OSLO—T&T's top swimmer George Bovell says his new best times and world rankings are as a result of a tough training schedule in the lead-up to the last Olympics in London.
Bovell has emerged as a leading contender in the current FINA/Arena World Cup series where he has already won 10 medals—four gold and six silver.
However, the 29-year-old bronze medallist from the 2004 Athens Olympic, is suggesting that his poor performance at the Olympic may have been as a result of overtraining.
“I have learned from this mistake,” said Bovell, who placed seventh in the final of the 50m freestyle in London. “And it is some of that same work that I have done in the past then that is propelling me now to new best times and to number one and number two spots in the world rankings."
Bovell is now ranked second fastest ever in the 50m freestyle behind 2008 Olympic champion Cesar Cielo of Brazil. His 50m freestyle time of 20.82 at the Sweden leg of the World Cup is even faster than 2000 Olympic champion Anthony Ervin's American record in Berlin when Bovell was second.
Also, his 51.20 second 100m Individual Medley time in Berlin last week is the fastest in the world this year, and the second fastest performance ever in a textile suit. Bovell says he believes his form is peaking because of hard training to make up for lost time after a vehicular accident that sidelined him for weeks.
“During the recovery period I lost a tremendous amount of muscle and fitness and had to restart at zero,” Bovell recalled. “Then I think I made the common mistake of overtraining last season, training to the point where it was breaking my body down too much.”
His hectic training during the months of May and June included nine pool sessions plus three two-hour gym sessions per week. Bovell is currently in Oslo, Norway, resting and recuperating and seeking a Chinese visa to travel to Beijing for the next leg of the World Cup series November 2nd and 3rd.
"I plan to let my body heal and recover, just to do maintenance work in the pool and some heavy lifting in the gym over the next week before heading to China,” he said. “I imagine that the next set of consecutive meets will also be arduous and want to go in as healthy and as rested as possible.” The final two legs of the FINA/Arena World Cup series take place in Tokyo, Japan (November 6-7), and Singapore (November 10-11). CMC