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  1. Sun. & Mon. March 22-23

    by , March 23rd, 2009 at 05:36 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    5 mile trail run


    AM weights:

    Starting up after 9 days off. Went 10 pounds lighter in a few exercises

    bench press, 80 x 2 x 12
    tricep press, 45 x 2 x 15
    standing lat pulldown/press, 110 x 2 x 15
    seated narrow grip row, 100 x 2 x 12
    goblet squat, 25 x 2 x 15
    chin ups, 2 x 10 (10 neutral grip, 10 regular grip) -- Is there supposed to be a difference in difficulty depending on the grip for these?

    russian twist w/med ball, 2 x 50
    incline bench crunches, 2 x 25
    dead bug on bosu, 2 x 25
    V Ups w/med ball, 2 x 15
    crunch on bench w/10 lb weight held by feet, 2 x 15
    long arm crunches, 2 x 25

    prone scapular scrunch, 1 x 25
    external rotators, 10 x 1 x 15, each arm
    seated straight arm dip, 60 x 2 x 25

    5 minutes of stretching (I realize I am terrible about doing this if I'm not at the gym ...)

    PM Swim in SCM Gym Pool:

    Recovery swim. I'm still tired from the meet, hectic weekend, getting up early, etc.

    Warm up:

    700 variety swim, kick, drill

    Hypoxic/Aerobic Sets:

    20 x 25 shooters on back w/MF & nose clip

    50 EZ

    1 x 200 back @ 3:15
    2 x 100 back @ 1:45
    4 x 50 back @ :50
    6 x 50 dolphin kick w/board & MF @ :50
    8 x (25 easy speed fly + easy)

    200 C/D

    Total: 2750 meters


    Post Meet Thoughts:

    1. I have to make more of an effort to push more deeply off the turns when swimming backstroke in practice. I'm pushing off "flat." I believe I could have SDK'd further in the 100 backstroke last weekend, even without a nose clip, if I had. The B70 seems to make me pop up faster. Need to work on the "suit surge."

    2. I was mulling over using the Jimby strategy for the 100 back. It occurred to me that if one is going to use a strategy of markedly changing pace in a race it would beneficial to do speed play and speed variables in practice. I do this sometimes, but think I need to do even more. I did a 6 x 100 backstoke this way last week (Quick also does this set); the speed play is harder than you would think.

    3. The last couple meets I've warmed up differently because I've been swimming the first event each day and had to get out early and/or start warming up early. I basically did some 25 build kicks and sprints, but did no all out sprints off the blocks. This warm up seemed to work just as well or better than previous ones. Maybe not as tiring?


    Sprinter Periodization Cycles:

    Q and I briefly chatted yesterday about periodization cycles for sprinters. I was wondering what would happen to times if a 1 or 2 month cycle were used. For example, on a 1 month cycle, you would train like crazy for 2 weeks, maintain for one, rest for one. We both thought strength gains might diminish. Although Jazz's non-linear weight training suggests perhaps not ...

    I may do this for the next 5 weeks. I have Zones in a bit less than 4 weeks and a SCM meet where I'd like to swim some fast 50s in 5 weeks (May 3). So I may train like crazy for 3 weeks, time permitting (I have a vacation in AZ in there), maintain/rest some for one, and then taper for one. Any thoughts?

    The other "non-periodized" option would be to do what Ande does -- "maintain speed and strength" and not get broken down. Is this
    preferable to re-starting a training cycle? Or is the re-start more like a re-taper? Seems like many swimmers are successful with a double taper 6 weeks apart.



    A friend recommended I had the burpee exercise to the dryland regimen. It's a whole body type exercise. You essentially jump back into a plank, do a push up, then jump back to standing.


    NAG Record:

    I did get to see Jack Conger break Matt Grevers' 200 back national record in the 13-14 age group. What a swim! 1:46.8. The kid didn't even have his hands in a perfect streamline off his turns ...

    Updated March 23rd, 2009 at 06:32 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts , Strength Training and Dryland Workouts , Running
  2. Albatross Results, March 21

    by , March 22nd, 2009 at 10:30 AM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Made it out to MAC for the annual Albatross SCM meet. I love this meet because it's local and in the afternoon. As Chris and Onefish noted, the water was a bit too warm. Swam two events, don't have official times or splits yet. Felt pretty good during warm up. My legs felt heavy/tight though. This just confirms my thought that the legs need a LOT of rest/tapering to be really ready to go fast. A mini taper is good, but just not enough rest.

    Edit: Put in splits

    100 fly SCM, 1:09.80

    As usual, thoughts of scratching filtered into my head. The 100 fly in meters is just so painful for me. Thankfully, it was the first event, so I didn't have to sit around for hours dwelling on it. I promised myself I could retire this event for 2009 if I swam it. Probably will do just that!

    Anyway, went 1:09.8. Previous best was 1:12.1 from the Albatross meet the year before. I hoped to improve my time since I had not swum the event in a year, but not by this much with only a mini-taper. Very happy with the time. As usual, I died on the last 25, but a 4.2 second difference per 50 in fly in meters is not that bad for me. Chris suggested that as I continue to swim more, this may be less of a problem. I certainly don't see any evidence of that! I think I'd have to do more than 25s and 50s in practice. I haven't even done many 50s lately.

    I did count my SDKs. I had planned or estimated that I would use a 9-7-7-7 pattern. I ended up using a 9-7-7 & 5-6ish pattern. I didn't push deep enough off my third turn, popped up prematurely, and had an awkward breakout.

    My prior time was swum in a Pro and done before I started lifting heavy. Jimby is already yanking my chain and saying the 2.3 second improvement is all B70 assist. lol Maybe so, but I'll take the time! Speedster Michelina totally made my day by telling me my fly was pretty.

    100 back SCM, 1:10.94

    Since I was bumped out of the Chris-Clay heat, I had a nice race with Lisa Van Pelt-Diller. I decided to use Jimby's strategy for racing the 100 free that he had posted on the discussion forum. I may have taken it out a bit too easy on the first 50, but it's hard to tell as I have no idea what my splits were. The strategy seemed to work well and it was slightly less painful.

    Edit: Got my splits. Yes, out too easy on the first 50. With my start, this race is effectively an even split for me. However, I really enjoyed swimming it this way and powering home the last 25.

    It was a fun race. I would pull ahead of Lisa on the start/underwaters and she would catch me on the surface. I tried to speed into the final turn and then really pick up the turnover. Had a good last 25, and beat her by about .8 or so maybe. I didn't take that many SDKs off my turns. No idea how many, as I was too busy racin' to count. (I did do 12 on the start.) But the fact that the ones I did were effective suggests to me that I should do more. Need to work on the nose clip angle. I was told I was "looking" too much.

    This was a PB as well. My previous best was a 1:11.7 last June in a B70 with a mini taper. So conditions were pretty equivalent. I swam the 1:11.7 at U of Md, which is a faster pool.

    On a funny note, someone (can't remember who now) told me my race with Lisa was very similar to Chris' race with Clay.

    Had to dash off without any warm down after the 100 back. Made it to my kid's meet with 15 minutes to spare in time to see her swim 2 PBs at finals. So a good swim day for the fam!

    Updated March 22nd, 2009 at 11:37 AM by The Fortress

    Masters Swim Meets / Events
  3. Friday, March 20

    by , March 20th, 2009 at 06:09 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Just a quick swim today:

    700 warm up

    8 x 25, alternate backstroke shooter with nose clip and easy

    50 easy

    Backstroke start, lost nose clip, couldn't find it on bottom of pool, not going to use it tomorrow

    10 x 25, alternate easy speed fly and easy

    50 easy

    4 x 25, alternate build free and easy

    4 x 25, alternate AFAP free and easy

    100 easy

    Total: 1600

    Felt crappy in the water today. Could be the effect of the unintended five day mini taper instead of the planned three day mini taper. Or maybe it's just the stressful week with kids with the flu and a hugely jam packed weekend, including JOs.

