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  1. Friday, 1/13/12

    by , January 14th, 2012 at 11:15 AM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCY with swim buddy

    Warm up (800)
    500 swim choice alt free & back
    4 x 75/1:15 ds4

    Set #1: (400)
    8 x 25/30 "Feel good" strong
    8 x 25/1:00 Sprint Odds w/turn, evens fast finish

    Set #2 (1400)
    1 x 400 w/fins/15sr moderate consistent effort with long streamline dolphin kick off walls
    1 x 200 w/bouy - build
    4 x 100 swim w/fins Alternated free & back
    8 x 50 swim/10sr ds4 build to strong - all free

    Set # 3 (300)
    5 - 10 min kick (25 dolphin - 25 flutter)
    - did 200 w/board and snorkel, then 100 on back

    Total: 2900 yards
  2. Sat with the team

    Large group this morning. I almost slept through my alarm which is odd because I am a morning person.

    10 min choice

    6 x 75 descend 1-3,4-6
    --1-3 went back @ 50
    --4-6 went breast @ 60

    8 x 75 with buoy r/5
    --odds free
    --evens 25 fly/50 back

    4 x 500 broken
    --200 with bouy r/10
    --150 swim build r/10
    --100 sprint r/10
    --50 EZ r/10 and repeat

    15 min. of turn work

    3 x 50 off the blocks
    --25 sprint/25 cruise

    100 w/d and hot tub


    I put forth a good effort but wasn't extremely fast. I'll take it. It has been a long week.
  3. 01.14.12 - Saturday workout

    by , January 14th, 2012 at 09:20 AM (Pete's swim blog)
    Swam at the Huntsville Nat with Dave, Dave, Dave, Bob, Bob, Sally and a couple others. Pool temp ~82. Wore a drag suit over my Nike jammer for most of the workout. Donating blood yesterday had me a little weak today. Had some good swims but I couldn't keep it up through the whole workout like I usually can.


    500 Warm up
    300 Kick w/ fins
    100 Free

    300 Pull (3:20)
    500 (100 Fly/100 Free/100 Back/ 100 Free/ 100 Breast)

    4 x 100 Kick
    200 Free
    4 x 100 - 1:50 (25 Fly/25 Bk x 2)
    200 Free
    4 x 50 Free - :50 Fast (32s)

    4 x 100 Pull - 1:30 Breate Right down, Left back
    200 IM (Dropped drag suit)
    4 x 100 - 1:50 (25 Br/25 fr x 2)
    200 IM
    4 x 50 IM Order

    500 Cool down

    (5000 Total)
    Swim Workouts
  4. 12 Days of, 19 Days After

    Today I finally did the 12 Days of Christmas workout that I wrote in early December. A couple of friends from NYC are visiting me here, and we headed over to the pool midday. It was about 40 degrees when we set out, but clear and very sunny, and the pool felt delightful. Nice to have swim buddies again!

    Here’s what I did:

    700 warmup

    Twelve Days of Christmas Workout

    300 warmdown

    One of my workout partners was swim tourist extraordinaire Hannah, who has started her own blog about her 40-pools-in-2012 project. Today was pool number 4 for her, so she’s off to a good start!

    Before our workout we went stopped by one of the local attractions here—the Museum of Man in the Sea. I pass it every time I drive to the pool—it’s a shed surrounded by various bathyspheres and submersibles and subs and such—and I’ve always been curious. It’s mostly a museum about diving technologies.

    The exhibits on the early history of diving weren’t that impressive—they were basically dioramas featuring lots of Ken dolls—but once we got to the late nineteenth- and twentieth-century artifacts it got more interesting. There was an impressive array of diving helmets through the ages,

    various diving suits and rebreathers, and submarines—lots of submarines! And Sealab!

    A lot of the underwater contraptions came via the local Navy Special Systems Center in Panama City. My faves were the tiny submarines and swimmer transport vehicles, although actually being in them didn’t look like much fun. This contraption can put divers under in a pressurized environment before they actually descend—kind of a human pressure cooker:

    There was also a cool board of knots:

    Being a man in the sea apparently requires lots of knots.

