Although we have yet to have a meet, I am confident that we've done just about everything possible to get the best performances we can this season. We have the strongest base this team has ever seen. The 6 months of distance running, strength training, intervals and initial speed work were well worth it. Greg was in New York City for all of last week with a class trip. This was planned a year ago and while it put a kink in his training schedule, did not seem to do any lasting damage. He did manage to get in three abbreviated days of running in NYC. Yesterday was his first track workout since returning. It was a tough one, four sets of 400/200 at pace with a 1 minute break between intervals, 7 minute break between sets. This is a strength workout designed to build a kick. I knew this would be a bit of a "shock" to Greg's system, being off for a week but he came through. Although he lost his lunch after the third set (sorry for the graphic detail), he was back on the line and completed the set at pace. I think he'll be back to form by the end of this week.
Spring break is next week and most of the guy are going away on vacations. The timing could not be worse. Although all will be encouraged to run while away, I'm not confident that many on the team will run and we will not be sharp for our first meet as a team. I include everyone in this, not just the sprinters. However, I am the lone coach who will be in town next week and will supervise workouts for those who are staying in town for the week. For the 400 group, only Greg and one other runner will be around but it will be a great opportunity to get in a hard week of training in an intimate setting! After next week is over, we transition to our competition schedule and focus on pure speed work. We're going after workouts that feature a limited number of intervals at high speed with rest as required. This should be a great indicator of where we're at.
As I've said before, I don't want to predict season end performances but I'm confident that the guys are in shape to do their best (whatever that is!). On a purely personal note, and one that reflects tremendous parental pride, Greg and two other guys from the 400 were elected tri-captains for the team this year. I take this as a measure of respect for the amount of work and the example this group has set for the team. This is a pure election by the team members and is not influenced in any way by the coaches. What else can I say? I'M PROUD OF MY BOYS!
More to come as we get into the meet schedule. My biggest concern now is to avoid injuries!!!!