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  1. A fast slug returns

    by , September 23rd, 2009 at 07:32 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    I felt very sluggish today yet my times indicate otherwise. Go figure. The only thing that felt good was the 4 fly 20's

    1000 as 200 swim/pull/swim/kick/swim

    10x50 starts as sprint 20's stroke/ez 30's free - 4 fly, 2 back, 2, breast, 2 free (good breakouts)
    500 kick w/fins alt by 100 fly/back

    10x100@1:30 Free w/paddles & bouy long and loose got faster as I went 1:26, 1:25, 1:24, 1:23, 1:21, 1:22, 1:21, 1:19, 1:19, 1:17

    200 Free EZ
    100 Back slow
    200 Free drills

    Total 3500 yards
  2. 2 for Tuesday

    by , September 23rd, 2009 at 01:52 AM (Swim like an Orca, but faster !)
    Folsom Aquatic's 12:15-1:00 Solo/BYO
    Warm-900 (300FR, 200BK, 100K, 200 rev IM,
    6x75 k/d/s fly/bk/br
    100 cool

    Felt sluggish, Left shoulder was hurting, didn't want to push it.

    EDHS - 8-9p Coach Janine

    Warm 200 straight

    3x100 Fly (K/D/S) (1st was 75 swim/25 drill, 2nd&3rd Did 50swim/50 kick/drill)
    3x100 Back K/D/50Swim 2:30
    3x100 BR K/D/Swim 50 2:30
    3x100 FR swim on 1:30 (1:17, 1:17, 1:19)

    10x75 FR middle sprint on 1:15 (avg.:58) slow/FAST/slow (this was fun and challenging in the nasty water)

    4x50 BR K on back streamlined
    1x50 BK K streamlined
    50 cool down

    Our pool is getting a new boiler, so they had to close it down for a week or two. They moved practice to Union Mine High School's cross town rival; El Dorado High...(Union Mine High school is in El Dorado, El Dorado High is in Placerville... school board peeps, go figure) Any-ways the water there is really nasty, it was clear, but it tasted like soap and later I experienced a sore throat from the chemicals...
    Ive got the first kick down, and Im not missing the second kick on fly, just a little early with it; which is causing me to be late in breathing. I'm now breathing on every stroke, seems to help my timing... however still working on perfecting the fly...the more I do it, the more I like it.
    Swim Workouts
  3. Tuesday, Sept. 22

    by , September 22nd, 2009 at 10:15 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Still feeling pretty flattened today from the race, sleep deprivation, traveling etc. Just hopped on the bike for 30 minutes and stretched a bit. Really lazy for me. Will go to the pool tomorrow afternoon. Hope most of the kinks are worked out by Saturday for the Fall Ball. This will be the first time I've swum in races on back to back weekends. I'm working on shortening my "refractory period."
  4. Take a Hike: Jim's Marching Orders Made Manifest

    by , September 22nd, 2009 at 08:30 PM (Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton)
    I woke up today a bit stiff after yesterday's 4700 yard workout.

    Bill included an early season "test set" which I flunked:

    5 x 200 on 2:30 followed by a bit of rest and 10 x 100 on 1:20.

    I was able to do the 100s but not the 200s on that pitiless interval. I moved over into a lane of my own, which granted was not protected against possible diving board mishaps. I started early and finished late but managed to do all 5 x 200 on 2:45 with enough time left over to rejoin my 30, 39, and 41-year-old lane mates for the 10 x 100's. These I made, thanks to drafting.

    Am I getting old, or am I just getting even weaker physically and mentally and psychologically than I was when I first turned 50, oh those one score minus three years and two days ago?

    Who knows? 57 is just a number, as one guy told me recently.

    A very, very high number.

    Then again, maybe I am just tired out by accumulated exercising over the past week or two. Here's my daily inventory from Sept. 4th up through last night's practice. Note: each new line represents a new day; the line break between my 3800 and 4700 yard swimming days is the one day I completely took off and slugabedded the day away.)

    yards swimming; non swimming activities
    1 mile walk
    3 hours tennis
    3 hours 15 min tennis
    3 hours tennis
    5 hours tennis
    3 hours tennis

    Maybe I am just tired out.

