ELISE THERRIEN

When did you join NTFC? What other favourite sports or activities do you regularly partake in? 

I joined NTFC in spring of 2019, so I only had one real season before the club. Before I joined, I had been a member of the NDSS cross-country and track and field teams since grade 8. I have also been dancing ballet and tap since I was five and played basketball until grade 9.

Which event(s) did you compete in? What were some of your goals/targets going into the outdoor season before it was scrapped? 

I was a mostly a sprinter, but I also love jumping and hurdling. My best events were triple jump and 400m hurdles. My goals for this season were to jump 11 meters in triple jump and to get a new PB in hurdles. I also wanted to see if I could run a whole hurdle race with good form, because last year I was only able to make it to about the 200m mark before my hurdling morphed into weird jumping reminiscent of an overweight rhinoceros with abnormally short legs. I guess we'll never know!

Is there an event that you secretly wish you had tried and why? *

I wish I had tried Race Walk. The athletes make it look easy but I know it's not so I have tried  in secret. If Shakira were here, she would confirm that my hips don't lie. I really feel as though I could have done very well, and provide some crowd entertainment.

Which annual track meet did you most look forward to? Recall a highlight. 

The track meet that I most looked forward to was the High School Championships. It was so fun to travel with the school team and also see all of my other friends from the club that were representing their respective schools. The environment was always so exciting and energizing, and I loved cheering on all the other athletes as much as I loved competing myself. And best of all, we got free t-shirts!

Rank and briefly describe your top 3 track memories. 

1. My first ever sprint hurdle race at North Islands in Nanaimo. There were two heats, but all the other competitors in my heat scratched and left me to race all by myself. It was pretty traumatizing, but it was really cool to have everybody watching and cheering me on. At least I won my heat!

2. Getting a Triple Jump PB at the first meet of the season last year, without any practice since the previous season!

3. I love a good hard workout. Any practice where my legs end up wobbly, my stomach feels queasy and I can't make it up the clubhouse stairs, that's a a great practice. Goingoing through all of that with my friends is something that I will miss very much. Track and field has some of my great memories that will not be soon forgotten.

Name a coach, athlete or mentor that had an impact on your track career so far. What would you like to say to them? 

Coach Wanda definitely had the biggest impact on my track career. When I started doing hurdles with her, she never laughed at my terrible form and always made me feel as though I was getting better. She makes practices enjoyable with jokes and laughs and is one of the nicest people I have ever met. Because of Wanda, my favourite track event is the most painful one and arguably the hardest race of all, but it's all worth it when I cross the finish line and she is standing right there to tell me that I did a great job. Thanks Wandy!

What are your plans next fall? 

In September, I will be studying at the University of Victoria in the Bachelor of Science program, majoring in Biology. My goal is to eventually become a microbiologist.

How do you see yourself involved in track and field in the future? 

I don't see myself involved in track and field in the near future, but it is definitely something that I would like to come back to later, as an event volunteer, coach, or mentor to pass along my experiences and give back to the track and field community.

How about some words of wisdom for up and coming young track + field athletes? *

Always put on sunscreen even if it's cloudy outside, because apparently the sun rays can go through the clouds (or something like that.) Also, make sure you have a really cool and intimidating routine before you get into blocks for a race - try slapping your legs,, jumping up and down, or doing a backflip into the blocks. This helps intimidate your opponents. In all seriousness, never be afraid to try anything new because you don't know what you'll love until you try it!