Junior middle distance runner Mary Cate Quiett gives DePaul fans an inside look into the Blue Demon track and field program. Follow Quiett's experience at the 2010 USA Indoor Track & Field Championship.
Hello Blue Demon fans! There is so much to say about the whole experience of being at such prestigious meet! Here's the breakdown:
Behind the Scenes
Some people always ask if I do anything special to get ready for a meet or if I have any rituals. My answer is no. I had waffles, cereal and orange juice for breakfast and had a turkey sandwich for lunch. The only thing I would never eat the day of a race is eggs (but that's just me). I spent the morning working on homework at the hotel and coach Andrew Craycraft and I went for a 10 minute jog and stretched right before lunch.
The track was at the Albuquerque Convention Center. It was a great facility. We got there about an hour before I needed to warm up, so I had time to find the bathroom and check in. I felt pretty important because I got a pass to wear around my neck that said I was an athlete and it granted me access into places other people couldn't go. It wasn't until I got there and Coach started pointing out all the Olympians that I started to realize how awesome this opportunity was! I don't really follow the running world, so I didn't recognize anyone famous, but Coach was kind enough to point them out to me. I just can't believe that I am finally at a level where I can compete at the same meet as Olympians! Not that I really gave them a run for their money or anything, but I was still there. I was the only collegiate runner in the 800m, which means everyone I was running against was at least two years older than me. That can make a big difference. I was just glad to be there and have the experience.
The race was good. Coach Andy was much more nervous than I was. I was cool as a cucumber (seriously). I was in the third and final heat so I got to watch the two heats before me. I felt pretty important because each runner had a person with a basket who would follow you and hold your warmups. Swanky! Alright, so back to the race: The plan was to stay up in the front and get myself in a good position, but run calmly so I could conserve energy. I did just that. We went through the first 400m in 59 seconds (which is fast) but I kept my cool. I fell behind the leader after about 500m though. I didn't kick as soon as I wanted to, but all-in-all the race was a success and a fantastic experience.
Afterwards my head was POUNDING! I'm not used to the high elevation in Albuquerque, and my body did not react well. I felt better once I started jogging and got some fresh air during my cool down. After my jog, I took it easy and even treated myself with a massage! It was heavenly!
I really cannot thank my family, friends, and DePaul community enough! I received countless emails and words of encouragement and congratulations from you all and it really means the world to me. I am fully aware of what an amazing opportunity this was for me and for DePaul and I am so grateful to be surrounded by such a supportive network. Thank you so much for believing in me and helping me reach my goals!
See you at the finish line,
P.S. You can check out pictures from the trip by clicking on the photo album at the top of the page. We took advantage of our short time in Albuquerque by doing a little site seeing.