South East High School

Rosa Romo runs her last year for Students Run Los Angeles

How does it feel to have finished? Romo completed this year’s LA marathon in 6 hours and 8 minutes.

Breathing hard, feet hurting, just a few miles left. Rosa Romo, a senior in the Tech & Media magnet, has been running for five years, and this year’s Los Angeles marathon will be her last with Students Run Los Angeles.  

Romo started running for SRLA in the 8th grade for Southeast Middle School. She became a runner looking to invest her time in a hobby.

“It seemed really interesting to me, to do something that requires so much time and it just really spoke to me,” Romo said.

Being a runner is demanding of time and effort; the LA marathon is a grueling 26.2 mile run.  Romo’s five years of experience pays off, with a 5 hour and 45 minute marathon time from her previous year. Her goal for this year’s marathon was to maintain or possibly break her time from last year.  

“Time-wise, my first year I did 7 hours. My second and third year, it was 6 hours and 35 minutes,” Romo said.

As a runner, Romo stands out to her coach.  

“They’ve been running with me all four years.  They’re very positive,” her coach Rodriguez said. 

According to Romo, Rodriguez is “very strict. [She] wants [the team] to be focused and to prioritize [being a runner] because if [they] don’t, then [they] won’t be prepared for the day of the race.”

Romo shows her dedication to SRLA in showing up to all practices on time and telling her coach in advance if she can’t be.  She shows she’s not in SRLA solely for the rewards, but for its fun.

“She wants us to show that we’re dedicated, as well as to show that we want to do this and not just because of certain things that we get.  She wants to see that we’re really into it,” Romo said.

Once SRLA runs the LA marathon, their season is over. Romo has grown close to the freshmen on the team and has been running with them.  Though it is Romo’s last year, the team bond will likely stay strong even postseason.  

“At first, you’re kind of careful, but you get used to the people and you form a strong bond with them,” Romo said.

—by Janice Chavez