Ema Rajic, sophomore, qualified for Olympic Qualifiers at sectionals in Wisconsin on March 11th with a time of 1:10.24 in the 100 breaststroke. Rajic was a full second under the qualifying cut, 1:11.49.
Olympic Trials for the United States will be held in Nebraska from June 26 – July 3. The top two swimmers in each event move on to the Olympics, which will be held in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil from August 6-13.
As of right now, there are 1786 people who have qualified for trials; around 900 of them are women. Of the 122 women who have currently qualified in the 100 breast, Rajic is ranked 55th.
Rajic has been swimming for 9 years, since she was 7. “My sister [Gabi Rajic, a rising junior at Indiana University] decided she wanted to join swimming because she thought it was a cool sport. My mom just put me in the sport because she didn’t want to drive us to two different practices,” said Rajic on her decision to swim.
Rajic spends most of her time at the pool now. “My training schedule consists of two 2 hour practices Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, then one 2 hour practice on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I also have weights and dryland and different cardio sessions throughout the week. It’s a grueling process, especially with school. It’s hard to get enough sleep while maintaining my grades and swimming just over 20 hours per week.”
Before a race, Rajic prepares by listening to music. “I listen to a lot of music before a meet or practice, and that really puts me into the zone. I also like stretching and envisioning my races,” said Rajic.
“I think it would be pretty cool if I qualified for the Olympics. It’s very unlikely that I’ll go, but if I went, I would just enjoy spending time there in Rio,” said Rajic.