TCHS Rampage

Temple City High School


September 5, 2017

Lai keeps her diet on track

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While running long distances on rugged terrain, cross country runners deal with both mental and physical challenges as they brace themselves for the coming season. For Senior Melissa Lai, watching her diet and workout regimens have been at the top of her mind as she pushes to overcome challenges.
“As the season progresses and our workouts get harder, I try to minimize the junk food I eat,” Lai said. “So I eat salads everyday for lunch and snacks like granola bars, vegetable chips and wheat thins to keep my energy up between meals.”
By following a strict diet, Lai is able to keep track of her body regularly. She has noticed how minor changes have led to negative outcomes. Lai had skipped her routine once, and she quickly became exhausted during practice.
In an effort to make the best of her last season, Lai is straying away from unhealthy food options and structuring her day to accommodate her eating habits.
Along with paying attention to her daily intake, Lai follows a normal weekly practice schedule with her team. She has learned useful tactics such as pacing herself when starting speed workouts, so she does not end up burning out too quickly. Since she had two injuries prior to this season, Lai has become more sensitive of her workout patterns.
“After experiencing the injuries, I have increased body awareness,” Lai said. “I can therefore tell when I’m overworking one muscle group in favor of another, and I’m usually able to correct it.”
Lai has noticed the positive impact of her routine, for it has increased her health and endurance. While it was difficult for her to adjust at first, she has adapted to schedule by altering it to fit her needs.
“It’s difficult enough to just run as it is, so I try my best to make sure that my body is ready to accomplish whatever I set my mind to,” Lai said. “If you fall off the health train, get back on it as soon as possible, because the longer you put it off, the harder it becomes.”

About the Author

Michelle Huynh


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