    As for our own women-in-the-sea experiences, those will have to wait a day or two. Yesterday afternoon the beach was littered with man-o-wars—many of them no bigger than a fingernail, but some larger ones too. The unusually strong winds the previous couple of days must have blown them inland. I usually wait a day or two until after they disappear from the beach before venturing in again, so a swim in the gulf will have to wait. But there’s still hope for some ow swimming tomorrow—we’re travelling up to check out a spring-fed swimming locale. I’ll report back once we’ve been!
  5. Winter returns to WI

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 07:09 PM (Alex's swim journal)
    Nothing like shoveling a few inches of snow--the wet, heavy kind--to loosen up the ol' back and shoulders! [*Sarcasm Alert*]

    Winter returned to Wisconsin yesterday and, man, it doesn't take much to keep the folks away from the gym. The Kenosha Y seemed nearly deserted yesterday. I was, for almost an hour, the only person in the 8-lane pool. "Hello, hello, helloooo... echo, echo, echooo." Of course, it was the last hour of the day and the pace clock was broken. I decided just to alternate gliding 100s with easy swim 100s and finished 3150 yards in about 55 minutes. I was happy to get there at all; the roads were awfully slippery with new snow and ice.

    Today the roads were better and I had to go in for an early afternoon swim before my son's basketball practice. Just 2000 yards easy swimming (35:50--pace clock working again!). So, a couple of recovery days; tomorrow I'd like to get in a 6000-yard continuous swim.

    I'm a little concerned that my left shoulder is achy today... yesterday it was not as bad (feeling like I expect it should after three 3000-4000-yard days in a row). I thought an easy swim today might give it enough rest, but I have a feeling it's the accumulation of swimming over the week + the snow-shoveling today; basketball with the sixth-graders doesn't help. I'm going to see how it holds up tomorrow in the first couple of thousand. I hit 20 miles for the year today and was still in GTD top-ten for Men 40-44 (barely!).

    Updated January 13th, 2012 at 08:52 PM by mcnair

  6. Back Half Set, Jan. 13

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 05:28 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up/Transition:

    600 various
    6 x 50 fly drills
    10 x 25 shooters
    3 x 50 burst + cruise @ 1:15
    50 EZ

    Back Half Lactate Set:

    6 x broken 125s w/fins @ 5:00

    6 x through:
    50 @ :45 @ 80-85%
    50 @ :45 @ 90%
    25 @ 100 %
    125 EZ

    1 = breast, 32/31/14
    2 = breast, 29/30/14
    (whoops, thought I took it took easy on #1 and ended up out way too fast on the first 50 of #2.)
    3 = free, 26/25/11
    4 = fly, 27 high, 26, 11
    5 = 100 IM + 25 flutter kick w/board, 27 high, 28, 11
    6 = 100 IM + 25 flutter kick w/board, 27 low, 29, 12

    200 EZ

    Total: 3000


    I wasn't sure I had a lactate set in me today, but I decided to give it a go after warm up. I was tired after yesterday's uncharacteristically hard speed workout with almost 1200 AFAP or hard efforts. And my calves were tight and crampy despite some foam rolling last night. But I survived and put in a good effort. I believe I've seen Jim Rude post this set. So happy that I have a monthly massage tomorrow! Hoping to watch some of the Grand Prix on line. But have a HS swim meet that will conflict.

    I just dropped Mr. Fort and Lil Fort at the airport for their annual ski trip. I foresee some sleep and lazing about. I may try out Down Dog this weekend too:

    Updated January 13th, 2012 at 06:00 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  7. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 AM Workout -01/16/12

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 02:33 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 a.m. Workout)
    WARM UP:
    1 X 250 4:45 4:15
    1 X 150 2:45 2:30
    3 X 100 2:00 1:45
    Two rounds. Round 1 intervals left, 2 right.

    3 X 100 kick 2:30
    6 X 50 kick 1:15
    1 X 100 swim -

    6 X 50 1:15
    1 X 100 stroke 2:00
    1 X 100 easy 2:30
    Three rounds.
    50's: 2 each/fly, back, breast.
    100 stroke: round 1 fly, 2 back, 3 breast
    100 easy is freestyle

    12 X 100 free
    Alternate 1:50 1:40 1:30

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  8. January 13, 2012

    Warm-up (1200)
    2 x [ 300 free, 200 kick, 100 drill ]

    Kick Set #1 (800 set/ 2000 total)
    8 x 100 @ 1:40, kick w/fins, odd dolphin, even flutter

