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  1. Sunday, Sept. 9, 2012 1:00-2:30pm at the Y

    by , September 9th, 2012 at 06:48 PM (Fast Food Makes for Fast Swimming!)
    Sunday...yes, that's right...Sunday. There is now lap swim sessions available at the eastside YMCA pool after many many comment cards dropped "anonomously" in different colored pens, using right hand, left hand, kids penmanship, etc. HA just kidding. But I did put one comment card suggesting they think about opening a Sunday session. Well, it worked. Beginning today, and continuing through the spring, they will open a 2 hour block with 3 lap lanes and 3 lanes-worth of public swim (with the diving board in the deep tank as well). The turnout was pretty good. In the 1 1/2 hours I was there, I probably counted 9-10 lap swimmers, and about 30-35 people there for public swim. Not everyone was there at the same time, but it was a good showing for the first Sunday offered. Hopefully they will keep it going.


    My swim

    500 Free (100 Free/25 Back)
    400 Free Pull
    300 Kick w/ board
    200 IM Drill (the fly)
    100 Fly Swim

    Main Set:
    6 x 100 Free @ 1:20 (1:09ish)
    8 x 75 Free @ 1:00 (:53-:55s)
    10 x 50 Free @ :40 (:34-35s)
    12 x 25 Alt. Free/Fly @ :30

    Jared came late today (car problems), and warmed up while I did:
    100 Breast Kick w/ board just to relax my calf muscle that was feeling tense.

    6 x 175 Free Pull @ 2:30 (1:58-2:02s)
    I could've stepped up the interval to have less rest, but why? This was MY workout today, not the coaches, so I'll enjoy my least until tomorrow night.

    150 EZ and out

    4800 Yards

    Not too shabby for a "solo" workout at the Y. I was circle swimming with another guy (Jeff) that usually trys to do 1/2 of the distances of all my workouts/sets, so it kept other lap swimmers from trying to "share" the lane.


    Oh, and with today's workout, I've now eaten up the almost 9 mile deficit I was facing last week in GTD. Isn't it great!!

    My Go The Distance 2012 goal: 500.00 mi. Progress towards goal:

    Congratulations! You are on pace for achieving your goal this year:
    My goal pace: 346.58 miles required as of today to reach my goal by the end of the event
    My actual current pace: 346.91 miles as of today

    Updated September 9th, 2012 at 07:13 PM by jaadams1

    Swim Workouts , Daily Practices
  2. NBAC Meet, Sunday, Sept. 9

    by , September 9th, 2012 at 03:56 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    I woke up at 5:45 am today. This bears repeating. I, Leslie Livingston, woke up at 5:45 am today. I don't recall complaining about it either. I just made sure Jimby was awake and headed straight to the coffee machine. 20 minutes later Jazzy arrived and I was still guzzling caffeine and trying to eat something. Normally, I would never have considered journeying to a meet at this ungodly hour. But Jimby needed some succor and companionship in his quest to garner his first ever AA time in the 100 free. This was his third attempt at the event. Before this meet, he stood two hundredths of a second off Greg Shaw's time from Omaha. Who knew that a self described weak minded person had this much persistence?

    Anyway, we made the hour plus trek to Baltimore without getting lost. I warmed up in the indoor short course meter pool. I saw no point in getting in the long course pool except to check out the backstroke blocks. Unfortunately, I checked the wrong end, the eight foot deep end, forgetting 50s start at the other end in long course. Just another reason long course sucks.

    I hadn't entered 50 free, so happily had some time to continue to wake up. Jimby swam the 50 free and improved his time slightly. Plagued by elbow issues too, Jazz did a 50 flutter kick, posting a 41. This put the thought in my head that I would just kick a 50 back for time, not worrying about the 15 meter mark. Having only rested a couple days and swimming in an inferior pool, I figured I wouldn't be very close to my Omaha time.

