HANOVER, N.H. — The folks in the neighborhood must wonder about the young couple with the dog who loves to dig.

“We’re the ones who don’t do lawn care and who never seem to work,” said Sarah True, who added in her best geezer voice: ” ‘They exercise an awful lot!’ ”

“Always running at random times of the day,” added Ben True. “And the dog’s always outside, finding different bushes or holes.”

Neighbors make a point of stopping at the end of the driveway, peering in with a Where’s Waldo curiosity to find Otzi’s latest hideout. Few of them realize the dog – “a tame tan wolf,” as Ben describes him – has his own endorsement deal, with Nulo dog food.

By the end of the summer, millions more may know all about the Trues. The couple could be competing on the same day – Aug. 20 – at the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Ben is the North Yarmouth native and Greely High graduate who went on to star in both Nordic skiing and distance running at Dartmouth College before deciding on distance running as his career. A case of Lyme disease derailed his 2012 Olympic bid, but now, at age 30, he is primed to make the Olympic team and possibly contend for a medal in Rio. Last year he set an American 5K road record and made his first world championships team, finishing sixth in Beijing in the 5,000 meters.

Sarah, 34, placed fourth and was the top American in the triathlon at the 2012 London Games. She qualified for Rio last summer.

In early July, Ben will have two chances to earn an Olympic berth. He’ll compete in the 10,000 meters at the U.S. Olympic track and field trials in Eugene, Oregon, on Friday night. The top three finishers will head to Rio. True has the fourth-fastest qualifying time.

In the 5,000 meters, True has the second-best time entering the trials. His first heat is July 4 with the finals scheduled for July 9. Again, the top three qualify.

“Ideally, I would run the 5K (in Rio),” True said. “But if I qualify for the 10K and don’t qualify for the 5K, it’s not like I’m going to pass up running the (Olympic) 10K. I just think my chances in Rio are better in the 5K. I haven’t run many 10Ks on the track, ever, so it’s more of an unknown for me.”

In anticipation of an interesting Olympic love story, NBC sent a television crew to Hanover last fall to film an up-close-and-personal piece on the couple.

They met back in 2010, when she was Sarah Groff. She was born in Hanover, grew up in Cooperstown, New York, and became an All-American swimmer at Middlebury College. Her brother, Adam, is a physician with an MBA. Her sister, Lauren, is a fiction writer whose most recent book – “Fates and Furies” – was named by President Obama as his favorite book of 2015, a year after Ben and Sarah were married.

Both Adam and Ben are Dartmouth graduates who decided to set down roots in this town on the Vermont border. Sarah was living with her brother’s family and using Hanover as a training base when she met True, who had broken his toe and taken up cycling in order to stay in shape.

“My broken toe led to me not being able to run, which led to me cross training, which led to us riding bikes together, which probably would not have happened had I not broke my toe,” he said, speaking between bites of lunch at a local bakery/sandwich shop.

“Yeah, but we might have had dog-park dates,” Sarah said. “We would have met.”

“She stole her brother’s dog,” said Ben, who had gotten Otzi as a puppy a few years earlier.

“Borrowed,” she said with a mischievous smile. “I borrowed (my brother’s) dog. That works, too.”

On this particular Monday, Sarah got up at 7 a.m. and swam for 90 minutes at the Upper Valley Aquatic Center in nearby White River Junction, Vermont. On her way home she shopped for groceries, while Ben visited a chiropractor in nearby Woodstock, Vermont. Sarah still had biking and running on her agenda, and Ben, who awoke at 9:30, planned an evening run.

“Monday’s a one-run day,” he said. “With most of the upcoming races being night races, I’ve switched to doing the majority of my running in the evening to get the body used to that. Normally I would do my longer run in the morning and shorter run in the afternoon, but recently I switched that to try to get the body used to racing at night.”

“A good part of our job,” Sarah said, “is staying healthy. There’s the official training and then there’s the body maintenance. Sleep is part of the job, too. After this (lunch), I’ll probably have to take a nap. This is a lot of excitement for me.”

The previous Friday night, Sarah enjoyed the rare treat of watching her husband compete, at the Adidas Boost Boston track meet in Somerville, Massachusetts. Against an international field that included Olympic silver medalist Nick Willis of New Zealand, True placed third in the 1,500 meters – a much shorter race than he usually runs – in 3 minutes, 36.05 seconds. Not only was it a personal best for True, who had never officially broken 3:40, it marked the fastest time this year for a U.S. runner at that distance.

