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Running is evolving. From Boston to the Canary Islands. From the science lab to the city streets. Running is getting more social. More interesting. And more unpredictable. It’s evolving fast. And New Balance is pushing the pace. THIS IS RUNNOVATION.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .and the country. . . 41 SPIKE REVIEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 BUILDING A TEAM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .COVER PHOTO: West Springfield’s CAROLINA ALCORTA looks to be one of the top high school cross country runners in the Washington area -. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 PREVIEW. 54 CELEBRATE RUNNING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 CROSS COUNTRY FOR ALL AGES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . 6 OFF THE BEATEN PATH . 38 RUN AND HAVE FUN . . . . 8 MILITARY RUNNING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 SCHOLARSHIPS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 RACE SCHEDULE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 FOOTLOCKER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 POSTAL MEET . . . . . 48 COLLEGE RUNNING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY JIM DALY LOCAL CLUB HONORS THE FASTEST AND THE BRIGHTEST LETTERS / CONTRIBUTORS . . . . . . . 14 STATE MEET CHANGES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 Rising frosh weighs pros and cons of running collegiately 4 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Azer CReAtiVe / PRodUCtioN AZER CREATIVE www. Alexandria. Read about how adults are refusing to give up their spikes (page 48). insights and stories with me. but remember that the bulk of the time you’re spending running should be enjoyed (page 41). in whole or in part. advertiser. My family headed over to see her finish a triathlon and as we entered Genessee Park. LLC. RUNWASHINGTON Photo bY steVe tAYloR I was visiting my godmother in Seattle one August during college. I hope they can add to our region’s proud history at the Footlocker Cross Country Championships (page 54) and no matter how they perform. Sometimes you break through. or other materials are welcome but are not returnable and are preferred via electronic communication to charlie@ runwashington. have done a great job with a clean new layout for the magazine. build strong. Permit 397. Back issues are available for $5. Times mean less than the effort it takes to gut out a halfsecond lead over the guy next to you as you’re about to collapse. VA 22304. Copies are mailed to subscribers and area businesses and events. without the written permission of the 703-855-8145 CUstomeR seRViCe office@runwashington. or sponsors. Please inform yourself of applicable copyright and privacy laws before submitting for publication. It’s good to be nervous on the line when your team is counting on you. I took a crash course in local high school cross country. It’s primal. results.AUGUST | SEPTEMBER | OCTOBER 2013 PUblisheR Kathy Dalby RunWashington LLC editoR iN Chief Charlie Ban charlie@runwashington. supportive teams (page 35). Even though I spend most of my year training to race on the roads. Unsolicited manuscripts. paid at Frederick. MD. that Labor Day weekend college alumni race is enough for me to keep a pair of spikes around.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 5 . Be advised that running is a strenuous sport and you should seek the guidance of a medical professional before beginning an exercise regimen. Presorted Standard Postage. there are plenty of cross country races out there. If you’re out of school aching to hit the fields. RunWashington is published five times yearly by RunWashington. because that’s why we do this. But no matter what. Our new designers.azercreative. There’s nothing quite like it. and some new contributors have done a great job telling some of our community’s great stories. Views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the publisher. You get a whole summer to prepare with your team with a lofty goal. along with many more runners. Cross country was coming. 4544 Eisenhower seNioR editoR Dickson Mercer dickson@runwashington. remember to have fun. if we decide to publish your submitted material we conduct no such checks and you alone will ultimately be responsible for any violations of any laws including infringement and sAles diReCtoR Denise Farley denise@runwashington.00 for each copy to cover postage and handling. VA 22304. and may not be reproduced in any manner. bRANdiNg ORANGEHAT LLC The entire contents of RunWashington are copyright ©2013 by RunWashington. All rights reserved. Postmaster: Send address changes to RunWashington 4544 Eisenhower Avenue. the smell hit me — mud and grass. I’m excited to see what seasons our harriers make for themselves. Charlie /runwashington @runwashington AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. a cool respite from the Virginia and Pittsburgh summers. See you out coaches and parents who shared countless tips. sometimes it breaks you. I hope you love it. photographs. thanks to the coaches advisory board that helped compile our preseason AllRunWashington teams (page 14).

Andrew! By now. they should be. When she is taking time off from her extracurricular activities she can be found working as a Chemical Engineer for the U. Race reports are available online at runwashington. and his three daughters universities. after a few hiccups and redesigns. at the ripe age of 13. mountain biking and a smattering of other sports. cycling. Lynn. Samantha and Hannah.C. we hope to have our new website working. He photographs at many Northern Virginia cross country and track meets. He ran his first marathon in 2005 and is a perennial Boston qualifier. He also has shot for couples. dUstIN ReNwIcK (State Meet Changes) races for the National Capital YTri team after running collegiate track at St. — Charlie Rachel BecKmaNN (Military Running) retired from her first love. and everyone else. I refer anyone who asks to your race calendar when searching for local races. davId PIttmaN (The Postal Meet) is a health and medical writer who has covered running for ESPN Rise and Running Times. matthew lehNeR (Celebrate Running) works on the hill and as a freelance photographer in Washington. 6 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. Thank you. While at Saint Louis University. he served as an editor and a photojournalist for the University News. KeN tRomBatoRe (Forever Young) photographs dozens of races for the Montgomery County Road Runners Club. for bearing with us while we prepare them.S Coast Guard in Washington. plus other sports while a student at the University of Georgia. D. gymnastics. As for the rankings. D. A Washington resident. She went on to obsess over running. Ambrose University and earning a masters in journalism from the University of Missouri. Keep up the good work! Best. that allows us to get the news of the races up faster and reserve print space for stories that are less time sensitive. It is great to get news of past races and also have an excellent resource for upcoming races. who are all involved in the CYA track program. JacqUelINe KlImas (To Run in College?) was forced to run the hurdles during high school track. triathlon. ed lUll (Various photographs) was a quick mid-distance runner at Lake Braddock and the College of William and Mary. editorial and engagement photography. love letters and hate mail to charlie@runwashington. Thank you.Bring back race reports and runners’ rankings. Andrew Simpson Reston. he serves on the board for the Washington Running Club. He focuses on landscape.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . They’re posted shortly after the race is over (and the writer has a chance to put it together). Cathy Ross Burke. Va. which will be an improvement over our antiquated setup. She lives in Arlington and writes for Navy Times. feedback. I just wanted to say that I really appreciate your website. having recently earned a masters in journalism from Northwestern University. up and running on our new website and exceeding your expectations. He restarted the Chantilly Youth Association track program 9 years ago after a two-year period of dormancy and lives in Fairfax with his wife of 23 years. associations and members of Congress. His photography has appeared in newspapers and international magazines. more often than not placing in his age group. His work was awarded and recognized twice by the Missouri College Media Association. Now she is free to run whatever distance she chooses. Cathy. — Charlie send letters to the editor. if all goes as planned. rowing.C. It should make the calendar even easier to use and we will finally be able to replace some obsolete graphics (including having our new name at the top).

WALK for more info.332. run? AI D SWA L K WA SHI NGTON. ORG benefiting & produced by Register to run: . Call 202. OCTOBER 26 A fundraising 5K timed RUN.Why will SATURDAY.


” Charle Setash of Centreville runs for SYA and particularly enjoys running in Walney Park. “The trails are in great shape and the kids love it. is that even though the park seems so big.” he said.” said Mike McLenigan.” What’s important to him. Yet here we are. It’s a prime. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY CHARLIE BAN AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUNWASHINGTON. in Ellanor Lawrence Park. Bicycles are forbidden in the park.” he said. “They can get a little rowdy and throw walnuts at each other. when he is looking after his athletes. “The variety is great. Crossing a pair of bridges. There you’ll find a bathroom at times and parking spaces right next to the trail. the trail transitions to steep hills. Back into the woods from whence you came and an eventual right turn on the Historic Trail puts you on deceptively-tough climb before the trail spits you out next to the visitors’ center. which offers a variety of sports for children in Centreville and Clifton. largely woodchipped set of trails where you can forget all about the road on the other side of the tree line. Following the Walney Road Trail brings you to the winding Wild Turkey Trail.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 9 . flat stuff around the lake or strides on the grass. The park rather cleanly divides into three sections. “It’s almost entirely shaded and you can do hill training. The Southwestern Youth Association. a chipped trail parallels Cabels Mill Road. but that’s all you’ll have to worry about. “I love running around the lake. You’ll hit some pedestrians here. and it’s not too far to reach them. who. Coming back down the hill and across another foot bridge. farther north. it has clear boundaries in the surrounding roads. I typically start my three-mile loop from the Walney Park Visitor’s Center on Walney Road.” — Thank you to Alice Putman for recommending this run years ago. you reach Walney Pond. Across Walney Road. Centreville’s KEITH FREEBURN runs through Walney Park on a June day that made him thankful for shade. including a dramatic sweeping slope along a hillside. so runners are the fastest moving people on the trails.BY CHARLIE BAN ELLANOR LAWRENCE PARK · CENTREVILLE VA Y ou wouldn’t think you could find peace so close to I-66 and routes 28 and 29 in Centreville. “I can run � laps for a while there. Plenty of quick turns keep this relatively flat portion challenging. but not for long. uses Walney Park for cross country practices. coaches the SYA cross country runners. along with Craig Edmonds.

Saint Paul Island. my medication. well. and I get giddy when I’m close to a recreation center that I haven’t tried. Dulles International Airport. Barrow. going to a training school. This eclectic list of destinations describes some of the locations to which I have traveled for the Coast Guard. time changes. then for 50 cents take shuttle to the Air and Space museum. Getting a cab back to Dulles is never a problem.3 miles away. Phoenix Islands. weight machines. Oregon.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . stretch cords.By RACHEL BECKMANN S eattle..” and I have reaped many positive life experiences from my travels. Tonga. and at least 30 of the lower 48 states.5 miles of trails in Cub Run Valley park. Kodiak. while attending a conference for my current job. Cub Run RECenter (4630 Stonecroft Blvd. my peace of mind. my meditation.S International airports. endless layovers. RoNalD RegaN INteRNatIoNal aIRpoRt (DCa) DCA and I are close friends. four miles. DCA earns a 4. American Samoa. DUlles INteRNatIoNal aIRpoRt (IaD) The idea of sitting in foul-smelling clothes and offending the olfactory sense of not only yourself but those around you is a strong deterrent to working out while traveling. I confronted this precious time thief called travel and said “no sir!” You will not take away my workouts. Tahiti. like many U.5 out of 5 star rating for being a workout-friendly airport. You can also pay $8 to use the RECenter for the day. a change of clothes. Free weights. I see flight delays as travel trying to repay me with a few hours to explore an interesting area and to make up for the hours that were stolen from me in the past. stiff joints. Luckily. adjacent to the RECenter. Long flights. Marshall Islands. and a plan for expected and unexpected layovers. Uncle Sam might have a unique reason why you will once again be packing a bag and leaving home. I bike to work on the Mount Vernon trail nearly every day. swollen feet. hours (sometimes days) completely lost to travel. If you want to extend the run there are 2. Dutch Harbor. The gym is immaculate and has everything you could ever want or need. The Fairfax County Recreation centers are a workout fiend’s Disneyland. I found a workaround. You can take Mount Vernon South to the Four Mile Run trail. but everything good in life requires some sort of struggle. If you stay on the Four Mile Run trail for about. As a proudly self-diagnosed endurance sports addict. Brazil. Juneau. The military has definitely enabled me to “See the World. Western Samoa. Mumbai. deploying. Travel is a staple of life in the military. Now I travel with my running shoes. doing temporary work at an alternative duty station. The RECenter is only 2. cardio equipment. You might be changing duty stations. and the close proximity to the airport ensures an inexpensive ride. or. you 10 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON.C. There are a few corporate gym options that offer hefty one-day drop-in fees to use their facilities. You can store your bags at the USO across from baggage claim 11 & 12. physio balls. The Mount Vernon trail is right at the airport’s doorstep. but I prefer to support the Parks and Recreation departments. Chantilly) deserves these accolades and more. space for core work…They have two enormous pools and there are enough lap lanes to handle large crowds. does not have any shower facilities. Sweden. Washington D. flight delays. With a little research and reconnaissance I have armed myself with the tools to make the most out of any travel debacle. Guam. Panama.

