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  1. Meet 08/06/15: USMS Nationals day 1

    by , August 6th, 2015 at 07:29 PM (Maple Syrup with a Side of Chlorine)
    Had a good night sleep and woke up before my alarm, mostly because the other swimmers in the hotel lent a hand! haha Grabbed some oatmeal and a coffee from before we hit the road to the pool, getting there a little after 7am. Once on deck, I met fellow New England swimmer Dick and his wife. We had made arrangements last night to count each other's 800, so it was nice to have that taken care of.

    I jumped in for warmups and swam 1000 metter, including one burst and cruise from the blocks while trying out the wedge blocks. After counting for Dick, who had a great swim, I went to the warmup pool (which seemed to have cooled down nicely) for a quick 200yds.

    My goal for the 800 was to take it out easy and controlled then build each 100. This was my first time swimming this event and felt good through the 350 mark before tightening up a bit. I focused on lengthening my stroke out and felt better at the 550 mark and pushed it to the finish. Felt my stomach do some flips for the last 150, so I feel like I left it all out there. Finished with a 10:56.62. I'll be interested to see the splits to see how well I stuck to my plan en route to a personal best

    Updated Splits:
    800m FREE: 10:56.62
    34.83 1:13.41 (38.58)
    1:52.70 (39.29) 2:33.54 (40.84)
    3:15.14 (41.60) 3:57.42 (42.28)
    4:40.43 (43.01) 5:22.64 (42.21)
    6:05.02 (42.38) 6:48.90 (43.88)
    7:31.55 (42.65) 8:14.51 (42.96)
    8:56.93 (42.42) 9:37.63 (40.70)
    10:18.59 (40.96) 10:56.62 (38.03)

    My plan to descend 100's didn't hold up very well, and the middle of my race was a bit slow due to my tightening up, but I am still happy with the swim. Chad from Cali came in first and had an excellent swim, his first Nationals win.

    Afterwards I met some other NEMer's before a 400yd warmdown. Preston and I spent the rest of the day exploring the area - the shortest covered bridge in America is right here in town, took a short walk at Geneva State Park, drove along the lake to Ashtabulah for lunch at Briquettes, then found the longest covered bridge in America (4th in the world), which is pictured below,as we made our way back to the hotel. After a quick pit stop, we drove around a bit, getting a pop at Ree's Soda Fountain in Gevena. I think they say pop up this way. Now I am ready for a busy day tomorrow.

    Updated August 9th, 2015 at 09:19 PM by rxleakem

    Tags: lcm, nationals
    Masters Swim Meets / Events
  2. It was 93 and humid...

    but I had to get out there. So, I started out on my bike and rode 20 miles. It was brutal because of the temp. I can’t wait for cooler weather. I almost through in the towel as for swimming in the Gulf, but the idea of any form of water lured me in. The sea was warm on top and cool about 3 feet below. Perfect for doing some hypoxic swims, but without flippers. (I know… “fins” is the terminology. I just like saying flippers.) That cool water kept me going as I would dive beneath the ocean whenever the blazing sun became too much on my skin. What a great gift from the sea gods to be able to dive across the line between the hot and cold intermittently for some relief, while also getting in some oxygen deprivation training.

    Speed was not happening, so I focused mostly on my strokes. In the free I would breathe every third stroke, also being aware of my “catch” (USMS Article). Plus I did some kicking drills, backstroke drills and breastroke. Trying to swim smarter and for distance. Well the distance was not so good…just a hair under a mile, so the sun won. Oh well tomorrow is another day. Better start out early to get ahead of that sun.
  3. USMS Summer Nationals Day 1

    by , August 6th, 2015 at 04:05 PM (After a long rest)
    I have been feeling bad for a week now with a cold and as I blogged earlier this week I was worried I would be unable to swim today. My chest congestion finally started to loosen up yesterday and I felt much better last night. I once again loaded up on mucinex and Alka seltzer nighttime cold medicine and despite not feeling stellar this morning I felt ok.

    I had delayed my positive checkin until this morning and made the call to swim the 800m at about 5am this morning. I feel ok in myself but I am unable to clear my chest. I had decided that I would just swim it and not stress out about the swim or my time. I was seeded in the last heat with a few guys I knew; Kurt Dickson, Ramses Rodriguez and Bruce Thomas along with a bunch of young guys I did not know. My plan was to swim a controlled first 400m and then see how I felt.

    The guys in lanes 4-7 went out fast including Kurt who is in my age group. At 300m I almost quit but coughed hard coming off the wall and my chest let go. I did not think anything at 400m but noticed Kurt was a body length up on me. At 500m I felt ok and decided to try to pick it up. At the turn at 600m I was ahead of Kurt. I worked hard to not tighten up and focused on my walls and keeping my stroke long. I finished with 9:18 which was an ok time(slower than world's last year) and my splits were great going 4:37,4:40. More importantly I won the 45-49 age group.

    The 800 always hurts but this one could have been a lot worse and I am so glad I did not quit at 300m. Somehow I need to find a way to stay healthy before nationals!

    Tomorrow I have just the one swim again with the 200m back. This should again be a great race with Kurt Dickson and Lee Lawrence. I hope I feel better and better as the meet goes on.
  4. 8|6|15 SCM

    50 fr easy

    DRILL 1

    15 x about 13-14M streamline pushoff and few strokes on 1:00

    DRILL 2

    10 x turn then about 13-14M streamline pushoff and few strokes on 1:00

    DRILL 3

    10 x turn in to shallow side wall starting with jump and 2 strokes (for speed) then about 13-14M of streamline pushoff and few strokes on 1:00

    DRILL 4

    10 x turn in to shallow side wall starting with jump and 2 strokes (for speed) then about 13-14M of streamline pushoff and few strokes on 0:40

    DRILL 5

    5 x turn attempts with fins on and everything completely submerged (to get legs over fast)

    A local SCY meet coming up soon, I plan to participate

    Triple bridge, Aruba
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    Diving down at Mangel Halto to boatwreak, Arubabob snorkeling tour
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  5. Easy today, tomorrow is back to LCM!

    by , August 6th, 2015 at 07:24 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Today was easy, I need that so that I can do tomorrow hard since it is LCM tomorrow. The first 400 IM felt terrible, the second one felt much better.

    500 free
    500 free kick w/zoomers
    400 IM in 7:45
    200 breast kick
    400 IM in 7:00
    5x100@1:50 free w/snorkel
    300 free kick w/zoomers
    200 free EASY

    Total 3000 yards
    Swim Workouts
  6. 1/1 work/rest ratio

    by , August 5th, 2015 at 08:36 PM (Alex's swim journal)
    Today I decided to experiment with just swimming my dream pace (1:20/100 for 1650); I've struggled mightily since 2010 to get my pace down to 1:30ish and just maintain that. I'm used to taking really short rests, swimming on really tight intervals... figuring this is the best way to go for distance events. But since I've been in an extended off-season the last 12-14 months, those tight intervals are really daunting and I feel like I'm in a rut... pace going nowhere (except maybe backwards).

    So Today I did 25s, 50s and 75s, but being very disciplined about the pace... holding back on the 25s, concentrating on form, bringing them in right at :19, same thing with the 50s, holding pace through the flip and bringing them in right at :39. 75s were tougher at that pace, but despite having to really push the final 25 on most reps I brought the odds in at :58-:59, the evens at 1:00-1:01. The other thing I did was make sure my rest interval was exactly the same as my work interval, so I did the 25s on :40, the 50s on 1:20, the 75s on 2:00... which gave me :20, :40, and 1:00 rests. This seemed like an eternity, but it helped me to maintain the pace and not deteriorate the form.

    Here's the workout:

    400 EZ FR on 8:00
    4 x 100 FR on 2:00 (1:30s)
    4 x 50 FR on 1:00 (:42-:43)
    4 x 25 FR on :30 (:20-:21)
    100 BK recovery

    Main set:
    18 x 25 on :40 (under :20)
    9 x 50 on 1:20 (under :40)
    6 x 75 on 2:00 (:58-1:01)
    1 x 100 on 2:00 (1:21)
    100 BK recovery

    250 EZ (various)

    3000 SCY/70 mins
  7. Workout 08/05/15: afternoon

    by , August 5th, 2015 at 08:07 PM (Maple Syrup with a Side of Chlorine)
    Left Vermont this morning and made it to Geneva around 4pm with my son. Traffic was smooth and I took a break every 100 miles or so to stretch out. The facility is pretty awesome, with a deep and cool 10 lane LCM main pool and a 25 yard pool available for warmups. All checked in for my races over the next two days.

    200 free/200 back/200 im drill
    3 x 100 [as 50 kick, 50 drill]
    2 x 50 b/c [first one off the blocks - thanks team Costa Rica for the whistle!)
    200 loosen and out
    (Solo/Spire/1200m/35 min)

    I made it to the pre-event meeting and now back at the hotel after eating dinner. Time to shave - haven't done this since high school! haha

    Updated August 5th, 2015 at 09:18 PM by rxleakem

    Tags: nationals
    Swim Workouts , Masters Swim Meets / Events
  8. 8|5|15 SCM

    10 x 15m fr on 1:00
    • streamlined form

    10 x 15m fr (odds) / br (evens) on 1:00
    • streamlined form / pullouts

    8 starts off the block

    1000 of various drills with / without fins
  9. Sun-Wed, Aug 2-4

    by , August 5th, 2015 at 01:20 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)


