Although it’s his first year, freshman Blaine Reynolds has had tremendous success on the cross country team.
Reynolds, who began cross country when he was in sixth grade, likes running because it requires a combination of mental and physical strength.
“I like it ‘cause you really have to be with yourself and really just be in your zone and do everything by yourself,” he said.
Reynolds’ family has supported him throughout his career and motivated him to improve and do his best. His sister, Brianna, a 2016 graduate, introduced him to the sport.
“My sister did cross country, so I looked up to her for doing that, so I wanted to do it when I had the choice,” Reynolds said. “I kind of did what she did when I was younger, and then I really got into it and I just stuck with it.”
Reynolds has a competitive attitude, which he has gotten from playing alongside his sister, who competed on Aragon’s cross country, basketball and softball teams.
“My sister [and I] play basketball a lot together,” Reynolds said. “We’re very competitive, we’ll go full speed at each other and won’t let up.”
Reynolds’ competitive nature, as well as his speed, has brought him success this season. He placed first out of 114 runners at the Aragon Center meet on Oct. 18 at Crystal Springs, as well as first in the Lowell Invitational on Sept. 19 out of 244 runners, where he broke the Aragon record time at that course with a time of 12:25.
“I just usually work hard and try to pace everyone else and do my own thing,” he said.
Reynolds’ dedication has led to great improvements throughout the season. In his scrimmage against San Mateo on Sept. 5, he ran at a pace of 6:29 per mile, but by the end of the season, he averaged a 5:25 mile.
“I just did a lot of practice,” Reynolds said. “Working on speed and strength and stamina, it really helped me improve.”
Many of the runners — even older ones — look up to Reynolds, not only because of his speed, but because of his leadership.
“He serves as an inspirational figure,” said senior Stephen Yu. “He is one of the fastest on the team, and he basically leads us in off-campus runs and track workouts. Many other cross country runners strive to be like him, and I believe that his efforts significantly improves our team’s output.”
Despite his hard work, Reynolds finds it “nearly impossible” to maintain a healthier diet.
“I kind of still eat unhealthy. I probably shouldn’t,” he said.
Throughout the cross country season, Yu enjoyed Reynolds’ company when running.
“Blaine and I, we’re homies, we’re cross country homies,” he said. “We are running partners, so we basically run together for off-campus runs, we’re in the same group at track practices.”
When he’s not playing sports, Reynolds enjoys reading his favorite series, “Divergent,” as well as listening to country music.
Reynolds finished off his cross country season strong, placing first out of 137 runners in the frosh-soph division in the Peninsula Athletic League championships on Nov. 4.