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  1. Mia Hamm Rage, Sunday, March 10

    by , March 10th, 2013 at 09:57 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    This is almost too unbelievable to write. I got to the pool today and it was closed due to a kid throwing up in the pool. I was beyond furious. I sat down right there and wrote a long letter to the AD. This is 3 times in 10 days that I've been there. I hope I'm not the only person complaining. I had arrived when the lifeguard class was supposed to end (late afternoon), so I had no time to get to OakMarr for a workout before it closed. I called Mr. Fort to rant and he accused me of having a "Mia Hamm rage." Apparently, she was viciously competitive with a wicked temper.

    I had no choice but to attempt a short workout at the gym pool. When I arrived, half the lanes were taken by kids. I had to share a lane with a kid who was swimming with dad timing. The problem was he didn't seem to understand the concept of splitting lanes. I asked him 3x to stay on his side. Once, I almost slammed into him head on doing free. I asked his dad to keep him on his side. The fourth time I just ran right over him. I am in the running for the Kid Hater Of The Year nomination.

    I've been going to SpringHill all these years because I can usually get my own lane between 1-3 and it's deep. But I'm completely fed up. Tomorrow, I'm going to Mason and sign up for their Aquatic Center on a monthly basis. They're open from 12-2 for lap swimming. I hope it won't be too crowded; it hasn't been overly bad in the past when I've gone at that time. It will mean almost an hour of commuting and a more expensive pool, but I don't care anymore. I just can't take the kids and closures. I can try SpringHill after a weight workout or something. I feel like the guy from Network who shouts, "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore."

    I hope this doesn't happen in Pittsburgh. The neighborhood high school is finishing a brand new pool (what a concept, a high school actually having a pool) and I was hoping to swim there. From what I can tell on the website, Trees Pool at U of Pitt isn't open to the public. Maybe Water Rat knows.

    So, a very frustrating day and more lost training. At this point, I just don't care about my SCY times. I will be racing for fun. There's 6 1/2 weeks until Nationals. I can't go super hard for that long. On Allen Stark's advice, I'm going to take it EZ the next 5 days before Albatross and then settle in for the last 4 1/2 weeks of hard training, which will take me to April 17, a few days before Zones, to start tapering. Even if I have nothing much to taper from, I will still taper to at least have fresh legs and sharp 50s. The 100s will be what they will be. My only events for Zones will be 100 free and 100 fly and relays. I was going to cruise a 200 back, channeling chowmi, but I see it's right before 100 fly. No go.

    Here's what I got in at the hot shallow gym pool bubbling over with kids:

    600 various
    4 x 50 scull w/agility paddles
    4 x 50 torque drill w/agility paddles
    50 EZ
    10 x 25
    odds = free @ 100 pace @ :30
    evens = EZ @ :45
    50 EZ
    5 x (25 AFAP + 75 EZ)
    -- 5 free, 2 evil
    -- ran over kid
    -- interval done around noodlers
    4 x 50 scull w/agility paddles
    100 EZ

    Total: 2150 m
    Swim Workouts
  2. Weekend Workouts

    I had two good workouts this weekend with TNYA. On Saturday I swam at John Jay College. We were six in our scy lane, but everyone was friendly and of similar speeds so it turned out to be one of those energizing crowded workouts with good esprit de lane.

    1000 warmup

    10 x 50 FR @ (1:10--1:05--1:00, 1:10--1:00--:50, 1:10--:55--:40, 1:10)

    6 x 100 kick @ 2:15, 2x thru FL/BK, BK/BR, BR/FR [1:40-1:45]

    4 x 100 pull w/paddles @ 1:25
    50 easy @ 2:00
    100 FR fast @ 1:15
    50 easy @ 1:45
    3 x 100 pull w/paddles @ 1:25
    50 easy @ 2:00
    100 FR fast @ 1:15
    50 easy @ 1:45

    [Set continued on with through two more rounds, but I had to get out early.]

    Today I enjoyed a nice workout at City College. The water was much too warm, but the pool was relatively uncrowded, which is rare with team workouts. I moved down from a lane of 5 to share with one other swimmer, and enjoyed using the slower intervals in order to push my pace on some of the swims. Here's how it went:

    500 warmup (400s, 100k)

    6 x 50 BR working pullouts @ :20 RI
    6 x 50 BK with fins (25K / 25S) @ :20 RI
    6 x 50 FR with fins @ :20 RI, desc. 1-3 and 4-6

    400 pull with paddles @ 6:15
    [practiced left-side breathing]
    4 x 100 IM fast @ 2:00
    [goal was to keep all under 1:25, and I did--fastest was 1:20]
    8 x 50 (25 kick / 25 swim), easy, @ 1:15
    [nice to have the slower interval on these to cool down--I switched to my ventilated cap here and that helped too]
    300 pull with paddles @ 4:45
    [left-side breathing]
    3 x 100 IM fast @ 2:00
    [2:23s and a 2:24]
    6 x 50 (25 kick / 25 swim) warmdown

    That was it!

