My Life

January 18, 2010
By Samantha Kirby BRONZE, Palatine, Illinois
Samantha Kirby BRONZE, Palatine, Illinois
4 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Swimming: an activity that inflicts personal pain and is one of the hardest sports that a person could possibly do. That definition is exactly what I think swimming is, yet for some reason I still swim all the time. You train for days and thousands of miles to do a race that lasts around two minutes. Even I don’t understand this logic, but I swim because there is no feeling like getting that adrenaline rush after getting the time you wanted or out-touching someone by a one hundredth of a second.

I am standing behind the blocks waiting for the dreaded 200 free. A 200 free includes four 50’s of pure sprint. At this time I am 12 years old and at the last state meet that I will ever have a chance to be at. On top of that, I am in the finals and have a chance to place top six. I size up my competition and realize I am racing a girl that seems about two feet taller than me. Everyone smells like chlorine. It seems to become my perfume and all of the people around me are going through the same thing. Screams are coming from every direction as I step up on the block. I can hear everyone yelling my name. “GO KIRBY!” I loosen up while on the blocks, shaking out my arms and legs is part of my pre-race ritual. Mr. Starter is called and I know I am about to start one of the biggest races I would ever swim. I hear the starter say “take your mark”. I lean forward and grab the blocks with the strongest grip that I can handle.

Splash! Next thing I know I am in the water in the tightest streamline because I know every mistake I do in this race can be between winning and getting second place. I start out sprinting hoping I will have enough endurance to finish the whole race. While during a breath, I see the girl that seems like two feet taller than me has blown right by me. I cannot focus on her because I have to do what I need to do. I look at the bottom and realize I am close to my first turn. I flip and come out of the turn kicking so hard. I do not breathe out of my turn because that is something that slows down your tempo. I keep up my tempo and go into my second 50. I look at the side of the pool and see all of my teammates cheering for me. I go into my flip turn and try not to breathe out of my turn. By this time, not breathing out of a turn is hard because I am already tired from the first 50. I know I can’t though because that could cost me the race. I don’t breathe and head down to the other end for the 3rd 50. I always am especially exhausted on this 50 because I have purely sprinted the first one and this one is used to just keep up your tempo. I look to the side during this 50 and realize I have caught up to the girl and that we are pretty much exactly tied. I stay up with her during this 50 and we are now headed into our last 50. I do this one with everything that I have left in the “gas tank” as my coach would say. I look over at the girl and see that I am now a little bit ahead of her and no one is even close to the two of us. I turn to breathe and see everyone yelling, but I do not hear anything because my ears are filled with water. I am coming to the last 10 yards of my race. I put my head down and swim as hard as I can. I go in for my finish and hit the touch pad as hard as I possibly can.

I look up, hoping for the best because the girl next to me and I had finished around the same time. Looking for name, I see it. Samantha Kirby Lane 3, and look at the number next to it. The number is a one! I start screaming with excitement. All of my teammates, my coach and fans joined in with me. It was like they had been in a state of shock for around twenty seconds before fully comprehending that I had won. I was then the champion of the 11-12 200 free. I could not believe it. I look over at the girl and see the disappointment on her face. I high five and tell her it was a good race. My face is on fire, I reek of chlorine, my hair is a mess, but I could care less because I am the state champion!

Winning that race is one of the biggest adrenaline rushes that I have ever had. I have never felt so good about my swimming. I felt like I was flying through the water and that was exactly what I was doing. No one understands that feeling unless you have gone through it yourself. A swimmer is the only person that will understand swimming’s logic and how it works. An adrenaline rush is an amazing feeling and I wouldn’t

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.


MacMillan Books

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!