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A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming

A little background info about me. In my younger days I was a runner but quit while in my mid 30's when it was no longer fun. I began swimming in 2000 to lose a few pounds and get in shape. I did not participate in age group or high school swimming and prior to taking up swimming as a 48 year old the only previous swimming experience I had was from Red Cross lessons and Boy Scouts.

  1. Thursday, 7/19/12

    by , July 19th, 2012 at 04:44 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM, Solo

    Warm up (800)
    400 choice, did 2x (100 swim/50 kick/50 drill)
    4 x 100/2:00 (25 drill 75 build swim)

    Sprint set (600)
    12 x 50/1:15
    #1 = 25 EZ 25 build to sprint finish
    #2 = 15m EZ 25 sprint 10m EZ
    #3 = 25 sprint 25 EZ
    was around 42-43 on all

    Main set: (1900)
    1 x 1000/30sr
    (with open water sighting each length)
    - I might have swam 1100 lost count and time when I stopped was 18:55

    Pace work
    Swam the following at 1:40/100 pace - all on 10 sr
    2 x 50, 2 x 100, 2 x 150, 2 x 100, 2 x 50


    Total: 3300 meters

    Updated July 23rd, 2012 at 06:55 PM by poolraat

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  2. Wednesday, 7/18/12

    by , July 18th, 2012 at 04:45 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM, Solo

    Warm up (600)
    2 x 300/20sr
    - #1 - drill/swim by 50's
    - #2 - kick/swim by 50's

    Pull w/buoy and catch paddles (900)
    3 x 300/5:20 - 3rd and 6th 50's are backstroke
    - average 5:00 on these

    Swim (1000)
    4 x 250/4:30, 3rd 50 back stroke
    - ave 4:15 on these

    Swim Free (600)
    4 x (50/55 @ 80%, 100/1:50 @ 70%)
    - around 45 on 50's, 1:35 on 100's

    Warm down
    100 easy - DAB, back, breast, free by 25's

    Total: 3200 meters

    Yesterday, I submitted my entry for the Cascade Lakes Open Water Festival at Elk Lake near Bend Oregon. There are 5 OW swims over 3 days, 3k on Friday evening, 500m & 1500m on Saturday and 5k & 1000m on Sunday. I entered all 5. Since I have to drive 8 hours each way to get there I might as well get my money's worth!
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  3. Tuesday, 7/17/12

    by , July 17th, 2012 at 11:37 AM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM, with swim buddy

    Warm up
    600 swim

    2 x 200 kick/15 sr
    - did 1st one w/board & snorkel, 2nd one on back

    1 x 200 back, smooth

    Main Set
    12 x 100 free pace
    - 1-3/2:00
    - 4-6/1:55
    - 7-9/1:50
    - 10-12/1:45
    - Averaged 1:35 for set, fastest at 1:33, slowest at 1:37

    Pull Set
    1 x 600 w/buoy only

    Total: 3000 meters
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  4. Monday, 7/16/12

    by , July 16th, 2012 at 07:47 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM, in the rain with swim buddy

    Warm up (800)
    400 choice alternated free & back by 100's
    8 x 50 - Odds = pull with paddles/1:00
    - Evens = kick using paddles as kick board/1:15

    Pull (1200)
    3 x 400/20 sr with snorkel & bouy
    - was around 6:30 on all 3

    Kick (400)
    8 x 50 Kick Choice/1:15 flutter kick on back

    Swim/Drills (300)
    1 x 300 as (100 swim 100 kick/swim 100 drill/swim) by 50's


    Total: 2700 meters
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  5. Saturday, 7/14/12

    by , July 14th, 2012 at 03:08 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    No swim today. Instead I did a 45 mile bike ride with a friend.
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  6. Friday, 7/13/12

    by , July 13th, 2012 at 04:25 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    Took yesterday as a rest day and did not swim.

    Rode 22 miles on bike this morning.

    SCM, Solo
    Warm up:
    500 various
    - did 100 free/100 back/100 kick/100 pull free/100 pull back

    Main Sets:
    3 x (4 x 50) @ :20 RI
    1 = kick
    2 = drill
    3 = scull
    4 = swim
    - did free, breast, back; free & breast w/snorkel

    8 x 50 kick to 10-12 meters + smooth free/1:10
    - did 10-12 SDK then swim

    4 x 100 backstroke @ 2:10
    50 EZ

    4 x 100 kick @ 2:00 w/fins - did 1-2 w/snorkel & board, 3-4 on back; dolphin and flutter
    50 EZ

    6 x 50 @ 1:10
    odds = free breathing every 5th stroke
    evens = smooth free

    50 EZ

    Total: 2750 meters
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  7. Wednesday, 7/11/12

    by , July 11th, 2012 at 04:31 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    I was going to ride last night after work but it's been so hot that I went out at 5:30 this morning while it was still cool and did 16 mi.

