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Life Of a Swimmer

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Tahis Ibanez in a race

Tahis Ibanez in a race

Tahis Ibanez in a race

Stephanie Stump, Sports Writer

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One of the most talented swimmers at Madison is Tahis Ibanez. A 16 year-old who has taken swimming and made it a big part of her life, she has earned many awards and has competed in many places around the world. She started swimming in Venezuela at 4 years old. In Venezuela, swimming is a huge part of their culture, just as common as baseball or football here. She practiced many times a week and started competing at the age of eight. A few years later, around ten years old she made it to Nationals in Venezuela.

Then, when she turned 12 her family decided to move to Rexburg, but that didn’t stop her from pursuing her swimming career. About a year later at 13 she began to take swimming very seriously. She started practicing more, and she now practices about eight times a week. Her usual practices are about an hour and a half long, which is about 12 hours per week. She takes practice very seriously but it also continues outside the pool.

Every week she must workout and stick to a diet, consisting of mostly carbs, fruits and vegetables with little to no candy or soda. But all this hard work comes with great rewards. Ibanez has been able to compete in Hawaii, California, Utah, Seattle, Idaho Falls, and Boise. She holds the best times in the district and has placed fourth in high school state. She also had the opportunity to go to Senior Sectionals and placed twelfth in the 100 breaststroke out of hundreds.

Even though she has been swimming for a long time it can still be hard. “It can get tiring physical and mentally,” said Ibanez, “In a race it’s 60% mental and 40% physical.” When she’s getting ready to compete she does many things to keep her calm and to get her mentally ready, she’ll usually listen to music and visualize her race. “Even the littlest doubt can bring your best times down,” she said. She does her best to overcome the fear to be able to race her best.

Over the years she has learned how to be determined and disciplined. Balancing her swimming and school it can be hard, but she makes it work. Ibanez has many dreams and ambitions for her swimming career, she is wanting to swim in college and already has scholarships from many schools, but one day she would love to compete at the Olympics. She’s accomplished a lot, but has put in the work to get there. It’s not always been easy for her but in the end it’s worth it.

 

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