For the second year in a row, Katie Meili CC ’13 is heading to the NCAA Championships after a stellar performance at Ivies, which this year included three individual titles, two Ivy League records, the Swimmer of the Meet title (for the second straight year), and the Career High Point Swimmer title. Her blistering times earned her NCAA bids in all three of her individual events: the 100 breaststroke, 200 breaststroke, and 200 IM. Unlike last year when Katie went stag, she will be joined in Indianapolis next week by teammate and like totes BFF, Alena Kluge CC ’14, who dropped jaws at Ivies when she shaved nearly 7 seconds off her seed time to claim the Ivy League title in the 400 IM and earn a bid to the NCAA’s. It will be Alena’s debut NCAA Championship appearance and the first time in Women’s Swimming & Diving program history that two swimmers will represent the Lions at the meet. Before Alena and Katie’s big meet, Bwog caught up with the duo to learn the secrets to their success at Ivies, their expectations for NCAA’s, and how they get into those insanely tight suits.
Bwog: Describe the process of preparing for a championship meet like Ivies or NCAA’s. Are there any extraordinary or bizarre measures you go to in order to shave even a fraction of a second off your time?
Katie: As far as preparing for the meets, we swim at a pretty intense level all year long and then right before the meets, we start to do what we call “tapering.” We rest a lot and don’t swim for as long or as hard, and we lift a lot less. You kind of just rest your muscles for the meet so you’re as strong as you could possibly be.
Alena: We also don’t shave our legs and then we’ll shave them the night before.
Katie: We’ll go a few months without shaving, so it’s pretty disgusting – that’s why we always wear pants.
Alena: Yeah, we just try to take care of ourselves and people get hypersensitive about taking care of themselves the week before the meets. We also get our nails done to get a little extra. We take elevators everywhere – like we literally don’t go up stairs. I took the elevator to Ferris. Yes, one floor.