Parent Guide


This is the most important aspect of the coach-athlete relationship, and it should hold true for parents and coaches as well. Please do not hesitate to reach out to any of the coaches with questions, concerns or suggestions.

Best ways to get involved

Transportation. Parents are often called upon to help transport athletes to meets and off-site practice. This is easiest and most helpful way to get involved!

Volunteer work. We often volunteer at major Chicago road races - such as the Chicago Marathon and Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon – to fundraise for each year. Extra hands are always appreciated.

Team Spirit. Come cheer us on! Runners can use all the help they can get when the race is underway. Parents are always welcome to spectate.

Academics and other Extracurricular Activities

Academics are the most important aspect of any student athlete’s life. Any athlete who does not maintain good academic standing (and attendance) will not compete as a Lincoln Park Lion.

While we encourage any student to pursue their passions, the reality of this sport is that missing practice is dangerous. Each workout lays foundation for the next workout, and without that foundation, athletes are ripe for injuries. For this reason, we require our athletes to practice five days a week.

Gear and Equipment

The most important thing a runner owns is his or her shoes. These are the first line of defense against injury.  It is extremely important that each athlete receives a proper fitting at a devoted running store. Fleet Feet, Universal Sole, or Roadrunner Sports are all acceptable vendors.

Of course, we understand that shoes aren’t cheap. After receiving a proper fitting, cheaper vendors are available online once you know what shoe is right for you.

The second most important piece of running gear is a watch. Each runner is required to wear one at practice. Fancy and expensive watches aren’t necessary, just has to have a stopwatch!

Cross Country and Track Meets

Cross country and track meets can take several hours depending on how many races. You should plan on being present at the meet for anywhere from 4-7 hours, depending on the meet’s size.

Training and Coaching Philosophy

To the uninitiated, cross country and track and field training at this level can look intimidating. No athlete is ever required to jump into full training without the proper foundation or preparation.

Every athlete receives training specifically tailored to his or her needs. New athletes work on the foundations of the sport (good running form and basic strength work) before launching into varsity-level training.

It is important that as parents you trust our judgments regarding training and development. We are experts in our field and want to develop these students into the best athletes they can be. Our door is always open for questions and concerns. Please don't hesitate to reach out to us!