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  1. Nice way to start the weekend

    I swam the 6am LCM workout at Asphalt Green this morning. It’s an early start to a weekend morning, but it’s nice to be done by 8 and have the whole day ahead of you. In my case, I was done at 7:15 this morning, since Coach Craig told all of us doing the meet tomorrow to get out early.

    Here’s what I did:

    800 LCM warmup

    10 x 50 “gutbusters” (dolphin kick on back w/ fins while holding pull buoy between thighs) @ 1:20

    100 easy

    IM/FR ladder:
    50/100/150/200/250/300 swim, multiples of 100 are FR, rest are IM w/ no FR (ie 50 FL, 150 FL/BK/BR, 250 FL/BK/BR/FL/BK) @ go-when-3rd-swimmer-gets-in

    50 easy

    4 x 50 choice, fast between flags, @ 1:05 [I did these w/ fins. There were actually 10 of these, but I the last 6 as warmdown, below]

    300 easy

    Tomorrow I’m swimming a scy meet in Queens. I’ve signed up for 200 IM, 100 BK, 100 IM (might skip), and 50 BR. I’ll probably also do a 50 FR on a relay. This will most likely be the last meet I do before nationals, and a last crack at a good 100 BK time for the season, since I’m not swimming that event in Atlanta.
    Tags: lcm
  2. Swimming like an Olympian 4/9/10

    by , April 9th, 2010 at 06:58 PM (The Labours of SwimStud)
    So I had my workout today and afterwards, this little old Russian lady who swims came and said to me: "You sweeming so should be in Orleempicks!" That was enough for me to modestly thank her for her kind words...and we had a little chat.
    So anyhow, here's my Olympian workout!

    Warm Up

    200 Swim
    200 Kick
    200 Pull
    4 x 100 FR snorkel 1:45 desc 1-3

    Speed Set

    10 x 50 FR Sprint 2:00
    5 x 50 Easy 1:15
    10 x 25 Fly Fast 1:00
    4 x 50 EZ 1:15

    IM SET

    5 Through
    100 IM 2:00
    100 FR 2:00
    2 x 50 FR EZ

    Kick Set

    10 X 50 MF
    I did a 300 kick then 4 x 25 front shooters two breaths then 25 back kick sprint.

    Cool Down

    4 x 50 EZ

    Of note,a coach and mentor watched me while he was swimming said my underwater looked really good and later said my sprints looked great too. It is nice to get positive feedback heading into championship season.

    After the swim I went into the weight room and I felt as strong as an Ox and did extra pull and chin ups...something's going on with me. Either that or I was just buoyed by the old lady's olympic comment that I felt I had to live up to it in the weight room!
  3. Swim/Dryland/Yoga, April 9

    by , April 9th, 2010 at 04:34 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    Warm up:

    700 various

    Aerobic Set:

    8 x 100 IM @ 1:45
    odds = drill
    evens = swim

    50 EZ

    Speed Sets:

    12 x 50 @ 1:00
    odds = fast breast pull w/buoy
    evens = EZ

    These power breast pulls seem great for developing and generating hand speed. I like them!

    50 EZ

    3 x (3 x 25 AFAP + 25 EZ) @ 1:15
    #1 = fast doggy paddle drill/underwater free recovery drill
    #2 = fast UW flutter kick
    #3 = fast free

    100 EZ

    1 x 50 AFAP back w/fins
    went 23.5, fastest I've done in this pool
    my streamlines felt tight and efficient

    100 EZ

    Total: 2900


    elevated push ups, 4 x 15
    power wheel roll outs, 2 x 25
    deep squat isometric, 1 x 3:00
    rock star jumps, 2 x 10
    push up isometric hold, 1 x :45 (didn't have the steps I needed)
    lunge isometric hold, 1:30 each leg

    Bikram Yoga:

    Heading to hot yoga at 6:00 after I drop my youngest at soccer practice. Hope I make it through the standing positions.



    Did a speed workout, as planned. Legs were tired from yesterday's drylands and it felt like it took a long time to get warmed up. But I felt pretty speedy by the end.

    I was doing fairly well with my spring allergies despite the massive/record amount of pollen in the air. But today I started wheezing and had to whip the inhaler out during practice. I need to remember to use it before in the future.

    Extreme Angle Isometrics:

    Here's some literature on the isometric holds at extreme angles that I've been doing before my dynamic exercises. I'm supposed to do these every day for awhile, but I haven't summoned up the determination for that yet. Your legs are supposed to get used to them after awhile. Mine are quite tired after yesterday's hold fest.

    Here's a key line: " ... an isometric contraction followed by a concentric dynamic movement will increase the force of the movement by up to twenty percent!"

    And this: "get strong as an ox" (comments focusing on Jay Shader's work)

    And this study:

    Changes in torque and electromyographic activity of the quadriceps femoris muscles following isometric training.Bandy WD, Hanten WP.
    Department of Physical Therapy, University of Central Arkansas, Conway 72035-0001.

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of isometric training of the quadriceps femoris muscles, at different joint angles, on torque production and electromyographic (EMG) activity. SUBJECTS. One hundred seven women were randomly assigned to one of four groups. Three groups trained with isometric contractions three times per week at a knee flexion angle of 30, 60, or 90 degrees. The fourth group, which served as a control, did not exercise. METHODS. Isometric torque was measured using a dynamometer, and EMG activity was measured using a multichannel EMG system. Measurements were obtained during maximal isometric contraction of the quadriceps femoris muscles at 15-degree increments from 15 to 105 degrees of knee flexion. Measurements were taken before and after 8 weeks of training. RESULTS. Following isometric exercise, increased torque and EMG activity occurred not only at the angle at which subjects exercised, but also at angles in the range of motion at which exercise did occur. Further analyses indicated that exercising in the lengthened position for the quadriceps femoris muscles (90 degrees of knee flexion) produced increased torque across all angles measured and appeared to be the more effective position for transferring strength and EMG activity to adjacent angles following isometric training as compared with the shorter positions of the muscle (30 degrees and 60 degrees of knee flexion). CONCLUSION AND DISCUSSION. These findings suggest that an efficient method for increasing isometric knee extension torque and EMG activity throughout the entire range of motion is to exercise with the quadriceps femoris muscles in the lengthened position.

    PMID: 8316579 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    This suggests that isometrics done at the greatest joint angle will, in fact, increase strength throughout the entire range of motion.

    Too bad QBrain is not around for some analysis!
  4. I am Jim's Broken Rib

    by , April 9th, 2010 at 02:36 PM (Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton)
    Our dear Bobinator has recently broken her ribs and has been sidelined temporarily from the pool, which is understandably driving her crazy.

    I have also been in this painful situation--three separate times, in fact, over the past 15 years. I wrote an article about rib problems during which I invited a friend-orthopedic surgeon out for dinner at a barbecue rib place so that he could show me on the slathered slab what I had done to my own fatty baby backs.

    This is that article.

    I hope, Bobinator, it helps you--and I hope it helps anybody else out there who currently has, or may eventually get, a cracked set of your own.

    “The convex surface represents the outside of the ribs,” explains my orthopedic surgeon, Gary Smith, MD. Wielding stainless steel cutlery with the skillfulness of an 18-year veteran sports medicine cutter, Gary dissects the underlying tissues including the exterior and interior intercostal muscles and a sheathe of fascia. He smears off some red matter to enhance the view, then bends forward and eats a bite of “baby back” soft tissue.

    “What’s this?” asks my wife, Debbie. She’s located an unusual anatomical feature in her own “St. Louis-style” slab--a floppy extension that dangles from the tip of one floating rib like a beige Gummi worm.

    “That must be the cartilaginous extension you mentioned, eh?” I volunteer, ever the eager suck-up student.

    “The lower several ribs aren’t attached to the breast plate,” he replies professorially. “The bone continues as cartilage that narrows down and eventually attaches to ligaments in the abdominal wall.”

    Despite the pain I am feeling from my own two currently fractured lower ribs, I cannot keep myself from “hurts so good” engorgement. The intersection of gluttony and gee-whiz science is proving irresistible to this nerdish gourmand.

    Gary’s wife, Karen, takes a swig of pilsner and says, “These ribs really put meat on your bones.”

    I acknowledge her excellent layman’s point, then ask Gary if regularly eating ribs might, in some small way, help me avoid future trauma to my own ribs. I stick a micro cassette in his face to record his reply.

    “Wait till I wipe this barbecue sauce off my face,” he says. Then: “Outside the protective layer of muscle is a cushioning layer of fat.”

    Four weeks ago, I could have used great gobs of such cushioning not to mention a Kevlar flack jacket. My accident occurred not as a result of bronco busting, ski jumping, or drag racing gone awry, but rather during the somewhat less publicized sport of water volleyball. With my reflexes slightly addled by hops and haze, I jumped high into the air for a spike. Alas, my body followed through the overhead motion, beaching me with considerable violence upon a length of barely-visible, underwater pipe supporting the net.

    If you’ve ever done something similar to yourself, you’ve probably experienced a comparably instantaneous epiphany: that sickening acknowledgment that you’ve really bollixed yourself up this time. For the next three weeks, I subjected my wounded ribs to a constant regimen of ice and ibuprofen. Breathing deeply was nearly impossible; rolling over in bed an agony. Sick of my whining, my swimming team friends all urged me to see a doctor--easy advice for the well-insured. Still, by breathing on the opposite side and modifying my free style slightly into a kind of aquatic limp, I was able to continue swimming practice.

    After a couple weeks, the pain was, if anything, getting worse. Even more disturbing was the fact that I could now feel something moving around, punctuated with occasional gristle grindings and pinprick stabbing pains that made one think of bone splinters. Perhaps it’s only hypochondria talking here, but I’ve never liked novel bodily sensations involving internal organs. I made an appointment. It was now three weeks after the misadventure.


