Brown was diagnosed with an ischial tuberosity (sitting bone) stress reaction, "My doctor described it as my hamstring pulling away from my ischial tuberosity due to overuse."
The overuse came from her time adding cross country to her already demanding soccer schedule, which began way back at age four. "I was always a midfielder and loved running all over the field to get the ball in the back of my opponents net." It was through soccer, that she discovered that she had a talent for running. "I ran in middle school, but I really didn't really pursue running until my freshman year competitively."
Last year, with soccer and cross country, the mileage began to add up for Brown leading to the ischial tuberosity stress reaction. "With basically working out three times a day last spring I usually accumulated around 10-14 miles a day, and at least 70 miles weekly with some weeks getting as high as 100 miles per week with hardly any rest."
She was forced to sit out for almost three months of no running and it wasn't until mid March deep into track season that she was actually pain free. When she became completely healthy, that is when her running began to take off. Brown ran six sub 5:00 miles including a 4:55.79 for third place at Texas Relays, 4:53.23 at Region 1-6A Meet, 4:54.36 for second place at state, and then 4:53.97 at the Adidas Boost Boston Games.
Coming into the season, things were like a brand new start for the sophomore. A new athlete sort of speak.
She no longer devoted so much time to soccer. "I made the decision to quit soccer, and solely focus on running. I did not want to undergo the same situation I did the previous year, so I made the decision to drop soccer to become fully engaged in running. And so far I am really enjoying my decision!"
Without time spent between cross and soccer, the high mileage has been minimized and Brown can feel it and it shows, "Now I am only running 35-40 miles a week and feel much more rested, and not so fatigued," Brown said.
Without soccer, Brown has turned into the prototypical runner. "A very large portion of my life is running, and I absolutely love it!" However, she is much more than just a runner, "I'm also a whole person not just a "runner", so I also strive to be successful in other areas of my life such as: academics, family, my church, friends, school clubs, etc!"
You can tell that things are far different than last year for Brown. She has been on a tear this year. She started things off this year at the Little D Classic with a 18:08.20. She followed that up with a 17:37.00 for a third place finish Marcus I Invitational. From there, the season took off. Despite the weather conditions throughout the season, she would drop some blazing times the rest of the season including three sub 17:00 races.
"My mindset coming into this cross country season was to just relax and enjoy the process. My build up this year was filled with a lot more patience and discipline, and I think that is benefitting me a lot during the postseason."
Brown's times and status have been elevated due to her focus on the sport and pulling all of her attention and knowledge learned and previously shared between two sports and focused specifically on cross. "I've paid close attention to the little things such as sleep, nutrition, recovery, etc. Coming into the season I felt like I hadn't proven my ability yet, and came into the season motivated to prove that I can compete at a high level."
The plan is for Brown to actually get to run in the state meet this year. A luxury she deservedly earned last season as a freshman, but was unable to fulfill. With health and an increased determination on her side, she will get the opportunity to unleash her potential on the Old Settlers' course. "I look at it as an opportunity to showcase all my hard work and preparation for this year's cross country season. However, I also am aware that no success is given, and I am going to have to earn it."
"I am overall pleased with my season so far, It did not get off to the most perfect start at Marcus or Southlake, but I am grateful for loses because they can teach you so much more than wins can. However, I am not satisfied yet, and cannot wait for what's to come. I would love to possibly win state this season, and to qualify to go to NXN or maybe even Footlocker."