    So I wandered over to the correct end of the pool for 50s. Looked down, four feet at that end. WTF. I told Mollie Grover I would likely crash. Take your mark, crash. Well, maybe not a total crash, but an abrupt graze with a seemingly dead stop. I readjusted, went a few more feet and then grazed the bottom again. So much for people telling me I can train and compete in four feet deep pools ... But no matter! I persisted in my 50 kick for time. I went a little less than 3/4 of the pool underwater, maybe 40 kicks. I suspect I could have gone farther if I had not lost some momentum from the grazings or felt like pushing it more. Anyhoo, came up, noticeably slowing down flutter kicking on the surface, and touched in 35.2. This is less than 3 seconds slower than my Omaha time. So I'm thinking it's a decent 50 kick time -- especially given that the pool bit me twice. It would be fun to try it again in a deeper pool.

    Oddly, very oddly, I was not DQ'd. At least no official approached me telling me I was DQ'd. Maybe they didn't see me? (Jazz video'd and said it was quite modernist with me missing for most of the vid.) I had planned to tell the referee that I would blast well past the 15 meter mark, but he was way down at the far end with the starter. I have never actually been at a meet where the starter was not at the start end ... These MD Series meets are, er, unique. But I really enjoyed both of them that I did this summer.

    On to the 50 fly. Whoops, too busy chatting away with Jazz (about lifting) and Jimby and Skip (about various swimming topics). I saw my heat behind the blocks and didn't feel inclined to race over to try to make it. 50 breast was just minutes later anyway.

    50 breast. Had kind of a sloppy entry, but otherwise everything seemed decent enough (who can really tell with this stroke?). I didn't really think about kicking hard until the last bit of the race. When one never does evil kick, one forgets to focus on it in a race ... Still, I went a 39.1, which is only .1 slower than Omaha. Not bad for no taper and doing weights earlier in the week. I like the 50 evil in long course. I am never tired afterward. This probably comes from not really using my legs much and getting to breath all the time. I was all ready for the 50 fly after that easy race.

    But now it was time for Jimby's much anticipated 100 free, which I'm sure he'll blog about later, probably in a tldr format. He was simply masterly. Good start and breakout, a controlled first 50 and just hammered it home the second 50 with good tempo the whole way. He need to go faster than a 1:02.66 to claim the current fastest spot and he went a sizzling 1:01.4. Out to lunch after. Much fun had all around. Though I feel I should still do a speed workout tomorrow.
  3. 29 happy 29 sad

    by , September 9th, 2012 at 03:41 PM (Chowmi's Blog)
    LCM, SMU outdoor pool

    400 warm up

    12 x 50 on 1:00
    12.5 kick/easy swim
    25 kick/easy swim
    37.5 kick/easy swim
    repeat 4 times.

    2 x 300 pull on 5:00
    ==> NO! went to diving well and did Modified Fort sprints: this was a sampler of her workout with speed work from the middle of the pool.
    3 rounds:
    "25" from a running start;
    turn around, scull slightly off wall, take 3 breaths, then
    "25" from a dead start back to the wall in 1 breath.
    I really liked this, but didn't have that much time. I need a lot of rest, and could only do 3 w/in the 10 minutes.

    Rejoined the group....

    10 x 50's on :50/1:20
    1st 50: make the interval;
    2nd 50: blasto first 25, easy 25.
    emphasis was on "back half" sprinting when you are not entirely fresh from that first 50.

    Fast 50 on coach's watch

    The End
    I have no idea why I set my target times the way they are. I was very happy with a SCM 29 from a wall dive on Friday, yet today I did a bonus LCM 50 at the end of workout on coach's watch, went 29.7 (same as last week) and was disappointed. You would think I should be happier with the LCM 29, but for some reason I am quite disappointed.

    Bobby said my head was too low on the first 1/3 and I was having to plow my way down the pike. I guess I should not dip so low but also not just raise my head. I was also pretty tired. I think I need to start doing the fast bits in the middle or at the beginning of workout when I am fresh, and then maybe a 2nd effort at the end. I was happy with the breathing (3) with the last coming right past the 12.5m line.

