No. 132 [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“I am 36, I’ve been running for about three years, and I don’t really have a great story. I just started running because I had young children, and it was the easiest thing to do. I’m a little bit of an obsessive-compulsive person, so when I do something, I do it. … I still feel like every race I learn something new about myself and maybe what I can and what I can’t do. I’ve seen myself be able to do things that I never thought I’d be able to do.”

No. 131 [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“I always have a cigar after every race, even if it’s a 5K. I got married when I was 47, and in three years, we had four kids. We don’t have friends that can help us this morning, so my wife is at home with the kids. I did not train at all for this. I’m 30 pounds overweight, I’m 53, I didn’t set foot on the street for the last month, I’ve had two meniscus operations, but I paid my money, so I might as well get tortured. My PR is a 3:05, and I think if I got back down to weight, even at my age, I might be able to get close to that. I did a 3:25 a couple years ago. This time I was gunning for 4:00, and I just blew up at [mile] 18, so I did 4:25.”

No. 129, Revisited—3rd Visit [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“One of the things I’ve learned from these coaches is that you can learn so much through running that applies to your life. The skills of wanting to be excellent and wanting to work hard and be motivated are skills that you can learn in your work, in your relationships with people, in life after running. You’re building the person you want to be. Cross-country, for me, has helped shape the person that I am today.”

No. 129, Revisited [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“My main advice [to high school runners] would be to have confidence in yourself, especially at their age, they don’t even know their potential. Not to be scared of working hard and committing yourself to the sport. Continue to enjoy it. In a race, don’t be afraid to say, ‘What can I do today? I just want to leave it all out there.’”

No. 129 [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“As a head coach, there’s so much you need to balance, but the biggest for the athletes is that balance of being upbeat and positive but still having an intense, serious approach to the sport. I’m serious about my sport, so I want you to be, too. But cross-country is so unique, because you get so many different runners from so many different paths. … It’s important in life to have your fun, but then also, some days you have to get down and work.”

No. 128 [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“My parents have motivated me the most, because they always said, ‘Do your best. Give your best effort, but always have fun out there.’ Before every race, they make notes of motivation, and I find them in different places. They started it this year, and I feel like I’ve done better because of them.”

No. 82, Revisited—3rd Visit [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“I go out by myself sometimes [on easy runs], and I’m just thinking through my mind like, ‘Why am I running? What keeps me going for this?’ I’m still really unsure about it. It’s weird—a weird feeling. But I like it. I like running, but at the same time, I don’t. It’s back and forth, like yin-yang. That’s what running is.”

Nos. 115 & 116, Revisited [Runners]

Photo by Will Hewitt
Photo by Will Hewitt

Left: “On the bus rides back, [the Trap House Runners] are hanging out, sitting with each other, talking about our race, giving each other advice, talking about injuries you might have, soreness. It’s kind of like a family among the team. … Couple of guys on the team, this is their first year, so it was the older guys giving them advice; don’t go out too fast your first mile, or make sure you have small steps going up the hill, or how to navigate a course that’s really tough.”

No. 115 [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“Last season, I really wanted to break 17 minutes [in the 5K], but I didn’t run at all in the summer because I kind of thought I would do it without any work. I was just being dumb. And that definitely did not happen. I was kind of mad about that, and then during my track season, I actually worked in the winter, so I finally had a really good track season. I learned from that dumb thing I did that one summer. So now this season, I’m coming back really strong. I ran a lot this summer.”