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  1. Monday, May 21

    by , May 21st, 2012 at 03:10 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up:

    600 various
    8 x 25 shooters
    8 x 50 fly drills @ :15 RI
    odds = caterpillar
    evens = single arm
    50 EZ

    Speed/Ultra Short Distance Sets:

    1 x 75 fast fly w/fins @ 95%
    -- 38 mid
    225 EZ

    1 x 75 fast back w/fins @ 95%
    -- 37 flat
    225 EZ

    10 x 25
    12.5 burst dolphin kick w/board, cruise to wall, :20 RI
    no masters minute

    10 x 25
    15 m burst dolphin kick w/board, cruise to wall, :25 rest
    100 EZ

    10 x 25
    15 m burst, cruise to wall, :30 rest
    odds = back shooter
    evens = fast hands breast
    100 EZ

    1 x 50 AFAP back w/fins
    -- 23 low
    -- tired
    200 EZ

    Total: 3050


    The body is predictably sore from the weekend's mega yoga and drylands. I was pretty tired by the third set of ultra short distance reps. My heart rate was elevated during all 30. I'd now like to wrap my body from head to toe in compression garments.

    I did hear from someone running the Cleveland meet who assured me they would submit times to USMS, take split requests, etc. I'm still not sure which meet to attend. It's possible the Cleveland meet may be so small that it only runs a couple hours each day. All things considered, getting sufficient rest is the most important factor if I'm going to bother to taper & travel. So feeling indecisive still, but leaning toward Omaha.
  2. Friday, April 13

    by , April 13th, 2012 at 05:47 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    1000 EZ
    More hot tubing than swimming

    Feed Jimby

    Stretching and rehab on GMU pool deck with SwimmieAvsFan

    Big hugs with Chowmi!!!!

    Preparing to count for crazy distance swimmers.

    Mega chatting
  3. Sat., March 3

    by , March 3rd, 2012 at 04:32 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    60 minutes of stretching and RC/scapular exercises.

    Gull (who is recovering rhomboid tendonitis) gave me these rhomboid stretches: The middle of the back can be a hard spot to stretch. I especially like the doorway stretch.

    Suit(s) Report:

    Tried on my Arena X-Glide. Like it very much. It's similar to the LZR Elite. Slightly different material. I wish the top half were slightly smaller. Not sure if I should keep it or not ... My LZR Elite seems to fit better on top, though it is not as compressing in the legs (probably all stretched out). Edit: I'm going to send back the Arena suit for the next size down. In my (expert haha ) view, it should have taken longer to get on even with Glide. Thanks to Teen Fort (who will only wear B70), I have also gotten my hands on a used FS3. I managed to wedge my body into it without undue trouble. So I may give that suit a whirl tomorrow and see it it is deserving of the recent bad press. Tt is certainly more compressing in the legs than the LZR Elite and has a very different feel.

    Still planning on 50 breast/50 fly/50 back tomorrow.

    Updated March 3rd, 2012 at 05:15 PM by The Fortress

  4. Sunday, Feb. 26

    by , February 26th, 2012 at 05:49 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Rehab exercises, 40 minutes

    Stretching/Foam Roller, 40 minutes


    After feeling pretty rough last Friday, I resolved to take the weekend off. The lack of a recovery week since Dec., combined with a lot of HIT workouts, probably caused some accumulated fatigue. I was also worried I might be coming down with a cold, but after marathon sleep last night, feel better.

    I did sign myself up for the Warrenton meet next Sunday.

    And I'm very proud of my Lil Fort who took a minute off her PR and ran a 21:40 5K today. She seems like a natural runner.

    Fort Son's coach told him to take 7-10 days off rowing/lifting to try to speed his mono recovery. He's hoping to feel better by his training trip over spring break.
  5. Monday, Feb. 20

    by , February 20th, 2012 at 05:08 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up:

    600 various
    8 x 25 shooters w/fins @ :35
    8 x 25 free w/paddles, no breath @ :35
    5 x 50 double torque drill w/paddles @ 1:15
    50 EZ

    Speed Sets:

    8 x 25 burst to 15 m + cruise @ 1:00
    -- 4 speed drills, 4 dolphin
    50 EZ

    Then I did a modified version of a speed set from workout #4 in the HIT forum: [ame=""]U.S. Masters Swimming Discussion Forums[/ame]

