Monday, October 18, 2010

Catching up with Piner HS runner, Luis Luna...

Today we chat with one of the top runners in California, Piner HS junior, Luis Luna. I still remember the first time I saw him race which was at the 2008 Crystal Springs Invitational.  I was at the 2 mile mark getting splits when this runner shot past me, leading the freshman race by a wide margin.  Luis finished that race in 15:58 (close to one of the fastest times for a freshman on the famed course) to establish himself as a runner to watch.  He qualified for the state cross country as a freshman and a sophomore.  He qualified for the state track and field meet last year finishing 3rd at the NCS MOC meet trailing only two sub 9:00 3200m. runners, Erik Olson and Reesey Byers.

1) How and when did you get your start in distance running?

I started running in seventh grade because the physical education teacher who was the XC coach wouldn't stop asking me to come out.  Looking back, I am glad that she introduced me to XC.  I also joined the team because some of my friends were participating as well.  I ran track in 7th grade but  didn't do XC.  In 8th grade, I ran xc and track.  Before XC, I played soccer.

2) What was the first race you remember that gave you an idea of how good you can be in either cross country and/or track and field?
The first race that gave me an idea of how good I could be was in 8th grade when i ran a 4:56 mile.  After that, I had to decide if I wanted to play soccer or run xc in high school and I ended up choosing XC.  I'm glad I did that.

3) What was the highlight of your freshman season in xc?
The highlight during my freshman XC season was when I went to the state meet and ran 16:26 to finish 73rd.

4) What about track and field?
i didn't get to run that many races during my freshman year during track because of a stress fracture.  My best race was at the NCS Redwood Empire where I ran 9:44 in the 3200 with basically no training.

5) What do you feel was your best xc race last year as a sophomore?
I think that the best race I had my sophomore year during XC was at NCS where I finished 2nd behind Erik Olson of Novato HS with a time of 15:08.

6) What about your best race on the track as a sophomore?
The best race during the past track season was at the NCS MOC where I ran 9:16 for the 3200, finishing 3rd behind Olson and Reesey Byers of Santa Rosa HS.

7) Who were the runners that you looked up to as a young runner in high school?

There were lots of runners that I looked up to when I first started in both sports.  I knew all their personal records hoped to beat them one day.  Some of the runners were Sterling Lockert of Petaluma HS, Rory McLeod and Reesey Byers of Santa Rosa HS and Erik Olson.

8) Tell us a little about your coach and how he has helped you develop as a person and runner.
Mr.Rosales is a great person and a great coach.  He is always there whenever I need his support.  He has helped me develop as a better runner by teaching me all he knows about distance running and by helping me recover through some injuries. He is always giving us a speeches that really motivate us.  During his time at Piners HS, he has built a great program.

9) What was your summer training like before this current season? What was the length of your longest run? Any workouts? What was the most miles you did during a single week?
The most miles this summer were between 45 to 50 miles per week.  We did lots of hill work outs.  My long runs were about 1 hour and 15 minutes. 

10) What is your favorite cross country course? Favorite invitational? Favorite competitor(s)? Favorite workout?
My favorite XC course is the Spring Lake course in Santa Rosa.  That's where we run our league finals. My favorite invitational is the Scott Bauhs Invitational because there is lake where you can go swimming after your race.  My favorite work out is mile repeats.

11) What races are you most looking forward to the rest of the season?
There are some races that I'm looking forward to this season.  The main one is the NBL finals, then NCS and finally state.

12) Anything else you would like to add.
I just want to thank everyone that supports Piner High School XC.

Thank you very much for your time Luis!  AJC


Anonymous said...

Luis is a class act! He blew away the competition at Scott Bauhs and then had plenty of time to talk with younger runners from other teams afterwords. Great kid!

Anonymous said...

He is a nice kid! I have a freshman who will definitely look up to him!

Anonymous said...

I used to compete against luis and he is the real deal, I just hope someone can get him to a good collegiate program.

cameron said...

saw him run the mile in 7th grade, raw as can be--didn't know to stop after 4 laps. way out in front; not tired.

the guy's a natural; evident from the beginning. wait until he starts running 8k-10k in college--some coach will be very happy.

he's got a long-race body; in ten years he could be a great marathoner.

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