    Swam today during my lunch break. Still doing recovery and will do so the rest of the week.

    SCM, Solo
    Warm up:
    500 as 100 free/100 back/75 free/75 back/50 free/50 back/25 free/25 back

    Main:
    --everything @ :30 RI
    1 x 200 D-S-K-S
    1 x 200 IM drill
    2 x 100 kick
    4 x 50 smooth free

    2 x 200 free w/buoy paddles, & snorkel)
    2 x 100 back, work UWs
    4 x 50 kick w/fins UW to 15-20 m
    4 x 50 choice

    Total: 2300 meters

    Am starting to feel rested even though it's only been a few days since I got back from Nationals. But I will continue with the recovery swims this week before picking it back up next week. I plan to do at least 2 HIT workouts weekly with the remainder of my training being more endurance, distance type training to prepare for 2 - 1500m open water swims I will do in August.
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  8. Tuesday, 7/10/12

    by , July 10th, 2012 at 06:44 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM with swim buddy

    Recovery Day

    After Nationals I will take it easy for a few days then gradually ramp it up again.

    Took yesterday off and did real easy swim today.

    100 easy free
    200 moderate pace as 75 free/25 back
    300 like above
    400 as 75 back/25 free
    300 pull with paddles, buoy and snorkel
    200 kick, alternating free & dolphin
    100 easy free & back

    Total: 1600 meters
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  9. 2012 Summer Nationals

    by , July 9th, 2012 at 09:30 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    Got home from Omaha this morning and I am exhausted! As soon as I was unpacked I took a nap. Just now starting to feel human again so thought I should update this.

    My son went with me and competed in the 18-24 age group. He did very well with 2 - 2nd place, 2 - 4th place, and a 10th place finishes. It was fun having him there with me and he seemed to even enjoy hanging with dad and all his old friends.

    I had a very good meet and met my expectations in all my swims and even approached my lifetime bests in a few of them. We arrived late Thursday afternoon and was able to get to the pool for a short swim in the warmup pool. It was awesome to see an entire 8 lane 50 meter pool with a 6 lane 25 yard(?) pool adjacent to it just for warmups. And 2 sprint lanes with blocks available the entire time. After a short warmup of 500 or 600 meters we left and went to dinner with Fortress. Was great to see her again.

    Friday:
    50 Freestyle - 31.07: This was a good swim even though I am really slow off the blocks (reaction time was .89). I wanted to swim this taking only 2 breaths but had to sneak in a third breath at about 10m to go. The swim felt good and strong and I didn't seem to drop off too much on my arm speed at the end. Ended up 13th in my age group. I've only done LCM Summer Nationals twice previously and by comparison, I went 30.60 in 2008 Summer Nationals and 30.00 in 2009.

    Saturday:
    100 Freestyle - 1:10.56 (34.05-36.51): another good swim and my start was a little better (r=.82). I won my heat which was exciting. Ended up 14th in my age group.
    I went 1:08.11 in 2008 Summer Nationals and 1:11.19 in 2009.

    50 Backstroke - 36.60: Great start (r = 0.67) and I went 12 SDK to about 12m before breakout. I kept good kick and fast arm speed throughout the swim. Was off just a bit at the finish and had a short glide before touching. Was 10th in my age group.
    I went 37.14 in 2008 Summer Nationals and 36.57 in 2009.

    Sunday:
    100 Backstroke - 1:23.31 (40.75-42.56): Another great start (r = .67) and felt strong through out the swim. This one hurt a bit though and I really had to focus to not let my kick and arm speed drop off in the final 25. Finished 9th in this event.
    I went 1:22.55 in 2008 Summer Nationals and 1:23.28 in 2009.

    50 Butterfly - 34.81: Start was better than the free races (r=.81) and after 8SDK I brokout and had a good swim. I really died at the end though. My son said I should have taken my 1st breath earlier in the race which might have helped. I was breathing every 5 strokes early then went to every 3 in the final 15+20 m. I swam faster in May for this event but I'm still pleased with it. I haven't spent a lot of time practicing fly and so not disappointed at all. I placed 8th in this event.
    I went 33.04 in 2008 Summer Nationals and 35.52 in 2009.

