No track slackers

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— When members of the Steamboat Springs track and field team approached coach Andy Reust about holding summer workout sessions, he wasn't about to say no.

But he didn't want to limit the workouts to just high school athletes, so for the remainder of the summer, any student who recently competed in track or field or plans on competing next year at either the middle school or high school levels is encouraged to be at the high school at 6 p.m. Wednesdays.

"It's very informal," Reust said. "It's not going to be a typical track practice. What we hope to accomplish is that people who want to get better on individual events can work on those things this summer instead of waiting until next February."

Hurdlers, jumpers, throwers, sprinters and even distance runners looking for some extra help are welcome to attend Wednesday's practices, beginning tonight with Big Ball Soccer.

"It's for all those kids to get out and start getting better," Reust said. Usually coaches are the instigators for off-season workouts, but not in this case. The increase in numbers and the popularity and benefits of track and field for all ages has athletes excited about continuing workouts.

"The kids decided to do it," Reust said. "They want to get better."

For middle school athletes, Reust said the focus will be on teaching them to start from blocks, how to pass batons in relays and the importance of weight training because many, especially distance runners, are hesitant to lift or are just unfamiliar in a weight room.

"We have to build hamstring strength," he said. "It's so important in running and neglected so much. Your hamstrings should be as strong as your quads."

For high school athletes, Reust plans on picking up where the season left off, so when next year rolls around, those athletes will already be ahead.

Reust said the invitation to attend the Track Day is extended to South Routt and Hayden as well. Reust also encourages former track and field athletes interested in helping out with coaching to attend the practices as well.

Anyone with questions can call Reust at 870-6259.

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