As a freshman I am still trying to wrap my head around Harvard. The school, the team, and of course the weather, are new challenges that we face each day. My name is Margaret Ramsey, and I swim mostly distance free with a weekly appearance in the mid-distance lane. Over the summer my anticipation for school was uncontrollable. The team sent the incoming freshman Harvard swimming caps that we couldn’t resist and emails to stay in touch. The adjustment into college life has been surprisingly easy because of the cohesiveness of HWSD. We always have someone to eat with in the dining halls, study with in Lamont, or push you in practice. This amazing team creates a competitive family-like environment making Harvard feel like my new home.
This week at practice the yardage increased, dryland grew more intense, and Arturo, our yoga instructor, challenged us to use our “Ujjayi” breath outside of workouts. In the pool, the distance lane tested their sprinting skills, the “flack pack” worked their underwater kick, the sprinters worked their power, and the divers have done a good job doing their optionals. The week culminated with the infamous IM set (or the fly set). I had heard whispers about this set and personally, I was dreading it, but right from the get go, everyone was vocal, focused, and fast. After the set, Chris recognized freshman Kendall Crawford for killing it, calling attention to her effort and mindset from the beginning. As the week drew to a close, Steph stressed the importance of “togetherness” in the month of October. P-sets, papers, hard practices, and fluctuating weather characterize this month, but from what I am experiencing, HWSD is taking October by storm. In this new family, I find it very easy to push yourself and your teammates to that next level. Everyone holds each other accountable because in the end, “we fight together.”