View RSS Feed

Recent Blogs Posts

  1. AWYY January 2017 Workouts 1/9/17- 2/1/17

    by , January 5th, 2017 at 06:43 PM (AWYY Masters)
    As always our actual weekly workouts may deviate from the plan below based on actual in the water progress and the need to modify focus for meets and group and individual goals

    Monday 1/9/17 ~2600yds POWS –Pool Open Water Swim (each lap ~ 70yds)

    DO NOT touch the wall or bottom (except for dolphin diving) for the entire workout. If you need to rest: tread water, or use your recovery stroke, e.g. backstroke, breast, side, etc.

    For this workout the lane lines are removed and buoys placed in the pool. Swimmers swim continuous counter-clockwise laps

    The rest interval (RI) between sets is the time it takes for you to take your goggles completely off/on while treading water in the deep end.

    Feet 1st deep water entry, surface and tread

    Warm Up
    1 lap; Swim under water to shallow, dolphin dive to bottom, push off bottom, surface and repeat until you can no longer touch the bottom.

    Drills Bilateral/Weak Side Breathing/Breath Control
    5 laps alternate B2- left /and B3 (or B3/ B4 left) , RI= goggles on/off
    5 laps alternate B2- right / and B3 (or B3/ B4 right) , RI= goggles on/off

    Main Set/ Drills
    10 laps Blind with Sighting. Focus on sighting for all laps. Swim blind (with your eyes closed). Lift your head with eyes just above the surface. Open your eyes and take a quick snapshot of your sighting target, without interrupting your stroke rhythm. Separate the sighting stroke from the breathing stroke. Sight and then collapse into your stroke.

    4 laps alternate FAST! / EZ, RI= goggles on/off
    3 laps alternate FAST! Free-blind / backstroke, RI= goggles on/off
    3 laps alternate FAST! Free blind / breaststroke, RI= goggles on/off

    Optional – Group Swim
    2 laps drafting; Follow the swimmer in front as close as possible without touching them, or follow them just to one side of their hip sight off of their bubbles. Switch lead swimmer on 2nd lap

    2 laps group sprint: everyone gets side by side and sprints while staying next to each other in tight formation. On the second lap, start again but switch the other swimmers with inner swimmers.

    Cool Down
    2 laps choice EZ

    Wednesday 1/11/17 2600yd IM-Sprint

    Warm Up

    100 Choice

    4 x 100 (done as: kick / swim by 25); #1= flutter kick / free, #2=br kick/ breast, #3= back kick/ back, # 4= dolphin kick/ fly

    Main Set / Drills
    4 x 100 Reverse IM, 0:15RIn (free-breast-back-fly)
    1 x 100 (fly one-arm drill / fly by 25)
    3 x 200 IM, 0:15RI
    1 x 100 (back “L” drill / back by 25)
    2 x 300 IM, 0:15RI
    1 x 100 (breast 2 kick per one-pull drill / breast by 25)

    Cool Down
    200 Choice

    Monday 1/16/17 2450yds IM-Endurance

    Warm Up

    200 Choice

    1 x 400 IM kick (100 dolphin kick, 100 flutter kick on back, 100 breast stroke kick, 100 flutter kick on stomach)
    4 x 150 (done as 50 drill / 50 swim/ 50 drill)
    1= Catch Up Drill / free/ Catch Up Drill
    2= Chin Surf / fly / Chin Surf
    3= Elbow Snap/ breast/ Elbow Snap
    4= Shoulder Roll/ back/ Shoulder Roll

    Main Set / Drill
    10 x 25 fly, 0:30RI focus on timing and good form
    1 x 100 Free pull
    1 x 250 Back, focus on good form and turns
    1 x 100 Free pull
    1 x 250 Breast, focus on good form and turns
    1 x 100 Free pull

    Cool Down
    200 Choice

    Wednesday 1/18/17 2700yd Sprint-Free

    Warm Up

    3 x 100 Reverse IM, 0:15RI (free-breast-back-fly)

