Salute to Seniors: Pearson Mixon of West Florence

Name: Pearson Mixon
High school:
West Florence 
Event PRs - 
5K (xc): 16:08  1600m: 4:37 800m 2:02
Hobbies: Playing sports and hanging out with friends

What was your most memorable race/competition?
My most memorable race was definitely the second race of my senior season. Before the Carolina Forest Invitational I had never won a race before in cross country and that was my first win against solid competition also. That race gave me a ton of confidence in my ability and really made me push myself harder than I ever had before. And also that course was really muddy and was by far the most fun course I had ever run.

How have you handled the suspension of the 2020 outdoor season?
I'm really bummed that the season has been cancelled but it was for the best of everyone so I can't be too upset. It's really opened more opportunity for me to better myself as an athlete.

Out of all of your high school accomplishments, which stands out the most?
Definitely signing to run in college. I didn't start running until my junior year, so this was never seen as a possibility for me until very recently. It's a blessing and a huge testament to show how far I've come in my short lived time as a high school cross country athlete.

If you could do it all over again, what would you change about your athletic career in high school?
If I could do it all over again I would have started running when I first started high school.

What were the most difficult obstacles you had to overcome?
I would say the most difficult thing for me was definitely the injury I suffered near the end of my senior cross country season, which ultimately ended my season. It was a huge physical and mental barrier that took me a while to recover from.

What will you miss the most?
Definitely the friendships I created with people from all over the state and my teammates.

Do you have any advice for younger athletes?
Be patient and learn to be comfortable with being uncomfortable.

How have your coaches influenced your performances and your life goals?
My coaches have always pushed me to be better than what I initially believed I could have been. They all saw potential in me that I didn't see in myself and they knew if they kept pushing me I would unlock it and they definitely pushed me day in and day out. And I'm extremely thankful for that.

What kind of impact did your family have on your time as a high school student-athlete?
My parents pushed me every day to be a better student and a better athlete. And they have always fully supported me throughout everything I've ever done.

What are your college or post-high school plans?
I will be attending Francis Marion University where I will be running cross country and track and field and majoring in History. 

What do you hope to achieve after high school?
I plan to receive a degree in History and earn my teaching certifications, so I can become a history teacher.

Do you see yourself coaching in the future? Please explain and if so, what level and why?
I want to coach in the future. I just newly found this passion for this sport and I want to enjoy it for as long as I possibly can. I truly wouldn't care what level I coached but if I could choose it would be high school. This sport changed my life and I hope that I can find a way for it to change lives for future student-athletes as well.

I would like to shout-out my coaches and my teammates for pushing me day in and day out and giving me a constant challenge.

If there is one thing in the world you could do, what would it be and why?
If there is one thing I could do, I would go run on Michael Johnson Track at Nike Headquarters. So many legendary athletes have stepped foot on that track and it's arguably the nicest track in the world.