The next time you are stuck in airport purgatory.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 11 . or you can run to the city by following the Mount Vernon trail north and crossing at 14th Street Bridge. My yellow brick road into the Coast Guard began at PHL when I was 18 and on my way to boot camp in Cape May. They offer day admission for $16.00. or Key Bridge. It was a nice feeling to hold onto as I began my. N. safe and comfortable route. at the time. Many of the gyms in D. open a map and I dare you to resist the urge to explore and find out what n might just be possible. a facility run by Arlington Parks and Recreation. Thanks to the Bob Hope Hollywood USO it was a stress-free and absolutely satisfying experience that I have since repeated every time I find myself in L. In an attempt to reconnect my brain to my body and avoid turning into a slightly comatose lump on a chair for six hours. terrifying journey into the military. require memberships for access. The USO at LAX is located between terminals 1 and 2.A.will arrive at the Barcroft Community Center. Less than 24 hours later I had to travel to Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands for a month long temporary duty assignment on the Coast Guard Cutter Sequoia. clean locker rooms and showers. In addition. Then I head back to the USO for a warm shower and five-star USO dining. You can store your luggage for free and then head out on a run. haPPy tRaiNiNg! AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. They have free luggage storage. They have never misled me on a run and always give me the safest and most scenic route. and I remember being moved by the kindness of the volunteers. They have laundry and shower facilities and the most comfortable chairs imaginable.4-mile run from the airport and. cardio equipment. It has weight machines. I had just returned from racing a triathlon for the Armed Forces in Mumbai. it is free! You can metro into the city if your mind is set on running in a specific location. making travel back to the airport convenient and cheap. PhiladelPhia iNteRNatioNal aiRPoRt (Phl) PHL is a major hub for military travel and holds a soft spot in my heart. Travel no longer holds a negative connotation in my mind. After sweating it out in the city of brotherly love you can shower and refuel at the USO before continuing on your travels. the route to Barcroft is almost entirely on multi-use biking and walking trails. I enjoy running out to Del Rey Lagoon Park and then following the multi-use paths up and down the beaches of southern California. The area closest to the airport is not the most settling visually and I would be hard-pressed to attempt a run at night. It is a 4.J. best of all. The USO is located by gate A-6 and is open 24 hours.C. A second great option you can access as a military member is the fitness center at Fort Myer. the frustration is fuel for my athletic passions. Instead. It is close to the Foggy Bottom Metro stop. and volunteers ready to meet your every need. Memorial Bridge. It was also my first introduction to USO lounges. With good directions from USO volunteers and a map in hand the city is yours to explore. which makes it an easy. but Balance Gym at the Fairmont Hotel offers a $20 day pass. shower facilities. los aNgeles iNteRNatioNal aiRPoRt (laX) My first LAX workout was inspired by jet lag and delirium. I decided to venture into the California sunshine.


crawlincrabhalf. 2013 Presented by Hampton. October 6 6:30am .www. Bakers Crust Kickin’ Corn and Crab Chowder • Finisher Medals for all participants • Entertainment • Finisher items for all half marathon participants Friday.7pm Expo & Packet Pickup at Hampton Roads Convention Center Expo & Packet Pickup at Hampton Roads Convention Center Saturday. Scenic Course 2-Day Sports and Fitness Expo Technical Shirts Post- Race party with Coors Light.8am Packet Pickup at Hampton Roads Convention Center 7:30am Kids Kilometer (1k run) 8am Coors Light Half Marathon Start 8:15am 5k Start 9am . October 5 10am .1pm J&A Post Race Party Sign Up Now . October 4 2pm .October 6. VA • • • • Sponsors: .6pm Sunday.

Questions abound as plots from last season remain hanging: Who is going to make the big jump to the head of the pack? Who’ll peak in November? Will last year’s underclassmen continue on their trajectories? Which freshmen will make a splash? Where will Maryland hold its state meet this year? (see page 19) RunWashington convened a meeting of eight coaches to point of who is poised for a big cross country season.C. “D. A selection of their answers: “There’s so much parity. area. but it’s not too hard to go somewhere else and find a quality race. We have great races here. Dunbar high School. area so special. congratulations.” — ChRiS pellegRiNi. because that atmosphere is what the city kids like.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 .B y the time this reaches you. Maryland and The participating coaches represented a cross section of schools in the area and. It’s going to be interesting to see how we can bring some of the excitement.C. take care of your body. The best of the best around here. “There are opportunities to find great races all over the east coast and it all centers around Washington. treat your opponents with respect but don’t give them a blade of grass. -Charlie Ban 14 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. These coaches also provided insight into what makes running in the D. and that comes out of a very passionate and knowledgeable crop of coaches and parents who love running. they selected the top 10 runners in the Washington. music. most high school runners will be well into their pre-seasons and getting ready for the first cross country meet of the fall. is focused on indoor and outdoor track. the ones we’d send to a battle royale-style race against other metropolitan areas. D. They also selected top sevens remaining in each state. Walt Whitman high School. For those of you who made the list.Virginia. For those of you who wish you did.C. EMILY KAPLAN — GEORGETOWN VISITATION PREP RUNWAShiNgTON PHOTO COURTESY OF KAPLAN RunWashington’s coaches advisory panel will follow the runners throughout the season and update the list of runners to watch. the hype. which you can follow at runwashington. Md. to cross country.C. Va. D.” — MARViN pARkeR. you know how to get there — train smart.” — STepheN hAyS. West Springfield high School. D.C. by consensus.

C D. Md.C D. Va. Virginia D. Va. D.CaRoliNe BeaKes — BethesDa-CheVy Chase RUNWASHinGton photo CoURtesy oF BeaKes CoaChes paNel Mike Mangan Chris Pellegrini Peter Sherry Scott Silverstein Stephen Hays Marvin Parker John Ausema Kevin Hughes Lake Braddock West Potomac Herndon Winston Churchill Walt Whitman Dunbar Gonzaga Prep Georgetown Visitation Va. Md. alBaNs RUNWASHinGton photo By eD lUll AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. Virginia Maryland state Virginia Maryland Virginia D. Albans George C.C.C Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Maryland D. Marshall Gonzaga oakton Poolesville sChool West Springfield Bethesda-Chevy Chase Lake Braddock Georgetown Visitation oakton Robert E.C.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 1 5 .C loUis ColsoN — eDisoN (right) RUNWASHinGton photo By eD lUll tai DiNGeR — st.C all RUNWASHinGton team Boys Matthew Calem nickolas Causey Louis Colson Alex Corbett Collin Crilly tai Dinger MacKenzie Haight Chris Hoyle Jack Stoney Chase Weaverling GiRls Caroline Alcorta Caroline Beakes Hannah Christen Emily Kaplan Allie Klimkiewicz Bailey Kolonich Katie Roche Macey Schweikert Lucy Srour Megan Wilson sChool James Madison osbourn Park thomas Edison Lake Braddock Good Counsel St. Lee Lake Braddock Robinson Churchill Sidwell Friends state Virginia Virginia Virginia Virginia Maryland D.

Lee T.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . Albans Gonzaga Georgetown Day School Gonzaga Theodore Roosevelt St.C. Williams Herndon Stone Bridge Chantilly Robinson Robinson sCHooL Washington-Lee Robinson Oakton Westfield West Potomac West Springfield Lake Braddock sCHooL Gaithersburg Good Counsel Churchill Bethesda-Chevy Chase Bethesda-Chevy Chase Whitman Northwest sCHooL Richard Montgomery Bethesda-Chevy Chase Bullis Richard Montgomery Good Counsel Bethesda-Chevy Chase Clarksburg LUCy sRoUR — CHURCHiLL RUNWASHINGTON PHoTo By ED LULL HANNAH CHRisTEN — LAKE BRADDoCK RUNWASHINGTON PHoTo By ED LULL 16 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. John’s sCHooL National Cathedral School Georgetown Day School Georgetown Visitation Dunbar National Cathedral School Georgetown Visitation Georgetown Day School NiCKoLAs CAUsEy — osBoURN PARK RUNWASHINGTON PHoTo By ED LULL ALL MARyLAND TEAM Boys Danniel Belay Colin Crilly David Fitzgerald Peter Horton Alex Riishojgaard Evan Woods Diego Zarate GiRLs Sophie El Masry Abby Fry Mia Gyau Grace Hanger Taylor Kozam Nora McUmber Lucie Noall ALL ViRGiNiA TEAM Boys Biruk Amare Anteneh Girma Andrew Goldman Brady Guertin Ryan McGorty Luke Sharkey John Tolbert GiRLs Sarah Angell Lauren Berman Hailey Dougherty Sara Freix Katie Genuario Katie Kennedy Katy Kunc sCHooL Robert E.C.ALL D. TEAM Boys Griffin Colaizzi Joey Gaines Michael Jarosz Aiden Pillard Kevin Pulliam Abdur-Rahmaan Tommy Reese GiRLs Erin Bell Julia Ernest Jessie Foster London Freeland Rosalie Hunter Margaret Lindsay Katherine Treanor sCHooL Georgetown Day School St.

Sunday September 29, 2013
Rockville, MD

A run and walk for everyone.

10K, 5K, Fun Run


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Interested in running your first 10K?

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Sixth Annual 8K Charity Race to Support the Equal Footing Foundation

Help End Homelessness In NoVA

Saturday, October 5, 2013 at 8:00 a.m. West Potomac Park, Washington, D.C.
The Run! Geek! Run! 8K starts and finishes in West Potomac Park in Washington, D.C. This is a flat, fast course and all proceeds go to support the Equal Footing Foundation, a Virginia-based nonprofit focused on youth development and education. • Fast, scenic race course along the Potomac River • Bobbleheads and prizes for top overall finishers and age category winners • Trophies for the fastest Corporate teams • Geek glasses and Run! Geek! Run! shirts for all participants! Register today! Registration cost is $30 until September 1, 2013. From September 2 to October 4, 2013 the fee will be $35. For more information about the race or becoming a sponsor, email us at or call (703) 218-3555.



