The always stunning view from Mt Cardigan - pictured are Mts. Moose, Holt's Ledge, Winslow Ledge, and Smarts
« All Posts by this Blogger
Group photo of Dartmouth Triathlon Team

Sports are offered at Dartmouth at three primary levels: Division 1 Athletics, Club Sports, and Intramural Sports. The factor that distinguishes these three levels is essentially the level of time and commitment required to be a part of them. While Division 1 Athletics are at the highest collegiate level, Club Sports and Intramural Sports offer two alternatives if you still wish to compete or have fun (Club Sports here, Intramurals here). As someone who ran distance throughout highschool, and enjoyed it while getting close with my team, I knew I was interested in something similar upon arriving at Dartmouth. Thus, I investigated the endurance sport teams that are available, and joined (started with really—I'm interested in cycling and nordic skiing too!) the Triathlon Team. 

First of all, getting involved in the Team—and any sport or club—was super easy throughout the Term. The only "paperwork" I really had to do was join the Team on the online platform "Dartmouth Groups" and register for a Physical Education credit (If you even call this "paperwork." Also, a certain number of PE credits is required to graduate, so I used Triathlon to fulfill one).  

During any given training week, there can be approximately eighteen practices—yes, eighteen! The sheer volume comes from the fact that becoming proficient in swimming, biking, and running requires a ton of practice (Link to my blog post on swimming). Mondays and Fridays usually consist of an outdoor ride (if you have a bike, I do not!) or spin, and run. Wednesdays also usually have an outdoor ride or spin, run, but an evening strength session and team dinner as well. Tuesdays are running interval workouts with a local run club as well as an evening swim. Thursdays are another run and evening swim. Lastly, Weekends tend to have spontaneous long runs, rides, or yoga sessions for recovery. 

October Calendar for Dartmouth's Triathlon Team
This was the baseline schedule for October, though practices were modified or re-scheduled at times.

What? You thought I went to all eighteen? Most definitely not. I attended around four practices per week, which got me past the required twelve to receive my PE credit and required twenty to be deemed an active member of the team. My experience with practices has been pretty good—the indoor spin sessions are great to get started in cycling and the swim sessions really help develop your technique. A few friends and I also planned independent runs, since sometimes the practices are at an inconvenient time (Good old time-management). This first term has taught me that your fulfillment from the Club comes from how involved you are, so the more practices attended, the better the experience is.

My Triathlon highlight was the club-organized indoor race. I got to wake up on a Sunday morning and start my day with a mini-triathlon. Upperclassmen supporters wore classic Dartmouth flair (funky clothing to brighten things up), and us racers made our way through a short swim in Alumni gym, a cycling section in the spin room, and finally a few laps in Hanover. Following the race, we had a team brunch at Foco! (the dining hall!). (So much was accomplished before 10am.) I'm looking forward to future Triathlons, where the Team actually travels to a public race and we compete for points!

Dartmouth Triathletes gather next to the pool in Alumni Gym.
Minutes before the Indoor-Tri

At the beginning of the term I—like many first-years—tried a ton of different clubs. The first few weeks consisted of introductory club meeting after introductory club meeting—and I still believe that was completely necessary for me to get a better grasp of activities beyond the classroom. I would also say, however, that it was important for me to get consistently involved in at least one thing during the whole term. The Triathlon Team was that one thing, and it provided a nice structure for each packed week of the term that I could fall back on.

Human tunnel at Triathlon finish
A photo finish as everyone cheered on the finishers!


Posts You Might Like