Sept. 8, 2009
Clay Martin, Junior
Hey guys! My name is Clay Martin and I will be writing a blog about my training this season. I'm studying chemistry here at Northwest so I am quite a busy guy. I hail from Blue Springs, Mo., where I graduated in 2007, which makes me a junior at Northwest. It's hard to believe that I am a junior, let alone been running for eight years. The lumps of scar tissue on my left knee and right hip remind me of that. Running is 5% physical and 95% mental. I am here to show you all the mental side of distance running. It's the most intense love-hate relationship you will ever witness. So here we go..
I must admit that I feel a little strange sharing my top secret training strategies on the internet … just kidding. There are no secrets about cross country training. It's pretty simple, get your butt off the couch and go run. It's probably one of the hardest things to do over the summer, but my team has done a great job putting in the summer miles. We had a lot of injuries over the 2008-09 cross country and track seasons which devastated us last year. TR Pursell and Jared Walker are two runners who would have had a huge impact on our team's outcome at conference last season. Now, we have them healthy and as strong as ever for 2009. We also had a few guys injured during track season. Ben Chappell and I are coming off a spring injury, but one wouldn't be able to tell now. Our team as a whole is the healthiest we've ever been, thus we are ready to rock and roll in 2009!
This season we are out for revenge. After finishing last in the conference, we have to get tough! Toughness is the one thing that we are going to bring to every meet this season. During the last few weeks of practice, one can see toughness and determination burning in our eyes. Our first workouts have been fantastic. We started off with 9.5-mile regression runs with designated leaders. Each loop usually dwindles down to less and less runners, but this year everyone stayed packed up nearly the entire workout.
Last weekend we added a 7-mile workout where we alternated hard and easy miles and finished the last mile all out on the track. I had to wait to do the workout later in the day, but the lead guys splits were as follows: 5:06, 6:20, 5:15, 6:31, 5:00, 6:49, 4:58. Pretty impressive I must say.
I had to get some ultra-sound treatment on my left leg so I waited a few hours later to do the workout. My old teammate who is an all-American form Graceland University came down to join me. Our splits were as follow: 5:08, 6:35, 5:09, 6:50, 4:51.8, 7:00, 4:52. I had an advantage over the other guys knowing their splits beforehand which made it easier to push through the pain.
I have never been so spent at the end of a workout. Nothing beats the feeling of endorphins rushing through your central nervous system like a raging river. The feeling of lactic acid burning through my arms and legs foreshadowed the feeling at the end of race.
All in all, preseason went extremely well. Up next we have a two-mile time trial and then the Bearcat Open Sept. 12. It's time to get tough!
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