I had a little bit of anxiety. Being one of the top runners in Kansas and you get to Tulsa and everyone is a state champion somewhere. So not knowing whether or not I’m going to be as successful was a big part of it.
Training hard was not just going to the track at 3:30 and running hard. It was going to bed at the right time, eating the right food and going to bed at the right time. Training was all day long. Track became my life. It really became more of a science to me. Track literally became when to get up, what to eat and when to go to bed.
Cross country was something that started off as a punishment from my father for low grades. I guess he didn’t realize it would take off so well. It gave me something to do with my free time and it taught me to be accountable.
The first day of practice I couldn’t run four miles on my own. I ran two miles and then I had to walk two miles. I was going to quit. It was just pure running, I wasn’t running with a ball. I didn’t have anything to throw or shoot, it wasn’t fun.
A lot of these long distance runners start out at junior high. They have just as good times but they’re also running 80 miles a week. So you see a lot of potential in someone who is running 20 miles a week. You see a lot of growing potential.