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Bill Volckening
August 31st, 2002, 12:23 AM
Goal setting is an important part of an individual fitness swimming program. USMS sponsors postal fitness events throughout the year to help swimmers set goals.

The annual "Check-Off Challenge" is one of the most popular USMS Fitness events. Information about this event is now available in the September/October SWIM Magazine, and online in the "Fitness" section of the USMS web site.

The objective of the Check-Off Challenge is to try each of the 18 swimming events. Participating swimmers get a T-shirt in advance, which lists the events on the back. These events include: 50 free, 100 free, 200 free, 400 or 500 free, 800 or 1000 free, 1500 or 1650 free, 50 back, 100 back, 200 back, 50 breast, 100 breast, 200 breast, 50 fly, 100 fly, 200 fly, 100 IM, 200 IM, 400 IM.

As you swim the events, simply check them off on the back of the T-shirt using an indelible marker. You can swim them during practice, or during a swim meet -- any time, any place, at your own pace!

The 2003 Check-Off Challenge will feature a fun T-shirt for lovers of great literature. Using a clever play on words between (Russian literary genius Anton)"Chekhov" and "Check-Off" -- swimmers will be inspired by the famous quote, "If you cry 'forward,' you must without fail make plain in what direction to go." This quote is especially useful for those who are fearful of the 200 butterfly, 400 IM or 1650 freestyle!

For additional details and an entry form the 2003 Check-Off Challenge, see the September/October issue of SWIM Magazine, or go to: http://www.usms.org/fitness/fitnessevents.shtml

Enjoy!
Bill Volckening
USMS Fitness Committee

pbsaurus
September 4th, 2002, 09:09 PM
Last year I swam all 53 events (18 SCY, 18 SCM, and 17 LCM) at various meets, but the T-Shirts only went up to XL so I passed. I wear XXL. Just a word of advice, those of us who wear these sizes are usually willing to pay a couple of dollars more in order not to be left out.

Bill Volckening
September 4th, 2002, 10:04 PM
Hi Peter.

This year, we do have 2XL T-shirts available, and they are a couple bucks extra. Although I have recently shrunk to XL, as a former 2XL-sized swimmer, I am definitely aware of the need for larger sizes. So, send in your entry and we'll get you covered! Better yet, order three shirts and have one for each course.

Cheers,
Bill Volckening

cinc3100
September 5th, 2002, 12:25 AM
I've did most of the events except for the 1000 yard freetyle or 1650 yard freestyle. I swim in an hour all the strokes between 2,500 to 3,000, so a 1000 yard freestyle or 1650 takes a big chuck out of my workout. Notice that the challenge is for next year.

Bill Volckening
September 5th, 2002, 02:32 AM
Hi Cynthia,

The Check-Off Challenge has been an annual event for several years, and we are now eagerly anticipating the 2003 edition.

Every swimmer has at least one thing they don't do often. Some have never tried a 1650 freestyle, or a 50 backstroke, or the dreaded 200 butterfly! Whatever it is, we hope the Check-Off Challenge offers you the opportunity you to try new things. Tell your friends and challenge your lane mates.

If you need any more information about the event, please feel free to contact me. I will be happy to help.

Have fun!
Bill Volckening

pbsaurus
September 5th, 2002, 06:51 PM
Thanks Bill.

This year the focus was on four or five events so I didn't do the variety thing this year (but I did do the 1650 Butterfly at Rinconada as a challenge), but since they have XXL shirts maybe I'll try to do it again next year!:D

Bill Volckening
September 6th, 2002, 02:04 AM
Great! We'll look for your registration form and will gladly reserve a 2XL shirt for you. While you're getting psyched, I encourage you to challenge your local workout group to participate, too. The Menlo Masters group surely needs something else to make February interesting.

Cheers,
Bill Volckening

Phil Arcuni
September 6th, 2002, 02:29 AM
Peter, I have a great idea:

During the month of February, do the checkoff challenge (either SCY or LCM, depending on how the pool is set) every day!

Wait, that is only 5,350 yards - so you will have to do it twice a day!

;)

Bill, can Peter get 28 XXL tshirts if he does that? (or 56?)

p.s. I will do it with you (once) one of those days.