    Will just swim the 100 fly and 100 back tomorrow. 100 back starts at 4:55 and I have to be at finals at 6:15. On a happy note, Mini-Fort who has struggled as a 13-14, made her sectional/quad A cut in the evilstroke this am. So there is happiness instead of teenage angst.

    Hoping for a decent nights sleep.
  4. Thursday, March 19

    by , March 19th, 2009 at 03:55 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up:

    750 variety warm up


    6 x 50 easy speed backstroke w/nose clip @ 1:15

    50 EZ

    4 backstroke starts
    first 2, lost nose clip (fortunately it's day glow orange, so I could spot it on the bottom of the pool)
    second 2, tightened nose clip and it stayed on,
    can't decide whether to try it this weekend. Leaning toward doing so.

    6 x (25 easy speed fly + 25 easy)

    50 EZ

    3 x (4 x 25)
    #1 AFAP free
    #2 easy
    #3 backstroke shooter
    #4 easy

    50 EZ

    50 backstroke w/fins AFAP (25.5ish)

    200 C/D

    Total: 2050

    B70 Quote of the Day:

    Paul Smith: "[T]he new suit technologies allow swimmers to swim extremally fast unrested...and to not always have a dramatic drop in times when they are rested."

    This belief is at odds with Jimby's analysis. :P


    Happily, I will avoid turbulence in my 100 back this weekend. Got bumped out of the last heat of the 100 back. Will probably wear my nose clip for the first time in this race. I am slightly worried about thinking more about my nose clip than the race ... Fortunately, since Chris is in my lane in the next heat, he probably won't be snapping photos.

    Allen and Bill posted this USMS seeding guideline on the forum:

    102.10.1 Seeding Principles for Masters Competition

    A All short course meters events, long course meters events and national
    championships shall be conducted on a timed-final basis. Other short
    course yards events may be conducted on a timed-final basis or other
    basis (e.g., trials/finals). In a trials/finals format, competitors shall be
    limited to three individual events per day.

    B Age groups, genders and events of the same distance 200 yards or longer
    may be combined so that no swimmer has to swim alone and lanes may
    be filled.

    C It is recommended that when swimmers are seeded by time and not by
    age groups, the fastest two swimmers in each age group should not be
    seeded into outside lanes. It is recommended that they be moved inward
    one lane or given the center lanes in the next slowest heat, whichever
    is the more appropriate placement.

    D Seeding at meets other than national championship meets may be either
    fast-to-slow or slow-to-fast. Seeding may differ for sprint and distance
    events (events 400 yards or longer) within a meet. Women’s and men’s
    heats may be alternated in the distance events. The meet information
    shall state the seeding for all events.

    E Heat and lane assignments for events of 200 meters or less shall be
    available to all competitors at least five minutes prior to the start of the

    I think this would be helpful for women in mixed gender meets. While some women don't seem to mind the turbulence, I know that myself and others would sometimes prefer not to swim in a heat with all men, especially if we're in a wall lane. In an excellent facility, it might not make much difference. (I swam the 50 fly at Auburn with all boys in lane 8. I noticed very little turbulence.) But, otherwise, it's not ideal. It's just not that fun for someone my size to swim next to someone the size of Hulk or Paul Smith or Ande. You'll get wave action, whether the guy is fast or slow.

    I sent this along to our PV registrar guru, who is extremely diligent, dedicated and helpful.


    Counting SDKs in Races:

    Ande asked me how many SDKs I was going to take in my 100 fly and 100 back this weekend. I had to confess I usually don't count SDKs or strokes when I'm racing. And now I am exposed as a rank amateur ... I think I take quite a few in the 100 fly -- perhaps 9-7-7-7 or more. I may try to count this weekend. As to backstroke, I know I take 10-12 on the start. I haven't SDK'd much on turns lately. Hopefully, I will do more with the nose clip. I no longer dread doing SDK shooters in practice with the nose clip.

    Random Thoughts:

    1. Is eating after practice as important when you're only doing 2000? Surely you can eat less?

    2. Does any master ever go into a meet feeling 100% -- no lingering illnesses or injuries, no little aches and pains, well rested, etc.?

    (Personally, I am feeling very fortunate to be showing no symptoms of full blown flu. Knock on wood.)

    Updated March 19th, 2009 at 06:35 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  5. Tues & Wed. Swims, Mar.18-19

    by , March 18th, 2009 at 03:52 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Tuesday, SCY, solo:

    Warm up:

    800 variety warm up

    Hypoxic backstroke set:

    10 x 50 @ 1:00 w/nose clip

    50 EZ

    Speed set:

    10 x 25, alternate easy speed fly/easy
    10 x 25, UW shooters, 4 belly, 6 back
    10 x 25, alternate AFAP free/easy

    150 C/D

    Total: 2250


    Wednesday, SCY/Solo:

    Warm up:

    800 variety warm up

    Hypoxic Backstroke set:

    10 x 50 @ 1:00 w/nose clip

    100 EZ

    Speed sets:

    6 x (6 x 25), done as:
    #1-2, UW backstroke shooter + easy
    #3-4, easy speed fly + easy
    #5-6, AFAP free + easy

    100 EZ

    Total: 2400


    Mike Bottom on Tapering Sprinters:

    Apparently, really hairy sprinters with big personalities need a lot of tapering. lol


    Anonymous Quote re: B70:

    Got this in a PM: "The suit has a much smaller effect for someone your size."


    Curse of the Wall Lane:

    Chris brought my attention to the Albatross psych sheet this am. As per usual, I'm in wall lanes for 2 out of 3 events, continuing my curse. I was also in wall lanes for 2 of my 3 seeded events at Rutgers (I scratched one). And I was in 2 out of 6 wall lanes at Auburn. Pretty darn high percentage!

    I'm only swimming the 100 fly/100 back/50 fly at Albatross. I thought I had signed up for 50 back, but I signed up for 50 free. I told Jeff Roddin I was scratching that event, as I have to leave the meet early. I may do a split request for a 50 in my 100 back. Not thrilled, to say the least, to be in the same heat as Chris and Clay in the diving well lane, so I may opt to minimize damage. This strategy may also prevent Chris from hopping out after crushing me and taking a nose clip photo.

    I'm not feeling so hot. Achey, sore and no energy the last couple days. Hoping it doesn't get worse.

    Updated March 18th, 2009 at 04:03 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  6. B70 Assist Analysis & Data

    by , March 17th, 2009 at 10:48 AM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Had two kids home with the flu yesterday, so didn't get a chance to workout. Will swim later today.

    I did, however, get a chance to compile the data to answer Jim's challenge on the "Ban the Tech Suit" thread. He has claimed/posted that much (not all) of my recent improvement is due to B70 use. I looked at events that I had swum 3+ times since 2006 or so. After looking at the times, I don't feel like I'm getting a "huge" assist from my B70s, though the suit definitely helps you swim fast(er) unrested. (Technically, I'm never completely unrested for meets, as I usually do a 3 day very mini taper.) There were only 4 of the 13 events where I had what I consider significant time drops after using a B70 (indicated with a * below) -- and in each race it was a brand new B70 suit. These events, swum at the IGLA meet last June (and one in Auburn after a 10 month hiatus), have other confounding factors that could account for the drops, although I concede the B70 accounts for a portion of the drop: (1) there was a 6 month time gap between the SCM swims; (2) I switched from an old recordbreaker Pro (6 meets + use) to a new B70; (3) I had just started lifting "heavy" to be "non-weak" and was about 5 weeks into this effort, and (4) I only swam 3 events at the IGLA meet instead of the 7 events I swam at NE Champs the preceding December. I think these 4 factors weight heavily in the analysis. Plus, Hulk said I looked much stronger in the water at IGLA. With respect to the 100 IM, I had been lifting heavy for almost 10 months before dropping significant time at Auburn last month. Plus, I've just been training more in the last 10 months.

