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Connor Jaeger Q&A



  • Introducing the new Athlete Question & Answer section!

    In an effort to make our Talk Swim! community forum more inspirational and fun, we're connecting you with elite athletes.

    Here you can chat with professional athletes and they will answer YOUR questions. Post to the thread and ask them their favorite drills, their go-to post-workout snacks, advice on the sport, ask what keeps them motivated or just say hi!

    This week's athlete jumping on the Q&A is Rio Silver Medalist and American Record Holder, Connor Jaeger. Join the discussion and ask away, he'll be responding to questions all week!

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  • I am not a butterflier at all. Right now I'm trying to work on when I'm breathing. Any tips or tricks on how I can get my head down faster?



  • As an athlete making it as far as you did is simply a dream. Through your journey to Rio what kind of mentality did you carry up until Rio and after Rio? Has your passion for the sport strengthen or weakened? You are an amazing athlete and not only have you inspired me, but I know you inspired athletes and swimmers all around! Tokyo 2020 HERE WE COME!



  • What is your favourite workout?



  • Olympic swimmers make swimming look so easy and effortless. Do you ever have hard races? If you do, what makes them hard?



  • Susan M245 said:

    Olympic swimmers make swimming look so easy and effortless. Do you ever have hard races? If you do, what makes them hard?

    I've had plenty of hard races. People always say that you swim your fastest when you feel good. I think you tend to just forget how much it hurt when you were happy with the result. 400m Free at the 2016 Olympic Trials was easily one of the worst I've ever felt during a 400. I'll remember that one



  • Allison D said:

    What is your favourite workout?

    My favorite days were probably race pace or "short interval"
    Race Pace
    Broken 400m free set up like
    4x50s
    :30 extra
    200 off the blocks

    or
    Short Interval
    10x200s scy on 1:55



  • Elijah c said:

    As an athlete making it as far as you did is simply a dream. Through your journey to Rio what kind of mentality did you carry up until Rio and after Rio? Has your passion for the sport strengthen or weakened? You are an amazing athlete and not only have you inspired me, but I know you inspired athletes and swimmers all around! Tokyo 2020 HERE WE COME!

    Thank You! Elijah that means a lot.
    I am 25 years old. I started swimming was I was 9 years old I think. That was a long time to get adjusted to the stress you feel at a meet like the Olympics. It compounds. All of the state meets as a kid, all of the dual meets in college, all of the NCAA meets, the trials, the world champs, the Olympics. It just keeps compounding.
    With that said, I would admit that Big10 Conference meet my freshman year of college and the prelims of the 1500m free back in London were the two most nervous I had ever been for a race. Probably the most nervous I had ever been in my life.



  • Grace A97 said:

    I am not a butterflier at all. Right now I'm trying to work on when I'm breathing. Any tips or tricks on how I can get my head down faster?

    I would encourage you to play around with your kick timing in relation to your stroke and then your stroke timing in relation to your breath. Look at videos of Phelps swimming fly. Imitate his neck and chin position. Keep the chin low to the water, quick breath and get that face down!
    We used to have guys on the team that wouldn't even lift their chin at all when they took their breath. They would basically keep their face pointed down at the water and lift their whole head out of the water.



  • How do you stay calm before starting a race?any tips on how to control your nerves.



  • Enrique F said:

    How do you stay calm before starting a race?any tips on how to control your nerves.

    I think that being nervous is ok as long as your confident. Nervous doesn't mean you're afraid or don't believe in yourself. Nervous just means that you care. And I think the more you care the better.

    Toward the very end of my career I started giving myself "time outs" from swim-thought. So, up until an hour before I would leave the house/hotel for a final's session I wouldn't allow myself to think about the race. AT ALL. Then, one hour before I left I would let myself starting thinking about it as much as possible. I wanted to get as nervous, excited, and emotional as possible.



  • Do you allow outside influences, events, and circumstances back to when you're in a race or training.



  • Great to watch you on TV in Rio this summer! you must swim a ton of laps in training as a distance swimmer. Do you have any tips to handle the repetition and monotony of longer training sessions? I love swimming for my workouts as an exercise and feel great afterwards -- but sometimes get a little bored.



  • Jael V said:

    Do you allow outside influences, events, and circumstances back to when you're in a race or training.

    Part of what I loved about racing was how I was able to focus on only 1 thing for a period of time. During the race, I'm not thinking about anything other than the race. Leading up to the meet (for a few days) I'm starting to put other stresses in my life on the back burner. I'm trying to make sure that I am giving the emotional energy to the race that it deserves and not be distracted.



  • Rob P said:

    Great to watch you on TV in Rio this summer! you must swim a ton of laps in training as a distance swimmer. Do you have any tips to handle the repetition and monotony of longer training sessions? I love swimming for my workouts as an exercise and feel great afterwards -- but sometimes get a little bored.

    If you aren't already, I would suggest training with a group of people. Being on a team let swimming become the funnest part of my day. If you are already training with a group, I would suggest having more sets in the practice where you're competing to win.



  • Hey Connor, congrats on a silver medal!!

    My coach says I'm really good but when ever I swim at meet I get really nervous and get a bad time. Any advice on how to not get so nervous?



  • David W said:

    Hey Connor, congrats on a silver medal!!

    My coach says I'm really good but when ever I swim at meet I get really nervous and get a bad time. Any advice on how to not get so nervous?

    I would encourage you to find other ways of motivating yourself. Maybe if focusing on trying to achieve a time for yourself makes you too nervous, focus on just racing the people next to you. Take the pressure off of yourself and just have fun chasing the person in the lane next to you. Set goals that way. "I want to be in top 4 of my heat". Something like that and as you get more used to it keep setting new goals.
    Also, believe in yourself, your teammates, and what you do in practice. Your coach wouldn't say those things if he didn't believe it. You just have to believe it!



  • Hello Conner what a pleasure to ask a question I was wondering does swimming run in the family



  • Did you ever play other sports?
    At what age did you dedicate yourself to swimming?



  • Jessica R58 said:

    Did you ever play other sports?
    At what age did you dedicate yourself to swimming?

    I played soccer when I was really young. I played baseball through 5th grade I think. I played lacrosse in 6th grade. Then at the end of 7th grade is when I committed to swimming.



  • colleen w colleen w said:

    Hello Conner what a pleasure to ask a question I was wondering does swimming run in the family

    My older sister swam as well. But, neither of my parents did.


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