In the Locker Room: Nicole Ouellet
Junior Nicole Ouellet, or Nicky as she prefers to be called, just finished an exciting cross country season and is looking forward to a great indoor track season. She is planning on only running this semester because she is going to study in Ireland in the spring. The Review’s Moose Terry sat down and talked to Nicky about cross country, track and Ireland. The two were also graced by the presence of a special guest.
Moose Terry: Nicky, you just finished your third year as a member of the women’s cross country team. How do you feel about how this season ended?
Nicky Ouellet: It was a phenomenal year. We faced a lot of challenges throughout the year, but we were able to overcome each one and finish on top of our game. The first-years were nasty; they are the best group of women runners.
MT: How did the season go for you personally?
NO: It was good. I did so much better than last year I can’t even compare the two seasons. Last year I didn’t even qualify for regionals but this year I finished in the top 35, a complete turnaround. I have all this speed in my legs and I just want to let it out! Our coach, Coach Ray, says racing is an expression of your love, love for your teammates. I like to think that I’m expressing my love.
MT: What do you take from the cross country season into the upcoming indoor track season?
NO: I don’t think I ran my fastest at the conference or regional cross country meet. It’s really hard to end the season on an average note, but I really want to stick it to our first opponent, Kent State. My feelings about the first meet are too inappropriate to express in the paper. We swear a lot on the team. I think everyone is really excited, and I can’t wait to run again.
MT: What events do you run for indoor track, and how do you prepare for the races?
NO: I run the 800-meter and the one-mile; they are mid-range distance races. I feel like I’m sprinting when I run those races. One way I get ready is I imagine myself racing in my sleep. Also my teammates send me inspirational and funny quotes to help everyone get fired up. We trash talk a lot about the other runners and their teams but we only do that in e-mail form — I’m strictly professional on the track.
MT: What personal goals do you have for the team and yourself?
NO: Goals are hard because I will be gone, but I think the women can do really well. I think we can make a competitive stand and come out with good results. There are a lot of first-years, which is exciting. It might be hard at the beginning but their presence will keep things fresh throughout the season.
MT: It is a really great opportunity to go abroad. Where are you going and what will you do there?
NO: I am going to Galway, Ireland and I’ll be taking literature and history classes. I want to try and join the cross country team there but I’m not sure it will work out. I have my heart set on running over the green Irish hills.
MT: What made you want to go to Ireland?
NO: Accents and beer. No, I’m kidding. The accents are sweet and I love how green everything is over there. I’m sure the beer will be good, too.
MT: What really excites you about spending next semester in Europe?
NO: I want to go to Austria because my little sister’s high school band is playing there and I want to see them. My parents plan on visiting and that’s always fun. Maybe I’ll kiss the Blarney stone again. I might swim the English Channel. The real excitement is catching a leprechaun and bringing him back. I could take him on in my carry-on.
MT: What will you miss about not running all season?
NO: I’ll miss my teammates, the cool whirlpool, free laundry and the group showering. Also, I have a pair of new spikes I won’t be able to show off to all my friends. But going abroad is such a great opportunity.
MT: Well, ladies and gents, it’s time for this week’s Question of the Week. This week 2008 emperor of the world hopeful, Andy Estep, stopped by to ask the question. Emperor Estep, if you please:
EE: Nicky, which of the following would you rather be able to do: fly or breathe underwater? There are a few stipulations: You can fly at a rate of 30 mph for two hours and then would require an hour rest to recoup. For underwater breathing you get frog eyes like in “Harry Potter” and can go for four hours at 70 mph with one hour to rest and recoup. Would you rather fly or breathe underwater?
NO: Breathing underwater would be good for swimming the English Channel but I would prefer to fly. I always had a fear of drowning, and I am afraid sharks would eat me.
Interview by Moose Terry