– the common Achilles heel for triathletes…
Not for me. I was swimming before I was walking. Honestly.
I was a little fish. I always wanted to be in the water. My mom told me that I would just jump straight into the deep end of public pools, terrifying the life-guards, but keeping myself afloat without any help at all 🙂
So you would assume that I would have joined a swim team as soon as I was old enough… Well, like most 6-year olds, I was busy trying all sorts of new things – including gymnastics, soccer, and dance lessons. I remember asking my mom about the swim team – and we found out that swimmers had practice 5 days/week. No thank you. And so I continued to enjoy swimming as a purely recreational event for the next 10 years.
Flash Forward to High School: Well let’s say it was at age 16 that I went through that horribly awkward phase where I got braces, gained weight, and just looked like a disaster… that was the same age that I gave up soccer. I was ready for something new (a new look, a new me, just new). I decided to try-out for my school’s swim team. I participated in a month of pre-season work-outs and two weeks of intense try-outs. (I’m talking like 2-2.5 hours/day) I dreaded these workouts because they were SO HARD. Most of these kids had been swimming competitively since they were 6! Ugh. Despite my best efforts, I was cut from the team. Devastation.
Scratch that. This was just motivation to train and make the team next year. Success. With the help of coaches and my friend, Amanda, I learned how to do those elusive flip-turns and become even faster in the water. I made the team next year with ease.
Actually, I didn’t just make the team the next year – I was awarded the honor of ‘Most Improved Swimmer‘ on the whole team at the end-of-the-year banquet. 🙂 Moreover, I got the braces off, lost a ton of weight from endless hours of practice, and was finally a happier person. ❤ Swimming.
Flash Forward to College: I continued to swim at Penn State on the Club team and it was the best decision I made in college. It really helped me stay in shape (take THAT Freshman 15), meet tons of new people, and most importantly – it was how I met my now-husband! 🙂
Some of my fastest times to date:
- 100 Free – 1:00.50
- 100 Fly – 1:06.10