    Main Set #1 (1800 set/ 3800 total)
    Broken 1650 “Davis Mile”
    • 11 laps @ rest 20
    • 10 laps @ rest 20
    • 9 laps @ rest 20
    • 8 laps @ rest 15
    • 7 laps @ rest 15
    • 6 laps @ rest 15
    • 5 laps @ rest 15
    • 4 laps @ rest 10
    • 3 laps @ rest 10
    • 2 laps @ rest 10
    • 1 lap

    150 easy

    Main Set #2 (600 set/ 4400 total)
    2 x
    • 1 x 25 @ :30 fly
    • 1 x 50 @ :50 back
    • 1 x 75 @ 1:25 breast
    • 1 x 100 @ 1:30 free
    • 50 easy

    Wrap-up (300 set / 4700 total)
    4x50 @ 1:00 hypoxic (breaths per 25: #1 0+0, #2 1+1, #3 0+1, #4 0+1)
    100 easy

    *4700 total*


    Felt much better in the water than I did on Wednesday, made it through the whole workout without having to stop for leg cramps. Had a few twinges during the 1650 but managed to get rid of them by flexing my ankle and calf while swimming. Had one bad one during the first 50 back, but it was near the end and I was able to stretch it out before the 75 breast.

    Updated January 13th, 2012 at 06:00 PM by eric.carlson (fixed formatting)

  9. 01.13.12 - Friday workout

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 12:24 PM (Pete's swim blog)
    Today was my apheresis donation day. They tell me they are just removing plasma, platelets and other white blood cell related stuff. In return, I get saline (or tap water... who knows?) mixed with my red blood cells injected back into my veins. Rumor has it the milky white substance they extract from me goes for about $1000/bag on the medical market. I'm glad someone can make some money off of me. My nurse today, Sandy, has a badge number of 666. Apparently, it is not a joke. The Red Cross actually issued her that number. She always says "I'm sorrry" after sticking you. She's not sorry... she meant to stick something sharp in my arm! Besides, her badge number is 666. Deep down I know she enjoys seeing my face wince in pain. Sandy is a really nice person despite her badge number... as are all the nurses they employ. It would be hard for them to keep people coming back if they weren't.

    Prior to my fun at the Red Cross this morning, I worked out with Dave, Dave and Roger. Pool temp was 85.5. At least they weren't dumping hot water into the pool anymore... it was just luke-warm. Wore a drag suit for everything but the timed 400 IM.


    450 Warm up

    400 Free - 6:00 (5:05)
    300 - 5:15 (50 Kick/50 Swim x 3)
    200 IM - 3:15 (100 IM/100 Free)
    100 Fly - 1:30 (1:25 Made it... with a drag suit!)
    100 Free - 1:30
    200 IM - 3:15 (100 IM/100 Free)
    300 - 5:15 (50 Kick/50 Swim x 3)
    400 IM Timed (5:28 - very close to my meet time)
    100 Easy

    4 x 50 - :45 IM Order
    4 x 50 Kick - 1:00
    4 x 50 - :45 IM Order
    4 x 50 Kick - 1:00
    4 x 50 - :45 IM Order
    100 Easy

    25 Pull
    3 Times through
    * 4 x 50 Pull - :45 Easy/Hard
    * 200 Medley Relay - 3:00
    Practiced some relay stuff today. This was good because my timing was way off and my dives were fairly poor on the first two . Third one was much better. Also allowed us to cool off a bit.

    125 Cool down

    (4550 Total)
    Swim Workouts
  10. Fort on Friday 1/13/12

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 11:14 AM (The Labours of SwimStud)
    300 choice

    5 x 100 @ 2:00
    25 left arm, 25 right arm, 25 scull, 25 swim

    Main Sets:

    5 x (4 x 25) shooters w/fins or MF @ :35-:40
    1-5 = on back
    6-10 = on belly
    11-15 = 2 left side, 3 right side
    16-20 = 360 shooter
    I was confused by this but I did the shooters as 5 x (4x25) 1 Back, 2 Front, 3 Right, 4 Left, 5 360.

