Running through mental obstacles

Junior high cross country overcomes the barriers of the sport


Photo courtesy of: Adam Symson

The WHHS junior high girls’ cross country team gets together to wish each other good luck at the Ohio State Championships.

Walking into a classroom at WHHS, the seats are filled with students who are all part of different clubs, activities or hobbies. One popular sport at WHHS is cross country.

For a whole season, runners train as hard as they can to compete not only with other schools, but with themselves.

But when a runner tune into a mindset of allowing yourself to push through the boundaries your body through an exhilarating run, they are trying to outrun everyone around you including themselves.

For Evy Westrich, ‘25, running has never been easy. “It’s hard to figure out if the pain and discomfort is worth it,” Westrich said. “Comparing myself from now to when I started, I’m so much better than before.”

Though Westrich says that running can be difficult, she also believe that she will not see an immediate improvement, but continuing through tough times is when a change can begin.

“If you want to run, it’s a hard thing to do, but running even when you don’t want to is what counts,” Westrich said.

Pushing themselves when they feel like they can’t anymore is a huge stepping stone that any runner must face in order to succeed.

If you want to run, it’s a hard thing to do, but running even when you don’t want to is what counts.”

— Evy Westrich, ‘25

“Getting comfortable being uncomfortable,” Logan Symson, ‘24, said. “It’s really hard to run, but it feels good when you finish.” Symson applies this to her life daily because she knows that in order to run to the best of her ability, she must dig deep into her mind to let her body run through the small amount of time that leads to the finish that she desires.

Through triumph and success, trials and failure, pushing through the pain is something that many runners at WHHS learn early on to ensure a successful season.

To learn more about how the season went for our runners, you can visit the WHHS website to view the roster, practices and other information about the team.