    In any event, here is the time progression. It is mostly linear. I feel like my biggest drops were during serious (2 week) tapers, particularly at Austin in 2008 and Auburn in 2009 where I swam in very fast pools. I think fast pools make a difference. In Auburn, moreover, my drops were from previous B70 swims. I've tried to indicate meets that I did a 2 week taper for with a "T" below. However, I'm a little foggy on this as my first couple years I didn't really taper, just sort of rested up a bit a swam. I've also indicted which suit I was wearing, where I remember. I used an FSI and FSII fairly interchangeably for a period of time. If I can't remember which one I was wearing, I just wrote FS. Recordbreaker Pros are listed as R-Pro; Hi Neck Pro is listed as H-Pro. Times are listed in chronological order, of course.

    In the final analysis, it appears that unrested B70 swims are largely comparable to tapered non-B70 swims, but not always. Of course, this is significant. Without this factor, I would likely not have had a linear progression of times. But is not comparable to a claim that the B70 takes "huge chunks" of time off and gives you automatic lifetime bests. My sense (I recall Ande and Patrick agreed) is that the B70 helps more on longer events than sprints. Perhaps the buoyancy which helps counter fatigue is more significant in longer races. My fastest times, at least in SCY, were just done this Feb. after changing my taper. I had used a B70 in previous races, so don't feel that the improvements can be attributed to the B70.

    Any other analysis or commentary is welcome.

    Backstroke Events:

    50 Back SCY:

    31.17 (poly tank)(10/05)
    30.25 (FS II)(4/06)
    29.92 (FS II (Nats)(5/06)
    30.45 (FS II)(10/06)
    30.15 (FS II)(4/07)
    29.80 (R-Pro)(11/07)
    29.55 (H-Pro)(4/08)
    29.34 (H-Pro, Nats)(T)(5/08)
    29.16 (B70)(9/08)
    28.5 (B70)(T)(2/09)

    B70 Assist: less than .2

    100 Back SCY:

    1:06.5 (FS II, Nats)(5/06)
    2 year gap
    1:04.7 (H-Pro)(T)(5/08)
    1:04.7 (B70)(9/08)(Geek 9/27!)
    1:02.8 (B70)(T)(2/08)

    B70 Assist: No difference

    50 Back SCM:

    33.8 (FS II)(4/06)
    33.2 (R-Pro)(T)(12/07)
    31.7 (B70)(6/08)*

    B70 Assist, with caveats noted above: 1.5 seconds

    100 Back, SCM:

    1:15.1 (FS II)(4/06)
    1:13.9 (R-Pro)(T)(12/07)
    1:14.1 (R-Pro)(4/07)
    1:11.7 (B70)(6/08)*

    B70 Assist with caveats noted above, 2.4 seconds

    50 Back, LCM:

    34.88 (FS II)(8/06)(bad finish)(Worlds)
    34.80 (FS II)(7/06)
    34.17 (FS II)(7/07)
    33.48 (R-Pro)(T)(8/07)
    33.40 (B70)(T)(8/08)
    (Slipped on start. There is a funny video of me letting an f bomb go after this race. I'll try to post it.)

    B70 Assist: .08 second

    100 Back, LCM:

    1:17.0 (FS II)(8/06)(Worlds)
    1:14.1 (R-Pro)(T)(8/07)
    1:13.4 (B70)(7/08)

    B70 Assist: .7 second, 1 year later, same pool.

    Fly Events:

    50 fly, SCY:

    29.8 (poly tank)(10/05)
    29.5 (FS)(4/06)
    28.8 (FS II)(5/06)(Nats)
    29.3 (FS)(10/06)
    28.8 (FS)(4/07)
    28.8 (FS II)(10/07)
    28.4 (R-Pro)(4/08)
    27.6 (H-Pro)(T)(5/08)
    27.5 (B70)(9/08)
    27.3 (B70)(10/08)
    27.2 (B70)(T)(2/09)

    Side note: This progression definitely shows that my fly has improved relatively more than other strokes and possibly benefits more from heavy lifting.

    B70 assist: .1 second

    100 fly SCY:

    1:05.1 (R-Pro)(11/07)
    1:05.5 (R-Pro)(4/08)
    1:04.2 (H-Pro)(T)(10/08)
    1:04.5 (B70)(10/08)
    1:01.3 (B70)(T)(2/09)

    B70 Assist: None, went .3 slower with B70

    50 fly SCM:

    31.88 (FS II)(12/06)(only 1 event this day)
    32.6 (FS II)(3/07)
    31.37 (R-Pro)(T)(12/07)
    31.48 (R-Pro)(3/08)
    30.76 (B70)(6/08)*
    29.99 (B70)(some T)(12/08)

    B70 Assist: .6 second

    50 fly, LCM:

    32.24 (FS)(8/06)(Worlds)
    33.20 (FS II)(7/06)
    31.61 (R-Pro)(T)((7/07)
    31.71 (R-Pro)(8/07)
    31.13 (B70)(T)(8/08)

    B70 Assist: .58 (but this B70 assist came when I was tapered, not unrested)

    50 free, SCY:

    26.72 (poly tank)(10/05)
    26.35 (FS)(4/06)
    26.30 (FS)(10/06)
    25.57 (FS I)(4/07)
    26.58 (FS II)(4/08)
    25.99 (H-Pro)(T)(5/08)
    25.51 (B70)(10/08)
    24.97 (B70)(T)(2/09)

    B70 Assist: None, swam the same 25.5 in an FS I.

    50 free, SCM:

    29.2 (FS II)(3/07)
    28.7 (R-Pro)(T)(12/07)
    29.2 (R-Pro)(3/08)
    28.5 (B70)(12/08)

    B70 Assist: .2 seconds, one year later and in a faster pool.

    50 free, LCM:

    29.87 (FS)(7/06)
    29.71 (FS)(8/06)(Worlds)
    29.76 (FS)(T)(7/07)
    29.2 (R-Pro)(T)(8/07)
    29.3 (B70)(7/08)

    B70 Assist: None, faster in Pro.

    100 IM, SCY:

    1:08.6 (poly tank)(first race as master)(10/05)
    1:07.1 (FS)(4/06)
    1:07.7 (FS)(5/06)
    1:07.8 (FS)(10/06)
    1:07.5 (FS II tank)(4/07)
    1:07.0 (R-Pro)(10/07)
    1:06.8 (H-Pro)(5/08)
    1:04.1 (B70)(2/09)*

    I was stuck on 1:07 forever in this event ... made me dislike it. There's really been no improvement per se in the evilstroke leg. Splits are always 6-7 seconds apart, usually the latter.

    B70 Assist: Big drop here, 2.7 seconds, but it was after a 10 month hiatus in the event and after lifting heavy for 10 months)

    Updated March 17th, 2009 at 05:41 PM by The Fortress

  7. GMU Implodes

    by , March 15th, 2009 at 07:21 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Yikes! Was hoping to go to a "normal" masters workout on Sunday. But the plumbing went haywire at GMU last night. They had to cancel Senior Champs and our masters practice. The plumbing backed up and, er, flooded everywhere. I imagine suit disintegration will be in full force when they're done shocking the pool ...

    So, had to do another sprinty type practice. Perfectly fine, as I have a meet in 6 days. My shoulder was a little iffy from weights and tossing and turning last night, so I wore fins.

