scrunners: When did you start running?
Embler: I started running in February of 2002.
scrunners: Do you remember your first race, what was your finish time?
Embler: I ran 800 meters in 2:39.
scrunners: Do you find it more important to perform to your individual best than how others expect you to perform?
Embler: I'm always satisfied with my race if I give my best effort. I have always given my best effort so I have always been satisfied . . . . but I'm not always happy with the result.
scrunners: What did you think about the sport when you started to run?
Embler: I liked it because I was pretty good at it, but I didn't enjoy it as much as I do this year because I wasn't in good shape and I thought I was going to die after most of my races.
scrunners: Who else in your family runs and do you see a tradition continuing in your family?
Embler: Everyone in my family runs. May dad was the first. Then his two brothers, Marc and Mitch. They all won state championships in the 1970's and 1980's. My grandmother runs and races, my mom runs and enjoys an occasional race, and my sister (Erin Embler) started running track this year as a 7th grader. I think the tradition will continue because it is something we can do as a family.
scrunners: What year did you start to run for Travelers Rest High School?
Embler: I started in February, 2002.
scrunners: What are your goals for the remainder of the track season?
Embler: I would love to be fortunate enough to win the state championship again in the 800 meters. I had hoped to make it to the state meet in the 4x4 also, but we did not qualify at the upper state. Two of the girls on the 4x4 did not qualify in another event so it broke my heart for them.
scrunners: Do you enjoy cross country or track better, or is there not a difference?
Embler: I like cross country because it is more friendly, as if we are racing together instead of against each other. I like track because I'm very competitive and track is so intense.
scrunners: What kind of tactic do you take on when entering an 800 meter race, 5k cross country race, or the 4x4?
Embler: It depends. This year I have employed several tactics. Recently, in the 800, I simply want a quick first 200 followed by a second 200 at a good tempo (about 35-36). The third 200 I try not to slow down much but not drive with my arms and I can start my kick any time within the last 200 [depending on how I feel, what the pace is, and where the competition is]. In cross country I just try to keep catching someone ahead of my the whole race. In the 4x4 I run the first 200 as fast as I can go and then I pick it up the last 200.
scrunners: Who is your school's biggest team rival?
Embler: We don't have one. We suck! We only have a small number of runners who work hard, but it is getting better.
scrunners: Do you have a favorite meal the night before a competition?
Embler: Yes. Spaghetti and ice cream [from Bruster's!].
scrunners: Have you ever been aqua jogging, if so, has it benefited you?
Embler: I am not familiar with aqua jogging, but it sounds interesting.
scrunners: In the running world, what athlete do you admire the most, why?
Embler: Billy Mills, because no one believed he could win an Olympic championship and he did it anyway because he believed. He truly had the heart of a champion.
scrunners: What kind of shoes do you train and race in?
Embler: I train in Nike Air Pegasus and I race in Brooks Racer T3 or Nike's.
scrunners: What would you say is the most prestigious competition you have entered?
Embler: The Volunteer Classic in Knoxville.
scrunners: Do you like slower tactical scenario or the faster pace, all out race scenario?
Embler: I don't care. I like the ones where I win.
scrunners: What would you like to do when you graduate from high school and after college?
Embler: Career wise I want to be an anesthesiologist. Athletically, I would like to run track and either cross country or play soccer in college. I'm still improving so I can't plan for after college but, of course, everyone dreams of running in the Olympics.
scrunners: Do you see yourself running a marathon one day, if so which one?
Embler: My weekly training doesn't even come close to a marathon so I can't conceive of that race right now, but if I thought I could do, well I might try it (after my track days are over).
scrunners: Living on Paris Mountain, has that helped you become a stronger runner on the flatter surfaces?
Embler: Up to this point I have done so few miles that I don't think it has been a factor. We have kept the quality of my work high and the quantity very low but that will change very soon. I plan to allot of work this summer becoming more fit and I think the mountain will probably help in that regard.
scrunners: What does your mileage per week average in the summer, early cross country season, early track season, and the tapering
for both seasons?
Embler: I have never counted so these are estimates:
Summer [ 15-25/week (will increase this year to 25-30/wk)]
early cross country season -15/week (increase this year)
early track season-20/week (increase to 25-30 next year)
tapering - cross country (7-8/week)
tapering - track (10/week)
scrunners: What kind of cross training has worked for you without losing a large amount of fitness?
Embler: I play soccer for GFC under 16 team. We are the current state champions, so I will be practicing twice a day during June. I hope this will help me increase my fitness because I plan on running a little also. I also enjoy riding bikes with my dad. I have not really had an opportunity to concentrate on running because of soccer. I am looking forward to seeing what I can do if I get really fit for running. It is hard to tell if soccer has helped my running or not because I was a soccer player before I was a runner.