Storms again yesterday sabotaged practice. Did really well today. I don't pull but I made the first two 300's anyway. After the second one, I was going to put fins on since I was getting tired. Someone needed my lane so I swam behing Dave on the third one and made 3:35... no fins! Finished the last two at around 3:38.
400 Warm up
5 times through
* 300 Pull - 3:45
* 50 Easy - 1:15
* 100 IM Kick - 2:00
* 100 Stroke - 1:30
* 50 Easy - 1:00
* 100 IM Kick - 2:00
200 Cool Down
Yes the yardage is down but I am mixing it up more and reinvigorating my workouts. The biggest challenge is letting go of the mega yardage mentality.
....[5x100@:05Rest IM pull to kick
20x25@:40 Fly w/paddles
8x50@:55 Back every 3rd FAST
6x50@1:00 Breast pull w/fins
200 Free EASY
Total 3000 yards
16 x 50 @ :55-1:00
4 of each stroke, drill fly
9 x 75 back kick w/fins @ 1:15
1-3 shooter on 3rd length
4-6 shooter on 2nd length
7-9 shooter on 3rd length
10 x jumps (200)
odds = broad jump off pool + squat jump off bottom
evens = grab start off side
6 x 50
25 EZ speed fly or belly shooter w/fins @ 100 pace + 25 EZ (felt dreadful)
Did not want to attempt speed work, but forced myself.
2 x (50 fast w/fins + 100 EZ) @ 3:00
breast, :31 (not bad)
free, high 24 (bad turn)
4 x (25 fast free /fins + 25 EZ)
Bikram Yoga, 90 minutes
Didn't feel as dreadful as I usually do after a layoff. Still can't do standing head to knee for very long without a more consistent practice.
I was lacking all motivation this morning. This seems to be a common occurrence when I get thrown out of my usual routine. David Guthrie suggested I start my 5 week taper. (Yes, he really does that.) Eney Jones suggested I just go robotic for a couple days. My very first masters coach told me to "do it OR ELSE." I opted for a combo of the last two. I actually feel better after the 2 workouts.
I haven't had time to blog since spring break! By the time my rear hits the seat at night I've been falling asleep with laptop in bed! I think driving non-stop to and back home from Tamp/St. Pete (15 hours each way) took its toll on me. I have been swimming pretty much daily and for that I am pleased!
Here's tonight's workout:
Solo @ Monon
**400 IM warm-up( in 100 IM form non-stop and stretchy)
**500 Free moderate
4 X 125 @ 2:15 interval
**400 Free pull
4 X 100 @ 1:45 interval
**300 Free hard
4 X 75 free @ 1:20 interval
**200 Free easy
4 X 50 @ 1:00 interval
**100 Free easy
4 X 25 free hard @ :30 interval
**4 X 25 Perfect Fly @ :40 interval
I have a new "Student Teacher" who was a pitcher in College. I am picking his brain for good shoulder and rotator cuff exercises. I'll post anything news-worthy he shares!
I just had my first barefoot run. Date night got canceled, so I decided to try out what I learned in "Born to Run."
I grabbed a pair of ballet flat slippers and went to the freshly paved (and clean after the rain) rail trail to trot along the .6 mile stretch to see how it felt.
Usually when I run I have to stop because of knee pain, hip pain, or ankle pain. Or because I can't breathe.
Running the first half in slippers, I concentrated on keeping my torso smooth, having a short and quick cadence, and not flipping stepping on anything! The only thing that hurt were my lungs, so I slowed down to walk for bits. When I got to the end of the trail, I started to feel like my toes were a little constricted in the slippers. And knowing that I passed no broken glass or stones or anything really nasty, I took them off to run back to the car barefoot.
The second half felt fantastic on my joints! That is, there was none of that familiar knee pain that always sets in after 10 minutes. However, my legs were burning a little, they're still sore from the squats on Monday night. I was going very, very slowly to pay attention to the ground in front of me, and I wonder if that was keeping me from having proper form. The wet pavement felt like running on a pumice stone, which started out feeling like massage to scratching and then burning by the last few yards. That's also about the time that my calves tightened up and for the first time I felt like stopping because of pain other than my breathing.