    SCY, solo:

    Warm up:

    800 variety warm up

    Aerobic Set:

    20 x 50 @ 1:00

    odds, easy speed backstroke working SDks w/nose clip, 1st 25 = 12 dolphin kicks, 2nd 25 = 10 or so.

    evens, tempo dolphin kick w/board

    Thought: SDKs are way easier w/the nose clip. There was little perceived effort in these 50s, yet I was coming in on 29.5-30. The only effort was holding my breath. If I really want to make progress in this area, I need to get more serious about CO2 tolerance at practice. I've been shirking it in backstroke for many months.

    50 EZ

    Speed sets:

    6 x 100 free @ 2:00

    #1 25 fast, 75 cruise
    #2 50 cruise, 25 fast, 25 cruise
    #3 25 cruise, 25 fast, 50 cruise
    #4 75 cruise, 25 fast
    #5 fast (:55ish)
    #6 easy

    This is harder than you might think. It's rather exhausting to switch gears mid swim than just doing a fast 25.

    100 EZ

    3 x (50 AFAP backstroke from push w/nose clip + 200 EZ)

    #1 went 25-25.5ish
    #2 went 26ish, trying to use hands/arms a bit
    #3 went 25.5ish trying to snap knees more on the SDK

    Moral of the story: Don't think, just swim. Or, possibly, the first one in an AFAP set may be the fastest.

    Total: 3300


    Random Thoughts:

    1. Was thinking about sports injuries a bit today. In general (many exceptions), it seems like women tend to get injuries from the waist up and men tend to get them from the waist down. Maybe cuz women are typically bigger on bottom and men are typically bigger on top?

    2. Was thinking that women should commence wearing briefs or jammers under their B70s like men. This would protect against embarassing suit malfunctions. It would also give women the benefit of something men who do this have had for a long time: increased compression through the butt/hip/thigh area. However, this thought is now wasted as FINA just rule that only one suit will be allowed, effective immediately. I wonder if masters who aren't aware of FINA ruling will nonetheless carry on with this? What happens if someone is wearing illegal suits at a masters meet?

    3. Who benefits the most from weights, a skinny swimmer or a mesomorphic swimmer?

    4. Had some oatmeal today, at Jazz's suggestion. I realize She Puff does this on a daily basis. It wasn't too bad. Seemed to have more staying power than my usual breakfast.


    Ugh. Fort Son has the flu ... If Mini-Fort catches it before her meet this weekend, I'll have to move out it will be so ugly in the house ...

    Updated March 15th, 2009 at 11:35 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  8. Double, Sat., March 14

    by , March 14th, 2009 at 05:52 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    After ditzing around & getting pounded on for 2 days, I finally got a decent double in. It actually felt like awhile since I had lifted. lol

    AM Weights/Core:

    standing lat pull down, 130 x 2 x 10
    bench press, 80 x 2 x 12
    narrow grip seated row, 110 x 2 x 10
    (think I'm using my back to much in this, so reduced weight a bit. probably should watch a video to make sure.)

    double crunch w/med ball, 2 x 25
    russian twist w/med ball, 2 x 50
    dead bug on bosu, 2 x 25
    V ups w/ med ball, 2 x 15
    (McTrusty is right -- these are fun!)
    double crunch on bench w/feet holding 10 lb weight, 2 x 25
    (adding weight makes these harder and it's harder to balance on the bench than the floor)

    10 chin ups
    2 x 5 pull ups

    external rotators, 10 x 2 x 15, each arm
    seated straight arm dip for RC, 60 x 2 x 25

    PM Swim:

    Went to the local rec center. Knew it would be crowded on a Sat afternoon. It was, but I somehow managed to have my own lane for the fly set.

    Warm up:

    850 variety warm up of swim, kick, drills


    10 x 75 @ 1:20, backstroke w/nose clip
    moderate pace, working on SDKs w/clip

    50 EZ

    15 x 50 @ 1:00
    25 easy speed fly, 25 easy DAB

    50 EZ

    3 x through:
    (Geekity set)

    2 x 25, 12.5 fast, 12.5 cruise
    50 EZ
    2 x 25 AFAP
    100 EZ

    150 EZ

    Total: 3000


    Hip feels better today. But no fast kicking/kick sets () and no deadlifts. I'm not used to swimming for a whole workout! Felt weird.
  9. Friday the 13th

    by , March 13th, 2009 at 06:43 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Blech, bad day. Woke up feeling sore from deep tissue massage and then my chiro beat me up some more. No fast kicking and no lower body work (run, elliptical, weights, etc) is now advised, though not mandated, for a bit. That leaves so much else ... lol My back is now adorned with bright blue kinesio tape. Guess I'll be more rested for my meet next weekend than I thought ... I had only contemplated a 3 day mini-taper ... Still, better now than at another time, I guess. Hoping to feel better tomorrow after all the body work.

    Was going to get a quick swim in, but decided to bag it until tomorrow in a rare fit of lack of motivation and bad mood-itis. This fit was initially brought on (aside from the soreness) by my kid. What 14 year old misses her heat of the 400 IM at Senior Champs? Yeesh! And I got up early for that ... Rest of the day was likewise frustrating, and I was stuck at the house for much of it. On the upside, I did purchase 3 new nose clips and hope that I can keep them more than 3 days.


    Other News:

    EC Matrix:

    I'm told this is a hot new supplement in sports medicine. It's a mechanism-specific formula designed to help maintain/reduce inflammation in the ligaments. It's apparently not like ibuprofen, which can impair secondary healing. Supposed to be superior to protrypsin or glucosamine.


    A couple weeks ago I posted an article from the NYT lauding plasma regeneration therapy as a new breakthrough in sports medicine. (That's the procedure I used for my labral tearing.) My chiro told me today that, since the article was published, my PRP/pain doc has been swamped and can't keep up with all the new clients. The orthos are apparently up in arms about it, as they feel their business is threatened. This is a bit hard to see as aging baby boomers continue taking up endurance sports though ...

    B70 Ban?:

    Mentioned this on a forum thread, but when I was in the local swim shop today, the owner told me unequivocally that the B70 would be banned "in May" and "flunked" the buoyancy test. This is news to me. I thought nothing would happen until 2010. Hoping I at least get some further use out of my new suit. I suspect there may be modifications forthcoming in future generations of B70s.

    I saw many LZRs and some B70s at Senior Champs today. My kid isn't swimming at finals tonight (scratched) as she's resting for a meet next week, but I'm now getting frequent text updates on how many of her friends have LZRs. The arms race is in full swing!

    Split Request

    Got confirmation today that my split request for the 100 back from Auburn was sent to the top ten recorder for southeastern masters.

    Updated March 13th, 2009 at 07:58 PM by The Fortress

  10. Thursday, March 12

    by , March 12th, 2009 at 03:06 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    No real workouts today. Had a deep tissue massage booked. Um, boy, did I need it! I was sore and tight everywhere. Massage therapist, like the chiro, didn't think my hip was really "injured" (no pulling, tearing, etc). Just thought I had over stretched/over contracted it and it was spasming some. Unfortunately, absent the complete rest Jimby was talking about, it could take awhile to resolve. I'll just stay away from lunges and maybe limit the fast kicking for a bit. On a funny note, she also asked how I can even run with my loose floppy ankles. lol (One other tidbit: If you're rehabbing an injured area, best to use a massage-chiro sequence rather than the other way around.)

    Afterward, swam an easy 1500 and sat in the hot tub.

    Tomorrow, I'll lift and do the workout Geek posted this am. Looked like a very nice and enjoyable speed workout.


    Here's something to chew on:



    1. When you're writing down your weight workout, does the amount of the weight come first?

    2. Is anyone doing plyometrics? If so, which exercises?

    3. Anyone have any other recommendations for good core exercises for variety? Anyone doing a wood chopper on the med ball? (That will make Jazz grind his teeth, I'm sure.)

