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View Full Version : Can a former age-grouper do a lifetime best 20+ years later



Water Rat
June 4th, 2009, 02:05 PM
New here so apologies if this is well-trodden territory, but I'm a 41 year old former age group swimmer. I was pretty good, not great but decided to quit swimming at 17 to pursue "other interests" in college. Basically, I just burned out.

Recently, I found myself back in the pool and have swum a few meets and really love it. My times have been pretty good but I wonder if I can ever do a lifetime best at this age? Anybody out there in their 40's or so continuing to kill it in the pool? What are my chances? So far I'm within 2 or 3 seconds of my best 100fr (:49+) and 100br (1:03).

funkyfish
June 4th, 2009, 02:15 PM
My guess is that if those times are for yards then I would say you've got a good shot. I had a similar time for the 100yd free back in the day and I am within 1/2-1 second of reaching that time. Also, I think that given the swimsuit technology today (he said as he opened the can), I think it should be very "doable."

Ultimately go in with the mindset of beating that time and start training for it. Good luck. :bouncing:

Jeff Commings
June 4th, 2009, 03:03 PM
Mike Ross is our shining example of swimming lifetime bests in your 40s.

http://216.197.124.49/SwimmingWorld/SWRadio/July08/MikeRoss.wmv

pwolf66
June 4th, 2009, 03:13 PM
I don't see why not. Just train smarter, not harder and you should be able to reach those times. Especially the Breast. The new Breaststroke rules ROCK compared to when you and I were swimming it.

ande
June 4th, 2009, 03:59 PM
Yes, it's entirely possible, but it depends upon how much and what kind of training you do from now until you develop the ability. Recently I swam times that were close to what I did as a Senior in high school. If swimming those times is your goal, it is likely to take considerable effort.

Ande


New here so apologies if this is well-trodden territory, but I'm a 41 year old former age group swimmer. I was pretty good, not great but decided to quit swimming at 17 to pursue "other interests" in college. Basically, I just burned out.

Recently, I found myself back in the pool and have swum a few meets and really love it. My times have been pretty good but I wonder if I can ever do a lifetime best at this age? Anybody out there in their 40's or so continuing to kill it in the pool? What are my chances? So far I'm within 2 or 3 seconds of my best 100fr (:49+) and 100br (1:03).

Midas
June 4th, 2009, 05:46 PM
I'm 36, so a little younger, but I've already eclipsed my best 100 FR time from my youth, though I rarely swam that race back in the day. I was and am a breaststroker, and so far I'm about 1.5 seconds off my personal best 100 BR time.* My best Masters 200 BR time is about 6 seconds slower than my "all time" PB. The significant reduction in yardage from my youth really hurts me there, I think. But with smart training, I think that you can still swim as fast as you did as a kid at the shorter distances you're talking about. I certainly hope to!

*Full disclosure--I *was* wearing a B70 when I swam my best Masters time (though it was the older pointZero3 model) so that might have helped a little.My Masters personal best in a "regular" suit is about 2.0 seconds slower than my lifetime PB, so at most the suit can be credited for .5 seconds, though many other factors could have been responsible for some or all of the difference in my times as well.

gigi
June 4th, 2009, 08:22 PM
I haven't yet, but I fully expect to meet or beat my best times from my younger days. I'll let y'all know when that happens!

tjrpatt
June 4th, 2009, 08:54 PM
I am 32 and 15 seconds off my lifetime best in my 200 LCM fly(2:28.59). I did a 2:13 at 18 and when I was 70 lbs lighter. If I can do that kind of time in a middle Linebacker's body, it is possible. Then again, when I was 70 lighter, I still sort of have a middle linebacker's build

Swimmy83843
June 4th, 2009, 09:16 PM
I would say so. I have beaten or am less than a half a second off my best time for my 100 Free and 100 Fly. 100 Back I'm still a couple of seconds off. I have not swam my HS events, 500 fr, 200 fr, 200 IM, as a master though. I had only been back in the water after a shoulder issue that kept me out of the water for over a year. Also I was just wearing regular jammers, nothing fancy.

