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Of Swimming Bondage

bondage:

  • dictionary.com: the state of being bound by or subjected to some external power or control

Though I swore at 22 I would hang my suit up forever, I am compelled to swim, to relish in the pain/pleasure continuum across workouts and meets, to be forever & happily enslaved by this odd sport.

In my 50s now, I've created this blog to keep me motivated, chart my progress and, possibly, offer some insight to others.

  1. Released on my own recognizance

    by , March 22nd, 2017 at 07:14 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    At my Monday morning PT session, my therapist ran some tests that measured two differentials: differential in strength between my left and right shoulders; differential between my strength on the front and back of my left shoulder (through internal and external rotation). Being a data geek, this was cool as it was a computerized machine that did the measurements. He wanted to see the left to right differential be within 10% and I was. On the front versus back muscles of the left shoulder, the differential wasn't exactly where he wanted it to be, but he was pleased enough with the progress. He officially released me from 'in office' PT for the next 6 weeks, advising me to continue with the 'home PT' program I did when I was recently out of the country on an every other day basis. After 6 weeks, I'll go back in and he'll run the tests again. Over that time period, he wants me to continue to increase my swimming volume by 10% per week. If I continue to swim without pain and I show some decrease in the differential between the front and back muscles of my left shoulder, we'll then continue on this path. I left with a bit of a bounce in my step and hope this plan works!

    This morning, I was back in San Francisco and figured that, as I'm only up to 1,250 in workout volume, this is a perfect time to resume my pool tourism. Thanks to my JCC membership in Arizona, I got into the very nice JCC of San Francisco, over on the western edge of the city towards the Presidio. The pool was a fine 5 lane, 25 yard pool and had enough swimmers, but not more than 2 per lane. Here is what I did:
    • 1 x 500: IM, going kick-drill-kick-drill-kick by 25
    • 7 x 50: on 1:05, breast kick with snorkel and finis ankle strap around my knees. I saw this drill from Gary Hall Sr. / Race Club on a video with Rebecca Soni to help focus on narrowing your kick
    • 8 x 25: on 0:35, 4 each backstroke and freestyle swim, focusing only on technique
    • 4 x 50: on 1:10, 3 breaststroke swim smooth; 1 freestyle swim smooth

    TOTAL: 1,250 SCY

    Comments:
    • I have been very good recently about doing a 30 minute routine daily that is a mix of light yoga, stretching and meditation. I am feeling quite good physically.
    • Beyond the pool at the JCC, the facility was quite good. Once I'm more confident about the state of my shoulder over the next few weeks, I hope to come back to that JCC and do a swim in the morning and one of their evening yoga class. I'm probably not going to consider formal yoga classes, though, until after that next round of testing with my PT.
    Tags: pool tourism
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  2. The sub-continent, sobriety and the slog back

    by , March 14th, 2017 at 07:29 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I got home this Saturday afternoon after a glorious 3.5 week trip to Nepal and India. The main reason for the trip, volunteering with Habitat for Humanity in Nepal, was my wife's 50th birthday gift** to me, but we tacked on a week together vacationing in India and then I added another 8 days to work from my company's office near Delhi. I have done some pretty cool trips in my life, but this really topped the list. The work in Nepal was hard, brute force physical labor digging and building the foundation for houses; the ultimate 'functional training' workout. While it was hard for all of us North Americans to keep up with the work ethic and productivity of the Nepalis we built with, I actually surprised myself with how well I did. As you might imagine, I didn't swim much, but managed a few new pools and wrote about it here - https://www.1001pools.com/single-pos...-Sub-Continent.

    Today marks my 113th day of sobriety since I decided late last November to try out life without alcohol through at least the end of 2017. So far, I'll have to say that the experiment is going smashingly well. One of the biggest impacts I found was my ability to adjust to the other size of the world time zones, both on the trip to Nepal and now on the return. I still had some issues, but as it's a 12.75 hour time difference, I was amazed that I felt on the Nepal timezone by about 4th/5th day of being there. I've been sleeping well enough since I got home and seem to be on the same track for recovery here. The two big daily impacts of this choice, though, are quality of sleep and then focus throughout the day. I took my first drink at the end of my freshman year of college, spring of 1986; I'm not sure I'm going to balance those 30 years out with 30 years of complete sobriety, but, at least for now, I'm seeing nothing but upsides from this choice.

    This week marks the official start of what will likely be a long slog back to swimming and racing shape. I was religious about doing my home shoulder PT exercises while traveling and, aside from a couple of days of pain on the trip, have been feeling pretty good. I saw my PT on Monday and I'm now on an every-other-day swim schedule. This week I'm just going about 1K each workout, with much of it still kicking, but will start to gradually increase both the overall volume and the swim volume. He wants to see how I adapt to this, with the goal of continuing formal PT 1-2x per week (and home PT 2-3x per week) until I get back to about 75% of my prior volume and intensity. He thinks that, if I can get there pain-free, he'll release me from in-office PT and send me on my way forward. I'm going to be very cautious about this - my mid/longer term goals are to be back racing in the SCM season (but without great expectations for times), but then be ready to race fast next spring at the Indianapolis nationals. We shall see how that goes!

    ** A bit early since I don't "age up" until the end of the month
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  3. Authorized to swim ... a bit

    by , February 2nd, 2017 at 09:25 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    After my PT session on Wednesday, my PT authorized me to get in the water today in a very restricted way:
    • 15 minutes
    • The vast majority of it kicking with my arms at my side
    • If I wanted to swim, do breaststroke first
    • Try one lap of freestyle


    I'm trying to be a good patient and, after my 2.25 mile run on the treadmill, did 750 yards as follows:
    • 1 x 400: IM, 25 kick w/arms at side - 25 drill
      • Fly - right arm only
      • Back - right arm only
      • Breast - 1 pull (easy) with 2-3 kicks
      • Free - right arm only

    • 4 x 75: kick w/snorkel going 50 flutter - 25 breast
    • 1 x 25: easy freestyle
    • 1 x 25: easy breaststroke


    It felt glorious to be in the pool and there was no pain during or after. I'll go to PT tomorrow and see what's next from here.

