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The FAF AFAP Digest

Day 3 Nats, Aug. 6

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Finally back from a fun time in Auburn. Just a quickie blog. I'll do a recap and analysis tomorrow.

100 back, NS:

I woke up and decided not to swim it -- I was feeling pretty beat from the meet and tired from the usual "meet sleep" syndrome. I might have swum it if it were after the 50 free, but it wasn't. And I did not feel like a potential repeat of the 100 fly or a second bad decision. That is not to say that would have happened -- it's backstroke after all -- but I wasn't in the mood for a long course 100 going into my third day of nationals. No big deal -- I will do it in 2 weeks and try to claim the AA.

50 free, 2nd, 29.6:

This time is pretty good for me, given that this was my most poorly executed race in terms of the fine details. I apparently wasted my best starts on the 50/100 fly. lol. This time, I got off the block slow and did not go in through the "hole." Rather, I slapped my legs on the water and had a subpar breakout. I came up behind on the start, which rarely happens to me. And -- ouch!!! My arms and legs were screaming at me with fatigue. Water Rat told me that I had a fast turnover. I also miscalculated on the finish just a bit; I had trouble picking up the bulkhead on all my finishes. I should have glided in hard with my left hand, but instead took a short stroke. That may have cost me the win.

With these miscues on the start and turn, 29.6 seems pretty good. I perhaps could have gone a few tenths faster without them. Unlike my 50 fly, this time was at least faster than my personal worst of 30.0 last summer. I know some (Jazz, Ahelee, for example) think I can go faster. I think I can too -- if I focus more on freestyle and sprint endurance. But this may have been the fastest I could go with this summer's training and not feeling very fresh before the race. I am also having a bit of tough time telling how much of my slow down from Indy 2009 (when I was mid 28) is due to suits and how much is due to a lack of LC/sprint endurance training. With the current data points, the lack of tech suits does seem to effect me more in LC than SC.

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Commentary:

It still hasn't really sunk in that I got the WR in the 50 back! I really couldn't be more thrilled with the time and the race. And I suspect in the days to come I will be really grateful that I achieved that given this summer's training circumstances.

I have glanced at the Terrapin Cup schedule. It is an am meet, which is trickier for me, especially as it's a hike to U of Md. But I tentatively plan to swim the 200 back on Saturday for a 100 split and the 50 fly on Sunday. The idea of doing only one event per day is very appealing to me! I see that the 200 back is positive check in. Hmm ... I want to cruise in late, so may have to ask if someone can check me in. I'm feeling much more excited about swimming the 100 back then than I was yesterday! Now I have to mull over how to train next week.

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Comments

  1. jim thornton's Avatar
    Yes, Leslie! You definitely need to work on your sprint endurance.

    Might a I recommend a set of 2 x 5 m. sprints on 7 mins?

    Just joking, of course. To build up sprint endurance, you really need to do a longer distance and more reps on a shorter interval.

    Say something like this:

    3 x 6 meters on 6:30.
  2. chowmi's Avatar
    I think you had a great meet! It's nearly impossible to answer the question how much of your race was due to xyz. I think there are OTHER things, besides training, that affected your race:
    1. The 50 free is the last event of a long meet!
    2. Once you win your first national tiltle AND get a world record plus 2nd national title....let's face it....maybe, just maybe, the edge was off. So you mentally "slipped" just a bit, and just enough to have a less than stellar start and finish. Overall a solid time of course, but you already know not only in your heart-of-hearts, but for all the world to see on your blog, that you know you can do better (and so do we, by the way!)
    3. Ok, so let's break it down a bit. Bad trajectory and entry into water. Probably too shallow. Forced early breakout, and not as clean as you want. The dominos keep falling here - so you probably had to claw your way to maintain speed instead of a great surge, and as you stated, you seemed tired at the start - and whatever time you account for this, add it twice for the back end - since it cost you so dear on the front, you pay at least that much at the finish. Perhaps enough of a slight mental release at the finish where you might have made a better call on going long/short. How many tenths do you think these alone, without additional training, added to your time? And, what can you do to improve? Last, why is it so hard to see the finish?
  3. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton
    Yes, Leslie! You definitely need to work on your sprint endurance.

    Might a I recommend a set of 2 x 5 m. sprints on 7 mins?

    Just joking, of course. To build up sprint endurance, you really need to do a longer distance and more reps on a shorter interval.

    Say something like this:

    3 x 6 meters on 6:30.
    Always with the sarcasm. I honestly think training only fast or slow works fairly well for short course. As long as you add in some lactate sets, which I admittedly need to do more of. But, yes, for long course, I need more endurance. But I'm not sure I need to do generic mid D short rest sets to achieve that. I think some longer best average sets (8 x 100 @ 2:00 for example) would achieve the same thing.