NOVEMBER 30, 2013

Picnic Shelter A 7315 Ox Road • Fairfax Station • Virginia 22039

Register at:
Click on the “Featured Races” tab or call 703.829.5316 $30 to pre-register. $15 For Kids One-Mile Fun Run. Donations appreciated.

All proceeds go to a housing fund to help distressed Northern Virginia citizens receive counseling & support services. | 703.372.5440

Visit for more details


round the region, high school athletes log sweaty summer miles in preparation for the 2013 crosscountry season. Pavement, trails and maybe a track or two keep these runners in shape for a fall that will hold several changes, all of which affect the postseason. Washington, D.C., has a date for a real state championship. Statequalifiers in Maryland will test a new course. Realignment kicks in for Virginia high schools. For the most part, regular seasons remain intact, but that means these shifts are all the more important because runners will test them at a time when the biggest trophies and the brightest glories are in reach.

By Dustin RenwiCk

DC finDs a Date
College coaches looking for top recruits have an easy starting point in the state meet results. A champion doesn’t guarantee success, but a state meet title provides a glimpse of talent. Washington, D.C., hasn’t been able to provide a definitive champion in the past because the city doesn’t host an official state meet. The mayor’s office created the District of Columbia State Athletic Association in 2012 with the idea that sports should have parity and athletes should play by the same standards in the postseason. This year, the DCSAA will host a meet on November 2, a date between the championship races for the public and private schools in D.C. “We want to have a state championship at the end of the year like every other state does,” said Kenny Owens, DCSAA statewide special events coordinator of athletics. “With this type of structure, we’re able to give kids more exposure rather than the regular league championships.” The organization hosted its first state meet last year at Fort Dupont Park, but the date coincided with the Maryland and Washington, D.C., Private School Cross-Country Championships. Teams were forced to choose between races, an untenable position for any event claiming to hold a definitive state title contest. Only a dozen schools attended. Owens noted that one goal of the combined meet is to allow athletes to showcase their skills and give them a higher profile for college recruiters. “You might be the best in your league, but there’s another league or school across the city that has great athletes, too. It brings up the level of competition.” Right now, strictly comparing times between the events for the D.C. Interscholastic Athletic Association and the private school championships remains almost impossible.


public schools cross country runners can look forward to a bigger state meet.C. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY JIMMY DALY 20 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASH INGTON.D.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . These runners are members of the Tenleytown Running Club summer program.

Hereford Athletic Director Mike Kalisz sent an email detailing the changes. Yet a fair opportunity presents itself this year.” he said. you think Hereford High School. “It’ll be interesting to see if those people have more of a voice. Exception number three comes in 2013.” Quince Orchard took second in the girls 4A race last year. Complaints against the course have focused on the challenging layout that includes plenty of hills and the fact that slower times at the event could negatively influence college recruiters or national meet selections. A site has not yet been determined for this year’s race. but the course beats them mentally. private schools and parochial schools in the District.” said Seann Pelkey.” His team competed in the inaugural DCSAA championship last year.C. “If you’re going to make an AllMet team. Marvin Parker. but Kalisz wrote that other elements of the construction process “will not allow us to guarantee a safe environment for all athletes and spectators.” Pelkey said. held at Fort Dupont Park on a different course than the DCIAA meet. Kalisz wrote that “extensive school renovations” at the high school will force the cancellation of the Bull Run Invitational in September. head coach at Quince Orchard and this year’s meet director for the 4A West region.” Pelkey said. Pelkey received the email on July 5 and sent it to local running websites to post. according to the email. “Our goal and our hope is that if you have a cross-country team. said the race makes sense given that D. The course itself won’t experience any changes until November. and there’s no guarantee of everyone showing up at the start line in November.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 21 . But travel could become a factor in planning for the fall. you want to participate. and Pelkey said the new course won’t alter regular season training. I’d imagine. “The staff at Hereford do everything to get that course ready. it’s easy to make when everybody’s had the opportunity to see each other. head coach at Dunbar. public charter schools. AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON.That in itself stands as an illustration of the difficulty any athlete encounters when trying to claim the title of best runner in D.” With the course out for at least this year. “They see structure is being built where people are playing by the same rules. though. Hereford won’t Host in Maryland “When you think Maryland cross-country. Anyplace else we go is going to involve a lot more work. “It’s important to have our kids run together. He said the team might switch around its schedule to get a feel for a new course if there is a regular season race held at what would be the state site. “Hereford is one of those courses that never lets you settle into a rhythm.” Owens said.” Owens said. stretches a mere 68 square miles. “We’ve been spoiled at Hereford. The school has hosted every cross-country state championship since 1980 with the exception of two years.C. “I think people have bought into what we’ve created and what we’re trying to do. coaches who have lobbied to move the meet in the past have another opportunity. eligible to play under its guidelines.” The Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association has not yet identified a new course for this year’s state championship. Teams may be physically gifted and ready to roll come state time.” The DCSAA has named 46 schools in D. The organization encompasses public schools.C. Membership is voluntary.

“Maybe that’s a blessing in disguise. meaning a two-day meet.” said Chantilly head coach Matt Gilchrist. according to March 2012 enrollment figures used by the VHSL’s executive committee. the top 15 runners in each region qualified to race at state. “but if you have five individuals. Gilchrist said the new rules need to be tweaked. I’ve had enough kids finish in my career in the 16th to 20th spots. from 48 in the old structure. you wait until meets over. don’t fix it. You race the same way. All regions will contain four conferences. Each group had four regions composed of districts. that’s good enough to move on. the designation for the largest high schools. Plus. “You train the same way.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 .Virginia shuffles postseason structure More than 300 high schools in Virginia all face the implementation of a statewide postseason overhaul. That puts the school in the new Class 6A. Classes 4A through 6A will divide into north and south regions. and the general sense that questions n might outnumber answers until closer to the start of the school year. Chantilly ranks as the seventh-largest school in the state. they could not score as a team at the state meet.” Gilchrist said. and the course really gets destroyed?” Individual standards also undergo a revision in the VHSL guidelines. starting with the smallest enrollments in Class A. I think the realignment is a football. schools were separated into the three groups. “Now that kid in 17th. you should be able to score as a full team just like any other team. the Chantilly Chargers won the boys Group AAA state cross-country title in 2012. You assess your team based on what you think they can do. The most distinct modification is that the state will switch from a three-group system to a six-class system. In the old setup. Such semantic changes do carry actual consequences.and basketballmotivated switch. each with up to 11 schools. If five runners from the same school were to qualify as individuals this fall. and hopefully come postseason. 22 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. if it isn’t broke. That math increases the total number of teams running on the state course to 72. “Don’t let them bring a full seven. Schools with the smallest enrollments comprised Group A. different travel plans.” The realities of these changes mean area coaches and school administrators have to think about new schedules. For example. The changes come as part of the Virginia High School League’s realignment plan for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 school years. Now schools will be placed into classes.” Several potential problems could arise with the new system when viewed from a crosscountry standpoint. “I’m not happy about it. six teams from each region now qualify for the state race instead of four. “What happens on Friday if it’s raining. The state championship for cross-country will hold six races instead of three. and did I get one of the 10 spots?” Gilchrist said.” Gilchrist said he’ll prepare his team as usual in light of the modifications. From a track and cross-country opinion. but those 10 individuals cannot be members of the six teams that qualify. Classes A through 3A will split into east and west regions. Under the old arrangement. each with up to eight schools. The new policy will cut the number of spots to 10.” However. “I don’t consider these changes to be an advancement.



Even when races didn’t go well. The two sports.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 25 .” Latour has been playing soccer since she was 4. she admits she gets nervous for races and prefers a laid-back fun run. With some encouragement from family and friends.” While she enjoys the team atmosphere of cross country.” An AP Scholar with Distinction. An honor roll student. she said. Her 3200 relay team has had three top-three finishes at the Maryland State Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field Championships. But as Nakasaka bonded with her teammates.” she said. Latour volunteered 10 hours a week at a local elementary school. gaIthersburg. LAURA NAKASAKA RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO COURTESY OF NAKASAKA AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. assisted the Wounded Warriors Project. bethesda. Isabelle latour QuInce orchard hIgh school. Md. career goals. Nakasaka placed 13th at the 2012 4A Maryland State Cross Country Championship and received her team’s “Most Improved” honor and “Coach’s Award” twice. are “completely different. and community service. Minn. “Remember. the final selection is not only based on running accomplishments. As a way of celebrating well-rounded student-athletes. ISABELLE LATOUR RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO COURTESY OF LATOUR l aura nakasaka “Pain is all mental. the club doubled the number of recipients and award amount to two females and two males (they each received $2000) and removed the MCRRC membership requirement. she said she felt “excited and thankful.LocaL cLub honors the fastest and the brightest M by MaggIe lloyd ontgomery County Road Runners Club (MCRRC) honored four students this spring with its Outstanding High School Runner scholarship. “I love running so much. An aspiring elementary or special education teacher. an award created in 2007 to broaden the club’s outreach to younger runners. but also academics. she began to ease into the sport and appreciate it. In 2012. Her plans are to attend Towson University in Maryland to major in Education and compete for the varsity soccer team. Latour served as secretary of the American Sign Language Honor Society and was involved with the Future Educators Association. the feeling you get from a good run is far better than the feeling you get from sitting around wishing you were running. which assists severely injured members of the military. school activities.” bethesda-c hevy chase hIgh school. a liberal arts school in Northfield. Nakasaka claims that cross country taught her the valuable lesson of how to push through the pain.” When Latour first learned from her coach that she was an award recipient. Nakasaka decided to try cross country when she enrolled at BethesdaChevy Chase High School. “Now it’s hard for me not to run. Md. “It was so tough training over the first summer. Nakasaka will attend Carleton College.” she said. but realized her potential as a runner during middle school. She participated in the Maryland state championship for both cross country and indoor track. Approximately 20 applications were submitted this year. and completed over 100 Student Service Learning hours.

