For the last official long course meet of the summer season, we headed to Geneva, OH, located on Lake Erie for the U.S. Masters Nationals Long Course Championship. The Spire Institute provided a beautiful facility including a fast and deep Myrtha pool. Although only a small group from North Carolina made the journey, we had a great time participating on relays with our teammates from all of North Carolina. We even took home 4th place overall in the meet as a regional team with our small team presence.
Although our NC women were aiming for two additional relay world records, we were faced with some struggles and missed both records. Among the group, we had strained backs, bronchitis and asthma attacks. Nevertheless, we persevered and were national champions in both our 200 Free and 200 Medley Relays. It is always fun swimming together and cheering each other on.
I swam the 50 free three times during the meet, including the individual race, relay lead off, and official 50 split in the 100 free (26.71, 26.53, and 26.59). Although I did not hit the Olympic Trials qualifying time of 26.19, I was encouraged with my progress this summer and excited to drop a little more time at this meet. I am now only .34 hundredths of a second away!
In addition to lowering my 50 free time a bit, I swam lifetime best times in the 100 back (1:08.81) and 50 back (31.38). The 50 back time was also a new national record. My 50 and 100 fly times were near best times with 28.41 and 1:05.75. Masters Nationals is always so much fun because we compete as a state, rather than our local team. We also get to meet and compete against swimmers from all over the country. It's so motivating to talk with other swimmers about what brought them back to the sport. The level of competition is always great, even in the 90+ age groups!
I returned to work with past week at Golden Corral. I'm so grateful that Golden Corral gave me the opportunity to train over the last six months. I will continue the journey and look forward to working with my coaches and trainers into the fall and winter. The qualifying period for the Olympic Trials continues through June 2016. There are several long course meets this winter and spring going into the Olympic year, so I will continue to chase that 26.19!
Race Video: Women's 200 Free Relay - 26.53 Lead Off Split