A little about me...

My name is Mariya Koroleva and I'm a member of the U.S. Olympic Duet for the sport of synchronized swimming. I've been swimming for 17 years (yikes!) and I've been on the national team for 9. I graduated from Stanford University in 2013 and am almost finished getting my masters degree in sport management from the University of San Francisco. I love chocolate, cross stitching, scented candles and sunsets. Follow me on my journey to my second Olympics in Rio de Janeiro!

Friday, July 29, 2016

Team USA Processing and Puerto Rico training camp

Last weekend, Anita and I officially began our road to Rio starting with team processing in Houston. This is one of the most exciting things athletes get to do before heading off to the Olympics - getting our official Team USA gear!  I feel like this is when you really start to feel the excitement of the Olympics. We started the day by taking some photos and doing a Rapid Fire Challenge on the Team USA Facebook page. We usually end up laughing for half of it so we get screenshots looking like this:

Playing around with digital media is always fun and we like to have a good time with it. Then we got fitted for Omega watches, got a P&G goody bag and learned about how to protect ourselves from Zika (everyone's favorite topic of conversation). We had a quick lunch and then it was time for the best part...getting our outfitting!

Nike and Ralph Lauren sure know how to make the USA athletes feel like royalty. A personalized fitting room, volunteers to switch out any sizes and over 100 pieces of clothing, shoes and accessories. It really feels like Christmas morning in July. Throughout the day we got to hang out with some of the other athletes from different sports, which is always nice for us since Anita and I are pretty isolated a lot of the time during our training. After a few hours of trying on clothes and getting fitted for our Opening and Closing Ceremonies outfits, we had to re-pack our bags and mail one bag home. Somehow we finished way after all of the other athletes and only had a few hours left before our shuttle to the airport. This was already our second day without training so our coach Lolli had us do a gym workout and a quick swim before we got on the plane. Even though the only thing you want to do after a nonstop day is to lay down and take a nap, we knew that we would feel a lot better at training the next day if we got our blood flowing. After our short swim we were off to the airport for our midnight flight to Puerto Rico!

 I absolutely hate red eyes because I can never fall asleep on the plane and this flight got us into San Juan at 5:30am 😱 so needless to say I was a zombie when we landed. Luckily, Lolli let us sleep for a few hours before we had our first practice. This is our second week of training here in PR. Unfortunately we had to move from our location in San Juan to the other side of the island because there were some problems with the pool but overall things are going well! It is very hot and humid here so it's a challenge to stay hydrated but luckily we've got some great air conditioned hotel rooms to cool us off after practice. This Friday we will perform an exhibition for the public, which will be our last competition simulation before we head to Rio! It's crazy to think that the Olympics are starting in only a few short days. We've been preparing all season for this! Stay tuned for another post about our training camp :)


Monday, July 25, 2016

Olympic blog is back!!

 Hi everyone! My Olympic blog is officially back just in time for Rio 2016. For those of you who are reading this for the first time, I kept a blog during my last Olympics in London in 2012 to share my experience with my friends, family and fans. Feel free to scroll down and check it out! It's crazy to think that I wrote those posts four years ago and here I am now, about to compete in my second Olympics. While I never expected or even dreamed about becoming a two-time Olympian, I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to represent this country once again at the highest level of sport and to compete alongside the best athletes in the world. I hope you guys enjoy following along as my duet partner Anita and I go into our last two weeks of preparation for Rio. If there is anything you would like me to talk about or have any questions for me, feel free to leave a comment or email me at mkoroleva90@gmail.com. Can't wait to get this started!

Xoxo Mariya