Q&A Interview: Carson Klepinger

(Carson Klepinger finished 20th in the Sweepstakes Race at Desert Twilight.-photo by Alan Versaw)

Name: Carson Klepinger
School: Mesa Mountain View
Grade: Senior
Carson started off his season with a bang last weekend by winning the Senior race at the Chandler Invitational for the 2nd year in a row. Last season, he ran 15:41 at Desert Twilight and placed 15th in the D1 Boys race at the State Championships. He also holds PRs of 4:31.24 for 1600m and 9:48.79 for 3200m on the track. Carson will be racing at the Fountain Hills Invitational this weekend.
Where are you from and when did you begin running?
I'm from Mesa Arizona. I started running when my 7th grade gym teacher told me to come out for XC. So, I joined the XC team, won the middle school city championship, then the rest is history. I just fell in love with the sport.
What is your favorite workout?
Man, that's a tough one. I really like doing interval work. For example, one of my favorite workouts would be 5x1200m @5k pace then ending with like four quick 400s at mile pace.
What is your favorite memory of cross-country over your high school career?
My freshman year our XC team took second place at state. Even though we didn't win, it was still awesome that we were able to come together and work hard as a team and capture a trophy at the State Meet.
(below: The 2014 Toro XC boys took 2nd at State Champs with 96 pts.-photo by John Hays)
Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions?
Haha honestly not really. The nights before races our team puts on a pasta dinner and it's awesome to hang out with the guys and have some fun before we race the next morning.
What do you like to eat after a race?
I can never go wrong with a Five Guys post-race cheeseburger.
Do you have any role models on the team or from years past?
I've had some awesome teammates throughout high school, but I really look up to Coach Ronnie Buchanan. He really knows his stuff and has taught me to look past the trial of miles and find the joy in the art of distance running.
What's the best advice or key lesson you've taken from them?
Ronnie emphasizes the principle that if we can work hard while having fun with our teammates in this sport, we will be successful in whatever we do in life.
(Carson finished 15th at the D1 Cross Country State Championships last year.-photo by John Hays)
If you could do a long run with any professional runner, who would it be?
Galen Rupp seems like a cool guy and he's a champion so that would be sick to go on a jog with him.
What's your favorite subject in school?
I really like to write and express myself through words so I would definitely say my favorite subject is English.
What's something we don't know about you outside of running?
Honestly, I'm pretty boring outside of distance running. I really like to cook and hang out with friends on the weekends.
Will you be racing any post-season meets?
Yeah! I'm for sure running southwest and probably footlocker regionals.