My name is Nicole Althof-Long and I have been running Cross Country and Track since the 7th grade. I have over come several obstacles in my high school running career and have learned one main thing, that I love to run more than anything. My freshman year I was blessed to make it to states in Cross Country and had a great Track season. As a Freshman I broke my school's (Strong Vincent High School) record in the 1600m, 800m, and 2 mile. My first obstacle was when I had stepped on a piece of glass and had to get it surgically removed, I was pulled out of my Sophomore Cross Country season. It healed in time for me to run my Sophomore track season which went well, I made it to districts in the 1600m, 800m, and 2 mile. During this season I had run differently due to the glass and it caused a stress fracture forcing me to sit out my Junior Cross Country season. I also discovered I have Gastroparesis and had to get my Gallbladder removed. Having to take some time off was torture but I continued to workout by swimming and lifting. My Junior year, I made it to States in the 1600m and 800m, I was the only Erie City School kid to make it to States. Due to the fact that I attend a college preparatory school and that we do not have sports and our school district does not have money, I have to play sports for a public school in my area. This school's sports program recieves little interest from coaches, board directors, students, and the community. We lack equipment, transportation, inspiration, the same coach every year, and most importantly a track to run on. I am extremely excited to run in college as it has been a dream of mine since I began running. Since I started at the bottom with nothing, every little step of the journey is so wondeful. My goal for college is to learn as much as possible while growing as a student athlete.