Cocalico's Jamie Zamrin was on fire in 2016. Zamrin hit a personal best time of 18:12 on the Paul Short Invitational and won the Lancaster-Lebanon League title. She put on an impressive kick past some talented senior runners to take the individual District 3 AAA title. At states, she placed eighth overall on the tough hills of Hershey.
Zamrin was mentally tough, but her grit was tested in 2017. The spring looked promising for the rising distance star, but her body had other plans. Just after the first spring invitational, Zamrin was forced to deal with an IT injury that ultimately ended her track season.
Instead of 3200 meter PRs and races under the lights, Zamrin was stuck in the pool. Despite this setback, she remained dedicated to her recovery and therapy this spring. Her inability to run in track only seemed to strengthen her dedication to becoming a great distance runner.
Missing track didn't put a damper on Zamrin's competitive spirit. As she begins her senior year of cross country, Zamrin spoke with PennTrackXC about her journey back to running and the upcoming season.
PennTrackXC: I read some sad news that you were battling an IT injury this past track season. This injury is common among runners. How was or is the recovery process?
Jamie Zamrin: The recovery process that I went through this past track season and into the summer tested me. I had to go to multiple treatment providers such as an Active Release therapist, a chiropractor, a physical therapist, my athletic trainer, and an orthopedic doctor several times a week. These appointments were very frustrating because none of the doctors could tell me why I had this injury or when I was going to be back to running again. I also had a swim workout everyday and that was difficult because I am not a great swimmer. This process did teach me to treat every run as a privilege. I do believe that the injury made me stronger and more dedicated to my sport.
PTXC: Do you have any words of advice for other runners who might also be struggling with this same injury?
JZ: The best advice that I can give to runners going through any injury is that you need to stay positive and dedicated to the process. While it is difficult to spend hours a day going through recovery exercises and doctors appointments, these activities are vital to come back and do what you love.
PTXC: How has your summer training been going thus far?
JZ: My summer training has been amazing! I came back to running the first week of June and ever since then my training has just been on an upward spiral. I was in Colorado at Team Prep USA's running camp from June 25-July 29 and the camp really helped me to stay motivated all summer long. I was running alongside girls who were state champions, national champions, and national record holders which inspired me to really go after this season knowing I am capable of accomplishing my dreams.
Interview Above: Zamrin after winning the District 3 AAA title
PTXC: As you prepare to enter competition again, what are you looking forward to most?
JZ: As I reenter the field of competition, I am looking forward to having that post-race feeling of knowing that my training has helped me get to where I am. A race is truly a mental test of who is the toughest and who is willing to lay it all out on the course. I am also looking forward to showing my skills since I haven't had a tough race since last cross country season. I have been pushing myself everyday because I know that I need to show everyone how strong I really am, considering I missed out on my junior track season.
PTXC: Are there any invites or dual meets that you or your team are excited about?
JZ: I am especially excited about the Ben Bloser Invitational and the Paul Short Invitational. Last year, I was very happy with my placement in both of these meets and I am just so pumped to race against such strong girls in these invites. Ben Bloser is a great race to help remember my district course and prepare me for the post season not only because of it being the same course, but also because all of my competition at districts typically goes to this invitational.
Paul Short has been the invitational that I have been thinking about all summer long. This race will truly give me a chance to set a new and strong PR as well as be seen by the multiple college coaches. This meet also has such amazing competition because many girls from out of state come, which makes it even more exciting.
PTXC: What are some goals you have for yourself for your senior year of cross?JZ: I have so many goals going into this cross season. First and foremost, I am going to stay motivated the entire postseason up until Foot Locker Regionals. I want to be able to have my best races at states and regionals. In order to do that, I have to be focused on staying dedicated throughout the entire season and not peak too early. I am hoping to be recruited by many of the schools that I have already visited and have always dream of going to. I also want to get a PR that showcases all of the hard work I have been putting in this summer.