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What I did on my summer vacation: Joe Miller

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Joe Miller

The Blade/Andy Morrison
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WHAT HE DID: Miller saw his track season extend into mid-June when he competed in the Nike Outdoor Nationals in North Carolina. So he took a two-week break that included a backpacking trip in the Rocky Mountains. It was nice to get a little time off although at times the backpacking was tougher than any workout, Miller said. He started his cross country workouts in early July, running a little more each week to slowly build his mileage up to 45-50 miles per week. Miller said the emphasis of his July workouts was to build a distance base, with little to no speed work involved. He said he rarely attends summer running camps because he doesn t want to shock his body with a large number of miles or a sudden increase of intensity. When team practices at St. John s began in August Miller s mileage rose slightly, with speed work entering the picture. In practice we try to run with higher intensity, holding our top performances for a little longer, said Miller, who said he ran 58 miles last week.

HOW IT HELPED: Both of my coaches [Todd Black and Keith Madaras] are great coaches who know what they are doing. I trust the coaches and what they are doing. I m just going to do my best, and what will happen, will happen. I want to avoid injuries, try to stay healthy all season, and see what happens, Miller said.

OUTLOOK: Miller enters this season as one of the state s top returning runners, having shown steady improvement each season. He finished 26th at state in Division I as a freshman, then jumped to eighth as a sophomore before placing second last year. His time of 15:27 helped the Titans finish second at state a year ago. Miller also is the defending City League champion with a meet-record time of 15:27, helping St. John s win the last three City titles. He placed fourth as a freshman, then third as a sophomore before winning last year s meet. In track, Miller finished fifth last season at state in the 1600. Miller said he also spent part of his summer visiting prospective colleges but hasn t made any decisions yet. That s what the fall is all about, he said.

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