As mammals, we are naturally conditioned to gravitate toward land.
There are those select few that deviate from the predisposed tendencies of the animal group we fall into, however.
Among them is University of Cincinnati senior distance swimmer Chris Bready, who discovered his thirst for water at an early age.
It was through his sister Cheryl, who competed collegiately at the University of Northern Colorado, that Chris first gained an interest in the sport.
“My sister swam. She is six years older than me and she was on the swim team, just like the summer league swim team, and it looked fun, so I decided to join,” he said.
The rest is history, as Bready now hold multiple school records in the sport he thought looked fun.
In 2017, Bready competed in the NCAA championship in the 500-meter and 1,650-meter freestyle, while shattering four University of Cincinnati swimming records.
All the while, Bready has still been pushed along by Cheryl.
“Absolutely [she has been my biggest source of inspiration],” Bready said. “She swam from when she was probably six until 20, through her first two years of college. She decided to come home because she was home sick, but I would have to say that she definitely was my greatest inspiration.”
With only one season to go before graduation, Bready has set high goals for himself in order to finish off his career strong.
“I would just love to finish it off with a fourth conference championship in the mile,” Bready said. “Going back to NCAA’s for my second year and trying to get top-16 there. I want to reach All-American status and also cap off my career with an open water race, which I have been getting into recently. I am trying to make the U.S. National Team for open water.”
Aside from his own goals, Bready hopes he can help the program for years to come after he graduates, passing on his knowledge to the younger swimmers.
“With all my experience I have over the past three years and more, just being on the swim team and other teams back in Texas, I am trying to give all the younger kids all the knowledge I have,” Bready said. “I am trying to help them be as best prepared as they can be.”
Bready, the ultimate locker room guy, can be found hanging out with his teammates, even when out of the water.
“Honestly, I hang out with the team a lot,” Bready said. “Whether it is playing video games or Frisbee, capture the flag and stuff like that. I like being active and outdoors, just hanging out with some buddies.”
The native of Missouri City, Texas and operations management student hopes to travel around a bit once his time at UC culminates.
“In terms of a job, I am fine with relocating wherever to the job that fits me best,” Bready said. “I would also like to travel the world a little. I know after I graduate next summer, I am going to Iceland with my family for two weeks just to celebrate the college success I have had, swimming and academically. Just really trying to reset and enjoy it for two weeks, the family time that I lost from being away from them for a while.”
You can catch Bready and the rest of the Bearcats swimmers in action when they take on Cleveland State University today at 2 p.m. in the Keating Aquatic Center.