pi­onship in 2019, Kayleigh placed 3rd in the Long Jump.

Last year, Kayleigh trav­eled to Belize to study global warm­ing and be­came cer­ti­fied to Scuba dive while she was there. Kayleigh was also one of eleven girls se­lected by Chevro­let to go to Manch­ester, Eng­land as a “Goal­keeper” from the United States.

With all of this, Kayleigh still man­ages to be an honor roll stu­dent, plays soft­ball, bas­ket­ball, and par­tic­i­pates in dance. She is a busy girl!

Way to Go Kayleigh!

There is a full in­ter­view with Kayleigh at youthrun­ner.com.

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