Student-Athletes Discuss Training, Traveling, and Passing Time Over Break

While most students arrived back on campus one or two days before classes started for the spring semester, some student-athletes came weeks earlier in order to practice and compete. That means that some athletes who compete in the winter, such as swimmers, had only one short week of winter break.

Senior and Men’s Swimming & Diving captain Zach Duthie said he was happy to be with the team rather than at home during break due to so many bonding opportunities with the team. Duthie is a religion and economics concentrator from Fort Washington, P.A. He explained that part of his reasoning was due to the team’s training trip to California. 

“Going to California was really fun. Basically we go up, stay in a hotel really close to the pool we swim at and there’s a bunch of really nice restaurants around, like Chipotle, and some other more local places— Italian and Mexican. We were also about a 30-second walk from the beach so we’d swim usually twice a day and we lifted as well but we’d also have free time every day to go to the beach. I think some people even went down to San Diego. I think it definitely brings the team a lot closer together and it’s always a lot of fun.”

While being on campus itself is not as lively during break, Duthie and the rest of the swim team managed to enjoy their time.

“It’s really fun [being on campus with only a few teams]. We don’t really hang out with other teams, maybe we’ll see them every once and awhile but we mostly hang out amongst ourselves. We’ll watch movies together or we play this game called “Bodies” [which is] kind of like Mafia. We’ll go bowling sometimes and other stuff like that. We definitely find a way to pass the time. I also think […] that people appreciate having some time to focus on swimming without school and other social stuff getting in the way.”

The Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving team was not the only team that came to campus early. Men’s and Women’s Track and Field arrived in early January after spending their shortened break training individually. Malcolm Kron is a first-year on track and cross-country from Hoboken, N.J. and explained what this time spent before arriving on campus was like.

“Before we came back to school we were just doing practice by ourselves. We were given a set number of miles or hours to run each week and you’d fulfill that by fitting in two workouts and two long runs [per week]. Mostly we were just working on hitting mileage and making sure everyone was in shape for the meets.”

Regular practice resumed when the team returned to campus and soon after the team had two meets.

“Our first meet was at Cornell. Then we went to New York [City]. That meet was at a place called The Armory and on [the day before our races] we were able to go and check it out and do a little bit of running there, then have the rest of the day to explore the city. Then we were awake by 7:00 or 8:00 a.m. the next morning depending on […] when you were leaving for the meet. Then the meet was all day Friday.”

As with Duthie and the Swimming & Diving team, Kron and the Track & Field team were able to make the most of the quiet time spent on campus.

“[The team] play[s] a lot of Catan, we play a game called Town of Salem, [and] watch a lot of TV.”

Some teams came back later than swim and track, meaning much of their break was spent training individually at home. Danielle Rosner is a first-year on the softball team from Brewster, N.Y. who kept up her training while away from her team. 

“When I was home I did a lot of softball. Basically I went to the gym 4-5 times a week to lift with my lift partner and then I’d go have fielding lessons with my old coach. I’d also have hitting lessons twice a week so I definitely practiced a lot even when I was at home.”

Rosner and the rest of the Softball team came back a week before classes started to prepare as a team for the upcoming season. Like Duthie and Kron, she managed to make the most of the time spent on a relatively quiet campus.

“[When we came back from break] we [had] 2-3 hour practices 6 days of that week and we had lift twice that week. With just [our team] on campus with pretty bad weather we’d go out and eat as a team mostly. [The first years] went to New Hartford [N.Y] one day and [the team] went to our assistant coach’s house for dinner. We also got to go and watch a lot of the other team’s games, like basketball and hockey.”

While the thought of returning to school early may seem unpleasant to many, Colgate’s athletes show there is some fun to be had. Whether it be practicing together in California, competing in New York City or simply enjoying a meal together, the teams that spent time together during break made the most of it while preparing for their upcoming competitions.