    Swim/SCY/w/ Teen Fort @ Springhill Rec

    500 various
    100 scull
    16 x 25, 15 m UW @ :45
    100 EZ
    30 x 25 fly w/fins @ :45 (12s, 8 kicks + 4 strokes, 2 breaths per length)
    -- I was actually surprised that I made it through all of these.
    100 EZ
    4 x 50 kick w/fins hold best average (26s)
    100 EZ
    4 x 25 w/chute & paddles @ 1:00
    50 EZ

    Total: 2400

    Monday: Drylands, 60 min

    Tuesday: 8 miles on treadmill

    Wednesday: Swim/LCM/Solo @ Lebo

    500 various
    4 x (25 scull + 25 free w/paddles) @ 1:10
    4 x 50 free @ 200 pace w/paddles @ 1:00
    50 EZ

    3 rounds:
    1 x 50 @ 100 pace
    1 x 50 EZ
    1 x 100 fast, break :10 @ 50
    1 x 100 EZ
    extra 50 EZ at end of set

    10 x 50 w/paddles
    odds = free @ 1:00
    evens = back @ 1:10
    100 EZ

    Total: 2500 m


    I was in northern VA over the weekend visiting Teen Fort, so I didn't work out much there. I drove back Monday straight to masters practice. On Tuesday am, Lil Fort was bitten by a dog while at cross country practice. It was a Newfoundland and the attack was totally unprovoked. So we wound up in the ER. She got 5 stitches and fainted and threw up in the process. I missed am swim and didn't want to leave her during the day, so just hopped on the treadmill and watched Worlds instead. I got to the pool today and hope to be more regular with it going forward. Hopefully, I'll do a swim + yoga tomorrow.
  10. Good Day! 08/05/2015

    by , August 5th, 2015 at 11:49 AM (Workout Swimmer)
    Not sure why I am feeling so good in the water, but I'll just take it. Swimming was effortless today. Of course, I didn't push the envelope and decide to do something crazy like 6 x 400 IM's either, but what I did do, felt great.
    Still lucky to have LCM, and fairly cool water at 0h dark thirty

    600 back/free
    400 kick
    12 x 50; 2 hard, one easy
    5 x 200 pull
    4 x 100
    4 x 300, pull no paddles, pull, swim, breast/free
    100 easy
  11. Pushing it today

    by , August 5th, 2015 at 07:25 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Did good descending set today.

    500 free
    500 free kick w/zoomers
    10x100@1:30 free w/paddles & bouy descend 1-5 and 6-10 went 1:26, 1:25, 1:24, 1:23, 1:21, 1:23, 1:22, 1:21, 1:20, 1:19
    500 free kick w/zoomers
    5x100@1:25 free w/paddles & bouy hold pace 1:20
    500 free EASY!

    Total 3500 yards
    Swim Workouts
  12. 8|04|15 SCY

    10 x 50 fr/br on 1:00 with snorkel

    10 x 50 fr on 1:00

    300 drills

    10 x 50 fr on 2:00 with fins
    • several 27's, the rest were 28's

    10 starts from the blocks

    4 x 25 flutter kick on 0:30

    More Aruba vacation stuff:

    I need to add music to the videos
  13. Week 149 - Tuesday

    by , August 4th, 2015 at 08:37 PM (After a long rest)
    I took more meds last night and again slept well but once again woke up very congested. I did a very easy 1000m this morning consisting of:

    4x100 free with snorkel
    6x50 catchup
    3x100 kick

    i am getting worried about being healthy for Thursday.
    Swim Workouts
  14. Consistantly (08/04/2015)

    by , August 4th, 2015 at 09:33 AM (Workout Swimmer)
    Inconsistent. That would describe my blogging here, lately. AND my attendance at the gym. This morning I just couldn't muster up enough desire to go to the gym OR the pool - which is odd, because I think I swam 6 out of 7 days LAST week. I went to Morcom on Saturday "by myself" and found that they have a sort of masters group that trains there with an actual coach - not that I can possibly envision myself going to Morcom more than once a week because of its location and the hours they offer, but I might, on a Saturday, join them, so I have someone to swim with, for a change. It was the last day of LCM for them, cuz FSU will start back in a couple of weeks I guess. That means Trousdale will switch over too, on the 17th. NOT looking forward to going back to SCY - not that I don't like SC, but I hate having to switch back to LC at Christmas time!! The first two weeks back LC are pure exhaustion.
    Swam 4800 LCM Saturday
    Swam 4300 LCM Yesterday
    Slept in today.
    Haven't been to weights/gym for 3 weeks.
  15. Bad back means lots of fly drill

    by , August 4th, 2015 at 07:29 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    Lack of sleep combined with a bad back... I needed some dolphin motion.

