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  1. LCM recovery day....ya right...

    by , March 12th, 2012 at 07:20 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    I feel like I work just as hard as normal. My time from the block was good for that early in the morning. I am also feeling the DOMS from my saturday weightlifting workout.

    I also added a 50 to some of the EZ swims so that I could end up at the side my workout sheet was at.

    I also love being back to normal time. No more 3:30 wake ups! Allergies still causing breathing problems but I'll get over it.

    500 free w/zoomers
    8x25@:40 shooters
    8x25@:40 no breathers (i needed at least 2 per 25)
    100 EZ

    8x25@1:00 brust + cruise. 4 fly kick 4 swim
    100 EZ
    50 from block AFAP went 36 (my best time is 32.8)
    150 EZ

    5x100's w/zoomers as
    1=25 fast 75 EZ @ 2:00
    2=35 fast 65 EZ @ 2:00
    3=50 fast 150 EZ @ 5:00 went 37 on 50
    4=100 fast 200 EZ@6:00 went 1:15 on 100
    5=100 fast 200 EZ@6:00 the 100 broken at 25 for :15 R

    Total 2500 meters
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  2. Eating my way through New Orleans...

    by , March 11th, 2012 at 10:02 PM (Alex's swim journal)
    It seems like forever since I posted here on Wednesday night, right before leaving for the Big Easy. I never actually got to swim down there; I was having too much fun enjoying the weather and touring around when I wasn't in conference sessions.

    I'm pretty sure I would gain weight if I lived there, and here's why...

    Breakfast (actually closer to lunch) on Thursday at Cafe du Monde:
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    Dinner that night was the old stand-by, red beans and rice w/ sausage:
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    After another breakfast of beignets and cafe au lait, I observed a Lenten Friday with catfish po-boy and seafood gumbo:
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    Yesterday's lunch was a drippy muffaletta:
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    I'm glad I had the cole-slaw instead of the fries on the side because the green olives in the sandwich (which are wonderful btw) are pretty salty, but the coolness of the slaw balanced it out perfectly.

    On all of these pictures I only remembered to take out my cell-phone camera after I'd tasted that first bite or so (the food magazines never show the dishes with big chunks missing!). I would be sitting there thinking "Man, this tastes so awesome I should take a picture of it!"

    Oh yeah, and iced tea tastes better in N'awlins.

    I didn't have the heart to step on the scale first thing this afternoon when I finally got back to the Kenosha YMCA; I waited until after a 6K swim (2 hours and 3 mins), sauna, and steam, then with shame in my heart stepped up to face the music (and it wasn't the great street jazz of the Big Easy!): 174.5 ... phew! OK, not so bad... that's "within the margin of error." I normally like to be in the 170-171 range after a long swim, but I've seen a lot of 173-174s the last month or so.

    All in all, a nice break. Now back to the "regimen."

    One last photo for now; it's nice to see that it's spring somewhere in early March... some nice blooms on Jackson Square:
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    Updated March 11th, 2012 at 10:56 PM by mcnair

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  3. Workout 03/11/12:

    by , March 11th, 2012 at 08:31 PM (Maple Syrup with a Side of Chlorine)
    wu: 200 fr/200 bk/200 im drill

    6 x 50 kick on :55
    2 x 100 fr on 1:30
    - 25 dps, 25 fast

    6 x 75 bk on 1:10
    - focus on underwaters
    4 x 50 fr on :45
    - quarters strong

    Two times through:
    4 x 25 on :30
    - odd burst and cruise (6/8)
    - even fast
    -- 1st round: odd free, even back
    -- 2nd round: odd back, even free

    200 easy and out
    (Solo/Rec/2650 yds/45 minutes)
    ------------------------

    Had a nice swim today. My right foot has four blisters from the fin workout yesterday - I've been using the liquid bandage stuff for the sting and the protection. Question for the night: pop the one intact blister or leave it alone?

    With the Harvard meet starting for me this Friday, I am in taper mode. I feel like the 75's are useful and took the idea from That Guy's weekly report. I was able to hold :52's, and was really working the underwaters. I think that is my best opportunity to drop time this weekend.

    I then went into some speed play with the quarter strong and burst swims. So far everything is "feeling good" in the water, so I am looking to beat my seed times for the events this weekend. (I entered my fastest times for all events, save the 200 breast - I'll be happy to get under 3 minutes )

    The results from the Simon's Rock meet have been added to the database, and you can see my swims and splits here. Remember, that 200 free time is actually a 200 Fly

    Updated March 11th, 2012 at 09:17 PM by rxleakem

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    Swim Workouts
  4. I just ordered P90X!

    by , March 11th, 2012 at 08:01 PM (Chowmi's Blog)
    I just ordered P90X!!!

    Somewhat of an impluse buy. I know this came out of nowhere as I have never blogged about it or even hinted that I was ready to bring it on, anywhere, or anyhow.

    I'd like to thank chowsh for convincing me i'm actually only paying "half price" for when I give them to her, heh heh!

    One has to wonder the demographic makeup of people who order this stuff - first, they keep trying to get you to pay in installments. Then to check-out, you have to go through about 7 screens of upsells, which are also on payment plans. Finally, the last screen lets you pay for it all at once, thank you very much, yes, I do have a real job and can afford it on one credit card billing cycle, geez!