    The funny thing is that I've been in a FANTASTIC MOOD the entire day since I swam. I know it was next to nothing that I did, but my mood has been off the charts. Even my sometimes surly teenager noticed tonight when I was picking her up from her workout. She took the time to actually look up from her cell phone and say, "Dad, why are you so happy?"
    Categories
    Uncategorized
  4. Woodlands Miss & Hit

    by , January 31st, 2017 at 07:09 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    In my little more than 22 years of business travel, I have not once had to go to Houston, except maybe to fly through it. This week changed that and did so in a heart-breaking way. My client has an office in The Woodlands, which means I was mere minutes away from one of Texas's best pools, the Conroe Independent School District natatorium ...



    ... but took my PT's advice and stayed away, opting instead for the Fairfield Inn's even more functional improvised PT table:



    I can only hope that my client relationship continues long enough to bring me back here when I am healthy enough to swim!
  5. Hotel PT improvisation

    by , January 27th, 2017 at 12:57 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    After ignoring my doctor's and PT's orders to not swim last weekend (https://www.1001pools.com/single-pos...oint-Vancouver), I focused on being a good patient while traveling this week, with an improvised PT table in my Residence Inn room (the red chair being there to give me enough length).



    I've continued to run about 2 miles on the treadmill, two to three times per week. I still don't like running, but I've figured out that a Pandora station built around the Sex Pistols song, "I'm a lazy sod" creates the right mix of high-energy, angry music that motivates me to go harder.

    Updated January 27th, 2017 at 02:11 PM by pwb

    Categories
    Strength Training and Dryland Workouts
  6. Ignoring doctor's orders for a special pool

    by , January 22nd, 2017 at 10:59 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I violated doctor's orders yesterday. I couldn't stop myself. I admit that I was in a bit more pain after doing so, but it was SOOOO worth it!

    Canada's newest elite competition pool officially opens tomorrow, the new UBC Aquatic Centre (http://www.newpool.ubc.ca/) in Vancouver ...



    ... and the university team got in earlier last week, but they had some special "sneak peak test swims" this weekend. Thanks to my oldest daughter, I got onto the invitation list for yesterday morning's test swim.

    This facility is just awesome and a much-needed upgrade over their almost 40 year old former pool ...



    The centrepiece is the 8 lane, 50M x 25M pool which also has a bulkhead option to run 25M courses length-wise instead of width-wise. But, like the Saanich Commonwealth pool in Victoria, the UBC pool also features great community swimming amenties like a play pool that has a mini lazy river and water toy features for the kids, a massive ~30-40 person hot tub and another 8 lane, 25M training pool with 1M and 3M diving boards. The facility has an impressive array of windows, is gleaming white and incredibly bright (whereas the old pool was kind of dark and gloomy).

    The only slight bummer for me was that we were only allowed to swim in the 25M pool, play pool and hot tub. Over this weekend, they were using these test swim times as training times for the staff. During my swim time, they were practicing working with the bulkhead in the competition pool, as that was a feature that didn't exist in their old facility. As both my orthopedist and physical therapist have told me not to swim for 6 to 8 weeks (and I've been a good patient for 3 weeks), that was probably for the best for my shoulder. I did my self-imposed minimum 1,000 (for inclusion on my www.1001pools.com blog) of mostly kicking and drills. I probably did about 200 of it actual swimming freestyle ... and later in the day could feel the old twinges in my shoulder that I'm trying to get rid of. Had I swum long course, I suspect it would have been worse for me.

    And, finally, on the power of positive thinking side, not getting to swim in the competition pool just gives me another reason for a future trip to combine my three passions - family, pleasure travel** and swimming.

    ** I want to be quite emphatic that there is nothing about business travel that inspires passion in me!
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  7. Year in Review / Preview

    by , January 4th, 2017 at 08:03 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    Unfortunately, there was a little prophecy from my Year in Review / 2016 Preview (http://forums.usms.org/entry.php?37755) as the post ended with a paragraph that included, "...Unless I have blown my shoulders out..." I should be more careful of what I write!

    2016 Year in Review

    High-level metrics for 2016:



    • I had an absolute banner year for adding pools - with 49 new pools bringing my total up to 268. Check out the post here - http://www.1001pools.com/single-post...ear-in-Preview.
    • In aggregate, I worked out in 64 different pools over the year. The top 10 pools I trained in were:


    1. My pool - 123 swims
    2. Cactus - 22 swims
    3. Valley of the Sun JCC - 19 swims
    4. Burlingame Aquatic Center (CA) - 9 swims
    5. Pleasant Valley Aquatic Center (CA) - 8 swims
    6. Stanford - 5 swims
    7. Westmoor Giammona (CA) - 5 swims
    8. Greensboro Aquatic Center - 4 swims (e.g., 4 days of Nats)
    9. McDowell Mountain Ranch (AZ) - 4 swims
    10. Ventura Aquatic Center (CA) - 3 swims


    • Swam 267 days of the year, which is pretty much my average for the last 5 years, but I would have been much higher had I not almost stopped swimming for most of December once I got my MRI results.
    • Total yardage swim was 780K SCY-equivalents which is right where I wanted to be (e.g., averaging 15K per week) and my 4th longest year:

      1. 2011 - 968K SCY equivalents
      2. 2012 - 901K SCY equivalents
      3. 2010 - 789K SCY equivalents
      4. 2016 - 780K SCY equivalents
      5. 2009 - 762K SCY equivalents
      6. 2014 - 753K SCY equivalents
      7. 2015 - 712K SCY equivalents
      8. 2013 - 641K SCY equivalents
      9. 2008 - 555K SCY equivalents
      10. 2007 - 456K SCY equivalents
      11. 2001 - 426K SCY equivalents
      12. 2002 - 313K SCY equivalents
      13. 2003 - 274K SCY equivalents
      14. 2004 - 251K SCY equivalents


    Note that I swam so little in 2005 and 2006 that I didn't even track it; those were the super-high-growth years of my last company and years where I was shuttling back & forth between US, Europe, India and Japan a lot.


    • On the business travel front, it wasn't such a hot year as I recorded my max days of any business travel (112 vs. 105 last year) in the last decade since I've been tracking that. That is definitely going in the wrong direction as I was 89 days in 2012, then 100, 101, and 105 over 2013-2015.
    • On the upside, I guess I managed to do more day trips and/or flew more early morning flights as I only slept away from home on business trips 66 nights, which is down from 72 nights last year. Whoo-hoo! Almost a week more in my own bed


    On the competition front, I managed to race well in the SCY season and still managed to record some Masters best times:

    • 1000 free
    • 1650 free
    • 50 back


    I suspect that I am going to have to soon give up the hope of still being able to improve my times as I continue to age, as this list keeps getting shorter.

    2017 Preview (aka Rehab for Indy)

    As referenced in my last post, I am finally in the process of fixing my long ailing left shoulder. While the MRI results looked ominous, my appointment with my orthopedist was, all things considered, better than I expected. The high-level / best news is that he doesn't seem too concerned about the partial tear. He did caveat that, as he has no baseline MRI other than this, he cannot tell if it this is a recent 'trauma-based' tear, if it's due to long-term overuse or, even if it's just natural decay that many of us get as we age. He believes that the two major contributors to my pain are bicep tendinosis and rotator cuff tendinitis. For now, he's prescribed PT, some slightly stronger NSAIDs and he strongly cautioned me to plan for ...


    • 6~8 weeks of no swimming and no other sports with rotation (I can kick)
    • Not to start back swimming until I feel pain free and the PT feels like he thinks I'm ready to do so
    • ... and when I start back, to do so very gradually


    As this definitely shoots my SCY season to hell and as I never really train for LCM, I've set my mind on 2017 as my Year of Rehab with a longer-term racing plan to be back in top form by Indianapolis Nationals in 2018. I might get there sooner, but I also want to take the time to fix this now (in service of my ultra-long-term goal of finally setting a National Record when I hit the 90-94 age group!).

    For the time being, I'm going to focus on the PT and mix together yoga (which he OK'd), treadmill running, dog-walking and hiking for some semblance of aerobic activity. When I get the opportunity to go to a new pool (www.1001pools.com), I'll do a 1500 kick, but I find pure kicking workouts so boring that I doubt I'll be in the water much unless it is to 'bag' a new pool.

    Updated January 4th, 2017 at 08:41 PM by pwb

    Categories
    Planning
  8. Nines and oughts, once kind, now naught

    by , December 21st, 2016 at 11:47 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    Back when I was younger, the times around my decade transitions - the "nines" ages transforming into the "oughts" - were magical times of gifts my body bestowed upon me both in and out of the pool, e.g.,
    • From 9 to 10, I remember the wonder at going from not even being able to qualify for state swimming championships at nine to becoming a 'contender' at 10
    • Nineteen to twenty brought even more magic to my swimming as I finally really learned to swim fly which transformed my 400 IM from a filler event to my best event
    • The transition from 29 to 30 found me really not in the pool, but with even better gifts - my oldest two daughters born in 1996 and 1997


    After that, though, these decade transitions have not been so kind, with my body betraying me rather than rewarding me: the transition to 40 brought me a diagnosis of bilateral hernias in 2006 and eventual repair of these in 2007. I barely competed or trained in either of these years.

    As I look ahead to turning 50 next year, I had envisioned a great 'age-up' year like I had when I turned 45, but, alas, it is not likely to be. I finally got around to having an MRI on my long-ailing left shoulder. While I am sure that the pain is thanks to a long history of swimming, I had never had shoulder pain in all my years of swimming until I did a ~9 to 10 mile lake swim back in 2012 (http://forums.usms.org/entry.php?223...o-lakes-part-1 and http://forums.usms.org/entry.php?22406-2K-kick-w-fins). I continued to train hard through 2012, but eventually did a course of useful rehab / PT in 2013. My shoulder's never been the same since that time. Over our Thanksgiving trip this year to Miami, I had some particularly intense bouts of pain just walking around that lovely city and made up my mind to get this checked out.

    I got the MRI last week and only my family practice NP has shared the results, so I don't know how bad it is. It looks scary when I read this:
    1) You have tendinosis of the supraspinatus tendon with a partial thickness tear
    2) You have arthritis of the acromioclavicular joint with build-up, which is pressing on the rotator cuff
    3) You have a mild deterioration of the teres minor muscle with some swelling
    4) You have a mild biceps tendinosis



    I'm assuming because #3 and #4 are "mild" that those can be taken care of with some combination of rest, rehab. I don't have a follow-up appointment with the orthopedist until January 3rd and expect to spend much of the discussion then on points #1 and #2.

    Until that time, I'll probably swim and kick lightly through the holidays, but don't expect to be posting here until I figure out what my rehab plan looks like.

    I wish everyone a happy and safe Holiday and New Years! I'll check back in 2017.
    Categories
    Uncategorized
  9. BRSM meets MEMO

    by , December 19th, 2016 at 12:15 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    My oldest daughter is back home from college for a few days and, since she's still registered with USMS from Nationals this spring, we decided to host an official practice for the 50% of the Brundage Swim Masters (BRSM) who are in Arizona so we could take a run at the MEMO 400 Kick for Time postal event (https://www.clubassistant.com/club/c...1983&cid=71646). I have done this since 2013, though last year's entry didn't count as I hand-timed it myself. I can count this year, but kind of wish I couldn't since it was the worst performance yet:


    • 12-18-16 - 5:52.76
    • 12-12-15 - 5:30.low
    • 12-06-14 - 5:38.25
    • 12-15-13 - 5:46.34


    My daughter had a decent time, but hers couldn't count: part of the reason she is home now is that she broke her left arm recently and we brought her back here to get some nifty waterproof casts so she can kick. However, while she can hold a kickboard, it wasn't working to do an open turn and so she flipped every turn. It's a bad reason for her to be here early (as, without the broken arm, her coach would want her training in Vancouver until the 20th), but I am loving having her home for a few more days!
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  10. 3rd longest workout of the year

    by , December 8th, 2016 at 11:42 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I've been training very well lately, no doubt strongly influenced by my choice right before Thanksgiving to give up alcohol completely. I had made the decision earlier that I'd try an experimental 'dry year' in 2017 since that seemed like something fun to try to celebrate my 50th year on the earth. Though I've had dry periods here and there over the years, I've pretty much not had a full year of full-on sobriety since 1985. I remember taking my first drink after the end of my conference meet at the end of my freshman year in college (spring 1986). The last time I had an extended period of pure sobriety was the fall of 2009 and my swimming performance absolutely rocketed; as that was also the 'super suit' era, I'm not sure how much was due to the suits, the training or the sobriety. I'll at least remove the suit factor from the equation now. I accelerated the plan to start this fall thanks to my wife telling me that my snoring was noticeably (and unacceptably) louder even after just one drink. I figured dropping the booze could help re-balance the Happy Wife = Happy Life equation and it has proven to be true!

    This morning I'm in Camarillo, CA and swam at my favorite SoCal training pool, the Pleasant Valley Aquatic Center. As I'm going to try to do a timed 3K on the Dec 16th/17th weekend (too late to enter the 3K postal, but still for my own personal comparison to prior years), I developed a (not-so-creative) 3K main set:

    Warmup Sets (1,050 set)
    • 1 x 400: IM, kick-drill by 25s
    • 4 x 100: on 1:20, descend free w/snorkel, 1:13 -> 1:07
      • was feeling very stiff and slow at this stage and worried about my ability to perform on the main set

    • 8 x 25: on 0:30, 2 each stroke, odds easy, evens fast
    • 1 x 50: easy w/snorkel


    Main set (3,750 set / 4,800 total)
    Straight through the following, aiming to be just under my target 3K pace of 2:12 per 200:
    • 1 x 200: on 2:30, was 2:05 (jumped on this a little too hard)
    • 1 x 50: on 1:30, easy
    • 3 x 200: on 2:30, was 2:08+, 2:09, 2:09
    • 3 x 50: on 0:45, 1:00, 1:15, easy
    • 5 x 200: on 2:30, was 2:08+, 2:09, 2:09+, 2:11, 2:09
    • 5 x 50: on 0:45, 0:50, 0:55, 1:00, 1:30, easy
    • 4 x 200: on 2:30, was 2:11, 2:09, 2:09, 2:10
    • 4 x 50: on 0:45, 0:50, 0:55, 1:30, easy
    • 2 x 200: on 2:30, was 2:09, 2:03 (really pushed the last one)
    • 2 x 50: on 1:00, easy


    Sprint Closer (200 set / 5,000 total)


    • 6 x 25: on 0:30, 2 each stroke IM order, no free, odds cruise, evens fast
    • 1 x 50: easy


    TOTAL: 5,000 SCY


    Had I checked my training log and realized that my second longest workout this year was 5,050 yards, I would have doubled up the last set!

    Wednesday
    I had a vision of getting in a morning yoga class and then a swim, but didn't have time for the yoga. Still, I got in a very fun main set that I dreamt up during warmup at the JCC:

    Warmup sets (1,550 set)
    • 1 x 400: IM, kick drill
    • 9 x 100: on 1:20, descend in sets of 3, 1st three w/buoy, paddles & snorkel; next three w/snorkel and paddles; last three w/snorke
    • 8 x 25: on 0:30, 2 each stroke, odds easy, evens fast
    • 1 x 50: easy w/snorkel


    Main set (1,500 set / 3,050 total)
    5 rounds of:
    • 2 x 25: on 0:45, kick, odds easy, evens BLAST
    • 1 x 50: on 0:45, free swim @ 0:32 (just below target 3K pace)
    • 1 x 75: on 1:15, no-free IM swim, descend by rounds
    • 1 x 125: on 2:00, free swim, try to see if I can hold 1:15 (e.g., 1:00 / 100 pace)
      • was 1:16, 1:16, 1:16, 1:17, 1:13+


    Cool-down (200 set / 3,250 total)
    • 4 x 50: active recovery


    TOTAL: 3,250 SCY

    Tuesday
    I was looking for a good 4K workout and found a good base plan in Fares Ksebati's Day 3 workout from this week - http://forums.usms.org/showthread.ph...-Volume-16-000. I modified it, but quite enjoyed it:

