As many of you know, a few weeks ago, I swam in the USMS Summer Nationals and did quite well. I came home with a medal for every event I competed in. (Four in all.) Yes, I was stoked, but I have no illusions about my abilities and speed as a swimmer.
When I first signed up for the meet, I checked the times to see where I would be seeded, what I needed to swim to get top ten, and so on. Looking at those times, the likelihood, based upon past performance, of me making the top ten was slim to none. (Well, maybe if I was bitten by a radioactive dolphin. 😀 ) So, I set my sights on getting my best times, because attending meets isn’t just about winning medals. It’s about challenging myself physically and mentally, enjoying the camaraderie of my fellow teammates, and swimming. My best time is about eleven seconds slower than it needs to be for me to truly be in the top ten in the nation for my age group, but, as luck would have it, not everyone showed up, and I did. As a result, I placed sixth at nationals, swam my best time, and came home with a medal. And, yes, I had a great time.
Am I fast? Well, it depends on who you ask. 😀 One of my friends and lane mates whom I swim with regularly says that I am. I, on the other hand, think I’m middling to fast. I’m a strong swimmer. There are women in my age group much, much faster than me. Conversely, there are other women in my age group much, much slower than me. At this particular meet, I happened to do well. Why? Because I showed up, and a number of these women who are faster than me did not. And, while they may be faster than me, it doesn’t really matter. You have to show up to win. Heck, you have to show up period if you want anything of value in your life.
We’ve all been told at some point in our lives that you have to show up/play to win, but, sometimes, it takes experience to really bring it home. This experience reminded me of that.
Oh, yes, and being prepared. I never would have finished that 200m backstroke if I hadn’t trained. 🙂
I’m thinking next season I probably won’t swim at the Summer Nationals. (They are in Maryland.) I suppose I could fly out to Maryland for it, but I doubt I will. I might go to regionals. We’ll see. I don’t know where I’ll be at that point, but I’ll definitely be swimming and showing up… somewhere. LOL