    8 x 25 streamline glide drill, no fins @ :45

    8 x 25 long breaststroke pullouts, then cruise to wall @ :45
    50 EZ

    2 x through:

    3 x 100 smooth free, no breathing in or out of turns @ 1:45
    4 x 25 scull + 25 kick
    4 x 50 stroke drill
    8 x 25 no breath DPS free @ :40

    100 EZ

    Total: 3650

    I only made it 3450 but perhaps I misread the workout.
  11. Friday, January 13, 2012 5:30am

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 10:44 AM (Fast Food Makes for Fast Swimming!)
    I got to the pool early, but today I just wasn't feeling too ambitious to get myself moving. Everyone was asking about my son and what new stuff was happening. He'll be leaving the hospital here via ambulance this morning around 10:00am headed to Seattle Children's Hospital, where hopefully they can get to the bottom of this whole seizure disorder. He had 3 small "wake-up" seizures last night, which were nothing more than a jerking awake suddenly for a couple seconds, then a brief moment of crying, and that was it...back to sleep. They were about 2 hours apart, but something is still happening.

    As for swimming, I had the plan of doing part/most of PWBs "Bit O' Speed" workout from his weeks workout listing, but after I got into it, I just couldn't get myself going again. Probably a lot of stuff going on at the moment in my head.

    200 Free
    100 Kick w/ Board
    100 Scull w/ paddle/buoy (this is because I was talking with person in the next lane over about my son rather than doing the normal pull part of my w/up.
    200 Free Pull

    PWB set: (My "Base" is 1:15/100)
    3 x 200 Free Fast @ (Base - :05) 2:20 (went 2:09/2:13/2:14)
    2 x 175 Free Pull EZ @ 2:40 (added :20 to above interval)
    1 x 150 Free @ (Base - :05) 1:45 (went 1:43)
    The set was supposed to have 4 of these 150s, and continue with more fun pain, but I wasn't feeling it, and decided to "pull the plug". PWB did say we could "modify as necessary".

    10 x 50 Kick w/ board EZ @ 1:00

    w/ others in lane now (prior was solo)

    200 Free stretch out

    3 x 200 Free Pull @ :30 rest from last person (easy/med/all-out)
    went 2:35/2:22/1:59 - had to do some interesting acrobatics during the last 200 to get around some lap traffic.

    No cool down.

    3000 Yards

    On Saturday maybe I'll get a chance to swim with That Guy, provided I get a chance to break away from the hospital scene for a little bit. I'll try to teach him how to do some shorter rest fly sets for better 200 Fly training!!
  12. Friday the 13th! (of Jan 2012)

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 07:54 AM (Workout Swimmer)
    So today must be the truly unlucky day. My elbows are killing me. Luckily, I have 5 enforced days of rest while we drive up to Tenn/Kentucky this weekend.
    How can I go 100's on the 1:30 holding close to 1:20 7 days ago, and today my fastest was 1:23 on the 1:40 interval? Being old sucks. I want my young, healthy, pain free body back!!!

    500 back/free
    500 pull speed play by 50's
    400 kick, 75 fast 25 easy
    3 x 200 stroke/free w/30 sec rest between each
    50 easy
    9 x 100 on 1:40, descending in groups of three AND trying to negative split
    100 easy
    4 x 4 cycle speed play 25's
    3 times thru: 200 pull (no paddles) 100 swim, 100 kick
    100 cool down
    Total: 4350 LCM
  13. Thurs Jan 12, 2012

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 07:50 AM (Workout Swimmer)
    I remember when I was a kid, Thursday the 12th was considered "Bad Luck" (as compared to Friday the 13th?) But didn't seem like such a bad day today!

    900 (100 free, 25 back, 25 breast, repeat)
    800 (4 x 200, alt IM twitch & free)
    700 (alt 75 swim & 75 kick)
    600 (6 x 100 @ 1:20 pull)
    500 (every 4th off stroke)
    400 ( 8 x 50 @ :45)
    300 (12 x 25 fly on :30 w/zoomers)
    200 breast/free by 50's
    100 IM no fly
    Total: 4500

