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abc
December 10th, 2007, 02:26 PM
I have seen a lot of posts on this board about technique and training, all in the effort to swim faster. Thereís a lot of good stuff out there in my opinion. However, one area which I always found beneficial to swimming faster was my pre-race ritual (for lack of a better term). Iím not talking about getting the proper amount of sleep the night before or eating the right kinds of food. Iím talking about the specific routines I would follow immediately before the race. For instance, I liked to have my goggles on my face and ready to go well before the start of the race. I also liked to splash some water on my body to get it adjusted to pool temperature. I donít like talking to anyone immediately before the swim and would usually lightly shake my arms (in an effort stay loose and focused). When on the blocks, I also stood very hunched over--ready to grab and go--and only focused on the next x amount of yards/meters before me. Sometimes I would reiterate my race strategy in my mind when the official would call for quiet before sending us to the blocks. All of these things served to get me ready to swim fast. It didnít matter where I was or how old I was (started doing it as an age grouper), the routines helped my body understand that I was preparing for maximum effort. I think routines like this shouldnít be overlooked. You can do all the right training, but if youíre not ready mentally come race day, you probably wonít go as fast as you could have. What are some of your routines to prepare for a personal best?

swimshark
December 10th, 2007, 04:32 PM
A lot of what you di is similar to what I do as well. I also like to picture my race in my head, even down to picturing my finish time.

Alison

CreamPuff
December 10th, 2007, 05:16 PM
I'm laughing as I'm thinking of what I do. . .

I like to hand hubby my glasses right before I hop onto the blocks. He gives me a kiss and yells, "Race!" and "Go Fast!" while shaking his fist in the air. I always get a chuckle out of this.

jim clemmons
December 10th, 2007, 09:26 PM
It doesn't bother me to talk with people, in fact it calms me a little or I'd probably just get too worked up - maybe. I like to throw down an ibuprofen and a RB (or a :coffee:) about a half an hour before an afternoon race. Maybe that's why I 'll talk with others. :D

Allen Stark
December 10th, 2007, 10:51 PM
I want to get to the pool at least 2 hr before my first event.I warm up for about 30 min,meditate for about 15 min,wander around and talk to friends about 20 min,lie down and visualize my race about 25 min.About 30 min before I swim I go and put on my Fastskin(don't warm up in your Fastskin,it should be dry) and wander around with increasing amount of bouncing and flailing my arms until I am warmed up.Just before I get on the blocks I like to shake the hands of my heat mates(we are all in it together to swim fast.) Then get on the block a the long whistle and be ready to go.Maybe I am a little obsessive,but it keeps me excited not anxious(mostly)

funkyfish
December 11th, 2007, 12:22 AM
I used to make voodoo dolls of the other swimmers and stick pins in them before the race (this was back in high school). I've since been told that that was un-sportsmanlike so I don't do that anymore. I now have a voodoo doll of myself and just before the race I have my wife slingshot it in the direction I want to go. Usually works unless her aim is off, then I don't swim straight. Or when it starts sinking in the pool and I start sinking in the middle of a race (I hate that).

Probably what I should do is listen to my ipod, and relax and think fast. I like the psyching up that Lightning McQueen does. I think this will be my 101st post.

:banana::banana::banana::banana::banana::banana:

SwimStud
December 11th, 2007, 12:10 PM
Probably what I should do is listen to my ipod, and relax and think fast. I like the psyching up that Lightning McQueen does.

I tried the "I am speed" mantra this past weekend...I think my mind interpreted it as "You are unfit and slow!" Ack, at least I got up there and swam!

LOL

Blackbeard's Peg
December 11th, 2007, 01:10 PM
My pre-race ritual changes from meet to meet and certainly doesn't stay consistent within a meet.
Pre-Meet:
I love having an omelette and/or Blueberry muffins the morning of swimming: this weekend, I had the omelette on Saturday, but Sunday, had to wolf down a pair of mini danishes, bacon and a muffin on my way out the door to warmups... (had a PB in the 400 an hour later).
Sometimes I stretch a lot; sometimes a little; sometimes not at all.

Pre-swim:
Sometimes there is ipod; more often, there is not. Sometimes there is looking-intensely-at-pool concentration; more often, I am chatting it up with a timer, fellow competitor or other swimmer on deck. Sometimes I will warm up ~10 minutes before an event; more often, the warmdown from the event 1/2 hr ago will do just fine.

I think the only thing that stays the same is putting on my goggles, then cap, about ~3 minutes before I swim, and making sure they're fog-free and secure as I step up on the block; and my concentration on the race as soon as I step up on the block.

SwimStud
December 11th, 2007, 01:27 PM
My pre-race ritual changes from meet to meet and certainly doesn't stay consistent within a meet.
Pre-Meet:
I love having an omelette and/or Blueberry muffins the morning of swimming: this weekend, I had the omelette on Saturday, but Sunday, had to wolf down a pair of mini danishes, bacon and a muffin on my way out the door to warmups... (had a PB in the 400 an hour later).
Sometimes I stretch a lot; sometimes a little; sometimes not at all.

Pre-swim:
Sometimes there is ipod; more often, there is not. Sometimes there is looking-intensely-at-pool concentration; more often, I am chatting it up with a timer, fellow competitor or other swimmer on deck. Sometimes I will warm up ~10 minutes before an event; more often, the warmdown from the event 1/2 hr ago will do just fine.

