As a student-athlete at Rhode Island College I deal with the stress of juggling classes, indoor track practices and a part time job. I became a member of the indoor track team to stay in shape and to continue my dedication in track (I ran all four years of high school as a sprinter).
Being a sprinter on a college team demands tough workouts on a daily basis. The workouts are conducted in a positive environment where the coach and the other runners are supportive of each other.
A typical day for me, after attending classes, is to head to the track around 3:30 in the afternoon. Once the team is all accounted for, we start our warm-up. The warm-up consists of a 1/2 mile jog, followed by stretching. After the warm-up we start our drills. The drills consist of three sets of each of the following: high knees, butt kicks, kick-outs, straight legs, a backwards jog, moving jumping jacks, up and outs and finally strides. Doing these drills will help improve our coordination and balance. These drills are done everyday before the workouts and usually take about 25-30 minutes.
The workouts differ from week to week and day to day. On a typical day, we have around ten sprinters working out. Monday and Tuesday are the toughest days and Wednesday and Thursday are less grueling. Friday is our easiest day as we prepare for our meets. After we are completely done with practice, most of us will head to Donovan Dining Center to grab something to eat and talk about how well we just worked out and prepare for the upcoming meet.
Saturday is the day we finally get to compete. The indoor track team doesnt compete during the week, instead we travel to meets around New England every Saturday.
On Dec. 2, the team competed at the Brown University Invitational, where we competed against Division I teams [RIC is Division III]. Usually, a track meet lasts all day. That is because the men and women compete together, but not against each other. Mike Daniels had a great meet for us, placing first overall in the 800 meters. Tim Rudd placed second in the 3,000 meters. Matt Tarpy placed second in the high jump.
Finally, the week ends on Sunday, when the team gets together on its own and runs about 3-5 miles.
Being a part of the mens indoor track team is an experience. What I mean is that indoor track practices are very different from other sports practices. The members of the team push each other to work harder each and every day, pushing their bodies to the limit in the process.