    Annie came & joined me this morning until the 600, and then she had to go - I was glad for the company, as I was at Meyers Park (no ATAC AM practices on T&Th until June, now) basically by myself. I enjoy swimming over there in the early mornings when I'm "alone" - JoAnne M is often there, the lights are all on, so it doesn't seem like the middle of the night, and the one lifeguard, Jackie, is very friendly and cheerful. Also the water is the perfect temp - a little cool when you first jump in, but then perfect for working out and working hard without getting too hot.
    Happy that I am "on pace" for part of my goals for the week. Goal one: 6 x 100 @ 1:20 holding under 1:10 (did NOT do this, did an 08, 12, 15, 15, 15, 15) and 12 x 25 fly - actually did this quite well, and felt strong the whole way through - I took an extra 30 sec rest after 6 (because I could, silly!) and I almost just did a 100 warm down and got out, cause I was well after 7am at that point, but I remembered that it never takes me as long to get ready for work as I plan for, and after all, how long would another 200 take, anyways? So I did the whole thing. Would've been better if I could've started at 5:30 and done another 1000 or so, but I'm sure Terry will have us get that much in tomorrow morning! And then after morning workout, it's off to Clarksville, TN to see Eric!

    Updated January 21st, 2012 at 04:12 PM by Celestial

  14. Easy premeet day

    by , January 13th, 2012 at 07:13 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    After a very frustrating day at work and yes I actually let out a chilling scream in the afternoon. I hate when people don't listen, but amazingly after that release the idiots started listening.

    500 free
    500 free kick w/fins every 3rd fast
    8x25@:45 shooters with fins
    5x100@2:00 fly w/fins 25 rt arm/25 lt arm/25 kick/25 swim
    8x25@:45 kick w/snorkle build
    100 EZ
    6x50 from dive 20 yrd sprint

    Total 2500 yards
  15. Workout 1/12/12: Show us the way before it's too late

    by , January 12th, 2012 at 07:35 PM (Maple Syrup with a Side of Chlorine)
    Solo at Rec (scy)

    200 FR/200 BK/200 IM drill
    4 x 50 kick on :60

    Main set:
    4 x 50 FR on :45
    4 x 100 FR Pull with buoy on 1:20
    3 x 50 IMO (no free) on :45
    3 x 100 FR Pull with buoy on 1:20
    2 x 50 IMO (no BR/FR) on :45
    2 x 100 FR Pull with buoy on 1:20
    1 x 50 Fly :45
    1 x 100 FR Pull with buoy on 1:20 (went 1:06)

    50 ez
    100 IM for time (1:11.75)

    1 Noah's Ark Pull with buoy

    50 ez
    100 IM for time (1:12.46)

    200 various w/d
    (3300 yds, 60 min)

    I am happy to report that we, too, received some snow last night into this morning. I can't really call it snow, more of a one inch layer of slush all around as the precipitation turned from freezing rain to sleet to snow. Two hour school delay this morning, which I was happy with (I took the extra sleep). Had a filling at the dentist this afternoon before gathering a child from school from school - he is a lap swimmer in the morning, and I went to high school with his sons.

    My shoulders are feeling a bit tight today in the water, probably from practice yesterday with the kids (but maybe a tad from shoveling). I wanted to try [ame=""]Fort's Lactate Production Dropdown Super Set[/ame] but was already to tired, plus I needed to get in some 100 IM's (just 97 more for the year). I'll keep that one for next week.

    Water was warm yet again (they have settled on high 84, low 85 for the winter), so that didn't help to perk me up too much. I have done this workout in the past (save the IM's), and tightened up the intervals to base+5 on the 50's and base+0 on the pulling 100's (held them all around 1:08).

    Not much more to report from the water. Looks like the meet next weekend might not happen if more people don't sign up (I am really just doing 50's so it is not a big deal). I am going to make a push with our local workout group to hit the Simon's Rock meet in early March - it is ~90 minute drive and recognized, so the non-USMS (all but 3 of us) folks can try out a real meet - I am thinking I can get 4 or 5 more people interested to try it.

    Have a great weekend everyone.
    Swim Workouts
  16. Thursday, January 12, 2012 5:00am

    by , January 12th, 2012 at 06:59 PM (Fast Food Makes for Fast Swimming!)
    I got this set from Tall Paul's workout list in the forums. AZTIMM also did the same set the other day, since he swim's with Paul's group.