    4. If you do pushups with a weight on your back, is this putting more of a load on your shoulders or your torso/back?

    5. Is anyone using resistance bands like Ande? Anyone have an opinion on them?

    6. How often are we supposed to use the foam roller? Every other day?

    Updated March 12th, 2009 at 03:27 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  11. Wednesday, Mar. 11

    by , March 11th, 2009 at 04:10 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up:

    750 variety warm up

    Main sets:

    5 x 100 @ 1:45, single arm fly drill

    50 EZ

    8 x 75 kick w/MF, done as:
    25 AFAP belly shooter + 10 seconds rest + 50 tempo dolphin kick (odds on back, evens w/board
    (no real interval for the 75s)

    100 EZ

    5 x (4 x 50) @ 1:00

    #1 easy swim
    #2 easy kick
    #3 whatever I felt like
    #4 AFAP backstroke w/fins

    Went 26.5ish on the backstrokes. Choked on the 4th AFAP one big time. Had to take an extra 1:00 before starting the last 4 50s. Didn't beat myself up or feel the need to wear a hair shirt.

    100 EZ

    Total: 3100

    Not much yardage, but I got some fast 25s and 50s in.

    5 minutes hot tub



    1. Does it make that much difference in strength gain if you're an ADD lifter or a methodical lifter following a plan like Lezak's?

    2. Does anyone notice elbow or wrist pain when doing push ups? (I didn't yesterday as I didn't do that many, just asking.)

    3. Jazz thinks my Cavic fly exercise is "silly." lol. Not sure. Maybe it would be more beneficial if it was done on a machine like Cavic used at The Race Club. I recall that Dara Torres was doing a similar exercise on the yoga ball, except that it was freestyle specific. She would hold a 10 pound circular weight in each hand and simulate swimming freestyle while balancing her torso on the yoga ball. I tried this once a long time ago -- it was NOT easy. Mini-Fort saw me doing the Cavic exercise and thought it was cool, so she's tried it. She's under the impression that is it "helping" her fly. I think in her case it's pure placebo.

    4. Ahelee mentioned she knew of no elite masters yet who were doing Cross Fit training. I seem to recall Tall Paul telling me they were incorporating Cross Fit type exercises at The Race Club. Of course, its application to masters is much more problematic because of our propensity to injury and relative fragility. The Smiths are experimenting. Need to ask exactly what exercises they're doing!

    5. Anyone glance at the nutrition article on the Cross Fit website? The diet looks very Zone Plan-ish and low carb. I just don't think I could follow a diet like that. May account for how cut the chicks look though.



    Saw this article in an email from USMS:

    I've been a horrible sleeper since I turned 40, so I definitely agree with the point about our capacity for effective sleep diminishing. However, Mr. Miller then says the solution to this is more "restorative" sleep. Huh? How exactly does this happen if you can't sleep soundly and effectively? Maybe Chris can ask him to clarify this superficial analysis!

    Updated March 11th, 2009 at 06:02 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  12. Core + Run, Tuesday, Mar. 10

    by , March 10th, 2009 at 04:11 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Wasn't sore from weights yesterday. Of course, I didn't do too many lifts either. Weights seemed to have helped my drylands; feel quite a bit stronger and able to do more. Did my first push ups since college! (Well, I've tried them before, but they always bothered my shoulders, so I stopped.)

    long arm crunches, 2 x 25
    russian twists w/med ball, 2 x 50
    iron monkeys, 2 x 15
    decline reverse crunches, 2 x 25
    back extensions w/25 lb weight, 2 x 25
    total ab machine, 130 x 2 x 25
    squat presses w/ yoga ball & raising med ball in air, 2 x 25
    held the plank for 1:30
    push ups, 2 x 15 (and felt easy!)
    cavic exercise on yoga ball w/3 lb weights, 2 x 25

    external rotators for RC, 10 x 2 x 15, each side
    arm extensions w/3 lb weight (front, V, side), 2 x 15
    prone scapular scrunches w/3 lb weights, 2 x 25


    5 mile trial run

    Went on a trail run. Felt great today with some easy speed, no plods. Didn't feel my hip until the last 1/2 mile or so when I was running on asphalt.



    Saw my chiro today. Grilled him the whole time.

    1. Hip issue: My issue is definitely in my left hip, it's not referred pain. He's pretty sure I re-strained it doing lunges. So no lunges for me until it's cleared up completely. Squats with very light weight and running are OK. I'm tighter than usual, probably because I haven't been stretching my hips as much. He encouraged a repeat of the ice bath. I'll try to wrap my brain around that.

    2. Weights: He thinks the weights, especially working up to the heavier ones, have definitely helped my shoulders. My whole scapular area is stronger than before. All the strength in the shoulder/back/scapular area helps compensate for the internal instability. Fixing the muscular imbalance by doing more pushing and not all pulling is also a good thing. He agrees I am very buff -- more buff than when I started this "weight project" last May. He believes I am now more able to defend myself with Mr. Fort traveling so frequently. Oh joy.

    3. Cross Fit: We discussed this briefly. He says it's the "hottest" new thing in fitness. He has many cross fit clients and among them are the cross fit trainers themselves. Found the latter interesting. In his experience, he sees cross fit athletes coming in with shoulder and achilles issues (sometimes also hip/glute issues like mine). He also said something called "Yoga Fit"
    is becoming extremely popular in our metro area. This discipline combines yoga and heavier weights, and apparently attracts strong guys.

    4. Protein: He's worried I might not be getting enough, as I find weights so tiring. He recommends 15-21 grams of protein after heavy lifting. Checked the high protein balance bars I've been eating. They have 15 grams, probably OK for shorter workouts.

    5. Suit Competition: I was perusing Triathlete magazine for a few minutes while I was waiting. There was a wetsuit survey. Couldn't believe how much competition there is in the wetsuit market. The tech suit market is ridiculous by comparison. I hope the Speedo monopoly is a thing of the past.


    Cross Fit:

    Spent some time perusing the site, There is a huge amount of info there! Myriad articles on many topics. Ahelee also turned me on to the cross fit journal where WODs, among other things, are posted. WODs = workout of the day. Looked over some of them. Yikes.

    Here's one:

    5 x through:

    20 pull ups
    30 push ups
    40 sit ups
    50 squats

    Don't think too many masters swimmers could do this! Well, maybe Chris or Jazz. I'm told that swimmers/tris/runners are generally considered weak at CF.

    I like these types of exercises/drylands quite a bit, so wouldn't mind trying to work up to it gradually. I think cross fit is something you need to approach with caution and not go crazy right away.

    (Jazzy, I did notice a WOD that consisted solely on 1 max lift deadlift repeats.)

    Here's a cross fit swim workout that looked pretty fun to me and I may give it a go sometime:

    200 IMs for time, done as:

    3 x through:

    10 air squats + 50 fly
    10 pull outs + 50 back
    10 push ups + 50 breast
    10 crunches + 50 free

    (didn't indicate an interval)

    For Jazz:

    This is what Cross Fit says about squatting:

    Why Squat?
    The squat is essential to your well-being. The squat can both greatly improve your athleticism and keep your hips, back, and knees sound and functioning in your senior years. Not only is the squat not detrimental to the knees it is remarkably rehabilitative of cranky, damaged, or delicate knees. In fact, if you do not squat, your knees are not healthy regardless of how free of pain or discomfort you are. This is equally true of the hips and back.

    The squat is no more an invention of a coach or trainer than is the hiccup or sneeze. It is a vital, natural, functional, component of your being.
    The squat, in the bottom position, is nature’s intended sitting posture (chairs are not part of your biological make-up), and the rise from the bottom to the stand is the biomechanically sound method by which we stand-up. There is nothing contrived or artificial about this movement.

