Going the Distance
“Success isn’t how far you got, but the distance you traveled from where you started,”
words from Steve Prefontaine, arguably the greatest American distance runner to ever live.
These are words Laredo Sports Medicine Clinic’s October Spotlight Athlete lives by. We are proud to introduce Juan Salinas III as our Athlete Spotlight honoree for October.
“I traveled a prolonged distance to get to where I am now, one of the top Cross Country runners in Laredo,”
says the J.W. Nixon High school senior cross country runner. Juan Salinas III has come a long way from that scrawny 4-foot-tall freshman. Juan explains
“Nobody gave me a second look. My first Cross Country race of my high school career was a 2 mile in which I ran a 15:22 for just 2 miles. I was sorry.”
Going into his sophomore year, Juan wasn’t much better. He was running a 22:19 on a course that wasn’t even 3 miles. Though he was amongst the slowest on his JV team, Juan kept at it.
Then, somewhere along the way things clicked, Juan ended the year running a 17:45 at our District Meet finishing 4th man on our Varsity Team. He knew what had happened. He sacrificed. He worked hard. He ran!! Having gone through all the pain and the tears, he emerged as an elite runner. Salinas never let his 4’11” stature diminish his drive.
“I never looked back I trained and put in all the work necessary along with my teammates. Meet by meet, race by race, I rose”
exclaims an exuberant Salinas. Entering his junior year, Juan Salinas III was the top man for the Nixon Varsity team. During the season, Juan hit a personal record of 16:59 in a 5k to lead our Varsity team.
Now, midway through his Senior year, and now the team Captain, Juan is currently running at his top speed and form.
“My teammates and I have made noise around the city, as we have emerged as perhaps the best team in the city,”
remarks the confident runner after winning the Laredo City Meet just a few weeks ago.
Juan qualified to the Area Meet, placing 5th in District for the 1600-meter run. Salinas says,
“I have risen to one of the top runners in the city and have now set my sights on State. I will not settle for less. I look forward to leading my team to the promised land.”
Juan is humbled by the responsibility of team leadership. Juan reflects by saying
“I thank the Lord our God for blessing me with the ability to do what I do, day in and day out. For blessing me with parents that support me in everything that I do. For blessing me with the best coach in the state, Coach Luis Escamilla. He has guided me and continues to guide me on and off the course. He guides me to be not only the best runner I can be but the best person I can be in life.”
Juan has traveled the distance to be successful, and the best part is he’s not done yet. Laredo Sports Medicine Clinic agrees! Juan and his team are not done yet, and we wish them all the best in the upcoming season. Run to State!! Congratulations on all your achievements. The healthcare providers at LSMC salute our October Spotlight Athlete Juan Salinas III.
Laredo Sports Medicine Clinic is South Texas’ premier sports medicine and orthopedic care provider, located in Laredo, Texas. Schedule your next appointment and let us get you back in the game