    Ok, but I got to thinking I really like doing my made-up circuits at the gym, but am not creative enough to modify my exercises or movements. I'm sort of burned out of swimming so much, and only interested in dabbling in the pool, so it seems a really good time to do something different, though i'm not interested in weight loss or in a non-swimmer's build, but rather in an assortment of excerises that I can do at home that start out at a more advanced level.

    Maybe i'll love all 12 DVDs, but i'm pretty sure I could use enough tips and exercises from all of them to justify the $150 total cost, with SH, etc. Plus, I can regift to chowsh!

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Weight day at Baylor!

    Today I went a bit easier, doing about 30 minutes of various exercises. I got to about 10 minutes, but realized I forgot the order so I couldn't exactly do a 2nd round, so I just kept making other stuff up and lookin' busy. Then I went down to the weight room and had a monopoly of the 10 to 25 lb free weights. I never noticed today that there was a bottom row, except when I thought i'd have to fight some guy as he was heading for the same rack, but then he got them from the bottom row as I quickly grabbed the 17.5 lb pair on the top row! 4 more chin ups today, trying for higher "quality" by not breaststroking with my legs. Gotta get in pre-shape for P90X!

    Bonus swim:

    400 warm up

    4 x 100's no interval
    swim with PFS

    3 x 100's kick no interval
    tummy, sides, back

    50 easy

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I was so worn out from the 2nd gym day that I could not even do another 50 easy at the end. But it does feel really good to loosen and lengthen the muscles after lifting. I also was rushing at the end and extremely aware of the time, the girls went to a movie and were going to be home soon, plus I had to go to the grocery store.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I can't wait to get my P90X DVDs! Of course I am entirely aware that I impluse buy too much; my $125 monofin has not seen much action besides the 3 x 8 x 25's since I bought them. I'm not even sure where I put my nose clips, by the way, now that i'm thinking about it......oh well, they'll probably turn up in the girls playroom at some point, my $1,000 night guard did!
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  5. Sunday, March 11

    by , March 11th, 2012 at 06:24 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Gym:

    30 minutes rehab exercises

    2 x 5 altitude drop from high box + squat jump

    35 minutes foam roller, stretching, yoga


    Swim/SCM/Solo:

    Only time for a quick dip in the hot gym pool, which was happily 84 instead of the usual 86.

    600 various

    7 x 50 fly drills
    50 EZ

    20 x 25 @ whatever
    odds = up tempo free w/fins
    evens = EZ
    50 EZ

    3 x 50 burst dolphin kick + cruise
    50 EZ

    Total: 1750 m

    15 min hottub

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Took yesterday off as per usual while Mr. Fort went on a 24 mile run. He's been struggling with injuries too; I'm amazed he could do it.

    My shoulder/rhomboid area is feeling better. Predictably, I am now having some neck/trap issues. But I have a massage scheduled Tuesday and can hopefully get all the kinks out. This week I'm going to reprise my workouts from the week of Feb. 27 in prep for the Albatross meet.

    I saw that KPN broke my WR in the 100 back SCM at French Nationals. She didn't say what her time was though. And I still have the NR because she is swimming with her French team. But I am swimming it this Saturday.

    Speedo and Jimby have concocted a plan to go to Nationals in an RV. They are attempting to cajole Stud and me into joining this experiential expedition. As a non-college student and insomniac, I have demurred. Jimby is probably pitching a new article topic already ...
    Categories
    Swim Workouts , Yoga
  6. Sunday Swimming with the Guys 03/11/12

    by , March 11th, 2012 at 04:38 PM (Workout Swimmer)
    So it's been a month since the Auburn meet, and I have 2 weeks until the St.Pete meet. Body is tired and ready to rest. Went to Trousdale today for a quick swim with the guys - was the only girl, is what I mean, among 4 very fast men. They tolerate me, as long as I don't swim in their lane, lol.

    350 warm/up
    9 x 100 on 1:30;3 free, 3 IM, 3 50 k/50s (IM's were descend)
    Goal Sets:
    100 all out, followed by 100 easy on 4:00 (total of 4) - Free, IM, IM, Breast -I'm not going to embarrass myself by posting my times, suffice it to say that I was not as fast as I would have liked, even w/toys.
    500; 75 free/25 breast
    3 x 100 P on 1:20 (90%)
    2 x 50 P on :45 P (90%)
    100 easy
    Total: 3050SCY

    Breast felt off today - Fly felt fabulous. Go figure. Arms (elbows) super achy today, but we did what we could. Goal sets are not one of my favorites, since I truly hate sprinting - I much prefer endurance events, since I am a tortoise, and not a hare. But it was probably good for me, lol!

    Updated March 21st, 2012 at 01:50 PM by Celestial

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  7. Workout 03/10/12

    by , March 10th, 2012 at 10:05 PM (Maple Syrup with a Side of Chlorine)
    My trip to Philly yesterday went well, and thanks to tjrpatt I was able to drop in on the masters practice at Ridley High School. You can check out the details here at his blog . A nice variety, even fins (which I have never used before) and some underwaters. It is really a treat to swim in cool water for a change.

    I updated my pool list. Thanks again for your help, Tom!
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  8. March 10, 2012

    Warm-up (1200)
    2 x 200 @ 3:20
    2 x 200 @ 3:15, 50 catchup / 50 swim
    2 x 200 @ 3:10, 25 catchup / 75 swim

    Set I (300 / 1500)
    4 x (3 x 25) @ :45 - underwater SDK w/fins, 1 on left side, 1 on front, 1 on right side

    Set II (2250 / 3750)
    Lifted from Water Rat's March 8th workout.