    Next up: This week will try to get to SCM 28 in workout. If I can stay disciplined, maybe take 1 workout and do 4 x 50's on 10 min or so to attempt this aggressive goal. I'll also do some fly sprinty bits, continuing a long trek back to fly shape.
  4. Kids meet yesterday

    by , September 9th, 2012 at 02:36 PM (Mixing it up this year)
    Did get a warm up before the kids warmed up and then did manage 200 yards before my 100 Fly but this was not enough to loosen up completely. Had to watch my kids swim too but I was pleased with the time which was a 1:27.06. This was done in an old polyester suit too.

    I had one of my swimmers in the lane next to me and she was ahead of me most of the swim but I managed to pull it out in the end. I always tell my kids your first goal is to BEAT COACH! I always tell my older faster swimmers that there is no excuse for them not making intervals that this old 50 year old can make when they can beat me in a race.

    Updated September 9th, 2012 at 02:43 PM by Donna

  5. Maui Channel Swim 2012

    by , September 9th, 2012 at 01:30 PM (Random Nonsense)

    Let me start by saying I give really good advice, frequently excellent advice, and when I give you advice, you should take it. More importantly, make sure I plan on following my own advice.

    I am getting ahead of my self, untaken self advice is towards the end of the story, but important enough to mention first. Back around the time I was doing the Waikiki Roughwater, Coach Anna said that she wanted to do the Maui Channel Swim, a relay of six people who swim from Lanai to Maui with the aid of a guide boat. Like a good little swimmer, I nodded my head and said sure and continued on with my ignoring-the-coach thing I occasionally do.

    Strangely, Anna kept mentioning the Maui Channel Swim (MCS). She mentioned it so many times over a long enough period that I thought she might be serious, unlike when she says "kick with no flippers". About this time she had also convinced me that I was in charge of organizing the relay, head coach Dave independently seconded this idea and I nodded my head like a good little swimmer and started recruiting.

    In November the relay became official when I mentioned it to Dennis, who went home and mentioned it to Molly, who said something along the lines of "If you have to be eaten by a shark for me to have a Maui vacation, so be it" and promptly booked his tickets.

    By Christmas we had a half dozen people interested, and by June we had almost the same half dozen signed up.

    Dallas Aquatic Masters (DAM) has sent relays for 21 years, so instead of finding a boat, organizing hotel rates and doing a whole lot of work I am too lazy to do, we just signed up through DAM. The DAM rate at the Sheraton was better than any other comparable hotel rate, they provided us with a boat captain we were very happy with and they did all the paperwork and money handling for the MCS side of things. Pretty darn easy.

    As relay organizer, I did do a fair bit of research on estimating trip cost, when to buy airfare, if the Sheraton deal was the best price, what we needed to worry about and when relay organizer became team captain I attended to paperwork requests, phone calls to the boat captain, attending meetings and paying the captain. My only organization failure was not keeping everyone up to date when times kept changing and in the future, I would know to just publish the official times of all the meetings the day before they happen since they moved around by an hour and that hour is only important the day of the meeting, not two weeks before.

    The stars aligned, and we all trickled into Maui free of injury. The DAM "organized" practice swims off black rock are really times when lots of swimmers will be in the water, so I ended up leading 3 practice swims for our relay. During no single practice swim did we have all 6 team mates because of flight and tour schedules, but there was nothing critical we all needed to be present for at the same time. I am not sure how restful a vacation this trip was to Maui for most of my teammates, because some of them packed their schedules with activities, but I think everyone enjoyed their time in Maui, and touring didn't impact anyones swim.

    Saturday morning, time to get on the boat! Four swimmers were staying in the hotel and two were staying somewhere else, so the hotel swimmers met in the lobby at 6am to head to the boat ramp to meet everyone else about 6:30 to load the boat and wait for it to be launched. We were on the road by 6:02, loaded the boat and headed to starbucks for a coffee until 6:45, the estimated launch time. By the time we got back to the ramp (the Starbuck's really is a block away), Captain Lee had launched and was waiting for us, "patiently", as we took pre race pictures.

