Cupertino High School Cross Country 2016
Home of the Pioneers

Hi Potential Tino Runner,

You are receiving this message because you indicated an interest in cross country. You will have many more activities as well as sports to choose from in high school. It may be difficult for some of you to decide what to participate in. You will spend a significant amount of time participating in whatever you choose, so the only advice that I can offer is to choose activities or sports that you have a passion for. High school can be a bit daunting, but if you stay organized and apply yourself you should be OK.

The official (when tryouts begin) cross country season begins on Friday, August 5th at 9:00AM (we will meet at the track). We always start our practices at CHS with a short warm-up jog, stretching, and then we do whatever the workout is. We start off slowly, but by the end of the season, you'll be able to run at least 6 miles non-stop in the hills without struggling (too much). One of the keys to success is to come to the first day with a degree of fitness. You can not sit around all summer and then expect to keep up with those who have been working out. The high school cross country season is much longer than middle school, more varied, and more rigorous so your fitness level needs to be higher. The shortest race is 2.1 miles and the longest is 3.1 miles with hills.

During the summer, I hold optional conditioning sessions for cross country.  The workout schedule for each week is posted on the web site on Sunday. During the summer I determine the actual workout based upon who is there. If you are working out on your own or with a group, you should be working towards a minimum of 20 miles per week. If you are involved in another sport, run when you can. During the summer, we start at 20 miles per week and go up from there. The basic schedule, there will be some variation, is Monday through Friday at 8AM at CHS, and Saturday mornings at 7AM at Fremont Older. We start early so you can have more of each day for other activities and it will be cooler.  Sometimes we will workout at 6PM. This will change somewhat as my competition and training, and other activities requires.  Physical forms are not required for the optional summer conditioning, however, if you have an issue like asthma, please let me know beforehand.  I am requiring an emergency card from any new runners to the program.

All athletes must submit all completed forms to their coach prior to participating in their first official practice as a CHS athlete. 
Schedule your physicals now if you have not already done so
Physical forms are at:

Scroll down the page to Athletic Forms. 
  Code of Conduct/ Steroids Policy Form
  Athletic/Activity Participation and Emergency Form
  Physical Exam Form Part 1
  Physical Exam Form Part 2
  Concussion Information Form
  Emergency Card  (separate from the form package)
*If you unable to download these forms, let me know.
Note: the 8 to 18 system will be replaced sometime in July.  Do not use it. I will provide information about the new system when it becomes available.

You will not be able to tryout or practice from August 5th on without your completed and correct physical forms.  The forms are due to me on Monday, August 1st.  I have to review them for errors before they are passed on to the trainer to review for errors.

When schools starts, practice will be from 3:15PM to 6:15PM (sometimes we may end earlier), Monday through Friday, and Saturdays generally in the early morning (6:30-7:00AM start unless there is a meet). Most of our Saturday morning runs are at Fremont Older. Sundays is our mandatory rest day. You are not allowed to practice or race in any meets or runs outside of our cross country schedule (8/5- 11/26, unless your season is finished).

A few words about running/racing shoes: Depending on how much you want to spend, you can get by for as little as $50 on sale or as much as $160. The best values are in the $70-90 range. The most important goal is to get a good pair of training shoes with good impact absorption and arch support. I strongly recommend that you buy your shoes at a reputable running store. The stores that I recommend are Athletic Performance in Los Gatos (larger selection) and Willow Glen, and Runner’s Factory also in Los Gatos, and Ryan's Sports in Santa Clara, especially if you do not have much experience with running shoes. These stores have knowledgeable staff that will help you find the right shoe for you and most will let you try it out before you buy. The shoe may also double as a racing flat but will be heavier than if you were to buy a separate racing shoe. A good training flat will cost $70 or more but all of the above stores will give you a 10-20% - depending upon if you buy trainers or racing flats- discount if you tell them you run for Cupertino High School. Make sure the fit is comfy with toe room. A racing flat will be many ounces lighter than trainers and make you feel like you're flying when you put them on, but it's also another expense. I prefer to race in shoes that I do not train in. I strongly recommend that you obtain a new pair shoes every running season, because the shoes will breakdown over time and continued use will lead to injuries. Also, Spenco inner sole inserts are recommended to help with shin splint type problems, especially if you have them now.  

The following link contains the agenda for the pre-season cross country meeting I held along with the current meet schedule.
 2016 Cross Country Pre-Season Mtg

A little about me, I am Paul Armstrong, the head coach for cross country and track and field. I have been at Cupertino High School since 2002.  This will be my fifteenth cross country season.. I have a lot of running experience that includes cross country (2 years high school, 4 years college), many road races, and ten marathons (2:42 best), as well as track (1 year high school, 4 years college, and many years of open, masters, and corporate competition). I still run and race competitively occasionally and I may run with you all some of the time this summer and fall.

Coach Paul Armstrong
Cupertino High School  -  Cross Country and Track
"Perfect practice leads to perfect results."  "Every practice is important."  
"Every rest day is important."