    Anyhow, I decided today to skip tennis and instead break in my hiking boots, unworn since I climbed Mt. Elbert two years ago. Unlike the Mt. Elbert expedition, for which I spent a summer of nights sleeping in a hypoxic tent to pre-acclimatize to high altitude, and a summer of days traipsing around the hillocks and dales of Sewickley and Sewickley Heights in order to get my atrophied legs in shape for land exercise, this assignment came so recently that there hasn't been a whole lot of time to prepare myself for the challenges ahead.

    I am in mediocre swimming shape, and less than mediocre land shape. The fact that I can remain semi-upright during the occasional 3-5 hour tennis match, however, gives me some limited hope that I can hike around in the wilderness though hardly with much gusto.

    Perhaps if I get tired of walking in the normal way, I can take some sideways moves and suddenly leap as if "poaching" a weak return of service.

    Yes, maybe I will do that.

    After all, there won't be another human being for 100s of miles in any direction to see me poaching my way through the River of No Return Valley of the Lost.

    Oh, and if I get hot and sweaty as I did today on my preparatory exercise hike, then I can simply take off my pants and let my freak flag fly, as the poet once put it. And no one, NO ONE!, but me and the readers of this vlog will be any wiser!

    Unless, that is, I record the freakish flying on video, and then, when I make my guest appearance on the Stephen Colbert Report, he demands I show it to the world, whereupon offers from the San Fernando Valley and its famous offshoot film industry begin to filter in by the bag full!

    And my dream of quitting being a director to become an actor, albeit one who needs a "body double" for close ups, if you will, this dream will finally be realized even as Jim Thornton Goes Viral!

    But until then, I suppose we must settle for the amateurish footage of today's vlog, which I must concede that even I find a little bit laborious to watch.

    But you of rarefied sensibilities and a keen mind always on the look-out for semiotics and the like, however, may be different!

    You might get a tremendous kick out of my plodding travails. In fact, I am certain of it!

    [ame=""]YouTube - Take a Hike: Jim's Marching Orders[/ame]
  5. Day 34

    10x50 FR@1:00

    12x50 Kick 1-6 BR/FR@1:30, 7-10 BR/FR @1:00 w/fins (Felt a pull starting on my right leg after 10...put normal fins and swam the last 2 FL down FR back)

    50 FR@1:00 (trying for :35 or better)
    100 FR@2:00 (trying for 1:20 or better)

    50 FR@1:00 (trying for :30 on each)
    100 FR@1:30 (trying for 1:15 or better)
    Repeatx4 w/fins

    200 Easy

    2500 SCY Indoors Solo
  6. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 Workout -9/23/09 -SCY

    by , September 22nd, 2009 at 01:49 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 a.m. Workout)

    WARM UP:
    2 X 100 free 1:40
    2 X 100 kick 2:10
    2 X 100 stroke 2:00
    Swim it three times.
    Round 1: 100's stroke are back
    Round 2: breast
    Round 3: fly

    1 X 200 kick 4:20
    8 X 25 kick*fast/no board* :40

    1 X 200 moderate free 3:20
    2 X 50 build 1:00
    6 X 25 sprint :40
    Swim the set 4 times.

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  7. Tuesday Sep 22nd, 2009

    by , September 22nd, 2009 at 12:09 PM (Ande's Swimming Blog)
    Tuesday Sep 22nd, 2009

    Training for:
    2009 SPMA Short Course Meters Championships
    December 4th - 6th, 2009 at Long Beach
    Online entry is up

    72 Days till Long Beach

    lat press 8 x 40 8 x 45 8 x 50
    bench press 8 x 135 6 x 185
    lat pull 8 x 167 6 x 207


    SCY no blocks
    6:30 - 8:00
    Whitney coached
    UT Swim Center
    dove in on time
    Swam with Mike V

    beside Todd, Tyler, Chris, Larry, Jon, Nate, & Marcio

    4 x 25
    4 x 25

    Main Set

    4 rounds of
    4 x 75 (IM Order) on 1:15
    1) swim 25 fast 50 easy
    2) swim 50 fast 25 easy
    3) swim 75 fast 00 easy
    4) kick 00 fast 75 easy
    100 easy

    assigned 8 x 150 k with fins
    did 8 x 100 k with no fins on 2:00
    went 1:13 - 15 went 1:10 #8

    assigned 3 x 400
    did 3 x (4 x 50 done 25 SDK fast no breath, 25 easy)


    looking for a couple SCM Meets in Nov or Dec?

