“In high school, we didn’t have a cross-country team, but I really wanted to run cross-country because I loved it in middle school. So my mom wanted to fight for me and give me that chance, so she would take me to meets, and we’d just follow Jordan Dekker’s team around because we knew they’d be there. [My mom] would just be like, ‘My daughter really loves cross-country. Can she run in your race today?’ And they’d let me in, and I’d get to run, and I had so many more opportunities. I got to race at state that year, even though I just randomly entered cross races when my mom found them. She’s not a runner at all—I don’t know if she’s run a day in her life—but she was like, ‘You can do it; we’re going to do this.’ She was like my coach. It was really cool, because she believed in me and fought for me when that could’ve been it.”
No. 105, Revisited—3rd Visit [Runners]
“I had plantar fasciitis for a year-and-a-half, and it’s still not quite gone. But I raced through all last track season and just sucked it up, so then I could go compete at nationals. It worked out really well because we did well and it was worth it. But then I had to take my entire summer off, which I wasn’t expecting to do because I thought I could just heal up in a couple of weeks. So I didn’t do any of my summer training, and it was kind of scary because by the end of the summer, in a weird way, I started enjoying not running. It scared me because I wasn’t training and I was enjoying the lazy life. That’s really scary because I love running, and then to think that I would actually enjoy not doing it was really scary for me. But when I started running again after a month of torture—I was trying to jump back in after no summer training—I loved running more than I had before I was injured. I loved not running, but I loved running more than I loved not running.”
No. 105, Revisited [Runners]
“We were on a Sunday morning long run, and it was like eight miles that day. There were five or six of us, and we had found a new route that month, so we were exploring it on the other end of town. We’re running through a not-so-nice neighborhood, and obviously we’re really used to dogs, but our coach’s daughter, Alyssa, is really good with dogs—she trains dogs—so she taught us that when we see dogs, we gotta stop and just stare them down, and they’ll back away. So we’re running, and all of a sudden we hear all this barking. Three pit bulls and a bulldog come charging at us, and they’re just blazing. We tried to stop and stare at them, but they don’t stop, and we’re scared they’re going to bite off our calves. We’re running out into the middle of the street, then we smacked into a car. Now we’re pinned between this car—which we hit, and the driver was probably really mad at us—and these dogs that are going to eat us. We’re all screaming, not knowing what to do. And now the dogs are like a foot away from us. All of a sudden, this cop comes out of a cop car and starts hitting the dogs with a stick and backing them away. He gets between us and the dogs and saved us. … We haven’t run that way since.”
Julie (speaker) is on far right.