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  1. Drive to Swim, Thursday, Feb. 11

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 06:46 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Desperate for a swim, I spent almost two hours driving back and forth to swim at the Freedom Center. But it was worth it! It seemed like it was set up SCM to me. I had to restrain myself not to overdo it. But I'm up to 2 swims the week before my meet. I think I'll get a short one in sometime tomorrow too.


    Warm up:

    600 various
    200 fly drills

    Main Sets:

    10 x 25 shooters on back w/fins @ :35

    10 x 25 shootes on belly w/fins @ :35

    50 EZ

    5 x 50 PLD breast @ 1:15 @ 200 pace or maybe 150 pace

    50 EZ

    12 X 25
    odds = easy speed fly @ 100 pace
    evens = EZ

    Got kicked out of the pool by a USA team. Had to move over to a shallow pool. Had contemplated doing a fast 50 back, but nixed it since I was sharing a lane and it was 4 feet deep.

    100 EZ

    4 x (25 AFAP free + 50 EZ)

    100 dolphin dive (the only fun part about shallow pools)

    Total: 2450

    Planning on stretching and RC work tonight.



    Felt decent. After 4 days of rest, the legs don't feel that rested though. I'm increasingly convinced that a 3 week taper is necessary to adequately rest them to perform at the highest level (given the pummeling they routinely get).

    I've been sleeping an obscene amount this week. I feel like I'm in semi-hibernation. It's going to be difficult to get back on a schedule of rising relatively early ...

    Notes on Racing Weight Con't:

    1. Tailor you carb intake to match your training. The more or harder you train, the more carbs you need. Low levels of carb intake will hinder endurance performance during heavy training.

    2. A trained athlete burns carbs at a rate of almost 1 gram pr minute even during moderate exercise.

    3. High quality carbs include: whole heat bagel, banana, whole wheat bread, whole grain breakfast cereal, brown rice, lentils, oatmeal, orange juice, baked potato, whole wheat pasta, tomato sauce, low fat yogurt with fruit.

    4. Don't worry about fat. Far doesn't make us fat. The typical endurance athletes gets 30-35% of calories from fat. Just worry about getting the right amount of carbs and total calories. There is flexibility in fat intake and it should not prevent you from reaching your ideal racing weight.

    5. "The balance of scientific and real world evidence suggests that, in general, endfurane thletes shoujld not go out of thir way to eat a lot of protein. If you're eating enough for optimal performance (10-25%), eating more will have no effect on your performance.

    6. Recommended macronutrient ranges: carbs 40-80%, fat 20-40%, protein 10-25%.

    7. To ensure your energy sources are properly balanced, it is advised to do a dietary audit for 3 days. There is a nutrition tracker on

    8. Eat early! Regular breakfast eaters tend to be leaner. Eating early causes overall reduced appetite and reduced eating throughout the day. Before early am workouts, one should consume a small dose of easily absorbable carbs (sport drink, banana, smoothie, yogurt).

    9. Eating frequently does not increase metabolism. It may reduce appetite. But eating frequently only works if you don't overeat at the small meals.

    10. Consume at least 100 grams of carbs before workouts. Eat during exercise. There is no difference between a high calorie sport drinks and a low cal one in terms of increased endurance. Eating after exercise promotes leanness.

    Next chapter: Controlling Your Appetite

    Note: Vive sent me a note observing the following: "One of the reviewers of Matt Fitzgerald's Racing Weight on Amazon says the author repeats some now discredited physiology info. No biggy, says the reviewer. But it looks like a bit of caution might be useful in translating some of the specifics."

    I have never carefully tracked my diet. However, I think I have 3 flaws: (1) I don't eat enough early in the day, though I do always eat breakfast, (2) I always snack at 11:00 pm, and (3) I may overeat and not exercise portion control at times, particularly at dinner.

    Updated February 11th, 2010 at 08:19 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  2. 2/11/10 Running for A Sixpack

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 05:18 PM (The Labours of SwimStud)
    No not to the a most likely vain attempt to see my abs again before I dirtnap...
    I did another 4.5 in 41 minutes left knee was bothering so I had to stop and flex my hammy to make it go click..then I was ok.

    I still prefer outdoor running to treadmill but it's better than slipping around in the frozen tundra that is NE USA right no.

    After my run I did some core work but I ommitted should and RC set because of shortage of time due to a snow delay.

