By Lucas Cappelletti
Senior Sean Lee had the distinguished honor to swim at the 2016 AT&T Winter National Championships on Nov. 30 – Dec. 3. Held at the Georgia Tech McAuley Aquatic Center in Atlanta, Ga., the facility that held the 1996 Olympic Aquatic events, this four-day swimming event was televised on NBC. This meet is known for its intense competition, according to Lee, who also said it is the fastest and most competitive meet outside of the Olympic Trials, which he also swam in.
The swim meet hosted 400-500 of the country’s top swimmers, including high school, college and professional athletes.
Lee, a four-year-varsity swimmer on Loyola’s swim team and a University of Pennsylvania swim commit, has been swimming at this event since his sophomore year. The veteran swimmer swam in three events, placing eighth in the 200-IM, 18th in the 100 fly and third in the 200-fly. Lee competed in events against collegiate and professional adult swimmers.
In preparation for races, Lee has a routine regimen. “Before a race, I like to get a long warm-up, get loosened up, just get in the zone, and not think about anything else,” Lee said.
In preparation for this national competition, Lee said his training consisted of up to ten practices a week.
Lee said this experience has been especially humbling because swimming with the top swimmers in the country has shown him how far he has come as a swimmer since he started swimming as an eight-year-old.