I got home, washed my feet, gave thanks for the handy inhaler, and massaged my calves. Time will tell if I wake up with new sore parts, but the time I spent on the path was exhilarating, and I would do it again, or possibly invest in a pair of shoes that offer a barefoot feeling and protection. I don't think these ballet slippers will last more than a few outings.
And tomorrow, it's back to the swimming!
(Teaser shots to whet the appetite for more. With thanks to Allison Simpson Moore, my photographic Boswell at the recent Colonies Zones championships.)
In preparation for the mixed 45+ 800 freestyle relay, Jim convinces Vibeke L Swanson to "Sampson" him by lending her locks. Here is Jim in the pre-Sampson coaxing phase.
Jim with a gloriously full head of Vibeke hair. Get away from me, you harridan Delilahs! Ye shant shorn these locks before I have broken 2:00 yet again in the third of three 200 SCY freestyles in a row! (A relay, the individual 200, then this relay.)
Enough preliminary teasing...for now. Let us now begin the vlog proper.
When Henri Matisse became too old to paint, he took a pair of scissors and began creating his famous cutouts. I, Jim Thornton, have become elderly myself, and my capacities have begun to fray. No longer able to type without irritation, I have recently purchased the Dragon Naturally Speaking 11 speech recognition software package, and I have begun to write my vlog by speaking rather than typing it.
This particular blog is mainly a captioned pictorial recount of the high times experienced by me – and those lucky enough to be around me – during the recent Colonies Zone championships.
A brief preamble: none of the pictures below actually show me swimming.
Let's face it: we are all swimmers here, and although we pay lip service to the accomplishments of our lessers and our betters alike, we all mainly care about ourselves.
What the pictures do depict is my attempt to come up with some way to subsidize the cost of my swimming meet schedule.
Swimming is a rich man's sport. Those of us who toil away in the cloudy waters of the Amish mudhole community in western Pennsylvania must swim largely in antiquated pools in competitions that have no prayer of being recognized by USMS.
Because of this, the only way we have a chance to qualify for the national, albeit meaningless, recognition of a potential Top 10 Time is to travel as far as we can afford the gasoline to get to. A certain degree of shameless begging is also a sine qua non for those of us nomadic swimmers wandering about in our junkers in search of a legal swimming venue.
That is why I have talked the wonderful and altruistic Leslie "the Fortress" Livingston into giving me ownership of 14 percent of her house--as well as the equally wonderful and altruistic Bobinator into providing similar accommodation in her Compound Midwest in Carmel, Indiana.
In any event, besides trying to swim my best at the meet, despite two weeks of uninterrupted sickness following the conclusion of our unrecognized Y championship meet, during which I did my best times since 2006 in both the 500 and 1000, I was preoccupied by financial worries.
By the time my little Honda and I rolled into the Compound’s driveway, the automobile flashing its check engine light impotently, I sneezing and coughing and wracked with myalgia, I could not help but wonder: How might I hope to recoup the $49 in gas and $40 entry fees I had spent to get to this point?
The next day, thanks to Leslie's kindly offer to lend me her Ugg boots, I had my answer.
Many of these pictures that you shall see below might be construed as erotic. Rest assured: I have no intention of putting them on the market thusly.
Instead, I have two alternative markets in mind for resale that do not require me to descend into the Hades of sex work.
1. The Ugg Corporation itself, which I am confident is in need of an attractive model for its products.
2. A future edition of AARP: the Magazine after its merger with Cosmopolitan--an inevitability, I feel, in today's dog-eat-dog magazine climate. As soon as this occurs, men like me and that septuagenarian Dr. Six-Pack guy who pedals HGH in Las Vegas will become a new kind of currency.
Without further preamble, let me begin pasting in the pictures and appending captions as needed for clarity purposes.
Note: in another vlog very soon, I hope to discourse more voluminously on swimming and justice. But for now, please simply enjoy these photos and feel free to forward them to any connections you might have within the supermodel industry. I suspect I could use a few connections to get my camel's toe into the tent, or whatever that cliche is.
Swimming hard and financial stress has temporarily tuckered this little fella out!
It's amazing how many young women at this meet keep asking me to tell them, in great detail, about my tick.