    “What about jousting?” I ask.

    “Jousting would be out.”


    The first thing Gary did in examining me was gently squeeze my rib cage front and back, then side to side--both of which, the latter especially, provoked more than a little wincing.

    “Since your ribs are all connected,” he said, explaining his diagnostic technique, “if you compress the chest like this, it usually causes a fracture to hurt. It might not cause a muscle bruise alone to hurt.”

    Other telltale signs of a fracture include tenderness on the surface of the affected bone or bones; swelling at the fracture site; and a grating feeling “like something is moving around in there.” If I had come to see him within a few days of the episode, he says, he would have confirmed the diagnosis with an X-ray, but at this point three weeks after the fact, this would be a waste of money.

    He tells me the odds are extremely high I broke two ribs on the lower left side.

    I’m feeling like a miserly imbecile for not consulting him sooner, but he quickly relieves my self-recrimination by telling me he’d have recommended the same treatment that I did on my own.

    “Broken ribs,” he says, “can hurt a lot for several weeks, but then they just heal by themselves without any special treatment. They’re usually fine within six to eight weeks. Unlike a fracture in, say, your hand, it doesn’t matter if the bone lines up perfectly straight. With ribs, they’ll still function fine even if they heal a little crookedly.”

    Though a relatively common form of sports injury, Gary says he rarely sees rib patients in his practice--probably because many athletes have gotten the “there’s nothing you can do but wait it out” message. Rib cracks are, in other words, one of the few injuries where doctor avoidance is usually a safe bet.

    There are, however, important exceptions. If your rib has been so badly broken that the ends are displaced, a not uncommon consequence of car wrecks and other high speed collisions, the splintered bone tips can puncture the pleura lining the chest wall and lungs, breaking the vacuum seal that keeps your lungs inflated. This condition, called pneumothorax, requires surgical insertion of a chest tube to reestablish the surrounding vacuum so the lung can become re-inflated. Best bet: if you can’t breathe, see a doctor.

    An even more common threat occurs in patients who are suffering so much pain that they avoid coughing and breathing deeply--which significantly ups the risk of developing pneumonia. In yesteryear, broken ribs were often bound tightly with tape. “This made the person feel better,” Gary tells me, “but it further compromised breathing, so that’s fallen by the wayside.” For most people, over-the-counter anti-inflammatories are sufficient for pain management, but in severe cases, patients sometimes require narcotics like Percocet or Vicodin to breathe normally.

    In terms of preventing future rib injuries, Gary recommends stressing the bones via exercise and making sure to eat a diet that provides plenty of calcium to keep the bone tissue well-mineralized. Studies of osteoporosis patients, for instance, have shown they are particularly prone to cracking ribs. You can also provide yourself with some trauma insulation by beefing up the abdominal and chest muscles--a fact that helps professional boxers cope with body blows.

    Not that you should necessarily overdo it immediately following an injury. I ask Gary if it was a mistake for me to continue swimming 3,000 yard practices the day after I hurt myself.

    “The barometer is your pain,” he says. “It’s probably okay to keep up your conditioning in some way that doesn’t cause too much pain. You may have delayed your healing a little by overdoing it, but it’s not going to affect the ultimate outcome. And at this point, it’s fine for you to keep swimming.”

    Gary does, however, draw the line at any sports with a high risk of impact--football, rugby, mountain biking, and the like.

    “What about jousting?” I ask.

    “Jousting would be out.”

    Back at the rib joint a week later, I have a sudden medical insight.

    “Do you guys still use mustard plasters to treat pain or muscle spasms?” I ask Gary.

    He chuckles. “People today sometimes use lineaments and sports crèmes,” he says. “You don’t hear much about mustard plasters anymore, but I suppose there may have been some pharmacologic reason why they worked.” Endorphin release and whatnot.

    Glancing down at the remnants of my meal, I say, “So can you see any plausible scientific reason for slathering very spicy barbecue sauce on my own ribs? I mean, could that help?”

    The good doctor furrows his brow, nods, then replies, “I guess it would depend on how much your wife likes barbecue sauce.”
  5. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 Workout -04/10/10

    by , April 9th, 2010 at 01:12 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 a.m. Workout)

    WARM UP:
    8 X 100 choice 1:50

    1 X 500
    Broken :15 @ 250
    Fins optional

    20 X 50 1:10
    odd: swim
    even: kick
    Fins optional

    6 X 25
    odd: build to race finish
    even: blocks, sprint 20

    optional: Block swim for time

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00


    Swim Workouts
  6. Friday, 4/9/10

    by , April 9th, 2010 at 12:34 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCY Solo

    300 swim free
    4 x 100 kick choice w/10 sec. rest
    4 x 75 w/15 sec. rest as 50 drill, 25 build: 1 of each stroke, IM order
    swim 4 x 50 smooth on 1:00 at ~80-85%
    (all backstroke @ 42-43 and 15-16 spl)

    swim 3 x 200 free on 3:20: hold stroke count
    (ave 2:50 and 16 (a few @15) spl on these)
    swim 4 x 75 back on 1:35 smooth
    (1:05-1:06 on these)
    pull 2 x 200 free on 3:10: hold stroke count and make #2 faster than #1
    (2:50, then 2:40, spl at 14-15)
    swim 4 x 75 back on 1:35 descend 1-4
    (from 1:07->1:01)
    swim 200 free hold stroke count
    (16 spl at 2:50)

    swim down 100
    Total: 3100 yards

    Friday night speed session

    200 swim, 200 kick, 200 drill
    6 x 100 w paddles on 1:45
    1-3 free. went 1:13-1:13-1:11
    4-6 back, went 1:23-1:22-1:23

    100 easy

    8 x 25 back from blocks w/25 easy on 2:00
    (not sure of times on these, around 15-17?)
    100 easy

    broken 100 free w/zoomers r :15 at 50 and :10 at 75 - swim time :57
    200 easy
    broken 100 back w/zoomers swam like above, swim time 1:05

    300 easy

    Total for today: 5400 yards

    Updated April 10th, 2010 at 12:25 PM by poolraat

  7. Happy Hour!

    I finally got my t-shirt and cap from the hour swim. Woot!

    I just wrote up a detailed, loving account of my workout last night, and it vanished into cyberspace when the site booted me out. SIGH.

    On the plus side, my flip turns are feeling so secure these days that I'm seriously thinking of entering the Upper Valley meet in Vermont next month. I've never raced before, but I feel like I could handle the 100 and 50 backstroke events, especially now that my turn is good enough so that there's a 95% chance I could finish the races without being disqualified for doing something illegal.
  8. Fri Apr 9th 2010

    by , April 9th, 2010 at 10:08 AM (Ande's Swimming Blog)
    Fri Apr 9th 2010

    SUBSCRIBE to Ande's Blog

    2010 South Central SCY Zone Championships begins today. I'm swimming the 1650.
    My goal is to do
    3 x 500 descend
    100 build then a
    50 sprint

    hope to improve my time. I intend to:

    1) go easier on the first 200 & settle into a faster per 50 pace,
    ie 31 high 32 low

    2) descend each 500

    3) descend the last 3 50's & sprint the last 50 with a 6 beat kick

    4) warm up more & better

    South Central ZONES PSYCH SHEET

    Here's what I'm swimming:
    (I've decided to skip the 50 fl & 200 bk.)
    02 1650 yard Freestyle 17:55.99
    04 400 yard Individual Medley NT
    06 50 yard Butterfly NT (skip)
    08 200 yard Freestyle 1:51.99
    12 100 yard Backstroke 54.9
    28 100 yard Individual Medley 54.99
    32 200 yard Backstroke 2:29.99 (skip)
    34 100 yard Butterfly 52.99
    40 200 yard Individual Medley NT



    Swim Center
    LCM , main pool
    whitney coached
    6:30 to 8:00
    swam with James, Tenille,
    dove in around 6:30
    wore b70 jammer

    Warm Up:

    Assigned 10 x 100 on 2:30 best ave
    did: 5 x 100 on 5:00 hold mile pace
    held 1:10, 1:10, 1:10, 1:08, 1:07

    2010 MEETS:

    April 9 -11 The Woodlands, TX Countdown
    2010 South Central Zone Short Course Championships

    May 20 - 23, 2010 Atlanta, GA Georgia Tech Aquatic Center COUNTDOWN
    2010 USMS Short Course National Championships
    Order of Events
    Swim Workouts
  9. IMing with Friends

    This morning I swam a LC workout with the AG masters. It was one of those rare days when all four of my strokes felt good—usually one or two of them seem to be lagging behind the others. Today all four were my BFFs. (I’m hoping to stay on good terms with them all for a while, and not slip back into frenemy territory with fly.) Here’s what we did:

    800 LCM warmup

    10 x 50 FR @ 1:00, odds drill, evens hypoxic [I did these stroke, rev. IM order (with an extra 2 free]

    4 x 50 FR build @ 1:00

    3 times thru:
    400 FR @ 7:30 [This got changed to a 450 after the 1st one; I went 6:02 and 6:50 on the first two then just did 150 of the last one, because I wanted to work the IMs]
    4 x 100 IM @ go when 3rd person gets in [I tried to hold 1:35s on these and mostly succeeded; I was getting about 20-30 sec. rest]

    300 warmdown

    I’m getting a massage this afternoon, and golly do I need it. I had spasms in my upper back on Wednesday night after my aborted workout, and am really feeling tight today. Maybe my body is missing the rowing this week—it does seem to help stretch out my lats and upper back.
    Tags: ims, lcm
  10. Not the typical day before a meet

    by , April 9th, 2010 at 08:57 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Doing a quick meet tomorrow but did not want to ruine what I am doing for Nationals.

    5x200@3:45 Free
    500 Free kick w/fins every 3rd 25 moderate
    5x200@4:00 Fly w/fins as 50 rt arm/50 lt arm/50 streamline kick on back/50 fly
    5x200@3:30 Free w/paddles & bouy
    500 Free EASY

    Total 4000 meters
  11. Aerobic swim workout

    by , April 8th, 2010 at 10:46 PM (Elise's Fitness Fun)
    Swam with the kids again today. The coach seems to be into longer sets with not a lot of rest these days. In fact, one of the girls had to talk her into making them a little bit slower. Probably a good thing for me to be getting some good aerobic conditioning as my endurance generally stinks. Tomorrow, I'll try to get some speed in and hope to do at least a couple sessions of speed next week.

    Warm-up: 400 easy

    10 x 100 - 50 free/50 choice on 1:30 - did some 50 free/50 back and some all free

    8 x 100 back: 4 on 1:30 and then 4 on 1:25 (used paddles on last 4).

    6 x 100 on 1:45 (group did I.M. and I did dolphin kick with board and no fins)

    10 x 50 kick on :55 - continued with dolphin kick as I felt like I had a good kick going

    20 x 25 hard sprint on :30 with 1 minute rest at 10 - did free, back, and fly

    300 pull

    200 easy

    4300 SCY
  12. Gym + Swim, April 8

    by , April 8th, 2010 at 10:18 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)

    broomstick twists, 1 x 25
    seated straight arm dips for RC, 60 x 2 x 25
    external and internal rotators, 10 x 1 x 15, each arm


    deep squat, 1 x 3:00 (I've done 5:00 minutes before, but it was bothering my shins, so stopped at 3:00.)
    push up hold with hands on 2 steps, 1 x 2:00
    tricep/bicep hold w/yoga ball & 10 lb DBs, 1 x 2:00
    lunge, 1 x 2:00, each side
    straight arm plank w/feet on yoga ball, 2 x 1:00


    dead bugs on bosu, 2 x 25
    russian twists on incline bench, 25 x 2 x 25
    standing lat pulldown, 130 x 2 x 10
    lying overhead tricep press, 50 x 2 x 15
    twisting squat swings, 25 x 2 x 15
    push up rows w/10 lb DBs, trying to keep perfectly still, 2 x 25 (it would be super difficult to do these with stacked feet)
    box jumps, 2 x 10
    altitude drops to squat position, 2 x 10
    (These are hard on the knees, I think. At least my bruised kneecaps really felt it.)

    Ate a banana and an energy bar and drove 10 minutes to the pool ...


    I had just planned on a recovery/aerobic type workout.

    Warm up:

    700 various

    Hypoxic/Aerobic Set:

    10 X 100 @ 1:45 w/MF

    odds = dolphin kick on back, 1st-3rd 25s = 6 SDKs (about halfway down pool), 4th 25= UW shooter

    evens = evil with long pullouts to the 15 meter mark

    50 EZ

    Modified Elise Set:

    I modified Elise's 3 x (8 x 50) set, with the 8 = 2 of each stroke. Originally, I intended on doing them drill, kick, swim. I had hoped to do the kicks fast-easy. But, there was no way. My legs were still fried. After one attempted fast kick, I altered course and did it thusly:

    3 x (8 x 50), done as:

    set #1 = drill @ 1:00, 2 of each stroke:
    single arm fly
    miss america drill
    breast pull
    underwater free recovery

    set # 2 = swim @ :50

    set # 3 =
    odds = fast evil pull (35ish)
    evens = scull

    100 EZ

    Total: 3100



    I used the exercise out of my funk method today. Worked reasonably well. My legs are still tired though. The power evil pulls were nice b/c they worked my arms. I am planning a speed workout tomorrow, and I may lay off the kicking some for that. Maybe I'll finally bust out my darn parachute.


    Eccentric exercises for tendonitis and strength:

    Ahelee posted this little ditty on my FB wall today:
  13. 4/9: Solo Swim in Singapore

    I am actually posting from the future.

    Ritz Carlton Singapore SCM

    20x25 free
    20x50 2 fly drill, 2 free 5 times
    20x25 back down, breast back
    2x500 free

    Snuck into the Ritz's 25M pool. I will take pictures tomorrow because the setting is pretty spectacular, but no pictures will be uploaded until I get back most likely.

    25M with overflow gutters, no lane lines, no backstroke flags about 84F at 8am.

    When I first got in, there were already 3 people swimming laps, and about 10 minutes later, there were about 6. The pool is all tile, and there is a zig zag pattern made with 4 or 5 colors of 6x12 tiles. It really is just like having 30 or so stripes, and you just pick the color to follow. This worked out amazingly well. After about 2k, people started to get out, leaving just a couple people in the pool and I could do some longer distance stuff without having to worry about traffic. Only one girl couldn't swim freestyle in a straight line, so traffic management was watching her and anyone doing some backstroke. Not bad at all.

    In one direction, the hotel lines up perfectly with the pool, allowing you to swim backstroke in a straight line. In the other direction are big beautiful, not growing in a straight line, trees and other foliage.

    Pool opens at 6am, so I will try to get down there earlier tomorrow. I am a little afraid of swimming in the sun this early in the trip. Singapore is pretty close to the equator, and my current tan is probably not enough to protect me from direct sun in the pool for more than 15 minutes I would guess. The pool is shaded until about 9am, and in partial shade all day.

    3k took about 80 minutes today.

    Updated April 8th, 2010 at 09:27 PM by qbrain

  14. The Thousand Strategy

    by , April 8th, 2010 at 07:03 PM (Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton)
    To die or not to die, that is the question.

    Tomorrow, I head up to Clarion University about two hours away. I will spend the night at the Holiday Inn, getting up in time (I hope) on Saturday morning to make it to the pool in time for 8 a.m. warm ups for the 1000.

    I am in the first heat, which is scheduled to start at 8:45.

    Already, I am starting to get nervous.

    It's been suggested that a swimmer fears two things most of all: pain and poor performance.

    If you avoid the former completely, you guarantee the latter. I know I could take 20 minutes, in other words, to swim the 1000, be assured of suffering no pain, but my time would be terrible.

    But fully embracing pain, alas, does not guarantee good performance.

    In fact, pretty much any distance over a 50 requires husbanding your pain just so. Take on too much too soon, and you will tie up prematurely and finish badly, if, that is, you can finish at all.

    But if you fail to suffer too long into a race, you risk leaving too much behind--and even the most heroic attempts at negative splitting won't be able to overcome the hole you've dug yourself.

    With races like the 500, there are opportunities to practice throughout the season.

    But for me, the 1000 comes but once or at most twice a year.

    The closest thing to a 1000 I've swum this season is the 1650. I went out what felt like a decent pace but soon proved to have been too fast.

    By the 1000 mark in that race, I had begun wondering if I could even finish. The last 26 lengths were a torment I'd just as soon avoid suffering ever again!

    Here are my splits (500 and 1000 highlighted):

    1 1-5 Thorton, Jim 57 TPIT-AM 19:50.00 19:34.18

    1:05.54 (34.58)
    1:40.03 (34.49)
    2:14.52 (34.49)
    2:49.55 (35.03)
    3:24.78 (35.23)
    3:59.96 (35.18)
    4:34.94 (34.98)
    5:10.07 (35.13)
    5:45.07 (35.00)

    [note: 50s all 35s and 34s}

    6:20.07 (35.00)
    6:55.36 (35.29)
    7:30.52 (35.16)
    8:06.58 (36.06)
    8:42.46 (35.88)
    9:18.37 (35.91)
    9:54.37 (36.00)
    10:30.72 (36.35)
    11:07.09 (36.37)
    11:43.09 (36.00)

    {note: 50s all 35s and 36s now}

    12:20.04 (36.95)
    12:57.12 (37.08)
    13:33.82 (36.70)
    14:10.80 (36.98)
    14:47.27 (36.47)
    15:24.20 (36.93)
    16:00.74 (36.54)
    16:37.19 (36.45)
    17:13.84 (36.65)
    17:50.36 (36.52)
    18:26.61 (36.25)
    19:02.29 (35.68)
    19:34.18 (31.89)

    That race was back in January, and I have already forgotten how I paced it. I just know it got really painful. With the exception of the last two 50s of the race, I didn't break 36 after the first 1000.

    Which brings me to my quandary:

    How to pace the 1000?

    I could just try to swim the whole thing relatively fast by "feel"--approach the lactate threshold but back off if I sense I am getting too close. I used to be able to do this better; for some reason, lately my sense of "feel" is not so reliable. I have been going out too fast and regretting it.

    Kirsten, who I solicited for advice, said to try to relax.

    There is also the possibility of adapting the Glenn Battle 500 strategy to the 1000.

    Here is how I would try to do this if I decide to try it:

    • 6 lengths comfortable, 2 lengths just out of the comfort zone
    • 6 lengths comfortable, 2 lengths just out of the comfort zone
    • 6 lengths comfortable, 2 lengths just out of the comfort zone
    • 4 lengths comfortable, 2 lengths just out of the comfort zone
    • 4 lengths comfortable, 2 lengths pretty fast
    • 2 lengths comfortable, 2 lengths all out sprint

    If nothing else, trying to remember this math scheme might distract me from corporeal discomfort.

    If you have any suggestions, please post soon! I leave sometime tomorrow afternoon!

