Tyler Strycula

How am I growing in my own awareness of my strengths and weaknesses?

Cross Country

This cross country season has definitely been the most rewarding season yet especially in terms of realizing my strengths and weaknesses. No sport is so grueling yet so rewarding. It makes you aware of your limits and gives you the freedom to push those limits. I have found that pushing myself through hard practices got easier and easier the harder I ran each day. I knew going into this season that diet was going to be extremely important and was a weak point for me the season before. However, I dug in a came out victorious in the end. Cross country tests more than your physical endurance, it also demands full mental respect and pushes your senses to work harder than most other sports.

What challenges have I been through?

Cross Country

I met many challenges this this season. A strange knee injury hindered my ability to run to the best of my ability. Commonly called IT Band syndrome, this injury put me through a lot of pain and didn’t allow me to complete practices to my liking. As a matter of fact, it caused me to run one of the worst races of my cross-country career. However, as my knee got stronger and the practices got more intense, I managed to run a race for my personal record of 17:42. In the end, the hinderances of this season taught me to perservere and continue to work with what I had.

In what ways have I started new challenges?

Cross Country

Getting my personal record this year has definitely created new challenges because it tells me how much potential i have and anything less than that will be unacceptable. So continuing to push the boundaries will be a great challenge in years to come and especially track season coming up.

In what ways have I developed new skills?

Cross Country

Running has been a skill that has taken time to acquire. It was never easy either. However, a new skill I’ve attained is definitely the ability to work through difficult situations. Unexpected injuries may come up, but you can’t let them hinder your performance unless they’re a threat to your health. Being the captain of the team has also given me newfound leadership skills that will help me in my continuing journey to success.

In what ways have I shown perseverance and commitment to my activities?

Cross Country

Besides the fact that I am taking very rigorous courses, my captains position on the team shows that I have persevered in running in the last three years. Running through injuries is also never an easy thing and my capability of making it to every practice and eight full meets shows that I am a very reliable team player.

In what ways have I worked collaboratively?

Cross Country

Sharing the captain position with two other people has definitely allowed me to work collaboratively with others and my teammates. We may not have all agreed on the practice routines, but somehow we worked out a decision peacefully every time. It’s also taught us that you won’t get what you want every time but you have to respect the decisions made even if they’re not in your favor.

In what ways have I been engaged in issues with global importance?

What are the ethical or moral implications of what I’m doing and learning?

Cross Country

I think its the fact that I am able to run is why it is so appealing. There are so many people less fortunate that I am that have disabilities hindering their physical abilities. One has to feel lucky that they are able to freely run wherever they want and take advantage of it because one day they might not be able to.

Service 1/20/2014

During the holidays I participated in the Holiday Meal Deliveries for Christ Church of the Valley. It required me driving to houses of the less fortunate people in the area to take them meals for their families, and I have to say I don’t think I have ever had a more rewarding experience. It showed me that you don’t have to travel to help people because they’re are people that need your help perhaps down your very own street. One of the houses I visited was occupied by a mother and five other children. It was a tiny apartment complex with one bedroom and I couldn’t help but feel so guilty for the privileges that I think are necessities. It goes to show that everything is worth the price and the value of a dollar is extremely important. Overall, this experience has helped me realize the amenities I surround myself with and how unimportant some of them truly are. I never take things for granted any longer.

Action 1/20/2014

The 2013 cross country season came and went so quickly. It put me through so many trials and challenges and yet its what I love the most about the sport. No other sport teaches you your limits so quickly and pushes you past those limits endlessly. This year was particularly difficult to me especially in the summer due to an unexpected knee injury. Commonly called IT Band syndrome, this injury hindered me from running to my full potential in the most critical time of the season. As a matter of fact it caused me to run the worst race of my cross country career.However, as my knee got stronger and the practices became more intense, I found it starting to get easier. I pushed myself past the breaking point and managed to run a race for my personal record of 17:42. This goes to show that even major hinderances can end up being your road to success.
My captains spot on the team has helped me gain newfound leadership skills that will help me in my continuing journey to success. It helped me collaborate and build sportsmanship and will continue to help me in the upcoming track season. Sharing this captains spot with two other people has without a doubt shaped my ability to handle disputes carefully and peacefully especially when deciding runs to do for practice. Also, managing to go to every practice and eight full meets demonstrates perseverance and commitment to the team. One of the greatest moments of this year was finishing the Woodbridge Invitational in Costa Mesa and coming through the finish line and reading the clock at a 17. I won my first medal that race. I’ll never forget that feeling because it just makes me want to work even harder.
Overall, this cross country season will never be forgotten because I’ve learned the most about myself and managed to push myself past limits that I never believed I could.

Service 5/29/2013

I worked with Blankets of Love at Charter Oak on February 7th and 8th for Key Club. It was a great experience that I had with my friends and it felt great being able to make a blanket for those in need. It took a long time just to make two blankets but it was well worth all the time and work. It taught me that even people near us are in need and not just those in other countries.

Action 5/29/2013

The entirety of my baseball season has taught me many things. Amongst these lesson learned I have made many friends and made many new experiences. Throughout the season, it is very fun to see how far you and your team have come and how much better your skills become. Even if you don’t win as many games as you’d wished, you still learn to love the game. One of my favorite sayings is “A bad day at the ballpark is better than a good day anywhere else.” I think this applies greatly to this baseball season because even though we didn’t win that much, we had so much fun playing that we forgot about winning and played to have fun. My favorite game just so happened to be our first win of the season. It was against Ayala High School and after 11 straight losses we finally managed to win our first game with a final score of 5 to 4. It was such a great feeling and I could feel the positive energy throughout the whole team. This positive energy then flowed into our second game when we beat Ayala again 6 to 3. Overall, this season not only put me in a great physical state, but it also made me value teamwork more and supported my ability to work with others.

Creative 5/29/2013

I volunteered to usher at the Covina Center of the Performing Arts (CCPA) in January. I went in at around 6 o’clock and was greeted by the most friendly of people who told me exactly what I had to do. My job was to show people to their seats at the beginning of the show. The show was called “The Honky Tonk Angels.” It was about three unlikely women who meet and go to Hollywood to pursue their careers as singers. Overall this experience was very beneficial to me as it taught me patience and also bettered my social skills. I learned that you have to be willing to step out of your comfort zone to meet new people and lend a helping hand whenever possible.

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