View Full Version : 1st meet in 22 years: need help

PDX Rain
October 30th, 2008, 11:49 AM
I am hoping for some advice:
What is a good warm up set ?

The meet starts at noon.
What is a good breakfast ? What time to eat? Would you than snack or have a lunch? what would you eat?

It was alot easier when I was 20....

October 30th, 2008, 01:19 PM
I am hoping for some advice:
What is a good warm up set ?

The meet starts at noon.
What is a good breakfast ? What time to eat? Would you than snack or have a lunch? what would you eat?

It was alot easier when I was 20....

Welcome back! I assume you're talking about the NW Zone meet in Hood River this weekend. This meet marks the third anniversary of my somewhat less than triumphant, but still gratifying, return to competition after a 27 year hiatus. My first meet back was Zones 3 years ago at David Douglas. I'm still working out my answers to the questions you raise, but here's what I've tried to do.

The pool is 10 lanes, so there should be a decent amount of room for warm-up if you get in right at noon on Saturday and 8 on Sunday. I feel like I need at least 800 - 1,000 m to get nice and loose, and prefer about 1,500, so I usually do a fairly long, slow free swim at first, trying to flip every turn to get used to the walls, especially if it's a new pool to me. After it gets crowded, people will start hanging at the end of each lane, making turns difficult or impossible, so make sure you get some clean looks at the wall. In my experience, each pool has a slightly different sight picture for flip turns.

After that, I try to do some higher intensity sets of 50s or 100s. If there's room for a kick only 25 or 50 without holding people up, I'll do a few to try and get my heart rate up. If it's nose to toes, I'll overkick a set or two to get the same effect. If I'm doing a 200 or over, I'll try to do some pace 50s or 100s to get a feel for what my desired pace will feel like. Generally, I won't be able to do a 100 at even a 200 pace, but I can at least I can get a feel for how much faster than my pace set I need/want to be in the actual race. Often, the warm-up crowd ebbs and flows, so if it seems over crowded, do some starts, stretch, or just hang out and wait for it to back off. Often, I've found that the last 10 minutes are the least crowded.

I try and keep an eye open for the beginning of the start practice. For your first meet back, you will want to do some starts to make sure your goggles are tight enough, your suit feels comfortable, and to get used to the blocks. Despite practicing starts before my first meet, I lost my goggles and a contact in practice. Bring extra goggles, and if you wear them, contacts, just in case.

I will do at least a few starts, usually just a dive and streamlined glide first, then a dive and strong breakout with 2 - 3 good strokes, then I'll try and get in an all-out 25 or 2, generally in each stroke I want to do that day. Remember that the start (sprint) lane are one way, but I'll usually try at least one flip (without coming off the wall, of course) at the end of a hot 25 to get used to the wall sight picture at or near race pace. I've never been barked at or told I can't do it by a marshal.

I've alternated back and forth between going in wet or dry for my events after the warm-up. Just go with how you feel; if you feel like a quick 50 or 100 will help get you in the groove for your race, go for it. We're running 7 lanes, which with the one empty lane buffer will only leave a couple for warm-up/cool-down, though, and those will be crowded while the events are going off.

On Saturday, I'll probably have a decent breakfast, maybe some bagels and eggs. According to the timeline (if you don't have the timeline, PM me your email and I'll get it to you) my first event isn't until 2:30, so I'll also eat some lunch. I'm partial to packing a couple good ol' peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Easy on the stomach, good protein, and easy to make. I usually have a baggie of raisins for quick energy, and a box of Cheez-Its. My teammates give me crap about the Cheez-Its, but they are an easily digestible fill food. Once the meet starts, I usually don't eat a whole lot, and this meet should move rather quickly, making food more or less irrelevant. I'll usually do a Gu pack or two during the meet for energy. On Sunday, I'll probably just warm up and eat a bagel or two. I should be done with my events by lunch time.

Bring a water bottle, a deck chair (the bleachers are really uncomfortable), and some warm clothes to hang around in.

Good luck, swim fast, and have fun.

Redbird Alum
October 30th, 2008, 01:29 PM
Not knowing what you are swimming or when , it's hard to predict what your best warm-up might be. There is alot of good advice in the first post.

My advice... get loose, do some starts and turns, a little speed work, and stay warm when you're not in the pool. Don't forget to warm down and get loose again between your events... not far, just enough to keep from getting tight.

Most of all... enjoy the ride!

October 30th, 2008, 02:33 PM
Very good advise in the 1st reply.

Noon time meet...

Have some protein for breakfast which will stave off sugar highs and lows.
Take a few light snacks, or some fruit, and some bottled water. No need for a meal. Save that for after the meet.

Warm up...

Go easy until you feel loose. When you feel ready, try a few sprints.
Get a feel for the starting blocks and the walls. Every pool is different even if they're all the same size and shape.

Keep warm in between events, and have an extra dry towel on hand.

Sit back and enjoy. Good luck.

October 30th, 2008, 03:19 PM
Bill has some good advice. Not much to add but have fun. Good luck. I hope you enjoyed the entry form (my contribution to OMS)