    Plan to go to:

    1) SCM meet in San Antonio wk before

    2) SPMA Short Course Meters Championships in
    Long Beach, CA
    Friday December 4 - Sunday 6, 2009
  8. Swimming in warm water sucks!!

    by , September 22nd, 2009 at 11:40 AM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)

    But I guess it's better than not swimming. I just wish they would cool the pool down a few degrees.

    SCY, Solo

    300 swim choice (alt free/back)
    200 kick choice (IM order)
    300 pull choice (back and free)
    4 x 50 w/ 10 sec. rest alt. drill/build by 25 (IM order)

    pull 3 x 200 free on 3:10 descend 1-3
    (went 2:45, 2:40, 2:38)
    swim 6 x 100 (3 free, 3 back) on 1:45: descend 1-3, 4-6
    (free went 1:25, 1:20, 1:15; back went 1:35, 1:30, 1:23)
    100 easy

    kick 2 x 200 choice w/20 sec. rest with fins or MF
    (#1 w/MF on back went 2:40,
    #2 w/zoomers, flutter on back, went 2:50)

    swim down 200 alt. 75 back/25 choice
    Total: 2900 yards
  9. IM Day for a change

    by , September 22nd, 2009 at 07:40 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Felt alittle tire today but muddled thru it.

    10x50@:55 Free

    2x[4x100@1:45 Free 1/2 swim 1/2 drill catchup
    ....[2x200@4:00 IM as fly drill, back pull, breast kick, free swim
    ....[400@8:00 IM went 7:00 on first and 6:43 on second

    100 Free EZ
    8x100@:10R kick w/fins alternate free/fly by 100
    200 Free EZ

    Total 4000 yards
  10. Kill the Lawyers

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 11:45 PM (Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton)
    Well, I encountered a threat today.

    A threat to my livelihood disguised as a threat-eliminator for my life.

    A quick back story for those of you who were unable to read between the lines of my last vlog entry: Lost in Idaho.

    Backpacker magazine is a top notch award winning periodical, especially the issue that I wrote for in yesteryear. They recently asked if I would be game for writing about what it feels like to become totally lost in the woods.

    The woods in question, I found out after my last vlog, are located in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness Area in Idaho--the largest contiguous protected wilderness in the US. As Wikipedia further notes:

    Because of its size the wilderness area provides a secluded habitat for a wide variety of mammal species, including some rare, vulnerable species. The wilderness is inhabited by a large population of [ame=""]mountain lions[/ame], and [ame=""]grey wolves[/ame] that visit the area. Populations of [ame=""]black bears[/ame], as well as: [ame=""]lynx[/ame], [ame=""]coyote[/ame], and [ame=""]red fox[/ame] are scattered throughout the area. Other observable [ame=""]ruminant[/ame] wildlife within the Wilderness include: [ame=""]bighorn sheep[/ame], [ame=""]mountain goats[/ame], [ame=""]elk[/ame], [ame=""]moose[/ame], [ame=""]mule deer[/ame], and [ame=""]white tail deer[/ame]. While this area has been deemed as one of the few remaining areas in the continental U.S. with suitable habitat for [ame=""]grizzly bears[/ame], no established populations are known to exist. The wilderness also offers some of the most critical habitat for [ame=""]wolverines[/ame] in the lower 48 states.

    Backpacker was going to fly me--a neophyte to the world of tents and bear bags and fire-starters-- to Boise, rent me a car to drive someplace for three hours, where I would meet a bush pilot, who would then fly me blindfolded into the River of No Return wilderness and drop me off and leave me to my own devices. They would provide me with a beacon to pinpoint my whereabouts to would-be rescuers, and a satellite phone I could use to summon these in extremis.

