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Exclusive Interview with Gian Santos – World Aquatics Junior Swimming Championships

Tell us something about yourself

I was born and raised in California, I am a senior student at Tesoro High school. I have a 13 year old sister named Gianina and I also have 2 pugs named Milo (3) and Lia (1).

What motivated you to become a sports person?

Initially, I joined a summer swim clinic when I was 7 years old just to have something to do while school was out. I remember being the slowest in the group and could not keep up with my teammates at the time. As a result, I chose to continue to swim at a club, in hopes of getting faster rather than it just being a summer activity. Little did I know that it would lead me where I am today.

What sports do you love other than swimming?

Because swimming is such a commitment, I rarely have the opportunity to try and be involved in other sports, but when my teammates have spare time, we often spend it playing rallies of volleyball.

As an athlete, what kind of diet do you prefer?

My diet does not consist of anything in particular, but I make it a point to not eat junk food too much, and to include veggies and fruits into my daily diet. Otherwise it’s mostly rice, pasta, and meat, among others.

Do you think the life of an athlete is tough compared to other professionals?

I feel like being an athlete is tough, regardless of the sport, and gets exponentially more difficult at the elite level. Having never been a professional in any other field, I cannot speak for them. However, burnout is very common among many athletes, and goes to show how their training regimens take a toll on their bodies, both physically and mentally.

What are three reasons why you like being part of the Philippine team?

I really love the bond my teammates and I have established, our camaraderie, how easily we all connect with one another, how we celebrate our triumphs and even more so, support each other at our lowest. Everything in between is filled with so much fun and laughter and since I do not see them often, we always try our best to make the most out of our little time together.

I also find pride in being able to represent my country at the international level, a feat only few have the opportunity to do. Lastly, I hope to inspire the younger generations to follow in my footsteps, promote the love of the sport and help advocate for water safety as well.

Who inspired you as a young athlete?

As a young athlete, Michael Andrew always inspired me. From his unique training style of USRPT (Ultra Short Race Pace Training), to the public expression of his unwavering trust in the Lord, he has always been an athlete I aspire to be like.

What is the toughest aspect of being an athlete?

The toughest aspect of being an athlete is learning to accept failure. Accepting a shortcoming, learning from it, and quickly moving past it is still something I am trying to do to this day. Being able to let go of what is out of one’s control is integral to success as an athlete, a quality that displays maturity and humility.

Do you have any advice for young people who want to start a career in sports?

For the younger generation, it is important to love what you do, and to want to push yourself to be the best athlete you can be. The competition is fierce, may often seem discouraging at first, but remember that being in sports isn’t always about winning. It is also about personal growth and development. Being in a sport has taught me self discipline, perseverance, sacrifice, that I would not have found anywhere else. Of course, winning is the end goal, but always reflect and appreciate how far you have come.

Tell us your social media accounts:
Instagram – gian.santosss
Facebook – Christopher Santos

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