RFBG
June 5th, 2009, 01:25 AM
My sister, Aida Davis, swam competitively for 5 years and quit at 16. Her PB in 100m free was 1'10"
13 years ago at 46 she started training again. Her first international masters championship was in Michigan, 1996, her time 1'17".
Her last one was Perth, 2008, at 59, 1'11", and a gold medal. Shortly afterwards she went 1'9"95, improving her PB. She wore a B70.
She trains smarter now, swimming being her main activity.

CreamPuff
June 5th, 2009, 10:12 AM
Yes. I did by buying a tech suit. I'm mid 30s. Without a tech suit I eeked out some lifetime bests (comparing poly to poly).

Not sure I train "smarter" at all. I train for my enjoyment. Still don't know exactly what training "smarter" means as it applies to each person's specific goals. . .
And shouldn't we train "smart?" If we train "smarter," then the question is smarter than what? Than what we did as a kiddos? I would say I train smarter than when I was a kid. Does not mean I'm training correctly. . . I digress.

jroddin
June 5th, 2009, 02:46 PM
At 40 years old, my times are all faster than my high school best times (except for the 200/500 free). Some of the time drops are significant (23.5 to 21.9 in the 50 free). But I never took any time off and weigh the same as I did in high school, so I may not be a good data point. But to answer the original question: yes, it can be done.

Lastly: nobody has mentioned it yet, but Dara Torres has been setting American Records in her 40s (and obviously doing lifetime bests in order to do so).

JimRude
June 5th, 2009, 07:02 PM
At 45, I am close to my best times out of high school; those times were set in paper suits, my current ones a B70. Apples to apples, I am therefore still (quite) a way off. I am nowhere near to my best college times, though I hope to get considerably closer in 2010.

Glenn
June 5th, 2009, 07:59 PM
1970 - 20 year old, 500 free 5:37+
2007 - 57 year old, 500 free 5:33.62
2009 - 59 year old, 500 free 5:36.52

1970 - 20yo, 1000 free 11:56.2
2009 - 60 yo, 800 scm 10:21.72 (equal to 11:50 scy)


Better training, drive, technique, goggles:banana:

stillwater
June 5th, 2009, 10:16 PM
Better training, drive, technique, goggles+

In 1970 I had goggles.

What kind of suit are you wearing?

Glenn
June 5th, 2009, 11:37 PM
Was going to school in New Jersey, goggles hadn't arrived yet.......

For my 5:33 a speedo Fastskin, my swims in 2009 B70.

In '07 I swam a 54.31 in a Fastskin, in '09 I swam a 54.83 twice in a B70.

Glenn
June 5th, 2009, 11:38 PM
54.31 & 54.83 were both 100y free

matysekj
June 5th, 2009, 11:47 PM
Check out this old thread on a similar topic.

stillwater
June 5th, 2009, 11:55 PM
Nice swims for an old dog.

In California (from my dusty recolection) goggles were pretty popular in 1970.

I also remember grooving on the halos around street lights, pre-goggles.

Good luck in your quest.

Superfly
June 6th, 2009, 09:57 AM
Hi!
I have a similar history to you Mark. Left off at 17 and started swimming again at 34 years of age. I am now 38. Started heavy training with 4-5 swims per week and 2-3 weightlifting sessions per week some 2,5 years ago.
I broke my all time best times 2 years ago and have improved ever since. I had my fastest two swims this spring ever:
50 breast SCM 28.63 (32.14 at 17 years of age)
100 breast SCM 1.03.77 (1.10.15 at 17 years of age).

Go for it! Everything is possible!
Best regards
Per

Water Rat
June 7th, 2009, 01:13 PM
Thanks for the inspiration. I'm going for it.

Chris Stevenson
June 7th, 2009, 01:47 PM
But I...weigh the same as I did in high school.

Nobody here likes you, Jeff. :)

jroddin
June 9th, 2009, 08:02 AM
Well, at least I'm not as much of a nerd as I was in high school.

Oh wait a minute...:doh: