Meet / OW event plans and results from U.S. Masters Swmming events in this category.
I swam in my 3rd meet on Saturday, the Quicksilver Spring into Summer Meet. I guessed that there wouldn't be a huge turnout because the Pacific Masters Short Course Championships was just couple of weeks ago and Nationals are this week, so I thought I should space out my events and only ended up entering four: the 500, 100, and 50 free, and the 100 IM.
I haven't swum the 500 since high school so I wasn't sure about a seed time. I can do 5 x 100 @ 1:20 on a really good day so I knew I could go 6:20, I figured I could probably go a 6:20, and hoped I could go a 6:15 - so I entered with a 6:20. Not at all sure how to pace myself, but certain that I didn't want to go out fast and die, I decided to try to swim the race as two 200s at the same pace and a 100 at a faster pace. I ended up with a 6:16.94. I don't know my splits because the meet didn't have pads, but a coach who was timing another guy in my heat said that I was holding "37 high" per 50 throughout the middle of the race so I think I was fairly consistent. Unfortunately I had a lot left at the end, I felt like I could have kept going for another 100 or more, but next time I will know. All in all, I was happy with the race.
The 100 free was next and as soon as I dove in I realized that I should have done a longer warm down after the 500, I was stiff and couldn't get my pace up. I went a 1:01.41, considerably slower than the 1:00.42 I went a couple of weeks ago. Oh well, another lesson learned.
Next up was the 100 IM. I accidentally scratched this race in the meet a couple of weeks ago so I also didn't have an actual time for my seed, so I picked 1:13 out of the air. My fly is awful (seriously) but I managed a 25, didn't smack my head on the back to breast turn, and felt OK in the breast and free, and ended up with a 1:10.99. Nothing to write home about, but good enough for my level of training.
The 50 free was my last event. I am not a sprinter so I didn't have any expectations and was pleased with my 27.03, a nice drop from the 28.20 I swam went in my first Masters meet.
I swam in my second master's meet this weekend, the Pacific Masters Short Course Championships. My only event on Friday was the 200 free, which I was looking forward to because I felt that I should be able to go faster than the 2:16.11 I went in my first meet a few weeks ago. The meet started at 1:00 so I went at about 2:00pm to make sure I didn't miss my friend Susan swim the 1650. Even though they swam two heats simultaneously, it was hours before she swam, another hour or so before the rest of the more than 110 1650s finished, and then several hours more before the 200. I was chilled and my feet were freezing by then so I got in to warm up again about a half hour before the race, and my feet immediately cramped up. I swam an easy 500 and stretched out, and felt fairly good on the blocks but 50 yards into the race both of my calves cramped and then both of my feet cramped as well . Luckily I didn't have to stop the race, and my 2:16.6 wasn't a lot worse than the other week, but it was a disappointing race.
I usually sleep through anything but I slept terribly Friday night, waking up every hour from 1:00am on. I was really looking forward to the 500 so maybe it was excitement, maybe nerves, who knows.
Never-the-less, I got up eagerly and got to the pool early so I would have time for a long warm up before the pool got crowded. The weather forecast called for a 80% chance of rain, but the sky looked hopeful as I got in. A half hour later I felt rain drops, and by the time I finished warming up and showered, it had turned into a downpour:
After standing in the wind for the first few heats of the women's 500 (I couldn't find anywhere to sit and stay dry), I was cold and my feet were cramping up so I decided the prospects of me having a good race were slim to none and I scratched and went home to warm up and take a nap. I went back to swim the 100 IM just after noon, but I misjudged how long events would take and my heat was swimming as I walked in
There was no rain in the Sunday forecast, and it turned out to be a beautiful day:
What a difference a day can make!
My first event was the 100 free. My best time from a push is about 1:08, and I went out in a 1:05 in the 200, so I was hoping to break a minute. I went a 1:00.42 so didn't quite make it, but I feel like I swam a reasonable race (29.26, 31.16) and I have lots to learn (eg. my start is awful) so I am happy with it.
My next race was the 50 breast. I didn't have much time because it was the next event, so I swam 300-400 yards in the diving well and went to my lane to wait. You would think that I might have learned something after the 200 on Friday night, but I stood around in my bare feet wrapped in a wet towel as I waited for my heat and - quelle surprise - got a big cramp in my calf as soon as I dove in. I wasn't thrilled with my 36.54, but on the other hand I had never raced a 50 breast because I didn't start swimming until high school so technically it was a PR .
I chatted with Allen Stark in the shower and when he told me that he woke his parka and boots until the second he climbed onto the blocks, I thought "oh, duh" and realized again that I really do have a lot to learn. He said that he was going to warm down and then wouldn't get back in before the 100 breast because he didn't want to get cold, so I figured I should try the same. I made myself sit still instead of walking around for the couple of hours, and was warm and relaxed for the race.
I was hoping to go under 1:20 (my time from a few weeks ago), so I was really pleased that I did not cramp and that I saw 1:18.54 on the board when I finished! I tried to stay long and relaxed for the first 50 to hopefully have enough left for a strong second 50, and I am happy with my splits - 37.84, 40.70.
Overall it was a good meet, I was happy with some of my swims and I learned a few things. I can't wait for the next one!
I swam in my first masters meet today, the Rinconada Masters Spring Short Course Meet. I swam the "novice" 50 free (first timers only), the 200 free, and the 100 breast. The weather was awful, low 50s and quite windy, but at least the rain that was threatening to fall all day stayed away.
My last meet was in 1980 and I have only been swimming regularly for 4 months, so I wasn't sure what to use for my entry times. I thought about using the times I hoped to do - :29, 2:20, and 1:25, but in the end I decided to use times that I have actually done in workout - :32, 2:32, and 1:40. This was probably a mistake.
My first race was the 50. I was never a sprinter and wouldn't have entered this except I figured I shouldn't waste my one and only opportunity to race as a novice. I went a :28.2. My start was really deep (I also hadn't done a start from a block since 1980), my turnover felt slow, and I felt like I could have done another 50, so while I was happy with the time I am sure I can go faster.
I was happy to have the slowest seed in my heat for the 200 because the fastest seeds were about what I hoped to go. I tried to stretch out and relax on the first 100, it felt great and I saw 1:05 coming off the wall. I tried much harder on the second 100 and I think I forgot about relaxing. I went a 2:16.1, again about 5 seconds ahead of second place. I was happy with the time because it was faster than I hoped to go, but I think I can go faster with more focus on my technique.
My plan to use my best workout times probably hurt me the most in the 100 breast. One other person had seed time of 1:40, he ended up the slowest seed in the second heat and I ended up the fastest seed in the first heat. I went a 1:20.5 and was about 25 seconds ahead of second place. I would have won the second head with that time, but it would have been a close race so maybe I would have gone faster. I have done very little breaststroke in workout so far, and my technique is straight out of the 70s, so I think I can go faster with some practice.
All in all I am really happy with the meet. I had a lot of fun and my times were better than I hoped, and I think I can do better the next time I swim. In hindsight I should have used faster seed times and entered more events. Next time I will know ;-)