    2 x 100 Free @ 1:30 warmup
    2 x 50 Free @ :50 warmup
    1 x 600 Free Pull cruise @ 8:00 (went 7:10)
    1 x 100 Kick w/ board @ 2:00
    :20 rest to the TOP

    2 x 100 Free @ 1:20 (1:07s)
    2 x 50 Free @ :50
    1 x 500 Free Pull "work it" @ 6:00 (went 5:28)
    1 x 100 Kick w/ board @ 2:00
    :40 rest to the TOP

    2 x 100 Free @ 1:15 (1:06s)
    2 x 50 Free @ :45
    1 x 400 Free Pull "work it" @ 5:00 (went 4:22)
    1 x 100 Kick w/ board @ 2:00
    1:00 rest to TOP

    2 x 100 Free @ 1:10 (1:06s)
    2 x 50 Free @ :45
    1 x 300 IM FAST @ 4:00 (went 3:41) Very nice!
    1 x 200 Kick w/ board EZ

    3400 Yards

    I really enjoyed this set. It gives the right amount of pain with pleasure.


    As far as my son...we're still in the hospital. He was fine all day long, and then had two more seizures this afternoon around 2:45-3:00, just of the "small" variety. Not too bad, and he's waking up and being more normal afterwards as well which is a plus. The doctor will be coming over after the clinic we'll just have to wait and see what happens. I wonder if I can postpone my house payment this month since I'm not even living in my house!!
  17. Mixed Speed Play, Thursday, Jan. 12

    by , January 12th, 2012 at 04:08 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up/Transition:

    600 various
    6 x 50 fly drills
    6 x 25 shooters w/fins @ :35
    6 x 50 free w/paddles @ :50
    50 EZ

    Speed/Power Sets:

    6 x 25: power kick to 15 meter on belly + over kick free, no breath, to wall @ 1:00
    50 EZ

    6 x 25: 15 m "floating" shooter @ 1:00-1:15
    -- float at 15 meter mark, explode into fast shooter to wall, cruise back to 15 m mark
    100 EZ

    6 x (25 "barge" kick w/fins + 50 EZ)
    -- "barge" kick = hold kick board horizontally with hands and keep underwater and kick
    50 EZ

    6 x 25 free w/parachute & paddles @ 1:15
    50 EZ

    4 x 25 back shooter w/parachute & fins @ 1:25
    -- parachute broke on #5 . tried to tie it, but it wouldn't hold
    50 EZ

    6 x (25 AFAP free w/fins + 75 EZ) @ 3:00
    -- went low to mid 10s
    -- might have done 7, lost track as I was wondering if the noodler in my lane was ever going to leave so I could do fast 50s
    50 EZ

    2 x (50 AFAP fly w/fins + 150 EZ)
    -- went 23 lows
    50 EZ

    Total: 3800


    Did a longish speed workout today. Had a good chunk of time and took plenty of rest. The mix of different things made it very fun!

    Read a couple interesting USAS links by email:

    The Secret to a Good Kick, which has a video comparing flutter kicks:

    Best Barbell Exercise:

    I also read this snippet about working on your SDK. So true!

    "We are frequently asked for dolphin kick training tips and ideas to improve under waters. We have found that the keys to a strong dolphin kick are core and leg strength, ankle flexibility, and executing quick, snappy kicks that finish all the way through the toes. Based on these keys, we recommend using both vertical kicking and a monofin to improve dolphin kicking.
    Doing sets with a monofin will not only build strength in the appropriate core and leg muscles needed for dolphin kick, but it will also improve ankle flexibility. The key with using a monofin is to start slow and build up to larger sets as the swimmer becomes stronger.

    Sample Monofin Set:
    8 x 25 @ 1:30 all out kick for time"
    Swim Workouts
  18. Sunny morning swim

    I had a nice solo workout this morning. It was a warm clear morning, and I got to watch the sun rise and the moon set—it was lovely. The water temp was a degree or two cooler than usual—they like to keep it around 80-82 here in the winter—so I thought it was just perfect.. (I suspect the pool slept without its covers overnight—it was extremely windy yesterday, which makes putting them on a challenge for the guards—and that made the water temp drop a bit.)

    Here’s what I did:

    1200 lcm warmup (400s, 200k, 200p, 4 x 100 d/s RIM)

    3 x 100 FR desc. @ 1:50 [1:45, 1:35, 1:30]
    3 x 100 FR/BK halfsies, desc., @ 2:05 [1:50, 1:41, 1:33]
    3 x 100 IM desc @ 2:15 [1:45, 1:42, 1:35]

    100 easy

    6 x 100 FR practicing [ame=""]chaos’s 2:3 drill [/ame]with my tempo trainer
    400 straight, done as 150fr / 50bk / 50br / 150fr (free done moderate-fast with higher-than-usual cadence)

    4 x 100 (50 kick / 50 swim with 6-beat kick) @ 2:15

    400 play + warmdown

    I was glad to finally add some IM back into my workout—just a little today, but I hope I can gradually increase it. I’m enjoying playing with my stroke cadence with the tempo trainer.