    4 x (5 x 50 w/fins) @ 1:30
    -- 100 EZ between each round

    1-5: free
    5/7/9 strokes fast, fast 25 (10), fast 25 (10)
    6-10: dolphin kick on back
    8/10/12 kicks fast, fast 25 (9 flat), fast 25 (8 high)
    11-15: breast
    4/5/6 strokes fast, fast 25 (13 high), fast 25 (13 high)
    16-20: dolphin kick on belly
    10/12/14 kicks fast, fast 25 (9 high), fast 25 (9 high)

    8 x 25 w/parachute @ 1:15
    1-4: free w/paddles & chute
    5-8: flutter kick w/board & chute -- these were ridiculously hard
    100 EZ

    Total: 3250

    Stretching & Rehab Exercises, 45 minutes


    Couldn't get to yoga today with it being a school holiday, but did get this speed workout in. It's very quiet in the house with Teen Fort in Boston today. Despite the fact that it's sunny and 50 there, highly unusual for Feb., she thinks it's "cold and ugly." She likely just knows that I love Boston, so has decided to take the opposite view. On a happier note, Mr. Fort has completely dropped the notion of an early April vacation. His training partner over dinner agreed with me that it was unworkable and unfair. Heehee.
  6. Sunday, Feb. 5

    by , February 5th, 2012 at 08:53 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    I took yesterday off as usual. But I did do 40 minutes of RC, elbow and scapular exercises, with an emphasis on the scapular area. Fun ... NOT!

    Today I hit the gym and did:

    Another 30 minutes of RC, elbow, scapular exercises
    Total ab machine, 130 x 4 x 15
    Explosive leg press, 270 x 4 x 10
    Leg extensions, 120 x 4 x 6
    Resisted lunges, 60 x 2 x 15 left/right, 15 front
    Leg abductors, 130 x 3 x 8
    Captains chair, 2 x 25
    Altitude drops, 10
    Knee tuck jumps, 10
    Lateral bunny hops over bench, 20

    Bike, 15 minutes
    Stretching, 15-20 minutes


    Didn't swim this weekend, which is fine. The pools were mostly closed anyway for a USAS meet and HS Regionals. The latter was fun to watch with almost every event won in an AAA time at finals. Sophomore star Janet Hu went a 53.7 100 back and 49.5 100 free. Sick fast.

    The only disappointing part of the meet was that the free anchor of Teen Fort's medley relay loafed to save herself for the next event. I was shocked and really pissed off; I've not seen anything that flagrant at a champs meet where team points matter. Two other girls were also in the next event, one in an earlier heat, and they swam fast. Her mother apparently told her to loaf. Wtf. I was also ticked because Teen Fort took some time off rowing and gave up going to the Mid Atlantic Erg Sprints to be with her team and swim at this meet. Her good deed was rewarded in part with an outright selfish and ethically dubious act. At least the coaches were displeased and are going to take some action. Personally, I think they should pull the brat out of the event she loafed the relay for. But I doubt that will happen.

    Go Patriots!
  7. Thursday, Nov. 7

    by , November 17th, 2011 at 07:24 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    I did an even shorter workout than Speedo today. 0 yardage. My day was booked solid and I am still not 100%. So I figured a rest day wouldn't hurt, and might set up a good speed workout tomorrow.

    In other news, I've been asking around and doing some research to see if there are any personal trainers/strength coaches I might trust in the area. I've been pretty happy (and lucky) having Q and Jazz giving me many pointers over the years and learning OMO. But I'm still curious. The best person in my immediate area seems to be a guy named Justin Case who owns Underground Athlete. I may try a couple sessions after Xmas to see what I think.

    I'm also not that thrilled with my current massage therapist. I might try a new place soon that caters to endurance athletes: Take note Speedo, this is very close to you. Will call tomorrow to see if I can book an appt the day after the LC meet.

    I was also offered (and accepted) a position as one of the USMS on line coaches. (Scott Bay of BluFrog suggested it.) They are broadening the types of workout focus next year. My theme is "high intensity." Any good suggestions for a title for my sub-forum?

    Oh, I can't get my USMS blue seventy code to work. Anyone else have any luck?

    Updated November 17th, 2011 at 08:48 PM by The Fortress

  8. Speed Bump, Oct. 24

    by , October 24th, 2011 at 12:30 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    The path to swim meets is never easy ...

