Monday, June 06, 2011

Catching up with Davis HS runner, Trevor Halsted...

Today we chat with Davis HS runner Trevor Halsted (picture to the left courtesy of flickr) who had one of the most impressive distance performances at the just completed California state track and field meet.  Trevor finished 3rd in the deepest 3200m. race in CA state history running 8:51.96 (his previous pr was the 9:10.18 he ran at this year's Arcadia Invitational meet).  That followed his double victory in the 1600m. and 3200m. at the Sac-Joaquin Section meet.  Trevor will tell you about the rest of his career and what his plans for the future.

1)  How did you get your start with the cross country and/or track and field?

I ran cross country and track at my junior high, but I did not start running seriously until ninth grade cross country.

2)  What other sports have you played?
I have been on the swim team since I was six. I have been doing less swimming lately as I focus more on running, but I still swim regularly with the Davis Aquadarts swim team.

3)  Who were your mentors or runners you looked up to (could be teammates or runners from other schools) as you were first starting out in high school?
As a freshman, I was lucky to have great role models in Matt and Drew Petersen and Kenny Durrell.  Their leadership and camaraderie, along with that of other older teammates like Grayson Hough, Bob Riestenberg, and Corey Coates, made my first few years on the team a memorable experience.

4)  What workout or race first gave you the confidence that you could run with the best runners in your section and/or at the state meet?
As a sophomore, trying to keep up with Matt Petersen in practice and then making the state meet in the 3200 first helped me to believe that I could compete with the best runners in the section.  Then, coming back from injury this past fall and then trying to improve on my cross country performances this spring in track, I think that regaining consistency in my training and racing helped my confidence more than did any single workout in particular.

5)  From xc, what were some of your highlights during your hs career?  From your perspective, what are some of the keys to the success of the Davis xc team?
Winning the team title at Sections all four years was definitely a highlight, especially when the meet was close, as in 2007 with Jesuit and Sheldon.  Running on the team in 2009 when we placed 4th at States was memorable as well.
I think that our success over the past few years is due in large part to a strong tradition of leadership among the older runners, the day-to-day teamwork and competition of such a large team, our great coaches (Bill Gregg, Tracy Bennett, and Tim Groth), and the biggest and loudest group of fans in the section.

6)  Quick hitters:  favorite xc course?  favorite xc race?  favorite competitor(s)?  favorite team tradition?  favorite xc workout?
Favorite course: Willow Hills (Sac-Joaquin Section course)
Favorite race: The state meet has always been exciting because it is the culmination of a long season of training and racing.
Favorite competitors: It has been great racing with Chris Kigar, Benji Xie, Chriss Grimble, and especially teammate Brian De La Mora in the Sac-Joaquin Section all four years.
Team traditions: cross country camp in Soda Springs and pasta feeds before meets
Favorite workout: intervals in the greenbelt or at Lagoon Valley Park

7)  As best as you can remember, what were your prs on the track for 800, 1600, 3200 during 9th, 10th, 11th grade years?  What are they now?
Freshman: 2:17, 4:46, 10:06
Sophomore: 2:04, 4:29, 9:18
Junior: 2:00, 4:18, 9:16
Senior: 1:59, 4:14, 8:51

8)  What does a typical week look like for you during track season going from Monday through Sunday?  High weekly mileage?
Typically, we do threshold work, often inside a long run, on Monday. Tuesday is usually a steady state run day, occasionally along with speedwork. Unless we have a dual meet on Wednesday, we do a steady state run and then do an interval workout on the track on Thursday.  On the weekend, we usually have a race and/or a long run. Our schedule is basically the same for both track and cross country, but there is more variation in the spring because we have more meets.
Lately I have been running around 50 miles a week, which is less than last year. Last spring, I ran about 65 miles a week, but then I got a stress fracture in my tibia.  Since the injury, I have had to build up slowly, so I have not been able to reach last year’s mileage yet.