    I did sign up to swim it again two weeks later at Colony Zones. If nothing else, I will try to learn something from the Clarion swim.
  15. sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 Workout -04/09/10

    by , April 8th, 2010 at 02:17 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 a.m. Workout)

    WARM UP:
    3 X 200 3:30
    2 X 100 1:30

    1 X 600
    Broken :10 @ each 200
    Fins optional

    5 X 50 kick 1:15

    4 X 50 1:15
    Descend 1-4, # 4 @ 100%

    6 X 25
    odd: build to race finish
    even: blocks, sprint 20 yards

    1 X 75 easy
    1 X 50 blocks @ 100%
    1 X 75 easy

    18 X 50 1:00
    odd: perfect stroke
    easy: @ race pace 1000/1650

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  16. Thursday, 4/8/10

    by , April 8th, 2010 at 12:03 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCY, with Carrie

    400 Reverse IM alt. kick/swim by 25
    300 pull, 150 free/150 back
    200 IM drill
    100 swim back

    3x around:
    kick 4 x 75 on 1:35
    (free with board, coming in between 1:20-1:25 on all)
    50 easy choice on 1:00
    swim 100 FAST on 2:00
    (I did #1 IM-1:35, #2 back-1:25, #3 IM-1:30)
    50 easy choice on 1:00

    pull 8 x 50 free on :55 descend 1-4 free, 5-8 back
    (with paddles only, went 40->35 on free, 45->40 on back)

    swim down 100
    Total: 3000 yards
  17. Thu Apr 8th 2010

    by , April 8th, 2010 at 10:52 AM (Ande's Swimming Blog)
    Thu Apr 8th 2010

    SUBSCRIBE to Ande's Blog

    1 Day till the 2010 South Central SCY Zone Championships. I'm resting & getting ready to race.

    South Central ZONES PSYCH SHEET

    Here's what I'm swimming:
    (I've decided to skip the 50 fl & 200 bk.)
    02 1650 yard Freestyle 17:55.99
    04 400 yard Individual Medley NT
    06 50 yard Butterfly NT (skip)
    08 200 yard Freestyle 1:51.99
    12 100 yard Backstroke 54.9
    28 100 yard Individual Medley 54.99
    32 200 yard Backstroke 2:29.99 (skip)
    34 100 yard Butterfly 52.99
    40 200 yard Individual Medley NT


    here's my mile splits from the Dixie Zone Championships 2 weeks ago

    Event 1 Men 45-49 1650 Yard Freestyle
    1 Rasmussen, Anders M 46 Longhorn Aquatics-ST 17:47.35

    28.34 30.98 59.32
    31.35 31.84 63.19
    32.21 32.15 64.36
    32.43 32.62 65.05
    33.00 33.23 66.23 5:18.15

    32.77 33.10 65.87
    33.20 32.72 65.92
    32.58 32.68 65.26
    32.61 32.27 64.88
    32.49 32.40 64.89 5:26.42

    32.36 32.62 64.98
    32.54 32.49 65.03
    32.31 32.43 64.74
    32.39 32.46 64.85
    32.55 32.43 64.98 5:24.58

    32.63 32.76 65.39

    I'm racing the 1650 tomorrow & hope to improve my time. I intend to:

    1) go easier on the first 200 & settle into a faster per 50 pace,
    ie 31 high 32 low

    2) descend each 500

    3) descend the last 3 50's & sprint the last 50 with a 6 beat kick

    4) warm up more & better


    Swim Center
    scy, main pool
    whitney coached
    6:30 to 8:00
    swam with Sharon & a new Triathlete
    beside Mike, Tyler, Todd, Jon, & Nate
    dove in around 6:50
    wore brief

    Warm Up:
    Missed it

    50 drop down set
    start 1:00 & drop int by 1 sec each repeat
    used this as my warm up
    cruised it, made it to 36
    then did every other to 30

    changed into B70 Full

    50 bk
    flip start
    12 SDKs off each wall
    Todd Timed
    went 25.4

    this is pretty good I went 26.1 recently

    100 easy

    2010 MEETS:

    April 9 -11 The Woodlands, TX Countdown
    2010 South Central Zone Short Course Championships

    May 20 - 23, 2010 Atlanta, GA Georgia Tech Aquatic Center COUNTDOWN
    2010 USMS Short Course National Championships
    Order of Events
    Swim Workouts
  18. Wow a good one today

    by , April 8th, 2010 at 07:38 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Going into this one I was sore. I had weightlifted again last night, which actually made my arms and back feel better at the time. That little thing called sleep causes all kinds of stiffness and soreness to emerge.

    This set done with no rest between them
    3x100@1:45 Free
    200@3:30 Free w/fins FAST went 2:21
    3x100@1:45 Free
    3x100@1:45 Free w/paddles & bouy
    3x100@2:00 Free w/fins FAST went 1:09, 1:07, 1:05
    3x100@1:45 Free
    3x100@1:45 Free w/paddles & bouy
    3x100@1:45 Free w/fins kick
    8x50@:55 Free w/fins FAST held 32's
    20x50:55 Free w/paddles & bouy
    1 minute rest
    100 Free w/fins FAST went 1:01
    200 Free EASY

    Total 4000 yards
  19. Going to nationals!

    Tonight I swam the late workout with TNYA at John Jay College. Here’s what I did:

    650 warmup (200 FR, 50 FL, 2 x 100 BK/BR, 200 K)

    6 x 100 pull @ 1:30

    5 x 50 dolphin kick @ 1:15

    I got out at this point because I was having some sinus/allergy problems. The water quality wasn’t very good, so that might have been what was causing them (it was cloudy and smelled and tasted funny.) I figured it was best to bail and live to swim another day, but I was frustrated because I really liked what the next set was going to be. I told Scott I was stealing it to swim another time.

