Max Maydanchik joined our team during the track season of his Sophomore year. He showed some promise in the 400 and 800, but did not seem to enjoy much success, yet, at the longer distance. However, he joined Cross Country the next fall and consequently has seen his endurance improve dramatically. Last year in track, he was one of 19 team members to run under 10:30 for 3200. Alumni looking at our initial training groups might be surprised to see his name in the ‘red group’ but he has certainly earned the position after an outstanding summer of training.
In his remarks, Max began by directing his comments to the left side of the room, where, by tradition, the underclassmen generally sit. He told the gathered freshman that they already “part of something I wish I would have been a part of freshman and sophomore year.” He admitted that he hesitated to come out because he was scared – afraid of how much discomfort serious training brings with it. He recalled a moment during his Sophomore track season when he left practice early, trying to be unassuming In the locker room, he saw then-senior Cole Justus who asked “Did the coaches scare you?” Max said it wasn’t so much the coaches, but the running itself. He stated, (and I must agree), “the hardest part of running is running.” But he assured his teammates no matter how hard it is, he now knows it is well worth it.
Alex told his teammates that, as a four year member of HCXC, he felt he’d developed a true appreciation for what makes the team unique – the culture of bringing everyone together. He pointed out that for most teams at Hinsdale Central, the freshman and sophomores train separately from the varsity. To illustrate how XC is difference, Alex pointed back to a track race from his freshman year. It was his first race back from a leg injury that had sidelined him for a few months, and took place in our fieldhouse. What Alex remembered most of that race was how loud it was – how around every turn he had ALL his teammates, younger and older, yelling and rooting for him. He ended with a pledge that as a member of the senior class, he would strive to be as welcoming to the current freshman as they were to him.