The student online newsmagazine of SHS

The Journal Rewired

The student online newsmagazine of SHS

The Journal Rewired

The student online newsmagazine of SHS

The Journal Rewired

Junior Ashley Martinez and sophomore Elizabeth Cox warm up together before track practice. Martinez started running her freshman year. photo by Morgan Harmon

‘Relay’-ing on each other

Junior finds love in her sport through her teammates

When junior Ashley Martinez first stepped onto the bumpy hills as a new cross country runner, a wave of fear ran through her body. She was unaccustomed to distance running and the environment, leaving her shy and timid. 

Despite her rough beginnings, Martinez has managed to overcome these obstacles. Through countless conversations, cross-country meets or simply hanging out, she has created an inseparable bond with her teammates. 

“I was intimidated at first because I had just begun distance running and the idea of a one-mile warm-up was rather unnerving,” Martinez said. “But overtime, it became more enjoyable.”

In August of 2021, Martinez joined the team after cross country coach Carl Basey had asked her to after coaching her brother.

Cox and Martinez stretch together before practice. photo by Morgan Harmon

Being new to the team, she was short of any friendships or peers to guide her along the way.

“The other girls I was with had been running (together) since 6th grade so I felt really behind,” Martinez said.

But as the weeks passed by, Martinez began approaching her teammates and asking questions. As she continued stirring up conversations, she discovered how ‘responsive’ and ‘outgoing’ her teammates were. 

“We slowly grew that bond,” Martinez said. “I wouldn’t have to ask them many questions anymore … .”

Through these interactions, Martinez was able to meet and grow her friendships with girls on the team including sophomore Elizabeth Cox. 

Martinez explained that even while others enjoy talking while running together, she and Cox have developed a friendship where they are able to run even in silence. 

“You feel warm because you have this presence that’s running with you and that’s keeping you motivated,” Martinez said. 

On and off season, these girls participate in Winter conditioning and enjoy meeting up to eat together or doing fun activities, one being decorating pumpkins. 

Cox believes that having a strong foundation with these girls has not only made cross country more enjoyable, but it’s also sparked perseverance. 

“Being close to them and having them support me, it helps me during races and workouts,” Cox said.

Not only has the friendship amongst the teammates grown over the years, but Basey believes that Martinez has individually, as well.

“She has grown exponentially.” Basey said

Reflecting off of her freshman year, Basey has seen Martinez improve her running, but also become more outgoing as she encourages newcomers to run alongside her. 

“She’s gonna make a difference this year,” Basey said.

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About the Contributor
Lucy Len Dim
Lucy Len Dim, Features Reporter
Hi guys, I’m Lucy Len Dim! I’ve always loved being able to express ideas and feelings through writing, so I joined the Journal as a Feature reporter. I try to be involved and open myself up to new opportunities so I joined Drama Club and I serve as  the Sophomore Class President. After high school, I plan to study psychology and teaching alongside theater arts. But, I’d absolutely love to go on a mission trip where I can share my faith with others because I love kids and of course, traveling! I am in LOVE with Tennessee, rainforests, and beaches so I’d definitely love to head there for a trip. In my free time, I watch rom-coms and family shows with my brothers while eating endless bags of spicy chips. My favorite rom com is “10 Things I Hate About You” and my favorite family show is “Fuller House.” Speaking of family, playing volleyball with my cousins is my way of ending a perfect summer grill-out night. Nevertheless, I’m happiest with my girls. We support and help one another out while still living out our teenage girl lives! We love listening to Taylor Swift together! But even though I love being surrounded by people, I’m a complete germaphobe and clean freak. I hate bacteria, dirt, or just the risk of getting sick. So to sum it up, I love bright, unique energy and hope I can bring some to you through our feature stories!

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