Maia Garren has been throwing on the Logan High track and field team for four years. Recently she signed a contract to throw for Utah State University throughout her college career. Garren is a determined student athlete who holds school records and takes challenging academic courses.
The most difficult part of being a student athlete for Garren is time management. Not only is she determined in the ring but in class as well. She constantly practices and exercises until she perfects her skill, and then when she gets home, she stays up extremely late doing homework.
“Student comes before athlete. That’s why it’s called ‘student athlete’ not ‘athlete student,’” Garren said. “It’s like having two full time jobs.”
"It's like having two full-time jobs."
When she heard the news that she was signed with USU, she cried tears of joy. For four years, she had been working hard for that moment. It was happening but it was not computing very well; it was a dream come true for her. When it finally sunk in, she was thrilled to be a proud Aggie “getting paid to do something I love to do.”
Garren holds the school records in Shot Put and Discus. For indoor Shot Put, her record is 44’6 ¾”, 51’ 3 ½” for indoor weight, and 145’ 1 ½” for discus. Garren is always working hard to get new personal records and breaks them often. Her favorite events are shot and weight because those are the ones she excels in. Shot put is a 14 pound ball you throw with a pushing motion from your neck. Weight is a 14-pound ball that is on a chain, and participants throw it by holding the chain and turning in circles and releasing at the perfect moment.
One of her favorite memories was her experience at the BYU Invitational. Garren and her friend were sitting between the shot put rings and the track and when the gun would go off her friend would jump. One time Garren took an umbrella and poked her friend’s back when the gun went off and scared her friend into thinking she got shot.
Garren also played the setter position on the volleyball team. One may think these sports are vastly different, one being a team sport and the other an individual. However, Garren has a quote by a master thrower: “Those who consider throwing an individual sport have clearly never experienced the brotherhood of those who enter the Ring.”
Even though there is a “brotherhood” in the ring, there is still the competitiveness to win.
“We all want to support each other but also [are] wanting to kick each other’s butts too,” said Garren.
She explains when someone beats their old personal record, everyone is supportive and excited for them. She may throw by herself, but she has her whole team, coaches, parents, and friends encouraging her.