“I think it just means that the training is where it should be,” said True, who moved up from 11th at the halfway point in a field of 18. “I was a little surprised. I think I actually even had a shot at winning if I knew how to run a 1,500 and moved up a little bit earlier.”

The time surprised True’s coach, Tim Broe, a 2004 U.S. Olympian who said he anticipated a time of about 3:39 and quickly scrapped a planned postrace workout.

“He ran extraordinarily well here, especially with how little track work we’ve been able to get done,” Broe said. “To run 3:36 … and have run 100 miles a week for 12 out of the last 16-17 weeks tells me he is prepared to do really well (at the Olympic trials). As long as we get there healthy, he is going to be tough to beat.”

The race was only the third of the year for Ben, who was runner-up to Dejen Gebremeskel at the B.A.A. 5K the day before the Boston Marathon and 11th (second American) in the Prefontaine Classic 5,000 in Eugene. A hip injury interrupted his training and caused him to pull out of a planned half marathon in New York City. It also aggravated his Achilles tendon.

“I’m not exactly sure what happened this winter,” he said, “but the whole left leg chain got upset, which caused me not to be able to run for a couple weeks. It’s something that I have to manage the rest of the year, probably. I can do everything I need to do training-wise, but I just have to stay on top of it or it will flare up.”

Ben and Sarah spent the winter in Athens, Georgia, the latest attempt in their continuing quest to find an offseason training site that fulfills certain criteria. It has to be warm enough for Sarah to cycle outside, within driving distance so they can bring the dog, and ideally, have a vibrant cultural scene.

Long a fan of NASCAR, Ben became friends with Landon Cassill, who drives the No. 38 car and invited True to sit in his pit box at races last year in Loudon, New Hampshire, and at Pocono Raceway in Pennsylvania. Because Cassill also dabbles in triathlons, a connection had been made through an acquaintance of Sarah. Ben gave Cassill running advice and Sarah drove the pace car at Loudon.

“Ben was very jealous,” said Sarah, who with Cassill’s help set up go-kart driving lessons for Ben at Atlanta Motor Speedway to celebrate his 30th birthday.

“It was funny because the other guys had done a lot of it,” she said. “So when they asked (Ben) how much experience he had racing, he was like, ‘No experience racing cars, but I know how to race!’ ”

While Ben has been outside New England for only one race so far this year, Sarah has competed in South Africa, Australia, England and the United Arab Emirates. In a few days she will head to Sweden, where she is the two-time defending champion of the international triathlon in Stockholm, before flying to Oregon to support Ben at the trials. They don’t use a big whiteboard for their comings and goings, but they are reliant on Google Calendar.

Travel “energizes me but it just wears him out,” Sarah said. “If he could get away with only racing in New England, he would.”

Travel to Brazil, of course, poses its own challenges. Two of the most common concerns are the mosquito-borne Zika virus and pollution in the waters of the host city. Although the swim portion of the Olympic triathlon will be held in the open ocean off Copacabana Beach instead of the filthier Guanabara Bay (home to sailing and rowing), an Associated Press investigation revealed distressing levels of viruses from human waste “up to 1.7 million times what would be considered hazardous on a Southern California beach.”

Sarah said she knows of no athlete who became ill after last August’s test event, and that some gastrointestinal distress may result from her 1,500 swim, but what bothers her more is the erosion of the Olympic legacy.

“When they put forth a proposal to host,” she said, “the idea is to improve the host city, and one of the things they’re supposed to improve is water quality.”

As for the Zika virus, which can cause a serious birth defect called microcephaly, “as a young married couple it’s something you have to consider,” Sarah said. “Ultimately it’s a much bigger concern for the people who actually live there. We’re going down in (South American) winter, a down period of time. I won’t be pregnant while I’m there. We don’t have plans immediately to start a family. It doesn’t change the way we approach the Olympics, but it would be naive not to have it be something that you think about and become informed about.”

As for Otzi, who landed his dog-food deal earlier this year through Sarah’s IMG agency, he’ll stay in New Hampshire. Like his buddy from Maine, he’s a homebody, too.

“He’s very low maintenance,” Ben said of his 8-year-old canine companion. “He kind of takes care of himself.”

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