KRISTINA OLSEN - CROSS COUNTRY
It is my pleasure to introduce myself to you and to have the honor of writing this year's cross country blog. My name is Kristina Olsen and I am junior at UAB. I run mainly distance in track in the spring and compete in cross country in the fall.
This year's cross country team is very fresh and talented. We have eight freshmen, plus four returners. We have a strong and positive outlook for this season.
The beginning of August always brings jitters, a new group of girls and the standing tradition of the four-mile time trial. The time trial jitters turned into excitement, as we posted the fastest beginning-of-the-year times in UAB history.
After the time trial, we began preparing for the season. First on our schedule was Belmont. Despite the wet and muddy course, we ran well, placing third place behind Vanderbilt and Tennessee. We had four girls place in the top 30. Immediately after Belmont came the Memphis Twilight Classic. Memphis turned out to be another great race, despite the adverse conditions of hot, muggy air. Three of us placed in the top 20 and we had another third place finish, behind nationally ranked Arkansas and Kentucky. This was a great confidence builder!!
After Memphis, we had three weeks of vigorous training before our next race at Louisville. In that time, we had a long run in which everyone had a good time and we had an excellent 800m session amidst an increase in mileage.
Saturday we had our third race at Louisville and this time we had higher expectations. The course was fast, the ground was solid and the temperature was cool. Aside from the race, we got to experience a little of the fall foliage! We had stellar individual performances, but were disappointed with how we finished as a team. We had another third place finish behind Texas and Georgia State. This race was a lesson learned, and now we look ahead to the Disney Classic on October 11th.
Also, thanks to all of the parents and family who come to the races! We are very grateful to have all your support.