Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Geoff "Rocky Balboa" Huegill swam a personal best in his comeback placing 5th in the final of the 50m 'fly!

The guy has only been back in the pool for 6 months; before that he was off in the wilderness gaining 90-pounds or so while searching for a new direction. This is not uncommon for Olympians who retire.

Now get this, he jumps into a Speedo LZR for the first time, and in a semi-final heat swims a 23.86 for a personal best. A personal best at 30-years-old after being out of competition for 5-years. That is "Rocky material" and it should become a movie becasue the adversity this guy has gone through is greater than the adversity the fictional Rocky Balboa dramatized.

Amazing right? However, that is not all. In January he suffered from an irregular heartbeat and was taken to the hospital for tests but luckily converted to sinus rhythm in time to train and do this well.

From Andrew Webster at The Daily Telegraph:

"...He had an irregular heartbeat. I know that plays on his mind. We had to get him to a doctor straight away. It was definitely a concern. He was concerned, for sure. As it turns out, it wasn't serious. But it was enough to make sure we had to be careful."

Huegill's transformation was there for all to see poolside at the Sydney Aquatic Centre yesterday as he attempted to earn a place on the team that will contest the world championships in Rome in July.


Yet here he was, emerging from his heat swim of 23.86sec to easily qualify for last night's semi-finals, showing off a 1000-watt smile and glistening abdominal muscles. A swimmer and man reborn

Though he didn't make the Australian world championship team, a 23.86 after a health scare such as that while undergoing a massive weight reduction program is indeed inspiring. In 6-months time, he was probably dropping 3-pounds per week. Wow!


Rob D said...

If they make a movie I could play fat Geoff... How many guys that round do you know that can swim a decent butterfly? I'm a shoe in! He was heavier than me but he's taller too so it would proportion out.

Have your people call my people, we'll get this thing made :)

Tony Austin said...

LOLz - You are Masters Swimming's Geoff Huegill and you both are losing weight too.

Ahelee said...

And getting FASTER!
They had better hurry though cause Rob is going to be melting away to pure butterfly buffness before long...

Tony Austin said...

On paper Rob is already faster than me in the 50 free. I have to try and redeem myself on Saturday at Santa Clarita.

Rob D said...

Ahelee, hopefully you're right! I still have a lot of melting to go though, I need to get on my bike more to help burn it off.

Tony- hopefully we get seeded close to each other, it'd be fun to duke it out! What did you enter? I think I was in at 25.9

Tony Austin said...

I was going to put down a 26.2 but I am changing it to a 25.9!

Wendy said...

Oh, I wish I could be there to watch -- here's hoping you fellows draw adjacent lanes!

Tony Austin said...

I am hoping that here is in lane 8 and I am in lane 1 or vice versus.

Rob is a good swimmer

Rob D said...

I'm hoping lanes 4 and 5 dude... ultimate blogger show down! :)

I think if you do the age group math you've got me beat by quite a bit... I'm like 2.5 seconds away from being semi-relevant in the 50 free against people my own age.

Wendy - good luck with your races today!

Tony Austin said...

I hope not but if we are we will probably swim a low 25.00.

Dude,I a actually intimidated and I actually shaved down even though i am wearing a suit.

Rob D said...

I could use a low 25! Let's make it happen!

I am not a guy to be intimidated by btw, I've only got you by .3 in SCY and you haven't swam this year yet.

Which suit are you going to wear? I'm definitely bringing the Tracer Light with me.

Tony Austin said...

Tracer goggles, Tracer suit, black cap and a lot of nervous energy