    4 x 50 (done as 25 sprint kick / 25 free EZ), 0:10RI

    Main Set
    12 x 25 sprint, 0:30RI
    3 x 100 (25 FAST! / 75 EZ), 0:10RI
    6 x 50 Descend 1-3, 4-6, 0:15RI
    3 x 100 (50 FAST! / 50 EZ), 0:10RI
    3 x 100 Sprint, 0:15RI
    1 x 200 Negative Split
    1 x 200 Build

    Cool Down
    300 non-free


    Monday 1/23/17 2700yd Mid Dist IM/Free

    Warm Up
    200 Choice

    1 x 400 IM Kick

    Main Set
    1 x 200 IM
    1 x 200 Free, good effort
    1 x 100 One Arm (50 left / 50 right), 1=fly, 2=back, 3= breast, 4=free

    Cool Down

    100 Choice


    Wednesday 1/25/17 > 3100yds Grab Bag

    This workout is an eclectic mix of drills and sets to add some spice and variety to our typical workouts.

    Warm Up

    1 x 200 (B3/B5 by 50, i.e. Breathe every 3 strokes, and then every 5 strokes for each 50)


    8 x 25 Blind. The goal here is to identify which way you tend to veer, left or right, and to make adjustments to balance out your stroke for straighter swimming (this can be invaluable in open water). EZ swim down the center lane with your eyes closed. Count how many strokes you can take before touching the lane line. Continue to the wall with eyes closed making small adjustments to your stroke mechanics to keep you going straight. If you can do one length straight down the middle of the lane, then reinforce this (to establish consistency) on the remaining lengths.

    2 x 25 Scull with Pull Buoy

    2 x 25 Backwards Swim. Swim feet first down the lane. There may be some trial and error here to figure out how to put it in reverse in the pool.

    2 x 25 Shark Fin Drill. Swim freestyle. During the recovery phase of the stroke, slide your thumb up along your side to your arm pit. Pause with your thumb in your arm pit and then continue the stroke to the entry.

    2 x 25 Tombstone Kick. Flutter kick while holding the kickboard vertically with at least 2/3 of it underwater to maximize resistance.

    2 x 25 Free with Pull Buoy at Ankles.

    2 x 25 Water Polo (dribble/ shoot). Dribble ball to shallow end and back. Dribble by swimming freestyle heads up maintaining control of the ball without touching it (keep it between your arms). At the deep end take one shot into the goal.

    2 x 25 Backstroke Goggle Balance. Lay your goggles on your forehead (no strap) and swim backstroke focusing on maintain stationary head control

    2 x 25 Breaststroke Tennis Ball Drill. Tuck the tennis ball under your chin and hold it in place while swimming breaststroke

    2 x 25 Fly with Underwater Recovery. Focus on the push phase of the fly stroke by swimming butterfly but ending a strong push phase by keeping your hands in the water and sneaking them back to the front. The end of the push should coincide with a strong kick, as your head comes out of the water

    2 x 25 Paddle Head. Place the paddle at the top of your head and swim freestyle. The goal is to not lose the paddle by lifting your head, and keeping enough pressure on it to hold it in place.

    2 x 100. Swim freestyle with a 360 summersault mid-pool and flip turns at each wall

    4 x 25yd IM. Put all four competitive strokes into each 25yd length of the pool. This may mean that you’ll only be taking 2-3 arm strokes for each stroke (fly, back, breast, free)

    Main Set
    12 x 25 Free, 0:20RI. Swim EZ to middle of pool then sprint the last half of the pool, taking your last breath before the flags (i.e. flags to wall = no-breath zone)

    Predict your finishing time for each set and each round of the following. The Rest Interval changes with each of the 3 rounds as follows:
    1st Round = 10 Pop-Ups (in water push ups on edge of deck),
    2nd Round = 10 seconds of Vertical kicking –hands at sides,
    3rd Round = 10 seconds of Vertical Kicking –Hands out of water
    1 x 100 Free, RI
    1 x 100 breast, RI
    1 x 100 back, RI
    4 x 25 fly, 0:30 rest

    1 x 300 Choice, good effort

    Cool Down
    (Number of Strangers in the Water) x 100 Choice. Unless you just want more laps this is your chance to get to know others in the pool.

