Saturday, June 30, 2012

Swimming Trials

I am still a swimmer. I had to quit my competitive team in eighth grade when I was diagnosed with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopothy and I never got back on a team for any extended period, but I am still in the water thirty hours per week and enjoy thinking about, discussing, watching, and performing the activity. Something as important as swimming you don't just give up because of a little heart failure.

I have been watching the United States Swimming Olympic Trials all week. They are just fantastic. They really bring out the swimmer in me. It almost makes me want to get in the pool and swim my guts out. It is just so cool and inspiring. This is my favorite swim meet in the world.
Here is the list of my top three favorite swim meets:
  1. The Trials
  2. The Olympics
  3. The Dual in the Pool 
The Olympics have drama, but the trials have real intensity. The Olympics is raw patriotism, but the Trials are raw athleticism. The Olympics have the some scattered outstanding moments (Jason Lezak in the 2008 4x100m relay), but every moment of trials is a race. No American swimmer would intentionally peak for The Olympics. They have to make The Olympics first and Trials is the fastest swim meet in the world. The reason that swimming only sends two athletes per country instead of the normal three is that America is too fast. Every year we would completely demolish all the other countries and sweep most events. Then they changed the rules in 1980 so the United States could only win two-thirds of the medals. This is why I love Trials: it is more pure swimming. Everything is just ridiculously quick.

My athlete of choice to cheer on this Trials is Ryan Lochte. Not only is he fantastically handsome (just look at him) and perfectly athletic, but he also has a kind and generous personality. He's done really well so far and I think he completely deserves it.

When I was sick Ryan Lochte sent me a card. He was not alone. I got quite a few cards (thanks!), but I got only one card from a celebrity. I must have shown every nurse in Childrens Hospital the get well note he sent me with the picture and signature. Most people just nodded and smiled because at the time he was such a minor Olympian, outshined by Michael Phelps, but now I will be able to say Ryan Lochte and a couple non-swimmers might know who I mean. I will always know, though, that Ryan is actually a decent guy, not just a good backstroker.

1 comment:

Bob Singer said...

A lot of us think you are a great athlete. Walking out of the ICU four days post-transplant with your nurses chasing after you was an amazing athletic performance.