who were all runners in their day.” Withbroe. sophomore. On top of that.D.” High school seniors who are residents of Montgomery County are encouraged to learn more about the award at www. “The combination of being near the front of most races and having unusual hair has led to a lot of recognition as ‘that fast blond haired kid. the Young Democrats Club. m d. he serves as team captain of the Albert Einstein High School Science Bowl team and secretary of Next Generation Maryland. m d.Nicholas simpsoN albert e iN steiN high school. My parents tell me I never really walked. “Running is the perfect combination of peaceful quiet and pushing oneself to the limit.’ Having people shout ‘go Thor!’ from the side of the course or recognize me around town as a runner.” beNjamiN Withbroe albert e iN steiN high school. “Running is an essential aspect of my life.” Simpson posted the fastest finishes by a Montgomery County runner at the 2011 and 2012 3A Maryland Cross Country Championships and West Regionals. a former soccer player.mcrrc. I still run races n with my father when I can.” His performances in running are only matched by those in the classroom. Withbroe says he has been greatly inspired by his family. He finished in the top 25 at the 3A Maryland State Cross Country Championships during his freshman. while also participating in National Honor most of my close friends are on the team with me and practice can be a great time to mess around and have fun. The deadline to apply for next year’s award is Dec.” he wrote in his application. the sole recipient of this year’s Rensselaer Medal for accomplishments in math and the sciences at Albert Einstein High School. while a little strange. NICHOLAS SIMPSON (LEFT) AND BENJAMIN WITHBROE RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO COURTESY OF SIMPSON & WITHBROE 26 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. an incredibly supportive collection of people. which he co-founded. “Both of my grandparents earned their Ph. and the Frisbee Club.s in the sciences. a drive which bleeds out into my academics. but also provides some comic relief. KeN siN gtoN. Today. It also helps me connect with my dad and grandfathers. who was a high level astrophysicist working for the Smithsonian and NASA. that I could recognize and talk to comfortably. I already had a group of people. and an International Baccalaureate Diploma candidate. “I have always loved running. Although running accomplishments are considered for selection. a National Merit Commended Student. and senior years. I am especially interested in the path of my maternal grandfather. In 2012 he was named 1st Team All-Gazette Cross Country by the Montgomery Gazette. KeN siN gtoN. It allows me to push myself against myself. walking in on my first day of school.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . For other young runners.” Simpson added that running not only allows him to channel his energy into something meaningful. feels like I do something pretty cool. applicants are not required to have plans to run in college. and I would like to follow in their footsteps. MCRRC offers youth running series and issues Student Service Learning credit for students in Montgomery County Public Schools. 10. both in running and in academics. It was really nice that. in my grade and above. says he fell in love with running after trying cross country in middle school. missing the entire championship season of his junior year due to a “freak injury. He wrote in his application essay about the valuable network of friends he made through cross country: “Running for Einstein in the summer before my freshman year let me already have a close group of friends when starting school. My friend group centers around the team. Withbroe is an AP Scholar with Distinction.

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Va. 7:30 a. Md.m.m. 25 soUth Lakes 10k Reston. tueSday. Md. aug. aug. Md. the Rave RUN RFK Stadium Washington. 23 Lost Dog 5k Bluemont Park Arlington. 6:45 p. aug. aug. Va.m. 5:30 p. aNNaPoLis teN miLe RUN Navy Marine Corps Stadium Annapolis. Sunday. Va.m.m.m. (noon) Saturday.m. D.m. RUNWASHINGTON Photo By BRiaN W.Friday. 7:30 a. 8:00 a. Va. 8:30 p. 18 LeesBURg 20k/5k Leesburg. RUN ‘N mate 5k Alexandria.m.m. aug. Va. Saturday. WedneSday. aug.m. Sunday. 3k & 1500 meteR Washington. Md. D. aug. 21 tiDaL BasiN 5k. Friday. Va.m. 10 a.5 miLe Burke Lake Park. 7:00 p. 28 RooseveLt RUN 5k Arlington.m. 6:30 p. kNight|sWimBikeRUNPHOTOGRAPHY 28 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. 7:30 a.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . BLUe CRaB BoLt tRaiL RUNNiNg seRies 10k Little Bennett Regional Park Clarksburg. 16 Lost Dog 5k Bluemont Park Arlington. 12 p. 20 PaUL thURstoN 4.C. WedneSday.C.m. 8 a. 17 ComUs RUN CRoss CoUNtRy 5k Comus. aug. 24 easteRN CoUNty 8k Martin Luther King Park Silver Spring. D. aug.C. 7:30 a. 6:30 p. ULtimate FootBaLL FaNatiC 5k aND 5 miLeR Capital Crescent Trail Washington. Va.

Va. D. 9:00 a. 7:30 a. 8:00 a. 8:00 a.m. cade Race FoR the Family Seneca Creek State Park Germantown. D.m. PRiNce William FoRest PaRK 12-hoUR adVeNtURe tRail RUN Triangle. bUlldoG-eaGle 5K Washington. 8:00 p. Fab & FeaRless 5K Allen Pond Park Bowie.m. Va. Md.m.C.m.m. Va. Md. 18 tidal basiN 5K. Md. 3K & 500 meteR Washington. 9:00 a. 8:00 a. Md.m. 5:00 p. Va. 6:00 a.m. D. RiNGiNG iN hoPe: FoR the saKe oF the childReN 5K/10K South Riding.m. abebe biKila day iNteRNatioNal Peace maRathoN & halF Washington. RUN FoR RecoVeRiNG heRoes 5K/10K Carderock. sPRiNt FoUR the cURe 5K Washington. 8:00 a. 8 a. Va.m. NatioNal PRess clUb beat the deadliNe 5K Washington. 15 ReVeNGe oF the PeNGUiNs 10 & 20 mileR Carderock. laKe NeedWood cRoss coUNtRy 10K Derwood. PVi RUNFest 5K Fairfax. 8:00 a. 8:00 a. 3:30 p. (noon) Sunday.c. D. 1 laRRy Noel 15K aNd 3K Greenbelt.28 claReNdoN day 10K/5K Arlington. cRUsadeR 5K Clifton. 9:00 a. Kids Arlington.m. Sept. Md. 8:30 a.m. 6:00 p. Va. WedneSday. Saturday.m Saturday.m. Sept.m. Sunday. Md. Va. Monday. 9:15 a. CONTINUES ON PAGE 32 AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. 8:30 a. 8:30 a. Md.C.m.m.m.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 29 . 21 chicK-Fil-a 5K Fairfax Corner.m. hoWaRd coUNty stRideRs metRic RUNNiNG FestiVal Columbia. 8:50 a. Sept. Md. KeNsiNGtoN 8K Kensington Town Hall. dUlles day 5K oN the RUNWay Dulles Airport 7:30 a. 7:30 a. Va. Sept.C. Sept.m. moUNt VeRNoN tRail Race 4 Four Hunt Park Alexandria. Sept. Saturday. 9:00 a. Va. 8:00 a. 8:00 a.m.m. 9:00 a. 7:00 a. Md. D.m.m. Va. 14 NaVy-aiR FoRce halF maRathoN aNd FiVe mileR Washington.C. Fit.m. liGht the Way 5K Nationals Stadium Washington.22 sUPeR h 5K McLean.m. 7 mcm cRossRoads 4 mileR Quantico. Md. 7:30 a. D. D. Race FoR the FUtURe 5K Anacostia Park Washington. team hoPe 5K Cameron Run Park Alexandria.m. 8:00 a. Va. VhtRc WomeN’s halF maRathoN tRail RUN Fountainhead Regional Park Fairfax Station. Va. aug. 5K Race FoR d. PoolesVille day 5K Poolesville. 8:00 a. Md. Va. Md. Va.m.m.m.C.m tiGeRlily PiNK boa 5K Fairfax Corner 8:00 a. PaRKs halF maRathoN Rockville. D. 8:00 a. Sept. Md. 9:00 a. 8:00 am. Potomac Valley Games tRacK aNd Field meet Edison High School Alexandria. 6 electRic RUN National Harbor. 5:00 p.m.m. sUsco 8K Reston. aRliNGtoN 9-11 5K Arlington. 7:00 a. RUN FoR the schools 5K Falls Church. Va.m. D. 31 KeNtlaNds/laKelaNds 5K Gaithersburg. damascUs FReedom 5K/10K Damascus. edm 5K NiGht time FUN RUN Merriweather Post Pavilion & Grounds Columbia. 7:00 a. 8:00 a. Sunday.m.m. Sept. Sept. saVaGe 7K Savage.m. Md. Sept.C. Va. 8 laUReN’s RUN 5K Chevy Chase. Friday. Md.m.C. Saturday.m.C. Md. 8:00 a.m. 8:00 a.m.m. RUN ‘N mate 5K Washington. 8:30 a.Saturday.C. 12:00 p.

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m.m. D. Md. 9:00 a. Va. Md.m. D. 8:30 a. 9:00 a.m.m. 8:00 a. 8:00 a.m. Sunday.C. Sept 29 HydROcepHaLUs assOciatiON 5k West Potomac Park Washington.m. D. Oct. HOme RUN 10k & 5k Rockville. 9:00 a.C. Va. Oct. Va.m.m.m. 8:00 a. bLack HiLL 10k xc Germantown. 2013 mOUNt VeRNON tRaiL Race 5 Fort Hunt Park Alexandria. 9:00 a. RUN ZOmbie RUN 5k Sterling.C. masON miLe fUN RUN Arlington. (noon) Sunday.m.C.C. Va.m. Md. 5 Race fOR eVeRy cHiLd 5k Freedom Plaza Washington. 20 aRmy 10 miLeR Arlington. D. 8:00 a. 9:00 a. NaVy fedeRaL 5k Vienna.m. Va. 9:00 a. 9:00 a. 12 mcps cONsORtia cROsscOUNtRy cHampiONsHips Silver Spring. Oct. Va. mattHeW HeNsON tRaiL RUN 5k Silver Spring. Oct. 9 a.C.m. 9:00 a.m. 8:30 a.C. Va. 4 take a sick day & RUN a 5k & 8k Capital Crescent Trail Washington. peRfect 10. 32 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. RUN tO RemembeR 5k Washington.m. Va. 8:00 a. Sunday. gLORy days gRiLL cROss cOUNtRy 5k Bull Run Regional Park Clifton. miNd yOUR HeaLtH 5k Cameron Run Regional Park Alexandria. Va. eLLeN’s RUN Chevy Chase. 26 HOpe fOR HeLp 5k Lorton. 7:30 a. Va. backyaRd bURN 5/10 miLe tRaiL Laurel Hill. 13 bOO! RUN fOR Life 10k West Potomac Park Washington.m. pReVeNt caNceR 5k Nationals Park Washington. Oct. 8 a. 8:00 a.m. 9:00 a. 9:00 a. Sunday. D.m.m. Friday.m.m. 8:30 a. cROss cOUNtRy ON tHe faRm 5k Derwood.m. 8:00 a.CONTINUED FROM PAGE 29 5k OktObeRfest RUN Potomac. 8:00 a. 9:00 a. Laps fOR Lexi 5k Sandy Spring. 8:00 a. 9:00 a. 7:00 a.m. fOUNdatiON fOR pHysicaL mediciNe aNd ReHabiLitatiON ReHab 5k National Harbor. Saturday. Md. D. 3k & 1500 meteR Washington.m. RUN fOR tHe RefUge 5k Laurel. Race fOR a caUse 8k Arlington. sOmeRset back tO scHOOL 8k Chevy Chase. 8:00 a. Race tO Rid sids 5k Herndon. Md. cca 5k Leesburg. D.m.m.m.m. Md. 8:00 a.C.m. D. 12:00 p. Va. Md. 9:30 a. Va. Saturday. 7:30 a. Saturday. 10:30 a. Va. Md. Va. faLcON & bRUiN 5k Manassas. Md.m. 8:00 a. Va.C. D. WedneSday. Va.C. 9:00 a.m. mONsteR mask 5k Washington.m.m. RUN! geek! RUN! 8k West Potomac Park Washington. fiNisH tHe Race 5k Sterling. 8:30 a. Oct. D. Va. Oct 16 tidaL basiN 5k. gObLiNs & gHOULs spOOktacULaR 5k Leesburg. 19 st. Md.m.m. Md. Va.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 .m. Rita 5k Four Mile Run Park Alexandria. Saturday. Va. Md. 7:00 a. meN agaiNst bReast caNceR 5k Bethesda. Oct. 6 WiLsON bRidge HaLf maRatHON Mount Vernon. gHOst.m. 4:00 p. 10k/10 miLeR Reston. backyaRd bURN 5/10 miLe tRaiL Lake Fairfax Park Reston. Oct.m.m. 8:30 a. & Washington.

