What is your assessment of the 2019 cross-country season for Uni High?
For me personally, I actually struggled with low ferritin problems (iron deficiency), so that was a little frustrating. ... But we also lost a top runner, Anika (Kimme to graduation), which I think was a huge blow as a team. But we actually got Kate Ahmari, who’s kind of filled her place (as a freshman). So I think our team overall was in a similar spot, and we kind of had similar runners.
What have you done to treat your low ferritin condition?
I’ve been regularly taking iron supplements to keep it up, and I’ve been taking Vitamin C, which helps the iron be best absorbed. Throughout the season, at first I didn’t even know I had low ferritin. But because my times weren’t improving even though I put in the work ... it just felt like something was wrong. ... (With the iron supplements) my times just continued to drop and I saw improvement.
Do you have any concerns about preparing for the upcoming season in the ongoing pandemic?
Especially because a huge part of cross-country is obviously the team aspect, and running is a really hard sport. It’s painful, and it’s something that it really helps to have a team around you and people doing it with you. In previous years we’ve been able to meet up together and run together over the summer ... which has definitely helped with keeping each other in check and accountable. ... With this pandemic, I think it’s kind of difficult because we can’t see each other, and running by yourself gets tiresome.
Do you have a favorite memory from your time with Uni High cross-country so far?
From the 2018 season, our graduating senior, Anika Kimme, it was her senior night, and there’s this time when we were all walking up the (U of I) Arboretum hill. We were all hand in hand, pushing her up in this wagon, and the sun was very low-set and very pretty and we took pictures.
Everyone came together, and we were all having fun.
Colin Likas is the preps coordinator at The News-Gazette. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter at @clikasNG.