Monday, June 8, 2015


I think everyone has a superstition that they either share or refuse to share to others for the fact of being called crazy. I've accepted the label of being crazy, after all, I'm a swimmer, thus I'll tell you about my superstition.

It's not that I think walking under ladders will bring you bad luck (I just avoid them because I'm scared it will come crashing down on me).
It's not that I don't believe in opening up an umbrella indoors (I just don't do it because it doesn't rain indoors).
I don't believe that Friday, the 13th is an unlucky day (I just have lived lucky or very uneventful days on Friday, the 13th).
I don't believe that a rabbit's foot will bring you good luck (I think the concept of them is gross).

So, I've told you what I don't what are my superstitions? Mine, as a lot of peoples are, happen in a sports setting.

Enter the arena of competition swimming. Swimmers are crazy, and I can say that because I am one. We go months on end not shaving our legs, wearing swim suits that are clearly too small for us, we wake up in the darkest and coldest times of the morning to jump into a cold pool and stare at a black line for thousands of yards. The craziness has been built up for many years, which only means that the superstitions associated with the craziness must be pretty good.

Superstition #1: Since I was in 9th grade, I had specific songs for every race. Songs I would listen to before I stepped up on that block. Songs that spoke to me, that motivated me and songs that calmed my greatest fears down. I had to listen to that song associated with that event, or else I wouldn't do well. So the songs, you ask? Of course, anything for my readers:

50 Free: Are You Ready- Three Days Grace
100 Free: Can't Be Touched - Roy Jones
200 Free: Till I Collapse - Eminem
Relays: I'mma Shine - YoungBloodZ

Everything else: Whatever I felt like...but if I didn't listen to one of those songs before my race...I would panic and wouldn't swim as well. Or that's what I believe.

Superstition #2: I believe that I have to say the same prayer before every race. I've been saying this prayer since 9th grade. Nothing about it has changed. I have been superstitious to tell people about my prayer but I'll share it with y'all because I haven't competed in a long time.
Dear Lord,
(Large Inhale) Please be with me as I swim this race. I pray that You give me the courage, bravery and strength to swim this race to the best of my ability, in a way that honors Your name and is the best for my team. Please calm my nerves and allow me to do the best that I can. I pray this in your name. Amen.

Superstition #3: Taper Season. To most swimmers, this is our grace period. After months of training as hard as we can, we finally get a break, finally get a chance to sleep and rest. We finally enter taper. Everyone's taper is different. Some, feel like a million bucks...I am not one of those. If I don't feel  like "poo in the pool" then my taper won't work. Coaches have told me it will regardless of what I feel like. But, being superstitious, I believe that I will not swim well if I don't feel like crap the few weeks before the race.

So, there is an introduction to my superstitions. I think they are all reasonable, after all, I've lived with them for a long time, but my coaches, my teammates and outsiders would probably disagree. But why stop a good thing? Because they're superstitions after all...

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