For The Tribune

Since her first step on the cross-country course and track, Brownstown’s Hannah Gallion wanted to be a runner.

Gallion said she began running cross-country in eighth grade.

“I really liked it and continued it into high school,” she said. “My cousin convinced me to run track instead of playing softball my sophomore year, and I really loved track and really wanted to keep doing it.

“I liked the 800 and the 400 a lot (in track), more of the mid-distance races. You get to run fast, but it’s not just a sprint. The 800 is my main focus this year. Last year I hit 2:49 and this year I’m hoping by the end of the season I’m 2:45 or lower. This winter we’ve done a lot of conditioning.”

If she runs the 400 this spring, her goal is to break 1:10.

Gallion said you have to mix up your workouts between running miles and sprinting workouts.

“The 3,200 relay is my favorite race to run,” she said. “I liked either being the lead-off or running second because once you get your part done you can cheer on the rest of your team. Sometimes I think being that last person I let myself go out too fast trying to catch up.”

Gallion said her highlight in track was helping the 3,200 relay team qualify for the regional her sophomore season.

“Going into the sectional the coaches told us that we needed to get this certain time to get (to the regional),” Gallion said. “Going into the race all of us we were really ready to run it and we ended up finishing three or spots ahead (of where they were seeded.)”

At the beginning of last cross-country season, Gallion was running third or fourth for the Braves.

“Then I hurt my shoulder about halfway through the season and got put back a little bit for a while,” Gallion said. “I ran in the sectional and had an OK time, not what I was expecting.”

Gallion’s career-best on the courses was 25 minutes.

She said she tried to stay with and pass runners on other teams that she became familiar with.

“We ran against a lot of the same teams, so you knew who you should be running with, who you should be by so you wanted to keep a look out for those girls,” Gallion said. “I always tried to do my first mile a little fast, then that second mile slow down a little bit so I could come back that third mile strong.”

With running, Gallion feels that practice pays forward to race day.

“You can really tell if you skip a practice or a couple practices,” Gallion said. “You have to really keep up going to practices, keep up your stamina and just be able to run your races.

“In cross-country, during that second mile, or even during track, it’s easy to just think, ‘If I just go slower I’ll feel better’, or if ‘I just stop I’ll feel better.’ You really have to push and keep yourself going.”

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”At a glance” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Name: Hannah Gallion

Parents: Joey and Beth Gallion

Sibling: Luke

Sports: Cross-country, four years; track, three years; softball, one year

Athletic honors: Cross-country, mental attitude award 2015; track, regional qualifier in 3,200 relay in 2014

Organizations: National Honor Society, choir, Christian Club, Science Club, musical, academic super bowl team, student council

Plans after high school: Attend Butler University or Purdue University to be a physician assistant

Favorite food: Lasagna

Favorite TV show:” One Man Standing”

Favorite singer: Adele

Favorite movie: “Aladdin”

Favorite team: New York Giants

[sc:pullout-text-end][sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”Q&A” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Q: What’s it like attending BCHS?

A: “Brownstown Central is real small and you get to know everyone. Some people don’t like it but I really do. There is always someone in the hallway that you know and can say ‘hi’ to and talk to.”

Q: Do you enjoy competing at home in track?

A: “I love the home meets, just the atmosphere, and we always have a lot of people come out to watch us, people who don’t necessarily go to away meets. You just have a lot of people there to support you.”

Q: Favorite away cross-country course?

A: “I liked running at Jac-Cen-Del. It’s a nice, little course. You kind of get to see some different views, and it seemed to go fast. When we were running I liked the smaller meets just because they’re closer to the people around you and you don’t feel like you’re being trampled in the beginning. As far as the atmosphere goes and just being at the races, at the start line and the finish line, I liked the big invitationals.”