The Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders

Sore Sports: Cross country runners injured ahead of district race

in ARS News/Cross Country/News/Showcase/Sports by

Injured Varsity and JV cross country runners work on sustainable strengthening in hopes of running the district race.

“I was out for about four weeks. And so I ran twice this past week and my third run of this whole season was this past weekend at the Cedar Creek meet in the two mile. The only pain I felt during the race was just due to me being out of shape. It was kind of encouraging though, because that’s something I can control and work on so that I will hopefully feeling my best by the district race,” said senior Rewon Shimray.

Shimray was barred from running after enduring an accident while playing frisbee with friends. One of Shimray’s friends barrel-rolled into her calf, causing her ankle to hyperextend backwards and leaving her wearing a boot for the next few weeks. However, while Shimray has been able to heal, other cross country runners have more chronic injuries.

“I’ve always had knee and chest problems since about eighth grade,” said sophomore and varsity runner, Yadira Iglesias. “In ninth grade, I felt set back by it quite a lot and I felt very frustrated with myself.”

Sophomore, Yadira Iglesias (left), shares a snack with fellow teammate and sophomore, Annika Lopez. Iglesias has had knee problems since eighth grade and has worn tape on her legs to help throughout past seasons. Photo by Rewon Shimray
Sophomore Yadira Iglesias (left) shares a snack with fellow teammate and sophomore Annika Lopez. Iglesias has had knee problems since eighth grade and has worn tape on her legs to help throughout past seasons. Photo by Rewon Shimray

Iglesias isn’t the only runner whose injuries started in eighth grade. Fellow runner, junior and junior varsity athlete, Cypress LeFebre, has also had a chronic injury since eighth grade.

“I have tendinitis in my knees which just means that tendons connected to my knees are swollen, so when I run or bend down, I often feel knee pain,” said LeFebre. “It’s also led me to run differently so I’ve been injured in different parts of my body that aren’t as easy to recover from. So for example it [tendinitis] has led to an injury in my ankle, my calves, and my hip.”

Although LeFebre has been able to run with tendinitis since she first showed symptoms in eighth grade, it continues to be something she struggles with despite visits to the physical trainer here at school.

“I do feel frustrated. I wish it would go away and I wish I knew exactly how to get rid of it,” said LeFebre.

Junior, Cypress LeFebre, talks to teammates before her junior varsity race. Although LeFebre has had tendinitis since eighth grade, it has never stopped her from running.
Junior Cypress LeFebre talks to teammates before her junior varsity race. Although LeFebre has had tendinitis since eighth grade, it has never stopped her from running. Photo by Rewon Shimray

Similarly, Shimray has felt herself limited by her injury not just in running, but also in everyday life.

“When I first hurt my ankle it was right before I went on a trip to San Francisco with my church and so I had to walk around San Francisco with a boot on which was really frustrating because I couldn’t run around and do all the things that my friends were doing,” said Shimray. “And then when I came back from the trip, I spent the last few weeks of my summer just sitting around so that when the school year started I would be all rested and ready to run. But when I still couldn’t run it was just really frustrating.”

Unlike Shimray, Iglesias’ chronic injury is something she’s had to learn to live with in order to continue running.

“I feel like it [the injury] is extra luggage I have to deal with, but I’ve gotten use to it. I know how to manage my knee pains on my own so that I can run everyday.”

LeFebre shared similar feelings on learning to live with tendinitis in her knees for the past three years.

“I am able to run with tendinitis since it’s not that severe. And I’ve had tendinitis since I started cross country—but it hasn’t stopped me.”

Shimray, whose injury has now healed, had her own words of advice for those going through a similar process.

“Try to find other productive things you can do while not moving around too much,” said Shimray.  “When I hurt my ankle I just kind of thought about all things that I couldn’t do. But I should have thought about what I could do instead of going out running. I can read that book I’ve always wanted to read, or work on that art piece I’ve always wanted to finish. Just make the best of the situation you have because there really isn’t anything you can do except wait for your injury to heal with time. And you might as well make the most out of that time.”

Meredith says if you give her a train ticket, a cup of tea, a camera, good literature, a friend, and a sprig of French lavender she'll be happy forever. Meredith is also a varsity swimmer and co-captain on the school’s swim team, a Model UN delegate, a student ambassador for the Young Women’s Preparatory Network (YWPN), a Girl Scout, and of course, a staff writer here at the Polaris Press.

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