    Monday 1/30/17 2800yd Free-End

    Warm Up/ Drills

    2 x 100 (50 pull /50 kick), 0:15RI

    Main Set
    4 x 200 Descend, 0:15RI
    3 x 300 Build, 0:15RI
    2 x 400 Steady, 0:15RI

    Cool Down
    100 non-free

    Wednesday 2/1/17 2600yd Free-Endr

    Warm Up

    1 x 200 (increase breathing pattern by on per 50, e.g. B2L/B3/B4L/B5)


    4 x 100 (done as 50 drill/ 50 free)
    1= flutter kick, 2= finger tip drag, 3= thumb scrape, 4 = fist drill

    Main Set
    1 x 100 good effort, 0:15RI
    1 x 200 good effort, 00:15RI
    1 x 300 good effort5, 0:15RI

    Cool Down

    1 x 200 non-free
    Swim Workouts , Workouts
  2. The "Prettiest Waitress @ Denny's"

    Last night was the inaugural Wednesday practice for the Libertyville Masters! It was a relatively empty pool, but it was honestly a GREAT practice for me! I couldn't make Tuesday night's practice due to other (wasted) obligations so I was excited to not have to wait until Thursday night's practice.

    Yesterday I worked a little later than I expected to. So by the time I got home at 5:30, I realized that if I ate and then went to the gym and lifted as usual I would have less than an hour of recovery before swim practice. Now - I'm not REALLY that concerned about being slow at practice. I've been that for months now. I am however concerned with feeling like crap during practice because my muscles couldn't recover before another assault on them.

    That was probably the best choice I could've made last night!

    So I ate supper at 5:30ish, played drums for about an hour, and then started packing BECAUSE I GET TO MOVE INTO MY OWN PLACE! and left for practice around 7:45ish. So getting to practice - I was already hungry, I forgot a water bottle, and I was really tired. Even with all of those factors - I must've still brought my swimming "A" game.

    I was the "fastest of the slow lanes" (hence the title) last night! It was a pretty big difference too! I was getting back on average 5-7 seconds faster per lap than anyone else. So when we did a 12x100 set, I was getting back between 10 and 15 seconds faster than anyone else in the "slow lanes".

    It was a pretty cool feeling! I've definitely been getting faster - but I was coming in on 1:35/1:40 at the end of that 12x100 set! I think comparatively at the beginning of summer I was coming in on 1:50/2:00 for my 100s..... wait a minute.... This is really just hitting me like a ton of bricks (you're getting the raw data from the brain to the fingers here). We just switched from SCM to SCY. <Sigh>

    Alright - well it doesn't change the fact that I'm still the prettiest waitress at my own Denny's. Hopefully tonight will give me more opportunities to really rock it out in the pool. Since I'll be apartment hunting - I don't know if I'll get a good chance to do my lift tonight (again :-/). Its okay though - as long as I can get my swim in the night is not a total loss.

    Up next - my excitement for the SCY Season increases as some of the first meets are being put on the board!
    Swim Workouts
  3. Long-course Saturday

    I went to the early-morning LCM workout at Asphalt Green. Once again, I saw tons and tons of people milling around near the park during my cab ride over. I have been wondering each of the last few weeks why so many folks are out on the street at 5:45 on a weekend morning, but I have finally solved the mystery: they are waiting in line to wait in line for free Shakespeare in the Park tickets. Apparently Central Park is officially closed until 6 am (who knew?!), at which point all these folks stream into the park to camp out and wait until tickets are distributed at 1 for that night’s performance. Mystery solved!

