Blythewood's Deogracias Honored for Making Shrine Bowl Run

Name: Alan Deogracias
Hobbies: Running, Illustration, Getting Epic Victory Royales
Academic interest: Environmental/Wildlife Sciences
Personal bests: 16:00 (XC 5K), 15:38 (Road 5K), 9:51 (3200), 4:40 (1600)

What does it mean to be named to the Shrine Bowl Run team and helping 
the hospital?
It's an immense honor to be able to contribute to such a positive cause. I'm always trying to find ways to help those in need in whatever way I can, and this run just furthers those opportunities.

What did you hear about the Shrine Bowl Run before this year?
My perception was that it was a great bonding and community service experience for all runners involved, and I felt it would be an important part of my contribution to S.C. XC.

What do you hope to experience during The Run?
I'd love to run with my friends in the spirit of holiday giving and charity, enjoying some of the last runs I may take with many of my friends in this state.

How are you preparing to run with a football?

Running with a football was the only thing I remembered from the church pee-wee leagues.

How would you rate your senior season?
It certainly wasn't my favorite season. I made a lot of excuses about why I wasn't doing well, that went far beyond the scope of my injury. Its been an important learning experience for my mental toughness as I take my running to the next level.

What future goals do you have?
First, I'd like to be an All-State Finisher in the 800, 1600, and 3200 for track and field, and hopefully get the opportunity to compete at New Balance Outdoor Nationals. In the future, I'd like to be an NCAA All-American in the XC 10K, Indoor 3K and 5K, and Outdoor 5K and 10K.

Have you made the decision to compete at the next level? Please explain.
I have decided to compete at the next level. It has been a very deliberate and intensive process of deciding where I will continue my academic and athletic careers. I have two main choices in my mind currently, and my decision will become public later in the spring.

How did you get involved with the sport and when?
I became involved in the sport after I failed to make the freshman basketball team at my high school. The ball coach told me I could run, so I did and didn't look back. In hindsight, I wish I had started with running all along.

Do you have any relation or know someone that has attended the 
Shriners Hospital?
I have no personal associations to the Shriners or the Shriners Hospital, but I personally have nothing but support for the work they perform.

How have you seen the sport change in the state? Please explain.
As with all things, distance running is cyclic. There are periods of various levels of competition, whether being between a large range of high-caliber individuals, or teams as a whole. This year, I feel as though we saw consistent competition between a small, elite group, with much heavier competition on the pack-style team-side of the sport.

What was your motivation for your final XC season?
My motivation was to recover entirely from my injured track and field season and potentially shoot for a state title. Unfortunately, I was unable to meet my goals, but that has only inspired me further for my senior track season and for competition at the collegiate level.

If there is one thing in the world you could do, what would it be and why?

Assuming I'd make it on my own merit, I'd like to replicate Emil Zatopek's triple victory in the Olympic 5,000, 10,000, and marathon. Aside from that, going to Mars would be pretty cool.