Nathan Shears put in a lot of extra training into his swimming regime over the past year.
He hit the pool every chance he could. He ran three times per week to improve his cardio. He hit the weights with vigour to build up his strength and stamina.
The 16-year-old Rocky Harbour resident is in an upbeat mood knowing his hard work has paid off for him after an impressive showing at the 2018 provincial short course summer swim championships held recently in Gander.
Shears set a new provincial short-course summer swim championship record in the 50-metre butterfly in the 15-16 age group, claiming bragging rights to a record that has held up for 16 years.
His time in the preliminary heat was 29.44 to set a new record, but then he beat his own record again in the final with a time of 29.05. He actually set a new record by one second in a meet hosted by his own Gros Morne Piranhas Summer Swim Club earlier this year but it wasn’t a sanctioned provincial event.
As a result, it didn’t hold up so Shears knew he had it in him before he went to Gander
It was a record that stood tall since 2002 when Matthew Shave of the Baie Verte Dolphins clamed rights to the record with a final clocking of 29.62.
“It makes me happy. I’m very pleased with myself. The record hasn’t been touched for 16 years so I’m really happy,” Shears said Wednesday from Rocky Harbour.
Shears loves to be active. Volleyball ties up his time in the winter and hiking is listed as one of his favourite things to do with Gros Morne National Park his own little playground. However, he’s always eager to swim for his club and also travel to Clarenville during the summer to test his skills against some of his close swimming buddies.
It was a great day for him and it has him motivated to tackle other provincial records.
“I’m hoping to break another record next year after seeing what happened,” he said.