Undaunted by Pressure

Emily Clark, Copy Editor

The date was April 1, 2019: the first track meet of the season. Only one competitor would represent Immanuel Lutheran Christian Academy (ILCA). The pressure was on.

Meg Andresen is the youngest member of the ILCA track team and pressure has rarely been known to phase her on the start line. This is not her first time to compete. Andresen has enjoyed running for a very long time. Her coach, Carrie Ann Swaim, has good things to say about her performance.

“She has a love and a passion to run. That is what she enjoys doing. Last week we were talking about whether she should run over the weekend or not and I said ‘Yeah, probably, because we have a meet coming up,’ and she goes, ‘Oh good, running just makes me so happy and I can forget about everything else.’ And, you know, some kids come out and they are training because they want to get better at a different sport, but she comes out because she just wants to get better at running.”

Being the only elementary runner requires a substantial amount of passion and dedication. Swaim explains that track meets are very different with only one runner.

“We found out that it was very boring and there was a lot of time to kill in between her events. She really would love other kids to come and run with her so she has people to pal around with. But, it was interesting too, because then, you know, I was only focused on her so there was no worry about her missing her calls or anything like that. She didn’t have to warm up by herself because I was there. But it was really weird.”

Meg Andresen approaches the start line alongside numerous other determined competitors.

Andresen found herself alone on the start line twice on April 1, surrounded by bigger, older girls she had never met before. Still, the pressure could not begin to surpass her love for competition. It was the last event of the meet. Sweat dripped from the budding track star’s forehead as she conquered the last stretch of the 1600 meter run. For the second time that day, Andresen finished in 1st place with a new personal record. She proved herself a talented and dedicated representative of ILCA.