    However...I must say I tend to get very sweaty after running and while doing core work...even when I take off the sweat shirt.
  3. Problem Solved

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 04:42 PM (Chicken's Nuggets)

  4. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 Workout -02/12/10

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 02:21 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters GOLD Workout)

    WARM UP:
    1 X 300 4:30
    6 X 50 1:00
    1 X 200 3:00
    6 X 50 1:00
    1 X 100 1:30
    6 X 50 1:00
    50's: Descend 1-3/4-6

    2 X 150 kick 3:15
    3 X 100 kick 2:15
    4 X 50 kick 1:15

    1 X 300 4:30 4:15 4:00
    1 X 200 3:00 2:50 2:40
    1 X 100 1:30 1:25 -
    Three times through.Round 1 intervals left, round 2 middle, round 3 right.

    1 X 50 easy 1:00
    6 X 25 fast :30
    1 X 50 easy 1:00
    Twice through.

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  5. Thu Feb 11th 2010 drop downs

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 11:22 AM (Ande's Swimming Blog)
    Thu Feb 11th 2010

    weighed 217 after practice

    Duh, I forgot to turn in my hour swim info. The deadline was yesterday, Oops

    Subscribe to this Blog


    scy, main pool
    whitney coached
    noon to 1:15
    swam with Tyler todd, & Mike
    beside Mike Lovato, Ritchie Cunningham, Erin, Larry, Paul & Max

    wore old B70 legs

    warm up:
    200 k

    Started at 2:00 drop interval by 2 seconds on each round she gave us a 1:00 break at 1:30

    begin with 150's
    150's to 1:40
    125's to 1:26
    100's to 1:08
    075's to 1:00

    assigned 400, 200k, 400
    100 k strong went 1:06

    rested 5 minutes

    100 k faster SDK & fly kick on my side
    went :58

    2010 MEETS:

    March 4 - 6, 2010 Austin, TX UT Swim Center
    Austin Grand Prix
    Count Down

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

    May 20 - 23, 2010 Atlanta, GA Georgia Tech Aquatic Center
    2010 USMS Short Course National Championships
    Order of Events

    Updated February 11th, 2010 at 09:58 PM by ande

    Swim Workouts
  6. Wed Feb 10th 2010

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 10:52 AM (Ande's Swimming Blog)
    Wed Feb 10th 2010

    weighed 217 after practice

    went to be late on Tue night so I skipped the Wed 5:30 AM practice to swim at noon

    Subscribe to this Blog



    scy, main pool
    whitney coached
    noon to 1:15
    swam with Tenille & Marcio
    beside Larry

    wore old B70 legs

    warm up:
    went around 800

    5 x 200 fr on 2:20

    50 easy

    5 x 100 fr on 1:05

    50 easy

    attempted 5 x 50 fr on :30

    50 easy

    2010 MEETS:

    March 4 - 6, 2010 Austin, TX UT Swim Center
    Austin Grand Prix
    Count Down

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

    May 20 - 23, 2010 Atlanta, GA Georgia Tech Aquatic Center
    2010 USMS Short Course National Championships
    Order of Events
  7. I feel for you snow junkies

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 07:22 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    I am cold and yes I am in the south. When I lived in Connecticut I had an outdoor jacket and an indoor jacket. At least here in the south I have let go of the indoor jacket. I am still cold...

    5x200@3:30 Free to Warm Up in more ways than one
    500 Free kick w/fins & snorkle held good streamline (this is hard for me)
    500 Back kick w/fins good streamline (this seems easier)
    5x100@1:45 Free to Back w/paddles & bouy 4F, 3F/1B, 2F/2B, 1F/3B, 4B
    8x100@1:30 Free w/paddles & bouy long and loose
    200 Free easy

    Total 3500 yards
  8. I'm not sick, I've just been for a swim.

    by , February 11th, 2010 at 12:29 AM (Chicken's Nuggets)
    It used to annoy me that, for the last few years, every time I talked to my mum on the phone she always asked me if I was sick.

    She'd say I sounded like I had a cold.

    I'd reply, "NO! I'm not sick, I've just been for a swim!".

    It's now routine for me to sneeze for hours after every swim practice, and my sinuses are constantly blocked. I think this is a very common complaint for swimmers.

    I didn't realise how awful I sounded until I bought myself a little Flip camera and played around with it this afternoon. This is not my real voice! Yuk! Sorry mum, you were right. I do sound like I have a cold.

