Sunday, July 12, 2020
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Hurdling Past the Competition

Courtesy of UCI Media Athletics
Courtesy of UCI Media Athletics


Courtesy of UCI Media Athletics
Courtesy of UCI Media Athletics

Standing 6 feet tall, Sophomore Megan George towers over most of the women’s hurdles athletes.

Combined months of training and natural skill, George broke the UCI record with a time of 13.51 seconds at the Big West Conference Track & Field Championships, marking. UCI’s first 100-meter Big West championship.

She credits the main reason of her ongoing success to the amount of motivational words she receives. As cliché as that sounds, her start in hurdles actually started with a few encouraging phrases.

Growing up as a child, George was always competitive. She was always running around trying to race her older brother. Although her brother would beat her almost every time, she always ran a close race. At the age of seven, her dad saw the competitive spirit in her and encouraged her to run for track in a local track club.

She has been running forward since then.

Fast-forward to high school and her coach saw her running during her track practice. It was her junior year when he approached her and encouraged her to practice hurdles with him in the mornings as well as the afternoons to develop her skill. He saw potential in her that she didn’t see in herself and he invested in her to make her the best she could be.

Now, as she runs hurdles at the collegiate level, she says she has improved a lot since her first year.

“I trained harder this year than when I trained my freshman year because my coach encouraged me continuously. He was always telling me ‘you can do it!’ or ‘you have a lot in you!’ which really gave me the motivation I needed.” George said.

George likes the extra boost her coach gives her and it really brings her out of her shell and enables her to see herself in a way she couldn’t before imagine.

“When someone encourages me and says I can be great, I have to go out there and see for myself. I don’t really believe that I can be great until I go out there and accomplish what I thought I couldn’t.” George said.

Her confidence continues to grow as coaches, players, and friends continue to cheer and believe in her. Now she is starting to realize that she actually can do well and is confident in her improvements. Her record setting time definitely reflects her growing boldness.

Off the tracks, George barely has any extra time for herself because she devotes all of her time running and improving her skillsets. When she does find a few minutes to breathe, she spends them on Netflix.

She continues to strive for excellence in her time, form, and training to meet specific goals she has set for herself each year.

“Every year, I like to try something new. Last year I dyed my hair and after that, I got my nose pierced.” George said.

Similarly, she sets new goals she wants to reach within the hurdles sport and as of lately, she has been ahead of schedule. Two goals she set for herself to accomplish before her collegiate career was over was to win the Big West Championship and to beat the school record. Since she has now achieved these two goals within her first two years of college, the future doesn’t seem as daunting. Given, she is already in the lead.