    Most of the world’s inhabitants sit not on chairs but in a squat. Meals, ceremonies, conversation,
    gatherings, and defecation are all performed bereft of chairs or seats. Only in the industrialized world do we find the need for chairs, couches, benches, and stools. This comes at a loss of functionality that contributes immensely to decrepitude.
    Frequently, we encounter individuals whose doctor or chiropractor has told them not to squat.

    In nearly every instance this is pure ignorance on the part of the practitioner. When a doctor that
    doesn’t like the squat is asked, “by what method should your patient get off of the toilet?” they are at a loss for words.
    In a similarly misinformed manner we have heard trainers and health care providers suggest that the knee should not be bent past 90 degrees. It’s entertaining to ask proponents of this view to sit on the ground with their legs out in front of them and then to stand
    without bending the legs more than 90 degrees. It can’t be done without some grotesque bit of contrived movement. The truth is that getting up off of the floor involves a force on at least one knee that is substantially greater than the squat. Our presumption is that those who counsel against the squat are either just repeating nonsense they’ve heard in the media or at the gym, or in their clinical practice they’ve encountered people who’ve injured themselves squatting incorrectly.
    It is entirely possible to injure yourself squatting incorrectly, but it is also exceedingly easy to bring the squat to a level of safety matched by walking. In the accompanying article we explain how that is done.

    On the athletic front, the squat is the quintessential hip extension exercise, and hip extension is the foundation of all good human
    movement. Powerful, controlled hip extension is necessary and nearly sufficient for elite athleticism. “Necessary” in that without powerful, controlled hip extension you are not functioning anywhere near your potential. “Sufficient” in the sense that everyone we’ve
    met with the capacity to explosively open the hip could also run, jump, throw, and punch with impressive force.
    Secondarily, but no less important, the squat is among those exercises eliciting a potent neuroendocrine response. This benefit is ample reason for an exercise’s inclusion in your regimen.


    Next meet: Albatross Open

    Unlike Chris, I'm knocking off weights the week before, not one measly day. Will rest some next week. Nothing that will produce homicidal thoughts though.

    Updated March 10th, 2009 at 05:52 PM by The Fortress

    Strength Training and Dryland Workouts , Running
  13. 2 Quickies + FINA

    by , March 9th, 2009 at 04:06 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Two quick workouts today thanks to the fact that our county elementary schools always close early on Monday. Hate that.


    standing lat press, 130 x 2 x 10
    narrow grip seated row, 120 x 2 x 10
    bench press, 80 x 2 x 12
    tricep press, 75 x 2 x 15 (I'm sure the weight was wrong on this cable machine)
    incline crunches, 2 x 25
    dead bug on bosu, 2 x 25
    quick stretch

    Swim, SCY, Solo:

    750 variety warm up
    4 x 25 build free

    10 x (25 AFAP w/fins + 25 easy) @ 2:00

    200 C/D

    Since I had so little time to swim today, I remembered Rich Abrahams posting that "sometimes it's fine to just step up and do 10 x 25 all out." Ideally, to optimize the speed element, I think these would be done on 3:00 with more recovery swimming in between. I've seen Jonathan Miller recommend that as well.

    Total: 1550

    5 minutes hot tub for hip


    Further thought on weights:

    I re-read the article Hulk posted earlier from on not bulking up. I noticed that there is quite a few caveats in this. Apart from genetic capacity to build muscle (which, like She Puff, I seem to have), to prevent hypertrophy, you've got to watch the calorie intake and keep the volume of sets low. Based on this and my recent fatigue level, I think Q is right that I should do fewer sets in the gym each time. Unclear whether you should always do the same exercise or mix it up ... Also, I think running would help prevent bulk.

    As to the fatigue, however, I've decided I have some low grade bug. I've been slightly nauseous and overly fatigued for about 4 days now. So I don't think it's the training, especially as I cut back last week and took an extra rest day.


    Comic Note:

    On a lighter note, when I complained about my hip issue to Fort Son last night, he said "take an ice bath." He has done this during cross country season. Decided to give it a try. Holy crap!!!!! That is difficult. I couldn't stay in it for 10 minutes at all. I did 2 x 5 min. and was bright red! Still, my hip felt markedly better later in the evening and today. Have a chiro appt. tomorrow.


    FINA Rankings:

    I saw Ian Smith posted the link for 2008 Top Ten FINA Rankings.
    [ame=""]2009 FINA Rankings - U.S. Masters Swimming Discussion Forums[/ame]

    I did better than 2007, except in the 50 free. I was really pleased as I only did mini-tapers for my SCM swims and was really sick before LC Zones and swam very few events. This year, I'm going to try to taper more for SCM. Times in general seemed much faster this year, although I haven't looked at them very closely yet. Anyway, here's how I did:

    SCM TTs:

    #2 50 back
    #6 100 back
    #3/9 50 fly (my disallowed 29.99/official 30.76)
    #10 100 fly
    #6 100 IM
    #10 50 free

    (First time I've ever made FINA TTs in the 100 IM and 100 fly.

    LCM TTs:

    #3 50 back
    #4 100 back
    #6 50 fly

    Congrats to all forumites making the list and to fellow bloggers Chris, Ande, Patrick, Jimby and Kirk!

    Updated March 9th, 2009 at 06:25 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts , Strength Training and Dryland Workouts
  14. Sunday, Mar. 8

    by , March 8th, 2009 at 05:20 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Been feeling pretty fatigued from the last couple weeks of workouts. Decided to have an easier weekend. Took yesterday off. Couldn't go to my team practice today, as Mini-Fort was swimming one event at Junior Champs (200 fly, dropped 5 seconds, used my Pro). In fact, I'm worried I won't get to a team practice in awhile as the next 3 weekends are Senior Champs/JOs/Senior Sectionals with a regatta and soccer mixed in. Hmmm... Going to have to beg Mr. Fort to stop traveling so much during the week.

    Spoke with Mini-Fort's coach for quite awhile today. He was grilling me about my Auburn times and training. I told him, as I've told others, that the heavier lifting + the fact that I don't use kick sets as recovery is huge. He is really urging me to swim the 50 free at Sectionals. I hadn't really realized I'd made the QT. (Oddly, I missed in the 100 fly and 100 back, my real strokes.) Think I'll probably pass though, as it's the weekend after Albatross and may conflict with Fort Son's regatta. Plus, my time is not in the SWIMS database, although he seemed untroubled by this fact. lol.

    Anyway, swam at the gym pool today, which happily was a relatively chilly 85 degrees. Just did a recovery workout.


    800 variety warm up

    Recovery Set:

    4 x (10 x 50) @ 1:00

    odds breaststroke pull
    evens single arm fly drill

    odds, 25 belly shooter, 25 easy
    evens, 25 back shooter, 25 easy

    (I couldn't find my nose clip to use on these, and was actually disappointed. May have to order in bulk.)

    all 10: 25 easy speed/DPS fly, 25 easy
    50 easy

    all ten: tempo flutter kick w/board

    100 EZ

    50 fly AFAP w/fins (went 27, felt dreadful)

    150 EZ

    Total: 3150


    Hip is still twingey. It's a 2 step forward/one step back kind of thing. May quit lower body weight work until after the Albatross meet to let it fully recover and then re-start this project slowly and carefully. Very annoying. Will see chiro this week too.


    Last 2 week summary:

    This week:

    swim, 5x, approx 17,200 yards
    weights/core, 3x

    Last week:

    swim, 5x, approx 19,200 yards
    weights/core, 4x
    run, 2x, 10 miles
    spin, 50 minutes

    OK, this confirms I overdid things a bit last week, may have overtrained. Biggest problem with the weights is it makes it really really hard to do lactate work. I feel as though I haven't gotten much in lately. Would like to get in more fast 25s and 50s this week.