    6 x 100 @ 1:30 - moderate (1:18 - 1:20)
    5 x 100 @ 1:35 - descend (1:20 -> 1:15)
    4 x 100 @ 1:40 - hold fastest pace from above (all 1:16 & 1:15)
    3 x 100 @ 1:45 - descend, starting from pace above (1:14, 1:13, 1:12)
    2 x 100 easy
    1 x 100 fast (1:09)

    3 x 50 @ :50, :55, :1:00 active recovery

    Set III (1250 / 5000)
    3 x 200 @ 3:00, descend 1 - 3
    8 x 50 @ :45 kick w/fins
    10 x 25 @ :45 no-breather

    * 5000 *

    **************************************************

    I was happy with my times on the third set, I was pleasantly surprised that I was able to descend my times on each set. I didn't think I was going to be able to beat the 1:12 on the last 100, so I was really happy to see the clock when I touched. That is the first time I have broken 1:10 in more than 30 years

    Updated March 10th, 2012 at 10:47 PM by eric.carlson

    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  9. Saturday, 03/10/12

    by , March 10th, 2012 at 07:12 PM (Chowmi's Blog)
    Recap:
    Thurs - off
    Fri- off

    Today, Sat 03/10/12
    Drylands and weights at the gym!
    1. Stations - rope, med ball, burpees, clean & jerks, squats, sit ups, etc - 2 rounds. I would have liked to go 3 full rounds, but I wouldn't have enough time. Each round was about 10 minutes.
    2. Punching bag & kicks
    3. Squats around the track
    4. Various dumbell lifts
    5. Gratuitious 3 dips and 4 pull ups. I don't like our dip station. The arm grips are too far apart, and so it is very uncomfortable on my left shoulder. In college, the bar dip was V-shaped, so you could grip it where it was comfy for your frame.

    Bonus swim!

    400 warm up

    4 x 10 sec hard kick against wall

    100 easy

    4 x 25 assisted - used Speedo B&O fins
    on about 1 min

    100 easy

    2 x 25 on 1:00 fast
    50 easy
    2 x 25 on 1:15 fast
    50 easy

    100 easy

    300 kick
    tummy/sides/back no fins

    3 x push + 6 strokes strong

    100 easy

    The End
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Today I had extra time so made the most of it! I don't usually like to lift and swim, but I had the time today, and probably won't on the weekdays. I'll do a more recovery swim tomorrow, but I want to make the strength training part the first workout priority. I don't usually include commentary on the stretching exercises, but I do about 15 mins most days, usually when I can squeeze it in at home.
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  10. March 9, 2012 - Heart rate set

    Warm-up (1600)
    2 x
    4 x 100 free @ 1:50 1st round, 1:40 2nd round
    4 X 50 drill, IM order
    4 X 50 kick, IM order

    Set I - Heart Rate Test (2000 / 3600)
    8 x
    200 @ 3:45
    50 @ : 1:00
    Swim 200s at 70%, 80%, 90%, 100%, 100%, 90%, 80%, 70% and record times and heart rate
    Take pulse for 10 seconds at 3 time points after each swim:
    * Immediately after touching the wall
    * :30 after touching the wall
    * 1:00 after touching the wall

    Set II (500 / 4100)
    20 x 25 @ :30 no-breather

    Wrap-up (200 / 4300)
    200 easy

    * 4300 *

    **************************************************

    The Heart Rate test set is from Week #8's High Volume Workouts, [ame=http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=20226]Workout #1[/ame].

    It was a fun set and the swim felt decent. I am not sure that I hit the percentages, but I managed to descend to and from the "100%" swims and my heart rate went up and down accordingly. Here are my times and the sums of my heart rate samples:


    * 70% -- 2:43 54
    * 80% -- 2:37 56
    * 90% -- 2:34 56
    * 100% - 2:32 58
    * 100% - 2:31 54
    * 90% -- 2:35 55
    * 80% -- 2:36 48
    * 70% -- 2:39 51


    The article Patrick links to says to create a "pulse plot" of the sum of the pulse counts versus the swimming speed. A little bit of spreadsheet magic and:



    WTF, that doesn't look much like the graph in the Salo book! The best-fit lines through the data sets on that plot fit the points fairly closely, but not on mine... To try to see what happened, I use all of the heart rate samples instead of just the sums:


    * 70% -- 2:43 23 19 14
    * 80% -- 2:37 23 19 14
    * 90% -- 2:34 23 19 15
    * 100% - 2:32 24 20 14
    * 100% - 2:31 23 18 13
    * 90% -- 2:35 23 19 13
    * 80% -- 2:36 22 14 12
    * 70% -- 2:39 22 15 13


    to create a graph and plotted a best-fit line for each sample period:



    From this I see that there was a huge amount of variance in my heart rates taken 30 seconds after a swim. What would cause this?

    Maybe part of the problem is that there isn't much difference in the speed between the "70%" and 100% efforts. Or maybe it is because my fastest heart rate was only 144. Or maybe the problem is that I am not in very good shape yet!

    Several times when I was taking my heart rate, I noticed a significant decrease in rate during the second sample (30 seconds after finishing). It was a strange sensation, the rate suddenly dropped significantly and stayed at the lower rate. Somewhat similar to the RPM change that happens when shifting a car to a higher gear. I don't know that this had anything to do with anything, but it was a strange feeling.

