Weekend Takeaways: Cross Country is Back!

Well folks, it's back.

The leaves will be falling soon. The sun is setting a tad bit earlier. And it's finally time for cross country season.

We've finally had that faint feeling in the air that the weather is starting to cool off a little bit. Those afternoon runs at 3 pm as school starts back will be pretty unbearable for the next couple of weeks. But soon, we'll be running in brisk winds with long sleeves.

For now, there's not much to recap. But I'll post some of my biggest takeaways from the weekend in cross country every week. I'll also bring in my own experiences as a cross country runner myself. Four years ago, I was beginning my senior season in Nashville. You'll get my perspective on training, racing and creating good habits in these weekly recap columns.

If you haven't had a chance to yet, make sure you check out our preseason rankings for this upcoming cross country season. We've covered division one so far. Give it a look.

We had a lot of results come in from the McMinn Home Meet this past week. And it was Soddy Daisy's Max Blevins who took the top spot, running a 16:31 to open up his senior season. That's an excellent way to start the fall. Opening up your season on a high note like that can change the entire outlook of the fall.

But at the same time, not setting a personal best in week one isn't the end of the world. In fact, it shouldn't be a remote concern. 

Over the course of a three month season, you can only budget so much energy. And fitness in November matters a lot more than fitness in August. That's not a secret.

But emotional energy is exerted in the same way. If you get too high or too low after a big run in August, then you won't have the energy to get yourself ready for a state championship in November. Or maybe that big personal best when you're at peak mileage at the end of October.

Perspective is so important this time of year.

Cleveland's Ryan Lovelace was likely the performer of the week. The freshman posted a 16:35 to open up his season. That comes three months after he won the middle school state championship in the 1600 with a 4:47. He'll be a name to remember moving forward.

There's a long way to go, but it's good to see cross country results rolling in once again. Pretty soon, we'll be gearing up for a trip to Steeplechase. It's going to fly by.