Dustin Horter led from start to finish to top an accomplished field of 1600m runners.
It was about a 55 degree day in Akron. I woke up and ate my traditional two eggs and two pieces of toast before heading to Akron's indoor facility. It is one of my favorite tracks to run at every indoor season because it always provides good competition and a great atmosphere. My family and I arrived at the track and were soon met by my coach, Adam Thomas. My coach and I warmed up 1.5 miles together, stretched and did drills. I did my strides on the track while the girls ran the 1600m, and I was feeling ready.
The gun went off and I immediately jumped to the front. The plan was to go out quick in around a 60-61 first 400m and see who followed. Nobody ended up going out that fast, so things fell in my favor. I was able to keep the pace and splits right on with my original plan coming through the 800m in a 2:05 (64 second 400). The goal from there was to try to maintain the lead I had. I heard the announcer say that the gap was closing, which absolutely terrified me because it wouldn't be the first time I've been outkicked in a state meet! Regardless, my adrenaline was pumping and I ran another 64 second split. From there it was about challenging myself to get as close to 4:10 as possible. I saw 3:09 on the clock at the 1200 and I was prepared to kick. My coach screamed at me that the gap was closing and that only helped me even more to make up my mind. I brought out the old track "sprinting" form with the open hands for the last 150 or so meters (the type of form Coach Thomas made fun of me for on my first day of XC practice). It helped to open up my stride and the cheers of the crowd brought me home. At this point, I had no clue where they were in relation to me, as I was just concerned about making it to the line. Once I made it, I was relieved. At the line, I met up with Andre Bollam-Godbott and C.J. Ambrosio and we talked about our upcoming track events. It's always nice to have friendly competition, who share similar values and goals.
Lakota East High School's Dustin Horter dictated the pace early in the 1600m race.
Not too long after awards, my coach and I headed out to run a 4.5-mile cool-down in awesome weather that God provided us with. The Akron bike trail is a must run for distance runners. It was fun to run with my coach and discuss and laugh about what's coming up next. I'm still not satisfied, but I also realize that I haven't trained all out yet and I'm really looking forward to this outdoor season (and NBN) in that regard. Overall, it was a good day, but it's time to move on and go back to work.
Dustin Horter has big goals for the 2017 Ohio outdoor season.