Lilly King says she considers herself a normal college student. But, unlike most of her fellow classmates at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, King holds a spot on the 2015-16 USA Swimming Women’s national team in the 100-meter breaststroke. The 18-year old finished second in the 100-meter breaststroke and won the national title in the 200-meter breaststroke in USA Swimming’s Winter National Championships Dec. 4.
“I’m just doing the usual college kid stuff,” says King.
King earned her spot on the national team at the beginning of her senior year at F.J. Reitz High School. To qualify, she had to post a time that ranked in the top six of the Olympic event. Her time of 1:06.43 broke a school record and is ranked second best in the 100-meter breaststroke by current national team swimmers and sixth in the world.
When Evansville Living last spoke to her in “Swimming to the Top” in the May/June 2013 issue, she was 16 years old balancing her career as a high-level swimmer with school and extracurricular activities. Today, the juggle between school and swim continues, except at a higher level.
“Every day, I get up really early — about 5 a.m. — for swim practice for two hours, then weights or rowing, then class until noon, then back to practice at 3 p.m.,” says King, who is ranked first in the 100-meter breaststroke on the college team. She recently broke the Indiana school and U.S. National 17-18 Age Group record in the 200-meter breaststroke.
This is an exciting time for King with Olympic trials set for this summer in Omaha, Nebraska.
“It’s exciting, but it’s also a bit nerve-wracking,” she says. “I have to constantly make sure I’m doing everything I can to hopefully make the Olympic team in June. It’s a lot of pressure on myself, but I’m really excited for my first Olympic trials.”
For more information about USA Swimming, visit usaswimming.org.