    Everything was set to go. As one friend put it, "It sounds like a good idea, Jim." I am pretty sure he was sincere.

    But then the lawyers for the magazine raised the issue of liability here. What if the radio beacon they would be using to track my peregrinations somehow malfunctioned and something bad happened and I could call the rescuers up to tell them that, say, a wolverine, was scratching its way through my ribcage and please, in the name of God, come shoot this demon now--what if this happened, the lawyers speculated, and the satellite phone worked, but the beacon that pinpointed my position in the middle of the no return river wilderness didn't work, and they couldn't find me in time?

    Wolverines scratching their way through rib cages, I should add parenthetically, is not just an idle threat.

    "As one story goes, told decades ago by an Inuit native of Alaska, a half-ton polar bear once crushed a wolverine to its chest, but then dropped dead when the cradled beast tore out its heart."

    (For more wolverine lore/possible apocrypha, please visit: )

    I reminded my editor, a very nice fellow named Dennis, that I had already booked a non-refundable round trip flight from Pittsburgh to Boise leaving this Friday, one day after my 57th birthday. I also told him I would sign a waiver, and added that if they were really worried about technological breakdowns, just give me a GPS device. I said I would put the thing in my backpack and not even look at it unless the beacon didn't work and they really, really, really needed to send out a chopper gunship to get the damned wolverine family off me stat!

    He said he would talk to his boss and the lawyers and try to convince them. I said that if I managed to survive this whole thing, they could possibly get me on the Steven Colbert program where I could talk about bears.

    (My swimming teammate Dan Nadler told me after practice tonight that he had traveled to grizzly bear country recently in Alaska. The guide gave him and his wife both .44 Magnums just in case. "If you see a grizzly," the guide advised them, "shoot each other. It will save you a whole lot of pain and suffering.)

    Not trusting that my intercessions here with Dennis over the phone would be enough to counteract the lawyers' timidity and ensure the trip to the River of No Return would remain un-befouled by liability concerns, I decided to write not only my immediate editor but the Big Man himself (Jon Dorn), the editor-in-chief, a pleading e-mail on my behalf. I included some pix from earlier stories I've done to help bolster my case.

    Here is the e-mail, the pix, and the reply:

    Jon and Dennis,

    Please let me reassure you both that, despite some evidence to the contrary in my medical records, I am not a cowardly fellow given to hissy fits at the slightest snarl of a wolverine raising its disemboweling claws in my direction!

    Actually, I think your recent strategy of calling into some question my odds of emerging from the River of No Return without any sort of litigation on behalf of my estate, well, I must say this is a brilliant stratagem indeed! You have managed to accomplish what a combination of Provigil and Stephen King has thus far failed to do: stir my blood!

    Honestly, I don’t think you need to worry about me out in the wilderness. Does not Backpacker stand for one thing above all others—i.e.,. we do NOT listen to the nambiest and the pambiest of the legal team?

    I will enclose a few pix of me on previous counterphobic adventures to give you a sense that I am, if nothing else, a survivor!

    Please do not get cold feet! Build in some sort of redundancy safety precautions if you must, i.e., include a gps device I won’t look at, and maybe a hand grenade to toss at the wolverines if they get too frisky. But please let me go to the wilderness, which I think is the one form of sanitarium the likes of me most needs at this stage of life!


    Me being the victim of a "simulated" torture beating in the jungle

    Living off the land in Ecuador: Cooking a monkey--Step 1. Remove the hair

    Whatever floats your boat

    Jumping in my gumby suit into 20 foot seas off Cape Disappointment

    Goggles aren't just for swimming anymore. I use them when trying to get vultures to land on me to keep the blowflies out of my eyes

    I may be the only foreigner to ever land unannounced on a Siberian military base without a passport and be allowed to leave

    As a novice paddleboarder, I am somewhere about halfway from Key West to Havana as part of a relay team

    You can't see it that well, but the grad students on the boat in the distance are "revving" up my lane mates with a slurry of barracuda heads and alewife body parts tossed into our hungry midst


    When I got back from swimming practice tonight, admittedly chagrined to think the namby pamby lawyers had probably won, and that my newest escape into the world of the deeply lost, where I figured at last I would find my own paradoxical home in the greater scheme of things, when all this was floating about like severed barracuda heads in the fever of my mind, I got the following reply from the benighted Dennis, my editor:


    You have reassured--or at least convinced--us that this is still a fine idea.
    Will touch base tomorrow.



