Day 1- I arrived in San Diego around 11:00 am local time with a group of runners. We gathered our bags and boarded the buses to head to the hotel. When I arrived at the Hotel del Coronado, we got headshots taken for the race. After that, the afternoon was free until gear pickup and dinner. I decided to go ahead and get my run in so I met up with a few other runners, and we ran along a path right next to the beach. It was a pretty change of scenery and I was enjoying the warmth since it was snowing where I live. After the run, we had gear pick up which was a pretty cool experience for all the athletes! Each athlete went into the New Balance tent where there was a locker with their name. Inside was all the gear and shoes for the weekend. It felt like Christmas morning with all the gifts we were given. After gear pickup, we had dinner and then most runners went to bed or hung out for a little after.
Schadler's locker at FL Nats
Day 2- I woke up and went to breakfast with my roommate. Shortly after all the runners boarded the buses for Balboa Park. When we arrived, we had a brief walkthrough, talked with our coaches, and then we had time for a run. Afterward, we ate lunch and then had the afternoon to take it easy before the race. I hung out around the pool with my parents and some of the other runners. Later that evening we had a good pasta dinner with some opening remarks from the director. After dinner, everyone went to their rooms to get to bed early.
Day 3- The day of the race had a different feel. I could tell everyone was locked in and focused at breakfast. After breakfast, we boarded the buses with our team and set off again for the course. The whole experience leading up to the race was a such a neat experience because the atmosphere was unlike any other race I had been too. To my disappointment, the race didn't go as I had hoped. At the beginning of the race everyone was close and fighting for a position. Two runners went down right in front of me and I took a tough fall impacting my shoulder as I tried to jump over one of the runners who fell. I knew something was broke but I knew I still had a race to finish. I was in a lot of pain and was a little dazed at first. I briefly thought of walking off the course but all the hours of hard work and getting to this point made me see what I had left. I knew I had to finish the race. At the mile mark, I was very last. The Midwest team crushed it, and ended up winning the team championship as well as having the individual winner coming from our Region. I was able to finish 26th despite my shoulder injury. After the race everyone got time off to hangout and chill before the closing banquet.
Overview- When I came home from the trip, I went to the orthopedic doctor and found out I had broken my clavicle. I was really disappointed with the injury because I had higher hopes for the race. Despite the injury, my experience at Foot Locker Nationals was incredible! Foot Locker and New Balance really did an amazing job making the experience the best possible for each runner. I had such a great time meeting and racing the nations best runners as well as meeting some incredible pro athletes. Foot Locker Nationals was definitely the highlight of my high school Cross Country career and it was an amazing way to end my four year Cross Country journey.