    I've been back in the city a week, and was very happy to resume diving practice last Thursday night. I'm making good progress, and need to learn 3 more dives so that I can compete at an upcoming meet. I'm definitely eager, and have lost some of that initial fear of going off the boards. I did smack for the first time this past week--water is surprisingly hard when you hit it wrong--but luckily it was only from the 1m, and only on my shins (I was trying to do a back dive tuck, but kicked out too late and ended up almost doing a back flip, hitting the water awkwardly shins first). It hurt, but didn't keep me from getting back up and trying again. The resulting bruises somehow go more than 180 degrees around my lower legs--not sure how that happened from a single impact.

    I'm also back coaching some with TNYA now. I had been a regular weekly coach for them some years ago, but after 6 years or so of that decided I needed a break. The invitation to rejoin the coaching staff came last fall just as I was feeling a little guilty for not giving back to the swimming community more, and casting about for a way to do so that didn't involve attending meetings--I'm allergic to those. I put off starting until I was back from the Florida, so last Thursday was my first morning back on deck. I also subbed in for the team's weekly LPZ workout on Saturday, after swimming the regular workout. So far I'm really enjoying it, and am finding that giving technique feedback gives me added focus in my own workouts. It's also something of a confidence boost to feel like I have knowledge and experience that can help others. For now I'm just subbing for other coaches when they can't make their regular practices. That situation seems pretty ideal--since we have 18 workouts a week, that means I can do as much or as little as I'm inclined to do, without making a regular commitment yet.
  3. 3|10|13



    1500 easy continuous WFS

    8 x 25 flutter kick WS
    • 10 seconds fast, the rest slow each

    Updated March 11th, 2013 at 06:48 AM by __steve__

  4. 1000 Miles... almost.

    by , March 10th, 2013 at 04:44 PM (Alex's swim journal)
    I'm "big-time" sore and stiff today from yesterday's sprint bonanza. Maybe if I did it more often I wouldn't be so sore, but I really don't like the shorter stuff as much as I like the longer stuff. It took me a while to warm up and I didn't feel like pushing it, so I cut it short after 2000: 2100 SCY/40-45 minutes.

    200 EZ fr
    200 pull
    200 moderate fr
    200 pull
    200 threshold pace fr
    200 pull
    200 dolphins w/ fins (100 fly/100 bk)
    200 breast kick w/ board
    200 breast
    200 back
    100 EZ fr

    I tried just doing everything slowly and focusing on technique; that helped loosen things up a bit.

    I am approaching a HUGE milestone... in fact, if I had felt better today I would have crossed it without even being aware. I noticed my GTD mileage today after I entered my 2100 yards, which now stands at 110.24 for the year. And I remembered telling myself earlier this winter that I would probably cross the 1000-mile mark for swimming sometime after I had 100 for the year...

    That's 1000 miles of swimming since I started keeping track in January 2011, when I got back into the pool and retired as a serious runner (not that I was ever that serious!). In 2011, as I went from recreational swimmer to training for open water, I went from a total of maybe 4 miles in January to averaging 40 miles a month by August. I finished 2011 with 342.65 miles. I swam 546.72 miles in 2012, which means that when I hit 110.63 miles this year I will be at 1000... I'm only 0.39 miles away--about 682.5 yards!!!

    I think tomorrow I'm going to celebrate the occasion by swimming a quick warm-up; maybe 400 yards and then doing my first 1000 IM; I'll be through the 250 fly (just about ready to die probably) and 32.5 yards into the backstroke leg when I pass the big 1000.
  5. Sprint ladder

    by , March 10th, 2013 at 12:16 AM (Alex's swim journal)
    So, as I feared... a sprint ladder; lots of rest, no excuse to not push hard on every rep. At the end of the workout Scotty added the 25s off the block in IM order. I was already sore before I left the pool... but at least the soreness was symmetrical (i.e., both shoulders and lats on both sides).

    Here's how it went down:

    450 warm-up
    400 fly (25-50-75-100-75-50-25)*
    400 back (25-50-75-100-75-50-25)*
    400 breast (25-50-75-100-75-50-25)*
    400 free (25-50-75-100-75-50-25)*
    4 x 50 off the blocks (25 AFAP followed by 25 EZ recovery; IMO)
    4 x 25 underwater
    150 EZ

    *We did these ladders on :45 interval per 25 yards (so we went on 1:30 after the 50; 2:15 after the 75, etc.). And took about 3:00 rest between strokes. We kept them pretty fast... my first 25 fly was in :18 and I was at :48 at the 50-yard mark of my 75, for example... this is about meet speed for me. Also, I was happy on the back to see that i hadn't lost any speed, despite not doing any hard backstroke in a week... if anything I was fast with the fresher muscles; my first 25 was in 17-18, even as I slowed down to cruise into the wall and check the clock.

