MORTON, Ill. (WMBD) — The runs are long and lonely for Emma Skinner.
She’s putting in roughly 40 miles a week in empty parking lots and on the streets in her neighborhood. They are her training ground without her team right now.
“It’s been hard not seeing anyone or have anyone to motivate me or just have fun with,” Skinner said. “I’ve been trying to stay in touch but it’s hard.”
It’s hard for Skinner go through the spring without track. The Illinois High School Association spring sports season are on hold as the world fights the COVID-19 outbreak..
The sophomore is coming off a breakout cross country season. Skinner she finished sixth at the state cross country meet in November and was hoping to build off that momentum on the track this spring.
“After my cross country season, I felt like that helped me build for track season,” said Skinner. “I thought I would get to see that work pay off. If the season comes back on, I hope I can see that.”
The IHSA has indicated it could have a shortened spring sports season in May and June if government and health officials deem it safe to bring students back into schools soon. If there is a track and field season starting next month, it would likely be very short with runners competing at the state meet just weeks after the season would begin.
That is motivating Emma to stay on top of her conditioning.”
“It’s kinda weird to think about it, going streak into the postseason. But I think the training my coaches have been giving me to do by myself is going to help me,” Skinner said. “Obviously getting into that racing feel will be tough at first but I think I’ll jump right back in with those workouts.”
Those lonely runs may pay off, if Skinner does finally get reunited with teammates and can compete on a track that sits dormant.