The Harbinger Online

Athletes Practice in the Off-Season

Zach Holbrook: Swimming

Ice packs on his body, and a muscle milk bottle in his hand, senior Zach Holbrook relaxes after a regular day. For him.

At 4:30 a.m., when most students at East are still asleep in their beds, Holbrook is starting his first practice of the day.

At 6:00 a.m., Holbrook has completed one session at the Roeland Park Aquatic Center. He then heads home to get ready for the rest of his day.

At 2:40 p.m., the last bell of the day rings in the halls of East. Holbrook has just over an hour before he has to be back at Roeland Park Aquatic Center for his second practice. This one is twice as long, from 4-7.

All throughout the year, Holbrook and 30 other swimmers on the Kansas City Blazers club swim team practice together in the senior group. Although he is a swimmer, Holbrook and the team don’t always work out in the pool.

“We run a lot for cardio,” said Holbrook, “As it gets colder we stop running, and then we hit the weight room for strength training and we do medicine balls over our heads while we tread water,” said Holbrook.

When Holbrook lifts weights, he focuses on overall strength, not for bulking muscle.

This winter, Holbrook will be competing in his last swim season at East, and wants to finish out with a state title.

 

Lucas Jones: Basketball

At the beginning of September when fall sports were just getting started up, Lucas Jones and the other East basketball players were already getting ready for the winter season.

Jones has been going to weights and conditioning, a program run by Varsity basketball coach Shawn Hair. The program is four days a week and started over two months ago.

Jones and the rest of the team start their conditioning right after school in the weight room or on the track, depending on the day. Jones and the team usually lift, however they have different routines each day.

“Tuesdays and Thursdays we do lower body and upper body,” said Jones. “And then Mondays are speed and agility, so it’s less weight.”

Over the summer, Hair and four other coaches hosted a similar weights and conditioning program. Jones would arrive at East Monday through Thursday before 9:30 a.m., when the one hour weights and conditioning started.

Whether Jones is benching, squatting or running, he is preparing his body for the upcoming season.

 

Jack Carter: Wrestling

Some winter athletes prepare for their season during the fall by swimming, lifting weights or running. However, sophomore Jack Carter plays on the JV football team. The daily practices  help keep Jack in shape for the upcoming wrestling season.

When not in the football season, Carter will go to the weight room, or try to make it to open mat where the guys on the team come in and wrestle each other for practice. He comes when he can. This is more towards the start of the wrestling season, and over the summer.

“[I lift with] who ever goes to the weight room after school to lift,” said Carter.

Over the summer, Carter gets up early and arrives at East for a two hour weights and condition session with the football team. Carter tries to lift as much as he can, which is almost every day. After he’s done lifting and practicing with the football team, Carter waits at East until open mat starts at around 11:00 a.m.. At open mat, wrestler wrestle someone that is in or close to their weight class. The practices at the hour-long open mat change often, so Carter usually wrestles whoever shows up.

Carter hopes that all his hard work will pay off, and on his second wrestling season, he makes Varsity.

Molly Ross: Basketball

On weekdays right after school, you might find senior Molly Ross in the East weight room, at Matt Ross or even on the street running. Ross does various activities to get ready for her senior basketball season.

“It depends on the mood I’m in,” said Ross. “Usually if I’m running, I work on my upper body and then just stretch out my lower body and then run. It just depends.”

In previous years, Ross played club basketball with the KC Thundercats during the off season. Ross no longer plays on the club because most of the players are committed to play in college. Ross is considering playing college basketball or track. Although she hasn’t fully committed to play basketball in college, she continues to train on her own when she can.

Ross lifts weights in the weight room at East Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. If Ross gets busy with her Chemistry 2 or Calculus homework, then she shoots hoops after she finishes her homework.

When Ross shoots, she challenges herself by setting daily goals, like trying to make 25 free throws in a row, or making 50 three pointers.

“I always end on a make,” Ross said.

During the fall season, Ross stayed in shape by running constantly with the cross country C team.

Ross has been staying in shape and training for her final high school basketball season. Ross hopes to shut down opponents, score 10 points, grab eight rebounds and record a few assists each game.

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