    Scotty was about a body-length in front of me on the fly and back on these; I was about half to a body-length in front of him on back; we were neck and neck on the free. Tough, but a fun workout. 2800 SCY/85 minutes.
  6. Saturday, March 3, 2013 Coeur d'Alene, ID Meet Results

    by , March 10th, 2013 at 12:09 AM (Fast Food Makes for Fast Swimming!)
    Got up this morning and left about 5:30am, which was a 2 hour sleep in for me, so I was happy. At least I wasn't going to work, but I do have to go in on Sunday morning instead since I missed today for the meet. Work still has to get done.

    There were about 60 people in the meet today, but it was spread out nicely on the total timeline, going from ~10:15am till 4:30ish pm when the final 1500 heat finished. I didn't space out the events too well though, doing the first 2, last 2, and one in the first 1/3 of the meet as well, in addition to 3 relays with my workout group. It was a good day of swimming, having over 3000 meters of racing in 8 races, plus all the warmups/cooldowns, and the 205 miles of driving each way to and from the meet.

    200 IM - 2:25.27
    30.04 / 38.23 / 43.72 / 33.28
    My legs were just dead after the backstroke...during the breaststroke leg, I thought to myself "boy the 400 IM is going to hurt later".

    400 Free - 4:33.08
    30.80 / 33.73 (1:04.53)
    34.91 / 35.13 (1:10.04)
    35.17 / 34.99 (1:10.16)
    34.55 / 33.80 (1:08.35)
    Not too shabby. A few seconds slower than last fall, but this was a few heats after the 200 IM as well. At least it was split decently.

    50 Free leadoff in the 200 Free Relay - 26.76
    Pretty sure this is a SCM best time in the 50 for me.

    200 Free - 2:08.01
    29.44 / 32.18 / 33.29 / 33.10
    This was a better swim than this meet last year, at least in terms of time. I got "dusted" (to use That Guy's words) by Larry Krauser, a 60 year old who just set the World Record in the 200 Free right next to me. He dusted me by 0.05 seconds, but did admit that I gave him a hell of a draft for the first 150 of the race.

    100 Fly split in the 400 Medley Relay - 1:05.40
    This was just fun with the team. I caught us back up after the neighboring relay left us in the breaststroke leg. Good thing our Wenatchee team has a flyer

    200 Free leadoff in the 800 Free Relay - 2:19.40
    I originally was going to do the 200 like normal, but my earlier time was good enough, so thought I'd do a 100 Split Request. Went a 59.30 UGH!! super tired!!, and then had to finish my leg as quickly as I could manage. Our team was going for the LMSC record as well. We did get that by about 5 seconds.

    400 IM - 5:19.11
    32.07 / 37.55 (1:09.62) - serious...I tried to go easy
    43.37 / 42.85 (1:26.22)
    46.19 / 46.56 (1:32.75)
    35.40 / 35.12 (1:10.52)
    I was just DEAD prior to this race. I didn't want to swim it, but did it anyway on sheer principle. You sign up for it, you swim it.

    1500 Free - 18:19.46 - New LMSC Record

    I was semi-dead tired prior to this one as well, and almost just fell into the pool off the blocks. We had no counters either (our fault for not trying to find one), but magically around lap 17 or so some numbers starting appearing in my lane! Thank you mystery person!! I wouldn't have been able to count the whole thing myself.
    I just cruised alongside That Guy for the first 3-400 of the race. My UGHness starting wearing off, so I decided to pick up the pace a bit to see what happened, and I felt okay. I kept looking over to T.G. to see if he was coming, but didn't seem to want to. Around the 800, I tried giving another speed increase, and was still feeling good...slowly increasing my lead. 300 to go, one last speed increase. WAIT A MINUTE!!...cancel that. I'm fine at my 800 cruising speed. Finished the race and just hung on to the wall, glad to be against dry land again.

    They had to input all the 1500 times manually as they decided to do a little reconfiguring at the last moment with the heats to combine them from 3 heats into 2. It was a good idea to save another 30 minutes for all of us, but no computerized splits on Meet Manager. I'll have to check the computer tape backup...
    About the backup...(I'm sorry T.G.) I left the meet getting the meet manager backup file on my flash drive, but left the hard copies sitting on the desk in the office of the pool. I called the meet director on the way home and let her know that so she can save them for me. SOOOOOOO, both our 800 free split request times are still unknown, but they are in Coeur d'Alene.