Chelsea Morgan Poling

School:  Sylvania Southview
Hometown: Sylvania
Age: 18
PR's: 800 - 2:19
         1600 - 5:05
         3200 - 11:12
            5k - 18:58 (XC)
Major Achievements:  XC All-Ohio (2001); Academic All-Ohio; University of Michigan Student Athlete Award
OGXC:  You were able to move up this year from 7th at the Regional in the 1600 to 4th with a much faster time.  How did you get from being close last year to making it this year?

CP:  I would have to say that I trained a lot harder this winter than last.  Alison Tittle (a teammate of mine) and I ran five to six days a week all winter for around 40-45 minutes each day.  We started in late November, and just kept going.  My coach kept telling me all year that I could run close to five flat in the 1600, and I guess I didn't really believe him.  But he's right at lot more than I give him credit for.

OGXC:  Speaking of the 1600, why that event?  The 800 and the 3200 look a bit weaker to me this year and you've posted excellent times in them both?

CP:  Well, i think the main reason I competed in the 1600 was becasue my coach told me to.  He asked me which event I wanted to run coming into the post season and my reply was to put me in whichever one he felt I was best at.  I guess he felt the mile was it.  I think that I didn't have a chance to get out in the half.  With the times at regionals, there is no way.  Stephanie Willets ran a 2:15, and didn't get out.  That girl is one of the fastest girls I know.  And the two-mile is definitely not weak.  There are some really fast girls that ran at Amherst, including two twin sisters that run for Southview.  (Ed. note - Megan and Allison Tittle) 

OGXC:  Heading into the state meet, what are your goals?  Do you have a certain time and place in mind?

CP:  My main goal all year was to break the school record, which is five flat.  So I really, really want to run sub-five.  Place-wise, I think I'm shooting for top five. 

OGXC:  How do you expect the state track meet will differ mentally from the state cross-country meet?  Will you prepare differently?

CP:  For one, it will be much faster.  I'm going to have to get out a lot faster, and get myself in a good position.  I have a lot less time to make up ground in the 1600 meters than 5000.  Also, track is just a lot different than cross country.  You have a different mindset, and I think it's a lot more stressful.  I have never felt like I was going to throw up more than I have this year.  Lately, before every race, I thougth I was seriously going to puke.  My mouth started watering, and my stomach just kept turning.  A couple of times I had to walk away from people becasue I was afraid I was going to let it fly.  I think I will prepare just like normal, spaghetti the night before, and a banana on race day. 

OGXC:  What are your long-term goals?

CP:  I don't think I have any really long-term goals.  I plan on running at Ohio State for at least the next four years of my life, and I only plan on getting faster and working harder in Columbus.  As for when I get older, I'm not sure.  I haven't really decided if I'm going to run competitively.  My main goal is to enjoy running as long as possible, and to try and have fun with it. 

OGXC:  What is a typical week of training like for you?

CP:  I run six days a week.  Mondays are normally relatively easy, usually 40-45 minutes.  We normally do a longer workout on Tuesday.  For example, 18 min. warm-up, 5 min. hard, 2 min. easy, and do 3 of those, and then cool down for 15 min.  Wednesdays are usually around 40 minutes.  Thrusdays we do a shorter workout.  18 min warm-up, 60 sec. hard, 60 sec. easy, times 10, and then 15 min cool down.  We then run for about 35 min on Fridays.  Saturdays are either a race day, or a long run, like 60 min.  Sundays are my day off. 

OGXC:  What type of training did you do over the winter to prepare for track?

CP:  We ran about 6 days a week, averaging about 45-50 minutes a day.  Our coach threw in a couple steady runs a week, just to mix things up.  We had very good days over the winter.  Our pace was much faster than it was in the past, and I think we worked very hard to condition for the season. 

OGXC:  Southview appears to be building a strong program, what type of program does Southview use if you had to characterize it?

CP:  I would probably say high mileage.  We ran a lot of miles over the winter, and during the summer we try to build up our miles as well.  Matt Geha is a very good coach, and knows what he's doing.  He ran for Southview, and ran at Sienna Heights, and had a very successful career.  He defintely has the experience of training, and can relate to runners what they want or need.  I think if he keeps with it, his teams in the future will be very successful.

OGXC:  Who was the most influential person in your running career?  Who got you started in the sport?

CP:  Matt definitely has had a huge influence on my running.  When I moved here from St. Louis my sophomore year, I did not run nearly as much as they run here.  It was quite the change, training wise, but I think it helped tremendously.  If I didn't do the type of running that I do now, I would not be nearly as good.  My brother actually got me running.  He ran cross and track in high school and always encouraged me to do the same.  I always idolized my brother, and wanted to do whatever he did.  I'm glad I did.  Also, I will never forget a letter that I received from the high school cross country coach, Mr. Dee, in St. Louis, when I was in 8th grade.  He sent me a little summary of how the past season had gone, and wrote about what  XC was all about..  I just got the impression that he was very interested in me running, and he seemed like a great guy.  Those little things that coaches do are very important.

OGXC:  One for fun.  If you could go on a run with anyon ein the world, past or present, who would it be and WHY?

CP:  I already run with 2 of the coolest people in the whole world, Megan and Alison Tittle.  They make running enjoyable, and they always make me laugh.  I don't think anyone could really stack up  to those two.

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