Volume 93, Issue 50
November 26, 1999
Munro swims in the purple waters
Gazette file photo
By Chad Thompson
If you were to look in the dictionary under the word dedication, a picture of Western men's swimming captain, Andrew Munro, a 200 metre freestyle specialist, would probably appear.
The graduate of Silverthorn Collegiate High School in Etobicoke, Ontario, said he has been swimming as long as he can remember. "I think I was born in a pool," Munro said.
The path which leads a student to Western can be varied and Munro's initially went through the University of Toronto. "It was totally by fluke I came to Western. I wanted to go to U of T the whole time. I had to go to summer school to get the average, I got the average but the program filled up," he said.
"The Western captain recruited me and I never closed the door. When it turned out in August that I couldn't go to U of T, I came to Western on August 24th and as soon as I [set] foot on the campus, I decided I was coming here."
After his towel has long dried out, Munro said he plans to go into business for himself, but is unsure in what capacity. He is also uncertain of his coaching plans. "I'll have to take a couple of years out of the pool, I want to pursue avenues which have be denied by being a swimmer my whole life. I didn't have my first job until I was 20 because swimming took all my time up."
As far as what goes into being a good swimmer, Munro said it was all about desire. "You have the right mind set," he said. "Competition motivates me a lot. If I didn't compete, then I wouldn't be a swimmer. I swim to compete."
Life as a student can be very demanding, but Munro enjoys his time as both an athlete and a student. "It helps me manage my time. I am on campus basically all day, I get time to study in the library in between classes. It puts more meaning into the university experience."
According to Munro, the worst part about being a student athlete and a swimmer, other than the smell of chlorine, is losing out on social time with friends. "Some of the worst parts are missing out on the nights when all your friends are going out."
A typical day for Munro is a mix of class, swimming and studying. "I get up for 6:15 a.m. for a morning workout. After the workout I will have breakfast and go to class for most of the afternoon. [I have] swim practice at night and sometimes class at night."
There are two big misconceptions people have about swimmers, he said. "All we do in workout is [swim] up and down the pool. Our workouts are very structured. There are a lot of sets and variety. We also do different kinds of training like running or weights to compliment our swimming. The other misconception would be [that] 'winning is everything.' People always ask, 'Did you win?' but it doesn't mean you did crappy if you didn't win."
Western head coach Glen Belfry said Munro is a hard worker and a good leader. "He's a calm guy. He listens to people and he's not afraid to lead." Outside the pool, Belfry sees Munro as a good citizen. "He works hard at school and likes to have fun."
Fellow swimmer Chris Dimmell said Munro is well deserving of his position as captain. "He's a great leader. All the rookies look up to him," he said. "He's very competitive. I look up to him as a swimmer."
Copyright © The Gazette 1999