    OH! Our team name! (Skip if you really only care about the swim) Dennis was the first to book (via his lovely wife Molly who could care less if Dennis actually swam if she got to go to Maui), but about that time he started a new company. This company happened to be a fire and water damage company and their clients usually notice their house has been flooded, after the get home from work... which means late nights. Good news, Dennis' business is doing quite well, bad news is all their business is usually until late at night and he doesn't have anyone trained that he trusts to be first on site yet. So Dennis stopped showing up at the 5am practices a few weeks after signing up for the race. In early August, we have a prerace party... and Dennis doesn't make it because of a call that came in. His wife and kids made it to the party... and approved of the name. Team Where's Dennis?!

    It is about 6:50 and we make the 25 minute boat ride over to Lanai, the weather is beautiful and the seas are calm. We chatted with Captain Lee a bit about currents, our route, how we want to do transitions and how conditions will change as throughout the swim. The night before he gave me really good directions on how to swim into the Lanai since the swim into the beach hasn't been dredged in years, the channel is very narrow, there is lots of coral and we were at low tide. Keeping this advice in my I headed off to the beach, and did notice while swimming in that even the channel was incredibly shallow.

    After an easy swim into the beach, I walked up to the beach and noticed my first mistake as I turned around to look at the boats. I switched to a new sun screen the morning of the race, and the new sunscreen left a haze on my goggles that I could not wash off in the sea water. Looking into the sun was very much like a sun flare in a photography, with the sun blurred across my vision and everything else left in a shadow. If I was looking forward, I could only see outlines of boats, but looking anywhere else, my vision was fine. Of course the start is directly into the sun, and was now completely dependent on my boat finding me.

    [nomedia="][IMG][/IMG"]Anna pre race announcement MCS 2012 - YouTube[/nomedia]

    This year's start was a water start for the first time, we lined up waist deep in the water at the end of the dock, a flag was waved and off we went. A thirty minute swim was no big deal for me, I had done a few 30 minute swims, 3k continuous and hour swims to become comfortable with long duration swims. What was really disconcerting was when I was 10 minutes into the swim looking for my boat and I kept seeing the same boat off to my right, after passing mosts boats quickly. I am pretty sure someone took their 100ft yacht out to watch the start of the race either on purpose or by chance, but I never thought I would get past it. A few minutes after passing the Queen Mary 2, my boat found me! Yeah, I can stop trying to sight into the sun!

    With the boat in sight, things get pretty easy, just try to keep the Captain in sight and I am heading in the right direction. If I am looking at the bow, then I am heading too far north and probably away from the boat and if I am looking at the motors, I am going to run into the boat. This works pretty well if you and the boat can match pace, and it worked fine for me.

    After following the boat for only a couple minutes, Anna signals me that there is only 5 minutes left and our signals are 8"x11" numbers stapled into a folder. I assume that I just didn't see the 1, and I have 15 minutes left.

    Four minutes later the boat pulls away to drop Joe, the next swimmer, off in front of me. Right around the 30 minute mark, Joe tags me and I take off swimming towards the boat, climb in and take a seat.

    That wasn't bad at all. I yet again was really surprised no one else wanted the first leg, I was the only one who has actually set foot on Lanai. What also surprised me was how many people took off faster than I did at the start, I was no where near the head of the pack. A lot of time was probably wasted trying to connect with the boat and if I did it over again, I would just head north after coming out of the channel and let the boat captain know that was my strategy. We had none, and I just swam towards the boats hoping for the best.

    As the first swimmer, I now have 2.5 hours before I swim again and am fairly tired after my 30 minute swim so grab a seat at the back of the boat watching Joe followed by Dennis. I sunscreen immediately, and have a bottle of water during this time. After Anna goes in and I help Dennis up the ladder and stow it, I am feeling a little sea sick. I head to the cooler, grab a gatorade and take a non-drowsy dramamine.

    Advice: Everyone on the relay got a sea sickness patch, and everyone followed the recommendations to put it on the day before... except me. I sent out the video to my team to convince everyone to get the patch, and I ignored the advice because it was supposed to be smooth this year. It was smooth this year. Nice smooth rolling 4-6 foot swells. My advice to everyone considering the MCS, GET THE PATCH, put it on 24 hours ahead of time.