Phil Arcuni
September 6th, 2002, 02:39 AM
You all may think it a joke, but I am at least partially responsible for Peter swimming that 1650 fly that he mentioned. So it may happen (once, I mean)

Bill Volckening
September 6th, 2002, 11:48 AM
Hi Phil,

We will be delighted to get 56 T-shirts, or more, for each one of the Menlo Masters who does the Check-Off Challenge during February, or any other month. By the way, you have all year to complete the Check-Off Challenge, so if you did it every day, twice, for 12 months, we would need....hmmm....a LOT of T-shirts!

Remember, entries for the 2003 Check-Off Challenge will be accepted until December 10th, 2002 -- and we hope to mail T-shirts in time for the New Year.

Tell your friends and lane-mates!
Bill Volckening

A.G. Thompson
September 6th, 2002, 02:01 PM
Have you considered added the RELAY events to the check-off challenge:

200 Free Relay (SCY, SCM or LCM)
200 Medley Relay (SCY, SCM or LCM)
400 Free Relay (SCY, SCM or LCM)
400 Medley Relay (SCY, SCM or LCM)
800 Free Relay (SCY, SCM or LCM).

Missouri Valley has hosted a relay meet for the last 2 years that offer most of these relays. We have a pool in suburban Kansas City that has a 10 lane SCY x 10 lane SCM pool that has a bulkhead that allow 4 lane of SCM to be LCM. It is a challenge to find meets that have 400 Free and Medley, and especially hard to find meets with 800 Free Relays.

If anyone is interested in a great relay meet, watch the Missouri Valley website for details for the February 2003 meet.

mdhammer
September 6th, 2002, 03:10 PM
Bill,

I don't care how great the t-shirts are ... my 200 fly days are over!

- Maria (Drueckhammer)

Bill Volckening
September 6th, 2002, 03:34 PM
Hi Maria and Anthony,

OK, Maria, if you swim the 200 fly like I do, you can have a very relaxing tour of the pool. C'mon, just try it...the T-shirts are cool, and you know the designer!

Read a little Chekhov if you need further inspiration. I recommend "The Cherry Orchard"...

So, Anthony, hmmmm....relay events....we'll have to think about that one....there was one year when Tracy Grilli added blank spaces on the T-shirt so you could write-in a few of your favorite events, such as the One-Hour Swim. Maybe we'll bring back some write-in options in the future. Thanks for the idea!

:) Bill

pbsaurus
September 6th, 2002, 08:52 PM
Originally posted by Phil Arcuni
Peter, I have a great idea:

During the month of February, do the checkoff challenge (either SCY or LCM, depending on how the pool is set) every day!

Wait, that is only 5,350 yards - so you will have to do it twice a day!

;)

Bill, can Peter get 28 XXL tshirts if he does that? (or 56?)

p.s. I will do it with you (once) one of those days.

Phil, you are quite the instigator, eh? I think I'd get pretty bored (well more bored than usual in February) if I tried something like that :p

But you may be on to something here, maybe we could talk Tim into incorporating that into a workout at say 12:01am on February 1, 2003 to kick off February:D

Bill, I think we need more backstroke events on that T-Shirt (and in the meets too!)

cinc3100
September 7th, 2002, 12:02 AM
200 yard fly is no problem. But after I did the 400 yard IM, I think it effective my swimming when I did a 10 X 100 yards of the various strokes mainly freestyle and breastroke and a little fly. Anyways, my body seems to not liking doing freestyle at once more than 500 yards these days. As a kid I think I swam a 1650 at 21 or 22 something in practice. Never swam anything in freestyle in a meet beyond 500 freestyle. And mainly did that at high school and Jr College meets. So the 200 yard fly isn't the problem, the 1000 yard or 1650 is. I think I can do it, just like you probably could do a 200 yard fly.

Bill Volckening
September 7th, 2002, 03:46 PM
Cindy,

You can do it, and you have now been officially challenged!

I'm going to do the Check-Off Challenge, too -- so I'm not just planning to make everyone else do it while sitting on the sidelines. In fact, I have done the Check-Off Challenge about four times in the past, and quite honestly, the Check-Off Challenge helped me discover many new events I never thought I would enjoy so much. Now, these events are ones I do frequently.

It's like going to a buffet, where you try one of everything on the table. You never know what you'll discover, and you may end up liking it very much!

(By the way, Peter, you could do the 1650 or 1500 as a backstroke swim).

Enjoy!
Bill