kNiGht|sWiMbikeRUNPHOTOGRAPHY AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON.m. 7:30 a. 9:00am FaiRFax FoUR tUesDay. Va.m. spRoUt 5k Broadlands. Va. D. Listings are edited for length and chosen for their proximity to Washington D. Va. / 8:00 a. It is wise to confirm event details with organizers before registering for an event. NoV. 8:30 a.C.m. 17 Alexandria.Us NatioNal RoaD RaCe ChaMpioNships sUNDay. 6:00pm The preceeding is a truncated version of the comprehensive calendar of races available at RUNWashiNGtoN. uPcOMInG VeteRaNs Day 10k sUNDay. D.m. 7:00am JiNGle all the Way 8k sUNDay. Dates and times are subject to change. DeC. D.CoM.C. 9:00 a. Va. 10 Washington.Sunday. 8 Washington. DeC. GobliN Gallop 5k Fairfax Corner.C. 8:00am .COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 33 .C. 27 MaRiNe CoRps MaRathoN/10k Washington. 31 Fairfax. NoV. Oct. RUNWASHINGTON photo by bRiaN W. /7thRun4WW Continuing to www.Nov.. 50 meter Tot Trot thanksgiving morning . 20 a h c y e k r u t proudly presents 10 kilometer Race. 2013 sponsored in part by register on-line 13 www. 2 mile Fun Run.

C) DESMOND DUNHAM is renowned for building enthusiastic and talented cross country teams. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY JIMMY DALY AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. Thus. Several coaches identified a few qualities they sought in their harriers.A BY REBECCA FRITCHMAN cross country team is more than the seven people who race.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 35 . and that job falls to the coaches. Wilson High School’s (D. success depends largely on the individual efforts of the team members and their ability to motivate themselves and each other.” Lake Braddock coach Mike Mangan says. That dream starts with getting kids out for the team. The high school years are when young runners can learn the principles of running and find a true love for the sport. who must recruit and inspire young athletes with the right combination of insanity and zen so perfect for a cross-country runner. Building it requires convincing teenagers to get off the couch and put themselves through some discomfort. A coach cannot be constantly watching one athlete during a race or training. Self motivation: It’s non-negotiable. thousands of high school runners in every state train and compete with unparalleled dedication and enthusiasm. “You need an athlete who can put their nose where it doesn’t belong and keep it there. While the buzz of the running world often focuses on professional racing.

You have the kids who are comfortable in their own skin and happy by themselves on a trail away from civilization. I still enjoy unlocking every puzzle.” he said. This year the trip was Mesa. Half the battle is believing in and being excited about what you are doing! Cross country is ultimately a mixing of many mindsets. “We have been going to the Manhattan Invitational since 1993. “The goal is be renaissance people. but I do try to talk to each of the 8th grade physical education classes. unique to our area. who have that killer instinct. We hope that learning about hard work and results becomes a theme in their life. last year it was to Woodlands. With each potential athlete I come across. provide encouragement to younger kids. The desire to train and be the best runner can never be larger than the desire to be the best at life. A runner’s intelligence comes down to being able to tell the difference between pushing to the limit and pushing to the point of injury.” Mangan agrees. and who are laserfocused on guts and glory. “We have our Run the Monuments Day. get to tour Manhattan on Friday.” Another thing coaches look for in potential athletes is balance. and responsibility are always first.0 and the n boys were just under.. “Every athlete has to figure out how to fit the training into their life and not the other way around. Coaches. the girl’s GPA was well over 4. We’ve been all over. and motivated? Mangan has a few morale-boosting activities. but it’s a great chance to have the trip of a lifetime with your teammates. family. My team leaders organize team bonding activities. Dedication: Eagerness to learn from the coach and buy into the system is essential. “I try to establish a family dynamic. There are many different ways to get to the same result. excited. Athleticism: A natural aptitude for long distance running is not required to be successful. and race on Saturday. “Running is a part of life. To interest students to lace up their sneakers.” Martin said. The girls team also has an awesome tradition: Mike’s Night. Runners also must understand how their decisions and actions outside of practice affect their running and vice versa. I am always surprised by who steps up. We take the top 9 boys and top 9 girls. Without them. not life itself. “We try to get the students to identify with the history of the program and then want to be part of that history. You have to earn your spot. and are also my pipeline into what is going on team dynamics wise. “School. Walter Johnson High School coach Tom Martin said. “We don’t have a large pipeline for recruiting or anything. we all know that every once in awhile some family members drive us bonkers. too) and then head to dinner at Mike’s American Grill in Springfield.Intelligence: This is not about being able to calculate the drag when drafting off of opponents during races (although knowing how to calculate splits doesn’t hurt).COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . There is also Camp Varsity in Madison. the first question I must answer is. How is it then that the coaches keep the kids happy. Honestly though.” 36 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. really. Ariz. having our family wouldn’t be possible. As coaches. You also have the multi-sport athletes who are more focused on being on a team. They get all dressed up (alumni come. “We also take a big team trip each year. Texas. we set the tone and the kids are the ones that make it happen.” Martin said.” Family as it may be. more than 80 percent of the athletes on the team were on the honor roll. ‘What brought you to us?’” Understanding why someone joined the team helps him better understand how to motivate them. however. Va. It is a great motivator for the kids to get the kids to make the NYC trip.” Mangan said. Of the top seven. the kids on the team are the best recruiters through word of mouth. do look for athletes who are willing to be students of the sport and apply what they learn towards consistent improvement. This past year.” he said.


Mike Agostinella. “It’s just really neat to see me try to apply some of his theories and some of his beliefs. nearly 250 miles apart — both around flat-ish athletic fields with few turns. Mt. Va. Lebanon High School’s success in Pennsylvania is something O’Hara eyes for his Annandale Atom runners. O’Hara. It’s 38 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . O’Hara followed his mentor through Slippery Rock University’s track program and into the coaching ranks.” O’Hara said.) Coach DAVe O’HARA RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY BRIAN W. O’Hara didn’t take long to jump on it.Annandale (Va. KNIGHT|SWIMBIKeRUNPHOTOGRAPHY By DAVID PITTMAN I t doesn’t take much prying to get Dave O’Hara talking fondly about his old high school track and cross country coach. The rules of the virtual dual meet are simple.” So when he received an offer a few years ago to hold a virtual dual meet against his old team. has served as his role model. His coach. I learned through Coach Agostinella. a squad that finished seventh in last fall’s district championship. His experience nearly 20 years ago at Mt. 38. Lebanon High School in suburban Pittsburgh laid the foundation for his running and coaching career. is now the boys cross country coach at Annandale High School in Annandale. The two teams run on the same day in their respective towns. “Everything I’ve learned about coaching.

“That’s part of the long-range excitement of having been a coach. with the top five finishers scoring. O’Hara ran so well Agostinella ended up putting him on the 3200-meter relay team for the district championship.” That mindset was implanted in O’Hara early on in his running days and has carried over into his coaching career. When they’re thinking about beating another person they’re racing two states away. gangly football player was hooked. “When Coach A was talking to you. In year’s past. Mt. He was able to coach the kids up and have all that positive energy come out and they really believed you could do anything. O’Hara hopes to have a deeper. “is to help them develop to their potential to the fullest…That carries on and carries over into all facets of their life. They have won four district championships. AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. He dropped football and by the end of his sophomore cross country season was one of the top three runners. when coaches would mail results to opposing coaches.” O’Hara said. This year. “They might not care as much if somebody else on their team is pushing them or beating them.” Coach Agostinella stresses the improvements his mid-pack runners achieve. “We got beat pretty badly both years. D. stars like Ahmed Bile – who now runs for Georgetown University – have led the pack for Annandale.” Despite having nearly 70 boys come out for the cross country team and what O’Hara sees as some gifted runners. sixth and seventh displacing. but the concept was fairly common years ago. O’Hara still runs competitively in Washington. “That’s one of the things that Coach Agostinella did while I was there. “They love looking at the results and the statistics of all the kids they’re running against. It’s a culture O’Hara hopes to achieve with his team: doing your best means running faster than other squads. “My overall philosophy. before the Internet.” “Each kid felt very special. and won the 1998 state championship when Agostinella was named coach of the year. And as the season wears on. Annandale hasn’t had the success the Pittsburgh-area school has. “They’re pushing themselves to a race limit as opposed to just a time trial. “I’m trying to build a culture and a history at my high school. The two coaches talk several times a year. Runners from the respective teams look at past postal meet results and use it as fuel for training during muggy summer training runs. “Distance runners are such rugged individualists. have been runner-up more times than that. and the low score winning. “He was always a team guy. Lebanon.” RUNWASHINGTON PHoto BY osCAR sHUtt scored like a regular meet. so for now. “It was exciting to see him go on and do some great things and then go into health and phys ed and continue working in the sport. with the Georgetown Running Club. From there.” O’Hara said about his running crew.” Agostinella said. today’s lesson: “Be in the head when the caterpillar splits.” During his freshman track season in 1992. exchanging ideas and catching up. “What’s missing there is really instilling the belief and having the kids buying into the program. He even fits a few cross country races into his schedule. Inter-state sanctioning stood in the way. “However that shakes out in terms of winning is fantastic.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 39 . but don’t let O’Hara fool you into thinking it doesn’t mean something to beat his former coach and school.” O’Hara said. But to him.” O’Hara said. more well-rounded squad.Coach Mike AgostiNellA (center) announces the day’s workout plans to his Mt. and in distance running that’s kind of hard to find. is 2-0 so far. those same runners keep tabs to see how the other runners progress. Lebanon.” O’Hara recalled.” Agostinella had never conducted such a meet before. it’s about developing the entire team.C. He has tried unsuccessfully to get his top boys up to Pittsburgh for a race against Mt. so I’m hoping this year we can have a better outcome.” The Mt. O’Hara was a football player running sprints — like any good Western Pennsylvania kid — when he fell into an 800-meter race late in the year.” Agostinella said. known as “Dave O” to his teammates. you knew he really cared for you. “It’s just a cool cross-state connection that they can make. the tall. this n postal meet will have to do.” Agostinella said. lebanon team in Pittsburgh. not just running but hopefully it carries on into their adult life and what they do for a living and how they deal with developing their kids and so on. or Lebo. Lebanon Blue Devils went 13 years without a dual-meet loss starting when O’Hara ran there in high school. that motivates them a little bit more than just a regular two-mile time trial. What started out as Agostinella helping O’Hara in coaching has turned into two coaches exchanging ideas.” Agostinella said. It’s kind of hard for them to become team orientated. some of these kids that go on and continue the sport and continue their interest in helping other young people. who has been coaching Annandale since 2009.” Agostinella said.


