Name: Audrey Kelley
School: Ft. Zumwalt East
What was your most memorable race/moment?
My most memorable race was cross country sectionals my senior year. I wasn't supposed to, but somehow I managed to get 4th place and it finally really made me realize that having a good mentality and having fun are just as important as being fit when it comes to racing distance.
What was the funniest thing that happened during your running career?
It's impossible to pick just one thing, but with my senior year being my first year having a "distance squad" to run with, it was a lot of fun finding random things to do with them since they were new. On one of our runs we found HUGE stick (probably 15 feet maybe longer) and I thought it would be a great idea for us to carry it around on all of our runs. Everyone thought it was crazy, but the distance stick is now an official thing.
Who would you consider your biggest competition over your four years?
Jada O'donnell was and still is my biggest competition. Ever since my sophomore year we've always finished super close to each other and used each other in races all the time. And now we get to do the same in college!
What was your greatest accomplishment?
I think my greatest accomplishment was learning how to enjoy every bit of this sport. Without having fun, there's no way I would have been able to do all that I did.
If you could do it all over again what would you change about your running career in high school?
If I could do it all over again, I would make sure I ALWAYS stretched. I'd always get in trouble for not stretching and usually faced the consequences too.
What were the most difficult obstacles you had to overcome?
I had a really rough junior xc season, so my biggest obstacle was probably coming back from that. After only racing once early in the season, I was able to finally start seriously training again in November, only to get shin splints right before track season started. IT was a struggle, but I still managed to have a pretty good and fun track season.
What will you miss the most?
I'm going to miss all of the fun, random things that would always happen and I'll miss messing around with my friends all the time at practice (even when I wasn't supposed to).
What advice would you give to younger athletes?
Having fun and enjoying the sport is way more important than how fast or how much you run!
What kind of an impact has your coach had on you and your team?
My coaches are the ones that taught me how much joy this sport can bring and the importance of always being positive inside and outside of running. They motivate us to be the best we can be in every situation and just enjoy everything.
What are your college plans?
I'm running cross country and track at the University of Saint Mary while studying nursing!
Who would you like to say 'thank you' to?
I want to thank Coach P and Coach Lowery for just always putting up with me and helping me learn so much. I also want to thank my distance pals Emily Karr and Ashley for being the best distance squad anyone could ask for.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
Emily Karr is a star :)