Freshman Sportlight: Cross Country

Joshua Janusiak was named the Midwest Conference’s Performer of the Week after a spectacular showing at the Brissman-Lundeen invitational, held at Augustana College. Janusiak finished 70th in the 8,000-meter course, clocking in at 26:14.4. Fueled by his superb performance, Lawrence finished 19th in the invite, which was composed of 50 teams including Midwest Conference opponents. Lawrence beat every other participating Midwest Conference team.


Where are you from? What drew you to Lawrence?

I am from South Milwaukee, Wis. My coach suggested that I [should] visit [Lawrence].The Lawrence Cross Country team pulled me in; [We went] on a few runs, had some meals. They are all really cool people, so they got me hooked.


What was the feeling like when you heard you were named MWC Performer of the Week?

I was almost surprised. I just got here. I was very excited and happy, and it is a great new experience.


So, with a performance like that, one has to wonder what the routine is. How do you get psyched up?

It helps to run with people you like and people whom will support you. A great coach and family support is really good too. Running consistently is really important too, you just have to be devoted. I like to listen to pop music, it’s low-key enough that I don’t get over-excited for a five-mile race, but energetic enough that I keep my mind off the stress.


Obviously, you set the bar pretty high at the invite. How do you plan to keep this up?

I am just going to keep following the workout schedule. He [Coach Fast] knows more about me than I do, it seems. Under this training plan, and my coach, I will not doubt myself. It all comes down to pushing yourself in those last couple of miles, where you are really mentally tired.


What is one thing you are really looking forward to for the rest of this year?

There is so much [that] I don’t even know where to start. Lawrence has surprised me a lot in terms of the campus events outside of athletics. Athletics – wise, I’m really looking forward to the conference and regionals, wherever else I might go, and also track and field, because I have not experienced that in college yet.


How different does competing at Lawrence feel from competing in high school?

It feels more relaxed, which is what I wanted. I wanted to be able to focus on athletics and academics at the same time, and I think Lawrence has it balanced perfectly, where you feel like you have to get things done yourself.


How have your teammates helped you with your transition into the life of a collegiate student-athlete?

It helped a lot, especially during pre—season, when I got to go to Björklunden, and having contacts over the summer, in case I had any questions. It was a great support group to come into college with.