    Updated March 8th, 2009 at 05:29 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  15. Swim + Lift, Friday, Mar. 6

    by , March 6th, 2009 at 07:34 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Felt pretty good today. Don't know if I'm getting used to the weights, or it's the effect of post-workout gatorade imbibement, or the fact that it's sunny and amazing outside. Swam first today, not too arduous a workout. Like Patrick, I decided to steal/modify one of Tall Paul's sets today.

    Swim, SCY, solo:

    Warm up:

    750 variety warm up

    12 x 25 UW shooters w/MF
    4 belly, 4 left, 4 right

    Main Sets:

    Backstroke Anti-Bleeding Set:

    10 x 50 backstroke @ 1:00

    Brought my nose clip today. It's the TYR one. It didn't fall off! The difference was pretty significant. I can go much further with less distress with the nose clip. I could also SDK on my back instead of staying on my side for awhile to attempt to avert bleeding. I was doing these easy speed backstroke, but judging from my times, I'm fastest with nose clip + back SDK. I could also go deeper on the SDKs because I wasn't terrified of running out of air halfway to the surface. So this may be the way to revive my backstroke SDKs that have been pathetic lately. However, I do think it will take some time to accustom myself to the nose clip ... and I'm having trouble envisioning how it stays on at the start. But this can all be worked on, I guess.

    Modified Tall Paul Set:

    4 x 200 kick w/MF, descend @ 3:00
    started at 2:19, descended to 2:11

    50 EZ

    4 x 100 free @ 2:00, done as:

    75 cruise/25 power kick
    25 cruise/50 power kick/25 cruise
    25 power kick/75 cruise
    50 cruise/50 power kick

    50 EZ

    4 x 50 @ 1:00
    all 4 strokes, 25 build swim/25 SDK
    (really hard to build into the power SDK ...)
    (forgot to put my nose clip on for backstroke, and got nowhere, comparatively, off the turn)

    50 EZ

    4 x (25 AFAP free + 25 EZ)
    (free felt very strong )

    Random question/thought:

    How many strokes does it take to get up to full speed on sprint free? I think it takes me 4-5. Seems like it should be less?

    100 EZ

    Total: 3150


    Quickie Weights:

    standing lat pulldown, 130 x 2 x 10 (up 10 lb)
    alternating hammer curls w/DBs, 20 x 2 x 10, each arm
    calf raise/press, 150 x 3 x 15
    total ab machine, 120 x 1 x 10, 130 x 1 x 10, 140 x 1 x 10 (must've been underperforming on these previously)
    incline crunches, 2 x 25
    russian twist w/med ball, 2 x 50
    external rotators for RC, 10 x 2 x 15, each arm
    med ball crunch, 2 x 25
    back extensions w/25 lb weight, 25 x 2 x 15
    goblet squats, 30 x 2 x 15
    front lunges, 12.5 x 1 x 15, each leg
    (These really bothered my hamstring/groin area, so I stopped. I think from shirking leg curls and adductors and such, this area of the bod is relatively weak.)
    cavic fly exercises, 3 x 2 x 25


    Is there any protocol about rest between sets?

    Is it really necessary to do abbductors/adductors and curls/leg extensions? If you're squatting, leg pressing, deadlifting, etc.?

    Updated March 7th, 2009 at 12:36 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts , Strength Training and Dryland Workouts
  16. Thursday, March 5

    by , March 5th, 2009 at 04:03 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    The legs are just not on the 48 hour recovery schedule ... The vastas medialis muscle (yes, had to google it) is still sore -- probably from the lunges. In fact, everything seems to be on the 3 day recovery schedule. Just did upper body/core today. Went up in weight on the first 3 exercises listed below. Adding lower body exercises seems likely to interfere with my cross training ... not sure how thrilled I am about that. May have to shift to doing fewer weight exercises each session ... did fewer today. Having a brain fart ... can't remember everything I did ... oh well. lol

    seated narrow grip row, 120 x 2 x 10
    deadlift, 100 x 2 x 10
    seated narrow grip lat pulldown, 100 x 2 x 100
    bench press, 80 x 2 x 12
    10 chin ups

    russian twists w/med ball, 2 x 25
    dead bug on bosu, 2 x 25
    decline reverse crunches, 2 x 25

    prone scapular scrunches for RC w/5 lb hand weights, 2 x 25
    arm extensions, 3 x 3 x 15
    external rotators, 10 x 2 x 15


    Swim, SCM, Hot Gym Pool:

    The pool was almost 88 today. Have to make time to complain next time. Makes no sense, most of the people there were fitness swimmers. It used to be 84-85, no idea what's going on.

    Warm up:

    400 swim
    200 kick

    5 x 100 single arm fly drill @ 2:00

    Anti-Air Bleeding Set:

    10 x 50 backstroke @ 1:00,
    working on side SDKs, hands, and exhaling very slowly

    Modified Salo Set:

    A friend set me the following set, which I've been contemplating as it's a nice speed-type set. Could easily be done with fewer reps too.

    5 x 100 kick w/fins, descend @ 2:00
    8 x 25 w/fins, 15 AFAP + cruise to wall
    5 x 100 w/paddles, descend @ 2:00
    8 x 25 w/paddles AFAP
    5 x 100 w/paddles & fins, descend @ 2:00
    8 x 25 w/paddles & fins AFAP

    I would just have to acclimate to paddles more to do justice to it. I know others with shoulder issues use paddles & fins for speed work, but I'm still leery. I did this:

    5 x 100 kick w/fins, descend to fast @ 2:00 + 50 EZ,
    (5th one = 1:03 (meters))

    8 x 25 w/fins, 15 AFAP + cruise to wall + 1:00 extra rest

    5 x 100 backstroke w/paddles & fins, descend to fast + 50 EZ
    (5th one = 1:07 (meters). I used very small paddles. They felt pretty zoomy, but the time was not really any faster than I might go with just fins. Seems I forget to kick somewhat when I have paddles on?)

    8 x 25 easy speed-fast fly w/fins + 1:00 rest

    5 x 100 dolphin kick on back w/fins @ 1:40
    (supposed to descend these, but I had cramps so just did tempo kick)

    100 C/D

    Total: 3700 meters

    hot tub + gatorade + balance bar


    Strength vs Bulk:

    Trying to decide if I think this article is accurate. >

    Evaluating still. It does seem that swimming itself gives you the bulk in the shoulders and back. Perhaps the weights just make everything more defined? Not sure I buy it, though, as the shoulders still seems bigger from weights. Most guys seem to deny that this is true, but occasionally I read or hear something that is consistent with this. (Example: Ande: "Did you give up weights because you were getting bulky?" Me: "No, not yet." Chris: "I'm not doing calf raises, as my calves are already well developed." etc etc.)

    Updated March 5th, 2009 at 04:15 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts , Strength Training and Dryland Workouts
  17. Wed., March 4

    by , March 4th, 2009 at 04:55 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Not much time to work out today. Probably just as well. My legs/glutes are a bit sore from the squatting and lunging. And how often is one supposed to do these damn things anyway? Every time we lift?

    Swim, SCY, solo:

    Warm up:

    400 swim
    200 kick
    150 fly drills

    12 x 25 4 point shooters w/MF, working on amplitude/hands

    Main sets:

    3 x (4 x 50) @ 1:00, IM Order
    #1 fly/back
    #2 back/evilstroke
    #3 evilstroke/free
    #4 free/fly

    (It occurred to me after I completed this set that it would be a good set to emphasize "fast turns," the downfall of my 100 IM. Maybe next time.)

