Meghan Heuer is no stranger to moving around.
She went to three different high schools. She’s been to two colleges. But all along there’s been one constant: running.
Heuer started running cross country in the seventh grade, and years later, she’s still running as a track and field athlete at Northern Illinois University. Her journey through secondary education took her from high school in Minnesota to Geneva High School to St. Charles North High School for her senior year. Then it was on to Kansas State University before a transfer back to the Land of Lincoln and NIU.
But all the while, running has been a mainstay.
“I’ve been doing it since the seventh grade. It’s been awhile since I’ve been doing it,” Heuer said. “It is a nice constant. It’s not just a sport, it makes you feel good, you like it. It’s something you like to do.”
While she might see it as something she likes to do, Heuer is pretty good, too. Wherever she goes, records start falling. She holds a school record at Kansas State, and she has been a member of several record-breaking relay teams since arriving in DeKalb. In February, she set a school record in the indoor mile (4:51.35). Just last month, she was part of a team that broke the 4x800-meter relay record by more than 20 seconds.
So with success on the track helping her easily adjust to every new surrounding, Heuer said there’s really not that much difference between all the different places she’s been.
“You still have to run your butt off every day and do all your work, do all your races, get your homework done. It’s about the same, any school you go to it’s going to be a balancing of two things,” Heuer said.
“It’s kind of interesting seeing the different ways that people coached. For example, Geneva was pretty intense, and then I moved to North and that was not quite as intense. It’s fun to meet new people and meet new coaches and see what they’re doing, too.”
Heuer is at NIU now because she’s closer to home, and she has plenty of goals for the future, from improving times on the track to heading into future studies of occupational therapy. But whatever the future holds, she seems to have that one constant always going for her.
“Track has been really fun in that it gives you something interesting to do you can really focus on,” she said.
• Vinnie Duber writes the weekly On Campus column for the Kane County Chronicle. If you have a column idea about area athletes competing in college, contact him at email@example.com.