    Started feeling sick on Friday night (fever, chills, stuffy, queasy) and was up most of the night. Was at The Couch the rest of the weekend. With Mr. Fort gone on Saturday, it was somewhat tortuous getting through all the kid things. I am at least somewhat ambulatory today, though still really not well at all. I may attempt a short slow swim in the pool just to keep feel, and then back to the couch. I used to fight these things more, but I found complete rest helps me recover more quickly. Not the best timing with the meet this weekend. But hopefully, I will only miss a few practices and at least feel better by the weekend. Just hope I can at least get a few fast 25s in before then.

    Had my interview with Swimming World for the Lane Leader column today. Hope I wasn't too addled. Lane Leader is a semi-regular column featuring masters swimmers. It should come out in the December issue.

    Updated October 24th, 2011 at 12:57 PM by The Fortress

  9. Thursday, Oct. 20

    by , October 20th, 2011 at 04:19 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    RC exercises, 20-25 minutes

    Stretching/Yoga, 20-25 minutes


    Last night, I started feeling some pain in the front of my right shoulder again. Same place as last August. Grr, bad timing. Icing! I decided to take a rest day and save the sprinting for later.

    Also have a bit of a sore neck from erging, but that will improve with rest. Rich Abrahams told me that one of his favorite erg workouts is 10 x 500 with 1:00 rest. His best 500 time is 1:38, which is very fast.

    Speaking of rowing, Mr. Fort is leaving tomorrow for the Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston. Fort Son is taking the bus down with other frosh rowers to watch his team. (Freshman don't row in this event.) Mr. Fort has some nagging intercostal pain. It's always something in masters ...

    In other news, Swimming World Magazine sent an email to my team trying to locate me for a Lane Leader article in the mag. Cool.

    If you're on FB, here's some exercises that Brooke Bennett is doing with her strength coach:

    Updated October 20th, 2011 at 07:35 PM by The Fortress

  10. Friday, June 17

    by , June 17th, 2011 at 08:08 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    TRX rows, 25
    TRX face pulls, 20
    TRX sprinter starts, 20
    TRX chest press, 2 x 15
    TRX fly, 2 x 15
    TRX moving plank, 2 x 15
    Knee tuck jumps, 10
    Overhead med ball slams, 2 x 15

    Bike, 20 minutes



    Squeezed this little workout in in an extremely hectic day. Made it to Fort Sons graduation -- not too many tears. And my flight to London is on time. Hope the connection to Barclona is too. We're cutting it very tight, which is slightly nerve wracking.

    Hoping the wifi works on this trip!

  11. Retry, Swim w/my Ilk, Tuesday, June 7

    by , June 7th, 2011 at 09:00 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Swim/LCM @ Rockville:

    Warm up:

    600 various

    10 x 50
    odds = 25 drill + 25 swim
    evens = 25 kick + 25 swim

    Main Sets:
    -- used fins

    10 x 50 back kick
    odds = fast SDK to 25 + 25 easy kick
    evens = easy SDK to 25 + 25 fast kick

    4 x through tempo swim:
    2 x 50 back
    1 x 100 back

    100 EZ

    2 x (fast 50 fly + easy 50)
    1 x (50 fly @ 100 pace & 100 breathing + 50 EZ

    Total: 2800 m



    Journeyed to MD again today. This time to the outdoor LCM pool in Rockville MD (only 25 minutes). Met up with Julie Roddin and Susan Williams. Julie brought me Luna bars. Julie swam with Susan and I during warm up, and then wisely ditched us for her Bay buddies who seem like they can swim forever. I swam the main sets with Susan who, as many may know, has mad skillz at back and SDK. Wow, pretty cool swimming with someone my own kind and my own speed! Susan loves the alpha fins. I keep forgetting that I own these and should probably try them for swimming (not kicking). There was no pace clock. Susan and I took a fair bit of rest on the main sets. I suck at long course, so I'm feeling pretty tired after that.