    If I don't have a chance to vlog again before leaving Friday, I will attempt to do so on my return. Have a nice weekend doing whatever it is you do in civilization--civilized things, I would presume. If you have a moment of mental blankness, and you want to give your brain something to momentarily fill the void, I invite you to think of me as I attempt to find my way into the wild--and back home again, unpierced by the most rapacious members of the order rodentia.
  11. Planning the Season

    Well, I just got back from tonight's workout, which -- since I'm unattached -- begins when I show up and ends when I leave. My coach (me) gave the team (me)an easy workout tonight (which I won't post here, because then everyone will know just how lazy I really am).

    Anyway, my coach and I now planning this year's meets (in other words, I'm obsessing about it and talking to myself). The Metro LMSC website already has a pretty full schedule posted -- really early in the season. We've already got two meets at the Flushing Meadow Park Aquatic Center (possibly including SCM Zones) and three at the Eisenhower Park Aquatic Center. Plus a few at local college pools.

    I'll definitely be making it my business to do SCM Zones -- in fact, I really have no excuse since it's just a 20 minute subway ride from me -- along with at least the other FM meet (in March) and the Eisenhower meets. I'm glad we have so many scheduled. It should make for my only being able to do two meets last year, because of back trouble. Anyway, I'm sure no one else cares, but I just wanted to commit myself in writing.
  12. I don't mean to whine

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 09:02 PM (Swimming, Life, and Other Stuff!)
    I am still not swimming.
    My throat, glands, and head are pounding. I have a dry hacking cough, and I feel sick to my stomach after eating. The weird thing is I have no fever.
    I do alright at school till around 1:30; the last hour and a half is bad.
    The "Pollyanna" side of me keeps saying "At least this happened after Big Shoulders instead of before."
    I guess I'll just listen to my body and lay around some more.
  13. Noodler Invasion of the Weight Room

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 08:50 PM (Elise's Fitness Fun)
    Currently most of the state is under a flash flood warning and there are also a few tornado watches scattered about the state. We have been having this kind of weather for a week now and are not expected to have any relief until Wednesday! In any case, the weather has forced me inside to the treadmill for my runs.

    When I entered the weight room to run on the treadmill, I noticed a sign that was four feet tall that read as follows:


    The noodlers have invaded the weight room, but the iron people are ready for them! Yes, these ladies enjoy getting on the hip abduction/hip adduction machines, doing 200 rep sets of the lightest possible weight on the machines, and then sit and yap on the machines for 10 minutes until they start the next 200 rep set. I'm glad somebody finally said something.

    Still, the noodler influence is slowly but surely being felt. As I was running on the treadmill, the attendant came over and asked if I felt too hot. I responded that it felt fine. She said a lady had complained that it was too hot in the weight room even though the thermostat was set for 69. I told her to remind whoever that one is supposed to sweat in the weight room and that it is not a refrigerator.

    Today I did a HIIT workout. Warmed up with a 9:13 mile. Next two miles, I ran 1 minute at either 9 mph or 9.5 mph and then walked 2 minutes. Then cooled it down with a ten minute mile. Whole workout was four miles. I really needed some speed as I had felt sluggish on the last 5k that I did.

    Next run workout is set for Wednesday and the plan is to work the hills for the last mile of the 4 mile run. Think I'll plan to do a 2,000 loosen up swim immediately after the run. Tomorrow, I am hoping do some upper body weights.

    Updated September 21st, 2009 at 09:02 PM by elise526

  14. Monday, 9/21/09

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 05:01 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    It was cold this morning (35°) so I swam inside. Blech!!! the water was warmer than bathwater.

