Swimmers go to nationals

With the swimming season just starting two boys swimmers, Colin Parker and Brody Friend, are going to junior nationals. Going to nationals is a huge accomplishment for swimmers, as the next step up would be the U.S. Open.

Junior Colin Parker prepares to swim against Pike.

“There are specific cut times for every championship meet such as state or speedo sectionals. Nationals are some of the fastest cuts you can get, behind Olympic trials. Other than that, it is just a lot of hard work,” Parker said.

Preparing for a big event like this can be a big part of how an athlete performs. 

“I prepare for a meet through lots of practices and workouts, working on different aspects of my race to make myself faster. I also prepare mentally. I will visualize how I want to swim and not let fear get in my way,” Friend said.

Training is the best way to separate yourself from others when competing as an athlete. The more you train, the better you do.

“I train close to 15 hours a week for swimming. We have weights on Monday and Wednesday mornings as well as afternoon practice Monday through Thursday. Then we have Friday morning practice as well as Saturday morning practice,” Parker said.

Staying in shape is essential for performing and outlasting their opponents. 

“It is very important to keep my body in shape because if I don’t, then I won’t perform the way I want to, and I won’t be as fast as I want to be,” Friend said.

When getting to such a big stage, different people have different feelings about it.

“Going to nationals is an amazing feeling. It’s something I’ve been working toward for years, and I’m really glad to have this great opportunity,” Parker said.

Junior Brody Friend finishes his race and prepares for his next.

“It feels amazing going to nationals because I’ve been working very hard at this goal for a while now and it’s nice to see the work paying off. It’s even more exciting that I get to go with one of my teammates,” Friend said. 

Friend will compete in the 50 freestyle, 100 Butterfly and 100 Freestyle. Parker will be competing in the 50 freestyle, 100 freestyle, and 200 freestyle. Getting to this stage this early is a huge accomplishment for any athlete and takes lots of dedication and hard work.