Obviously, you’re a brand-new runner. But, before you begin your first run with the team, perhaps you wonder, “What’s all this cross country stuff about?!” This page will hopefully help answer your questions.

Social and Emotional Benefits

Opportunity to meet new people (grades 9-12)

El Toro High has a coed program. We have averaged 100 to 120 boys and girls on the cross country team for over the past ten years.

Many social events occur during the summer and the season (July to November). Some examples include beach outings, pool parties, team spaghetti dinners (called “Pasta Party”), and annual overnight trips.

Mental Benefits

Cross Country traditionally attracts academically successful students. The average grade-point average is usually over a 4.0 for our varsity team members.

Many of our athletes are scholar-athletes and have consistently been among the top 30% of their classes with the highest GPA varsity sport on campus.

The sport of cross country demands mental toughness. Workouts and races are mentally challenging. Each race is run over a different course, with different athletes, constantly testing how strong your mind truly is.

Physical Benefits

Everyone participates in every race. There is no “bench” for you to sit on – no one
watches. Cross country is a participation sport. The two main focuses of our program are:

  • Team improvement
  • Individual improvement.

Winning is a by-product of improvement and hard work.

Everyone will see a physical improvement in their performance during the season.

Athletes are developed and brought along at their own pace and treated as individuals.

Our program is geared to learning and having fun as a 9th and 10th graders (many get serious as a 10th grader and are encouraged to concentrate on CC and Track), to compete successfully and develop into a mature runner as an 11th and 12th grader.


Athletes are a microcosm of life. Often times the qualities we strive for as human beings are often being played before our very eyes on the sports field. Thus we are the tool of athletics, in practice and competition, to instruct our team members to develop the very qualities that are conducive to a successful cross country runner.


We believe that each athlete is a unique individual with God-given worth, talent, and potential. It is the coach’s goal and responsibility to challenge each athlete to discover his/her abilities and to reach his/her full potential.  During this process, emphasis will be focused upon the following qualities of character development in order to reach an athlete’s full potential: dedication, commitment, self-discipline, and communication.

Dedication – Cross country takes time, long time so you must stay patient. Time to learn, time to train, time to rest and recover, time away from family and friends. This focus of attention on one’s time toward cross country can best be described as being dedicated to the sport of cross country.

Commitment – Being a member of the El Toro Cross Country team carries other expectations and responsibilities. Doing what is expected of every team member is called commitment. Adhering to the policies and procedures of the team, scheduling appointments, and other interests outside of practice time is the heart of your commitment to Charger Cross Country.  You will need to learn to manage your time.  Some things will have to be sacrificed.  What you sacrifice will depend on how important cross country is to you.  If cross country is not your priority, do not drag others down.

Self-discipline – Personal training that develops self-control, character, obedience, orderliness, and efficiency in one’s life.

Communication – A part of the commitment that is expected by an athlete to his coaching staff. If a problem or illness forces an athlete to miss a practice or a meet, he is expected to communicate directly to the coach through XC Stats (do not relay messages through a teammate or a friend – often times the coach will not receive the message).

Openness and honesty are the best policies. Remember, coaches have an athlete’s best interest at heart.

Other qualities that will be a natural by-product of our program are:

  • loyalty to team
  • developing confidence and self-esteem
  • respect for others
  • sportsmanship
  • developing mental toughness
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