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Elena Guevara: A Rookie Wheelchair Racer

Original article posted in Alabama Runners, a affiliate-

If you have seen Good Hope High School compete this year, chances are you may have noticed Elena Guevera.  She is always in a heat by herself.  She currently is the only competitor in the state with a performance in the wheelchair 100m, 200m, and 400m.

How long have you been competing in Track & Field?  Do you compete in any other sports? This is my first year competing in track and field and also my first sport to compete in.

What got you interested in joining the track team? Well my brother participated in track and field when he was in school so I felt like if he could do it I could to. He was inspirational.

What events do you compete in?  Favorite Event?

100m,200m,400m, and shot put. My favorite event is the 400m

Is there anything different about the way you train than anyone else on your team?  What is the typical workout like?

Yes because I work out my arms and upper body more as opposed to an athlete not in a wheelchair working lower body conditioning.  When the weather is nice Coach Heaton works with me on my events at the track and when the weather is bad we works in the hallways of our high school.

I know the Lakeshore Foundation has been helping you out along the way.  Can you explain a little bit about who they are and what they do?

Lakeshore is an awesome place. They help all wheelchair athletes with training equipment and things like that. Mary Allison Cook has been a great help to me. She is also in a wheelchair.

What are your short term and long term goals for track & field?  Have you thought about competing in Indoor Track?

I want to be a state champion wheelchair athlete for Good Hope High School. I would like to continue track in college.

What do you want people to know about Wheelchair Racing?

I didnt know anything about it a year ago. Now I'm competing and love it.I just want more people to know and be aware that wheelchair athletics are out there.  I would also like to thank Coach Heaton, he is a great coach and I couldnt have done this without his help. I would also like to thank my aide at school Mrs. Runkel for her help.

The Lakeshore Foundation is a non-profit organization which serves people with physical disabilities throughout Alabama, across the country and around the world. Since 1984, Lakeshore has helped advance and promote the impact of positive, long-term physical and emotional effects of physical fitness on people with disabilities. From infants to seniors, to injured soldiers and elite-level athletes, every participant is free to discover his or her own potential. For more information on the Lakeshore Foundation please see their website at LAKESHORE.ORG


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