XC Watchlist: Anne McKee - Kents Hill
Athlete Name: Anne McKee
School: Kents Hill
Year of Graduation: 2016
2014 State Meet Finish: NEPSTA D4 Champion
How long have you been running and how did you get started?
I have been running since the age of 7, but started running cross country and track in the 6th grade. Before cross country, the only fall sport offered at my school was soccer. Considering I was perpetually afraid of the ball and was a dreadfully slow sprinter, I decided to give running a shot. Both my parents ran cross country (my dad ran for Maranacook and was on two state championship teams in the 80s), and as did many of my other relatives.
Do you remember your first real race?
I do! The Old Hallowell Day 1 Mile Fun Run when I was 7 years old I believe. My mom ran with me and stopped me every hundred feet or so to make sure I rehydrated. I got a trophy, which was pretty much the coolest thing ever.
How is your summer training going?
My summer training has been going very well. I have been averaging between 50-55 miles with a 12-13 mile long run each week. Last week, I went to Green Mountain Running Camp at Kimball Union Academy, which was a phenomenal training experience. Never in my life had I seen that many gigantic hills in succession. It certainly was a rough week for my legs, but it was incredibly worth it, considering I now feel far stronger than I have ever felt. Running hills here is cake! Andrew Wheating (2 x Olympian) was also there for the week, so I got to run with him a few times--*fangirl hardcore.*
What is your favorite workout?
Long run days, or 400m repeats.
Which meets will you be running in this year?
In addition to regular season racing in the Maine prep school scene, I'll be competing in some regular season invitationals - Manchester Invitational (NH), Festival of Champions, and Brown Invitational (RI). In the postseason, I'm planning on heading to New England Division IV Prep Championships as well as New England Prep All-Star race. Also, I'll attend the Footlocker Northeast Regional the weekend after Thanksgiving.
Do you have a favorite course? What do you think is the toughest course in the state?
My favorite course is Belfast. Can never go wrong with flat and fast! The toughest course in the state is most definitely the course at Hebron Academy. It is filled with long, windy hills then at around 2 miles, there is an extremely steep 150m+ uphill dubbed "The Wall" (if that gives you any picture!). That course never fails to hand me my by-far slowest time of the year, and some pretty sore legs for the next couple of days.
Out of all your running accomplishments so far, which stands out the most?
I would say my state title in the 3200m my sophomore year. Three days before the race, I woke up with this unexplained pain in my foot, making running impossible and even walking cumbersome. On the day of the meet, although my foot felt marginally better, I still couldn't last running more than a couple minutes before having to stop. I had high hopes that maybe IcyHot would help, so I tried applying it and decided to race anyway, it being States and all. It was a disappointing race for me in the 1600m, where I mentally drained myself stressing about the race beforehand, and my foot still killed. Nevertheless, I felt the need to at least try to redeem myself in the 3200m. With my head clear, and confidence from the fact that I actually made it through the 1600m, I made a decisive move into first place with two laps to go and held out for the win. Although it wasn't a PR, the comeback felt like a true moment and I just remember feeling so indescribably happy.
What are your goals for the upcoming cross country season?
I want a redemption year. Last season, I missed much of September and part of October either out completely or on an elliptical because of a hip injury. It being my senior year, I want to focus on running each race like it's my last, whether it be a regular season meet or a championship. I'd love to dive deeper in the 18s and post top performances in some of the bigger meets.
What do you love most about running?
I love the freedom that comes with running. Going out for a run each day is an escape from hectic, everyday life. All that I have to worry about is putting one foot in front of another, and there is something really beautiful about that.
Finish the sentence Anne McKee is
Anne McKee is becoming extremely impatient while awaiting Kents Hill's late start of preseason.
Do you have a favorite quote?
"The best pace is suicide pace, and today looks like a good day to die." -Steve Prefontaine
Do you have any pre-race rituals or routines?
I always have a cup of black coffee about a half an hour before the race. Seriously, you all should try it, it's magnificent.
What is your favorite food?
Any kind of Indian food!
What was the last movie you saw and what did you think of it?
Forrest Gump. Classic!
What brand of shoes do you train/race in?
I switch off training in Mizuno Waverider and Nike Zoom Pegasus 32. I race in Saucony Shays.
What professional athlete would you like to meet the most?
I would love to meet Steve Prefontaine, in a somehow resurrected form I suppose. His racing is legendary.
What is something most people don't know about you?
My whole family is vegetarian/vegan!
Lastly, if you were stranded on an island with three things what would they be?
My violin, a good book, and my sister Kate.