SCISA Championships: Jasmine Smith Interview

Name: Jasmine Smith
Personal bests: 800: 2:29, 3200:12:41, 5K: 20:19
Academic interests: I love history and creative writing. I am also very interested in marine sciences.
Hobbies: Calligraphy and Escape rooms.
Favorite quote: Dreams don't work unless you do

How did you get involved in the sport?
I had actually been swimming since I was little, but my freshman year I suffered an injury and had to stop swimming. My PE teacher told me I should come out to track and try sprints and jumps. I was quickly moved to the distance group and have loved it ever since.

Tell us about your thoughts on this season so far?
I could not have asked for a better senior season. I have really been able to branch out and run more events like the 3200, but also have been able to have big PRs and set the school record in my favorite event the 800.

How do you look at being one of the
top-ranked SCISA athletes?
It's an honor! Knowing that my freshman year I could not even imagine running a qualifying time to now being able to be competitive at state has been amazing.

How are you feeling the week of the SCISA Championships?
I feel very good! We had a really strong last workout and tapering has been going very well.

What is it like for you to be able to compete in public school meets and place?
It's a lot of fun! I really love racing in super competitive heats and seeing all the amazing talent that is in South Carolina.

From your success in 2017, what goals did you have at the beginning of the season and for the rest of the season?
I really wanted to set the school record in the 800, and just be as competitive as possible in my other events. For state I am anchoring two relays and running two individuals, and I would just like to score as many points as possible for my team.

What's your favorite event and why?
I love the 800. It is just the right mix of sprinting and distance for me. There really isn't time to second guess your pace, you just have to run.

Do you have a specific motivation?
I just enjoy seeing how far I can push myself, and knowing that fast times are the result of hard work. I am also very driven to do anything necessary to help my team out.

What has been your biggest challenge in the sport?
Summer training for sure. The heat and humidity in Charleston is quite the challenge to deal with. If you don't wake up early and get going, you won't be able to get it in due to the temperatures.

Walk us through a race for you (from pre race until post race). What goes through your mind?
A couple hours before a race I try and visualize my race plan and the splits I want to hit. Then right before a race I just talk to my teammates right up to the line so that I don't stress out about it. After the race I debrief with my coach and then get a little cool down jog and stretch in before my next race.

How and when did you start training for track and field this season?
I took about a week off after cross country state. Then I started just building a big base. I signed myself up for the Charleston Half Marathon and used this as motivation to get some quality long runs in.

What do you enjoy the most about the
Porter Gaud team?
We really are a family. We all get along so well and no matter how hard of a workout we have we always have fun with it.

What do you feel you have learned from your coaches, teammates and the sport?
My coaches and the sport in general have really taught me about the power of hard work. I've learned that if you really want to get better you have to show up every day and put in the work. It's not always easy but it's always worth it.

What would like to see happen in the future?
I would like to keep improving myself in college. I have set some big goals for my first year of college cross country.

If there is one thing in the world you could do, what would it be and why?
I would end plastic pollution. I believe it is one of the most harmful pollutants, not only to the animals and the environment, but also to people. Without it the world would be a much happier and cleaner place.