SANTA CLARA, Calif. - While many of the Santa Clara students are sleeping in late and watching t.v. all summer, one of our very own Santa Clara women's cross country stars is doing anything but that. She's been keeping busy training and improving herself as she's determined to come back stronger than ever. SantaClaraBroncos.com (SCB) had a chance to catch up with the senior Hayley Ney (HN) during the off-season.
SCB: During the off-season, how do you train? Take us through a daily work-out.
HN: During the off season, our main priority is miles. It's important to be aerobically fit before you start any anaerobic work, so during the summer we really focus on building a strong base to build off of. A daily workout for me, individually, would require a longer run in the morning, and then an afternoon "shakeout." Running twice a day is easier on your body, and gives you more time to recover before your next run.
SCB: Where is your favorite place to run?
HN: I have been training in Portland this summer and by far my favorite place to run is the Wildwood Trail, which runs 30 miles through the city of Portland. Really, running any part of the trail is nice. It is completely shaded, and you can really pick exactly what terrain you want to run on. There are parts with lots of hills and other parts are completely flat.
SCB: The 2012 London Olympics is all about track and field right now. Who do you enjoy watching the most and why?
HN: Being from Portland, it is nearly impossible not to love Galen Rupp. He recently won silver in the 10,000M behind his training partner, Mo Farah from Great Britain. He is one of the toughest competitors, and he is an absolutely amazing racer. It has been so cool to see how much he has improved and developed as a runner over the years. He has become a legend for our state and for our country.
SCB: During a long race, how do you stay focused and make sure your mind doesn't wander off? Or if it does, what do you think about?
HN: My mind definitely wanders! When I start to think about how this is the most horrible thing I could be doing, I try to focus on the advice that Felipe and my coaches have given me before the race. Their advice helps me target exactly what I need to do during every stage of the race. Being able to focus for the whole 6,000 meters is something that separates the good runners from the great runners. I'm not quite there yet.
SCB: What keeps you motivated and energized to run such long distances?
HN: What keeps me motivated is knowing that I have to do everything I can for me team to succeed. Cross country is mistakenly thought about as an individual sport, but the biggest competitions we run are completely team-oriented. If you are doing everything you can for your team, you will also succeed on an individual level. So during these long races, I'm always trying to think about what moves I can make to move my team up a spot.