By J1 Reporter Taylor Sterba
Early mornings are not an uncommon thing to sophomore Hannah Sedlacek, a second year member of the Marian swim team. A 5 a.m. alarm begins her strenuous day as a student athlete. After a healthy breakfast of peanut butter toast and an orange, one of her parents drops her off at Marian where, on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, morning workouts are held.
These morning workouts strengthen their abs, arms, and legs by core workouts and weight-lifting. Morning workouts take an hour of the girls’ starting at 6:10. For the girls who bring their breakfast to school, they will eat with each other after morning workouts as a way to do “…things together other than working out” and bond with each other, teammate Sally Noble said. That “…benefits us in meets because when you feel closer to your team, you want to succeed not only for yourself but for them,” Noble said.
Throughout the day, “I really don’t feel it until I’m actually in the water swimming,” Sedlacek says of her aching muscles. At the last bell, it is a rush to the door for Hannah to meet up with her junior carpool and teammate, Molly Steinauer. Afternoon practices begin every day at 4 at the University of Omaha, except on Saturdays when it begins at 8 a.m. After working through an easy set of 25s and 50s, the team will move on to a larger set of 100s and 200s, with a warm-down at the end to complete the two-hour practice.
Upon coming home, Sedlacek sits down to complete about an hour of homework, depending on the workload given during the day. If she does not receive plentiful sleep, Sedlacek says she is often “…very tired and grouchy. I’m very sluggish, like very slow,” describing her mood the following day.
The tired moods decrease when she is with her teammates because she knows that they are all experiencing the same fatigue and/or test of abilities. “Just being able to know they’re on the team too and you have something in common with them and you get to see them everyday,” Sedlacek said. On Mondays, the team will split off into groups to discuss their strengths and to give each other advice on sections of improvement. Within the close-knit team, not everything that they do revolves around actual swimming. Team dinners are planned a few days before each meet for a way for the girls to devour a sizable amount of pasta and socialize with each other outside of the chlorine. The Marian team puts in countless hours of work in the pool while diving into friendships throughout the season.