    This is a trial video I took this afternoon of my fledgeling, Charlotte, giving my 5lb, 10oz cat Marmalade, her thyroid medication.

    [ame=""]YouTube- VID00003.AVI[/ame]
  9. Liam White, Boy Genius

    by , February 10th, 2010 at 10:10 PM (Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton)
    Since Sunday, my friend and swimming coach Bill White and his family have been staying at our house due to a power outage.

    It has been a wonderful experience for me, and I am hoping that this vlog will not bring me to the attention of the authorities vested with child labor law violations.

    Liam and his sister Ciara, Bill and Colleen's adorable progeny/spawn, have made this house come alive! Liam has figured out, among other things, how to broadcast the Internet on our High Definition TV set; how to get free replacement Nintendo Wii remote's wrist straps and and Nintendo Wii remote jacket; how to melt snow without causing icing problems via electrolysis and/or evaporative technlogies not yet fully pioneered; etc. He has also been shoveling.

    But more than anything else, he has been showing me how to revolutionize my personal computing experience.

    Liam White, the 9 ⅝- year-old, fourth grade boy genius (who showed me how to use run "charmap" to get the ⅝ symbol) showing me how to use Adobe Photoshop Elements.

    Regular readers of this vlog will remember the pithy genius of Liam, back when he was in Ms. Lanza's third grade class at Cornell Elementary (nominated for a PA Blue Ribbon School Award). This is his homework assignment on idioms. I do not personally believe that any paper turned in that day was more deserving of an A+.

    Other than the vast amount of time that I wasted on Facebook and other Internet time sucks, I worked on my next article assignment, which is on the health benefits of exposure to Nature. I do not believe that my editors, when assigning the topic, had in mind Snowmageddon I and Snowmageddon II. That is neither here nor there. In any event, after reading a scientific journal article on how houseplants in the office setting can improve the mood of males, vis a vis reduction of stress and state anger, I decided to move my office to the jungle. Liam helped me execute this dream by making it a reality.

    And on this note, it is time (arguably high time) that Liam goes to bed and I shut my pie hole.

    Thanks, Liam! Thanks Bill for animating Liam, and Colleen for serving as the Vessel for this animation, and Ciara for not bothering Liam while he showed me how to use the computer(which I had no idea how to do before the power outage brought the boy genius into my home).
  10. Tuesday

    by , February 10th, 2010 at 09:25 PM (Swimming, Life, and Other Stuff!)
    We had a 2 hour delay at school today. I love 'em!
    Swimming was a solo effort today at LA Fitness. (my membership ends Friday) I felt tired, sluggish, and unmotivated so I just made it up as I went along.

    **10 X 50 Free on 1:00
    **100 Flutter kick with board and no fins.
    **4 X 50 Free on :55
    **100 flutter kick with board and no fins.
    **4 X 50 Free on :50
    **100 Back flutter kick no fins
    **15 X 100 (alternating 100 Back, IM, and free) on 2:00
    **8 X 25 Butterfly Drills on :45
    **easy 100 backstroke cool-down

    3,000 scy

    I'm trying to figure out if I want to swim in the IU Master's meet this Saturday. I'd love to wear my BS suit a few more times!
    I'm trying to shake this shoulder/neck problem. I will be visiting the chiropractor and getting graston work on Friday. I'm not sure if a swim meet would be a good idea the morning after the bodywork. I'll probably just get up early Saturday and make my mind up then.
  11. Looking good

    by , February 10th, 2010 at 07:26 PM (Elise's Fitness Fun)
    At least for right now, it looks like we will be able to swim at Auburn at least for one day. Have a friend staying at the house to watch son and the animals while we are at the meet(we have 3 dogs, 3 cats). I've had too much time out of the pool, so not sure how well I will do. Got in today for the first time since Saturday. Have had some things come up, so kind of bummed could not get in until today, but here it is:

    Warm-up: Reverse 200 I.M.

    8 x 25 swim/drill with fins on:45
    #s 1,3 - Regular free, work turnover
    #2, 4 - heads-up free - work turnover
    #5, 7 - breaststroke with flutter kick
    #6, 8 - breaststroke with dolphin kick

    4 x 25 breast - alternate 2 strokes with breast kick and 2 strokes with dolphin kick

    4 x 100 fly - 3 rt/3lt/3 full on 2:00

    100 free drill - big arms

    6 x 50 on 1:15 - fly/back, back/breast, breast/free, free/fly, free/back, free/breast

    1 x 200 easy dolphin with fins on back

    4 x 25 back

    100 easy

    1700 SCY
  12. IM Morning

    The temp was around 30 degrees this morning, so I wasn’t sure whether the pool would be open for 6 am workout. I drove over with my fingers crossed, and was rewarded with an open pool, an enthusiastic if shivering coach on deck, and 3 great workout buddies. It was cold but not nearly as windy as last night, and there was a lovely sunrise just after warmup.

    Here’s what we did:

    1000 scy warmup (400 swim, 300 drill, 200 kick, 100 IM)

    12 x 25 @ :30; odds underwater, evens choice build

    8 x 25 fly @ :30 focusing on technique [I worked on keeping my arms moving at all times—no extended gliding!—and arm entry and pull positions]

    2 x 200 IM @ 3:30

    8 x 25 back @ :30, focusing on technique [getting a deeper catch]

    2 x 200 fr/bk/fr/bk @ 3:30

    8 x 25 breast @ :40, focusing on technique [I worked on delaying my kick a bit—it made my breaststroke feel neater and less splayed out, but maybe also a bit less powerful]

    2 x 200 IM @ 3:30

    4 x 25 sprint FR @ :45 [“because you should always end an IM set with some fast freestyle”]

    400 warmdown

    It was super to get in some stroke coaching this morning—I love working on technique, and don’t do it enough. I felt good in the water but fatigued, and none of my swimming was terribly fast. I was grateful for the generous intervals. I’m looking forward to a easy morning off (from swimming at least) tomorrow.

    After swimming I drove up to Alabama for lunch with my family, then back down here. As I was passing all the farms, I was reminded of my age-group swim coach who insisted on rolling down the window and mooing at the cows anytime we passed any—he said it was to see if he could make them look up. I think when he acquired this habit, he had no idea that he would one day be stationed in rural Alabama and get to do so much mooing.
    (For any parents of adolescents out there who are looking for new and improved ways of embarrassing your kids—this is an excellent method. Make sure you do it when they have friends in the car.)
  13. Snoverkill, Wed., Feb. 10

    by , February 10th, 2010 at 05:14 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Well, we got socked with our 4th big snow of the winter. 4 feet of snow in 96 hours. More snow porn pics attached below. There are 6-7 feet snow drifts around my house. Everything's closed, as expected, so no swim. And school is now closed through the end of the week. The kids haven't been in school since last Thursday.


    I did about 50 minutes of the P90X yoga DVD, skipping the difficult balancing postures to rest the legs. Then, I did about 15 minutes of RC exercises and another 15 minutes of stretching. I am all bendy and foldy.

    Racing Weight:

    I read more of Racing Weight while finishing up my LOTR marathon. Here's the Summary:

    Seasonal Considerations:

    1. Your racing weight is your ideal performance weight, but not necessarily your training and general health. You don't want to leave your body underfueled for base-level training. Keep your training weight no more than 8% greater than your skinny racing weight.

    2. Weight gain doesn't occur slowly, but rather rapidly over short periods of time. The 7 most frequent causes of weight gain for athletes are: weekends, holidays, periods of stress (the stress hormone cortisol promotes fat storage), the freshman 15, pregnancy, menopause, and post diet rebound. Gaining weight slowly through adulthood is not inevitable and natural. Training and activity will slow the decline in muscle mass and increase in body fat.

    3. It's fine to take 1-2 weeks off after a big event for physical and mental regeneration, but after that get back to daily exercise. Short easy workouts are far better than nothing, though endurance athletes tend to dismiss their worth.

    4. The amount of carbs in your diet should vary with your training cycle. Reduce carbs and increase protein in the off season. The healthiest and most efficient way to increase protein is to use protein shakes.

    5. At present, there is no solid evidence to suggest that supplements are required for optimal muscle growth and strength. However, increasing protein and amino acids has other benefits. It reduces appetite, eating and fat storage, thereby promoting weight loss.

    Improving Your Diet Quality:

    1. The gylcemic index is nearly useless as a tool for weight management or general health promotion. There's more to food than its effect on blood glucose. The truest measure of a food's value is its total concentration and balance of nutrients.

    2. The author creates his own diet tool, called The Diet Quality Score. Pretty basic theory: eat a wide variety from 6 food sources. Don't eat too much from one source no matter how nutritious. He cites a study of women that showed the women who ate the greatest of healthy foods had the lowest mortality rate over 10 years.