    Five minutes later: "Oh crap, I am going to pop" running to the back of the boat, hand over mouth trying to hold back my gatorade colored vomit before I actually get to the side and empty my stomach. Good news, it was all liquid that I drank since being on the boat. Bad news, probably another 4.5 hours in the sun with 30 minutes of intense swimming without being able to keep fluids down. I am now mildly concerned that I am jeopardizing the relay finishing and my health.

    As far as sea sickness goes, my problem was mild, I just couldn't tolerate anything in my stomach. Once I emptied my stomach, I didn't feel great, but I wasn't hanging over the side green in the face either. So I manned the ladder waiting for my next swim to come up. There was some concern about me swimming, but I pointed out I was much more comfortable swimming than sitting on the boat.

    About 5 minutes before my swim, I suggested that we pull well ahead of Chris (who was in the anchor spot), and I would drink a water then toss the bottle back in the boat. I knew dealing with stomach cramps are a non-issue compared with dealing with dehydration. This worked ok, but Chris' leg was in quite tough conditions, so I got very little time in the water with some water before she caught up. Going much further ahead and she would have difficulty sighting in the swells.

    10 minutes of bliss. No cramps, the swells had gotten progressively bigger now that we were outside the protection of the Lanai shallows and the wind picked up a lot to create some chop. Fun swimming for me and about 5 minutes into it, I realized I wasn't pulling my weight at that my pace and stepped it up quite a bit.

    After finishing my swim and climbing into the boat, my water bottle and gatorade that I didn't finish before my swim are nearby so I resetup near the ladder and am good for about 45 minutes. During one of the transitions as I put the ladder up, the Captain kicks the boat into gear, I get knocked back with my shin pressing the steel rod connecting the two engines, the captain makes a hard turn slicing a 3" gash into my shin. Not a banner day. I put some vaseline on it, cut man style, and hope to minimize the chumming. It is very shallow, so it doesn't bleed much, but I didn't think to pack anything to accelerate clotting, so the vaseline will have to do.

    Right before going in again, I think I was video taping or something, my stomach does a somersault and I am at the back of the boat again. My swim starts in about 3 minutes from that point, I grab a bottle of water to rise and jump over the side to start my swim. Good to be back in the water!

    At this point the swells are dying down and other than the occasional wind induced whitecap, the swimming is the easiest it has been for me since the start.

    The water is crystal clear, but the ocean is so incredibly deep between the islands that all that you can see is a deep dark blue. It is beautiful, and enjoyable if you find swimming in the swells enjoyable, but I don't think any of my relay saw any sea life during the race. Most of us did experience some small stings during our swims that were probably from little jelly fish, but the pain went away before any of us were out of the water just leaving a short line of red marks where we were hit.

    After another enjoyable 10 minutes in the water, I was back on the boat and we can start to see land marks. At this point the sea is pretty calm, my dramamine might have kicked in and seeing the end in sight, I actually feel good. Really good. Seemingly all the sudden I am up walking around the boat, chattering away, talking about swimming a group finish, who is going to be the one to finish and really enjoying the last 30 minutes.

    Advice: Get the sea sickness patch. Put it on 24 hours before. Enjoy the ENTIRE race.

    We all agree that we will swim to the finish together and by our time, I will be the one person who has to official run up the beach to the finish table. I want to finish as a group so I hang back and swim with the everyone into the beach, then I am off and running to the table. The finish is quite confusing because the finish table is setup in front of the boat lane, and since they had a boat run over a swimmer last year, they kept the table in the same spot, but moved the swim up buoys about 50 yards north so the water buoys don't line up with the flags of the chute in the least. Luckily, we weren't going to time, and there was someone to point down the beach to where the finish chute was.

    Grabbed a celebratory water at the finish desk and headed back to hang out on the beach with the team and our families.

    Even vomiting over the side of the boat, this was still an incredibly fun swim. The time flew by both in the water and on the boat.