    All in all a very good meet and I'm pleased that I'm still swimming times close to what I did 4 years ago. I had a lot of fun and was great to see old friends and make some new ones. Now I'm going to take it easier the remainder of the summer, do more biking and maybe a few open water swims. There are also 2 aquabike events in Idaho later this month and August and I might try to do one or both.
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  10. Good bye Omaha

    by , July 9th, 2012 at 06:50 AM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    I'm sitting in the airport waiting to board the flight to SLC. Once there it will be another 3-1/2 hours to Elko. Once home I will post recap of the entire meet. It went well I swam some good times and had a lot of fun!
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  11. Wednesday, 7/4/12

    by , July 4th, 2012 at 07:19 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    Slept in this morning, took my time getting ready and going to the pool, and did final taper workout before going to Omaha.

    SCM, Solo

    300 choice
    100 Kick
    4 x 50/1:15 - 12.5 strong/25 cruise/12.5 strong - odds free, evens back

    4 x 25/45 - odds easy speed fly w/1 breath, evens easy free
    50 EZ
    1 x 50 back burst + cruise @ 1:30
    50 EZ
    1 x 50 free burst + cruise @ 1:30


    200 EZ

    Total: 1100 meters
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  12. Tuesday, 7/3/12

    by , July 3rd, 2012 at 11:24 AM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM, Solo

    3 more days!!!

    300 swim back and free
    100 kick on back w/6-8 SDK off walls
    4 x 50/1:15 build, odds back, evens free

    4 x 25/45 burst then cruise
    100 easy


    4 x 25/45 free or fly w/1 breath

    300 swim easy free to cool down

    Total: 1200 meters
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  13. Blowing bubbles and working on my tan!

    by , July 2nd, 2012 at 04:29 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    Monday, 7/2/12
    SCM, Solo

    I didn't use pace clock so I didn't get any times and just rested as needed between swims.

    300 Swim back & free
    200 kick on back in streamline alternating flutter and dolphin by 25's
    4 x 50 build, alternating free & back
    8 x 25 easy speed, mix of fly-back-free
    300 easy free & back

    Felt tired and tight and the soreness from the surveying on Friday is still there although it's is not as bad as yesterday.
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  14. Blowing the Taper! $@&%@*$#&*!!

    by , July 2nd, 2012 at 01:20 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    Friday 6/29/12
    Sometimes no matter what you try to do to be completely rested, real life has a way in interfering with your plans. I had planned Friday as a rest day, but what I hadn't planned on was having to spend half the day on a survey crew in the hot sun staking a parking lot for a paving job. So now because of the constant walking, kneeling, squatting, and swinging a 2# hammer I'm a bit sore. I hope the soreness passes and I can recover sufficiently before Friday that there wasn't too much of an adverse impact. But I now have the attitude that no matter what I will just have fun and take what happens without any expectations.

    Was in Boise ID for the weekend to get a massage and hang out with my coach.

    Saturday
    Warmup
    300 swim back & free
    200 kick
    2 x 50 build
    3 x 50 off blocks with breakout and 3-4 fast strokes then easy; 2 backstroke & 1 fly

    750 easy back and free

    Total: 1500 yards

    Sunday: Massage and a short walk with coach and her dog. No swim.
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  15. Thursday, 6/28/12

    by , June 28th, 2012 at 11:50 AM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM, Solo

    Another one of Leslie's HIT Taper workouts today. I'm starting to feel pretty good. Still a little tiredness in the legs but soreness is almost completely gone. I'll take a rest day tomorrow then will swim through the weekend, going to go to Boise and do a few with my coach on deck.

    400 choice - back & free

    10 x 50 mix drill & Kick / 1:30
    -- did 2 kick w/board, 2 kick on back, 2 ea. fly-back-free drills

    6 x 50 burst + cruise @ 2:00
    -- 2 each, fly-back-free, burst to about 20m, cruise through turn and back
    100 EZ

    6 x 50
    odds = 25 up tempo + 25 smooth
    evens = EZ
    -- on odds, 1 each, fly-back-free, EZ free on evens

    100 EZ

    Total: 1700 meters
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  16. Wednesday, 6/27/12

    by , June 27th, 2012 at 12:23 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    9 days to Master's LCM Nationals
    I felt a lot better today. Don't feel as tired and soreness in arms, lats and legs is starting to go away.

    SCM, Solo

    Meet Warm Up
    300 choice
    200 kick on back alternating dolphin and flutter by 25's
    6 x 50/1:10 build, odds free, evens back
    6 x 25 burst + cruise
    50 easy

    Main Set:
    2 x 25 1 arm fly drill to work on kick timing
    2 (25 fly + 75 EZ free)
    1st 25 = build to fast w/good finish
    2nd 25 = fast @ 90% w/good finish
    - -did both 25's fly with the main focus being breathing pattern (1 in 4-5 strokes) and kick timing
    100 EZ

    12 x 25/45
    Odds = build tempo - did 2 fly, 2 back, 2 free
    Evens = EZ free

    Warm down
    2 x 50 drill/20sr fist swim, 1 free and 1 back
    100 ez

    Total: 1850 meters




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  17. Tuesday, 6/26/12

    by , June 26th, 2012 at 06:44 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    I felt like crap in the water this morning. And I don't know what's happened to my fly but my timing is totally off, to the point that my kick is non-existant! So I spent some 25's just slowing it down and trying to get the arms and legs back in synch.