    Do these results say about my condition, or will they only have meaning once after I try this set again?

    Updated March 10th, 2012 at 10:48 PM by eric.carlson

    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  11. Really stepping it up now - and feeling good

    by , March 10th, 2012 at 04:48 PM (Nobody Special)
    * Had a killer workout today. I had to wear fins for most of it but this is by far the most intense work-out in the pool for me since this spine injury hit me back in January. Here is the work out:

    4200 yds total
    100 warm up

    4x400 free (1 m)

    4x300 free (1 m)

    4x200 free (1m)

    4x100 free (1m)

    100 warm down


    *Didn't get to log yesterday's work out. Here it is:

    2400 yds

    100 warm up

    10x100 free

    10x50 back-kick

    5x100 back

    8x25 fly

    100 warm down
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  12. Saturday, 3/10/12

    by , March 10th, 2012 at 02:52 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCY with swim buddy

    This was a hard workout! Especially following the previous 2 days. I'm glad I get a day off tomorrow.



    Warm up (1200)
    500 mixer
    - did free, back, a little breast (it hurt to kick so only 25) and kicking
    4 x 75/1:20 build each
    - all free, around 1:00
    8 x 25 shooters w/fins @ :45
    - alternated back, belly and 360 spin; 1-4 dolphin, 5-8 flutter
    8 x 25 w/fins strong @ :40 - did IM order, (breast with dolphin kick)


    Main set: EN 1 - SP 2 (2000)
    1 x 400/6:30 build
    - free, 5:45
    4 x 100/2:00 strong
    - all free, 1:191
    1 x 300/5:00 build
    - free, 4:20
    4 x 75/2:00 stronger
    - 1-2 free, 59, 57; 3-4 back, 1:04, 1:03
    1 x 200/3:30 build
    - free, 2:55
    4 x 50/2:00 FAST
    - 1-2 free, 35, 33; 3-4 back, 38, 39
    1 x 100/2:00 build
    - free, 1:25
    4x 25 off blocks AFAP
    - I got stopwatch and Jacque and I timed each other
    - #1 - fly at 14.0; #2 - free at 13.25; #3 - back at 16.69, #4 - free at 12.76

    Warm down with some easy swimming + drills
    - did 400; 100 swim, 300 drills

    Total: 3600 yards


    I signed up for the Utah Masters State meet Salt Lake City in 2 weeks, March 23-24. I will do 100 free on Friday night then 200 back, 50 fly and 100 back on Saturday.







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  13. Lactate day kicked my butt! even in the hot water

    by , March 10th, 2012 at 02:23 PM (Mixing it up this year)
    The water at the Y was 86 degrees, too hot for a good workout or so I thought. Still I managed to get a fantastic workout in despite the hot water. Thanks Leslie for putting these together.

    Keep in mind my 200 times have been 2:26 and my 100 times 1:05

    5x100@1:45 free
    500 Free kick w/zoomers every 3rd 25 Fast

    6 x 50 @ 1:30 @ 200 pace held 36's
    2 x 25 @ 1:00 @ 100 pace held 17's
    200 EZ @ 4:00

    4 x 50 @ kick 1:30 @ 200 pace shocker here went 58, 58, 54, 54 I normally can only go under 1 minute once then I lose it
    4 x 25 @ 1:00 @ 100 pace held 16's
    200 EZ @ 4:00

    2 x 50 @ 1:30 @ 200 pace held 35s
    6 x 25 @ 1:15 @ 100 pace went 17,16,16,15,15,16
    200 EZ @ 4:00

    1 x 50 @ kick 1:30 @ 200 pace went 53
    8 x 25 @ 1:30 odds = AFAP evens = EZ went 15,16,16,17 for the fast ones with the last one fly
    200 EZ

    250 drill work with Jen as we went over her free

    Total hot 3200 yards
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  14. 03.10.12 - Saturday workout

    by , March 10th, 2012 at 09:40 AM (Pete's swim blog)
    Swam w/ Dave x 2 & Billy at HSA. Pool temp ~82. Wore Speedo brief. Pool was set up long course today. Nice surprise!

    LCM

    400 Warm up

    8 x 150 (odds Kick/Swim/Kick, evens Swim/Kick/Swim)
    3 x 200 (150 Free/50 IM Order)
    3 x 200 (50 IM Order/100 Free/50 IM Order)
    100 Easy

    3 x 200 Pull
    3 x 200 Reverse IM Order
    6 x 100 (Odds 50 Free/50 IM Order, Evens 50 Easy/50 Fast)

    300 Cool down

    (5000m Total)
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  15. Getting caught up

    by , March 9th, 2012 at 07:07 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    I've been swimming, just been a slacker about posting my workouts. This week has been a strange one. I had planned to do a meet in Boise this weekend but on Wednesday found out that it had been cancelled due to lack of entries. Apparently only 4 people had pre registered and not many more were planning to deck enter. The meet director didn't want to hold a meet for fewer than 30 swimmers and it didn't look like there would be that many. So a week that started out with a taper suddenly had to switch gears and go back to regular training. Am planning to do a meet in Utah in 2 weeks so will do another week of hard training then cut back again so I'm somewhat rested for that one. That will most likely be the last SCY meet of the season for me.
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  16. Friday 02/09/12

    by , March 9th, 2012 at 04:58 PM (Workout Swimmer)
    Skipped yesterday - Jen texted at 4:30am to let me know that she wouldn't be coming & I just thought - fine, I'm tired of getting up at 5am anyway!

