Talkin' XC: Marissa Sheva - Pennridge


Athlete: Marissa Sheva
School: Pennridge
Class: 2015
Profile: PIAA Class AAA State and District 1 runner-up in 2012, as well as SOL Continental champion. Finished 6th at states as a freshman.

So far in 2013:
» 18:51.00 at PIAA Foundation on 9-21
» 18:27.17 at PTXC-5 on 9-7
» 18:02.35 at John Sharp Viking Invite on 8-30

5K PR:
» 17:45.00 at PIAA District 1 Championships in 2012


PennTrackXC: How is your fitness now that you are nearing the end of the 2013 season. What excites you most about the meets to come?

Marissa Sheva: My fitness is great! I know that I am in really good shape from the workouts I've been running so that makes me excited. And championships are by far the best part of the season. District I always has great competition, and the meet is held at Lehigh which usually means fast times. States will also be interesting this year with the amount of girls running really fast times! I'm excited to be a part of both of these races.

PennTrackXC: Which 2013 meet has been the most important for you thus far, and what did you learn from the race?

Marissa Sheva: My race at John Sharp Viking, which was my first race of the season, showed me that all of the work I put in over the summer paid off. It reminds me that I'm in great shape when I start to doubt myself.

PennTrackXC: What kind of adjustments, if any, have you made this season?

Marissa Sheva: Well, I was just recently diagnosed with mono, which has been pretty hard to digest. Obviously I am going to have to make major adjustments to my training! It is completely my decision to continue with the season, and I plan to finish with as much ambition as I started with. The last few weeks will be interesting, but I'm excited and still looking forward to championship season.

PennTrackXC: When & how did you get started in cross country?

Marissa Sheva: I started racing cross country my freshman year. My sister had already run two years, so of course I wanted to run with her! Most competitive distance runners run year round, so I figured I'd have to do the same to run with the best of them.

PennTrackXC: Who has influenced you the most in your life and what they meant to you and your success?

Marissa Sheva: Without a doubt my family. They have been my support system and biggest fans during my lowest and highest points in everything I've done. I can't thank them enough!

PennTrackXC: What are your keys to success when it comes to your training program?

Marissa Sheva: I think my main key to success is training smart. Listening to my body during workouts rather than pushing through something that could potentially become an injury is important to me.

PennTrackXC: What is your most memorable performance in a cross country race over your career and why?

Marissa Sheva: The one that sticks out the most to me is districts last year. I ran a pretty big PR on my favorite course and it gave me a big confidence boost going into the state meet.

PennTrackXC: What is your greatest non-running experience in cross country so far and why?

Marissa Sheva: Every year at states we go to Chocolate World the day before and buy a ton candy -- for after the race of course -- and go on the [tourism] ride like five times. These silly traditions always make the state meet memorable and I look forward to it every year!

PennTrackXC: What are your goals for the 2013 cross country season?

Marissa Sheva: As competitive as I am, I still have high goals and expectations for myself going into championship season. Racing with mono will definitely not be easy, but it's a challenge I'm willing to take on! I'm still hoping for a PR and fast races at the district and the state meet. Regionals and nationals are still on my mind, but we'll see how the next few weeks play out.


- What's your favorite running related movie?
I actually haven't seen many running movies, so I guess I'll have to go with Chariots of Fire since it's one of the only ones I have seen!

- Do you prefer Instagram or Vine?
Definitely Instagram!

- What's your favorite jam during a long run?
I rarely listen to music on long runs, but if I do it's John Mayer!

- What's your favorite cheat food?
Anything chocolate