Jim recaps poses he has seen other models of his caliber attempt in pictorial spreads. Not many of them have pulled it off quite so handsomely, though! Doesn't this just scream: Buy UGG Boots Now!!!
Work with me, work with me! whispers photographer, Alison Simpson Moore.
And Jim sure does!
This is worth so much more than a thousand words!
In this final classic shot from the series, Jim's fellow U. Michigan alumnus-swimmer, Carolyn Voorhees, lends him her iPhone cued up to play Nancy Sinatra's classic.
In fact, why not click on this link below, and look at the pictures while listening to the perfect musical accompaniment to today's compendium of swimming wisdom?
[nomedia="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRkovnss7sg"]YouTube - Nancy Sinatra - These Boots Are Made For Walking (1966)[/nomedia]
And on this note, it's time to cart my camel's toe off to the swimming practice tent, or whatever that expression is.
Updated April 21st, 2011 at 08:53 AM by jim thornton
4 X 100 1:45
4 X 50 kick 1:15
4 X 150 50 free/50 stroke/50 free 2:45
4 X 100 kick 2:15
1 X 300 free negative split 4:30
3 X 100 IM 1:45
3 X 100 free 1:30
1 X 300 IM
Two times through with a break
10 X 50 1;00
WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00
9 days to go!
Warm up (this is essentially my meet warm up)
300 swim back and free
200 kick on back
4 x 50/1:00 build
4 x 25/30 strong
200 easy swim
Broken 100 Free
50 (10sr) - 25 (5sr) - 25
- total time was 1:18 (-15sr=1:03 swim time)
200 easy swim
Kick, no fins:
8 x 50/1:15, streamline with fast breakout kicks and strong finish (moderate effort kick in between)
- was averaging 53 on these with 7-10 SDK off walls
2 x 25 FAST OFF BLOCKS
- did free for both using tempo trainer for a starter. Feet to the wall at just under 14. swam easy 75 after each
- did 300 mix of free, back, and breast
Total: 2200 yards
Last night's severe thunderstorms/tornado siren alerts didn't make for the best sleeping environment that I've ever experienced. That being said, when I arrived at the pool at my usual 5am, I was in a less than stellar, less than functioning mood. I was, however, the only person besides the coach who actually arrived at the pool. We did the following workout with a few extra rests thrown in as I'm still trying to recover from the intense sprinting over the weekend. Here's what I did:
5 sets (all done w/o fins):
- 1 x 25 Fly on :30
- 1 x 25 Free on :30
- 1 x 25 Back on :30
- 1 x 25 Free on :30
- 1 x 25 Breast on :30 (made these!)
- 3 x 25 Free on :30
5 sets (all done w/o fins):
- 1 x 50 Free on 1:00
- 1 x 50 Free on :55
- 1 x 50 Free on 1:00
- 1 x 50 Free on :50
- 1 x 50 Free on 1:00
- 1 x 50 Free on :45
- 1 x 50 Free on 1:00
- 1 x 50 Free on :45 (supposed to be :40 )
Total Yards - 3800
While my FLOG is still not quite happy with me, the last two days were back to normal yardage-wise. In these two sets, I put an extra :30-:60 rest between the 2nd and 3rd times through of each. On the plus side, the workout went really fast. On the minus side, I found myself wishing I was still tapering and could just get out. BUT.... I stayed in, finished the sets, and never resorted to using fins when I got tired. Today, that was a big accomplishment for me.
The nice thing about having a one-on-one session with a coach is that we discussed my Y National swims - as well as what I learned I need to be working on (such as correct splitting, endurance, and the (*&$(#*&$ breaststroke kick). Now, he's aware of my new goals... and there should be some accountability in that.
On a totally different note, now that my taper is over, I guess it's time to actually mow the lawn. Come on rain!
Enjoy your swims today and I'll check in tomorrow!
This morning I swam at Riverbank with a couple of friends. Here’s what I did:
1200 lcm swim (400s, 200k, 300p, 200IM, 100p)
6 x 50 (25 build, 25 easy) @ :30 rest (1-4 kick, 5-6 swim)
100 FR perfect form
I paused partway through my warmup as my two lanemates were discussing today’s main set. The choices were broken 1100s or 7 x 500. It had never occurred to me that it was possible to have nuanced views on the relative merits of such sets. We went with the broken swims. I finished my warmup during the first one, then joined in for the rest, changing things up as needed to do the same intervals.