    600 Back/Free
    600 pull, speed play by 50's
    300 kick w/zoomers
    8x 100 breast/free on 1:45
    50 easy (down 1/2 way & back)
    12 x 25 on :30 drill/sprint (stop in the middle of the pool, check the clock, bounce off bottom to start the sprint)
    200 easy
    500 pull no paddles
    5 x 100 pull w/paddles on 1:30
    2 x 50 w/zoomers on :45
    100 easy
    Total: 4350LCM

    **I had originally planned on doing doubles twice this week, but I am throwing a bridal shower tomorrow & I was really nervous that I wouldn't get everything done, so I skipped at lunch time - which really sucks cuz it was beautiful outside today. Besides, my arms are dead from kneading a double batch of fondant & swimming probably would have helped work that out, but oh well. Perhaps I'll go on Sunday & get in a quality workout with Jason & Frank. Think I'm the only one entered in the St.Pete meet from Tallahassee
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  17. Friday, March 9

    by , March 9th, 2012 at 04:55 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Gym:

    30 minutes rehab exercises for the various twingey body parts

    30 minutes foam roller/stretch/yoga

    Swim/SCY/Solo:

    600 various

    10 x 50 fly drills
    odds = caterpillar @ 1:10
    evens = single arm @ 1:00
    -- lap swimmer interrupted to ask what stroke I was doing. lol

    10 x 25 DPK back shooters @ :40
    50 EZ

    10 x 25 long breast pullouts @ :40
    50 EZ

    8 x 25 DPK belly shooters @ :40
    50 EZ

    8 x 25 no breath DPS free @ :40
    -- working on better head position
    50 EZ

    Total: 2200

    hottub, 20 min


    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I was supposed to meet up with Speedo today, but he was crammed at work. May have been for the best anyway. I was tired from 2 speed workouts (1 the meet) and a lactate workout since Sunday. Definitely due for a slow recovery workout. And my jabbed shoulders and back were still slightly sore.

    After a couple weeks of waffling, I entered the Albatross Meet on March 17. I entered 100 fly (likely 50 split), 100 back, and 50 free. My thinking is that, after Warrenton, I want to crank out a fast rested (first event) 50 fly. I definitely want to swim one 100, and chose backstroke. It will be good practice in working on turnover for my 100 at Nats, which is a focus event there. 50 free is right at the end and I'll get to swim in the fast all girl heat. I will most likely do a lot of back SDKs off the turn unless I chicken out. But it seems like this would be a good time to experiment with that.

    I'll probably do essentially the same workouts I did the 5 days before the Warrenton meet for this meet. Then, it's cram cram cram before taper time. I am pretty sure I do not need my usual 3 week taper with my revised training regimen. I'm not sure how I'll work around Zones with it only 2 weeks before Nats. I will likely resolve not to care about those times and swim off events and fun relays.

    I have a scratchy throat, which I hope it not a prelude to some spring ailment. I'm hoping it's just the high pollen count. And I feel very bad for Fort Son. He's not getting any better, even feels worse, after taking a training break. He went in for a lyme test today, just to be safe. The freshman boat could be really hurting with him and another recruit down and out.

    Updated March 9th, 2012 at 06:46 PM by The Fortress

    Categories
    Swim Workouts , Yoga
  18. Swim Camp for Masochists: WCM Intensive Training Camp

    The focus of the camp is intensive training. The stroke schools, lectures, breakfasts, video analysis and other entertainment are just strategically timed distractions from the pain and exhaustion being experienced.

    This year there was an extended camp that included Dr G video analysis and lactic clearance test. Since I was flying out to SFO, of course I signed up.

    Pre Camp

    Before registering for camp I emailed Sid, the camp organizer, and asked her if it was ok to miss the last practice of the camp, I could only just catch the last flight out Sunday night if I left at 3pm with the last practices started. She responded with this and no more "You will probably be thankful for the excuse." Smart ass remark? Appears so. Good to know I will fit in.

    Friday

    Friday morning I flew out to SFO, rented a car and drove out to Walnut Creek. No major delays and no traffic so I got to the pool around 1pm and my Dr. G testing started at 3pm. After introducing myself to Kerry and hearing what was going on, I decided to see if I could find the hotel, get checked in and be back at the pool around 2:30pm to warm up. All went as planned.

    For warm up, I swam about 2000 yards. The video taping was running about 10 minutes behind and it was warmer to swim a 50 every couple minutes rather than get out and stand in the cool spring breeze. The testing is at a hard pace but not all out, and I swam free with bouy, free normal, dolphin kick to flutter kick, backstroke with bouy, backstroke and dolphin kick to flutter kick on my back for the testing. I have the video but have not watched it yet nor have I received Dr. G's commentary yet which should show up in my email sometime.

    What I had forgotten about was the lactate test. After being reminded I was hoping it was based on a 100 for time, but as luck would have it, it was a 200 for time. Sigh. This is a good indication of Kerry's mindset, why do a 100 when a 200 will do? On the positive side, I was very warmed up, felt great and expected to go about a 2:02 from the blocks, a couple seconds faster than I went last week. Instead we went from a push to allow two people to easily share a lane and went a 2:03. Very happy with the start to the camp... after the 200 was done.

