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Word Count: 654
An exceptional education through self-determination may has many positive opportunities as well as negative such as the common application of stress and the pressure everyday to do ones best in every class and on every test Personally the weight of six advanced placement courses in my sophomore year left my mind weary and daily planner full It became painfully obvious that if I was going to perform my junior year on the same level of excellence I would have to find an outlet to channel my mind I believe I found the perfect cure as I switched sports from basketball to cross country The first day of practice was spent out on the open-road related to the open-mind as I just relaxed and let the six miles of open road run itself It felt amazingly exhilarating as the long run came to an end Generally in the mornings I was tired but the running actually gave me more energy as I started my normal classes at 955 in the morning The long independent journeys left me ready to do well on papers as I had already conquered a fast-run that morning The meets that I attended on Saturdays at various parks throughout the metroplex excited me thoroughly I had a specific goal when I entered these meets to do my best and have no regrets Now this is a special sport which requires the mind to have complete control over the body because if one can control the great amounts of pain associated with running five thousand meters at the cost of tears at the end of the race they could in fact be the best The races would start out with a long horizontal line filled with the best runners grouped by the school at which they attend Whoever won these races was the best so pride became a great issue as everyone wanted to get to the finish line in the quickest amount
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