    I pulled my blog a couple days ago after all the nastiness and moral superiority (gah) on the sandbag thread. I personally don't care whether swimmers manipulate their seed times for any reason. And I do love our fiesty forum with a lot of debate & trash talking. But I don't need to be called an immoral cheater by the likes of Stillwater, et al. And having spoken to more women on FB, they feel the same way I do about mixed gender meets. What a shocker! Friends persuaded me to take my blog (always bereft of that crap) off invisible. Hopefully, everyone can stick to making fun of my workouts or my fins or my height or whatever else you can think of!
  12. Thursday, May 12

    by , May 12th, 2011 at 11:06 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    RC work
    standing barbell shoulder press, 50 x 5 x 5
    -- Never done this before. They got easier as I went along. Can this be an alternative to bench pressing in the "push" category?
    seated row negatives, 80 x 3 x 8
    deadlift singles, 145 x 6
    tricep press, 50 x 2 x 8
    back extensions, 25 x 1 x 15
    --- Hamstrings were sore from bikram and this exercise bothered them.
    chin ups, 3 x 4
    -- Well, I can tell I haven't done these in half a century.
    box jumps, 10
    altitude drops, 10
    knee tuck jumps, 2 x 10

    20 minutes foam roller, yoga & stretching

    Swim/LCM @ GMU:

    Warm up:

    200 S-K-D-K-D

    Main Sets:

    2 x 100 free
    50 tricep finish drill + 50 overkick free

    4 x 200 kick w/fins @ 4:00
    50 flutter kick w/board
    50 fast dolphin kick on back
    50 backstroke kick
    50 flutter kick w/board
    -- Went 2:36, 2:34, 2:32, 2:32, not bad for LC.

    100 EZ

    9 x 100 @ 2:00
    3 x 100 25 fast fly + 75 easy free
    3 x 100 25 fast back + 75 easy free
    3 x 100 25 fast breast + 75 easy free
    -- On the 75 free, I did a 25 back kick after the sprint so I could catch my breath and then a 50 free.
    --- Speedo and I agreed that "easy free" doesn't seem so easy in LC.

    50 fast stroke from a dive
    -- I went fly with fins from a push. The coach must have given me a serious roll start b/c I saw 28 on the clock. I did, however, cheat and stay under for about 20 meters after the push.

    50 EZ

    6 x 100 pull @ 1:35, 2nd & 5th ones fast
    -- I did them all mod speed, 3 pull & 3 kick -- was all tuckered out.

    50 EZ (instead of 200)

    Total: 3700 m



    Enjoyed the workout. Didn't feel as much like I was swimming in open water during the warm up and felt pretty strong until the last 6 x 100 set.

    The Charmer was extra charming tonight. He is a "purist" and believes in the "integrity of the set" (even though he won't use equipment when it's assigned). His "times" are about "what is on the GMU record board," his brother is going to beat Kirk Nelson in some OW swim with salmon in the name, and he is hoping to swim his college times (really?) and loves to talk about them. At some point, fortunately, I had the opportunity to fill him in a tad on Speedo's speed and defend our one team breaststroker. Despite swimming in the same lane, he hasn't even asked what my name is. Sheesh!

    Updated May 13th, 2011 at 11:20 AM by The Fortress

  13. Tuesday, April 19

    by , April 19th, 2011 at 08:38 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Had a fabulous weekend in Boston! The city was packed with runners and the atmosphere was great. All the first timers, including Mr. Fort, couldn't believe the level of crowd support. There were crowds cheering every inch of the way. It was also a beautiful day for running and spectating (unlike today).

    Mr. Fort was hoping to go a 3:30, but ended up at 3:40. I thought 3:30 was optimistic given that he'd hardy run in 3 weeks. But he was on pace until the Newton Hills. Oddly, he had no hamstring issues -- it was his quads that betrayed him after the long downhills. His training partner completely blew up on mile 18. In fact, I didn't hear very many people that were happy with their times. Still, he was happy to finish, and very happy that he and Lil Fort got to run the 5K on Sunday. He has to now re-evaluate whether he wants to run another marathon to get a BQ for next year (maybe Lehigh in Sept.) or continue to focus on biking as he did most of last year.

    As I predicted, I didn't swim for 3 days. I estimate that I got about 10 miles of walking in though, so that was probably good for the legs. I sat in the whirlpool for a long time on Sunday, but only did about 10 laps in the hotel pool -- too crowded. Unfortunately, I got very little sleep and am now extremely tired. I can't sleep in hotels at all.