    The test went like this, swim the 200, wait 3 minutes, get blood taken, cool down 10 minutes, get blood taken, cool down 10 minutes, get blood taken. Dr G recommended this format and from it we should learn how long we should spend cooling down after a race and I think we will also get some feedback on our conditioning.

    It is a little before 5pm and time to get out, get dry for a while and attend "class".

    Swag bags were handed out, introduction of the camp staff was made and Dr. G's began his talk on what elite swimmers are doing right that makes them the best and some of their mistakes as well. I was interested to hear what Dr G had to say, but expected him to be pretty boring. Dr G is actually a great speaker and spent about 15 minutes on each of the four strokes looking at elite level power tests and pointing out the strengths and flaws with each. Interesting stuff like Kitajima bends his legs too much on his dolphin kick actually slowing him down along with not having initiated his stroke so it was technically illegal. A lot of it was talking about generalities between the strokes, minimizing drag and using elite swimmers along with their velocity graphs to make his points. Good information and entertainingly presented, but nothing that I can easily share in a blog.

    Dr G was also supposed to give a 30 minute lecture on nutrition, but he used all his time on the strokes. I was a little surprised he wasn't given more time, but the schedule was packed.

    Next was backstroke and freestyle class. The backstroke class was 30 minutes of lecture mixed with clips from Go Swim with Misty Hyman. Rotate and kick from the core. There was a lot of detail involved in that, and if my focus was backstroke, I would have retained more, but what I came away from the camp learning about my backstroke? I need to practice more. Nothing earth shattering came from the classroom time. Freestyle on the other hand... The lecture was given by the head coach of Walnut Creek's USAS team, Mike, and like all Mike's, he had something interesting to say with a sarcastic delivery. What he said in the class room that has been stuck in my head since is "wrist below elbow, elbow below shoulder." I just changed this in my stroke after a video review in January thinking was causing too much drag with my initial catch, and thus tried to keep my hand and forearm just under the surface for the last month. I am thankful to now know I was being an idiot and creating future shoulder problems with my attempts to fix my stroke, so I can now go back to my old faster more comfortable entry. Mike's other gem for me was about the catch. The elbow is never locked during the freestyle, and if it is locked on the initial entry, the catch will be much delayed and EVF will be impossible. During the class, I just thought that this trick would help me catch earlier by having my elbow bent and arm at the right angle when it came time to catch, but Mike would come back to haunt me later.

    Back in the water... Walnut Creek is now in the low 50s and windy with no sun at 7pm. First was freestyle with coach Cokie. Cokie is great, and it was dark, but as usual I got no criticism of my stroke. I got complimented on my stroke, which I appreciate, but I want a beautiful fast stroke, so I need to hear about the flaws. Cokie kept us moving as much as possible while keeping the comments to just enough to convey meaning. Why? Because it was cold. After 30 minutes and a round of freestyle drills it was time to switch coaches for backstroke. Backstroke was the worst pool session because coach chatty-mac-chatterson recovered everything we went over in the classroom while we froze on the wall. The backstroke drills consisted mainly of drowning while doing chin to shoulder rotation with arms at the side.

    After practice I drove to a Yan's China Bistro place in my swim sweats (very stylish) and order beef chow fun, General Tsao's, white rice and a Sapporo. It was a lot of food and excellent. The General Tsao's was one of the best renditions I have had. Straight to bed afterward, around 10pm (very late for me).

    Saturday

    Woke up around 5am, headed a block down the street to Starbucks for some coffee, guzzled water until 7am when Holiday Inn served breakfast where I proceeded to stuff myself with their frozen cinnamon rolls and instant eggs. Holiday Inn Express coffee is horrible. Undrinkable.

    The morning practices are general conditioning, while the evening practices are distance specific with the stroke specialists lumped in with mid-d. Lanes are organized by speed based on what you claimed the fastest interval you could hold 10x100s on. Most of the fast people lied and put down what they could easily make 10x100s on. After warm up we did a quick adjustment and I ended up leading the second fastest lane.

    The morning workout was great for me because we had Coach Mike who has a rather dry sarcastic sense of humor that I seemed to understand quite easily. We were going into the main set, and I made some comment about someone crushing me speedwise when Mike pops out "Michael don't worry about that, all you need to worry about is making sure your left elbow is actually bent." For the rest of camp I thought about making sure my left elbow was not locked out. It was awesome, I never get critical feedback from the pool deck, and here I get one side comment that will help with two problems on my left side, impingement and a late catch.

    The main set looked more difficult than it was. Everyone in the first 2 lanes were 1:15 or faster swimmers, so our set was
    - 1x25 on 35, 1x50 on 35, 1x25 on 35, 1x100 on 1:10
    - 2x25 on 35, 2x50 on 35, 2x25 on 35, 2x100 on 1:10
    - 3x25 on 35, 3x50 on 35, 3x25 on 35, 3x100 on 1:10
    - 4x25 on 35, 4x50 on 35, 4x25 on 35, 4x100 on 1:10

    There were several people who were worried about not making the set, but no one seemed to have a problem.

    The morning entertainment was when the last main set was assigned 3x200 on 2:45, but I "heard" 3x300 on 3:45 and that is what I did. And everyone let me, coach and lanemates. I make friends everywhere I go incredibly fast.

