Countdown to Being a NARP

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By Tim Loehner

Graphic Design Editor

As someone who has participated in sports for as long as I can remember and still competing in sports in college today, I am unsure of what to expect when all of it comes to an end.

   While everyone is focused on the countdown of days until graduation approaches, I am counting down the last few practices and races I have left to compete in with some of my closest friends and teammates.

   I am dreading the one morning when I will wake up and realize that it has all come to an end.

For the last four years, my classes, social life, extracurriculars and more were always scheduled around my athletic schedule for practices and meets.

   Sports have always shaped who I was and am today, whether I was competing in them or just watching them around campus or on TV.

   I always have and still do wonder how my college experience would’ve been if I hadn’t competed on an athletic team here at SHU.

   When the day finally comes that I wake up the morning following my last race or practice, I will feel like a large chapter of my life has come to an end. I will officially have graduated not just from college, but on to the next stage in my life of being… a NARP (Non-Athletic Regular-Person).

   Every day, Monday to Sunday, was just about the same routine for me here at SHU the last four years.

   Practice during the week was always 3:30-5, rain, snow or shine followed by an immediate trip to the dining hall at 63’s.

   It was times like these at the dining hall while sitting in the Mahogany room with my team that I would check my phone and see other college students across the country living it up. Thoughts would race through my head such as, “what if I hadn’t been on a team?”

   How would my last four years have been different; would I have been able to study abroad; would I have joined a club sport or other extracurricular activity? All of these questions have always been running through my head.

   On the weekends, Saturdays were always a full day filled with races either in Boston or somewhere else across New England.

   Unlike the rest of the world that enjoyed a relaxing Sunday the following morning, these were the days I dreaded most.

   While most students are groggy and sick, with their minds full of regret and the “Sunday Scaries,” I was up at 7 a.m. every Sunday with my team ready to run our weekly 14 mile-long run.

   Despite being officially scarred for the rest of my life from these tiring runs and having a biological clock in me to wake up every Sunday probably for the rest of my life at this time, these hours spent with my team are something I would never take back.

   In the end, I’m not sure what I’ll do to take up all this new time on my hands once it’s all over.

   Maybe I’ll pick up an instrument, maybe I’ll start playing Fortnite or maybe I’ll even start writing novels in my local Starbucks. But one thing is for sure: all those hours and days spent working towards those personal goals on the track I will never take back, especially knowing that they have definitely shaped me into the person I am today.

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