Athlete Feature: Pinkerton’s Pat Bastek

When did you start running?

I was a sprinter my freshman year in Indoor and Outdoor Track. The following summer I decided to train for Cross Country after being encouraged by a few friends on the team.

Briefly describe the experience as a member of your team/program.  Give an example of some of the “fun” stuff your team does together.

Being a member of the Long Red Line at Pinkerton Academy is like having a second family. The team atmosphere is spectacular, and it really knits us together. We don’t do activities together regularly since we are busy student-athletes, but a couple weekend days a month we hang out and strengthen our bond. We do have many traditions that do happen regularly and add a lot of fun to the program which keeps it enjoyable as well as productive.

How does your coach motivate you?

My coach is incredibly enthusiastic and creates an awesome environment with a lot of positive mental attitude to keep us going strong.

What motivates you most to do well?

My strive for success in simply anything I do motivates me to do well. I try to be on top whenever I can, and this pushes me to work hard.

What is your favorite workout?

My favorite workout is 8x1000m with all negative splits and one hammer. It’s a hard workout, but it suits my body’s training style very well.

What is your favorite cross training activity?

My favorite cross training activity is definitely swimming. I am not a great swimmer, so I don’t have to be in the water long to get my heart rate up opposed to if I was biking.

What is your go-to prerace meal?

Around 3 hours to 3.5 hours before my race, I have a bagel with peanut butter and a banana. It has a almost perfect 3:1 carb to protein ratio, and the peanut butter fat isn’t enough to affect me like it may for some.

Do you have a favorite prerace song?

I don’t have a favorite prerace song. Before races I just try to stay focused and avoid any distractions so that when the gun goes off, all I am thinking about is leaving it all out there.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?

If I could go anywhere in the world, I would go to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. It would be a sweet experience to go snorkeling and scuba diving there, which I enjoy doing both very much.

What would you do if you knew you could not fail?

If I knew I could not fail, I would do whatever I could to improve other people’s lives. There wouldn’t be much joy in doing things for myself because a big part of it is the satisfaction of earning it. If I knew I couldn’t fail, then there wouldn’t be anything earned by doing it for myself. I would use the situation to its advantage and help groups in need all around the world.

What is the best advice ever given to you?

The best advice ever given to me is that whatever has happened is in the past and there is nothing you can do to change it. The only option you have is to learn from it and move on.

What is your favorite quote?

“The will to win is meaningless without the will to prepare!” –Juma Ikaanga

What is your favorite thing about Cross Country?

My favorite thing about Cross Country is the family atmosphere my team has that makes it such a great time to be at practice and really love the sport.

What is your favorite course to run? (High school courses)

My favorite course is Franklin Park in Boston, MA. Every year my team does a trip down there for the Catholic Memorial Invitational. I find the course really fun to race as well as beautiful.

What is your favorite race outside of the high school season?

My favorite race outside of high school is the 3000m steeplechase even though I have never run it personally. I know it is an incredibly hard event, but it suits my interests. I definitely want to run it in college.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years???

In 5 years, I see myself as a senior at a D1 or D2 college getting a degree in exercise physiology. I’m not sure on what college yet, nor am I positive on the degree, but I am excited regardless. I imagine myself doing well in both academics and athletics as well as having a great group of friends from the team. I also hope to keep in good contact with my old high school teammates because I wish to be friends with them for life.  

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