    I'm also having some second thoughts about Canadian Nationals. May-June is going to be a very busy time (regattas, soccer, trip to Dartmouth, summer swim starting, mom visiting, graduation), not a good time for a trip. And I just realized today, doh, that the meet is the same weekend as the Stotesbury Regatta in Philly where both my kids will be rowing. On the the other hand, if I don't go, I likely will not have a masters meet until late August. The other option is to re-join USAS and do either the local VA or MD LC State Champs the end of May or beginning of June. I'll have to mull it over. Maybe after a couple days sleep, I'll be dying to go.

    I received my Speedo silicone low profile nose clips in the mail. They are absolute crap too -- way too big. I need to return those and the TYR clips. My regular Speedo competition nose clip is sold out almost everywhere, but I finally found a site that had them in stock and ordered 8.

    Updated April 19th, 2011 at 09:35 PM by The Fortress

  14. CZ: No Easy Speed

    by , April 17th, 2011 at 02:40 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    50 free split, 25.9:

    Was a bit sluggish in warm up, as I had been all week. Felt like I was spinning my wheels a bit on this race. At first I was disappointed with my time. However, upon reflection, it's not too bad for several reasons. First, the starter held us forever and I got off the blocks extremely slowly for me. I think this likely cost me a couple tenths. Second, I swam a 25.7 last year in a kneeskin with a good start and I felt more rested then. I also swam a 26.2 in Richmond in a B70 on short rest. Since I have worked so little on free lately, don't think I can expect much more. I really need to do some fast 50 frees before Canadian Nats.

    50 back split on relay, 28.2

    I was held a REALLY long time on the start and got off slowly. Coach said I was perilously close to the 15 meter mark. Both breakouts were not super smooth and my legs felt tired. Jim video'd the race and my turnover slowed down the last 7-8 yards. At first when I touched, I thought my time was 28.8, and was not very happy. Later I saw it was 28.2, and that's pretty good on short rest with the technical issues. I was tired after this race (as I had been all week) and considered scratching the 100 back. I felt like I had no easy speed and therefore knew it would be exceedingly painful. But I decided that would be silly.

    100 back, 1:03.5

    Decided to use the same strategy I used at the Albatross meet, but I was tired from the start. My splits were pretty even: 30.7 and 32.7. But
    my legs were toast and the quads were screaming afterward. The last time I swam the 100 back, in a Jaked at Nats, I went 1:01.9 fully tapered and as the only event I swam that day. So this is probably about right on short rest and as the third event of the day.

    Two other thoughts. First, I realize the I have never swum the 100 back in yards untapered. No wonder -- it's painful when the legs aren't rested. Second, not sure I agree with
    Quick and Speedo about not dying as much on a 100 back. When you spend so much time underwater, I think the oxygen debt and energy cost is greater.

    100 fly on 400 medley relay, 1:04

    Before the relay, I had some concerns about
    making it through this race with shot legs. I was not able to kick as far as usual and had one of my worst pianos ever in the last 10 yards. Honestly, I thought I had gone a 1:08. So I was surprised to see a 1:04. My recollection is that I've swum a 1:04 every year I've done this relay
    at the end of the day.

    50 free lead off on 200 free relay:

    Had only 3-4 minutes rest after the 100 fly. didn't even bother to think about kicking. Got off the blocks faster on this one, but had
    nothing. 26.9. Same time I went last year on this relay with the same lack of rest.



    Whew, survived. . I missed my B70 yesterday -- I think that suit helped when the going gets tough and the legs are dead! I felt less rested for this meet than I did the Warrenton meet. Not sure why. It could be that I trained harder the week before I took a few easy days? Every event felt harder. It is interesting though that my last two relay times were the same as prior years with B70s. If anything, I tend to think that my training is even less suited now to swimming 5 events in a day.

    After the meet, I hurried home to go to the airport with the fam. Because of the weather, we were delayed 3.5 hours and didn't get to our hotel until midnight. I only had about 3 hours sleep. Felt bad for Lil Fort, but she was still game to get up very early for her 5K with Mr. Fort. And she ran great. She chopped off major time, ending in around 26:40 and descended every mile. And she had a huge smile on her face whenever I saw her on the course! Mr. Fort said his hamstring didn't bother him, so that was good. We are back from lunch and expo shopping. Dinner with friends later.