    Can we plan a swim date for Sunday in Pittsburgh?
  4. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by chowmi
    I think you had a great meet! It's nearly impossible to answer the question how much of your race was due to xyz. I think there are OTHER things, besides training, that affected your race:
    1. The 50 free is the last event of a long meet!
    2. Once you win your first national tiltle AND get a world record plus 2nd national title....let's face it....maybe, just maybe, the edge was off. So you mentally "slipped" just a bit, and just enough to have a less than stellar start and finish. Overall a solid time of course, but you already know not only in your heart-of-hearts, but for all the world to see on your blog, that you know you can do better (and so do we, by the way!)
    3. Ok, so let's break it down a bit. Bad trajectory and entry into water. Probably too shallow. Forced early breakout, and not as clean as you want. The dominos keep falling here - so you probably had to claw your way to maintain speed instead of a great surge, and as you stated, you seemed tired at the start - and whatever time you account for this, add it twice for the back end - since it cost you so dear on the front, you pay at least that much at the finish. Perhaps enough of a slight mental release at the finish where you might have made a better call on going long/short. How many tenths do you think these alone, without additional training, added to your time? And, what can you do to improve? Last, why is it so hard to see the finish?
    Thanks Michelle. You are a thoughtful student of the sport of swimming!

    1. Yes, huge difference coming at the end of a long meet. It always seems like the 50 back or 50 free is the last event of a taper meet. At NE SCM Champs in Dec. when 50 back was last, I opted for a split request as my very first event. I had a great time and by the time my individual event straggled in, I was completely spent and so glad I didn't have to swim it. 3 day meets are pretty hard for me, mentally and physically.

    2. You're probably also correct that the edge was off. Once I got the one thing I wanted, well the rest was just the rest. And 50 free has hardly been a great event for me the past 2 years. I have won a national championship before -- in Indy 2009. Though with a meet as small as this one, I tend to think of the person who nabs the #1 ranking as the real national champion.

    3. I did enter the water way too shallow, couldn't do my planned number of dolphin kicks, and had a poor breakout. Unfortunately, this has happened to me before as a result of lack of blocks to practice starts. Still very frustrating when you start the race thinking sh*t just lost half a second. I had trouble seeing the wall because my goggles had fogged and because we finished on a bulkhead. It's always harder for me to see the finish on a bulkhead. The number of hash marks were different at both ends and I hadn't practiced a free finish in the comp pool.
  5. jroddin's Avatar
    It's hard to be ready emotionally and physically for the last event no matter who you are and no matter what the event happens to be (except for maybe the energizer bunny otherwise known as Chris Stevenson). If the 50 is the last event of the meet, the sprinters will complain it is too hard to swim at the end. Does that mean we should put the 200 fly at the end of the meet?

    Great job on your WR! Congrats! I also thought you did a wonderful job with your interview. You did an excellent job promoting the social aspects of USMS (friendships formed through USMS and the Forums and Blogs) plus you were quite humble with your responses to Misty.

    Jeff
  6. The Fortress's Avatar
    Thx Jeff!

    The 200 fly wasn't last, but it was on the last day along with 200 breast. I definitely felt for people swimming those events! There were a lot of scratches on day 3, likely a lot of emotionally and physically tired swimmers.
  7. Jazz Hands's Avatar
    Someday you're going to totally crush a 50 free.
  8. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz Hands
    Someday you're going to totally crush a 50 free.
    I haven't crushed one since Indy in 2009. What do you suggest?

    I think doing a 50 as a stand alone event at a meet would help.
  9. That Guy's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress
    I haven't crushed one since Indy in 2009. What do you suggest?
  10. jim thornton's Avatar
    Leslie, if the weather is nice, we should definitely go out to North Park. Otherwise, we could swim at the Y. They have been keeping the temperature reasonably cool. But North Park would be extremely fun. It's 110 yards by 50 meters. You may not need this large a pool to do your sprint endurance sets, but they also have a water slide.
  11. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton
    Leslie, if the weather is nice, we should definitely go out to North Park. Otherwise, we could swim at the Y. They have been keeping the temperature reasonably cool. But North Park would be extremely fun. It's 110 yards by 50 meters. You may not need this large a pool to do your sprint endurance sets, but they also have a water slide.
    Sounds perfect! I'll hope for good weather. Just pick a time -- not too early please -- for Sunday.
  12. EricOrca's Avatar
    Congrats on the WR! I have to admit, I read a lot of your post's, including the post race analysis and your training commentary's and find many tip's and training strategies that I can and do use. Very inspirational work.
  13. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by EricOrca
    Congrats on the WR! I have to admit, I read a lot of your post's, including the post race analysis and your training commentary's and find many tip's and training strategies that I can and do use. Very inspirational work.
    Thank you so much, Eric! It's always so nice to hear that.