Runnels High School - Baton Rouge, LA
Number of years coaching:6 years as the boys and girls Cross Country coach and 3 years as the Track coach.
At a glance: Coach Julie Fink started the cross country program at Runnels High School in 2006 when it was only considered a club team, added a track and field program a few years later and continues to build a top notch team at a school that doesn’t have much of a sports presence. She truly goes above and beyond the call of duty. Since the school doesn’t have a track, Coach Fink single-handedly built a "Trail of Dreams" - an 800m jogging trail through a wooded, unused area behind the school to give her team a place to practice.
What piece of advice does Coach Fink give an athlete having a bad day to inspire them?
I encourage them to put it in the past – and what truly matters is that they give their best effort every time. Sometimes that best effort might not meet the expectations – learn from it and use the bad day to get better. I work hard to find something positive in practice or in the meet to redirect their focus. I do have a few inspirational phrases that I like use with them…Challenge yourself don’t cheat yourself, Invest in Your Best, and Believe and Achieve!
What makes Coach Fink Run Happy?
Staying committed to my own personal training and setting new race goals for the athletes, our team, and myself. Having a team that is inclusive and not exclusive. Creating an environment that lets everyone know that they have a place on our team and the potential to be a RUNNER.