Beating the heat

Constant cancellations and shortening of practices due to heat are keeping the cross country runners from practicing for their first meet.

Morgan Brader, Staff reporter

The cross country girls are expecting to attend the first meet of the season today at Quail Ridge for the Fleet Feet Kick-Off. The girls JV race times are at 4:15 p.m., then the varsity girls compete at 5:15 p.m.

The girls are willing to run hard to keep in shape and practice for their first meet. However, the extreme heat, pushing temperatures of 107 degrees, has led the coaches to cancel practices. These practices touch on speed work, long distance, and fitness and are crucial to the team’s preparedness for running in the heat for their meets.

Junior Kristy Eslinger, first year varsity cross country runner, has had previous experiences with running in the extreme heat.

“Even with all the heat, [the meet] probably won’t be cancelled. We’ve had them in the past,” said Eslinger. “Usually, they’ll just have to get modified. Today’s race is only two miles though.”

Eslinger, previously running a 13 minute and 34 second time trial for the meet in 90 degree weather, is hopeful she can come close in today’s meet and hopes to at least break 14 minutes.

With the chance of the meet still being scheduled as is, the cross country runners must prepare themselves days in advance.There is also an added possibility of a weaker performance from the varsity runners racing. Junior Emma Duckworth feels the heat will negatively impact the race times for the athletes.

“We haven’t been training because of the cancelled practices, so it’s probably going to show in the race,” said Duckworth.

While Duckworth and Eslinger don’t expect to do as well as they usually would, freshman Bailey Beeler, first year varsity cross country runner, thinks otherwise.

“I think we’ll do just as fine, even with the heat,” said Beeler. “Even though the practices have been shortened or cancelled, you can always just run at home if you really want to practice.”

The team’s next meet, called First Capital, is Friday at McNair Park. The varsity runners expect to start running in the late afternoon, at 4 p.m., if the heat is not too extreme.