    Hope everyone swam well today! I saw Speedo put in a very nice 200 free after all that pressure.

    Updated April 17th, 2011 at 03:54 PM by The Fortress

  15. Tuesday, April 5

    by , April 5th, 2011 at 04:11 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Swim/SCY w/Speedo @ OakMarr:

    Warm up:

    500 various
    200 fly drills
    10 x 25 back shooters
    100 scull

    Main Sets:

    12 x 75 backstroke kick @ 1:30
    4x through:
    3rd 25 fast
    2nd 25 fast
    1st 25 fast
    -- "Fast" for me was about 100 pace
    -- This is a great set but was more troublesome than usual for me: got a cramp, kept losing my nose clip and generally did not have enough rest to stay under. I did 8 w/o fins and then 4 w/fins to get more rest.

    100 EZ

    6 x (25 AFAP w/fins + 50 EZ) @ 3:00
    -- 2 free (11 lows), 2 belly shooters (high 10, 11), 1 breast (14), 1 back shooter (11 low)

    100 EZ

    4 x 25 bursts

    50 EZ

    -- Pete left and, to my surprise, Lil Fort's coach from last year hopped in my lane. (He's coaching an age group session in the afternoon at Oak Marr now.) This caused a delay of workout b/c he's a fly-back-SDK-er and we had to chat. He also asked about my parachute. I gave him the masters pitch, but he is obsessed with triathlon at the moment.

    20 x 25
    odds = power shooter w/parachute & fins
    (5 belly, 5 back)
    evens = EZ kick on back for air

    100 EZ

    Total: 3350/1900 kick



    Glad I could get this workout in with Speedo before he starts really slacking off next week. I think he is slightly addled about 12 x 75 kick, no fins @ 1:30 being a "taper" set though. Edit: whoops, he isn't tapering yet.

    I'm working on my entry for Canadian Nationals. In light of the order of events and that fact that I'm not staying to swim on Monday, I'm entering: 200 IM (50 fly split), 100 fly, 50 fly, 100 breast, 100 free (50 split), 100 back & 100 IM. Pretty good OOE for me with the magic of split requests, except for the 100 IM being last. Canada does not actually have split request forms to pre-submit. The officials fill out an event card before the race and treat it as a separate event. I've never swum the 100 breast in SCM before; I'm going to add 12+ seconds to my B70 yard time.

    I'm planning on a few days of recovery starting on Monday so I won't swim like a dead fish the following Saturday at Zones. I'm entered in: 100 free (50 split), 200 mixed medley relay (back leg & split), 50 breast, 100 back, women's 400 medley relay (fly leg), and women's 200 free relay. Think I may scratch the 50 breast as this is already an obscene number of events for me. But that's fine with the two relays at the end. This will be my last day of swimming in the 45-49 age group.

    Jimslie finally entered Zones and will be arriving next Friday. He also announced recently that he wasn't sure if 3 week tapers really helped. His idea of a taper is "not to abuse yourself the week before." Not sure about mid-D types, but this does not work for sprinters. Or at least the way I train.

    Am going to use the foam roller later. Think I will lay off the legs tomorrow. I'm more tired after that then I was from yesterday's 2 workouts.

    Updated April 5th, 2011 at 09:37 PM by The Fortress

  16. Friday, April 1

    by , April 1st, 2011 at 10:07 AM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Got up early and sent Lil Fort off to Girls on the Run at 7:30 and then headed right to the gym.


    bench press, 120 x 2 x 15
    deadlift, 200 x 2 x 10
    back squats, 280 x 2 x 10
    bicep curls, 100 x 2 x 8
    leg press, 450 x 2 x 8

    -- bagged core work for today and hit the pool for a longish recovery type swim.


    Warm up:

    600 various

    10 x 50 shooters @ :55

    Main sets:

    8 x 300 cruise free, no fins @ 15 RI

    10 x 50 fly @ 1:00

    100 free for time: :57

    200 EZ

    Total: 4300



    Wow, it's amazing how much of the day is left when one works out in the morning. Have to do this more often!
  17. Fort Stretching Tips

    by , February 28th, 2011 at 02:53 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    As I get older, stretching and staying flexible have seemed to increase in importance. Stretching can speed recovery, help remove lactic acid build up and help the muscles generate force. I believe stretching also helps keep me more injury free and prevents tightness from negatively impacting performance. When I stretch on my own, I combine yoga poses and stretches that focus principally on stretching the back, chest, hips and legs. I rarely stretch the shoulders, so as to prevent further loosening of my loosey goosey shoulder tendons. I do these after exercising and hold the stretches for 30 seconds. I'm also a fan of the P90X stretching DVD. Here are my top 20 stretches:

    Half Moon Pose:

    Standing Separate Leg Pose:

    Standing Head to Knee Forward Bend:

    Stand and bend over grabbing heels underneath. Then touch forehead to shins keeping legs straight and knees locked.

