This lady arrived in 1984 here in this small town, confident that she can become a world class runner and a competitor in the Olympics. With her greenish brown eyes, she has seen it all in a very short span of four years. She was able to bag sixth place when she competed in the 1988 Olympics held in Seoul Korea as she joined the 3,000 meter run. December came and this young world class athlete finally graduated. With her achievements and only at 23, this princess of American middle distance running also got herself a 3 year contract to endorse a popular shoe company.
But as of the moment, this girl from Delaware chose to stick to her roots. On her regular workouts, she courses the environs of the campus. Against her own finish line, this 110 pound, 5 foot 6 runner's feet could barely hit the ground. She becomes quite fidgety with the thought of fame especially when people chase her for her autograph. The humble lady says that she's just a normal person and it really bothers her when people treat her any other way.
Though truly normal, she is light years from being average. She is the very first world class athlete an Olympian hailing from her hometown. She is part of seven world record relay teams and also hands her hands on four American collegiate awards. She even paved the way for her team in school to capture 8 individual NCAA championship titles as well as 14 Big East championship wins. She has also bagged tons of major honors.
Now that collegiate competition is behind her, she and the school's track coach are carefully planning her running career. She has to adjust her mentalities to accommodate this big change. The sole way for people to truly grasp this is by going through it. She challenges herself to become a great runner and this is why she feels so much pressure. An overpowering qualm she has is on encountering injuries while she is still under contract, the three year one she signed with the famous shoe manufacturer. She has grown to be more nervous these days compared to her collegiate competition days because a lot more eyes are on her and expecting so much.
People are now asking if the local woman's track team would survive without her invaluable leadership. She asserts that they'll be fine for they are a wonderful team. All around her are pressures, responsibilities and notoriety and these make her value her privacy. Even her small family had to make some much needed adjustments and cope with the fact that they are now known as her parents and as her sister and brother. She proudly describes her parents as the right mix of supportive and laid back but not pushy.
One positive side to stardom is the company she keeps. She is very close friends with the best athletes in the world whom we all follow on TV. She does sound out names but not out of conceit but out of genuine affection toward these people whom she has common ties with. Such is an example upon returning from Hawaii last June, from the tour that reunited her with another runner, she shared that it was way back in the Olympics when she last saw him. She was happy being with him for those days and talk about their Olympics experiences and just have fun.
She admits that while time is generous to her, her list of things to do have not shortened one bit. More than focusing on her daily practice routines, she also organizes her schedules such as banquets, track meets, interviews or photo sessions and all that comes with being a public figure. On top of it all, this generous lady will share her time and abilities by being a volunteer assistant coach at their local school.
Making amends with the medical path she put on hold, she wants to volunteer in an area hospital. Being a volunteer will surely make her build the right choice on whether or not to pursue a medical career when her time as a professional runner is up. When asked if she has thought about what lies ahead of her, she shares that while she wants to have a great family of her own, these would have to wait for her priority right now is to become an established runner. She says that she will achieve her goals and wants first before these other things in life.
About Author / Additional Info: