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Hillary’s Note — Whisper Running | Sport Psychology

As a runner myself since I was a young child I’ve been through my fair share of injuries, nutrition issues, and read countless articles on the importance of sleep, rest days, benefits of interval training, etc, etc. I spent a couple weeks thinking which of these topics would be impactful and beneficial to this group of runners. Then when I was on my morning run it came to me. I had just spent the past two days at the GSHL 3A and 4A district meet and was overwhelmed by what I saw. Fantastic performances by all the kids, personal records being set, and the culmination of a season of training coming together. And while their performances were impressive the thing that struck me the most was the sense of camaraderie. I saw kids from each different school cheering on their Whisper friends from other teams, working together during races with high fives and hugs at the finish line. I saw no less than 15 Whisper boys from 8 different high schools running back and forth on the field during the girl’s 4x400m race to cheer on the girls. This is what Whisper is about. Yes, you all come to Whisper to train, to improve your times, and to gain knowledge on the sport you have chosen, but while doing this you are also making lifelong friends who will be there to support you through your running career and beyond.

I know Coach Dave has spoken about the importance of the weekend runs as a way to build endurance and start adding mileage to your training plan. The weekend run can be so much more when you find a group of your Whisper buddies to join you. There is a group of girls who, for the past few years, have prioritized their Saturday mornings to do a long run together. These girls attend multiple different schools and live in various areas of our county, but every Saturday they congregate at a location and take off for their run. They return chatting happily and all seem to be exhilarated by the chance to decompress and talk with their running buddies. Many times they finish at a coffee shop or donut shop (everything is better with a treat at the end!). Watching these girls bond, mature, and grow together as runners and people has been the highlight of what I have seen from Whisper. Now that they are in high school it is challenging but in the off-seasons they still get together and have that time to build each other up. I encourage all of you to find this group. Coach Dave and I are more than willing to help you find a group that will be a good fit. And we know running is hard and sometimes you just don’t want to do it, but with your Whisper team of buddies cheering you on, you’ll know there will always be someone there to support you.

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