    SCY Solo
    200 swim free
    200 kick choice

    (all on my back, alternating fly/free by 50's)
    200 IM drill
    200 pull no free
    (did backstroke)

    12 x 50 on 1:00 alt. drill/build: odds free, evens IM order (cycle through)

    pull 12x75 free, make the intervals:
    4 on 1:20,
    4 on 1:15,
    4 on 1:10:
    (Buoy only, swam these at 58-60)

    kick 12x50 choice w/10 sec. rest:
    descend 1-4, (did flutter w/board:60->47)
    descend 5-8, (did flutter on back:70->55)
    descend 9-12, (did flutter w/board:65->47)

    200 swim down
    3100 yards
  15. Savageman Report, Sunday, Sept. 20

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 03:57 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Savageman Report:

    So I jumped way out of my comfort zone and into Deep Creek Lake ... (where's the "take the plunge" emotion, Anna Lea?).

    First off, I want to say I had a fabulous time at the event, which had a wonderful festival like atmosphere and beautiful setting. And I appreciate all the great advice everyone took the time and effort to give me! Many thanks on that score!

    But what happens if you put a drop dead sprinter in the OW for the first time at age 48?*

    (*I'm not sure I even qualify as a drop dead sprinter using Ande's calculations. My 200 back time is worse than 2 x my 100 back + 14 seconds ... Does that make me a drop drop dead sprinter or a drop dead dead sprinter?)

    Here's the recap:


    The Vienna Geezer Jocks finished 5th in the coed relay for the half iron division. Our overall time was 5:36. (We would have been 4th in the all male division. lol) We were the #1 all masters relay. All the teams that beat us had a 20 something youngster -- my running relay mate did all the internet research and observation at transition.


    Swim: :29:44
    Bike: 3:25
    Run: 1:39

    Note: Quicksilver accurately predicted my time!


    I was the first female relay contestant out of the water with a 29:44. I was actually thrilled to go under 30 minutes, as I said I would be. But, boy, I made absolutely every rookie mistake in the book and am a stinky OW swimmer:

    1. I sprinted at the start. NOT a good idea for a drop drop dead sprinter. I should have listened to Jimby and I promptly texted him with permission to say "I told you so." I went into lactic acid pain after 200 yards or so. The next 500 I was wishing I could climb out! lol I vaguely settled into a groove later. I think the race would have been more pleasant and less painful if I had built into it like I did in my 22 x 100 pool swim.

    2. I didn't/couldn't draft except for the smallest portion. The fast 25-29 guys and the faster male relay swimmers were just too far ahead, and I had trouble seeing anyone else. As a result, I felt like I was slightly in no man's land. I did draft off a guy for awhile. He apparently didn't like this as he swung wide. There was another (much younger) woman who was very close to me in the swim (29:48). We actually chatted at the start. She is an OW swimmer. I should have known she was reasonably fast and tried to keep track of her when she lined up at the right front at the start. In fact, she was ahead of me the whole race until the last 200 yards. How do I know this?

    3. I did quite a bit of evilstroke! 100 lashings. I couldn't see where the F I was, so occasionally I took a couple evilstrokes to check the field and look for other swimmers. (I recognized her goggles at various junctures.) In fact, she was breaststroking around the huge inflatable turtle at the first turnaround point and I was right behind her, forced to evilstroke as well. (But, Bob, it didn't make my legs feel bad at all!)

    4. Trouble at the first buoy. In my attempt not to swim 20 feet away from the buoy, I was rather close on the first one. In fact, the swimmer in front of me smacked his/her head right into it. Yikes! This caused me to evilstroke for a few seconds as well as that person stopped abruptly. I seemed to be reasonably close to the other buoys without going way way off course. Though I definitely wasn't swimming straight and had to keep correctly some. I love my lane lines.

    5. I didn't kick enough. I realized this after. I was so preoccupied with feeling adrift and staying on course, I forgot this basic thing. I think it would have helped me. On the other hand, I'm not used to either LD freestyle or kicking on LD freestyle, so I tend (even if the pool) to lapse into a 2 beat kick. But this meant my legs were somewhat fresh and I could hightail it up that nasty hill toward the bike transition area. I was one of the few running. The tris, very understandably, seemed to be recovering before hopping on their bikes. All except the other relay girl who came out of the water right after me. I wasn't going to let her pass me on the run!

