Indoor track team competes in meet at Woodberry Forest

Senior+Jack+O%27Brien+competes+in+the+meet+at+Woodberry+Forest%2C+held+Dec.+15.
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Indoor track team competes in meet at Woodberry Forest

Senior Jack O'Brien competes in the meet at Woodberry Forest, held Dec. 15.

Senior Jack O'Brien competes in the meet at Woodberry Forest, held Dec. 15.

David Beck

Senior Jack O'Brien competes in the meet at Woodberry Forest, held Dec. 15.

David Beck

David Beck

Senior Jack O'Brien competes in the meet at Woodberry Forest, held Dec. 15.

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The HHS indoor track team competed at Woodberry Forest School, northeast of Charlottesville, held Dec. 15, 2017. This was the first actual indoor meet of the season even though there was a polar bear (outdoor) meet the previous week. While this was just a normal indoor track meet, Woodberry Forest is different than many others schools the competitors have seen, including senior athlete Carissa Roberts.

“One thing that is kind of odd is that [Woodberry Forest] is an all-boys school, so the girls bathroom is just the boys bathroom except they added tampons,” Roberts said.

The indoor track facility at Woodberry Forest includes a 200 meter track, half the length of an outdoor track. The tight spacing around the entire facility makes it so a person is always surrounded by other people. All of the HHS indoor track runners have different reasons why they run, but they all share the fact that they want to improve in their events.

Roberts competed in the 500 meter dash and the 4×400 meter relay. Although she was able to compete in these two events, she had to scratch (not participate in) her third event, the 300 meter dash, because of low blood pressure after the 500 meter dash.

“It’s really, really hot in this environment, so that doesn’t help my low blood pressure, and also it’s really stuffy because we are all breathing in a lot of oxygen and I feel kind of deprived,” Roberts said.

Roberts expressed her bitterness towards one of the events that she usually races in.

“I’m constantly improving my 500 because that’s my best event even though I hate it with all my heart. [I run it] because I am good at it,” Roberts said.

Roberts finished third overall in the 500 meter dash with a time of 1:29.87.

Freshman Conor Wells decided to compete in indoor track as a sport to improve his physical abilities in football.

“This is kind of my off-season sport. I’d like to get better at football. I think so far I’m improving in my speed and strength,” Wells said.

Even though adrenaline is a part of both football and indoor track, Wells admits that it scares him and sometimes affects his performance negatively.

Unlike Wells, senior Jack O’Brien runs not as an aid for another sport, but because it is what he knows and loves.  

“The 4×800 didn’t feel great. I didn’t have anyone to pace off of. The 1,000 actually felt really good. I wasn’t racing with people [near me] for most of the race, but I had a lot of adrenaline,” O’Brien said.

O’Brien placed third overall with a time of 3:10.62 in the 1,000 meters.

O’Brien enjoyed the experience at Woodberry.

“It was my first actual indoor meet. I liked running inside a building a lot more than running outside. It was also very close, compact and you were interacting with people all the time,” O’Brien said.

For later in the season, O’Brien has aspirations for times in his events.

“For the season in the 800, I’d like to be 2:15 or under. For the 1,000, I definitely want to break 3:00.”

The indoor track team will compete this week at Liberty University on Dec. 21.

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