    500 free
    500 free kick w/zoomers
    250 fly scull drill w/zoomers & snorkel
    250 torque drill w/snorkel & bouy
    250 angel arm fly w/snorkel & bouy
    250 1 arm fly alt 25 rt/25 lt
    300 free kick w/zoomers
    200 free

    Total 2500 yards
    Swim Workouts
  16. Week 149 - Monday

    by , August 3rd, 2015 at 09:22 PM (After a long rest)
    I took more Alka seltzer last night and woke up really congested. I slept solid but felt like someone had sit slept on my chest all night. I have a lot of mucus build up which really really sucks. I felt ok in the water and my head cleared up quick but my chest still remained congested throughout the workout. I am still hopeful I will be ok before nationals but my body is now cutting it pretty close. Luckily I don't feel sick and I am just congested so hopefully it will clear.

    Today was setup LCM

    Warm up
    400 free with snorkel
    6x50 catchup on 1 min

    Main sets
    3x300 pull on 4:30 descend 1-3
    100 easy
    100 free from push broken at 50 with 10 seconds
    100 easy
    100 back from push broken at 50 with 10 seconds
    100 easy
    5x100 IM easy

    Warm down
    100 easy
    5 free starts

    I felt ok on the 300s other than my continued breathing challenges. I went 3:29, 3:27, 3:24. On the broken 100 free I felt slow and tired. I was out in :29 to my feet at 50 and came back in :31 going 1:00 which is ok. On the back I went :33 to my feet, and came back in :35 going 1:08 which I felt much better.

    i am trying to stay positive ahead of nationals and I really hope my chest starts to loosen up otherwise the 800 is going to miserable.
    Swim Workouts
  17. Monday 8/3/15

    400 mix up

    6 x (2 x 50 + 2 x 25)
    --50's are fast free kick @ 1:15
    --25's are over kick swim w/one breath @ 30
    --over kick sets kill me, glad it was only 25's

    4 x (3 x 75 + 1 x 50) w/fins and paddles
    --75's are free descend to sprint @ 1:10
    --50's are backstroke sprint

    3 x (200 + 4 x 50)
    --200's are non free strong r/30 (went bk,BR,br)
    --50's are free fast @ 60
    --rest 60 between rounds

    100 w/d and needed to get out

    3700 scy

    i had a really good swim until I hit the 200's. They felt good but the times weren't there. I'll take it.
  18. Battling the Elements

    There weren’t a lot of cars on the road, but it was like dodging bullets with the ones that were. One guy crossed right in front my bike in the bike lane lane to turn into a parking lot. Then he just stopped in front of me! I pulled on the reins, “Whoa Nellie”. Now for me it may as well be a body slam to put on the brakes, and drop my hard bottom cleats traveling at 15 MPh. Ugh! I didn’t fall, but I was fumin’. ( And it takes a lot for me to show I’m fumin’.) I scolded the guy and he actually apologized.

    Next, it was hot and then for the finale, just when I thought “it was safe to go into the water”, the last 10 miles before jumping in the Gulf, the ultimate destination… a squaw passed over sending 10MPH winds and hail.

    Did you ever try to ride into a strong wind? It feels like your riding in sand. I caved. No swim. I am still achy, but chopin at the bit to get in the water.
  19. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 AM Workout 08/04/2015

    by , August 3rd, 2015 at 03:54 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters GOLD Workout)
    This will be my last post until returning after Nationals

    Taper/rest workout

    WARM UP:
    6 X 50 1:00
    1 X 200 3:00
    4 X 50 1:00
    3 X 100 1:30

    4 X 75 kick 1:45
    1 X 100 swim

    1 X 50 build 1:15
    1 X 50 easy 1:15
    1 X 50 fast 1:15
    1 X 100 easy 3:00
    Three rounds--choice

    Nationals swimmers warm down

    1 X 400 6:00
    1 X 300 4:30
    1 X 200 3:00
    1 X 100 1:30
    1 X 100 1:25
    1 X 200 2:50
    1 X 300 4:15
    1 x 400 fast

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy
    Swim Workouts
  20. Workout 08/03/15: morning

    by , August 3rd, 2015 at 09:14 AM (Maple Syrup with a Side of Chlorine)
    Final swim at home this morning after a busy work weekend...

    200 free/200 back/200 im drill
    400 kick/drill by 50
    4 x 50 ~ 2min (25 AFAP, 25 easy)
    200 loosen and out
    (Solo/Rec/1400 yds/30 min)

    The water was feeling good today. Just two more long days at work then I head to Ohio on Wednesday morning, with plans to hit the Spire in the evening for a quick float and perhaps the meeting at 5pm. Saying a prayer for all those traveling to Nationals, and looking forward to the start of the road trip with my son.
    Swim Workouts