Brian Hansen: A day in his skates

 

Photo by Andrei Greska

 

It’s 7 a.m.  If you are like most Marquette students who are living the “college dream” you are still sound asleep. Most Marquette students are not Brian Hansen though. Hansen, a freshman in the College of Business Administration, spends most of his weekdays waking up before the sun has graced us with its presence.

Hansen is a silver medalist winning speed skater in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.  He was a member of the United States speed skating team pursuit which finished .21 seconds away from a tie with Canada for the gold.

Hansen’s Tuesdays and Thursdays startwith a 10 minute drive over to the Pettit National Ice Center where he spends his typical morning until his 11 a.m. class.  While at the Pettit Center, Hansen spends time both on the ice and working out at its athletic facility.

Often times what happens for Hansen is his workout goes too long and he’s rushing to get to his 11 a.m. class.

“There have been times where it’s been 30 minutes before my class and I’m still on the ice,” Hansen said.

Hansen’s goal every week is to get in 10-12 workouts —a  combination of lifts, skates, bike rides, and “low work” like wall sits.  While the Pettit Center offers Hansen the best workout option, he works out at the Rec Plex for convenience purposes on occasion.

Those workouts at the Rec Plex consist of time on a bike, many different variations of squatting, and some “low work” activities.  A staple in his regiment consists of biking for two minutes, doing a wall sit for two minutes and taking three minutes off in between with the goal of seven or eight repetitions.

“It looks kind of goofy if you don’t know what I’m training for,” Hansen said.

Hansen’s weekdays are pretty well booked, between academics and athletics, but his weekends remain usually unencumbered.

“Not too often on the weekdays do I get to sink around and hang out with friends,” Hansen said.  “I’ve only been able to watch two movies, one was for science class.  I don’t have too much time to just do whatever I feel like doing.”

Hansen, unlike many of his speed skating competitors, chose to become a dual threat: an educated speed skater.  Hansen’s a freshman in the College of Business Administration living in Carpenter Tower with an undecided major.  Hansen had to plan his academic schedule so all his classes occurred between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. to ensure sufficient time for training in the early morning and in the late afternoon.

While the best speed skaters in the world can make a good living, it’s not “100 percent certain” that he can make a living off of speed skating so he needed a “fall-back plan, Hansen said about his logic for attending college.

While at college Hansen, who’s taking 14 credits in this his first semester of college, said it’s very difficult to balance academics, athletic training and maintaining a social life—the social life usually takes the biggest hit.

“There’s always times where I feel like this isn’t worth it,” Hansen said.  “Trying to get from class to training and back and forth; it’s too stressful sometimes. But I’ve always done it and I’ve always loved it.”

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