"By the end of the season, I want to run a 4:10 mile and a 1:52 or 1:50 800."
That is what Brendan Hebert said to us back on February 17, 2018. For a guy that runs 1:53.62, you'd think that is a pretty legitimate goal.
But, for Hebert to set that goal at the beginning of the season, that was pretty extreme.
The Lake Travis senior entered the season far away from the runner that you'd think would look to do that. At the end of his junior year, Hebert had personal bests of 2:04.27 - 800m, 4:33.36 - 1600m, and 16:58.15 - 5K. In fact, other than cross county, he hadn't even made it out of district in any event.
In this, his senior season, things changed for Hebert. Beginning in cross country season, Hebert showed that this season would be different -- drastically different.
He finally advanced beyond the Region 4 cross country meet to the UIL state meet where he placed 86th. He blew away his previous PR from junior year by almost a minute with his 15:53.30.
You can ask Hebert personally and he'd be the first to tell you that he wasn't really good.
Oh what a difference a year makes. If you don't know who this young man is by now, then you might want to start paying attention.
"I got tired of being in the back, and worked hard in practice."
Brendan Hebert - Lake Travis senior
When the cross country season finished Hebert didn't. He continued to put in the work that would drive him to the top.
Back in February, when he shared his season goals with us, it was right after he ran a six second PR in the 800m. In his first track meet of the year, the career 2:04 guy would run a 55 second first lap followed up with a 61 for what at the time was a new 1:58.05, at the Lake Travis Invitational.
But wait, that's not all. A week later at the Westlake High School Chap Relays, he would drop a 1600m PR by running 4:25.20.
Hebert is clearly the type of guy that when he sets his mind on something, he doesn't get satisfied or complacent until he accomplishes it. He kept his pedal to the medal while training and made his competitions count as he continuee to PR and run elite times as the season went on.
He even added two races he hadn't previously ran with the 3200m and the 3,000 steeplechase. He would run 9:30.36 at the SAS Relays in the 3200m and eventually lower that by running 9:24.86. In the steeplechase, he ran an elite time of 9:06.74 Lovejoy Spring Distance Festival and then weeks later followed that up with a consistent 9:09.37 for second place at the Texas Relays. That's right, a kid who has never made it out of his district meet took second place at Texas Relays.
So, what was it that made Hebert become a totally new athlete? "I got tired of being in the back, and worked hard in practice," Hebert said.
"It's pretty cool, I didn't really start being good until this year." Good is an understatement. Hebert now has a resume of 1:53, 4:19, 9:24.86, 6:06.74, and 15:33.30 to show for just how good he has become. Outside of times, he has shown that he is able to compete. Aside from the second place at Texas Relays and the Lovejoy race, Hebert has taken on some of the top talent in the state at some of the biggest meets. He took third a the Texas Distance Festival, and first place at the Jesuit Sheaner Relays.
He has been all over the state this year to run in the big time races. However, he will be looking to run in the biggest race of the year and that will be held right in his hometown. When asked about running at the UIL 6A state track meet and he said, "Hopefully! I'm tripling at district, It'll be cool to make it in all three."
Today and tomorrow, the District 25-26 Area meet will be held in San Antonio. Hebert will continue the next step of his journey from being to be the kid who couldn't even win district to being the kid who qualified for state in three events. He said it would be cool to make it to state in all three events, but how cool would it be if won at least one of them?
- 400m - 52.46
- 800m - 1:53.62
- 1600m - 4:19.59
- 2K Steeple - 6:06.74
- 3200m - 9:24.86
- 5K (xc) - 15:53.30