    Here’s the workout I did this morning:

    500 lcm warmup

    8 x 50 FR (25 heads up / 25 dps)

    8 x 50 BK w/ 15m uw kick off walls [I actually managed to get close to 15m underwater, and experimented with different angles off the wall]

    100 sculling

    100 easy

    Vertical kicking (flutter): :10 kick / :10 rest / :20 kick / :20 rest / :30 kick

    200 reverse IM drill

    400 FR pull, negative split

    Vertical kicking (dolphin): :10 kick / :10 rest / :20 kick / :20 rest / :30 kick

    200 reverse IM drill

    400 FR pull

    12 x 100 FR: 4 @ 1:50, 4 @ 1:45, 4 @ 1:40 [I did every 4th one FR/BK]

    Warmdown: 8 x 50, 2 @ :55, 2 @ 1:00, 2 @ 1:05, 2 @ 1:10

    I am feeling pretty tired and sore today, and more just did this workout rather than looking for specific opportunities to work on my individual goals. I did get in some good work on the 50s backstroke, and used the final 12 x 100 to think about my upcoming 2m OW race.
  4. Mellow Friday morning workout

    I went to the morning AGUA lcm workout. It was not very crowded today—I started in a lane with 6, then switched to one with 4. Here’s what we did:

    800 lcm warmup

    3 x (3 x 50 DR + 100 build), odd rounds FR, evens ST

    150 easy / lane change

    4 x 100 kick (2 FR, 2 BR) @ 2:10-2:30 [this was actually a swim set involving build 75s + 25 easy that I adapted]

    2 x (3 x 150 @ 3:00 + 2 x 50 easy) [This was a free set, but I did IMs on the 150s the first time through and ST/FR/ST, IM order the 2nd time through.]

    50 fast backstroke

    250 warmdown

    At sunset last night I went down to the pretty little track in Riverside park and took some baby steps towards restarting a plyo routine. This cinder track is 220 yards around, with very sharp turns at the ends, and gets limited use. It’s ideal for doing short sprint pieces of about 40-50 yards or so. I ran a few laps to warmup, then 3 x 40 sprints (going 75, 85, and 90 percent of max speed), then 3 x 40 of unspecialized skipping. I haven’t done any plyo since spring of 2009, so I’m trying to be pretty cautious and patient as I build back up to doing some power leg work. It’s always tempting to do more, because skipping and sprinting feels so fun!

    Off to the gym now for weights. It’s amazing how deciding to swim shorter events at Zones has made me more excited about lifting and building strength and power!
  5. I can't have this "no practice" thing again.

    So I haven't been allowed to swim since last Tuesday. Last Wednesday I had two warts sliced off (what an experience!) and was told by my coach "You're not swimming" on Thursday, and practice was canceled on Sunday due to issues with scheduling at the high school. That caused my eating schedule to be thrown completely out the window (including my diet plan), my sleeping habits to be totally jacked, and my workouts to be cut off. By today I just feel kind of icky all over.

    So I did a lot of things last weekend I'm not proud of:
    1) Eating after I'm full
    2) Sat and just watched TV (causing more of #1)
    3) Didn't drink enough water
    4) Barely got in any sort of a workout this weekend.
    5) Didn't get enough rest

    I did however manage to pull together a few things I am VERY proud of this weekend:
    0) I was there a great friend on Friday night and helped her out when she needed a me.
    1) I only had a two beers last week.
    2) I avoided all of the cookies, cake, cupcakes, and frosting that was more or less shoved in my face all weekend.
    3) I managed to get in at least 15 minutes of abs on Sunday, which is better than nothing
    4) I actually took some time to PLAY in a pool, (not a lap pool) something I hadn't done in literally years!

    So after a nearly sleepless weekend and a lot of bad eating, we're back to the good ol' structure of Monday and getting back on the wagon.

    So questions for all of you:
    What do you do when you get in that "graze" mode? How do you fight it and get out of it?
    How do you maintain a a structure when you don't have a pool?
    What's your cheat? When you need to break from the norm and have a really "bad for you" meal, what do you eat?

    And completely off topic:
    What's your next meet/OW event? Mine's the Park Ridge 1500 on June 26th