The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

Humans of Harker: Off to the races

Adam Sayed’s determination keeps him going forward
Connie Xu
“I think like I said a bit helps with developing work ethic and also just because of the mental and physical commitment and helps with time management because like, really, I mean, like when you get back I mean, you have less time and you’re more tired. So it is hard to do work but kind of helps you get organized so that you’re able to get your work done,” Adam Sayed (12) said.

Ready. Set. Go! An air horn goes off, and the cross country race on September 16th finally begins. The blaring sound echoes in Adam Sayed (12)’s ears as he begins running, and adrenaline pumps through his body, signaling his muscles to continue. After fifteen minutes, the finish line is in sight, and Adam sprints through the finish line. Cheers erupt from friends, coaches, parents, and others as more and more runners come up behind him. 

Running cross country since middle school, Adam experimented his running skills between outside and on campus Harker practices but decided to continue Harker practices. Despite the competition within running, Adam reflects on how the team environment and the changes around him, like the team changing every year and adjusting to each team, affect his mindset and motivation.

“Cross country is individual but the team environment is also a big part of it especially on days we’re not doing as much and the people you’re around really motivate you to keep working hard,” Adam said.

Unique among other team sports, cross country fosters a supportive team environment while encouraging runners to focus on themselves at their own pace. Adam devotes himself to the team environment in cross country and works hard on training himself for the individual aspect of the sport.  

Even after a long day of racing and practice, Adam dedicates himself to schoolwork and friendships, a balance that close friend Matthew Goetting (12) commends. In particular, Adam’s determination impresses him. 

“He’s very focused, and he puts a lot of effort into things you’re passionate about, and he’s very self driven,” Matthew said, “Also about cross country, I’m very impressed by his drive because he told me on the weekends, he runs five miles. I could never; I can’t do that.”

Outside practices and games, Adam considers others’ ideas and works well discussing them in groups in his Calculus C class. He takes those ideas and puts them into place, focusing on completing them. Upper school mathematics department chair Anthony Silk admires Adam’s persistence in working on his tasks consistently.

“He’s a really hard worker, really will get into the problem, really trying to get through it and very dedicated,” Silk said. “So he’s one of these people in class that you, at this point, even four weeks in which, you notice he’s not super emotional about things, but clearly very dedicated.”

Adam’s consistent involvement whether in his regular academic classes or extracurriculars motivates him to do his best. Concentrating with the task at hand, Adam strives to work on himself if ever something troubles him. 

“Having faith in yourself that you can continue running is kind of nice because usually when you’re not injured you can work hard and see results quickly and it’s good that it’s individual and so you really rely on yourself,” Adam said.

Despite focusing on himself while running, Adam puts his mind in helping his teammates whenever he can. When a teammate was injured during practice, he both supported his recovering teammate and boosted the overall morale of his team, encouraging them to keep running. Whether inside or outside of running, Adam dedicates his time to others before himself.

In both cross country and the school environment, Adam has fun with and supports his teammates and friends. After knowing Adam for a decade, close friend Ryan Barth (12) notes Adam’s reliability and comfortableness when with him.

“He’s very reliable and he makes light of difficult situations,” Ryan said. “So it’s very common, but comforting to be with him. I think part of that probably comes with the fact that I’ve known him for 10 years so he’s almost like a brother.”

Cross country and running comes with challenges and obstacles along the way, like everyone passing by and trying to catch up to them, but Adam finds a way around those. He keeps going and frames his mindset on improving for the future. Adam explicates on how challenges should be handled.

For the races Adam participates in, the outcomes of his hard work and commitment are shown through him running in practice everyday and racing. His persistence and ability to change gives him more confidence and opportunities to learn from. 

“You kind of have to just learn to move on and accept results, that are for the team, are going to be what they’re going to be, so just try and do your best,” Adam said.

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About the Contributor
Connie Xu
Connie Xu, TALON Reporter
Connie Xu (10) is a reporter for the TALON Yearbook, and this is her second year on staff. She hopes to interact and share memories with other staff on the journalism team. In her free time, she likes to sing and dance, talk with friends, listen and watch K-pop songs and sometimes draw.

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