3 Things Swammers are Thinking

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Photo Courtesy: Andy Ringgold/Aringo

By Lillian Nelson, Swimming World College Intern

With college seasons coming to a close, seniors all across the country are beginning to count down their final days being defined as college swimmers, and transitioning into the post-swimming chapters of their lives.

For many, it is a bittersweet moment finishing their last race. Seniors have been through all the ups and downs that swimming has thrown at them, and come out on the other side as not only better athletes, but also as intelligent, respectful, tough-as-nails human beings.

As a junior on deck at my conference championship meet this passed weekend, I both observed and experienced a full spectrum of emotions coming from my team’s senior class, as well as any other seniors out there.

There were fist pumps, tears, smiles, and plenty of hugs as everyone left every ounce of what they had in that pool. And when it was all over, the last race was swum, and the final awards were given out, many of our fellow swimmers turned into swammers.

Amidst the rush of emotion, uncertainty, and pride running through their heads, the following are 3 things swammers are thinking right about now…

1. Woah.

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Photo Courtesy: Allen Rich

Didn’t I just have my first swim lesson like a week ago?

Swimming has a way of dragging on, yet at the same time, years and years can go by in the blink of an eye. Especially with college swimming, athletes do not realize just how fast time can fly by until their final year. So soak it all in while you can.

Make every practice count, never take your teammates for granted, and always remember to appreciate every single opportunity swimming has opened up for you.

2. Now what…?

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Photo Courtesy: Andy Ringgold/Aringo

I get to sleep in beyond 5:15 a.m. like…every day. Am I supposed to start dressing like a normal person now? No more sweatpants to class?

Your days of being a swimmer at first glance may be fading away, but this sport is not one that is easy to leave behind. It is a life-long sport, which instills itself as a lifestyle. No matter where your post-swimming life may lead you, swimming will always find a way to sneak its way in there somehow.

Though we love to hate it, diving into a cold pool every morning is a strange addiction that will be missed dearly. Which is why many post-collegiate swimmers end up returning back to the sport in some way or another. Whether it may be coaching, masters swimming, or volunteering within the swimming community– once a swimmer, always a swimmer.

3. Thank you, swimming.

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Photo Courtesy: Andy Ringgold/Aringo

Being a member of such a tight-knit, challenging, and inspiring community fosters an environment which allows us to push our limits, support others, and pave the way for new experiences.

This sport teaches us more than we ever could have expected. We learn to be a working part of something bigger than ourselves and encourages qualities in us that we will carry far beyond the pool deck. Hard work is far from a foreign concept to us, and we appreciate the little things (i.e. dropping .02 off your best time).

So to all the swammers out there, thank you. Thank you for setting the bar for us to attempt to reset next year. Thank you for sticking with it, and with us. Thank you for changing our sport for the better, and thus changing our lives for the better.

As your teammates, we cannot wait to see how you transfer your passion for swimming into passion for anything and everything life throws your way. Your days of training next to us every single day may be over, but you will always remain close to our hearts, a piece of who we are, and a part of our swimming family.

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6 years ago

Shannon Jones

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6 years ago

Sierra Stewart

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6 years ago

Lauren Tininenko Kristin Walker

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6 years ago

Hey Meagan Thompson you’re in this article!

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6 years ago
Reply to  Aly Davis

#soblessed

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6 years ago

Food sleep and dry hair and feet

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6 years ago

Did you see who won the SEC women’s championship? Yes it was A&M.

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6 years ago

swammers?

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6 years ago

Shaun Ian De Villiers

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6 years ago

Jamie Friderichs?