9)  Tell us a little about your coach Bill Gregg and what he has meant to your success in xc and track and field.
Bill is a great coach, to say the least, and I think my high school running experience would have been much different without him.  I completely trust the training and have always peaked very well at the end of the season, but I think Bill has helped my running in more ways than just training us well.  Bill’s message has always been the importance of appreciating the process and the team, and I think this has helped us to focus more on long-term improvement and has built great team unity as well.  Running with six other team members in races and over 100 runners at practice has been a memorable and fulfilling experience in large part because of Bill’s guidance.
For example, I was especially grateful for Bill’s coaching style this past fall. Coming back from my stress fracture was difficult because my leg was still bothering me some, and I was having trouble building up my mileage to the point where I could run regularly.  Throughout the process, Bill was calming and supportive, and his advice was crucial to a healthy and successful cross country season.  He never put pressure on me to take any risks with my leg even as the postseason approached, reminding me to consider the long-term benefits of being cautious.  At the same time, he encouraged me to believe that I could return to my pre-injury fitness.  After running injury free in the cross country season and continuing to improve in track, I am especially appreciative of Bill’s guidance.

10)  Where are you going to college and how much did running determine your college choice?
I will attend UC Davis next year, where I will study Biomedical Engineering.  While running was one of the factors that I considered in making my college choice, it was by no means the only one.  I think the team and the program are a great fit for me, and I am looking forward to representing the Aggies next year!

11)  What would be your advice for a young runner starting out in the sport of running with aspirations of competing at the state level?
Enjoy the experience.  I am grateful that I got to share four years of training and racing with such great teammates, and I know that, without them, I would not have had as much fun nor would I have improved as much.  Having to deal with a couple injuries helped me to appreciate how great it is just to be able to go out and run and how fun it is to race, so I think that enjoying the team and the process is essential.
Also, in terms of performance, be patient.  For me, increasing my training load gradually and focusing on long term goals even when I’m not running as well as I would like to be has been the difference between a frustrating end to my junior year due to injury and a senior track season in which I have accomplished most of my goals.

12) What was the plan going into the state meet and where you keying on any of the runners or just strictly trying to hit a certain pace.
In preparing for the state meet, I did a lot of pace work focusing on being ready to hold 67 second 400s.  I hoped the pack could pull me through the first part of the race at a good pace, but, besides that, I did not really have a particular place in mind.

13) You made a strong move with 2 laps to go. Was that the plan or was that something you decided as the race unfolded?
My strategy before the race was to stay with the front group of runners for as long as possible, and I didn’t really expect to be in a position to take the lead that late in the race.  However, when I came through the mile on pace and still felt good on the fifth lap, I was tempted to make a move on the sixth lap.  Bill wanted me to be patient, so I decided to stay back in the pack and move into a position where I could move up with 800 to go (which was still probably a little too early).  When I made my move, I did not anticipate pulling away from the pack; I was actually hoping some of the runners would respond to my surge immediately and retake the lead.  While I faded some after taking the lead in the seventh lap, I am still glad that I took the risk in surging that early.

14) Anything else you would like to add.
Thanks for covering high school cross country and track.  It is great to have such a valuable resource in Northern California.
Picture above courtesy of coach Bill Gregg

Thank you very much for your time Trevor!  AJC


Anonymous said...

Brave move at State and it is the kind of racing I love to see. You have to have heart and courage to go for it and that is exactly what he did. Smart kid, great athlete!

Good Interview!!!

mike said...

Here is his full XC career. Very impressive!

You can get the careers of *nearly* every other CA high school athlete by getting a free Guest Pass to XCStats.

Mike Sherwood

Anonymous said...

Indeed a very ballsy race, I was very impressed, way to rep NorCal.

Anonymous said...

Good interview, but you can never catch up with Trevor Halstead.

Albert Caruana said...

Good point. Thank god for email!

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