Run for the Demons |

Run for the Demons

Mike Schneiter
Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Mike Schneiter

Never having thought about running, I was both surprised and honored when my 11th-grade woodshop teacher approached me, telling me I should join the cross country team.

As a farm boy in Iowa, my experience with school sports had mostly been limited to basketball because that was the season when there was the least amount of work to be done on the family farm.

My mother was skeptical about my involvement in running and refused to buy me shoes. Hence, I spent the first week of practice running in old basketball shoes.

I was quickly hooked and I feel incredibly indebted to Mr. Novak for prompting me to try my hand at running. I haven’t stopped since and I can’t imagine not having running both now and in my future.

Participating in cross country and track in high school and college helped instill in me confidence and resolve to tackle the many challenges in life. That confidence didn’t come from any individual or team achievement, but from the things I learned every day in practice from my coaches, teammates, friends and mentors.

Today, as a coach at Glenwood Springs High School, I think about my past and strive to weave it into the fabric of our team life. Our cross country program has more than tripled in size in the seven years I have been coaching, and we have seen more than 60 athletes each of the last two years.

This Saturday, the GSHS cross country team is excited to offer the second annual Red Mountain Trail Race on the Wulfsohn Mountain Park trails adjacent to the Glenwood Springs Community Center. Start time is 9 a.m. with registration beginning at 8 a.m. The cost is $15 or $25 with a Glenwood cross country T-shirt.

Racers have two courses to choose from: the full four-mile course with approximately 750 feet of elevation gain or the “short” course which is between 2.5 and three miles.

In addition to overall and age-group awards, the four-mile course earns racers points towards our overall race series competition. The “short” course is great for people looking for a little less running or for a good walk/hike to support the team. We have some great prizes from Brooks for our top racers and our athletes are excited to cheer everyone on.

The second race in the series is the Glenwood XC race on Sept. 29 at 8:15 a.m. at the Colorado Mountain College-Spring Valley campus soccer fields. The final race is the Demon 5K on Wednesday, Oct. 10, at 5:30 p.m. in the fields across the street from the GSHS football field.

Registration begins one hour before each race. Contact me at 384-5595 or if you have any questions.

Also, for spectators and fans of running, a high school scrimmage race with teams from Glenwood and Rifle will be run on the “short” course at 8 a.m.

Thank you to all of our supporters and hope to see you on Saturday!

Mike Schneiter is a Glenwood Springs High School teacher and coach, owner of Glenwood Climbing Guides and is a Brooks Inspire Daily athlete.

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