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Real Cross country part 2 This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

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My heart is racing and I try to keep a somewhat steady pace along the uneven ground.
"guuuurrrrgggglllee," i make a sickened face. I didn't eat anything this morning since I was in such a hurry. My fault really but its nothing I can't handle.

We are already on the circle going around the course. The course thins out to a point only one person can fit. I pump my frozen arms forward and almost knock the girl over who was ahead of me. I passed her but i don't acknowledge the small victory. Its time to push it harder.

I feel the incline of the hill start to deepen and I let out a smile. I always liked this part. I shoot down the hill feeling like the flash and cut the corner, sharply. I hear the muffled cheering through the wind whipping past my blood red ears.

Spectators wrapped in mounds of multiple hats, sweats, jackets, and scarves huddle together for warmth on the sidelines but make a point to clap for their teams.

The girl behind me is now only a few inches away from me, I can practically feel her breath on my neck.

"MOVE IT CLAIRE!" screams Laura, varsity.

She didn't even have to say it before I was back in my flash mode and pushing towards the wooded part of the race. Only a few people could be spotted on this part of the race and those were only the half mile timers and the people who pointed you in the right direction.

A girl bundled in what looked like a few UW sweatshirts pointed left. Heart starting to race I take the curve and Im on a rocky path. The scenery was actually very beautiful.

fresh frost covered everything in sight making it look like a pre-winter wonderland. This is what I liked about cross country, the places you go and even the people you meet. I met a girl named Cassidy from Dodge once during a benefit race at a lake it was her first year and we shared stories on our first races. One girl I met at my first race surprised me by helping me out and even encouraging me to keep going. Throughout that race we started almost gathering a group of girls who looked like they were running out of gas and kept them going. Thats whats separated this sport from anything I've ever been in. We help each other, even when we arn't on the same team.

I am pulled out of my daze when I hear a trickling sound. I look down to my right and almost go full-out-spazz when I see a fairly large river. I pull closer to the left to avoid falling in. Before the race Carrie told me about a girl who once fell in, she still hasn't heard the end of it. I mostly didn't want to fall in because I didn't want hypothermia and there's noooo way that girl was going to pass me!
I take a brief look behind me and see shes several yards away and just turning into the curve.
I let out a hagged laugh when I see her spazz out. Turning my attention back to the race ahead of my I see a clearing.

'finally!' i think forcing my arms to pump me forward. They were incredibly stiff making them feel as if the blood in them have frozen completely.

Clenching my teeth I push forward.

'400 meters... 325..... 152..... 100....'

"KICK CLAIRE!"

'in other words..... HALL A**!'

I don't even have to turn my head to know that it was my coach.

I push forward feeling pain shoot through my entire body.

I pass the finish line, all I want to do is collapse/ But instead I simply stop my watch and walk to my mom.



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