Some young athletes may take the summer off, but that's not for a group of East Texas track kids. About 60 kids with the Whitehouse-Tyler Metro Track Club have sacrificed much of their free time for fitness and they're celebrating Fit City success.
A relay team and a high jumper found Fit City success at the Texas Amateur Athletic Games of Texas, competing with 3,000 other athletes.
Four girls in the 11-to-12 age group brought home silver in the 4x100 relay and a Chapel Hill sophomore won bronze in the high jump after logging hours on the track this summer with the Whitehouse-Tyler Metro Track Club.
Four days a week for more than two hours each evening in the summer, you will find Austin Railsback on the Whitehouse High School track.
"It is the only thing I think about: competing and running, jumping and track," Railsback said. "It's my No. 1 love."
He's not alone. The 4x100 relay team — Serenity Johnson, Keairra Christopher, Chasity Taylor and Kaila Hall — already have sprinted many miles on the Whitehouse track this summer.
"We will do like six 300s, and then we will do like sleds," Miss Christopher said. "It's where you get weights, and it is on this sled. You have to put it on your waist and you have to run 100 yards. That makes their legs stronger and their drive unstoppable."
"Words can't express, when you have an athlete come out in this kind of temperature and spend their whole summer instead of sitting around playing video games and watching cartoons," Tutu Brown, their coach, said. "They put it out here on the track says a lot."
Brown said dedication is obvious. Only two days a week are mandatory, but they ask for two more.
"The commitment is that you have to work hard, everyday. You can't be a girly girl, ya know because you've got to sweat," Miss Christopher said.
"They really, really push you," Railsback said.
That helped Railsback jump 6 feet 4 inches at state.
"But they are always encouraging, always uplifting and trying to help you out," he said.
When the young athletes leave the track, there's no slacking off.
"You have to eat right. Let's see, a lot of protein, like protein shakes. I just love fruit," Miss Christopher said.
"I don't eat candy or drink any caffeine," Railsback said.
It's discipline that the up- and-coming track stars hope will bring them more medals.
Brown said his athletes main goals are to train and perform well enough for a track scholarship. That's their ultimate Fit City success.