Wrapping Up the Season with Bluth

As the Santa Clara men's rowing team wraps up their 2012 racing season, SantaClaraBroncos.com (SCB) sat down with Mark Bluth (MB) to talk about his season, training and future plans.  Bluth, a sophomore from Seal Beach, Calif., competed with the Long Beach Junior Crew in high school and is currently on the Bronco varsity squad.

By: Kaitlin Fuelling '13

SCB: How long have you rowed?
MB: I have just completed my third rowing season.  I started the summer before my senior year of high school and rowed with the Long Beach Junior Crew.

SCB: How did you get into the sport of rowing?
 My twin brother started it after he quit playing football.  I was able to see how much he enjoyed the sport and I decided to follow him to the dock every afternoon.

SCB: How difficult has it been adjusting to the rowing schedule and practice schedule?  Has it impacted how you study or hang out with people?
It would be much more difficult if I did not love rowing as much as I do.  It is obviously difficult to follow such a strict daily regimen, but I adjusted pretty quickly, especially after our first race in the fall.  Rowing has definitely impacted my studies and the people I hang out with.  I have another group of friends besides my rowing team, and during the season I would hang out with them much less, just due to the conflicting schedules.  Now that the season is over for me, I am able to find equal time to hang out with my team and my other friends.

 Is there a race, invitational or location you enjoy rowing at?
MB: My favorite course is at Lake Natoma in Sacramento, Calif.  It has beautiful surrounding scenery that makes it a enjoyable place to row.

SCB: How would you describe the team dynamic?
MB: Our Santa Clara men's rowing team has a variety of individuals who all complement each other.  At the beginning, rowing was the one thing we had in common.  But, as our team continued to spend a majority of our time together, we have been able to learn so much more about each other.  Together, we balance each other out, bringing out some of the best and worst parts of each other.  The team has fun, which makes the rowing even more fun.

SCB: What are your plans for after college?
MB: After college, I have a potential plan to go to law school.  If not, I'd like to find a job in the Bay Area and keep rowing in the mornings.

SCB: How do you prepare during the summer and in pre-season?
MB: Since the summer schedule is on our own, I find it best to build a foundation all summer that I can work with once we reunite in the fall.  I try to run several miles on the beach back home and erg and weight-lift.

SCB: What has been the best part about being a student athlete at Santa Clara University?
MB: The best part would be the character development that forces me to test myself nearly every waking hour.  Then, there is the fact that I get the opportunity to represent Santa Clara.  

SCB: Is there anything you feel you have missed out on by being a student-athlete? I'm sure the tough schedule of practice and games can get to be a little overwhelming.
MB: If I've missed out on anything, I catch up on it after our season is over.  During the season, the only thing that matters is rowing.  Afterwards I can enjoy the other aspects of college.  I don't miss out on that much since I prioritize rowing over most things.  The only difficult part is that I go to bed at the same time my roommate goes out to hang out with our friends.  

SCB: Any pre-game superstitions or routines?  
MB: The night before each race I watch and re-watch past Olympic races and try to emulate how those phenomenal rowers performed.  Then, I isolate myself by listening to my iPod to visualize the race.  

SCB: What is something that people or your teammates may not know about you?  
MB: Something they may not know is that I really enjoy fly-fishing.

SCB: Favorite food?
MB: Hamburgers.