    And I just feel slow and sluggish in back and free too. I guess this is normal for this point in taper but it's still frustrating.

    I changed and shortened the workout that my coach sent this morning to what I felt like I needed.


    400 choice as 100 free/100 back/100 free/100 kick
    6 x 25 shooters @ :20 RI took more rest - with fins, alternated on belly and on back
    4 x 25 no breath free @ :20 RI - just did 4 and swam with the breathing pattern I will use in the 50 free in the meet, one every 8-10 strokes
    4 x 25 scull

    3 x (4 x 25) @ 1:00
    fly on 1st round, focused on timing and kick instead of speed
    back on 2nd round, free on 3rd round
    1st 25 = burst + cruise
    2nd 25 = burst + cruise
    3rd 25 = EZ
    4th 25 = EZ speed @ 80%
    50 EZ between each round

    200 EZ free

    100 EZ back

    Total: 1500 meters
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  18. Monday, 6/25/12

    by , June 25th, 2012 at 06:30 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCM, Solo
    11 Days until Nationals!

    Felt a bit tired and sore when I got up this morning but after a few hundred meters of swimming, I felt pretty good.

    Instructions from my coach sent with this morning's workout!

    #1: Watch Olympic Trials!
    #2: Sleep a lot and avoid stairs!
    #3: And swim at what your body needs that day


    Warm up
    500 free & back ladder
    -- (100 free/100 back/75 free/75 back/50 free/50 back/25 free/25 back
    4 x 50 with paddles/1:15 (25 pull - 25 kick)
    -- Did backstroke with catch paddles

    4 x (25 restricted breathing + 25 EZ)/30sr
    -- did fly with focus on breathing no more than 1 time every 4-5 strokes
    50 easy

    4 x 50 burst + cruise/1:15
    -- alternated free & back
    50 easy

    4 x (25 w/fins AFAP +25 EZ)/1:30
    -- fly-free-back-free
    50 easy

    4 x (25 smooth + 25 up tempo ...work on fast good finish)/1:30
    -- alternated free & back
    50 EZ

    4 (25 distance per kick UW w/fins + 25 EZ)1:30


    200 EZ Warm down

    Total: 2100 meters
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  19. Racing the Kids, Day 2

    by , June 24th, 2012 at 07:54 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    Elko High Altitude Invitational, Day Two. SCM

    Had some really good swims today! Since I'm tired and just a week into taper, I'm hoping that will mean I have some great swims in Omaha!

    Did a warmup of about 1100 yards (warmup pool is SCY)

    50 Free: :30.56 - This was a very good swim! Great start and breakout, good turn and felt great the entire way!

    100 Back: 1:19.65 - Another good swim! Split mid 39 - low 40! Felt strong throughout. The only comment my friend had was that I need to get my hand deeper on entry so I get an earlier catch and he thought I was sliding a bit at the bottom end of my stroke. Something to focus on over the next few weeks.

    With warmups and warmdowns and races I probably did around 1500 yards and 150 meters.
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  20. Racing the Kids....

    by , June 24th, 2012 at 09:28 AM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    ...and getting my kicked!

    Elko High Altitude Invitational, Day one. SCM

    With Nationals 2 weeks away I thought it would be fun to swim a few races just to get into a racing mindset so when I found out our local USAS team had also sanctioned their invitational for masters I entered a few races.

    Saturday - Did a warmup of about 800 yards (warmup pool is SCY)

    100 Free: 1:09.28 - I was very pleased with this swim! My splits were 33.6-35.7 which could be tightened up a bit but still not bad. It was a fun race too as I was neck and neck with the kid in the next lane the entire way. He got me by about half a second. Two more weeks of rest and taper should make this a little faster.

    50 Fly: 35.75 - UGH! This one was terrible! I swam this as a time trial since it was not offered as a part of the meet program. I made a lot of mistakes in this swim. Here are the comments from a friend that coaches one of the teams that was there:
    ---I stayed under water too long so had lost all my momentum from the dive by the time I broke out.
    ---Breathing too much!
    ---glide into turn and finish.
    Also I just couldn't get into rhythm. Never felt like my kick and arms were in synch.

    With warmups and warmdowns and races I probably did around 1900 yards and 150 meters.

    Sunday (today) I swim 50 free and 100 back.

    Updated June 24th, 2012 at 09:37 AM by poolraat

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