800 FR swim, 200 stroke
700 FR swim, 300 FR/ST/FR
600 FR swim, 400 FR pull
500 FR swim, 500 FR pull
(about :20-:40 rest after each)
300 warmdown + play
I actually enjoyed this workout. That’s progress—I think the first time I did this set back in the fall it made me want to cry, because it seemed like it would never end. On some of the long swims today I played around with breathing and kicking patterns, and on others I just zoned out and swam. It was calm and relaxing in a way that seemed to harmonize nicely with today’s misty weather.
I got my first GTD prize in the mail yesterday—a 50 mile cap. In a couple of weeks I can sharpie in a “2” to update it! (I’m currently some 70 miles ahead of pace for getting a swimsuit. I’ve considered updating my goal, but so far I’m enjoying being a flog overachiever.)
Getting back to the old workouts showed me my kick is the reason my 50 is heading backup to the 30 second mark.
I am going back to focusing on quality not quantity.
On warm up my back was giving me fits but then it calmed down 1/2 way thru.
10x25@:45 Free kick FAST could only hold :30's
10x100 Free w/paddles & bouy #1-4@1:30, #5-7@1:25, #8-9@1:20, #10@1:15 not. Held 1:24's on 1-4, 1:20's on 5-7, 1:18 on 8, 1:20 on 9 and 1:22 on 10
200 Free Easy
10x25@:45 Free kick FAST held :29's
300 Free Easy
Total 3000 yards
I took this morning off for an extra hour of sleep. I was still feeling crummy from this little sickness crap I had over the weekend...
Here's my workout...I had fun.
200 Pull (felt strong)
100 Fly Drill (smooth feeling)
200 Pull (again, strong)
Basically a broken 500:
8 x 50s Free @ :45
1st 4 held all at :30
2nd 4 :30s and :31s
I took an extra :15 seconds of rest off the last 50s interval and did
1 x 100 Free - went :59
I felt really good by this point. I'm actually feeling that sub-5:00 is a possibility.
200 EZ (100 Kick/100 Swim)
Talked w/ lifeguard for almost 10 minutes...
Decided to try a fast 200, which I've never really done in practice.
200 Free for time from a push
1:58!!!! **(I did take off my drag suit for the swim)
Cool down in the showers.
1700 Yards - 45 minutes
The guard said I was out in a :57 at the 100. I saw the 1:58, and kinda had to do a double take...and confirm with the guard. He said yep...1:58.
I didn't really take it out that hard 'cause I was afraid of dying in the lap lane and getting laughed at.
The best I've done this season in a 200 Free is a 1:56.1, and that was right after my 1650 in February. So, to come within 2 seconds of that today is great! I'm getting ready to rock n roll at Nationals!! Woohoo!!
Updated April 20th, 2011 at 09:51 AM by jaadams1
Had a fabulous weekend in Boston! The city was packed with runners and the atmosphere was great. All the first timers, including Mr. Fort, couldn't believe the level of crowd support. There were crowds cheering every inch of the way. It was also a beautiful day for running and spectating (unlike today).
Mr. Fort was hoping to go a 3:30, but ended up at 3:40. I thought 3:30 was optimistic given that he'd hardy run in 3 weeks. But he was on pace until the Newton Hills. Oddly, he had no hamstring issues -- it was his quads that betrayed him after the long downhills. His training partner completely blew up on mile 18. In fact, I didn't hear very many people that were happy with their times. Still, he was happy to finish, and very happy that he and Lil Fort got to run the 5K on Sunday. He has to now re-evaluate whether he wants to run another marathon to get a BQ for next year (maybe Lehigh in Sept.) or continue to focus on biking as he did most of last year.
As I predicted, I didn't swim for 3 days. I estimate that I got about 10 miles of walking in though, so that was probably good for the legs. I sat in the whirlpool for a long time on Sunday, but only did about 10 laps in the hotel pool -- too crowded. Unfortunately, I got very little sleep and am now extremely tired. I can't sleep in hotels at all.
