State Track and Field Meet 2022 · 28 May 2022

Ah. It is a great feeling going back to the State Track and Field Meet.

There is nothing like a championship Track and Field (T&F) meet. Especially, the one for your own state. We are headed back to the state T&F meet after two years of not having one. Two years ago, we had two weeks of practice before being shut down. Last year, we had a shortened season with no championship or invitational meets. So going back to the state meet is like a breath of fresh air. Rare air at that.

Qualifying for any state’s meet is surely an arduous journey. Athletes need to be more than just prepared. They need to be near the top of their game. At least the top of their district in their chosen events. Not only that, they need to be better than most on a particular day. Championship meet day.

Doing well on that particular day is the key. History does not matter. What you did at least week’s meet does not matter. What you did at yesterday’s practice does not matter. All that matters is what you do on that particular day in that particular event. And that is just to qualify! Depending on where you are, you might have two or three meets like that. “Live to compete another day,” is what our head coach tells our athletes. Survive and move on, or hang up the spikes until next season. If next season is what is in store.

I do love coaching T&F. It is always special when athletes get personal records (PRs) during the season. It is even more special when they get one more chance to do so when they qualify for the state meet. Nobody gets PRs every meet, but everybody has that as their goal. Everybody wants to do better at the next meet. Especially, when that meets is the last meet of the season for everybody.

Speaking of last meets.

Many athletes train their whole high school careers to get to the state meet. Yet few make it more than one time. This year’s group of seniors have only had two chances to do so. Once as freshmen and now as seniors. I am sure they will relish their time. At least I hope they do. I hope that they savor every moment of this culminating weekend. Yes, I hope that all the athletes take some time to enjoy the fruits of their labor, but I hope the seniors breathe deeply of the rare air of the state meet. I hope that they understand that they accomplished a great feat getting to the state meet. And I hope that each one of them has one more great performance to give.

Coaching athletes who make it to the state meet is truly an honor and a blessing. I love going through the process of the season that it takes to get there. And I enjoy the weekend of those last high school performances. I love to see all the kids out there striving to do their best. I love to see the coaches coaxing the best from their athletes. I even love seeing the comforting hugs when things do not go quite as planned. For it is the relationships that make the state meet such a wonderful adventure. The relationships between athlete and athlete and between athlete and coach. Those relationships and the experience of going to state will be cherished by those who made it there. Regardless of the outcome.

Yes. Going back to the state track and field meet is truly a great feeling.

© 2022 Michael T. Miyoshi

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