Bednar Sets New Running Records

On Wednesday, November 25, Charlotte Bednar ’22 competed in the East Coast Cross Country Championships at Holmdel, New Jersey, finishing in second place with a time of 17:46.7 for the five kilometer run.

On Wednesday, November 25, Charlotte Bednar ’22 competed in the East Coast Cross Country Championships at Holmdel, New Jersey, finishing in second place with a time of 17:46.7 for the five kilometer run. Additionally, this past fall, Bednar set another New Jersey state record on October 23, finishing second in the Big City Invitational with a time of 16:21.67 for the 5km. Currently, Bednar is ranked first in New Jersey and seventh in the nation among high school girls cross country runners.

After setting a New Jersey girls cross country course record at Holmdel Park, Bednar was pleased with her performance, believing that there was “nothing more that [she] could do.” The pandemic has impacted athletes everywhere, altering their workout routines, limiting their attendance at meets, and even causing their seasons to be canceled. Despite these challenges, Bednar felt that she was still able to compete to the best of her ability because the impact of Covid-19 on the race was minimal, saying, “We only needed to wear a mask at the starting line and we were able to take them off once we started running.”

Bednar first discovered her prowess for running during a camp in her seventh grade year, where she ran her first 5km race. Since then, she has not stopped competing. Even when she does not have any upcoming races, Bednar still keeps up with her daily training regimen.

“I wake up every morning for a run before doing some strength workouts, and then I go on bike rides and do some other exercises,” she said. Due to the independent nature of running, her workout routine has not changed much since the pandemic.

Due to her high nationwide ranking among high school girls cross country runners, she “definitely feel[s] a pressure to win or do well” as her placing rises, and the increasing burden is “more nerve-wracking every race.”

However, this year she aims to achieve her goals despite the pressure and lack of meets. “I hope to get a really good time for the two-mile and hopefully break 16 minutes for the [5km] on the track,” she said. She will be adapting her workout routine accordingly, quickening the pace of the sets to better adjust herself to the shorter distances of the two-mile and 5km.

Bednar shared a message to athletes struggling through the pandemic, saying, “Keep working hard and set goals for yourselves so you’re able to keep pushing...Even if you don’t have a game or a meet to look forward to, setting mini-goals definitely helps keep you on track.”

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