    50 EZ

    8 x 1:00 @ 1:50, last 25 fast
    odds backstroke, evens backstroke kick

    50 EZ

    10 x 50 @ :45, tempo dolphin kick w/MF & board

    100 EZ

    Total: 3100

    hot tub + 12 oz gatorade


    Backstroke SDKs:

    Still mulling over my issues with backstroke SDKs. It still feels unnatural to use my hands/arms on my back as opposed to on my belly. But the real issue is still breathing. It occurred to me today that perhaps I was exhaling through the nose too much on my turn and initial push off and thus "bleeding" air too quickly. When I tried just holding my breath more, I went farther. I can't do the Ande trick to prevent "bleeding." I think I could be a candidate for a nose plug on 100-200 back. Every time I've tried one, though, I can't keep it on my nose ... Anyone use one for backstroke? If so, how long did it take to acclimate to it?
  18. Leg Overload, Tuesday, Mar. 3

    by , March 3rd, 2009 at 04:06 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Dead Legs:

    Took yesterday off. Thought that would do the trick, but apparently not. I may have been a *bit* too manic/OCD last week on the training front. I get this way after tapers ... On the upside, upper body wasn't too sore yesterday after lifting Sunday. But my legs are thoroughly thrashed. The combo of run/spin/lower body weights last week and this am was deadly. Felt absolutely dreadful in the water today. I have a really really hard time doing lactate sets and fast swimming with dead legs or soreness from weights. It feels like torture; it's so much easier to just do aerobic work. Ah well, I won't be running this week as it's freaking freezing out again.

    I had planned on doing one of Paul's kick workouts, but knew during warm up that wasn't going to happen. Swiped a couple of his other sets, one that Ahelee used in a workout last week. Intended to do both, but had to modify the second set, as it was just too hard for this wimpy sprinter today.

    Unlike Hulk, I'm definitely not doing weights the week of the Albatross meet. Refuse to go into a meet feeling like this! lol

    Core/Dryland Work:

    decline reverse crunches, 2 x 25

    russian twists w/med ball, 2 x 25

    superman streamlines on bosu, hold streamline 5 seconds, 1 x 15

    front lunges w/ 12.5 weights, 2 x 15 each leg
    (saw someone doing this with the lead foot on a bosu. looked harder)

    squat presses w/yoga ball and med ball, raising med ball over head as you stand, 2 x 25 -- this is one of the cross fit exercises; Tall Paul recommends doing it w/ med ball

    cavic fly exercise w/3 lb weights, 2 x 25

    external rotators, 10 x 2 x 15, each arm

    iron monkeys, 2 x 25

    dead bug on bosu, 2 x 15

    Here's the dead bug exercise, which a friend recommended. I did it on the bosu to make it harder.

    PM Swim:

    400 swim
    200 kick
    150 fly drills

    Main sets:

    4 x 200 back @ 3:30
    (Ahelee set)

    #1 fast first 50
    #2 fast turns
    #3 fast last 50
    #4 200 fast (mine wasn't really)

    100 EZ

    10 x 50 @ 1:00
    1st 25 = easy speed/fast fly, 2nd 25 = DAB

    50 EZ

    6 x 100 @ 2:00
    odds, backstroke kick w/fins AFAP
    evens, easy swim

    went :59. :58, 57.5 ish on the kicks. this was sheer torture. meant to do more. just couldn't force myself to.

    200 EZ

    6 x (25 AFAP free + 25 EZ)

    100 C/D

    Total: 3400


    Why are you immediately fatigued after a swim workout, but weight workouts tend to hit you the next day?

    I'm beginning to see why some of the guys taper so much longer than the women now. If you're lifting heavily, it seems your body needs a lot more rest.

    Updated March 3rd, 2009 at 07:34 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts , Strength Training and Dryland Workouts
  19. Team Practice + Weights, Sunday, March 1

    by , March 1st, 2009 at 08:19 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    AM Swim at GMU:

    Warm up:

    6 x 100 swim + 50 kick
    reverse 200 IM drill

    Main sets:

    5 x 300 IM

    odd w/ 150 back @ 4:40
    evens w/ 150 breast @ 5:00

    50 EZ

    9 x 100 kick @ 2:00

    3 kick free, descend 1-3
    100 easy swim
    3 kick choice, descend 1-3

    50 EZ

    6 x 75 @ 1:30
    50 free + 25 AFAP

    6 x 25 UW shooters w/MF, did this w/teammate trying out a MF
    (For Jimby, MF = monofin)

    200 C/D

    Total: 4400

    (didn't seem like I did quite this much, maybe I got some of the warm up wrong)


    Spent some time discussing tech suits during practice and in hot tub. One of my teammates was trying out his new B70 in the water. Another teammate was planning on ordering the Renegade from AquaZone, hopefully to wear it for the Albatross SCM Meet, as B70s are on back order until April.


    Spent some time discussing kicking with a teammate. She wondered why/how my kicking had improved recently. I was mulling this over this afternoon (Ahelee's active mediation, no doubt). Don't think it's weights, as I've rarely done lower body weights (until now, thanks guys). I'm wondering if the increased speed is due to: (a) kick endurance sets, (b) the fast kicking, (c) the combo of both, or (d) the benefits of all of the above are just becoming more evident with time ... I have done more kick endurance sets recently, I think. So hard to know the causation for everything.

    (My coach very helpfully pointed out that she thought my actual swimming had improved relatively more than my kicking. Probably true.)

    PM Weights:

    Went with Mini-Fort to the gym, even though I was nauseous from that disgusting nasty Recover-Wrong from Hammer. Wanted to get weights in as school may be cancelled tomorrow due to snow. [Yes, it's cancelled.] We were running late, so I got out of yoga and just did weights. No sad face there! Left rear shoulder still a bit sore. Did mostly reps of 10 today. Like Jazz, didn't feel like wasting brain cells on counting. Only increased on a few things (deadlift, row, calf press).

    deadlift, 110 x 2 x 10
    seated lat pulldown, 90 x 2 x 10
    leg extensions, 80 x 2 x 10
    leg abductors (on the machine where your legs are straight), 110 x 2 x 10
    leg adductors (hate these), 70 x 2 x 10
    calf press, 110 x 3 x 15, 130 x 3 x 15, 150 x 3 x 15 (realized I was doing these on a ridiculously low weight before, so went up)
    seated narrow grip row, 110 x 2 x 10
    goblet squats w/25 lb weight, 2 x 15
    bench press*, 80 x 2 x 15
    overhead tricep press, 30 x 2 x 15**
    alternating hammers, 20 x 2 x 15 each side (dunno why, these felt hard today)
    external rotators, 10 x 2 x 15, each side

    * This is the first real bench press I've done since college. lol I know it's very low weight, but I'm paranoid as that's how I had the RC blow out. Can't remember what I used to bench in college ... Think I maxed out at 150 on the nautilus machine.

    ** Mini-Fort saw me doing these and was horrified! She ran over and said, "Mom, you're going to trash your shoulder doing that." I appreciated her concern, but assured her it was very low weight.

    kneeling crunches, 85 x 2 x 10
    decline reverse crunches, 2 x 25
    crunches w/ med ball, 2 x 25
    incline crunches w/10 lb eight, 2 x 15

    5-10 minutes stretching
    10 minutes hot tub

    Weight Lifting Question:

    Why can the weight on one machine be completely different than the weights on others? Tried to do a tricep press at the weight I used last Thursday -- didn't feel like the cable was even moving.

    This is the link Jimby provided on Optimizing Strength Training:

    Updated March 2nd, 2009 at 10:38 AM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts , Strength Training and Dryland Workouts
  20. Saturday, Feb. 28

    by , February 28th, 2009 at 05:12 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    5 mile trail run

    I've lost my running legs. The first half was easy, almost went further before turning around. Glad I didn't. Yeesh. Hope to get my legs back a bit more this Spring. And, BTW, when is Spring going to get here?! It was 60 yesterday and then back to the 30s today ...

    Weight lifting questions:

    My rear delts are pretty sore. Is this from the chinning?

    How many reps are typically done with squatting? Or is nothing "typical."?

    Hoping to do a triple tomorrow -- team swim/weights & yoga with Mini-Fort.