Elena Everest, who has always had a passion for running since she was a little kid, runs both cross country and does track and field. She has done both of these competitively for only her 3 high school years and came into the sports with no experience with them, but she fell in love with the sports immediately and has worked hard on her skills ever since her first practice. Not only has she exceeded above and beyond the competition, but she has managed to earn her spot on the varsity team for both track and field and cross country. She finds her inspiration in her teammates and lifting others up to the top with her. She has a goal of running competitively, whether that is track and field or cross country, but that is not her main priority, as she has bigger goals for her future.
COVID-19 has affected us all in major ways but hit talented student-athletes very hard as well. Everest talked about how “COVID-19 has moved our cross country season about 6 months later so our training schedule has been a bit off and we will no longer have an offseason between track and cross country. Our cross country team is significantly smaller this year because not everyone comes to practice and those that do are split into smaller groups. Training is harder than usual because of these different groups, so we don’t always have someone [at] our pace/speed to push us in our workouts.” She hopes that everything can go back to normal, and she can practice with her friends, teammates, and coaches all together instead of having to split people into groups like they are now.
Santa Barbara’s first cross country meet will be on February 27th. When asked if she was nervous about the upcoming meets, she replied, “I am a little nervous about the upcoming meets, but not as much as usual. There is less pressure this year because we are only going to have a few meets and we will only be competing against one team at a time.” COVID-19 messed up her whole season, and even if she can still run, it won’t be as exciting and compelling as in past years. She is still happy that she can run through. The only change that CIF has regulated due to COVID-19 for cross country runners is that they must keep a mask on if they are running close to other people, once the race gets going and people start to spread apart, they can pull their masks down.
Everest is not only an athletic machine, but she is also skilled with a pencil and paper. She finished her last semester with a 4.54-grade point average, as she took almost all AP classes and still had time to manage her practices and get her homework in on time. Everest is extremely excited to finally have a chance to run again, as it has been almost a year since the last competitive meet she had, which was in track and field last school year. She hopes that after the cross country season, she will be able to have a successful track season as well. We wish her a great rest of her school year and athletic career in the future.