ISU swimming team shifts to racing mindset


Blake Lanser/Iowa State Daily

Imelda Wistey, senior in English, swims breast stroke and free style during practice Monday, Dec. 2.

Trey Alessio

The ISU swimming and diving team have been using multiple techniques in practice to prepare for the Big 12 Championships after having two-and-a-half weeks off since senior night against Kansas.

“We’re getting in the mindset of racing. We’ve done hard training throughout the year, and now it’s time to focus on the race, ” said senior Imelda Wistey.

During the weeks of just practice, the Cyclones have been swimming less yardage while maintaining the quality of work within the pool. Practice has included a lot of pace work with even splits to find an “easy speed” and to get a feel for the water. They have also been enjoying more rest to prepare for the Big 12’s.

Sophomore Marissa Engel said during warm-ups, the team has been using bungee cords for “resistance and assistance” while swimming to get that fast feeling.

“Taper is always a weird thing, but it’s always awesome at the meet,” said freshman Karyl Clarete. “One day you’ll feel good [after practice], and the next day, not so great. But practice has been going well. We’re definitely ready to swim fast.”

Heading into the Big 12 Championships, the ISU swimmers are all on the same page. The team’s mindset is one of confidence, and Clarete said everyone on the team is ready to get out and compete.

Iowa State also has a goal in mind of where it should finish when it’s all said and done.

“Top 3 is very possible [for us],” Engel said.

Even with the goal of top 3 in the conference as a team, Wistey said it’s not good to put a place on the team going into the meet, and they’re just going to out there to enjoy what they do.

Times, school records and a chance for some swimmers to make the cut for the NCAA Women’s Championships are on the line at the Big 12’s.

“This is a time to come together and enjoy the sport we love, and that’s what we’re going to do,” Wistey said.

The Big 12 Championships will begin Feb. 26 and run through March 1 in Austin, Texas.