Elijah Paige, Long Beach Cross Country is His Sport

Name: Elijah Paige, Long Beach

Personal bests: 5k 17:20, 3200m 10:40, 1600m 4:51, 800m 2:09

Academic interests: Science

Hobbies: Photography & Skim Boarding

Favorite quote: "Youth is something I never want to take for granted. I just want to smile and live life." -TTC

How did you get involved in the sport? My best friend Will asked me to join the team with him in 8th grade.

What is your favorite race and why? George County High 5k, it's a beautiful trail to run.

How do you look at being ranked as the top in the state in your event? I don't think much of it. It's nice to see all my hard work pay off though.

Do you have a specific motivation? Yes, being able to pay for college

What has been your biggest challenge in the sport? Beating myself 

What do you hope to achieve in the future? I hope I can be successful in whatever my career may be.

What do you hope to achieve the rest of the season and at State? I hope to break my personal records.

Walk us through a race for you (from pre-race until post-race). I actually eat a quarter pounder the night before each race It's kind of a ritual for me and I always drink plenty of water, during the race I don't think much about anything other than the finish line and when I'm running all I see is the next person I want to pass until I see the finish line. When my race is over I feel relieved but I actually sometimes still have some energy left over.

What goes through your mind? Nothing really, I try not to think about anything. I just run.

Do you play other sports? How does track help you with other sports and vice versa? I run Cross Country, and I use both Indoor/Outdoor track as conditioning.

How and when did you start training for track and field this season? I began with cross country practice in July and then ran constantly until we got a short break between cross country and indoor track.

What do you enjoy the most about your team? We know how to have fun and enjoy the sport.

What team goals does your team have? Make it to state in the 4x800m. 

What do you feel you have learned from your coaches, teammates and the sport? My coaches have taught me that practice does improve your skills, my teammates have taught me that even if we fall short we can always make a comeback if we stick together, and the sport has taught me that hard work does pay off.

What would like to see happen in the future in the sport? I'd like for my team and I to make it to state this year an for running to become just as popular and acknowledged as other sports.

If there is one thing in the world you could do, what would it be and why? Travel and take pictures. I feel like there is so much to see in the world, and taking pictures can show people these things if they aren't able to travel themselves.