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The Process

Getting ready for Finals tonight (we’re 12 hours ahead of home, East Coast time) I’ve realized how traditional we have been with our process.  By traditional, I mean that we have traditions, set patterns, that we follow for each meet.  And through the years, they are often the same.

My mom, sister and I (and this trip Nicole) follow the same routine.  Up in the morning, eat breakfast together and then off to prelims.  Sightsee, rest and prepare for finals is how the afternoon time is spent.  And then it’s off to the final heats for the evening.

We arrive to our seats early, with time to settle in, before the races begin. We’re air chair critics, without the critisum.  We sit and analyze each person’s race, not because we’re experts or because we’re being picky, rather we need to pass the time until Michael swims.  Believe it or not, I’m convinced that we get more nervous for his swimming than he does.  He’s cool, calm and collected… or at least looks that way.  He comes out on the pool deck exuding ownership and dominance over the water.  It’s incredible. And then you look at us, rocking in our seats, wringing our hands and sometimes, squeezing each other’s hand.

Tonight we have the 200 Free Final and the 200 Fly semi-final.  Well, Michael has the 200 free and the 200 fly, we’re simply watching and cheering.  Two tough events in a field of tough competitors.  It’s sure to be a good night…

Sitting in our seats the first morning

Headed into the pool and through security

Some sightseeing in The Old City

Michael on the blocks for the 200 free semi-final



About 70percentwater

14-time Olympic Gold medalist

24 responses »

  1. Awesome blogging Hilary, loving picture of the three of you! So detailed I luv this! luv the pic’s 2! Keep us posted…China is reach in culture, well organized event! looking forward to your updates 😀

  2. Love reading this blog. As a loyal Meadowbrook member and a mom of a young NBAC swimmer, we have the priviledge of watching Michael practice daily. We are so eager to hear about how he does and to cheer him on. My seven year old son is a huge fan….go Michael Phelps!

  3. You’re a great sis to be this interested ‘still’ in your brother, after all his success. I’m sure it’s fuel to his fire to have his family present, like this. Thanks for the updates !!

  4. Janet Johnson

    Thanks for the insight and great photos. Wishing Michael all the best and looking forward to watching him and our other great USA swimmers at the Olympic time trials next year in Omaha.

  5. Good Luck !!!

  6. Go USA! And good luck to Michael. We’re rooting for him here in Oklahoma.

    Enjoy your sightseeing. I’m sure there are pretty things to see in Shanghai 🙂

  7. It has been exciting to watch Michael compete from our home in Florida. We are new to swimming in our family. Our daughter is 9 years old and is a natural in the water. She swims a 50 Fly, 50 Free and 100 Free. Although she does great in IM’s also but doesn’t like the Backstroke…ha ha! She recently broke all of her personal records at our Championship Meet last week.

    Michael has been an inspiration to her and we are cheering for him every night!!!

    Go USA!!!

    *I wrote a poem about my daughter and swimming on my wordpress blog also if you would like to check it out!

  8. good luck!!!! not that he will need it. 🙂

  9. Hope that micheal can get 200 fly gold medal tomorrow 🙂 Best wishes to him and god bless

  10. Hi Hilary!

    Sounds like a cool vacation!
    Wishing Michael all the best in his freestyle and butterfly events tonight!

    Cheering from Canada,

  11. Thank You Michael’s sister for posting this, and keeping us all updated. Which sister is this, and is there a way to write you with out leaving a comment.

  12. Thank you for sharing!

  13. Hi ladies!! You all look beautiful! We are watching and wringing our hands with you here in Md. as we watch on the computer/tv! xoxo, Emily

  14. He is incredible!!!!Welcome to SH!~

  15. i love him~~~so fierce. ur the best!fighting~!

  16. We all love Mike! He is a hero!!! Welcome to Shanghai!

  17. I don’t know how Michael’s feeling about missing the gold in men’s 200 freestyle swimming,maybe it’s not real to ask him not to mind it,but in my heart he’s the hero in the pool and he’s a legend in swimming history.No matter what the final result is,I’m sure so many fans will believe in him and hope him believe in himself,too.By the way,welcome your family come to China,wish you have a good time here!

  18. Michael is a great swimmer,all will be fine.

  19. Very nice article and pics!
    I wish to see more updates here(it’s clearly another point of view for this grand tournament).


  20. We are nervous too when watching games..

  21. stephen_xiangyun

    I hope Michael ………NO.1 tonight!(ha! this is chinaenglish!)

  22. My daughter is the bigest fan of Michael ,so she wish him goodluck!


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