    After a nice 5k morning it was time for a team breakfast and a break until I needed to be back in the water.

    My video session was scheduled for 1pm, they were running about 10 minutes behind, so I got in about 40 minutes of warm up before the video session. I did the video session in IM order and the video was taken as 35 with a turn from the side then 20 head on. The video reviews would be done Sunday with one of the coaches, you got a dvd of the videos and needed to take notes during the session.

    Cooled down a bit then hopped out to wait for the 1:45 breaststroke school to start.

    Breaststroke is my worst stroke. I knew this before the class, but after the class I was really surprised my stroke was considered legal. There was a lecture in the bleachers that lasted about 20 minutes followed by about 30 minutes in the water. The lecture was fine, the techniques were understandable but they really were meant to improve a decent breaststroke. Once in the water it was very apparent that my breaststroke was remedial at best. Luckily, 3 of the 4 swimmers in my group were in a similar boat and we got new drills to help us not suck and we gave up trying to do the improvement drills altogether. My remedial drill that I need to do for the next couple years to learn to kick is the bellybutton to wall kick drill, followed by the pull buoy kick drill. The belly button to wall kick drill is exactly what it sounds like, you press your belly button to the wall and kick, keeping your knees in the same plane as your torso unless you want bruised knees. My other (tragic) breaststroke problem is that while my knees are dropping they are also spreading apart wider than my feet. There are serious problems with my pull as well, but fixing the kick will help my body position and good body position will be critical in fixing my pull.

    I left breaststroke school feeling like I had no idea what I was doing, but a good idea where to start, so very worthwhile.

    Time for the Sprint workout! It seemed like all the fast people who swam with me in the morning were doing the mid distance or distance workouts, so I was back to not knowing anyone. The sprint workout was not crowded at the fast end of the pool and I ended up splitting a lane with a older guy who I didn't expect much competition with, and I only invited into my lane because it didn't look like any one else was willing to be in the "fastest" lane. Turned out he was quite the sprinter and had no problem keeping up with me into the turn and was the closest to me in speed.

    The main set went like this
    - repeat 4 time
    -- 4x25 on 45 half sprint half easy. Can use blocks on block end (did 4 of 8 possible starts)
    -- 3x50 on 1:00 (#1 ez, #2 200 pace, #3 descend 1-4 across repeats)
    -- 2x100 on 1:45 37.5 sprint 62.5 easy.

    My descends were great: 34, 29, 28, 27.5. My 200 pace not so much: 29, 28, 31, 30. It was as if my 200 pace got me setup for the descends.

    After the workout we were done for the day, so I headed by to the hotel, put dry clothes on and walked down to an Italian place to refuel and made an early night of it. There was an optional camp dinner, but it didn't start until 6:30, 8:30 my time, and I wasn't sure I could stay awake for dinner.

    Between two practices, stroke school, video taping with warm up and cool down it was a 10k day.

    Sunday

    Butterfly school started at 7:30am and Holiday Inn didn't start serving breakfast until 7, so my breakfast was a Venti latte and cinnamon swirl cake at 5am from Starbucks.

    Butterfly school was a broken up into two groups, beginners and intermediates. After breaststroke school, I knew just because I was faster than half the group didn't mean I had a clue what I was doing, so I stayed in the beginner group, wisely. Kerry was giving the lecture that basically covered body position throughout the stroke and even had a template laid out on the floor for us to lay on. I got the highest grade with a B+! Kerry doesn't give As, but he does make a lot of jokes.

    Out in the pool, we worked on drills to help with body position, hands on buoys, repeat the drill without the buoys, 3/3/3 drill were the ones I remembered. Eric Carlson was also in my lane right behind me, but I didn't yet know he was a fairly new usms blogger (until after camp actually). I have a sneaking suspicion that he is a better flyer than I am, and that I would not have gotten a B+ on the actual drills if they had been graded.

    Immediately following school was my last practice, long course.

    The main set was a racing set, so the first 3 lanes were supposed to have people of comparable speed in waves, so the 3 fastest people at camp should each be leading one of the lanes, then the next 3, etc. I took it upon myself to shuffle some people since the lane I was in at the time had 3 of the 5 fastest people in it and in typical qbrain fashion didn't ask anyone, just told one person in the lane I was leaving he was leading, and popped up in another lane that I announced I was leading while the coaches were kinda "uh... ok!". I was lane dictator over 3 lanes for about 30 seconds, I have never held so much power for so long.

    Today's main set appears easy, or at least not too painful. It qualifies as both.

    10x100s LCM on 2:10 (that is the fast interval)
    #1 90 ez/10 sprint
    #2 80 ez/20 sprint
    ...
    #5 100 ez
    #6 50ez/50 sprint
    ...
    #10 10ez/90 sprint

    Around #4 or #6 I went 1:16 and after that it was 1:17s. Increased sprinting distance didn't decrease time as my body slowly ground to a halt. The ez part was supposed to be the same speed across all 3 lanes so the sprint was raced from an even start.

    That finished the water work for me. There was another sprint/mid distance/distance practice in the evening, and I really wonder how most people did that. I was dead after the morning practice.

    Immediately following practice was pancakes. They were awesome. I hate pancakes. I think most people ate three of, I had nine. I think 4,600M of long course makes everything taste better.

