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Interview with MC XC stand out Chayce Macknair

Making leaps and bounds as a cross country runner, Mifflin County runner Chayce Macknair showed that hardwork and dedication pays off finishing the PIAA Class AAA State meet with a 18th place finish and a time of 16:24. Recently, Macknair sat down and talked to editor Ken Varner.

HS: How did you get started in running?
CM: I went out in my 9th grade year for indoor track and had some success from there and I just kept at it and kept on going from there. It worked out.
HS: Is this something you do all year round of do you just do it seasonally?
CM: I work all year round. In the fall I do cross country and over the winter I run indoor track and in the spring I compete in outdoor track and field and in the summer is building up to cross country and doing stuff on my own.
HS: You’ve made quite an improvement from last year’s State finish to this year’s, did you change anything in your running style of your way of starting out?
CM: The Summer before this last performance I doubled my mileage from the previous summer. Just building up the base in the summertime. There’s a phrase that most cross country teams are started in July. Building base is important. I had a better base to start because that’s why you build your base this summer and then you work on your speed and sprints in the regular season. So I didn’t take my Summer as seriously in my sophomore year as I did in my junior year.
HS: When you go to big meets like that do you adapt your style accordingly? Do you go with the flow or do you at your own pace?
CM: When I go to a race, I check to see who’s in it. Usually I know a place I should get. They have rankings if I get like a 15th place I know that I to stay within the top seven or top 8 runners. If I’m ranked 20th, I try to go 10th and if I’m fifth I try to stay up in the top two or three.
I try to stay in a better range then where I’m supposed to be at and I always try to maintain that and then try not to fall in at the end and then I go from there.
HS: Early in the indoor season, is it true you set a record already?
CM: Yes, we went to the Kevin Dare meet and I set the junior record in the in the 3K So now So now I have the junior, sophomore and freshman record for that. So that’s pretty cool.
HS: which is harder to compete in, indoor or outdoor track?
CM: Indoor is definitely harder, simply because it’s mentally more fatiguing because you run twice as many laps the turns are harder. The air in the buildings are very dry. It’s harder to maintain the proper breathing pattern. In outdoor, it’s psychologically different.
HS: Do set goals for yourself going into the different seasons?
CM: Yes I do. Before cross country season was to get a State medal, which I achieved. In indoor track my goal is to qualify for the state meet. So I always set one before each season. Sometimes I achieve it sometimes I don’t, but I always go for it! And I’ll try to get it the next year if I didn’t get it this one. I set a couple so if I don’t get the one I will get the other so I’m not disappointed.
HS: So you are a lot like the mailman, your out in all kinds of weather?
CM: It’s been pretty cold lately, probably in the negative degree weather at -10 or -15 degree weather we have been only inside three times since winter track has started. So, we are outside most of the time. We did nine miles yesterday and today we did 5-4-3-2-1 posts. So we are out there going. It doesn’t matter what the weather is. It doesn’t really matter what the weather is unless it’s -20 or if the sidewalks are covered with snow. Because we won’t have a place to run so that’s the only time we stay in.
HS: What would you say your goals will be going into the outdoor season?
CM: My main goal is to get a state medal in outdoor. Because I made it there my first two years but I have not achieved to capture a medal in outdoor yet. My other goal is to break the school record in the 2-mile run this season. I was just .4 seconds from beating that time. I also think breaking record in the 1-mile run would be cool.
HS: Of all the tracks and venues you ran on, which would you say was the most difficult?
CM: I would say probably the Mid-Penn Championship. I think the Mid-Penn in track has 32 pretty solid teams. Each team’s put out their best one or two runners. There is always nationally ranked runners when you compete there. It’s one of the most dominating conferences in the Northeast. I think it’s an impressive fete to compete in a meet like that.

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