but also to running culture.” Her success. Visualization was Keogh’s way. like. there’s a good time to be had on the cross country team.” she said.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 41 . and they’re all good kids. There needs to be some balance. of embracing the competition without letting it overwhelm her. RUNWASHINGTON PHoTo By ED lUll AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. “I was. to the wackiness of the sport. As runners. AN INDIvIDuAl SpORt fOR thE whOlE fAMIly When Polly Morgan’s son Tommy joined the cross country team at Chantilly High School. and to one of life’s great honors: being on a cross-country team.” she said.” High school running. discipline and delayed gratification. even if he wasn’t in the top seven. It was so simple. I would lie there and go through the entire race in my mind.” she said. but he found one as a harrier. who has time for that? I can’t run 50 miles a week without getting injured. No. and just last year. “I was doing visualization before it was cool. The team is their social life. Now Erin Breitenbach. coaches and parents around here have figured out.Langley High School’s Erin Keogh was the fastest high school distance runner in the country. was a product of running an extra 10 miles on top of whatever her team did that day. in horse fields and surrounded by dozens of new friends. were great lessons for her kids. Erin Keogh was a visualizer. she didn’t think her family would be spending the next six years at tailgates. “I don’t think there are many days we don’t have five-to-20 kids in our house. sister Christie.Racing can be neRve-wRacking. RemembeR to enjoy Running By DICKSON MERCER I n the 1980s . His brother Bobby followed. she recently did a Google search of her maiden name and said she found these “ridiculous things on some blog. “They come to school part of a social group.” The nature of distance running. in a sense. at last fall’s Concorde District meet. and it’s one of the few teams that are basically co-ed. Tommy was a basketball player without a team. taught and demonstrated in a Chantilly mom Polly MURRay masquerades as her daughter. There needs to be some fun. “I heard this was something people had to learn how to do and I couldn’t believe it. for many runners. Christie. someone wrote. Polly saw so many positives in her kids running she rarely knows where to start. is an introduction to competitive running.before Internet forums . of keeping herself centered. The night before races.

who made the varsity team last year as a freshman. And it’s fun. Redmond relies on captains like Foster Ting. “But by far I think it is the expectation of the team that keeps them going.” said Kellie Redmond. Redmond puts together training plans for all of her athletes. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY ED LULL way that didn’t feel forced. “Forget about the bad ones by the time you wake up the next morning. He went on to be a top runner at St. Munro added.” Murray advised. it’s going to be a whole different experience now.” 42 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON.” Ultimately. She has a team listserv.” Morgan said. “The team is so supportive of everyone else. he said: “Running with friends is much easier than running alone and helps the distance go by faster. and she’s not above calling or texting or emailing team members who need a bit of a nudge. Dana Sung. “The main motivation for me is knowing that whatever I do during the summer will have a direct effect on my season.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . Runners need to train. “She was a basketball player too. Francis University in Pennsylvania.S. Then. since the team cannot practice officially over the summer.” Though their sons were content running on the junior varsity team. a rising junior at Wootton and a member of a 3200-meter relay team that won a state title last spring.” she said. said Patrick Munro. “Even though we’ve done this for three years. Sometimes we get food after our runs or go swimming.S.I.” ExcEl at forgEttIng Michael Murray’s standout performances for Gaithersburg High School in Maryland included finishing second in the state in the 3200 and being a part of an outdoor track team that won the 1998 state championship. and continues to race at a high level locally while working at the U. There are no short cuts. boys and girls. Lexi Levenson and Josh Messing to host unofficial practices.S. Redmond’s training plans make putting together a summer training plan easy.The Oakton girls psyche one another up with a pre-race cheer. And the fastest boys cared about how their teammates were coming along. Polly and her husband Tim have a whole new animal on their hands in Christie. we had no idea she’d be this fast. Department of Transportation. the eight-year head cross country and track coach at Wootton High School in Rockville. Declan Devine. The most successful people I know have a short memory of bad days. So what is the best way to motivate high school runners to put in their summer training? “I try to make the summer running as simple as possible for the kids so they don’t have to think. It gives us something to look forward to after.” K.” she said. “You will have plenty of good races and bad races. Additional structure is provided by the team captains’ sort-ofoptional summer training runs. “The kids who are finishing toward the back are as team-oriented as the kids winning the state meet.

She was a longtime soccer player who also plays basketball and lacrosse. Md. “but rather aim for the specific target of the workout and save the racing for the races themselves.” he said. “I definitely think it’s important to not focus on results in high school. recently won a marathon in 2:22:19. Georgetown Day School’s boys and girls cross country teams both won the Washington. when Coach Anthony Belber took over the program. also recommends not burning yourself out in practice. Now the head cross country coach at the Garrison Forest School. which makes you a part of everything n we accomplish. “has always focused on growing a love for the sport and exposing as many children as possible to the sport … Our goal is to develop a lifelong love of running and exercise.” he admitted. A week later he won a road 5K in 14:55 and a 10K in 32:22.” In those moments. a rising senior. he would follow Munro’s advice and run through the summer and on the weekends. joined the team last year. “Our program. D. “I have tried getting them to follow a strict schedule. The Pennsylvania native’s high school best for 5K? Slower than what he averaged in the marathon.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 43 .. On the same day./ Maryland Private Schools Cross Country Championships for the first time in school history. Chris Sloane. At the same event.” he said. “I was extremely under-trained. This fall? Belber expects to have about 35 on each squad.” he explained.C.” A (TeAm) experience One cAn’T refuse Last fall. he had but a dozen boys and just one girl. “You’re just a part of the team. When signed up for cross country she figured the highlight of her season would be setting a personal best or winning a medal. He joined the team his freshman year after getting cut from the soccer team. or when we’re chatting and stuffing our faces on the bus back from a race. Emily Vogt. averaging 5:26 per mile. Vogt said. Thirteen years ago. finishing 12th in the 2000 Maryland State Cross Country Championships.” One of the team’s top runners. and simply enjoy being a part of a team. That said. Berdan urges the members of his girls team to train three to five days a week and do some striders.And be pATienT Dave Berdan of Owings Mills. Vogt was struck by the cohesive of the team.” she said. “I think it is important to not get caught up in racing workouts. AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. times and performances are irrelevant. but then I thought back to myself and realized that is asking a lot out of a high schooler!” Another top local runner and be-patient advocate. if Berdan could take a do-over. though. Sloane ran for Quince Orchard High School. “But it’s moments like when we’re all cheering in our sports bras for the GDS boys team at an important invitational.

2013 .November 16.

shoe manufacturers started building high-end cross country spikes and put in a comfortable outsole. It’s a good entry-level. so it’s not good for a wider foot. the Nike Rival XC and the New Balance 700 series. DM: Another fitting issue to consider — Nike’s flywire structure is very tight. like the Saucony Kilkenny. but the top of a track spike. the upper materials were a little heavier and rugged. and elements from a high-end spike from 2005 are in “regular stuff” now. so they’re designed for the kids who are going to be running on their forefoot for n a while. the 5000 XC is the new high-end model that competes with the Victory and the Carrera. DM: There’s a trickle-down effect. MD: The Saucony Carrera is derivative of their top selling track spike. The Saucony upper is heat-molded and gives you more flexibility. too. and they were the first ones to go to that really high-end spike. SaUCONY CaRReRa RUNWASHINGTON PhOtO COURteSY OF SaUCONY NeW BalaNCe 900 RUNWASHINGTON PhOtO COURteSY OF NeW BalaNCe AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. first spike. They are going to feel closer to a racing flat with some spikes attached than the full-on spike. It’s good for beginners. In the mid-2000s. It was their response to the Nike Victory XC. It has a really soft rubbery outsole. They’ve taken the upper material and made it lighter. Spikes in general are narrower so they can cut down on material and Saucony has more room in the forefoot than Nike. With the high-end ones. MaRk DRath (Pacers Running Stores): Rather than taking a trail shoe and knocking it down to the bare minimum. MD: New Balance’s 900 was one of Pacers’ betterselling high school spikes. they’re very aggressive. DM: With the Nike Rival XC.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 45 . Dave MilleR (Potomac River Running): Older cross country spikes had thicker midsoles for more cushioning. aggressive outsoles for grip.N ew to cross country and looking for the right spike? A pair of buyers for local specialty running stores point out a few elements to help when you go to find the right pair. The transition from a training shoe is a little gentler. you can run on any part of your foot.

” Bandy. spirit and. Annandale’s Luis Aguir moved to Fairfax County and started his sophomore year at JEB Stewart High School. He added a few pounds over the winter months. he dropped two minutes from his 5k time. Finally. Since then his work schedule has largely kept him off the roads. Sometimes this camaraderie even extends beyond team lines. breaking 22 minutes in November. “It was awesome. schedules and lives change over time. she feared she’d be sidelined. appetite. “I ran my fastest mile and two-mile on my way to my 5k. when. “I was running a cross country race and knew that I was one of the last people on the course. but he made a comeback last fall. Every two weeks. but one many adult runners embrace. Even though we were on different teams. “I was able to catch another competitor and we kept going back and forth. He crossed over to long distance running because he loves to compete.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . “My goal is to hit a five minute mile this year. matching their high school selves is a challenging goal.” He’s taking that enthusiasm to start a group of runners who frequent Lake Barcroft. but he still ran within a minute of his goal. I just want to compete. Arlington’s Audra Bandy’s fondest memories of high school cross country all involve other runners. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY BRIAN KNIGHT | SWIMBIKERUN PHOTOGRAPHY 46 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. with a 20:55 at the Crystal City. we just decided to cross the finish line together. not a half hour before.” he said. Thomas Newby was a sprinter at Maryland’s Northwest High School. but she managed to still run the race. says. who ran at Pittsburgh’s Shady Side Academy. will inevitably develop resilient bonds.” n THOMAS NEWBY stretches before the Crystal City Twilighter 5k. I know I have a lot of people finishing ahead of me. and he’s handling it pretty well. but didn’t join the cross country team until his senior year. most importantly. getting down to 22 minutes.” he said. but that’s just pushing me.” She came into the race worried about her leg.A By JAMIE COREy & CHARLIE BAN s bodies. but he was back on track in the early summer. A group of runners that shares the same schedule. A few local runners tested themselves at this July’s Crystal City Twilighter 5k to see how they stacked up. A chest cold caught up with him before Crystal City. “I feel like I’ll be better now than when I was in high school. we had helped each other finish the race.

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ZACH HAWKINS forges through the mud at the Run with the June Bugs cross country race.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY KEN TROMBATORE 48 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON.

training for the Marine Corps Marathon. It may seem like a typical high school cross country race. Md. Gaithersburg. Va. Md. things change between high school and whatever now is. and says he enjoys its close-knit community and the toughest course out there: the Black Hill 10K. family job stress..COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 49 . giving every last bit of effort with legs and shoes covered in mud. And while most high school friendship reunions take place over coffee. many adult cross country runners now balance their passion for the sport with taking care of a family.” he said.. Masterson and Cole have gone for long runs almost every weekend. these adults were enjoying racing off road. Cross country .” Such was the case for Emily Cole and Erin Masterson.runwashington. Md. Va. Md. is rediscovering cross country years after competing in high school.” LocatioN Great Falls. Howard County. They met in middle school.has reunited former high school teammates Colleen Dahlem and Anna Savage. Md. said cross country is crucial to improving as a runner. Derwood. Md. Dahlem and Savage first reconnected during a run in Great Falls Park — the first of many more runs to come. and stayed close friends throughout high school in Annapolis. Here are some. Leading up to the Rock ‘n’ Roll USA and the Boston marathons. Bethesda. where they ran all four years of cross country and track together. “Running on these .” Of course. Derwood. just like they did decades ago. Md. Check the calendar at for more information. 10 years later. a member of the Spanish American Running Club and a cross-country runner since he was 14. “We are both incredibly supportive of one another. both are in same city again.For adults. Emily is a loyal. career changes. “Anna met me at mile 6 in [the DC Rock ‘n’ Roll marathon] as it headed through Adams Morgan. She ran the rest of the 20 miles by my side handing me water when I needed it. “When you train on these kinds of courses. Dahlem says they will never forget high school cross country. Then I headed up to Boston to cheer her on. “Building such a strong bond as we did while high school cross country runners enabled this close relationship. Potomac. which Masterson says are invaluable. nobody paying it any mind. “Now we talk much less about homework and teachers and more about relationships. Md. so. There’s no time machine required to relive a race through mud. I really feel that our adult love of running is what brought us together again and has strengthened our bond. babies and upcoming races. too. Leonardo Placios of Hyattsville. “And I know we’ll always have it. 10 years later. No time machiN e required to revisit cross couN try ruNNiN g By J amie corey fOREvER yOUNG Dahlem says. Rodney Rivera of Poolesville. and. Md. They were finishing the Montgomery County Road Runners Club’s Running with the June Bugs. While their training and lives have evolved.” Masterson says. Race Spin in the Woods Run Aware 5k Howard County Striders Friday Night XC Series Run With the June Bugs DC Road Runners Cross Country Comus Run Lake Needwood Glory Days Invitational Cross Country on the Farm Seneca Slopes 8k AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. Team spirit filling the air as competitors burst into the finish chute and turn back around to cheer for their friends.” As Dahlem and Savage create a new chapter in their friendship. dedicated training partner. Comus. Centreville. “Listening to the Violent Femmes on our Walkman and planning our weekend adventures. not a dual meet against a rival school. M ore than 100 runners’ feet hitting the ground on an open field toward wooded trails.” Masterson says. “Some of our fondest memories are on the bus on the way to meets. A strong storm just minutes away from plummeting the course.and Facebook . “A weekly session of ‘girl talk’ has been a lifesaver for all of us during challenging times and an opportunity to share our joy during exciting periods. Though they traveled to the meet in sedans and SUVs instead of school buses. courses improves our speed and endurance. He’s run the MCRRC Cross Country Series for the past two years. Their days of essay writing and science quiz prep now behind them.. I was so proud of her amazing accomplishment. they trained together on Beach Drive. Gaithersburg.” Dahlem says. Trudging up a hill. have their conversations. They stayed in touch during college. ankle-deep creeks and gruesome hills.” After rekindling their running relationship. but the racers were fathers and mothers with jobs and mortgages. you are faster and stronger.” MoNth April May June-August June August August September October October December There are plenty of cross country races open to adults in the Washington area. Md. weddings. Running together has allowed us to share some of the most important moments n of our lives. And it’s fun. ALExANDRIA 1301 King Street Alexandria. TRAIn With us. VA 22314 703. MD 20910 301.415.0630 PENTAGON ROW 1101 South Joyce Street #B12 Arlington.836.0277 ARLINGTON 3100 Clarendon Boulevard Arlington. see website for details.1463 FAIRFAx 10427 North Street Fairfax. VA 22201 703. VA 22202 703. runpacers.506.495. VA 22030 703.2029 SILVER SPRING 8535 Fenton Street Silver Spring.7811 VALIDATED GARAGE PARKING NOW AT PACERS CLARENDON!* *With purchase. SHOP With us. 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“At a lot of big schools. I think there are so many athletes that the coaches have to focus on that they don’t get personal focus. If something starts to hurt. She fit firmly into one of Herndon High School coach Peter Sherry’s typical prospective collegiate runner categories: She knew where she wanted to go and thought about competing later. Her total weekly mileage will increase to about 60 by the end of the summer. The first was just a campus drive-through with her dad.” he said.” Wittich is already working on a personalized training plan designed by Richmond coaches Lori and Steve Taylor and assistant coach Jon Molz. her mother took her back for an official guided tour and visit. Her approach to picking a college didn’t surprise her coach. who is entering her freshman year at the University of Richmond. the chance to travel with the team.” she said. Chris Pellegrini. though. There were some negatives she had to weigh in her decision. She won’t be able to go out every weekend like a lot of AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. “I can tell from the way I feel during my runs that I have so much left in me and I feel like I need to keep going. Wittich contacted the coaches during her junior year and the following summer made her official visit. Maddie Wittich’s decision to run in college was ultimately easy.” She ended up visiting Richmond several times before contacting the coaches. and longer runs once a week combined with other basic runs to hit about 40 miles a week. The Springfield native is one of three new freshman girls to join the team this year. when she began receiving letters from college coaches and her dad.Maddie Wittich signs her National Letter of intent to run cross country and track at the University of Richmond.” With fewer than 20 women on the Richmond Spiders. encouraged her to look at her opportunities. who remained injuryfree through four years of competitive high school running. I’d contact the coach to see if the program was interested in me. and balancing running with schoolwork her first time away from home. “She’s always been very mature. Virginia Tech and Richmond without contacting the coaches first. fitting into a new team. While college would mean more miles no matter where she went. I’ll contact my coaches. It includes speed workouts. Other things that influenced her decision to continue running in college included the opportunity to run with and against skilled athletes.” said the athlete. The coaches care a lot about each individual athlete. She comes from a lower-mileage high school program that emphasized quality. the coaches’ personalized attention made her feel like she wouldn’t get lost in the crowd. “That’s what I did … because I wanted to make sure I liked the school first. When she liked the campus.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 51 . RUNWASHINGTON PhOtO BY JULie Wittich Rising fRosh weighs pR os and cons of Running colle giately By jacque line klimas W hile she was worried about increased weekly mileage. Other categories include students choosing a program based on the amount of scholarship money available and students who choose their college based on whether they can run on the team. she was looking for a college program with a similar philosophy.” Wittich knew during her freshman year at West Springfield High School in Virginia that running in college was an option. “I still want to improve so much and get new PRs and I know that college will offer that to me. she had a partial scholarship offer and plans made for the next few years. “If I liked the school itself. having watched two of her senior teammates go on to run at Virginia Tech. She didn’t seriously consider it. including Osborn High School’s Emma Nowak. “It’ll be higher mileage. and the outlet of a team to make new friends. She toured Lafayette College. The next fall. “Richmond doesn’t have that many athletes.” she said. but I’m pretty sure I’m ready for that. so [the coaches] fit the program to you and make it very personalized. “Her teammates call her either ‘mom’ or ‘grandma’ because she’s the one they look to for leadership. strides.” said Wittich. until her junior year. a marathoner.

“I believe I’ll have an absolutely awesome time. Hang out with the freshmen and sophomores. However. that’s one of my big goals. because I’d heard how scary it is and knew it would be good to join a sports team. don’t spend too much time getting to know the juniors and seniors on the team. “I will definitely continue to do it. you can make it happen. she said she’s already gotten used to living this kind of lifestyle after running four years competitively in high school. “Going to school somewhere is different if you’re running than if you’re injured. taking care of herself. most colleges.m.” 52 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. or even regardless of whether you are running. who has 11 former athletes running collegiately now.Maddie Wittich (center) races the 1600 meter at the 2012 Virginia high School League championships at SportsBackers Stadium in Richmond.” Wittich is a member of the Class of 2017. While high school runners have races every week. are a major obstacle for freshman student athletes. Wilson said. She ran 5:04. she won’t be competing as often. Debbie Wilson. but they need additional resting time to recover from what they’re doing to their bodies. “I knew there would be great people and that’s exactly what I got. her personal record. “I am unbelievably happy I decided to start my freshman year because I’ve really come to love the sport. “I joined cross country my freshman year to make friends before going into high school. with additional time spent cross training solo each afternoon. Now that she’s formally committed to Richmond and is preparing to get started training with the team in August. I’ve heard nothing but positive things about the Taylors’ program. she’s happy with her decision. every day. I love team and will miss them. While Wittich may be running more miles and more hours. It was a great atmosphere. “They’ll be gone by the time you get there.” she said. “It might be a matter of going somewhere out of state or a smaller school. she said.” Wittich is a little worried about balancing school work with training her first time away at school. but she expects to be a runner for life. It opened up a lot of great opportunities for me. Herndon High School Coach Peter Sherry.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 .” • If you want to run in college.” She can only hope her college experience mirrors her running career thus far. and adjusting to college at the same time. “They need the same seven or eight hours as a normal collegeaged person. college athletes only compete every other week. RUNWASHINGTON PhOtO daVe Watt college freshman. Like the actual school you choose. have fulltime academic support staff on hand to assist students with their college transition. Luckily. the coaches were fantastic. “College athletes are typically sleep deprived. and will need to focus on eating well. they’ll be your teammates for a few years. and getting a good night’s rest. has a few pieces of advice: • Pick the school regardless of who is coaching. “I’m very confident with my decision. Newfound freedom. a new set of coaches to get used to. That said.” she said.” • When looking at a college. said time management skills are the crucial link between success and struggling with college academics and athletics. and its pitfalls. associate athletic director for academic affairs at George Mason University. collegiate athletes tend to graduate on time more than non-athletes and with higher grades. I’d love to do a marathon at some point when I’m done with college. “It’s a different team.” she said. The Richmond team practices from 7:30 to 10 a.” she said. and especially Division I schools.” she said.” For athletes interested in competing collegiately. but there are opportunities for everyone to run for a college team.

