The Campanile: Who are you and what’s your position on the cross country team?
Naveen Pai: I’m Naveen, and I’m a senior varsity runner.
TC: Alright Naveen, what’s your favorite part about cross country?
NP: My sweet legs.
TC: What about your legs?
NP: They’re very toned and defined, I would say.
TC: And do these toned legs help propel you to victory?
TC: Ok, as a Varsity runner, what hopes do you have for yourself and the team this season?
NP: Hopefully we’ll be able to win CCS and place top ten in states.
TC: What part will you miss the most about running for Paly’s cross country team over the past four years?
NP: The baby dino.
TC: Tell us more about what the baby dinosaur is like.
NP: He’s kind of a mysterious character, and boyishly good-looking. That’s really all you can say about him; even I don’t know him that well.
TC: Ok, so we know how much you love cross-country, but can you give us your opinion on the boys lacrosse team?
NP: We have a lacrosse team? Lacrosse is a sport? That’s strange.
TC: I’m just going to move on. If you had to pick one teammate to go into a zombie apocalypse with, who would you choose and why?
NP: Probably Kai Oda, because he has those super toned muscles, and he could just carry me through it.
TC: I would leave you there.
NP: *awkward silence*
TC: Do you see any difference in the crossover between the girls and boys cross country team with the new slogan, “one team,” introduced this year?
NP: Yes, I think our new mentality as a unified team has definitely helped our team chemistry.
TC: In what ways?
NP: For example, at our pasta feeds you can make connections by talking with other teammates you may not have known very well before, which helps build a connection in the team overall.
TC: Do you plan to run cross country after high school? If so, where and why?
NP: I’m actually training for an undercover CIA mission in Ethiopia, so that’s probably where my running career will continue.
TC: In Ethiopia, do you anticipate… I should actually stop it there. Um, do you have a spirit animal that motivates you to run?
NP: Once again, I would have to say the baby dino. He’s just so fierce, competitive and hungry.
TC: What do you think is the most important element to focus on for those trying to get better at running and why?
NP: I would just say staying committed and trying to get longer runs in to build a pace.
TC: How do you feel about the new coaches, Michael Davidson and Michael Granville? How have they changed cross country so far this year?
NP: They work us really hard and I can tell they have a plan for us. I think we have a promising future with them.
TC: Are there any things they’ve done differently?
NP: Yeah, we’re focusing more on longer workouts in the beginning, and are focusing a lot more on core, which is painful.
TC: How many abs do you have, Naveen?
NP: I lost count.
TC: Lastly, how do you stay focused during the season?
NP: I get really inspired by my cat, Rascal. He’s really dedicated and always reminds me to stay strong and keep pushing. He’s been a real source of motivation for me. In fact, I’m gonna end this interview because I want to go home to my cat right now.