I'm also having some second thoughts about Canadian Nationals. May-June is going to be a very busy time (regattas, soccer, trip to Dartmouth, summer swim starting, mom visiting, graduation), not a good time for a trip. And I just realized today, doh, that the meet is the same weekend as the Stotesbury Regatta in Philly where both my kids will be rowing. http://www.boathouserow.org/rega11/scr11.html. On the the other hand, if I don't go, I likely will not have a masters meet until late August. The other option is to re-join USAS and do either the local VA or MD LC State Champs the end of May or beginning of June. I'll have to mull it over. Maybe after a couple days sleep, I'll be dying to go.
I received my Speedo silicone low profile nose clips in the mail. They are absolute crap too -- way too big. I need to return those and the TYR clips. My regular Speedo competition nose clip is sold out almost everywhere, but I finally found a site that had them in stock and ordered 8.
Updated April 19th, 2011 at 09:35 PM by The Fortress
So, the asthma is back under control, but now I can barely voice even a whisper. Thank you Symbicort. My patient's thank you too.
Was lucky to get out of the office to swim today, we fired my nurse yesterday, and the MA's were having trouble keeping up with me. But I did get to the pool for a 30 minute dose of sunshine. Only 2200 yards - but I'm feeling stronger and stronger, thanks to swimming with ATAC. Now, I only hope it shows at the ATAC practice in the morning!!
4 broken 500s 1:20 base
4 x 50 under overs
A quick little freestyle workout with the team. It was all about pacing today.
12 x 25 kick w/fins @ 30
alternate front, back, and side
500 pull @ 6:45
500 swim @ 6:45
10 x 100 @ 1:25
500 swim @ 6:45 breathe 1/3
500 pull @ 6:45 breathe 1/3
I have found that bilateral breathing really kills me. It is getting easier for me but it is hard to teach a old dog new tricks. I figure even if I don't do it in a race, doing it in practice will even my stroke out.
3 X 250 4:00
3 X 100 1:30
5 X 50 :50
1 X 400 free 6:00
4 X 100 free 1:30
1 X 200 kick 4:30
2 X 100 kick 2:15
1 X 50 swim 1:00
1 X 300 IM 5:15
3 X 100 stroke(choice) 2:00
9 X 100 free 1:45
1 X 500 pull
WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00
Tue Apr 19th, 2011
10 days til Nats
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UT, scy main pool
5:15 - 6:30 dove in around 5:20
trained with Todd, Tyler, & Marcio,
wore b70 jammers
2 rounds of 150 fr 50IM, 150 fr 50 k
4 x 150 desc on 2:00
4 x 100 fr desc on 1:20
4 x 50 fr on 1:00
odds easy evens fast
4 x (75 easy, 25 fast)
put on FS II legskin
25 fr fast
25 fr fast
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
here's one set I watched UT men do
they did 4 rounds of:
100 fr on 1:00 make it
25 easy on :30
100 fr on 1:00 make it
100 fr on 1:05
25 easy on :40
UT women sprinters did a set with a stretch cord stretched across the middle of the pool covering 5 or 6 lanes, they had to SDK past it on each length
Thu Apr 28 - Sun May 1, 2011
2011 USMS SCY Spring Nationals
Kino Aquatic Complex, Mesa, AZ
Fri Apr 29, 2011 400 IM, 50 FL
Sat Apr 30, 2011 100 IM, 50 Br
Sun May 1, 2011 500 Fr, 200 IM
With Y Nationals officially in the books, it was back to the pool to begin working on chasing down my new goals (see earlier post with Y Nat results). Since the coaches just got back from Florida too, no workouts for this week were posted and today is an uncoached day for us. So, I grabbed last Friday's workout - which I missed because I was at Y Nats - and did that one instead with my two lane mates. Here's what we did:
8 x 50 Drill/Swim on 1:00 (4 fly, 4 free)
8 x 100 Free on 2:00 (rotating fast 25s)
- 1 x 50 Free on 1:00 (moderate pace)
- 1 x 100 Free on 1:45 (faster pace)
- 1 x 50 Free on 1:00 (fastest pace)
8 x 100 Kick on 2:00 (used new Positive Drive fins)
1 x 50 Breaststroke Kick
400 IM Drill/Free Swim by 25s Cool-Down
Total Yards - 3650
It was unusual to do a full workout after the two week taper period, but I held all the times and actually felt better than I thought I would after three days of racing. The warm-ups and free sets felt like pretty "easy speed" swims. The kick set, however, with the new PDFs had me really feeling my legs by the end in a way my short fins do not. I will probably transition to these for the time being in order to continue to build my leg strength and strengthen my kick (a.k.a. faster racing times). YAY!