    Standing Bow:

    Wind Removing Pose:


    Fixed Firm Pose:

    Spine Twisting:

    Sit on the ground with your legs crossed. Lift your right leg and cross it over the left, which should remain bent. Hug the right leg to your chest and twist the trunk of your body to look over your right shoulder. Change legs and repeat (i.e. looking over your left shoulder).

    Cat Stretch:

    Begin on all fours, hands directly under your shoulders and knees directly under your hips.
    Inhale as you drop tummy towards the floor and look up over your head. Exhale as you bring your tummy back up, rounding your back as you tuck your chin in and tuck your tailbone in.

    [nomedia=""]Cat Stretch - YouTube[/nomedia]

    Scapular Stretch:

    Sit on floor with knees bent and feet on the floor. Place arms under knees grabbing the opposite elbow. Pull back with your back. This is a good stretch for the mid back.

    Knee Drops or Hip/trunk Twists:

    Bring the knees up and bend them to 90 degrees, shins parallel to the floor and arms out to the sides. Contract the abs and rotate the torso to lower the legs to the right, bringing them down to the floor. Bring the knees back to center and lower to the left side.

    Spinal Twist:

    While lying face up on the mat, grab the right leg (straight) with the left hand. Slowly twist the leg to the left straight to the floor while keeping both shoulders on the ground. Great stretch for the glutes and back.

    Hamstring Stretch:

    Lie on your back and place a piece of exercise tubing (or just use your hands) around the bottom of one of your feet. Pull the tubing and raise your leg at the same time until a comfortable stretch is felt. You can also pull the leg to the floor (left leg to the left side and right leg to the right side) to open up the hips.

    Piriformis Stretch:

    Lying on your back, cross your legs just as you might while sitting in a chair. Grasping the "under" leg with both hands, pull the knee toward your chest until you feel the stretch in your buttocks and hips.

    External Hip Rotation Stretch:

    Sit down with knees bent. Rest one ankle on the opposite thigh. Lean forward pushing with hands.

    Adductor Stretch:

    Sit up on the floor with legs spread. Reach forward with hands, trying to put chest on the floor. You can also bend to the right and to the left in this position to stretch the oblique muscles.

    Kenpo Quad Stretch:

    Lay on your stomach. Grab your left heel with your left hand and stretch. Do the other side. You can also do this laying on your side. To make it harder and also stretch the glutes a la P90X, tuck one knee under and then reach back for the heel. Try to place your hands on the floor in front of you.

    Gastroc (back of the calf) Stretch:

    Lean against a wall or other stationary object, both palms against the object. The leg you want to stretch is back, several feet from the wall, your heel firmly positioned on the floor. Your other leg is flexed about halfway between your back leg and the wall. Start with your back straight and gradually lunge forward until you feel the stretch in your calf. Keep your back foot straight and angled 90 degrees from the wall.

    Groin Stretch:

    Seated, put the soles of your feet together. With your elbows on the inside of your knees, gradually lean forward with a straight back and gently press your knees toward the ground.

    Forearm Stretch:

    Get on all fours. Place hands on floor with fingers pointing back to your knees. Gently pull back, stretching forearms.


    Updated January 7th, 2012 at 12:29 PM by The Fortress

  18. Tuesday, Jan. 25

    by , January 25th, 2011 at 05:06 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up:

    700 various

    Main Sets:

    12 x 25 shooters
    belly, left, right, back

    8 x 50 back, no fins @ :55

    50 EZ

    12 x 50 @ 1:00
    odds = evil
    evens = single arm fly

    50 EZ

    8 x 75 w/fins, done as
    25 EZ speed fly + 25 shooter + 25 EZ

    100 EZ

    Total: 2800



    Glad I had an aerobic workout planned for today. I was pretty sore from re-commencing drylands and tired from getting up early. Felt like I was riding really low in the water. Hope I have a little more pep tomorrow to do some speed work. Was planning on doing some yoga today, but just didn't have the time or inclination. I've informed Lil Fort that it is her job to get me to do my RC exercises tonight!