    Warmup (1,500)
    • 1 x 400 IM k/d
    • 8 x 75s Kick, dolphin-flutter-breast w/board on 1:15
    • 8 x 25s on 0:30, odds cruise, evens fast
    • 6 x 50: on 0:45, descend in 3s


    Main Set (1,500 set / 3,000 total)
    • 2 x 100s Free on 1:20, hold 1:05/1:06
    • 4 x 50s FLY @ 1:00 Negative Split
    • 2 x 100s Free on 1:20, hold 1:05/1:06
    • 4 x 50s BACK @ 1:00 Negative Split
    • 2 x 100s Free on 1:20, hold 1:05/1:06
    • 4 x 50s BREAST @ 1:00 Negative Split


    Post Set (800 set / 3,800 total)
    4 rounds of
    • 1 x 100s Free on 1:20, hold 1:05/1:06
    • 4 x 25s ST Best Average @ :40


    Cool Down 4 X50 active recovery

    TOTAL: 4,000

    Going further back in time, I got in a great 2.5 mile treadmill run on Monday and had done a version of my 'Broken 3K workout' (http://forums.usms.org/entry.php?399...nica-Broken-3K!). I did the exact same workout, but I had to cheat a bit on rounds 3, 4 and 5 by using various pulling equipment!

    Updated December 8th, 2016 at 11:49 AM by pwb

    Tags: yols20161122
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  11. 18 hours and the 3 x 3

    by , December 3rd, 2016 at 11:52 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    After a long and late company dinner event on Thursday night in NJ, I opted for sleep on Friday morning and just some light yoga before what turned out to be roughly an 18 hour workday. I managed to squeeze in 7 hours of sleep last night and wasn't sure how well I'd do this morning on my 3 x 300 test set, but the result was pretty good, a slight improvement over two weeks ago:

    Warmup Sets (1,800 set)

    • 1 x 400: IM, kick-drill by 25s
    • 4 x 100: on 1:20, free swim, descend, start w/snorkel, buoy and paddles and drop one piece of equipment after each one (1:11->1:05)
    • 4 x 100: on 1:40, IM kick w/board, descend (1:35 -> 1:26)
    • 6 x 50: on 0:55, #1 and #6 cruise w/snorkel, #2 to #5 build to fast IM order (0:31, 0:32+, 0:37, 0:29+)
    • 4 x 25: on 0:35, w/paddles & snorkel, going 5-6-7-8 AFAP strokes off the wall
    • 3 x 50: on 0:45, trying to hold 0:30s, and was 0:30, 0:30, 0:29
    • 1 x 50: easy w/snorkel


    3 x 300 Test Set (1,200 set / 3,000 total)


    • 3 x 300: on 4:00, trying to hold best average both across the 300s and with a consistent effort/pace within each 300.
      • 12-13-2013 - 3:25, 3:23, 3:20, 3:14 (went 4 for some reason)
      • 02-27-14 - 3:16, 3:12, 3:10+
      • 05-21-14 - 3:14+, 3:10, 3:06
      • 01-04-16 - 3:16, 3:15, 3:14
      • 01-20-16 - 3:11+, 3:09, 3:06
      • 02-03-16 - 3:09, 3:09, 3:11
      • 11-20-16 - 3:09, 3:10+, 3:09
      • 12-03-16 - 3:08+, 3:09, 3:08++

    • 6 x 50: active recovery w/snorkel, 2 each on 0:40, 0:45, 0:50


    TOTAL: 3,000 SCY

    Comments:


    • On Wisconsin!
    Tags: test 3 x 300
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  12. Plain scotch kicking

    by , December 1st, 2016 at 02:21 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I had a devil of a time getting to New Jersey this week with my second day attempt being, in the end, successful, but 3 hours late. That crimped my sleep down to a bit more than 5.5 hours, but I got over to the JCC of Central New Jersey (http://www.1001pools.com/pool-pics?l...aItem-it97vwyc), had the pool almost to myself (one other guy) and had enough time to do my first-ever SCY version of my KICKBASE test set:

    Warmup sets (1,550)
    • 1 x 400: IM, kick-drill by 25s
    • 5 x 100: on 1:20, free descend swim w/snorkel (1:11 -> 1:04)
    • 6 x 50: on 0:55, 31 and #6 cruise free w/snorkel, #2 to #5 IM order strong
    • 4 x 50: on 0:55, dolphin-breast kick on back by 25s, try to descend
    • 4 x 25: on 0:30, strong IM order
    • 1 x 50: easy w/snorkel


    SCY KICKBASE set (1,000 set / 2,300 total)

    The set is 4 x 250 kick as follows:

    • The aim is to try to hold a consistent, fast pace across all 250s, in the same way we try to do that on the 3 x 300 test set
    • I had used a 5:00 interval previously in SCM, so used 4:30 for SCY
    • Calculate your KICKBASE as the average 100 pace across the 250s plus 10 seconds
    • Times were 3:53, 3:54+, 3:50, 3:48 which puts my average 100 at 1:32.5, so I'll re-set my SCY KICKBASE to 1:40


    Cool-down w/ 5 x 50 active recovery

    TOTAL: 2,750 SCY

    Comments:
    • I am literally staying two buildings away from the awesome new Berkeley Aquatic Club 50 meter pool (http://www.1001pools.com/pool-pics?l...aItem-ip0jurir), but their lap swimming hours are 8am to 3pm and I have a team dinner that conflicts tonight with their Masters workout
    • Had I gotten into NJ on Tuesday night as planned, I was going to be able to drop into their one morning workout on Wednesday, but it looks like I won't get to swim there again
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  13. Two pools in Miami and early morning zipping

    by , November 30th, 2016 at 10:26 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    My wife, youngest daughter and I took advantage of my copious Southwest Airlines points to travel to Miami over the Thanksgiving weekend to connect up with both my brother's family and an old friend from my Peace Corps days (now, amazingly, a quarter of a century ago!). I couldn't have asked for a more relaxing weekend, better company or better food; it was exactly the kind of getaway I needed personally. On top of all that goodness, I got in two swims at two new pools, having each one almost entirely to myself:


    I was back at home for a great, Monday morning version of my Aussie 200 set, done as IMs and hit some pretty good times (e.g., 0:29 on fly, 0:30+ on back, 0:36 on breast, 0:28 on free). I only ran on Tuesday, but felt good on the treadmill. I was supposed to fly to New Jersey last night, but my flight got so delayed that I switched to a different flight today.

