August CRC Members Spotlight - Andrei Fedorov and Peter Kottke

Tell us a little bit about yourself?

Andrei: We are Georgia Tech faculty members. I am on academic faculty, Peter’s research faculty, and Peter’s also an alum.

Peter: Yes I got my master’s and Ph.D. here. I started working out as a graduate student before it was closed for the big remodel. Right after that remodel is when we started swimming regularly.

How long have you been a member with the CRC?

Peter: I think when I was a graduate student, so since 2000 for me. I came in the fall of 2000.

Andrei: Same for me, so January of 2000. I came in as a faculty member as an assistant professor.

Andrei: I think I’ve known Peter longer than at least two of my kids.

Where are we most likely to find you in the CRC? What is your favorite part of the CRC?

Andrei: Now in the pool.

Peter: Sometimes we would go running or spend time using the exercise machines, but we gravitated more and more to just swimming. We prefer the competition pool for the cooler water.

Andrei: We pretend that we’re good swimmers. We prefer the competition pool because we are much faster in this pool. Although when it’s 50 meters it hits you hard. You really have to work for it. The wall really helps.

Which dimension of wellness do you feel most connected to while engaging with the CRC (professional, spiritual, social, physical, or emotional)?

Andrei: In my case, it must be a combination of all of them.

Peter: We really do, he’s not kidding. We discuss research and student management and those things all the time on our way to the pool, sometimes as a delay tactic to prevent starting the swim. We definitely have a number of people that we’ve met and see frequently. The other regular guys. The main value of the workout is that at the end of the day we know we accomplished something. We joke that if nothing works out that day, we at least got swimming/exercise out of the way. Even when you’re exhausted working out, gives you a better energy for the rest of the day.

Andrei: Absolutely. Emotionally, it’s key. Especially since some of the life routines are pretty harsh. Peter and I sleep very little, and it’s important to be emotionally healthy. Because we work with students all the time, and I don’t sleep a lot swimming helps tremendously. You also develop all kinds of different levels of interaction. You have guys who’ve been there for a semester at least and they already know us. It’s fun.

What is your most fun CRC story?

Andrei: We often talk about professional things, and often times we argue too loudly, or non-politely not in a bad way and I remember when we were picking up a towel, a young man says “you guys must be physicists.”

Peter: I thought you were gonna talk about the guy who said “you guys ruined my workout. I had to listen for 40 minutes to you talking about things I never wanna hear about” and we were just talking about a basic problem for thermodynamics or heat transfer but we had a different idea about how it should be approached. We ruined his workout apparently. I thought people didn’t like the loud grunting on the weight benches, but they don’t like loud discussions about thermodynamics.

What else should we know that we have not asked you yet?

Andrei: Whenever I have visitors coming and I need to show the lab or something, one thing I would always show people is your facility to show that this is really a highlight for people we are trying to recruit. Some people emphasize all the professional stuff and show the labs, and I say “let’s look at some of the pools that we have.”

Peter: Both of our offices are in the Love building which is just over across the street. And there’s lots of different buildings people work in around campus, and I’ve often thought, “I wouldn’t want to move to any of the other ones because it’s a long walk to come to the pool in the morning.”

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