Fall - Boys Cross Country
How far are high school races?
We typically run in meets that are either 3 miles or 5 kilometers (3.1 miles).
What are the practice times & when does the team race?
From our first day of practice in late August until school starts, our practice times (& locations) will vary depending upon a variety of factors (we try to practice in the mornings when it’s cooler; we try to take advantage of our local parks, like the Dishman Hills or Iller Creek; we occasionally have to move practice times to work around other school activities like Crimson Crew meetings or freshmen orientation). Once school starts, things become really predictable. On non-meet days, we practice from 2:45-4:45. We have GSL meets on Wednesday nights, and we don’t return to campus until approximately 6:30 or 7:00 pm on meet nights. We go to invitational meets on most Saturdays, and those meets are often out of town and all day affairs. See our schedule of meets here.
What if an athlete needs to miss all or part of practice?
Just like with class, there are two types of absences: excused and unexcused. Excused absences should be prearranged, in writing, with the coaches. Just a short note is sufficient (date, time, reason)–coaches have so many athlete schedules to keep track of that we need notes to keep everything organized. Athletes should not ask to miss a practice or leave practice early except for appointments (as in dentist or doctor, not hair or nails!). We understand that sometimes family issues come up, and if that happens, we expect a short note from a parent letting us know that an absence should be considered excused (as in, a short note the next day saying something along the lines of “please excuse my daughter’s absence on __ due to family emergency”). An athlete who misses part or all of the school day due to an excused illness is also considered excused from practice, but please give us a short note upon return so that we know that’s why someone was gone. Unexcused absences are not tolerated. Please also note that an absence is considered unexcused if coaches don’t receive a note from the athlete in advance. Athletes should never ask a teammate to tell the coaches about an absence–that would be considered unexcused.
What equipment does a cross country athlete need to have?
The biggest mandatory item that all athletes will need to purchase is a good pair of running shoes. The way to know that a pair of shoes is right for an athlete is to go to a reputable running specialty store where the store clerks will look at an athlete’s running form to ensure the proper fit. Athletes will also need to come to practice in running-type clothing. P.E. clothes are fine, but synthetic clothing is best (especially once temperatures start to drop in the fall). Cotton tee-shirts are okay so long as the weather is nice. Avoid cotton or cotton-blend socks as they retain moisture & can cause blisters. Athletes will also need running pants and long-sleeve shirts/jackets for when the weather gets colder. We recommend that varsity athletes & upper JV athletes buy distance spikes or racing flats for meets & some hard practices. These are not mandatory items & we have a few pairs that we can lend out for the season. Running watches are also recommended (a Timex-type watch with a chrono feature & lap memory). Every athlete should also bring a water bottle (w/ name written in permanent marker) to every practice and every meet. Team uniforms will be checked out to each athlete during the early part of the season; there is no fee for uniforms unless items are lost or damaged.
Does an athlete need to compete at the varsity level in order to earn her letter?
No. Athletes should refer to the “How to Earn a Letter” page in their training log for exact lettering criteria, but non-varsity runners who earn twenty or more points over the course of the season can still earn a letter in cross country.