    This morning, I jumped into the JCC pool at 5:35am and performed pretty well on my ZipFizz 200 main set:

    Warmup sets (1,050 set)

    • 1 x 400: IM, kick-drill by 25s
    • 3 x 100: on 1:20, free swim w/snorkel
    • 4 x 50: on 0:55, descend kick on back, dolphin-flutter by 25s
    • 4 x 25: on 0:40, strong, IM order
    • 1 x 50: easy


    SCY ZipFizz 200s (2,450 set / 3,500 total)

    • 5 x 200: on 2:20
      • 03-05-14 - 2:11, 2:11, 2:11+, 2:10, 2:10
      • 09-29-15 - 2:11, 2:12, 2:11+, 2:11, 2:09+
      • 10-13-15 - 2:12, 2:11+, 2:11, 2:11, 2:07
      • 11-24-15 - w/snorkel - 2:10, 2:10+, 2:11, 2:12, 2:12
      • 01-09-16 - 2:05+, 2:07, 2:07+, 2:08, 2:09
      • 02-10-16 - 2:07+, 2:08+, 2:09, 2:09+, 2:10+
      • 03-14-16 - 2:06+, 2:07, 2:07, 2:08++++, 2:09
      • 11-30-16 - 2:08+, 2:10, 2:09+, 2:09, 2:10

    • 4 x 50: active recovery on 0:40, 0:45, 0:55, 1:30
    • 3 x 200: on 2:35, descend
      • 03-05-14 - 2:14, 2:10, 2:06
      • 09-29-15 - 2:18, 2:11, 2:05
      • 10-13-15 - 2:14+, 2:09+, 2:04+
      • 11-25-15 - w/snorkel except last one - 2:14, 2:10, 2:06
      • 01-09-16 - 2:14, 2:09, 2:03
      • 02-10-16 - 2:18, 2:09, 2:04
      • 03-14-16 - 2:14, 2:11, 2:04+
      • 11-30-16 - 2:15, 2:11, 2:04

    • 4 x 50: active recovery on 0:45, 0:55, 1:05, 1:30
    • 1 x 200: on 2:30
      • 03-05-14 - 2:04
      • 09-29-15 - 2:03
      • 10-13-15 - 1:58
      • 11-25-15 - 2:01+
      • 01-09-16 - 2:02
      • 02-10-16 - 2:02+
      • 03-14-16 - skipped it
      • 11-30-16 - 2:01+

    • 5 x 50: active recovery on 0:40, 0:45, 0:45, 0:50


    TOTAL: 3,500 SCY
    Tags: zipfizz 200s
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  14. Half-fun and pulse check

    by , November 22nd, 2016 at 04:31 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    On Monday, I had this vision that I might do 3/4 of my "Fun w/1500s" workout (http://forums.usms.org/entry.php?747...00s-(2nd-time)), but was so slow after Round 2 that I called it a day.

    • 1 x 100: IM drill
    • Warmup 1500 - 500-400-300-200-100
      • 500 pull w/buoy, paddles, snorkel on 6:20
      • 400 IM kick-drill-drill-swim on 6:40
      • 300 pull w/buoy, snorkel on 4:00
      • 200 IM kick-drill on 3:20
      • 100 swim w/snorkel on 1:40

    • Pace 1500: 100-200-300-400-500
      • Original intent was to hold 1:06 pace on 1:15 interval
      • Went 1:05, 2:15, 3:25, 4:36, 5:46

    • 3 x 50: active recovery

    TOTAL: 3,250 SCY

    I felt completely different in the water this morning, Tuesday, and actually performed quite well on a rare SCY rendition of my Salo Pulse plot workout

    Warmup Sets (1,750 set)


    • 1 x 400: IM, k/d
    • 4 x 100: on 1:20, free descend, stripping off one piece of equipment after reach, started with buoy, paddles and snorkel; dropped paddles; dropped buoy; dropped snorkel
    • 4 x 100: on 1:45, dolphin/flutter kick, odds w/board, evens on back descend
    • 6 x 50: on 1:00, #1 & #6 easy free w/snorkel, #2 to #5 strong fly, back, free, free (0:30+, 0:33, 0:36+, 0:28+)
    • 8 x 25: on 0:30, odds easy, evens fast IM order
    • 1 x 50: easy w/snorkel


    Salo Pulse Plot (900 set / 2,650 total)
    8 x 100: on 3:00, pulse plot, going 70-80-90-100-100-90-80-70 percent effort and taking pulse at 0:10, 0:30 and 1:00 after each repeat


