Most 16-year-old students would cringe if their alarm went off at 4:45 a.m. For Flower Mound High School Junior Alex Sellers, this wake-up time comes twice a week.
“I get up at 4:45 a.m. and drive to Keller for practice that starts at 5:45 a.m.,” Sellers said. “I train until 8 a.m. and then come home and shower before going to school. Once school is finished I come home for about 20 minutes and then go back to Keller and train from 5 to 7:30 p.m.”
What creates such a rigorous training schedule? Her goal of qualifying for the 2012 Olympic swimming trials in Omaha, Neb.
Sellers began swimming when she was in kindergarten but in second-grade she took a break to play basketball. Her love of swimming ultimately brought her back into the pool and she now swims for the Lakeside Aquatic Club in Keller.
Watching the 2008 Olympics with Michael Phelps made Sellers believe she could qualify, but it has not been easy.
“The hardest part of trying to qualify for the Olympic trials is the continuous mental beating that you put yourself through,” Sellers said. “The months leading up to the trials it is hard sometimes to keep going and tell yourself that you want it.”
She is getting plenty of support from her family, close group of friends and FMHS swim coach Daniel Snow; all whom she calls her biggest cheerleaders. For Sellers, swimming is more than just the accomplishments that happen in the water.
“I’ve had so many life lessons that I’ve learned through swimming that I apply outside the pool in my everyday life,” Sellers said.
Lessons about dedication, hard work, and achievement have transitioned into the classroom which resulted in Sellers being named to the 2010-2011 Scholastic All-America Team.
According to the USA Swimming website, “The Scholastic All-America Team is made up of high school student-athletes who have a grade point average of 3.5 or higher and who have achieved the required time standard in a single event.”
Sellers has until the beginning of June to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Trials.