    Notes on the swim:

    - Direct distance from start to finish: 9.85 miles
    - Estimated swim distance: 12 miles (my estimate)
    - Estimated swim time: 6 hours
    - Actual swim time: 5:04:35
    - Actual swim distance: 10.7 miles (garmin on the boat)
    - Start time from Lanai: 8am
    - Leave from Mala Ramp Maui: 6:50am
    - only food I saw consumed on the boat: water, gatorade, gu, fig newtons, salt tablets
    - food on the boat: Apples, oranges, drink powder, peanuts, potato chips, cookies, energy bars, rolls.

    I am not sure our transition method was as effective as it could have been. It took a long time to get the finishing swimmer on the boat leaving the next swimmer without a guide for 2-3 minutes.

    We brought way too much on the boat.

    The fig newtons were really popular. One or two sealed packages of cookies is probably enough food. Even I wasn't hungry and most of the food bought was not eaten on the boat.

    Spray sunscreen sucks on a windy boat. The spray ends up on the boat and in your teammates eyes and mouth. Consider non-spray for the boat.

    Consider zinc oxide for the nose.

    Put on the same sunscreen on the beach before practice swims as you will use on the boat during the race. Does the sunscreen cloud your goggles, get in your eyes, etc? Address these issues before the race.

    Leave flip flops with the person who drops you off at the boat ramp. They aren't needed on the boat, and if everyone swims to the finish, no one has shoes! Beach sand is hot and not having shoes limits the post race celebration options.

    Updated September 9th, 2012 at 02:00 PM by qbrain

  6. Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012 Lake Chelan Swim Report

    by , September 9th, 2012 at 12:02 AM (Fast Food Makes for Fast Swimming!)
    Not as long as That Guy's report, so maybe it'll get read more.

    I did this OW swim traditional style - FREESTYLE. I knew 5 of the people at the event...That Guy, Dave Radcliff from Oregon, a teammate of mine Casey Hall, who is now a Tri-racer (but still excellent swimmer), and Donald Morovec from Spokane - and older gentleman who is a top notch OW swimmer.

    I lined up for the start alongside Casey and Don...knowing that they'd be the leaders, and honestly not knowing where I'd be in terms of being able to hang with them or not. Don and Casey were both wearing wetsuits, and I was wearing my $20 FINIS legskins that I bought during the closeout sales the final season that the full body suits were still "masters legal". That was my first year of masters.

    I ended up sticking behind Casey about 2-3 bodylengths for the first 1/2 of the race or so, and then had to drop away. He's a phenominal OW swimmer. In the pool, I can beat him, but this wasn't a pool. Don Morovec...the OW god that he is...was so far in front of Casey that he eventually was out of my sight.

    About 10 minutes into the swim, the three of us got stopped by the sheriff's boat and told to stay inside the buoy line. Apparently we'd gotten so far "off track" that they had to come get us. We were sighting off the large trees on the end of the point that we had to go around, but apparently the buoys weren't in the same direct line as the sighting point. Oh well, I just claimed I was following the guy in front of me, and thus talked my way out of the ticket.

    After about 2/3 of the race, I had to stop to clear my goggles more and more frequently, and also it was difficult for me to sight the buoys with the overhead sun. I ended up treading water for a while to get my bearings, and then just put my head down and swam on. I knew I was falling away from Casey, but at this point I wasn't going to try to catch him, I was just worried about getting to the end of the swim.

    I got to the end, and around the final turn buoy to come into the swimming area along the shore. At this point I decided to break into butterfly, and like Mr. Guy, I found the OW fly to not be as bad as one would think. It was also nice to change muscle groups for me. My fly swim was probably 100 yards at the most, but I'll still count it.

    I was 3rd place overall, with a 35 minutes 2 seconds for my time in the 1.5 mile OW swim.
    Don Morovec was first with 32-low minutes, and Casey was second with 33 minutes 20 seconds.
    The amazing Dave Radcliff came in at just over 37 minutes for the 4th place finish, and a woman named Emily from Montana was 5th. She is also the only swimmer to swim the length of Lake Chelan (at 55 miles) which was done last summer in an attempt to raise money for a child with cancer back home.
    That Guy was 9th with his amazing 1.5 mile OW butterfly in 44 minutes.