    After breakfast was video review. The reviews were one on one with one of the camp coaches, 10-15 minutes covering all 4 strokes. Some good stuff came out of the video reviews. I have some very tangible and probably easy things to work on with my backstroke that should help it quite a bit. I have a fair bit to change on my fly that I doubt will be easy to accomplish unless I start swimming more fly.

    We had an interesting conversation about my breaststroke. We watched my pull out
    Coach Mike: No dolphin kick?
    I laugh at him
    Coach Mike: what is that?
    Me: I was in the remedial breaststroke school yesterday and today you are asking me about the dolphin kick on the breaststroke?
    Coach Mike: You can dolphin kick right? You should should focus on minimizing the amount of breaststroke you actually do.
    Me: Good point I will add a dolphin kick. (abashed)

    Other than that, we agreed that I needed to work on the things we talked about for breaststroke in the school and work on improving my left side of my free.

    Freestyle was pretty much watching my left elbow lockout and discussing how it negatively affected my stroke. I knew I had a late catch on the left side, but until the camp I didn't realize the problem originated with my entry. The other thing we talked about was my kick being too splashy.

    While watching the Dr. G video this morning (Friday) and pausing my kick on valleys of the velocity meter, a few things became obvious that I didn't notice before. My velocity is the slowest at the top of my recovering kick (this should be the power phase of the down kick), my knee is bent almost 90 degrees at the top of my recovery kick and my foot is out of the water to the base of my calf. This results in a really draggy kick and my kick might not actually be helpful when I really kick hard since the harder I kick the bigger it probably gets. The same is true with my dolphin kick, too much bend in the knee causes drag on the upkick.

    After the video were two lectures. The Restwise lecture was a lecture on getting enough rest and some examples of adequate resting for elite athletes compared to inadequate rest. This lecture was very good and the service is something that might be really useful. The service tracks a couple objective measures and several subjective measures and uses the information to judge how rested you are, if you are green you are good to train, if you drop out of green resting should be a strong consideration. The service was $179/year with 25% off with code ITC2012.

    The second lecture was on TRX and the lecturer could best be described as a TRX fanboy. Some of you might have noticed that I am pretty critical of unsubstantiated data, but the problem with this lecture was more the lack of any data at all. It was very much a "look shiny" approach which didn't engage me mentally and at this point I was barely awake physically. I didn't come away with any negatives about TRX but I am also not going to buy one either. It was nice to see the TRX demoed in person, so it wasn't a total waste.

    That was it for me. As everyone headed back into the locker rooms to get ready for the 3pm practice or off to take a break until the 4:45 practice as I headed back to the airport.

    Something I didn't grasp when I signed up for the camp that was critical. The camp is about training, so while I didn't miss too much information by missing the last practice, the camp really wasn't about the information. If I were to repeat the camp, I would make more of an effort to stay through all the workouts. That last workout must have been an interesting one trying to hold it all together.

    Updated March 9th, 2012 at 02:54 PM by qbrain

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  19. FAST FRI Mar 9th, 2012, SCY

    by , March 9th, 2012 at 02:35 PM (Ande's Swimming Blog)
    FAST FRI Mar 9th, 2012, SCY

    Trained trained Wed & Thu

    Taper time has arrived

    Zones: 3 weeks away
    time to get fast strong & skinny

    GOOD NEWS ON THE HEALTH FRONT
    my doc recommended I have another surgery to get margins excised around where my bump was. the doc I met with said he'd like the pathologists at the med school in san antonio to take a look at my specimen.
    They said it was [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nodular_fasciitis"]nodular fasciitis[/ame] (more) and not an atypical fibrous histocytoma. so we just need to observe the location and not have another surgery!

    Chris Coached SCY
    6:30 - 8:00 dove in around 6:50
    got a late start
    swam with Mike Varozza, Jim, Tyler, Kellie, Traci, beside Larry Ned, & Chris

    Warm Up
    missed it


    Main Set

    20 x 50 on 1:30
    odds fast at 200 pace
    evens easy

    did a few easy to get warmed up
    did 100's instead of 50's on the easy

    mixed it up

    assigned 500
    did 5 x 50

    10 x 50 on 1:30
    odds fast at 100 pace
    evens easy



    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

    2012 Meets (I'm considering)

    Mar. 30 & 31, 2012
    South Central Zones, SCY
    South Lake, TX
    Days Till

    Jul. 5 - 8, 2012
    2012 USMS LCM Nationals
    Qwest Center, Omaha, NE
    Order of Events


    Aug 11 & 12, 2012
    South Central LCM Zones
    Palo Alto Pool
    San Antonio, TX
    Categories
    Swim Workouts
  20. Workout 03/09/12:

    by , March 9th, 2012 at 01:11 PM (Maple Syrup with a Side of Chlorine)
    w/u: 200 FR/200 BK/200 IM drill

    10 x 50 kick on :50

    8 x 50 Quarters Strong FR
    4 x 50 Quarters Strong BK

    400 loosen and out
    (solo/Rec/2100 yds/45 min)
    ----------------------------

    Another recovery day for me, which was fine since the Rec was packed this morning. Did my best to get in swims around everyone else, so the times on the QS's were variable - just looking to get a clear line for the AFAP portions.

    Off to Philly to visit Drexel with my daughter tomorrow, but plan on a morning swim with tjrpatt and the folks at the Ridley High pool before the tour starts. Should be fun - and I plan on wearing my square-leg suit (maybe with my drag suit on top).
    Categories
    Swim Workouts