On the Fast Track: Karisa Nelson

From Her Coach:
Karisa has been a true pleasure to coach.  I have been coaching for the past eighteen years and Karisa is one of the most competitive athelets that I have ever coached.  She has an unblevibable work ethic along with a tremendous amount of talent.  She made her mind up this summer that she was going to win the state meet and she has trained like it everyday.  She was dissapointed after the race because we had come so close to winning the state championship which was our ultimate goal.

From Karisa:

How do you balance the demand of school and practice with being a normal teenager?
I get really busy with after school activities, including cross country. There are times I have to stay up late and times I have to wake up real early to finish my homework.

How do you get focused before practice? Race?
I don't do anything for practices. For races I try to go to bed early and try stay relaxed by reading.

Do you have any post season plans?
We have five kids in our family and we all run competitively, so I believe because of location we will do AAU nationals in Orlando. I have a twin sister and we will only have to run a 4k because of our age.

Summer mileage:
We travel a lot to see family, and every where we go we run 15 to 18 miles a week.

Weekly mileage:
I would say 18 to 25 miles a week during cross country. 12 to 15 off season.

Training shoes:
Brooks or Mizuno, I am not very particular at this time.  I am sure it will change as I get older.

I have to wear my blister socks and I can not eat candy before a race.

During the school year I am on the volleyball, basketball and softball team, in addition to cross country and track. I am also in the school band, it gets pretty busy at times, but running always comes first and my other coaches are very understanding about this. I also enjoy reading books and listening to music.

Favorite Television show?
I don't really have a favorite because we don't watch to much TV.

Goals for track:
I would like to do my mile in 5:10, The half mile in 2:25, The 2 mile in 11:30 and no injuries!

I feel very blessed to have so much support from my coaches and family. We have a small cross country girls team and of 7,2 are my sisters and myself.  My brother is a senior and he really pushed me this year. Coach Rob is always there for me and Coach Ash stills helps out even though he has retired, I really appreciate that.