I think the only thing that stays the same is putting on my goggles, then cap, about ~3 minutes before I swim, and making sure they're fog-free and secure as I step up on the block; and my concentration on the race as soon as I step up on the block.

you forgot your other ritual: upsetting the ladies of the 1776 team by displaying your "plumber's" butt cleavage atop your legsuit...and I quote: "...it's a shame because he is such a good looking young man too!"
:rofl::lolup:

Julie Roddin
December 11th, 2007, 01:52 PM
you forgot your other ritual: upsetting the ladies of the 1776 team by displaying your "plumber's" butt cleavage atop your legsuit...and I quote: "...it's a shame because he is such a good looking young man too!"
:rofl::lolup:

HA HA! I think everyone saw that cleavage!

For my pre-race ritual, it varies. Sometimes I try to focus on my race, but usually I do better when I just chill out and chat with others before my heat. I do get paranoid about my goggles so I usually mess with them and clear the insides right before the race starts.

I never come up with a mantra before the race, it just hits me during my swim. Last weekend in the 200 back it was "Just keep swimming, don't give up" and the 50 back was "I AM A SPRINTER" and the 100 back was a close race and I knew it going into the 3rd turn so it became "Who wants it more?" and "It will be over soon!" And my favorite was the 400 free..."DO NOT lose the bet!" And I won the bet by .58 and I dropped 11 seconds off my best time! YAY!

As far as warming up before events, I usually try to jump in and do about 200 before each of my swims. Not sure why, I always just feel like it helps!

Julie

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craiglll@yahoo.com
December 11th, 2007, 04:04 PM
Make sure my suit is on right side out.

Blackbeard's Peg
December 11th, 2007, 04:06 PM
you forgot your other ritual: upsetting the ladies of the 1776 team by displaying your "plumber's" butt cleavage atop your legsuit...and I quote: "...it's a shame because he is such a good looking young man too!"

Let me publicly apologize... due to recent injury-related weight-gain and hockey-related growth of thighs, that was as high as it would go... i was not the only person who was surprised that I could still get that suit on.

;):fish2::banana:

imspoiled
December 11th, 2007, 04:38 PM
As aparently the only person at the meet who missed seeing your clevage (sorry Muppet, I was distracted by seeing Stud in his Speedo!:banana:)... an argument can be made that there are worse things on display at a masters meet than the backside of a 20-something. I'm still having flashes of the sight of one of my own team mates in a tie-dye weiner bikiner :notworking:.

Should we even discuss the crazy lady in the purple fastskin? On second thought, let's not.

Swimmy
December 11th, 2007, 06:52 PM
Wow. I missed all the excitement this weekend. Glad you all had fun!
:cheerleader:

The Fortress
December 11th, 2007, 09:32 PM
As aparently the only person at the meet who missed seeing your clevage (sorry Muppet, I was distracted by seeing Stud in his Speedo!:banana:)...

I missed the cleavage at Rutgers, but fortunately I've seen it on display at other meets. :applaud:

I chit chat with friends and caffeinate between races, but right before my race, I have to focus, fidget with my goggles, jump around, swing my arms around, and channel my aggression and bad ass sprinter self.

SwimStud
December 11th, 2007, 10:08 PM
As aparently the only person at the meet who missed seeing your clevage (sorry Muppet, I was distracted by seeing Stud in his Speedo!:banana:)... an argument can be made that there are worse things on display at a masters meet than the backside of a 20-something. I'm still having flashes of the sight of one of my own team mates in a tie-dye weiner bikiner :notworking:.

Should we even discuss the crazy lady in the purple fastskin? On second thought, let's not.

Haha did you see me flexing on teh block? I heard my name being called out from the bleachers and for fun, I popped a "front double biceps" as it's known in the trade... ;)

sunanfun@comcast.net
December 12th, 2007, 04:57 PM
I thought Masters Swimming was to be fun? When I finished swimming in college I retired. After 35 years of retirement I am swimming masters and having fun. Most of my attention is now focused on my wife and enjoying her company that I missed out on in college.

I still focus on what I am doing but each swim is new and different. I don't have a mental check list except to make sure my suit is tied or zipped up, my goggles are on tight.

I enjoy the racing, any event, any distance (except 200 fly). I have a good time in work outs and enjoy the social life that it adds.

At meets I enjoy meeting and talking to the other swimmers, but most of all being with my wife (married 37 yrs).

I guess at 58, swimming through college and coaching at the club, high school and college level, I just want to have fun.

Ron Koch

meldyck
December 13th, 2007, 07:02 AM
I get to the pool early and usually swim 1500-2000 very easy with NEVER a sprint in the warm up (sorry Paul Smith). Then, I'm done warming up in the water for that day. I do a lot of EZ walking and pacing the rest of the day to keep the leg muscles loose. Before the race I make sure I'm zipped, the goggles are on and the cap covers them and my bald head (sorry John Smith).

I like talking to people to keep my mind off the race. I find that too much concentration usually results in swimming the wrong race strategy which, for me, is what I've practiced for months. My body clock is infallible except when my brain re-sets it!

Best race I've ever swum I was talking to my blockmates right up to the horn and not even looking at the water.

I usually don't warm down, much to the dismay of any coach I've ever had - just back to the pacing...