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He had heard all about the race from Ahmed Bile. comes from the participation base that coaches built early in the meet’s lifespan. “They’d have 25 of the 150 finishers and send a few kids to the finals.” McGorty said. D.” she said. with qualifiers coming from four regions. as a Chantilly High School junior.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 55 . “You look at who else from around here has made it and they’re great runners who have done well in college and after. As proud as they all were. “I was outkicked my junior year and didn’t go. the field has expanded to 40 runners in each race. “Ron Helmer [former coach at Virginia High School in Bristol and Woodbridge High. South Lakes’ Alan Webb and. as a senior at Langely High School. two-time national champion. in 2012.” northern virginia’s runners shine on national stage By Charlie Ban Langley High School’s ERIN KEOGH. It’s exciting to have a chance to follow in their footsteps or even exceed what they did. it was Sean McGorty.” They were the first parent-child tandem to have qualified for the high school national championship meet.I f anyone knew what the Footlocker Cross Country Championships were all about. he earned a trip to San Diego with a sixth place finish in the south regional meet. were Footlocker veterans with plenty of advice. “ In the 35 years since the race started. the south regional meet director. Two of his high school mentors who ran for Chantilly. nobody was quite as thrilled that he’d be staying at the Hotel del Coranado as his mother. Vicki Verinder McGorty stayed there herself in 1983. and Maryland has had a winner in Sherwood’s Solomon Haile in 2008 and a 1994 runner up in Walter Johnson’s Sally Glynn. including a win by Richmond resident Charles Alexander in 1981. Max Mayo. It’s such a cool experience and I’m so glad he got to go twice. before it was run by Footlocker. along with Georgetown and now Indiana universities] brought his entire team here for a few years. she raced Balboa Park’s course for the Kinney National Championships. Brad Siragusa and Eric Post. In 2011. Maryland and Washington. an Annandale Atom making his second trip. which underscores the tradition Northern Virginia has built at the national level. McGorty. It’s part recognition and part networking for runners and an easy way for college coaches to see recruits face off “Making this meet gets you excited for the future. the region has a two-time girls champion in Langley’s Erin Keogh and runner-ups in West Springfield’s Sharif Karie. when. from 32 and 28. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO COURTESY OF TIM O’DOWD AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON. On top of 84 qualifications. I was so nervous he wouldn’t make it.” Mayo said.C. And it wasn’t just because she was proud of her son. “Watching Sean kick it in his junior year. said Virginia’s strong showing at the race. both compete in the northeast region.

T. where she directs the health education department at A. McGorty’s focused his first trip on making “the book. She won both titles by 24 and 23 seconds. “They started the masters earlier than everyone else. Even Webb.COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 “Afterward.” He came up a bit short in the last stretch. “There was no question it included the best runners. You start to get a feel for how competitive people are.” the yearly review of the race that includes the top 10 finishers.” Centreville’s Eric Post qualified in 1995 and 1996 and admitted the whole experience could be overwhelming. to going to the Olympics. before parents and coaches started holding their runners back. It was the kind of race you remember for the rest of your life. “I got there and wanted to race for the win. Following a few team titles at Brigham Young University. Erin Keogh Breitenbach won back-to-back titles in 1985 and 1986. “It was cool to get to meet them to talk about training and just spend time with people who were so focused on running fast. She was followed at the national meet by Annandale’s Aimee Harms in fourth in 1985 and Lake Braddock’s Wendy Neely in third the next year. everyone was so nice.” he said. It’s surprised me these records are still there. She knew about the race because her sister. Dyestat was getting big and I would spend a lot of time on the Internet. but it’s part of who I am. the older girls were really supportive and I knew that was something I wanted to keep going if I made it back. She arrived in Texas almost 30 years ago to run for the Longhorns along with Gabrielle Pohlmann of West Potomac who also qualified for Footlocker. including a 4:55 mile a few years ago.” she said. I couldn’t believe I’m still doing this. because we’re old and need to run before it gets too hot. for a high schooler. Jessica. Laura Heiner Turner.” She lives in Austin. “Throughout my senior year.Chantilly’s SEAN MCGORTY and his mother. respectively. but I was a little intimidated. in what was a golden age of running for Northern Virginia high school girls cross country. when his showdown with Dathan Ritzenhein and Ryan Hall received so much fanfare. “I think we ran so fast because we came in at the tail end of when girls starting having so many opportunities to compete.98 mile cross country course. People had this ‘I can beat anyone .” she said. “I was so thrilled to make it there my first year. but it introduced runners to a new kind of intensity.” The Northern Region Cross Country/Track and Field Association keeps records of the fastest times at Burke Lake’s 2. and it was always the best of the best. I wanted to finish in the top five.” she joked.” Erin Swain Taylor won the south region meet in 1999 after “completely bombing” the year before and found the experience to be comparable. she pursued a professional running career before starting a family. “When I was a senior. He met that goal with a 10th place finish and came back with higher aspirations after an undefeated fall season. who now lives in Washington state. now the American record holder in the mile. reading about who was racing and what they had run” she said. but he was in the best position to win of any athlete from the Washington area since Karie lost by two seconds in 1996. qualified when she was in eighth grade. and both years saw five girls from the area qualify. “All we did was run consistently. was out of it a mile into the 2000 championship. “Once I got to San Diego. qualified each of the four years she was at Centreville High School. “It was ‘the’ race. She still races. Still University.” Post said. and the lists of the 30+ best times are littered with national qualifiers. and it was a goal ever since. Breitenbach and Webb still lead the lists. everyone did it. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO COURTESY OF MCGORTY Those kids would come back with stories that excited their peers. She ran at Lake Braddock and now lives in Arlington. both national qualifiers as high schoolers. 56 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. Langley’s VICKI VERINDER MCGORTY.

Mohammen Musse. West Springfield (20). Post recalls: “It’s hard to run your best race. Robinson (23) Alexa Lange. Andrea Lengi.” West Springfield senior Carolina Alcorta finished 16th in her first trip last year and figures to be one of the top high school seniors in the country. Kathy Newberry. Thomas Jefferson (13). South Lakes (2) Webb (8) Andrew McLeod.” Post didn’t realistically think he could contend for the win. “It’s smaller than some of our meets against other schools. Fork Union/Fairfax resident (23) Aden. Lake Braddock (6). Woodson (20) Meghan McCarthy.” she said. that guy. Langely (1). and that’s what you need. It’s pure racing. Chris Banks. get the most out of yourself that day. things can throw runners off of their game. Robinson (26) Heiner (5). Annandale (25). T. Eric Post. Alisa Harms. Woodbridge (30). Gabrielle Pohlmann. West Potomac (28). Hayfield (13) Beth Fahey. Kristi Cassell. Williams (3) Clifford Holtz. Lake Braddock (31) Victoria Verinder. hovered around the top 20 mark the whole time. so his goal was to win AllAmerican honors with a top 15 finish. Edison (12) Mike Spooner. Potomac School (14) Alan Webb. Mark Rusciolelli (29). Susan Volpe. Kim Desmond. “I had a pretty good idea how to handle things. Woodbridge (30) Keough (1).T. Amlesom Teklai. Jefferson (28) Volpe (18) Keough (5). Fork Union/Fairfax resident (10) McCarthy (22) Jackie Kerr. Brooke Point (31) 1994 1993 Karie (9).” For all the glory that comes with making the national final. Jessica Heiner. Woodson (21) Jim Colling. Langley (30). Nobody care about the clock. West Springfield (23) Brad Siragusa.C. It was the worst because I missed seeing the two-mile marker along the brushy trails in Orlando and I completely lost track of where I was in the race. Jackie Concaugh. Chantilly (2) Girls Sophie Chase. I remember being absolutely furious as I sprinted the home stretch. Karen Sanfacon. Neely (11). Centreville (DNF) 1991 1990 1989 Jama Bile. Aimee Harms. a personal best for the year. Woodbridge (25). Oakton (33) 2011 2010 2009 2008 2006 2005 McGorty (10). Annandale (12) Bile (14) Kevin Dowd. Caroline Alcorta. “It was one of the best and worst races of my career. and that’s what I love. Thomas Jefferson (27) Laura Heiner. “You have all of the best runners there and you really have to earn it because so few people make it. Kerr (28). West Springfield (38) here’ attitude. Woodson (31) 1985 Andrew Hudson. it comes back to you just have to beat this guy. Annandale (27) 1988 McCarthy (12). Oakton (29). Lake Braddock (27) Erin Swain. the travel involved.” he said. Edison (17) 1995 Karie (2). you’re just trying to beat people. John Stein. Annandale (21) Erin Keogh.” he said.local histoRical ResUlts Boys 2012 Sean McGorty. Chantilly (14). Eric Post (16). W.COM | RUN WASHINGTON | 57 . West Springfield (2). Shannon Sarabyn. South Lakes (23). Paul VI (31). Woodbridge (26) Andrea Volpe. Lake Braddock (31) 1986 Jeff Pajak. Chantilly (38) Melissa Dewey. she has her eyes set on Footlocker at the end of the fall season. Pohlman (30) 1984 1983 1982 1981 1979 Kevin Ambrose (19). Lake Braddock (17) Kelley Otstot. there are a lot of factors to run your best race. W. Hollie Moore. Though the competing Nike Cross Country National meet has popped up in the past few years. Ahmed Bile. Forest Park (27) Cara Keirnan. I emerged from the brush to the home stretch with way too much leftover. James Madison (31) 1987 Anne Evans. Allie Klimkiewicz. Chantilly (18). West Potomac (32) 1996 Sharif Karie. “ It was the best because I finished in 15:16 for the 5k. “The clock gets thrown out the window. Centreville (26) Chase (11) Chase (38) Paige Kvartunas. Annandale (25). Kweder (9).T. Katherine Helland.’” 2004 2003 2002 2000 1999 1998 1997 AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 | RUN WASHINGTON.” Osbourn Park’s Kevin Ambrose had a memorable race that didn’t turn out as he planned in 1981. both Osbourn Park Dwight Stevens. Daniel Ireland. Awtrey (17). Centreville (5) Liz Awtrey. Heiner (15).T. Lake Braddock (30). Mark Rumple. Lake Braddock(3). Judy Stott. Wendy Neely. Annandale (4). Fairfax (18) Leoule Degfae. Michelle Farmer. Herndon (15). Lake Braddock (4). Elizabeth Williams. You did what you can to do to be top eight at the regional meet. Langley (22) Ibrahim Aden. West Springfield (16). Chantilly (31) Kerr (26) Heiner (27). Eric Kweder. W. McCarthy (21). That silly race n still haunts me today with ‘what ifs.

COM | AUGUST SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2013 . but what mattered was inside. hop behind the wheel of race organizer Jay Wind’s maroon Ford Aerostar XLT van. It handled well enough. RUNWASHINGTON PHOTO BY MATTHEW LEHNER 58 | RUN WASHINGTON | RUN WASHINGTON. or have a lot of fun if I stole the van and went on the lam: Arlington’s JAY WIND searches for just the right piece of equipment while preparing to time the Father’s Day 8k. Enough equipment to manage a road race. including several shot puts Banners A stack of novelty flying discs PVC piping Bolt cutters Tents A beach ball A plastic novelty oversized lime BY CHARLIE BAN If you’re hoping to catch some looks in Georgetown. for a spin around M Street and Wisconsin Avenue. I did in 2011.CELEBRATE RUNNING • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • A scaffolding for the finish and start lines Enough cones to set up a driver training course A few tables and chairs Some odds and ends that could probably repair a metro escalator A computer older than me Ribbons A loudspeaker A wooden train whistle Extension cords to stretch to a 5K turnaround Miscellaneous track implements.