Staying in shape is a year-round proposition for Anne Guadalupi. The Cony freshman swept onto the school’s athletic stage last fall serving notice she’ll be one of the better athletes to compete for the Rams by the time she’s finished her high school career.
She finished first at the Eastern Maine Class A cross country championships, surprising a few veteran runners, then made a smooth transition to the pool for the school’s swim team. This spring she plans to run track and compete in distance races, and during the summer, Guadalupi will try a couple of triathlons.
“She’s never out of shape,” Cony coach Jon Millett said. “Her cardiovascular system is just unbelievable.”
Guadalupi admits there’s an adjustment going from running to swimming but you’d never guess that by her results. She set school records in three events this season, finished second in the 200- and 500-yard freestyle events at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class A meet and placed third in both the 100 backstroke and 200 freestyle at the state meet.
For her efforts, Guadalupi has been named Kennebec Journal Girls Swimmer of the Year. Also considered was Cony teammate Kayley McNeff.
Guadalupi, who has been swimming competitively since age 6, said she enjoys the camaraderie of the sport.
“I enjoy being with my teammates, going through the same pain,” she said. “We know in the end it’s all for something. We’re all there for each other.”
Aside from her endurance, Millett said Guadalupi’s best asset is her ability to adapt to change.
“If someone tells me what I’m doing wrong I usually notice,” she said. “I can really feel it but I need someone to tell me.”
The Cony coach said he only has to tell Guadalupi once.
“She’s a coach’s dream,” he said. “You can ask her to make a modification and she’ll do it.”
Most any freestyle event and the backstroke are Guadalupi’s best events, Millett said, emphasizing her ability to kick out under water as a strength. He tweaked her backstroke in practice and the changes paid off.
“It was not an efficient stroke,” Guadalupi said. “He said I needed to rotate a little more and relax your stroke a little so you’re not so tight. He’s always analyzing and he’s always helpful.”
Guadalupi swims Monday through Saturday during the summer at the Kennebec Valley YMCA while also maintaining her running regimen. She’ll also try to bike some so she can tackle a triathlon or two, something her father has done and who encouraged her to give it a shot.
She describes herself as laid back and insists “I just want to race for fun.”
But when the gun or the horn goes off, Millett said her mental toughness kicks in and “she doesn’t like to get beat.”