Here’s some insight from one of the nicest guys on the national team – Sean Ryan. But don’t let his friendly demeanor fool you – he’s an insane worker and competitor. Sean shares some of what’s been going on between Indy, Kazan and Barcelona.
To start this update I first have to say that this past month has been a whirlwind. Starting at US Nationals and World Championship Trials for the pool in Indy I have been constantly on the move and swimming fast. I swam well in Indy on a half taper including a third place finish in the mile just missing a spot on the pool team for the world championships. Then I headed home for a week before leaving for the World University Games in Kazan, Russia to swim the 800 and the 1500 in the pool. I swam extremely well at the WUGS winning my first individual international medal as well as breaking 15 minutes in the 1500 for the first time. I also had a best time in the 800 as well. My time in Russia was cut short though as I left for our open water training camp the day after the 800 final. I traveled on the 15th just 5 days before the 5k here in Barcelona. Training camp was fun switching gears from pool swimming to open water swimming and getting to know the team. I knew most of my teammates so that transition wasn’t bad at all especially because Jordan and Becca, the only two I didn’t know coming in, are really friendly and great to be around. I was optimistic coming into the meet but obviously it hasn’t panned out quite like I thought it would. I’m a little bummed after my performances but I know that this experience will help me grow to be a better swimmer. In both the 5 and 10k races I have learned a lot about major international races where I have very little experience, and I’m looking forward to continuing to learn as I grow in this sport.
I have the team pursuit race left here in Barcelona and regardless of what happens I will look back on this summer as a success. I had a great 1500 at WUGS and found that elusive international medal, and most importantly I achieved a longtime goal of mine breaking 15 minutes in the 1500. I was also able to get more valuable open water race at the international level which I will be able to take with me for my next international races to learn how to translate my pool speed into the open water arena.