On a totally side note, the nice thing about getting back to full workouts is that my FLOG will finally (in a few days) start being happy with me again. Guess my FLOG just didn't understand my taper.....
Enjoy your swims today!
Shortly after rising this morning I heard on the news that Greta Waitz had succumbed to breast cancer at age 57.
Greta Waitz revolutionized the sport of marathoning for women in the late 1970's and '80s. Greta was a true trail-blazer for all of us who have ever completed a marathon.
In 1978 Fred Lebow thought Greta would make a good rabbit for the women's marathon so he invited her to come run at least the first half of the race to pace the leaders to a faster time. Since she was unknown in the world of marathoning and road-racing her name wasn't even listed in the program. Greta not only lead the race, she made an amazing break-away at the 20 mile mark resulting in a convincing victory and a world record by 2 full minutes!!! The public address announcer at the finish had to admit he didn't know who she was!
It wasn't long after her amazing first victory that the city of NYC adopted her as their Queen of the marathon. Greta went on to win NYC an amazing nine times. During the course of her amazing running career she also garnered a Silver Medal in the '84 LA Olympics, and a Gold Medal in the '83 World's held in Helsinki.
Her final marathon was a slow and emotional tour of the NYC course. The iconic leader of NYRRC and Marathon Fred Lebow was suffering from brain cancer but wanted to participate in the world famous marathon he had worked so hard to build. Greta and Fred ran the race together in over 5 hours. It was the last marathon for both of them.
I had the opportunity to share a meal with Greta in Boston once. I was amazed by her poise, sense of humor, and ability to relate to all types of runners while sharing her passion for the sport we all love.
Updated April 19th, 2011 at 01:22 PM by Bobinator
Well, my first Y Nationals meet is now officially in the books. I must say, I HAD A BLAST! Ft. Lauderdale is an amazingly beautiful place and I could easily get used to training at the Ft. Lauderdale Aquatic Center - what a place!
Here's how I did (in order of events swam, personal bests marked with ):
200 Mixed Medley Relay - did free, went 30.54
50 Fly - went 33.11
200 Free - went 2:30.02
400 Women's Free Relay - went 1:06.91
200 Women's Medley Relay - did fly, went 31.79
50 Free - went 29.80
100 Fly - went 1:19.70 (0.2 off my PB, but :02 faster than my time at the state meet 2 weeks ago)
200 Women's Free Relay - went 30.19
200 Mixed Free Relay - went 30.21
100 IM - went 1:21.19
100 Free - went 1:07.16
50 Back - went 38.48 (0.1 off my PB)
All in all, a great meet with great swims. Of the swims above, I placed 7th or 8th in three individual events. For relays, 2 of them finished 4th, 1 finished 6th, and 1 finished 7th.
Biggest lesson learned: Pacing - blew both my 100 Free and 200 Free splits by going out too fast and not being able to finish strong. Will be working on endurance.
New goal: Keep getting NQT's in anticipation of going to 2012 USMS Long Course Nationals in Omaha. If relay starts count, the 50 Fly is my first ever NQT. If they don't count, then I'm within 0.5-1.5 seconds for three events - with over a year to keep improving.
Next race to add: The 200 IM. It's time to fix my breaststroke kick and start racing this one. While I can fake a 25 breaststroke with a great pullout (which I did NOT have at Y Nats and still managed to drop over 2 seconds on the 100 IM), I am much more leery about trying to "fake" a 50 breast - time to learn the blasted kick!
Other workout focus: Fly - build endurance so I can finish strong on the 100 Fly - and perhaps bump up to the 200 Fly in the relatively near future.
So glad that I went to Y Nationals. Can't wait for next year!