Being a rookie is one of the hardest things to overcome in sports. Experienced team members initially do not trust newcomers, not knowing what they are capable of. It is the rookie’s job to earn the veterans’ trust and respect, and only then can the rookie become a valuable member of the team. The way for rookies to earn high regard is to keep to themselves and perform at their best when they are called upon.
Freshman cross-country runner Emily Brock did just that with a great performance at the Connecticut College Invitational, earning her New Jersey Athletic Conference Women’s Cross Country Rookie of the Week honors. Brock ran a standout time of 23:37 in the 6K race, placing her 51st in a field of 244 competitors. Her new personal best helped the Roadrunners earn a ninth place finish in the race.
However, her inexperience leading up to the event made her performance at Connecticut College even more impressive. She ran a 6K for the first time on Sept. 28 at the Paul Short Invitational.
“This was only the second time I ever ran a 6K race,” Brock said.
Brock said significant preparation goes into running a 6K.
“Running a 6K is easy; racing it not so much. In order to prepare ourselves for the actual race, we have a certain mileage each week that we have to hit; I hit 40 miles a week,” she said. “Running this much mileage makes the race seem not as bad because a 6K practice run is an easy day. In order to prepare ourselves for the speed of the race, we have two to three workouts a week. Eating healthy, staying hydrated and getting a lot of rest is very essential also.”
Brock had a positive attitude going into the season and surprised herself with her immediate progress.
“Starting off the season, my goals were to simply do the best I could,” Brock said. “I wasn’t sure where I stood after having college training, but I proved to myself that I was a lot faster than I thought. I am very happy with where I stand now, but I would love to keep dropping my time.”
The Ramapo cross-country team is preparing for the NJAC Championships this weekend at Richard Stockton College, which is the Roadrunners’ biggest event of the season. They will look to outperform the likes of The College of New Jersey, Montclair State University, Rowan and other conference competitors.