    • 02/19/2014 - 1:08, 1:04, 1:02, 1:00+, 1:00+, 1:01+, 1:05, 1:06
    • 03/20/2014 - 1:05, 1:00, 0:59, 0:57+, 0:56, 0:59, 1:01+, 1:04
    • 12/02/2015 - 1:08, 1:05, 1:01, 0:57, 0:57, 1:00+, 1:05, 1:07.5
    • 01/28/2016 - 1:10, 1:07, 1:02, 0:59, 0:59, 1:05+, 1:09, 1:12
    • 02/12/2016 - 1:08, 1:04, 0:59, 0:57, 0:57+, 1:00, 1:05, 1:06
    • 03/02/2016 - 1:11, 1:08, 1:03+, 0:59+, 0:57+, 1:01, 1:07+, 1:09+
    • 03/30/2016 - 1:10, 1:05+, 1:02+, 0:59, 0:59, 1:02, 1:06, 1:08
    • 11/22/2016 - 1:12, 1:07, 1:03, 1:00, 57+, 1:04+, 1:09+, 1:09


    1 x 100: easy

    TOTAL: 2,650 SCY


    Comments:
    • The graph actually looks pretty good, albeit with a less robust set of prior efforts than in SCM.
  15. Not-so-brutal 400s and 3 x 300 test set

    by , November 21st, 2016 at 12:13 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I was off my game plan for training on both Thursday and Friday due to very long work / travel days, but got back into the JCC on Saturday for a not-so-brutal variant of this main set from Stewart - http://forums.usms.org/entry.php?389...rday&bt=123042. Rather than aiming for race pace, I just focused on target 3K pace and was consistently 0:15s on the 25s, 0:31+/0:32 on the 50s, 1:04+/1:05 on the 100s and then was 2:11s on the 200s until I pushed the last one and popped a 2:03.

    This morning, I got in a nice, but not long (~2.5 miles) hike with my youngest daughter and youngest dog in the morning and then was back at the J for a cloudy afternoon run at my 3 x 300 test set, which I haven't done in SCY since February. The result was pretty pleasing:

    Warmup Sets (1,800 set)


    • 1 x 400: IM, kick-drill by 25s
    • 3 x 100: on 1:20, free swim, descend w/snorkel
    • 4 x 100: on 1:45, IM kick on back, descend
    • 6 x 50: on 0:55, #1 and #6 cruise w/snorkel, #2 to #5 build to fast IM order (0:31, 0:32, 0:37, 0:28+)
    • 6 x 25: on 0:30, going 5-6-7-8 AFAP strokes off the wall on the 1st four, easy on #5 and fast (0:12+) on #6
    • 1 x 50: easy w/snorkel
    • 3 x 50: on 0:45, trying to hold 0:30s, but was 0:29s
    • 1 x 50: easy w/snorkel


    3 x 300 Test Set (1,200 set / 3,000 total)


    • 3 x 300: on 4:00, trying to hold best average both across the 300s and with a consistent effort/pace within each 300.
      • 12-13-2013 - 3:25, 3:23, 3:20, 3:14 (went 4 for some reason)
      • 02-27-14 - 3:16, 3:12, 3:10+
      • 05-21-14 - 3:14+, 3:10, 3:06
      • 01-04-16 - 3:16, 3:15, 3:14
      • 01-20-16 - 3:11+, 3:09, 3:06
      • 02-03-16 - 3:09, 3:09, 3:11
      • 11-20-16 - 3:09, 3:10+, 3:09

    • 6 x 50: active recovery w/snorkel, 1 on 0:35, 2 on 0:40, 3 on 0:45


    TOTAL: 3,000 SCY

    Comments:


    • The weather turned cold enough this week that I had to turn the heaters on my pool off. In some years I have made it all the way to Thanksgiving, but not this year. On the flip side, the warmer spring this year meant that I got back in it much earlier than usual.
    Tags: test 3 x 300
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  16. Santa Monica Broken 3K!

    by , November 16th, 2016 at 02:06 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I got up as desired and made it over to the awesome Santa Monica Swim Center and mostly had a lane to myself. This picture was taken after lap swimming had ended - pure tranquility:




    The focus today was to take my Broken Mile test set, double it, and try to hold my target pace for the 3K for time (e.g., 1:06/100 = 33:00). I did a 1,000 warmup and a 250 cool-down with the main set as 6 rounds of:
    • 3 x 50: on 0:45, target was 0:33, was 0:31+ to 0:32
    • 2 x 100: on 1:25, target was 1:06, was 1:04+ to 1:05
    • 1 x 150: on 2:05, target was 1:39, was 1:37, 1:37, 1:38, 1:37+, 1:38, 1:38


    I was still pretty knotted up from the limited racing I did this weekend, but this was a great effort.
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  17. Sinking in Venice

    by , November 16th, 2016 at 12:48 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    My boss had to be in two places at once tomorrow - LA and Philly - and so I'm covering for him for his commitment at the conference in LA, leaving me in a hotel on the edge of Venice. I guess with the Pacific Ocean there and the Santa Monica Swim Center up the road, the locals didn't feel the need to build a lot of other pools as the only one I could find for a swim tonight was the Venice High School Pool - http://www.1001pools.com/pool-pics?l...aItem-ivki1hpe.

    The pool was a nice 1.5 mile walk from my hotel so, while I only did 2K yards, I got in another 3 miles of walking. Tonight was essentially my 'swim out' from the meet this weekend (e.g., more than a cool-down, less than a full & hard workout), but I hope to get in a good & proper workout tomorrow morning at Santa Monica.

    Pool #263 in the books of http://www.1001pools.com. While the picture and list portions of that site are developing well, I need to spend some more time on the blogging portion.
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  18. Ron Johnson Meet Report

    by , November 14th, 2016 at 12:35 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I was a bit of a slacker this weekend - skipping three entered events (200 fly, 50 back, 100 free) - and none of my times were magical, but it was all very solid and, in some ways, encouraging. Here's how the Ron Johnson Invitational / AZ State SCM Champs went down at ASU.

