For thousands of elite US Swimmers the most important swim meet of the last four years was held June 26th through the 4th of July in Omaha Nebraska. This meet, the US Olympic Trials, served as the qualification process to compete at the 2016 Olympic Games held this summer in Rio.
This was my third time competing at this meet and I felt the most prepared both mentally and physically that I had ever been. How could I not be prepared with two teams fully supporting me? Below is one of many photos that my teammates at Real Canoe sent me to keep me motivated.
Every trials Omaha has sought to bedazzle the crowd with fanfare and excitment, as well as producing a phenomenally well-run meet. This year they did not disappoint, and some of that production was put into personalizing the goodie bags for every swimmer. Below is my personal kickboard to help me remember my experience.
Despite all of the nifty trappings, this was no different than any other swim meet. I had three races at the Trials, the 400 and 200 IM and the 200 Butterfly. I was fortunate the final in the 400 IM and to semi-final in both of the other two events. Although I hoped for more, I am so thankful for this experience to cap off an amazing career. I have made incredible friends over the years, been able to compete for my country and to push my body to the absolute limits. Although I will not be swimming in Rio, I have no regrets and am proud of the swimming career that I have had.
I know that it would have been impossible to have reached this level without the love and support of my family and credit them with all of my success. There is nothing better than racing the last races of my career with them in the stands.