    3. The 6 high quality foods are: fruit, veggies, lean proteins, whole grains, low fat dairy and essential fats. Fruits are awesome b/c of their high antioxidant capacities, fiber and water content. The author suggests 3-4 servings of fruit and 3-4 of veggies each day. "No one ever gets fat eating nuts." And you must eat whole grain carbs, which is an endurance athlete's energy source. Omega 3 fatty acids are essential and enhance the fat burning effect of exercise. The best sources of salmon, flax seeds and flax seed oil. He recommends a daily supplement. Unlike Geek, I don't think this promotes the need for Depends. Most people likely need to be taking Vitamin D as well, especially if they don't get enough sunshine.

    More updates later ...

    Updated February 10th, 2010 at 05:24 PM by The Fortress

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  14. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 Workout -02/11/10

    by , February 10th, 2010 at 02:35 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters GOLD Workout)

    WARM UP:
    2 X 200 3:20
    4 X 100 1:40
    4 X 75 1:15
    4 X 50 :50
    12 X 25 :30

    1 X 200 kick 4:30
    1 X 100 kick 2:15
    4 X 25 kick*fast* :45
    Complete the set twice

    10 X 50 1:00
    Stroke/free by 25

    1 X 100 easy 2:30
    1 X 50 @ 100% 1:00
    Five times through, all choice.

    Easy 100 swim

    10 X 50 free
    Short rest interval i.e. :35 :40 :45 :50

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  15. 20 yard weights today.

    by , February 10th, 2010 at 01:48 PM (The Labours of SwimStud)
    Early closing at the Y but I was at the sister branch and jumped in the 20 yard pool for an hour rather than miss out all together. I got in 3000. I don't like swimming 20 yards, but I found the extra turn to be an interesting training tool...the tiredness from a 5 x 20 100 was different than a 4 x 25 100. I think the extra push off hits you, although faster tiime (holding 1:25's on 1:45) results.

    Anyhow did it thus:

    5 x 100 1:45
    9 x 60 K 1:30...think I held 1:15's at worst--no fins. Kicked extra 20 Yards to make 500.

    5 through:
    100 IM 2:00 (did either 2 FR or 2 BR--I didn't think about it until too late that I should have gone through and done an extra 20 yards per stroke
    100 FR 2:00

    3 x 200 K Fins
    1 x 400 K Fins

    Pool was closing but I figured fast fin kicking would be a good leg hammerer in a short time space.
    I had a Muscle Milk with lunch...I think I'll power nap soon...
  16. Felt sluggish but did well?

    by , February 10th, 2010 at 07:43 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Go figure, sometimes when you have nothing you still do well. The streamline position when I am on my stomach is still not natural and is uncomfortable but I will have it down by Nationals.

    10x100@2:00 Free 1/2 pull 1/2 kick
    5x100@1:45 Fly w/fins as 50 skull drill/50 kick
    5x100@1:30 Free kick w/fins went 1:21, 1:20, 1:20, 1:21, 1:18 legs burned
    5x100@1:40 Free w/paddles & snorkle
    10x50@55 Free good streamline and dolphin kickout on pushoff and turns
    3x200@:15R as 100 drill/100 swim good streamlines and kickouts

    Total 3600 yards
  17. 2/8/10

    by , February 9th, 2010 at 09:47 PM (The Labours of SwimStud)
    Ran 4.5 miles in 41 minutes and did a 2o minute core and shoulder routine.
  18. Tuesday, Part II

    It was really scary windy at workout tonight. Chairs were blowing around on deck, and I was nearly 2 strokes shorter on the backstroke flags with the wind than against it. Coach Chuck gamely stood on deck and shivered while he coached. Here’s what I did:

    600 warmup (400 swim, 200 kick)

    8 x 100 (S/K/D/S) @ 1:50 [Odds FR, evens BK]

    12 x 25 kick @ :30, odds build, evens fast

    3 x 150 w/ fins (100 easy swim, 50 very fast kick) @ 2:45

    4 x 75 w/ fins and paddles (50 easy swim, 25 sprint) @ 1:30 [I can see why people get addicted to fins—it was really fun going so fast on these and on the previous kicks]

    4 x 200 FR neg. split @ 3:15

    3 x 150 w/ fins (100 easy swim, 50 very fast kick) @ 2:45

    4 x 75 w/ fins and paddles (50 easy swim, 25 sprint) @ 1:30

    3 x 200 FR @ 3:15 (1st one neg. split, 2nd one 150ez/50fast, 3rd one warmdown)

    With this morning’s swim, that puts me at over 7000 yards for the day, which is more than I’ve swum in a long time.

