Access expert advice from the world’s top swimmers and swim coaches. Whether you want to learn about stroke technique, race strategy, or training plans, you’ll find informed answers from top experts like Emma McKeon, Bob Bowman, and many more.
I swim about 1500-2000m every session, a mix of breaststroke and kick sets. My sets are intense enough to challenge myself and improve, but not so much that my skill level will diminish. Transcript: "So I swim around average about 1,500 to 2,000 meters-- I wouldn't say every session, but if I'm doing breaststroke, it'll be probably that amount. And the rest is going to be warm up and swim down with a few over [INAUDIBLE] meters. If it's a kick set, yeah, you're probably looking at 1,500, 2K. Yeah, I'd say over two as well. Both sets are going to be enough to, obviously, kill you off and improve, but not so much that your skill is going to deplete."
In sprinting, there is usually a strong look on people's faces as they are psyching themselves up. To create an environment that makes me comfortable and thrive, I look to my teammates in the ready room to provide a sense of ease. Transcript: "Hey, Kim. In the world of sprinting, there aren't too many people loosening you up, or you're trying to create an environment that's fun. I look back to the many finals and semi-finals that I've raced in, and there really is a very strong look on most people's faces where they are-- they're psyching themselves up. And it was never a question of them trying to aid in and providing an environment that allowed me to thrive. I think for me the great thing was when I was in the ready room with a close friend, a teammate from Arizona or South Africa, because by virtue of that, we were able to speak to each other and kind of make things a little bit more calm for each other. So whenever I had a teammate, that was really what allowed me in many ways to feel an additional sense of ease."
I start the 100 breaststroke with an out sweep, keeping my head down, eyes down and chin tucked while throwing my head forward to get back into streamline as quickly as possible. Transcript: "This is the 100 breaststroke I start. My out sweep. As my head is down. My eyes are down. My chin is tucked and I throw my head forward to get back into streamline as quickly as possible."
I'm pretty happy with my swimming and I appreciate the support from Chad. Transcript: "Yeah, I think it's pretty good. I mean, I like my daughters-- I got back with Chad, training back in 2019, and yeah, I think my roar is my biggest asset in swimming. So thank you so much for the support and love you Chad. [LAUGHS]"
To overcome feelings of guilt and shame around eating unhealthy foods, it's important to take a step back and identify the source of those feelings. From there, you can have conversations with the people who are making you feel bad and set boundaries. Additionally, allowing yourself to indulge in unhealthy foods from time to time is part of self-care and can actually be healthy. Transcript: "For individuals who struggle with guilt or shame around eating unhealthy foods, what advice would you give for overcoming these feelings? Well, first of all, I think you have to take a step back and say, where are these feelings coming from? I know the majority of my life I was ashamed for how I ate and and how I looked the majority of my swimming career, mostly by my coaches. So I did have some family members and teammates as well and plenty of other people, but that all starts with the culture, that starts with the coaches. So I think you have to take a step back and look at where is it coming from. And you know, if you are eating completely unhealthy, you know, you got to be honest with yourself and maybe there are things you can do to make better choices. But I am certainly not ever gonna be the person to say you have to be perfect and eat healthy all the time. Like you're gonna be miserable if you don't ever let yourself, you know, indulge and have, you know, fun things. You know, what's the point of living if we're, you know, not ever doing anything fun. So I think you have to take a step back and look at why you feel shame and if it's from those people, if it's from people around you and maybe those aren't people that need to be in your life. Maybe you need to sit down and have a conversation with those people and say, you know what, I don't appreciate you making me feel bad about this and I don't appreciate, you know, your attitudes towards this. So sometimes it's dissecting the matter a little bit and figuring out where that comes from. But if you are eating healthy, eating healthy part of self-care means occasionally being unhealthy. So in my opinion, you have to relax, take a deep breath occasionally, cut yourself some slack and that little bit of being unhealthy is actually quite healthy. So all the time, no. A little bit, yes."
Moderation is key when it comes to balancing the social aspects of drinking with being a student-athlete. Enjoy yourself and don't feel peer pressure, but make sure that you are making decisions that are in your best interest. Transcript: "How do you recommend athletes balance the social aspects of drinking with their responsibilities as student-athletes? I don't know what the social aspect has anything to do with it, to be honest. So it doesn't matter what you're doing in life. If you're making decisions based on what the crowd is doing and what the social activities are, you're never going to be particularly successful, frankly. So, you know, I'm not going to say don't ever go have a drink with your friends, but you have to do what's in your best interest. And if you are trying to swim seriously and have a serious professional career, then everything has to be done in moderation. So, you know, I actually think having a beverage from time to time is quite healthy. You know, it helps take the edge off. It helps you relax. It helps you take a deep breath. I think part of self-care is allowing yourself to sometimes do these quote unquote unhealthy things. But again, the key is all in moderation and not denying yourself completely, because that's when resentment builds up and, you know, it becomes this forbidden fruit. And it just becomes this bigger deal than it needs to be. And so, you know, I think all in moderation, be smart about it, enjoy your life, but don't do what the crowd is doing. Don't feel peer pressure. Don't feel like you ever should have to do anything because anybody else is doing it. If you want to have a drink, have a drink. If you don't, don't. And it doesn't matter what anybody else is doing it. And frankly, a lot of times the social crowd, they're not going to be as serious as you are. They're not going to be doing the same things and they don't have the same goals. And so, you know, you can't expect them to have the same lifestyle. So you do what's in your best interest and don't worry about anybody else."