    Tonight’s experience notwithstanding, I have been excited about swimming this week, because over the weekend I decided that I would go to nationals. I have been pretty lackadaisical this season about making any long-term swimming plans, in part because I’ve had some more pressing issues to deal with, but also because I was enjoying just swimming the workouts for themselves and simply planning my swimming life from one meet to the next. (Plentiful local meets this season definitely contributed to this enjoyment—thank you Metro meet directors!). But over the weekend I realized that it wasn’t too late to enter nats, that I would enjoy swimming a last scy meet this season, and that I could combine the meet with a trip home to see my folks that I need to make around that time anyway. Bingo! I’m going.

    I’ll probably do the meet as a 2-day affair, swimming all my individual events on Friday and Saturday. The only events that look attractive on Sunday—50 FR and less so 100 BK—are relatively late on the schedule, and I don’t want to have to either plan a really late flight home, or worry about missing an earlier one. So right now I’m leaning towards doing the 400 IM, 50 BR, and either 200 BK or 100 FL on Friday, and the 2IM, 100 FR, and 50 BK on Saturday. That will give me a pleasantly chewy schedule, as well as plenty of stuff to work over the next 6 weeks. I already have my flight, hotel, and car reservations, but will probably wait til after my meet on Sunday to enter in hopes of getting a better official time in the 200 IM to seed myself with.

    And yesterday I actually tried on my 2 tech suits—I have a B70 and a Finis. They’re both new—the B70 is a replacement suit for the one that ripped in Portland. (I've managed to avoid wearing it for the last year and a half). The B70 donning experience wasn’t as bad as I remembered, maybe because I made a scarecrow by stuffing the legs of the suit with a foam roller and a stretching mat and the body of the suit with a few towels. I zipped it up and left it like that for a couple of hours before I tried it on, and it seemed to have stretched out at least a bit. It was still very tight, but getting it on only took about 10 minutes. Plus I didn’t feel like the circulation to my ankles was completely cut off. (I had put water bottles in the cuffs to stretch them). The Finis suit might benefit from a similar scarecrow treatment. I do find the “stabilizing strips” in that suit a little bizarre.

    So . . . onward and upward. Atlanta here I come!
    Tags: atlanta
  20. Lacking Ferocity, April 7

    by , April 7th, 2010 at 09:23 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Lacking ferocity:

    I woke up today feeling battered and bruised (mentally and physically) and somewhat enervated. Perhaps Jimi disease is catching? Or, as a friend cleverly suggested, it's a "pouting hangover." I feel like the deep tissue massage really did me in this time. With 10 zillion things to do (spring is my busiest time of the year with the girls each adding a sport), I decided to take a mental health day, get stuff done, engage in some retail therapy and not fret over swim training. I was quite cheery until I almost died in a car crash. Literally. Driving with my 15.5 year old (new permit) absolutely terrorizes me. That transition period where they gain experience and judgement is super ugly.

    I'm hopeful this short mental break will rejuvenate me. If not, I will go full force into exercising my ass off, which often works. And, happily, my TRX system arrived in the mail late today along with a Rodney Yee "cross train core" DVD that a friend sent me. So now I have to figure out how to use TRX.

    Here's my plan for the rest of the week:

    Thursday: dryland + aerobic swim (probably either Speedo's workout from today or Elise's 3 x (8 x 50) set*

    Friday: yoga + sprint swim

    Saturday: drylands (maybe TRX)

    Sunday: swim @ GMU + bikram yoga

    * I was hoping to sneak off to a Thursday night practice hoping for a repeat of the stroke workout Speedo did this am. But, no, I am advised this is the first travel volleyball game of the season.


    In addition, I have revised my Zones entries to compensate for the lost meet. They are:


    100 free (for 50 split)
    200 mixed medley relay (probably 50 back)
    50 evil
    100 fly
    women's 400 medley relay (100 fly)
    women's 200 free relay

    (I'm told there are breaks before and during the relays on the women's side this year. I really hope so. Last year, I had one heat between the two relays and practically fell off the blocks in exhaustion leading off the free relay.)


    100 IM
    skipping mixed 200 free relay (sorry Speedo)
    100 evil
    100 back
    50 free (may scratch this depending on how Saturday's 50 free goes.)
    women's 200 free relay

    Is this enough events for you, Geekity? I'm hoping it's not too ambitious a schedule. Since I am planning a lot of 100s (for me) this meet, I will endeavor to keep my aerobic work up somewhat while still focusing on speed. I am already planning a massage for the following Monday to aid recovery.

    And (cue protests from Patrick and Chris), I am engaging in dirty rotten sandbagging in the 100 evil with an NT to get more rest before the 100 back on Sunday. I really want to get another 100 evil in since I've been doing so much of it in practice.


    Updated April 7th, 2010 at 09:49 PM by The Fortress