    Today a couple of friends arrive for the weekend—looking forward to doing some fun workouts with them during their stay, plus perhaps exploring a new swim venue! It’s turning cloudy and cold just in time for their arrival, but I think we’ll have some better weather over the next few days!
  19. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 AM Workout -01/13/12

    by , January 12th, 2012 at 01:51 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 a.m. Workout)
    WARM UP:
    3 X 150 2:30 2:15
    3 X 100 1:40 1:30
    Two rounds. Round 1 intervals left, 2 right.

    1 x 200 kick 4:30
    2 X 100 kick 2:15
    8 x 25 sprint kick :45
    1 X 100 swim

    3 X 100 IM 1:40
    4 X 50-1 of each- 1:00
    8 X 25 fast-2 of each- :40
    Two rounds with a break between rounds.

    1 X 1000
    With fins(it's been a tough week).
    Descend by 200's

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  20. "stretching beyond..."

    by , January 12th, 2012 at 01:31 PM (Alex's swim journal)
    "I saw--color of gold as it reflects
    the sun--a ladder gleaming in the sky,
    stretching beyond the reaches of my sight"
    (Paradiso XXI, lines 28-30)

    I love these lines in Mark Musa's translation (Penguin's Portable Dante--not portable enough to fit in the swimsuit btw). Dante, the pilgrim, is so far into the heavens already, yet this ladder extends so much farther above him that he cannot see the top. A couple of nice versions of this can be seen on Hollander's Princeton Dante Project website, such as this painting by Amos Nattini:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    As we learn from St. Benedict in canto XXII a little later, this is Jacob's ladder:

    "It was the patriarch Jacob who saw
    our ladder stretch to touch the final height,
    the time he dreamed of it so thronged with angels"

    We're always trying to reach that "final height" ("la superna parte" in the original, the "supernal part"). And it often seems beyond reach. Like the beginning of a "ladder" workout. In August I started working in these massive ladder workouts, starting at the top, then working my way to the bottom and back again (1000, 500, 400, 300, 200, 100, 50, 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 1000), trying to hold the same pace, maybe :10-:15 rests after each rep. It was a lot of yardage. Getting "down" the ladder was a piece of cake, but headed back up again? Phew, took a lot of mental discipline.

    Yesterday's 3Km (3300 SCY) incorporated a ladder of sorts... using different distances and different paces (as most folk's workouts). As my distances got shorter I tried to make my pace faster. So the ladder was working in both directions at once: distances easier (down), but paces harder (up). I did 300 yards in warm-up and cool-down, so the main workout was 3 twenty-minute, 1000-yard segments:

    5 x 200 on 4:00 (3:07-3:10)
    10 x 100 on 2:00 (1:26-1:30)
    20 x 50 on 1:00 (:40-:44)

    My goal at the start was to hold :48/50 on the 200s, :45 on the 100s, and :42 on the 50s. The theory is that I'm tricking my body into swimming faster and faster as the distances add up, rather than slowing the pace as fatigue sets in over the course of the sets. I was pretty close to attaining this "height"--though I had my doubts as I began my "final" 1000 and was staring into the faces of 20 reps!

    My average pace on the 200s was closer to :47 (though, my pace was all over the place over the course of any given 200--one 50 at :41, another at :51--I'm still not a very good judge of my own pacing). I was averaging :44 pace on the 100s... only two reps of the last three were at 1:30. And my 50s probably averaged :43--there were some :41-:42s, but also some :44s.

    As I headed to the sauna afterward, I was thinking about my years of running experience and how this is beginning to translate in my swimming. I guess developing different paces in swimming is similar... my gliding warm-ups with :58 50s are like brisk walks, the :53 all-day pace is like a trot or jog, the :48-:38 range represents my "running" speeds at 70-90%.

    Like Jacob, or eventually Dante, we get to the top of every set. Tomorrow's ladder will reach even higher, though, so we persevere in each workout... even when that ladder is "stretching beyond the reaches" of our sight!