    5. mj's advice about taking a few seconds before starting the run up the hill was good. I got out of the water very slowly, and was able to start running pretty quickly. Well, jogging is more accurate.

    6. I guess the thing I disliked the most was that I felt like I was swimming in the dark. The lake seemed black to me and I couldn't see anything underwater. And I'm an unskilled sighter. Upon reflection, I think I preferred swimming in the ocean at Wrightsville beach despite the waves. The ocean water is so much lighter and clearer, I didn't feel like I was in the dark.

    7. The water temp and air temp were ideal. Thanks to my wetsuit, I didn't feel cold at all.

    For Ande: I just wore my Title IX sport bikini under my 2XU. I didn't have time to change at transition. I just ripped off my wet suit, pulled on running shorts and hopped in the car to get to the Western Port wall in time to see Mr. Fort. We got there only a few minutes before he arrived, and I also got to see Julie try to summit it.

    How my time stacked up:

    I had the fastest women's relay time, as I noted. There were three female Pros who swam faster with 24:11, 26:21 and 28:06. The 24 was by Susan Williams, 2000 triathlon bronze medalist. She was amazing and I got to see her a couple times on the course. The other Olympic triathlete (from 2004) swam the course in 32:55. Julie swam the course in 31:22, though the poor thing had her googles break. (Her fiance Jeff really rocked the swim!) Note: Julie swam WAY faster that that b/c they messed up her swim/transition time, for the second year in a row. She was a 28+, which is smoking and much more consistent with her other times. She is a great distance swimmer. (And, as aside from the Western Wall where she put in max effort, she had a very good bike leg.)

    One other real female swimmer in the relays (from what our intelligence gleaned) was 20 years old and a 500 freestyler in high school. She swam a 34:49 for the winning coed relay, Team Generation XYZ.


    Mr. Fort did great. He's only been cycling for a few months and chose a super hard course for his first bike race. He completed the 55 mile course in 3:25. He said he gained ground on the hills and got clobbered on the descents. He knew this was coming because he didn't have the technical skills of the other riders. He also didn't have the gear. He was on a 2005 Trek with no aero bars. Everyone else in the bike rack for the relays had serious bikes, aero bars, bibs and those cone helmets. But I think he was super pleased with how he did. He summited the Western Port Wall fairly easily. He went straight up and was very glad no one was weaving in front of him. He was hurting on the Killer Miller climb.

    One relay cyclist (from the winning coed team and a master) was crazy fast. He biked a 2:49 on the course. I think the winning Pro (Bjorn Anderson), who is in his prime, set the course record and biked a 2:43.


    Our runner did wonderfully well. He struggled more on the hills than he anticipated (though he had run the course before). He is a much better runner on the flats. But he ran a hilly half marathon in 1:39, which was the 3rd fastest time among the relay runners. He passed several relay teams to pull us up in the standings.

    He was very fortunate. About a mile into his race, he paired up with one of the ironman racers (a 46 year old Kona qualifer, who went on to finish 10th overall, I believe). They paced each other and drafted the rest of the way.

    Other Notes:

    1. Watching at the Western Port Wall was amazing. There were huge crowds. Many many folks with cowbells. Despite Geek's admonition, I purchased an annoying cowbell for our girls and they whacked away at it for every biker attempting the climb. So many people just fell over as they were riding slowly up the hill. I had never seen anything like it before. And, when you're clipped in, it looks like it really hurts. There were people dressed as "devils" encouraging the bikers as they made their way up the hill.

    2. Even elite Pros make mistakes -- I saw one guy fall off his bike when dismounting to transition to the run. I saw one guy fall off his trainer that he was warming up on in the transition area.

    3. The hills were brutal. Truly, the triathletes there participating are a of a different breed. I was told the blogs and discussion boards had many comments saying some tris just wouldn't do Savageman because it was too hard.

    4. I didn't see anyone that wasn't in a wetsuit. I did notice that there weren't that many people warming up. I guess some tris use the swim as their warm up.