    It's going to be a busy weekend. Mini Fort has HS District swimming championships Friday and Saturday night, Fort Son has the Mid-Atlantic Sprints for rowing, and Mr. Fort has a half marathon this weekend (just using it as a training run though). In light of her lack of club training, Mini has very happily switched from the 200 IM to the 100 fly (sticking with the 100 breast) -- much less torture.

    I am still eagerly awaiting my Finis Foil monofin.

    Our dearest Jimslie has successfully had his retina reattached via laser, and, if all goes well, will be back in the water next week.



    Bikram Yoga, 90 minutes:

    Got a second wind and decided to go to the 8:00 pm bikram yoga class after dinner (hope I'm not too full!). As Dean of Students in my family, I've determined the children are adequately prepared for mid terms! The class was quite crowded. Hoping to sleep well between that and the magnesium injection. The bod always feels better after a good stretch!

    Updated January 25th, 2011 at 11:22 PM by The Fortress

  19. Experimental PRP

    by , January 15th, 2011 at 12:32 AM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Today, I ventured with trepidation for more PRP (platelet rich plasma) injections on my big toe area.; This is a lingering chronic injury that began several years ago when I dropped the Finis Shooter monofin (made of fiberglass) on my big toe, slicing it open, copious amounts of blood all over the pool deck. While x-rays showed no fracture at the time, an MRI last year showed that I have tendon damage & degradation and some arthritis in that area. I may also have an osteophyte (bone spur) arising to protect the injured area.

    Because PRP worked reasonable well on my shoulder a few years ago -- I went from chronic awful pain from tendonitis to only occasional pain when I overdo it -- I decided to try it on my foot. My doctor himself has had the same procedure and, after several years has only intermittent pain in his foot. My first PRP session was a bust. I had the "forever bronchitis" right afterward and was forced to go on a short cycle of prednisone, which negated the PRP. I felt some slight improvement after the second session, which I deem my "first" session. Today, then, was then my second treatment.

    This time, and because he was focusing on the osteophyte, my doc anesthetized me somewhat. I had also put a lidocaine patch on my foot for several hours beforehand. PRP on the foot is absolutely excruciating, much worse than the shoulder. So, I was extremely grateful for this. I had about 15 injections around the problem area while clenching my teeth and trying to think of happier things. The pain medication is now wearing off and I can really feel it. Probably won't do much tomorrow.

    He was worried that these problems could be causing plantar fasciitis in my foot. But I have not experienced that problem thus far. I am supposed to work on mid foot and toe mobility until my next treatment. My doc has had runner patients with the same issue. In their case, with all the running, PRP postpones surgery for many years, but they ultimately have to have it and endure a 6 month recovery. I am hoping PR will spare me this. Or at least put it off for a very long time since I don't run anymore. () However, I wonder if my mega kicking takes a similar toll? I wouldn't think so since it's not weight bearing, but who knows?

    Anyway, here are a couple interesting links I found:

    Other than that, my day was perfectly fine! Going for a monster night's sleep since Mr. Fort and Lil Fort are on their annual Daddy-Daughter ski trip with his best friend and his daughters.

    Updated January 15th, 2011 at 10:02 AM by The Fortress

  20. Hanging Up My Suit, Dec. 18

    by , December 18th, 2010 at 02:27 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Hanging up my suit ... through the weekend.

    I must have overdid it Thursday because I woke up worse instead of better (as I expected) on Friday. After skipping a workout and officiating a Friday night swim meet, I feel just as crappy today. So I'm ditching all thought of working out this weekend. I'm not even sure I could get to a pool without an hour commute each way in any event. The roads here in urban suburbia are absolute gridlock with the weekend holiday shopping traffic. It's frightening.

    Poor Mini Fort is the latest target of the nasty family cold and, unfortunately, has another swim meet tonight. I've asked for a substitute official for me. Still hoping I don't succumb to another long round of bronchitis. Or I will be very very crabby and grinch like. Ho ho ho. Off to wrap presents and sip green tea.
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