Eighth grader Anna Podurgiel has devoted her life to her passion and talent of swimming. Like most people, as a young girl she took basic swimming lessons to learn how to swim. After a few years of really enjoying those lessons she joined her first team at the age of seven. Once she moved to London she joined the Camden swim team. Currently she is swimming for Chelsea and Westminster swim club as well as the ASL high school JV team.
Anna doesn’t lack motivation. With seven training sessions a week, she is giving her all to insure that she will make nationals this year. She trains on Monday nights and Tuesdays before school with her club. After school on Tuesday she trains with the ASL JV team. On Wednesday she does out of the water training that involves push ups, sit ups and a small amount of weights. Additionally she trains on Thursday mornings and on Thursday nights with her club. She does a quick weight session before school on Friday, but other than that she gives herself a break on Friday and Saturday, unless she has a swim meet where she will compete against other clubs. Or if it is an ASL meet, she will compete against other schools. She ends each week with a training session on Sunday.
Working towards the goal of Nationals, Anna trains vigorously to reach her full potential of being a top ranked swimmer for her age group. British swimming nationals are during the first week of August every year. The top 25 swimmers in each age group for each stroke get invited. However the times you submit in order to be invited must be achieved between March and May in a 50 meter pool. Anna swims 100 meter freestyle and unfortunately last year she was ranked 26th for her age group and wasn’t able to make it to Nationals. She missed it by 1.
Nevertheless, Anna has still been training very hard and as of December 2015 was ranked seventh nationally in the U14 age group for 100 meter freestyle. Also, recently she had a very good swim for the 100 meter freestyle. She swam it in 59.42 seconds. If she keeps her ranking and gets a similar time in between March and May she will easily make Nationals this year. Club swimming and Nationals are Anna’s main priority, but she also swims with the ASL JV team. “There are a lot of really fun meets, and I get to experience what it is like to be on a school team” Anna explained. Anna hopes to keep improving her times and techniques and winning her races at ISSTs in the spring.