The Animal Lane: Get in the Mind of a Distance Swimmer

By Fitter and Faster Staff

Recorded: Wednesday May 6, 2020 @ 12:30pm EST
Suggested Audience: Swimmers, Parents, and Coaches

Janet Evans won three gold medals at the 1988 Olympics as a 5’3” and 99 pound 17 year old.  She overcame these perceived weaknesses to take distance swimming to uncharted territory over her career and become known as one of the hardest workers in the sport.  After those early wins, she still found success by earning two more Olympic medals.  But the disappointment she faced along the way helped her learn how to develop an identity outside of the swimming and gold medals that were only a part of her life.

Janet is joined by two-time Olympian and Fitter and Faster VP Chloe Sutton in this conversation about hard work, positive mindsets, and the lessons those can teach you outside of the pool.


  • 2:17 How’s your quarantine going?
  • 3:53 How did you begin swimming?
  • 5:16 When did you begin to specialize in distance freestyle?
  • 8:08 Did you have an age group where you began to breakout?
  • 10:12 How tall are you?
  • 11:03 Did you ever think about being shorter than your competitors?
  • 14:39 What did a typical day of training look like for you?
  • 17:47 Did you do any bodyweight dryland?
  • 19:23 “What should my kid be doing to go to the Olympics?”
  • 23:48 What would you have done to a quarantine to stay in shape?
  • 25:50 Janet’s famous windmill technique
  • 29:44 Did you do the fishburn set?
  • 33:33 Do you do a lot of test sets?
  • 34:46 Did you get nervous before races?
  • 37:20 What kind of things would you think about before a race?
  • 40:26 What was your mindset through long races and practices?
  • 46:01 Did you have a race strategy you followed?
  • 49:37 Did you have any major career disappointments or challenges?
  • 56:32 Do you have a favorite memory from your swimming career?
  • 1:02:48 Were you friends with your competitors?

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