    (I’ll see how I feel about that 6 am workout tomorrow!)

    (Physics problem note: I'm still working on accumulating enough pennies to continue my snorkel experimentation)
  19. #2 Whose Idea Was This ?!

    by , February 9th, 2010 at 08:17 PM (Catch, Pull, and Glide!)
    A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step ... Lao-Tsu

    First, let me quell some rumors about my early workouts:
    - I was wearing “floaties” … UNTRUE!
    - A tugboat pulled up next to me to offer assistance … UNTRUE!
    - Lifeguards paced nervously on the deck … UNTRUE … mostly ;-)
    - It was ugly, and a bit painful … TRUE! … leading me to mumble the title of this blog entry repeatedly!!!

    This is the third time I’ve restarted the climb to competitive swimming after a few years off. It’s a bit like planning your season … but with a much slower ramp-up. I targeted a regional USMS meet about two months after my “re-entry”, hoping to swim the 100 free, 100 back, 100 IM, and 50 free, and maybe a relay at that meet. For the season, I’m hoping to stay on target for our April Zone Championships.

    Is that what I normally swim? Some of it is. At heart – and by skill and training - I’m a middle and distance freestyler – the 200, 500 and 1000. I’ve done the 1500 before, and will race the 100 and 50 at times … but I can’t think about those demanding distances this early. I’ve even done a couple of long open water races – ugh! – but more on that in a later entry! I swim the 100 and 200 IM (never the 400!),and also the 100 and 200 back. I’ll do a 100 fly if someone buys me a soy latte, but otherwise I avoid it! And BREASTROKE?! Forget it except for the IM! (Hey, how did those Breastrokers get the first USMS group listing?! ;-) )

    Next, let me confirm some rumors
    about how I started out my workouts:
    - I built my workout distances slowly, opting for more frequent workouts at less yardage … TRUE! I quickly built from 500 to 1800 yards over the first month, and am in the 2000 – 2500 yard range per workout at the end of month two … about 4-5 times per week.
    - I used fins to ease my shoulders into their workload, and to help build lungs … TRUE! I’m a big fan of a good set of fins, as long as you don’t keep them on all the time, that is ;- )
    - Like “Location” in the real estate mantra … I focused on Technique, Technique, Technique … TRUE! I mentally reviewed my Total Immersion principles and drills, and other theory and coaching that focus on minimal resistance and finding the right place to Catch, Pull, and Glide.
    - I remembered that (Masters) Swimming is Fun and also a Social Activity … TRUE! I’ve made some new friends at the pool, and always try to have a smile and friendly word at the ready. And, as we all know, working out with others does give you that bit of extra motivation.
    - I remembered that “It’s Me and the Clock” … TRUE! … and to set my targets based on what I’m capable of doing, given the amount of time and effort I’m willing and able to commit.

    It’s been a fun start back in the water
    . The benefits of working out are great, as you know! My body is slowly getting into shape, I’m sleeping and eating better, and my gills are working much better! Don't forget to look at the USMS "Getting Started" page for some good info this topic.

    Next time, we’ll talk about that first swim meet … ! Peace, and Happy Swimming!

    Updated February 11th, 2010 at 12:57 PM by tcooney

  20. Success! Tuesday, Feb. 9

    by , February 9th, 2010 at 04:42 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Whew! Got a swim in today. The Rec Centers opened at noon. It was pretty packed when I arrived, but emptied out fairly quickly. All the regulars were there getting their swims in, including Cage Fighter. He claimed to be "horribly" out of shape after 4 days of no FISH practices. Anyway, I was feeling pretty battered from my deep tissue massage (takes me 2-3 days to recover from these), so I just swam slowly and re-established feel.


    Warm up:

    750 various

    Drill sets:

    10 x 25, shooters on belly
    10 x 25, evens = easy speed fly, odds = easy
    10 x 25, shooters on back

    50 EZ

    5 x 100 PLD breast @ 2:00
    working on long pullouts

    50 EZ

    Mini Aerobic Set:

    8 x 50 backstroke @ 1:00
    working on breakouts

    50 EZ

    Mini Speed Set:

    4 x (25 AFAP + 50 EZ)
    odds = fast doggie paddle drill (an Allen Stark drill)
    evens = fast free

    Free didn't feel as bad as I expected.

