NCP Admin No Match for Track Team
By Kate Clemenz
Northside’s Track and Field team has certainly had its fair share of successes in its time. However, the NCP administration has decided that there have not been enough recent victories, and due to another round of budget cuts, they had to make the difficult decision to cut the track team.
Current members of the track team were understandably disappointed. However, thanks to a group of dedicated runners, team members have no reason to fear; former track members have decided to start their very own Running Club. Julia Carlson, Adv. 005, Norberto Nieves, Adv. 900, and Nora Hill, Adv. 202, have taken it upon themselves to start the new club at Northside. Most members of the disbanded track team have expressed interest in the Running Club, although founders warn that the practices will be grueling.
Carlson, Nieves, and Hill have extensive plans for the next few months. Although they are about halfway through a normal track season, the new club leaders plan on making their runners faster than they ever were under the leadership of their former coaches. Runners will meet at 5 a.m. everyday (including the weekends) for a long run before school. After school, practices will start at 3:15 p.m. sharp. Following the run, there will be workouts in the weight room to make sure the runners are as strong as they can possibly be. Missing practices is not just frowned upon -- it is forbidden. Missing one practice forces a meeting with the club leaders, in which they decide whether or not the runner should be allowed to stay in the club. Each day, the slowest person has to run an extra mile. The club members will also have carefully-planned diets to hopefully increase their speed. The club leaders know these rules are intense, but they stand by them. “The grind never ever stops,” said Carlson.
Although the Running Club is hardcore, many of the former track team members are on board. Fatima Peña, Adv. 006, said that “we end practice around 7 p.m. every day and shower in the swim locker rooms. It’s a fun bonding experience to all be running before the sun is out.” Joselyn Santos, Adv. 009, commented on the rules about missing practices. “The team wasn’t dedicated enough,” she said. “We won’t have anyone skipping practice.” For the most dedicated runners, the Running Club seems to be the perfect opportunity to improve both skills and stamina.
Not everyone is excited about the changes. Many former track members were upset by the disbanding of the Track & Field team, and a few refused to join the new club. Still, the majority of the members of the former Track & Field team seem committed to joining NCP’s new Running Club.
Although they are no longer able to compete as a Track & Field team at IHSA meets, the club has many ideas for Northside as a whole. Carlson said “We are hoping to take over the Senior Leaders program next year, so all current and incoming freshmen better get ready to be whipped into shape.” They are also working with the Physical Education Department to create a running unit in the hopes that the sport will become more popular at Northside. Carlson is also hopeful that being a member of the Running Club “will be the only way for students to get a P.E. waiver next year.” The club’s founders have lofty goals, but they hope to make a real impact on the school.
Northside’s newest club meets seven days a week at 5 a.m. and 3:15 p.m. New and old runners are welcome; just be sure not to miss practices. Hill said, “I have dedicated my whole life to running and my team is going to do the same.” Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are willing to do just that.