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OlympicHopeful
August 16th, 2008, 09:15 PM
So I have been watching the summer olympics with much interest, more so than the last games in Athens. I have been especially fond of the swimming events, and I am in awe of Michael Phelps' performance. Two days ago, while watching another race (in swimming) I felt this uncontrollable desire to start swimming again. I say again, because I stopped swimming three years ago. I haven't been in the water for two and a half years now, but I have done exercise outside of the water.

I have an interesting history in swimming. I learned to swim at age 12 and I learned the basics and more at my local Y in less than a month. In a year I was swimming like an advanced amateur, and at my peak about three years ago I could swim 50 meters breaststroke under water in a single breath, do a 48 laps medley non stop and do an impressive freestyle with racing turns added in. I also built up a friendliness to the water; something that allowed me to be one with it, and I also developed incredible stamina. Some people wh saw me from the deck commended me; one memorable moment that I still cherish is when an older man, an pro swimmer mentioned to my mother that I was absolutely perfect in my swimming. In high school, my foreign language teacher told my parents to put me on the swim team, as she thought I had incredible potential; the only puzzling thing was, she had never (at least as far as I know) seen me swimming!

Unfortunately, I never had the chance to join a swim team, even for my high school, due to academic commitments and also due to my dermatologist advising me to stay away from Chlorine due to skin concerns. Although the medical concerns are no longer there, I still have an academic commitment, although one that I feel I can balance, especially after hearing about Ben Wildman Tobriner.

So after telling you a long story about my struggles and achievements, I want to tell you about my current (and hopefully not impulsive) goal: I want to swim in the Olympics at least eight years from now (I say atleast, because if I ma not ready by then, then the 2020 olympics will be my goal). I am still a teenager and in
better than average shape, and I still remember the strokes well. Do you think I have a chance, and do you think that this is a concrete dream/vision? Or am I just in the spirit of the Olympics and betting too much on myself? I needed some anonymous advice. Now that I have laid out so much information about myself, I need your honest opinion.

Thanks for the advice in advance!

ViveBene
August 16th, 2008, 09:41 PM
Some useful advice in this thread:

http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=11604

You will not be "another" (fill in the name) great. You will be yourself. Just because one other person in the universe did it...

Participating in the Olympics takes great commitment and great achievement, as well as much practice in actual competitive swimming. There are some links floating around on M. Phelps's typical training day.

Make a plan, decide what steps you need to do to execute the plan, test the plan, do mid-course corrections.

IMO, academics should come first. And yes, I do think you are in the grip of Olympics fever, but so are many! So go out and test yourself! Put some ground under those dreams.

VB