Cross Country

Some questions came up regarding masks. The rules read, that even if you are outside, and a 6' distance can't be maintained, you need to "mask up". I did not write them, but we will enforce them.

Anytime your pod is not practicing on the weekend and you want to run-please send me your results virtually. It would be fun to see how many miles we accumulate over the course of the season.

Below I have tried to answer some the FAQ's I am getting from many of you......

Athletes will be practicing in pods of NO MORE than 25. Each pod will be assigned a coach-and a manager if one is available. There will be little movement from pod to pod throughout the duration of the season.

Temperatures will be a taken and a health screening will take place before every practice. If your athlete is hurt, or not feeling well, they are not to report to practice that day. If they "fail" the temperature check, they will be sent away from practice as well. No one will be allowed to "hang out" this year if they are not participating in practice.

There will be no busing this year in practice. There is no shuttle bus from K-W and crowding the entire team into a bus is dangerous, and foolish, at this point. All practices will be in Zumbrota.

Bus passenger numbers will be restricted. This will mean that more than one bus will be taken to meets if numbers hold where they have been the last 2 years.

Masks will need to be worn by athletes at meets or in practice when social distancing is not possible.

Masks for runners while they are running are optional. Coaches will be in either masks of gaiters.

There will be no chutes at meets-just a finish line to cross where the athlete will be handed a "place card". Athletes will have to get these place cards to the coaches or managers ASAP after a race. For all of you veterans of CC, this is a "throwback" to the time period before electronic scoring.

Each race is limited to 25 participants. This means that there may be several JV races over the course of one meet.

We will be running a conference schedule. This years schedule looks nothing like previous years. I will get that out as soon as it is finalized.

When an athlete is diagnosed with or exposed to COVID, you will be notified by a district official. At this point, that athlete's pod and coach will be done for 10 days. This is a continuously evolving situation-please stay tuned.

Once school starts and we move to the hybrid schedule, there will be NO 3:00PM shuttle from Mazeppa to Zumbrota. Athletes living in Mazeppa are in NO WAY allowed to ride the shuttle from the school in Mazeppa to Zumbrota with the elementary school students at the end of the school day There will be a shuttle back to Zumbrota at 6:00PM

Junior high students, or any other student without transportation on their "off day", do not have to report to practice on the days that they are not in school. A virtual distance run and reporting to me is fine. One the days that you are at school, I would like you in practice.


"Individually we can do good things, together we can do great things"

Updated 8/7 @ 5:00AM-Great work to all of those who competed in the challenge over the last month. I am very proud of your effort and the discipline that you demonstrated. We accumulated a grand total of 922.69 miles. Team totals are listed below:

The Rookies-203.53/181

Team ZMKWWK-199.01/181

Scrambled Legs-177.86/181

Team 407-350.29/407

Individual Mileage Clubs

80+ Mile Club-1 runner

60+ Mile Club-4 runners

50+ Mile Club-2 runners

40+ Mile Club-4 runners

30+ Mile Club-2 runners

I will be posting the agenda for the PAC meeting on this page in the next couple of days. I am tentatively planning on holding only one meeting in Zumbrota for parents from both Zumbrota-Mazeppa and Kenyon-Wanamingo during the week of August 10th. The site is to be determined later, but I am leaning towards an outdoor location.

The coaches and staff finished at 404.5 miles.

**Added 7/9-Below is a link to a great article in Runners World on strengthening your core with some "do's" and "don't's" in the process of building the muscles in you back, shoulders, and abs. The good news is you don't need equipment or a weight room to do these things.

Added: June 19th, 2020- If you are interested in running cross country this upcoming season, please contact Brad Smith at 651-565-2463 or

Added: June 20th, 2020-Click on the link below for simple exercises you can do to strengthen your hip flexors. This was a real issue last season, and in most cases it was a lack of strength. Again, these are very simple exercises and you can do them on your own.

Important-Added: June 23, 2020-Took this quote from an article I was reading about high school runners and summer training programs. Fits in great with what I have watched some of the best that I have coached do during the summer months...

"The number one thing high school runners can do during the summer is to get in the volume. It's not important to do intervals or repeats. You just want to get the mileage in."

"A coach should NOT have to coach your energy. Ever!