    5. Today I feel like someone took a hammer to my back and shoulders. lol. And my lats were burning after the race. Don't think I'll be doing a test set with Pete tomorrow. I will be cruising and trying to recover for the Fall Ball.

    6. Super glad to have done it. Enjoyed our relay comraderie and the convivial atmosphere. But it was tough! My previous longest race was 2:20+, so this was a big jump to say the least.

    7. Oh, and my B70 goggles were great. I didn't have any trouble with fogging or the sun.

    8. I did get chaffing around the back of my neck at the hairline where I didn't put body glide. So I guess I needed it!

    Updated September 21st, 2009 at 11:35 PM by The Fortress

  16. Takin' it easy today

    Well my week off of swimming is over. Convention is over and it's back to the real world.

    I had lots of trouble getting out of bed this morning. I didn't sleep much while at convention and got totally off of my schedule. I am thrilled that I got out of bed and into the car. I was falling asleep driving

    I dove in late ...
    200 swim
    200 kick
    200 IM Drill
    200 Pull

    They did some sort of set of 50s IM order drill/swim ... I was still warming up

    12 x 75 (4 @ 1:30, 4 @ 1:20, 4 @ 1:10) I missed the first 4 and did the last eight. Felt good for the first few.

    I did a 100 ez and got out. I've got some muscle fatigue going on and feeling rather ... sitting around and being lazy does not agree with me ...

    I have no intentions of running tonight since I plan on working late. I'm exhausted and need to rest up for the week (and weekend ahead!).

    Updated September 23rd, 2009 at 05:27 PM by FlyQueen

  17. Day 33

    10x50 FR@1:00
    10x50 FR Pull@1:00 (had a hard time keeping @ :35 or better today)
    10x50 FR@1:00 w/fins des 1-5, 6-10 (had a hard time even getting under :30 today)
    50 Easy
    4x25 FL@1:00
    150 Easy

    1800 SCY Indoors w/Mark, Aaron and Amanda
  18. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 Workout -9/22/09 -SCY

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 01:22 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 a.m. Workout)

    WARM UP:
    4 X 100 free 1:40
    3 X 100 kick 2:10
    2 X 100 IM 1:50
    Swim the set twice.

    1 X 400 free 6:00
    2 X 200 free 2:50
    4 X 100 free 1:20
    8 X 50 free :40

    1 X 100 2:00
    2 X 50 1:00
    4 X 25 :30
    Swim it three times through.
    Round 1: fly
    Round 2: back
    Round 3: breast
    Short break between rounds.

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  19. Saturday Sep 19 2009

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 10:22 AM (Ande's Swimming Blog)
    Sat Sep 19 2009

    my wife Beth is finally getting her photography website going at
    click through the galleries to see her work
    the arrival page has the track for a song I cowrote with Ruckus Skye & Donna Aylor called
    "You Woke Up My Heart"

    swam in dallas at the SMU outdoor pool
    11 - noon
    jim montgomery coached
    swam with Ross Myers, David Swenson, & others, beside Patti Monzingo & Janie Cole


    8 x 100 on 1:40 desc 1 - 4

    4 x 150

    20 x 50 on 1:00
    1) 12.5 fast 37.5 easy
    2) 25.0 fast 25.0 easy
    3) 37.5 fast 12.5 easy
    4) 00.0 fast 50.0 easy
    5) 50.0 fast 00.0 easy

    100 easy
    Swim Workouts
  20. Still have some speed from the weekend

    by , September 21st, 2009 at 07:34 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Felt decent but once I was into my main set it just seemed like everything clicked.

    11x100@2:00 Free 1/2pull/1/2kick someone reset the clock midway thru then I figured out I had gone an extra 100

    500 Free kick w/fins every 3rd 25 sprint
    10x50@1:00 Fly w/fins as 25 skull / 25 swim w/good form

    5x200@3:00 Free w/paddles & bouy descend went 2:41, 2:39, 2:37, 2:33, 2:30 this is the fastest I have ever done this set

    500 Free EZ every 4th 25 drill

    Total 3600 yards

    Did the first 7x100 of the warmup then had to chitchat with one of the parents.

    additional 700 yards

    Updated September 22nd, 2009 at 07:35 AM by Donna