Finding Love Between Long Distances

Trey and Alexa Rios share one common passion; running long distances, just like their family before them.


Photo courtesy of Hector Rios

Senior Trey Rios gallops past several competitors at the Bishop Carroll Meet at Lake Afton near Cheney. Trey came in 3rd place, with a time of 17:11.

Khaliah Dryden, Bullseye staff reporter

22 months apart. 5K training. One shared love. That’s the best way to explain the relationship between Trey and Alex Rios.

Trey Rios, senior, and Alexa Rios, junior, both run track and cross country at Maize South. The two siblings both seek to place at state this year individually and earn team points for their school.

“My goal is for this year to hopefully get in the top 3 at state and then hopefully as a team, we should be able to get in the top 3 at state as well,” said A. Rios. “My goal for future plans is to hopefully run in college, and hopefully get the school record next year.” 

For some people, running is not something they particularly enjoy, but for Trey and Alexa it’s a different story. One day it’s a love-hate relationship, the next they both are pounding the pavement hoping to place at their next meet.

“Running is a love and hate relationship, there are times you really love it and that’s usually the easy runs where you get to go have fun with your friends and you can talk the entire time,” said T. Rios. “And then there are the times when you really hate it, which is where it hurts and when your doing those hard workouts, it’s a love hate relationship.”

Alexa is aware of the physical battle that’s paired with the mental aspect of the race. Trey is able to push through knowing the finish line is close and to give that last little bit of gas to finish.

Junior Alexa Rios is running at Rimrock. Alexa placed 4th and ran a time of 18:54. Photo courtesy of Hector Rios.

“Most people think it’s physically challenging but in my head, it’s mostly the mental side of it,” said A. Rios “ Because trying to stay mentally positive throughout a whole entire 5k is very challenging, because if you’re mentally not there, then you’re physically not gonna be there, so trying to really stay positive during a race, and acting confident, and knowing to like think and run smart while you’re running the race.” 

Running distance races is common practice for the Rios family. Both parents ran in high school competitively, and their aunt has even qualified for the Olympics at one point.

“Running began really I mean going into middle school my 7th grade year, my dad really encouraged me to go out for cross country since he was always good at it and I guess that’s kinda where it fell into place and I think I’ve done pretty well since then,” said T. Rios.

Trey even enjoys competing against his father when the moment calls for a friendly family competition.

“We do, my dad and used to have little race off sometimes when I was really little and we’d be leaving the store and we’d race to the car and that even still carried over until today, and while it’s gotten a little bit more uneven with who’s faster than the other we still are pretty competitive about it,” said T. Rios.