Smith_ScottH-SanDiego16.jpgScott Smith, photo by

Cross country is both a team and individual sport. I was at the Nuttycombe Invitational two weeks ago, and it was a lot of fun. Watching the UW women and the Northern Arizona University men win the championship races was exciting. Both teams kept their top seven runners close and were able to pass people over the last third of the race.

Teams come together in workouts, both the tough ones and the easy ones. Today in your strideouts, consider the big races coming soon.

Monday, October 24, 2016: Monday: Warm up; 6-mile run; 8x150 yds relaxed strideouts on grass, jogging back to the start after each, no rest between; cool down.

Morris_160213_6919.jpgMeb Keflezighi, photo by Kevin Morris

Meb Keflezighi is a championship racer. If one looks at his career, one finds that he has had few bad races in major championship and big city races. His skill set has been honed through good and bad races. His wins in Boston, New York, and his medal in Athens, as well as 4th in London and his recent runs in London and Rio show a career that is both long and impressive.

David Hunter wrote this piece a few weeks ago on Meb, after he had the pleasure of spending a few days around the Akron Marathon with one of our favorite marathoners.

In our series on the HOKA ONE ONE Northern Arizona Elite, this is part 4 on athlete Scott Smith. Scott Smith is one of the handful of athletes under the watchful eye of Ben Rosario, as the NAZElite team focuses on races this fall and in the future. The video series was produced by The Shoe Addicts and shot by Tim Jeffreys.

Long runs are soul food for distance runners. Besides increasing the efficiency of your circulation, making you a more powerful mortal engine, long runs are great times to contemplate current life challenges. I enjoyed running long with friends, but also treasured the solitude of the long runs in the various seasons; from the changing of leaves in the fall, to the quiet cold of the winter, to the rain of the spring, and of course, heat of the summer.

Tully_Nicole-USOlyTr16.jpgNicole Tully, photo by

Just saw a state meet, I believe in South Dakota, won by an eighth grade girl! The quality and size of cross country continues to grow across the country! Good luck to all in invitationals, regionals and state meets coming up.

Just remember, consider adding the Postal 2 mile to the end of your season! Check out the attraction of postals at

This is the season of big races: big invitationals, conference meets, regionals and for some already, (like Alaska), state meets! Big races are the focus for many, yet the final events of the U.S. high school season (FootLocker, NXN, Border Clash, USATF Juniors, AAU) and college (NCAA) are four to eight weeks away!

Tully_NicoleQ-OlyTr16.jpgNicole Tully, photo by

Today, for most of the 515, 000 high school cross country runners is a race day. It's time to see where you are at. Under our training program, you are in week nine. For many (and we will have a summer program starting in June next year), it is week 21!

Warm up well today, race hard, do something different this week, perhaps accelerate longer as you reach the last 500-600 meters in your race. See what you can do! And good luck!

Saturday, October 22, 2016: Race day. Warm up, listen to your coach, race, cool down.

Ben Rosario is one of those coaches you listen to and like to ask questions. Ben is a creative thinker, who along with his wife, Jen, love what they do and think creatively about performance running and their athletes. They are the spirit behind the HOKA ONE ONE Northern Arizona Elite team. While the Northern Arizone Elite have been around a short time, their athletes are blazing a trail through track, cross country, road and train racing for the club and their sponsors. Here is part 8 of our HOKA ONE ONE Coaching Interview series, sponsored by

Justin Lagat has been writing for RunBlogRun for several years now. His weekly column provides our readers insights into running in Kenya. This column is a fun one, as Daniel Wanjiru surprised many with his win at the TCS Amsterdam marathon.

Wanjiru_DanielFV-PragueH15.jpgDaniel Wanjiru, photo by

Coaches, like teachers, do not get the respect that they deserve. The coaches who work with us, during our formative years, do much more than build athletes. They teach life lessons. Here is a new series that I am starting on how coaches change our lives.

Start-GreatXC04.jpgCross country start, photo by

For me, cross country was my introduction to running. I ran cross country for two years at DeSmet in the environs of Saint Louis, Missouri, and then, when my father was transfered by Ford Motor Company to California, ran at Bellarmine in San Jose, California.

Manzano_LeoH-USOlyTr16.jpgLeo Manzano, photo by

I remember racing in Forest Park in Saint Louis. The course was two miles (actually, I believe, 1.9 miles). In California, we raced at Crystal Springs in Belmont, California, and the course was 2.9 miles. I loved that course. The hills, the downhills, and crazy turns until you ran the last 300 meters to the finish.

Good luck in your races this week. Remember, challenge yourselves in the races! See what you can do, surprise yourself!

Friday, October 21, 2016: Warm up; 6-mile run; 8x150 yds relaxed strideouts on grass, jogging back to the start after each, no rest in between; cool down.

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