We got a chance to talk to Gatorade Michigan Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year, Grand Blanc junior, Grant Fisher, after a fantastic cross country season where he became just the fifth Michigander to win Foot Locker Nationals.
Read the Official Press Release Here
Michigan MileSplit: Coming into the fall did you expect to have the season you ended up having?
Grant Fisher: Coming into the fall, I never could have guessed what the season would hold. Up until then, I had always preferred track over cross country, so going into racing season I wasn’t quite sure how I would be able to stack up nationally. Before the season started, I had set a goal to make it to Footlocker nationals, but I never could have imagined how the race would turn out.
MI MileSplit: You smoked the race at Portage, is that when you started realizing that his season could turn in to something special?
GF: Portage was a huge turning point for me. I had been slowly easing into the season and had not put in an all-out effort for 5K yet. The race turned out better than I expected which was a huge confidence booster and it made my coaches and I very optimistic about the rest of the season.
MI MileSplit: You became the fifth "Michigander" to win Foot Locker. How does it feel to be in the same group as a Michigan legend like Dathan Ritzenhein?
GF: The feeling is pretty surreal at this point. I don’t think it has quite hit me that I accomplished something that a runner as great as Dathan did not so long ago. Just to be compared to some of the incredible runners that Footlocker has seen throughout the years is a dream come true.
MI MileSplit: Other than winning Foot Locker, what did you enjoy most about the experience?
GF: Getting to know the other athletes from around the country was the probably the best part. It was interesting to finally meet everyone that I had been constantly hearing about throughout the fall. It was kind of crazy to be surrounded by so many fast guys, but they were all really cool and easy to get along with. To get to know and race with such talented runners is an experience that I’ll never forget.
MI MileSplit: A lot of people may not know that you also play soccer in the fall. How crazy was a typical wekk for you between the two sports and school?
GF: Depending on the week, my schedule can get pretty packed. Normally I run either before or after school and also have a soccer practice after school. It can get kind of hectic trying to balance the two sports with schoolwork, but thankfully, both my soccer coaches and running coaches are very understanding and flexible.
MI MileSplit: What are some of your goals for this indoor season? What about outdoor?
GF: Because my cross country season extended later than usual, my training for track was delayed a couple of weeks. The indoor season will be pretty low key because our main focus this year is outdoor track. Grand Blanc’s track team has been runner-ups at states for the past two years, and I feel like we have an opportunity this year to win. I would really like to share a state championship with my teammates and coaches.
MI MileSplit: Have you started thinking about where you want to run once you are out of high school? If nothing else, looking to stay close to home, or somewhere warm?
GF: My coaches and I are just starting up the college process. We’re trying to stay open minded so we haven’t narrowed things down too much yet. I would prefer to be in a warmer climate, however that entails going to school further away from home. A lot of factors will go into the decision, and I’m really excited to see where I end up.
MI MileSplit: How/when did you get involved running cross country?
GF: I started running cross in 7th grade. I had been a soccer player my entire life, but both of my parents ran track in college, so they encouraged me to try running. It was great because we only ran about 10 miles a week, and a lot of my friends ran as well. Up until the summer after my freshman year, I wasn’t too serious about running, but after experiencing a state meet in track, I was hooked.
MI MileSplit: I heard your younger brother is beating your times at that age. Are the Fishers going to be a running dynasty by the time he's through high school?
GF: My little brother has a bright future! I could see Mark doing great things in whichever sport he chooses in a few years. It has been really cool to see him one-up my old times, and I’m looking forward to see what the next couple years hold for him.
MI MileSplit: Favorite gear to run in?
GF: Brooks trainers, Nike spikes
MI MileSplit: Winter or summer?
MI MileSplit: Favorite place for breakfast?
GF: My kitchen when my mom makes eggs and bacon!
MI MileSplit: Movie you just saw or want to see?
GF: Just saw Wolf of Wall Street