Your energy reveals your attitude & how badly you want something."

- Unknown

ZMKW Cross Country 2020

June, 2020

Hopefully this letter finds both you and your family doing well. I am sure that you have found living in the "new normal" challenging. Self-motivation, structure, and discipline are essential pieces of our everyday lives as many of the routines that we took for granted pre-pandemic are simply not possible, even dangerous, to revert to at present. I strongly believe that the challenges we face in life only make us better. In learning to be self-starters and maintaining a disciplined approach to life we will become better as both individual runners and as a team.

Due to circumstances, we will be doing things differently this summer. Much like distance learning, responsibility will be put back on you as both a leader and an athlete as we approach the 2020 season. Below is a list of things for you to keep in mind as the start of the season approaches.

  1. At this point, we WILL NOT be meeting face-to-face for any group runs this summer. This is way too risky as it is difficult to maintain prescribed social distancing rules when we run together. Should things change, I will post it on the cc website at
  2. I will be offering a team virtual challenge run that starts on July 6, 2020. This run will be completed on teams and information for this will be included on the backside of this letter. Individuals that turn in top mileage during the challenge will also be recognized.
  3. You need to check the cross country page at several times each week this summer as I will posting links to help you become a better runner. You will find information on stretching and strength building exercises that will help you to avoid injury during the season. All exercises can be done on your own and not in a gym or confined setting.
  4. Practice will begin on August 17, 2020 @ 8AM at the high school in Zumbrota.
  5. If you are going to be a sophomore this fall and you have not had a physical since 7th grade, you will need another one prior to the upcoming season. If you are not sure when your physical expires, you can call the high school offices in either Kenyon or Zumbrota. Please refer back to the cross country webpage at for dates and times as to when athletic physicals will be offered.
  6. Invest in a good pair of running shoes prior to the start of the season.
  7. There will be no practice on Labor Day, September 7.
  8. The practice schedule is as follows. Please note changes from previous seasons due to the early start of school at Z-M. Please adjust your work schedules accordingly.
  • August 17-21 8:00AM-10:00AM
  • August 24-27 3:30PM-5:30PM
  • August 28 8:00AM-10:00AM (Subject to change based on weather/shuttle)
  • August 31-Practice after school each night

If you have any questions, please contact me at 651-565-2463. This is a landline, so please don't text. You can also e-mail me at Again, I will post the dates for athletic physicals at the Zumbrota Clinic as soon as I get them on the cross country page at

"It's not the miles that you put in, it's what you put in the miles"


Added 6/2020

Whether in the classroom or as an athlete, possessing the following list of character skills are essential for success.

DRIVE: Desire to win or be successful; sets and maintains high goals for themselves in athletics; responds positively to competition. Desires to attain athletic excellence.

AGGRESSIVENESS: Believes one must be aggressive to win; will not allow others to push them around in competition.

DETERMINATION: Willingness to practice long and hard; often works out willingly by themselves; persevering, patient, and unrelenting in work habits. Works on skills until exhausted.

GUILT-PRONENESS: Accepts responsibility for own actions; accepts blame and criticism even when not deserved; willing to endure physical and mental discomfort.

LEADERSHIP: Enjoys the role of leader and may assume it spontaneously; attempts to influence or direct others in a postiive way.

SELF-CONFIDENCE: Have unfaltering confidence in themselves and their capacity to deal with things; handles unexpected situations well; speaks up appropriately for beliefs to coaches and players.

EMOTIONAL CONTROL: Tends to be emotionally stable and realistic about athletics; will rarely allow feelings to show and performance is not affected by them; not easily frustrated by bad breaks, calls or mistakes.

MENTAL TOUGHNESS: Accepts strong criticism without feeling hurt; can bounce back quickly from adversity; does not need excessive encouragement from the coach.

COACHABILITY: Receptive to coaches' advice; considers coaching important to becoming a good athlete; accepts the leadership and cooperates with authorities.

CONSCIENTIOUSNESS: Tends to be exacting in character, dominated by sense of duty; will not attempt to bend rules and regulations to suit own needs; places the good of the team above personal well being.

TRUST: Accepts people at face value, believes what the coaches and teammates say and does not look for ulterior motives behind their words or actions; tends to get along well with teammates.