By Alissa Z. Lacson
Every December, the different colleges anticipate one of the biggest events throughout their college life, the Intramurals competition. Students cheer for their respective units, the athletes compete their best, and the competition gets tougher and tougher until only one college emerges the best. The awarding day might be the most exciting one for it grants bragging points to the victorious — but their victory would not have been possible if not for their athletes who brought them the trophy. The Weekly Silliman chats with some of the best athletes around the campus to talk about how they train, how they balance their athletic life with their academics, and how their sport has passionately brought them to becoming the most valuable players for this year’s Intramurals.
When did you start playing your sport?
Donnabel: Grade 5 ko…I was on a clinic for lawn tennis…pero I had the chance to try pingpong and mao toh giganahan ko so nipadayon ra pud ko.
Dyann: I started playing when I was a sophomore student back in high school.
Allan: This is my first and legit competition of dance sport.
Nicole: Year 2013.
Alvin: During my third grade [in] elementary.
Marc: Grade 3.
Danielle: I started running when I was in first year high school.
Kit: I started running when I was still Grade 5. Since then, I practiced so hard and I qualified in the Palarong Pambansa. I became a national athlete for five years.
Jay: Since I was 4th year high school.
Aiko: The first time I joined the Intramurals dance sport competition was way back 2011. I was the youngest competitor (14 years old) that time.
How do you train and how often?
Donnabel: We had our tryouts already around July [but] November na tong ni start ang regular practices, mga 2nd week na.
Dyann: By doing some drills to improve our stamina and, after, we would position ourselves inside the diamond and perform simulations of probable plays. Our team had about 10 to 12 days of practices, from 9 to 11:30 AM and 3 to 5 PM…for November only.
Allan: I started practicing since August. Until then, every night nako tig-practice kay beginner pa man ko. I worked hard para ma learn nako ang mga basics.
Nicole: Jog and drills.
Alvin: Honestly, wala jud ko ka train kaayo…the night before Intrams rako naka-play usob kay I was busy accomplishing my requirements sa school.
Marc: I train from Monday to Saturday except Wednesday for prayer meeting…that’s two hours each day.
Danielle: Actually, I didn’t have much time to train because I am also part of the ICLS basketball team and the volleyball varsity team. I did my last training during the semestral break.
Kit: For me, I did not train so hard…because of my schedule…ang practice nalang nako kay Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and sometimes Sunday morning.
Jay: We trained as a team and played few scrimmages against our friends in the volleyball community. We started training two weeks before Intrams so we actually didn’t have enough time to train harder.
Aiko: We had been training for almost two months. We usually start at around 8 PM and end at midnight…[or] around 1 AM.
How do you balance your academic and athletic life?
Donnabel: Lisod i-balance pero nakaya ra gyapon. As to how, time management jud…i-sacrifice usahay ang pagkatulog…but with God’s guidance, as of now, okay ra so far.
Dyann: I admit that the…practices made me feel a little off beat because I usually don’t do anything on Saturdays and Mondays, but being an athlete for the Intramurals compelled me to go to the field and practice.
Allan: Lisod kaayo siya i-manage kay my classes start at 7 AM…if naa koy exams mag dala kog tulun-an…para if naa mi time to rest diha ko mag tuon.
Nicole: I play when there’s no school work [or] class.
Alvin: I was not really that prepared for Intrams because I was busy completing school necessities and requirements.
Marc: After training, I have to make my assignment or study my lessons for a test. Since I am not so good at academics, skipping my training should be known by my coaches. By God’ s help, [I wake up] early at 4 AM to review.
Danielle: As a player, I need to maximize every hour of the day because night time is already reserved for trainings.
Kit: By studying after my training. Kapoy siya? Yes, kapoy pero if you can discipline your mind and body to do it, you can really do it.
Jay: Time management. Being a student-athlete is never easy. I study and do my homework whenever there is no training.
Aiko: I made sure I had no class during Wednesday and Friday [afternoons]…to focus myself on the training during the night. If ever the available time I have set for myself won’t be enough, I review right after the training and usually sleep at around 3 AM. I had to accept the fact that I had to be physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually ready because I had committed myself to it and I must face the responsibility.
How has sports been an impact in your life?
Donnabel: It will not just give you a healthy lifestyle…it will also boost your confidence and build trust, not just with [your] teammates but also sa kaugalingon ba nga kaya nimo.
Dyann: It taught me sportsmanship and that it doesn’t matter whether you lose or win, as long as you give your best in what you do.
Allan: Dancing has been a way for me to express what I feel, especially feelings that can’t be expressed by words.
Nicole: It has a big impact in my life because I’ve met new friends. It helped me know how to balance my time and [it] inspired me to push myself beyond my limits.
Alvin: You’ll be physically fit, [you can] exercise, and you’ll have hobbies during your free time.
Marc: It made me see that we should train hard before reaching your goal of winning. Life is not just [about] sitting down and [getting] everything I want but [also to] work for it. And of course, our Loving God should be part of it.
Danielle: It taught me how to be a disciplined person aside from making my body healthy. Striving for excellence has been my motivation in winning my competitions.
Kit: It keeps me physically fit and mentally alert.
Jay: Sports molded me into a better person. It is where I learned friendship and sportsmanship.
Aiko: Dancing has not only taught me that it is not about impressing other people, but expressing one’s feelings. Dancing taught me that no dancer is better, only braver.
What is your motto in life?
Donnabel: Walk the talk.
Dyann: Do what makes you glad without stepping on others to achieve happiness.
Allan: We should do the things that we love the most because that’s the true essence of living life to the fullest.
Nicole: If you think it, you can do it.
Alvin: Hard work beats talent if talent refuses to work.
Marc: Love God above everything.
Danielle: If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it.
Kit: No pain, no gain.
Jay: Try not to become a man of success, but rather, try to become a man of value.
Aiko: Let it be and come what may. Accept what there is in order to become better. Always do it for improvement, not for perfection. If I win, I win; if I lose, I lose.
*images sourced from Facebook