    Saturday

    50 breast
    • Best time - 33.39 (Ron John, 2013)
    • Ron John 2015 - 34.25
    • This meet - 33.75
    • Thoughts
      • This was my warmup race for the 400IM and it completely served its purpose. Not that I swim this much, but it's only the second time I've been under 34, so I was pretty happy with the time.
      • For me, this race is all about the start and pullouts. My stroke felt sloppy, but it revved the engine.


    400 IM
    • Best time - 4:46.48 (Ron John, 2013)
    • Ron John 2015 - 4:55.55
    • This meet - 4:52.09
    • Thoughts
      • I was kind of hoping to dip under 4:50, but this is still a very solid swim considering the training that I've done. It's my 5th best-ever jammers swim as a Masters swimmer and the 4th-best time was 4:51.76, so I've only been sub 4:50 three times.
      • Though I raced next to Darian Townsend last year, I didn't remember how much wake that dude throws off. It was kind of a wave fest until the freestyle. He went 4:14 high or 4:15 low.
      • The only bad part of my race (though I haven't seen my splits) was the fly as it just felt labored ... so much so that I decided to skip the 200 fly later in the day.


    Sunday

    100 IM
    • Best time - 1:02.91 (Ron John, 2013)
    • 2015 Season - 1:06.76
    • This meet - 1:04.67 (or, maybe 1:04.75 ... can't remember the exact time)
    • Thoughts
      • With the exception of my fly feeling as tight as it did yesterday, running into the lane line almost near the end of the backstroke and feeling none of the power and speed I had yesterday on my breaststroke, it was a fine race!
      • I was pretty surprised in warmup how tired I felt from the paltry amount of racing I had done the day before, but this race also served its purpose to blow some cobwebs out.


    400 free
    • Best time - 4:19.70 (Ron John, 2005)
    • 2015 Season - 4:21.18
    • This meet - 4:20.88
    • Thoughts
      • Yeah, I didn't appreciate not being able to hold off Mr. Dickson on the last 50 or 100 ... and I really would have liked to knock off that ancient best time, but I was pretty happy with this race. I was completely gassed when I finished, so I know I gave it all I had today.
      • For whatever reason, I've never been able to put together a really strong 400 SCM in jammers. I still think I have a sub 4:15 race in me, but will have to wait until next year to see if I can demonstrate that.


    Meet overall
    • Very glad I went and my times, in light of my training, were solid - both convert to about 2.5 to 3 seconds slower than what I did in SCY back in Greensboro when I was in far better shape.
    • I have certainly worked my way back out of my summer doldrums and am looking forward to building on this momentum.
    • While I'm not going to have time (or energy) to complete the 3,000 yard postal before November 15th, I think I'll focus my training over the next month on that event and just do it for my own record-keeping around the 17th or 18th of December. After that, I'll make a plan for the SCY season.
  19. Better today ...

    by , November 11th, 2016 at 07:04 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    ... maybe even better tomorrow?

    I felt much improved from yesterday; still not fast, but smoother and with more power. I hit the JCC in the morning and lollygagged through 1,400 SCY. The highlights, aside from the hot tub afterwards, were strong (but not hard effort) 50s going 30- fly, 32- back and 36+ breast. Those are right fine times if they can be doubled and done in the midst of a 400 IM.

    The racing weather will be beautiful as we might be up to about 83/84 each day. I clipped down after my swim and will shave tomorrow. If only I could wear a bodysuit to suck in the gut, life would be sweet.

    Events for this weekend:
    • Saturday
      • 50 breast - rev it up and complete the warmup
      • 400 IM - the main event; try not to get lapped
      • 200 fly - the possible event; my fly feels pretty good, but let's see how that IM goes down first

    • Sunday
      • 100 IM - the warmup event
      • 400 free - the main event
      • 50 back - probably will skip this*
      • 100 free - probably will skip this*


    * I have a HUGE proposal due to a client on Monday morning that they only gave us a week to respond to; almost for sure I need to get out of the pool and behind my computer right after the 400.
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  20. Tapering because WTF not?

    by , November 10th, 2016 at 09:38 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    What do I have to lose by tapering fully ... even if I didn't really put in the full amount of work to deserve the taper? I figure the worst thing that happens is that I do decently well on my 50s and get lapped and then some by Darian Townsend in the 400 IM. Heck, even if I swim well, I'll probably get lapped!

    Unlike The Ice-Swim-Dog of Montana (http://forums.usms.org/entry.php?399...-Into-The-Cold), I'm a complete cold wimp and figured that I needed to swim in something warmer than my 74-75 degree pool. So, I went over to the JCC and did the following in SCY:
    • 1 x 400: IM, k/d
    • 4 x 50: on 0:45, descend free w/snorkel
    • 8 x 50: on 1:00, 2 each stroke, odds kick/drill, evens build
      • not too impressive on the times (0:31, 0:33, 0:38, 0:29+++)

    • 4 x 25: on 0:40
      • #1 - fast/easy fly
      • #2 - fast/easy back
      • #3 easy
      • #4 fast free - solid 0:12 low (felt good)

    • 1 x 50: easy
    • 1 x 100: IM, try to feel smooth 400 IM pace and aim for 1:04; was 1:06
    • 1 x 50: easy
    • 1 x 50: strong free, but feel like 400 pace and aim for 0:28+, which I did
    • 3 x 50: active recovery

    TOTAL: 1,500 SCY

    Comments that are apropos of nothing:
    • I remember when I got my Commodore 64 back in high school and was all het up and stoked about computers. Now, with the amount of time I spend behind one (in one form or another), I'm a little sick of them. (Hence, my haphazard history of keeping up on my blog of late).
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
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