Queen of the breaststroke and Ask, Listen, Learn Superstar Rebecca Soni just finished an impressive week of swimming performances at the US Swim Team Trials in Omaha, Nebraska! The morning after her win, she was on the main Aqua Zone stage signing autographs with Ask, Listen, Learn.
We caught up with the Gold medalist swimmer to ask her what her secret is. Here’s the scoop!
Q: We think you did an incredible job in the water at Swim Trials this week! How do you feel about your event performances?
A: Thanks! First of all, there are so many unbelievable athletes who competed at the Trials, and I am so thankful and fortunate to have the opportunity to dive into the same pool as them. As for how I feel about my events, I feel really good! And I don’t get that satisfaction from getting a high score or winning a race. I get that satisfaction from knowing that I gave it my all and tried my best, and if you can truly say that, you’ll never be disappointed — no matter the outcome.
Q: You are an amazing athlete and have been so successful in your swimming career. Were there ever any times where you failed, and if so, how did you overcome those failures and stay motivated to reach your goal?
A: This might sound a little strange, but I think sometimes failure and adversity both get a bad rap. Failure is great because when you fail, you are placed at a very important crossroads where you have to decide, “Am I going to accept this failure and quit, or am I going to learn from this failure, work to prevent this from happening again and become a better person because of it?” And from my experience, that’s rarely been an easy question to answer. But, I just always remind myself that failures are bound to happen at some point in my life, and as long as I continue to make good decisions, take care of myself and do everything to the best of my ability, I will be successful. And I think the same is true for anybody.
Q: A lot of your biggest fans are middle school-aged kids. Middle school is such a fun time for so many of us, but it is also a time when there is a lot of pressure to do things, such as drinking underage, that might make it hard for kids to reach their goals. When you were in middle school, you were competing as a swimmer. How did you avoid giving into those pressures to make unhealthy choices that could have kept you from becoming the champion athlete you are today?
A: Funny story— a lot of people don’t know this, but when I was growing up, I really wanted to be a gymnast. The only reason I joined my older sister Rita’s swimming club was because I was tired of having to wait for her to finish her swim classes! But I’m so glad I got into swimming, because it quickly became one of my biggest passions in life, and since I was so in love with swimming, I didn’t want to do anything that could stop me from competing. So, I think it’s really important for kids to figure out what they’re passionate about and get involved in it. After I got into swimming, I wouldn’t have made any decision that I thought might kept me out of the water—especially underage drinking.
Q: For all the kids and fans out there chasing their dreams, what advice would you give them?
A: Keep chasing! That’s the most important thing you can do is to keep going after your goals and never giving up. There’s going to be times when you get discouraged or want to quit, but when you push through those tough times and accomplish your goals, it will feel so much more worth it.
Congratulations to Rebecca on her outstanding showing at the Swim Trials! We are proud to have her on our team, and we wish her the best of luck in the upcoming summer games!
In what ways have you chosen to say “YES” to a healthy lifestyle and “NO” to underage drinking? Leave us a comment or tweet @AskListenLearn to let us know!