High School Cross Country practices officially begin tomorrow, and the programs at Pella Christian and Pella High are both looking to continue and build upon the successes of last season.
The key to a successful fall often lies in putting in work in the summer, a concept that Pella Christian cross country coach Jocelyn Meinders says many of her runners have figured out – sometimes the hard way.
“A lot of them – the returning ones especially – are pretty diligent about making sure they get their mileage in over the summer,” says Meinders. “They’ve learned from past years’ experience that it makes a huge difference if you get your running in over the summer and can just work on getting better and getting faster when the season’s here.”
Meinders says her squad will consist mostly of inexperienced – but eager – runners this fall, but says she always excited to welcome new runners to the program.
Just a short run away at Pella High School, head coach Doug Cutler is looking forward to working with some fresh faces as well – lots of them. Cutler expects a total of 110 to 120 boys and girls out for cross country this fall at Pella High School, and says he’s again implemented a laissez-faire coaching style this summer, allowing his athletes to adhere to their own summer workouts.
“I try not to be in the kids’ face very much in the summer. I’ll see them every once in a while; I know when they’re meeting, but it’s really on them,” says Cutler. “They know that to succeed at the level that we’d like to – at a championship level – they’re going to have to get in some mileage and build their base over the summer.”
The Pella Christian and Pella High Cross Country teams will both begin competition on the same day, as the Dutch will host the Pella Invitational on Saturday, September 3rd.