SHERIDAN — The Sheridan High School girls swimming and diving team hosts Campbell County and Thunder Basin Friday in its first home meet of the season. The Lady Broncs have completed just shy of half their season. In that time, they’ve tackled countless workout sets, enjoyed numerous team meals and traveled many, many miles for competitions all over the state.
So what is life like for these Lady Broncs? Sheridan’s three seniors have spent a good portion of their lives in the swimming realm and here’s what that entails.
Jadyn Mullikin’s typical day
Mullikin sets her weekday alarm for 5:15 a.m. She rolls out of bed at 5:25 and is out the door just five minutes later.
The Sheridan backstroker takes a quick five-minute respite once arriving at the pool before practice officially starts at 5:45. Morning practice begins with a short run followed with a weight-lifting session.
Mullikin and her teammates hop in the pool for a for about an hour and then dry off and change in preparation for the school day. After a full school day, Mullikin jumps back into the pool for a full two-hour practice. Finally, the time comes to go home, eat dinner, finish homework and go to bed.
Taylor Baldacci’s swimming diet
Swimming works muscles from the neck down to the feet and a normal two-hour practice can burn close to 2,000 calories. Baldacci, to stay fueled, starts her day with a banana or a Cliff bar — either peanut butter or white macadamia nut.
After morning practice, one of the swimmer’s parents provides a meal for everyone to enjoy at the pool. Typically that is a breakfast burrito, eggs and sausages or muffins. Baldacci makes the quick trip home for lunch, enjoying a sandwich — normally Italian.
Before afternoon practice, Baldacci and her teammates scavenge the leftovers from breakfast. A home-cooked meal, usually involving chicken, caps a full day of essential calorie consumption for Baldacci.
Piper Carroll’s meet-day itinerary
If a normal weekday seems busy for the swimmers, a meet day tops it. Carroll will show up at the pool for an out-of-town meet at 6 a.m., grab her swim stuff from her locker and find a seat on the bus.
For the Lady Broncs’ most recent trip to Laramie and Cheyenne, Carroll and her teammates indulged in a bus nap, spanning the distance from Sheridan to Casper. In Casper, Carroll and company visited Walmart to load up on snacks for the remainder of the bus ride and the ensuing meet.
Carroll and her fellow veteran swimmers undergo study sessions for themselves while also tutoring younger teammates to bridge the time from Casper to Laramie.
Upon arriving in Laramie, Carroll and the team will find a spot on deck to put their stuff, then relax for a little while before beginning their warmup. After the team warmup, a meet for Carroll involves individualized warmups and cool downs before and after each race and one final cool down after the 400-yard freestyle relay.
This past week when Sheridan had meets in Laramie and Cheyenne Friday and Saturday, the Lady Broncs bought pizza to eat on the bus trip across the Interstate 80 pass to Cheyenne. Once Carroll has her hotel room assignment, she tucks in, like many of her teammates, to get some rest.
Swimmers at Sheridan stay busy for many hours of the day, nearly seven days a week. Whether it’s a typical school day featuring two practices or a meet hundreds of miles away, the Lady Broncs rarely have time during the day to take a breath.