The Strength and Team Building Sport: Cross-Country 

Varsity XC at the start of their home meet at McCarthy Field.

Adam Richins Photography

Varsity XC at the start of their home meet at McCarthy Field.

Senior co-captain Caroline Piorkowski ’22 at the home meet. (Adam Richins Photography)

Cross-country is a sport unlike any other. It makes you realize the strength inside you that you never knew you had. Cross-country works hard to build that strength, both physical and mental. Genevieve Nohrden ‘27 said: “I think it’s fun but it’s definitely a challenge. You can’t expect to win if you don’t persevere.” I feel that is such a short, yet outstanding way to describe cross country. 

It is different from other sports in the way that you need to find that place of strength when you do not want to take that next step, do not want to feel the pain of the hard beating of your heart in your chest, the feeling of your lungs trying to get you enough oxygen but not feeling like you can ever receive enough. Anna Hvidsten ‘23 also gave some great insight on the sport: “When I’m running, especially in the second half of the run, I find it very challenging.” I feel that every person can relate to that.  Some people turn to ask for the Lord’s help while running, but one way that any runner can get through those tough points when it takes all they have not to collapse right where they stand is to find someone to run with: a teammate. 

Cross-country truly builds that sense of a team working together and relying on each other for strength. The team cannot and will not be complete unless every person works to support one another and share their energy with the team. Our team captains and coaches have gone above and beyond in helping us recognize the importance of a team. 

Not only does cross-country build the relationship between team members, it also feels amazing when you finish a race. Anna Hvidsten put it very nicely saying: “The after-run feeling cannot be beat. It is one of the best stress-relievers that I’ve felt in my life.” And as everyone on the team can relate to a challenging second half, we also know that feeling of happiness when you finish a race. At the end of a run, you know and recognize that you pushed yourself through something really hard, and that is one of the most amazing feelings a person can experience. Cross-country is such an enriching experience where you come out smiling after every race.

Kate Ladino ‘25, Staff Writer