    100 EZ

    Total: 3150



    This is a pretty typical pre-meet workout for me. I suppose I could have done a fast 50 or two, but I was feeling like a lazy sprinter. And my legs are still feeling heavy and beat up from the Sunday drylands and deep tissue massage. This too shall pass by the weekend I hope. I doubt I'll get in a swim tomorrow. The snow has already started and it's supposed to be very heavy tonight.

    2010 Meets:

    Richmond Meet:

    I had to look up what I was swimming this weekend, as I couldn't recall. One event of each stroke: 200 back, 100 evil (split on a 200), 50 free, 100 fly. I'm happy to count for anyone who needs a counter on Saturday in Richmond. The last time I swam a 200 back (Jan 2009), I went 2:22.3 (had to look that up). I recall I didn't take many SDKs after the start, as I was terrified of going into oxygen debt. I think this time, I'll likely take 5-6 off each turn and take my chances. On the 100 evil, I'm aiming for long pullouts. I have no idea what I'll go in this event, and no recollection of any of my age group times in this stroke. Hopefully, I won't get DQ'd by spacing out on the second 100 ... In the 100 fly, I'd like to best my best in season time, which I believe is a 1:04+. The 50 free is the usual crapshoot. This might be the only time I swim it this year.

    Albatross Meet:

    I also entered the Albatross meet last night on line: 100 fly, 50 back, 100 back and 50 free. All times sandbagged. I'll likely do my usual 3-5 days rest that consists mostly of knocking off drylands and weights.

    Colonies Zones:

    I'm mulling over my events for Colonies Zones. I'm leaning toward:


    100 free
    50 breast
    100 fly


    100 IM
    50 fly
    100 back

    I'm swimming a lot of relays at this meet, most likely, so no need to pile on too many individual events. This would be the first time I haven't swum 50 back there if I do this lineup ... But it's at the end of the day before our 400 medley relay and right after 100 fly. (But perhaps I'll lead off a relay and get a time.) KPN is planning on attending this meet as well, though she doesn't know what events she's swimming.

    Racing Weight:

    Mr. Fort, I and our Savageman relay mate were chatting about the NYT article on weight/fitness the other night. He loaned us his book entitled "Racing Weight: How To Get Lean for Peak Performance." I scanned some of the early sections on swimming and found the following nuggets:

    Swimmers have the highest average body fat of any endurance athlete.

    "Swimming is not a natural human activity, so it is no surprise that the typical elite swimmer's body has unusual characteristics .... tall, long torso, long arms, large feet, loose ankles, double jointed elbows/knees/ankles."

    "An interesting question is whether body fat percentages are somewhat higher for swimmers than in other endurance athletes because athletes with more body fat tend to excel in swimming or because swim training does not reduce body fat levels as much as other aerobic activity, or because swimmers eat more than other endurance athletes." (Personally, I agree with #2 & #3, but not #1.)

    "When researchers matched body fat percentages in endurance athletes against finishing times, they found that the men and women with the leanest bodies were also the fastest."

    "Body fat makes only a minimal positive contribution to endurance performance ... any excess body fat beyond the essential required for health worsens endurance performance ... performance increases as body fat is lost because of gains in efficiency ... As body fat goes down, aerobic capacity goes up because muscle has less competition from fat tissue for oxygen and fuel."

    "The greatest weight management challenge that competitive swimmers face is that of increasing swim specific strength and power, which typically requires gaining some muscle ... The benefits of pure muscle strength and power are greater in swimming than in every other endurance sport except rowing." (1997 study of Greek national team)

    "At the elite level, every sport evolves in the direction of effective innovation and in the last decade or so, one of the most significant innovations in elite swimming is a much greater commitment to strength training."

    I have to now read the chapters on balancing energy sources, nutrient timing, managing appetite, training for racing weight, and the role of supplements.

    NYT Journal:

    I'm just catching up on this a couple weeks late, but there was an interesting short article in the NYT Magazine about how endurance athletes are "internally fit." Apparently, exercise has an anti-aging effect at the molecular level. The fitter a person was in middle age, the younger their cells were (found by measuring telomeres and telomerase activity).
    Swim Workouts