Mexican-American Anita Alvarez is preparing to give her all to win a medal for the US in the synchronised swimming competition at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The 19-year-old swimmer was born in Amherst, New York, where her mother, Karen, who for 30 years has been coaching synchronised swimming, began teaching her to swim when she was just five years old.
Alvarez told Efe on Friday she grew up watching videos of swimming competitions and began to admire Mariya Koroleva, now one of her Olympic team-mates.
Feeling “on top of the world,” Alvarez said she and Koroleva are determined to win the gold against tough competitors from Russia, Austria and Mexico.
Besides their work in the pool, the pair practise Pilates and ballet to gain flexibility, Alvarez said.
Alvarez usually trains in California, but she and other Olympic swimmers will take part in a “boot camp” in Puerto Rico before heading for Rio, where the Games will begin on August 5.