Spotlight Athlete: Alex Kay - Ocala Vanguard High School

Alex Kay's sophomore cross country season was plagued by injury. After qualifying for state on the track this spring, he's fully healthy, and at a new school. Learn more about the Vanguard transfer in our Spotlight Athlete feature.

How long have you been running and how did you get started?

I started track season of my freshman year competitively, my dad was a college runner and I knew i was always fast growing up.

Do you remember your first real race?

It was an 800 at Lake Brantley High School and was the first rubber track I ever ran on believe it or not.

How was your summer training?

I just transferred to Vanguard and I've never been at this high intensity of training with great coaches and teammates to work with everyday.

What was your 2016 XC season like?

I actually had knee surgery which kept me out of the entire season after summer training.

What's your typical training week like?

Mon: Mile Repeats(4-6)
Tue: 45 minutes (5-7miles)
Wed: Fartlek (time changes week by week)
Thurs: 60 minutes (6-8miles)
Fri: Long run 90 minutes (11-13miles)
Sat: Off
Sun: 60 minutes (7-9miles)

I also do lifting and core work 6-7 days a week.

Do you have a favorite workout?

Mile Repeats for cross country because it gives me an indicator where my fitness is at and is the most competitive workout of the week.

Which meets will you be running this year?

We are opening our season with the Spikes and Spurs Classic. 9/9 we host the Florida Horse Park race in our hometown and on  9/23 we head to Georgia for the "Wingfoot Classic" and then we have a couple of other meets around Florida before the state series.

Out of all of your running accomplishments so far, which stands out the most?

I had an injury plagued sophomore year all around; so I'd say when I qualified for the track state championship in the 800 as a freshman running 1:56 and finishing as the state's fastest freshman 800m runner.

What are your goals for the upcoming cross country season?

I want to go under 16 minutes and get a good base for the spring track season.

What do you love most about running?

Anyone can run no matter how rich or how poor or if they are fast or have great endurance or both. It's all about who stays committed and who works the hardest. Those people will have the most success.

The Low Down 

Do you have a favorite quote?

"Somebody may beat me but they are going to have to bleed to do it." -Steve Prefontaine

Do you have any pre-race rituals or routines?

I find a quiet spot to go by myself, I run the race in my head, then I pray. 

What is your favorite food?

Steak and potatoes together.

What was the last movie you saw and what did you think of it?

Star Wars 3 for the 100th time. Best movie ever made.

What brand of shoes do you train/race in?

Nike Zoom Pegasus 33s are what I train in. Nike Zoom Victory XC spikes are what I race in.

What professional athlete would you like to meet most?

Mo Farah. He may be the hardest working athlete and most clutch athlete in all of sports right now.

What are somethings most people don't know about you?

Even though I am skinny and have a typical runners body, I can never have too much food. I could out eat anyone.

Lastly, if you were stranded on an island with three things what would they be?

I'd bring a hunting tool, a flashlight to help through the night and attract an airplane or boat, and a supply of water.