Week 1 Training Blog: Nicole and Samantha Humphries

* Flower Mound (TX) sisters Nicole and Samantha Humphries enter the 2022 cross country season as the top distance talent in Texas and the country.

Photo Credit: Chance Kirby/MileSplit Texas

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The dynamic sister duo Flower Mound (TX) of Nicole Humphries and Samantha Humphries enter their senior high school cross-country season as two of Texas’ top performers and ones to watch on the national stage. The sisters put in their best cross-country performances to date last season, with Nicole and Samantha clocking personal best 5k times of 17:39.30 and 17:39.98, respectively. They also competed in two rounds of the record-breaking National Indoor 4xmile team from Flower Mound which raced for a new American high school best of 19:37.78 at the New Balance Indoor Nationals. After such successful junior seasons, Nicole and Samantha are preparing for what awaits them this fall. We asked the Humphries sisters to document their training for the next four weeks as their senior cross country season begins to ramp up, and the first week is told through Nicole’s lens.

Week 1

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Week 1 (August 15 – 21)

* Week 1 is told in the words of Nicole.

Monday August 15 – 5 miles

I woke up at 6:15 a.m. and headed to practice at 7 a.m. I ran 5 miles at an easy pace with Sam. We call it a simple distance run, or an easy run: a run where we just do the miles. Then we did medicine ball drills. At school I had a pre-calculus quiz, then I came home and did my homework. After dinner, Sam and I went to weight training where we did lifting, strengthening, core and core exercises. I came home and ate a protein bar and went to bed.

Tuesday, August 16 – 6 miles

I woke up at 6:15 a.m. and ran to practice at 7 a.m. I felt really good during these; it was the fastest I had ever done, but it was still very fluid and controlled. This workout is my favorite workout, and I love doing reps with Sam because we pace each other. At school, we used to make s’mores during chemistry. After school I volunteered at an animal shelter, came home and took a nap, then did 30 minutes of cross training in the gym with medium effort. Then I made a banana-chocolate peanut butter smoothie, which is my favorite, and studied for my chemistry test before bed.

Wednesday August 17 – 5 miles

I woke up at 6:15am and ran again at 7am. I ran an easy 5 miles with my team for another distance run. It was really easy and helped me recover, but it was very hot and humid outside. After running, we did medicine ball drills and hurdle drills. In school, I had a chemistry test and a pre-calculus quiz that I was nervous about, but ended up being well prepared. I came home and did my pre-calculus homework and relaxed.

Thursday August 18 – 6 miles

I went to practice and finished my 2nd practice of the week. We did a fartlek in a grass park, which was 20 minutes of 1 minute walk, 1 minute rest at a 5k pace, plus a warm up and cool down. It was our first time running on grass this season and it was really good and it was nice to have a change of surface/scenery. Sam and I made a strong group with some of the guys on our team who really pushed me through this practice. After school I came home and worked out for 30 minutes before doing weight training. The days we have training sessions are our hardest efforts and the longest days, so I was really tired at the end, but it was a good day.

Friday August 19 – 4 miles

In training I did a super easy 4 mile run with my team. We were able to sleep in an extra 30 minutes today which was needed. It was a really fun race and it was nice to be able to recover after a long day. After the race, we did 6 strides. It was a stressful day at school because I had a quiz in every class, but I treated myself after school to shopping. I went to Ulta which is one of my favorite stores. Then I went to team dinner with the girls on my team. We ate spaghetti to fill up on carbs. The food was really good and it was a fun bonding experience. Then I went to bed and slept really well.

Saturday August 20 – 5 miles

It was race day. I slept in because the race wasn’t until 9:15 p.m., and it was really nice to be able to rest. Then I ran for 1 mile like a shakeout. I usually do this when we have night races because it gives me a chance to stretch and get my legs moving. I did some exercises afterwards. I made oatmeal for breakfast, then took a salt bath. Then I went to Jersey Mike’s for lunch with my mother. After that I did Normatech, took a nap and watched a movie to relax.

When it was time to get ready for the race, I braided my hair. I do this before every race because it helps me feel confident, which encourages me to perform at my best. I felt really good before heading to the track and warming up. My team competed in a 3200m track with other local teams. It’s something we’re doing to kick off the cross-country season before moving into 5k. I warmed up with my team and then ran where I ran in 10:35.65. Thinking back to the race, I wanted to run a bit faster, under 10:30, and be closer to my sister who ran in 10:24.07. Looking back, I feel like I zoned out a bit for the second mile and should have been able to finish stronger. However, it was a huge pr of 2 miles for me, about 20 seconds, and I’m very happy that it’s the very start of the season. Overall I felt really good and smooth, and it was really nice to compete again. I’m excited to keep working hard, competing and improving as the season progresses. Going forward, I want to work on my pre-race nerves and be more confident. I want to start dating my sister instead of staying out of fear. I’m really proud of my sister and I’m so grateful to have her. I am also proud of my team who work hard and do their best. After the race, we calmed down and went home.

Sunday August 21 – Cross Training/Rest

I slept in which was really nice after a long night. Then Sam and I headed to the gym where we trained together for 45 minutes. I like cross training because I listen to music and it helps me relieve stress. It also makes it easier when you have a friend to cheer you on. Today, cross-training has helped me recover after the race while building my fitness. Then I went grocery shopping with Sam, took a nap, finished some homework, and relaxed. I hung out with a friend which was a great way to end the weekend. Today’s easy day helped me recover, regroup and prepare for what next week has in store.

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Total mileage: 31 miles

This is the first of several workout blogs written by various athletes as the 2022 cross country season begins to pick up speed. Check out our training blog series page for more content.

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