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Nats, Day 2 & 3, July 7-8

Rating: 6 votes, 3.67 average.
Saturday:

50 back, 32.4, WR

Only one race on Sat, but it was my baby. Thrilled to break my own record and was somewhat surprised. I had a .60 reaction time but uncharacteristically botched the start a bit -- entered the water with my hands crossed instead of in a streamline. That's like a automatic break in the water and I was mentally letting out F bombs. Getting quickly into my SDK helped ameliorate this eror, but I know I lost a couple tenths here. The rest of the race felt good, good tempo and I even swam straight. My tempo slowed down a bit the last 10 meters, showing my lack of sprint conditioning. The only odd part of the race was that I felt like I had water flowing over my face the entire time making it difficult to see and breathe. Some of it was splash from my rapid fire turnover. But some felt unusual. Other backstrokers complained about this phenomenon. Don't know if it had anything to do with the current in the pool or what. If I didn't look that happy on the jumbotron (Water Rat commented on this), it was only because I was gasping for some air and sick of water in my face. 32.4 is my second fastest time ever. I had secretly hoped to be a bit faster, but there is always next time. That's the fate of sprinters -- any small deviation from perfection in the details costs you time. Still, the end result rocked!

There is a vid of this on my FB page. I need to figure out how to youtube it.


Sunday:

50 breast, 39.0, 2nd

Woohoo! I dropped 1.6 seconds from last year. What a shocker for me with only one little dolphin kick to get me through the race and no walls. I was really pleased when a couple breaststrokers commented that I looked like a legit evilstroker and was getting major forward progress from my undulation. A friend commented that I looked "like a dophin in the water." I guess my evil has improved this year from doing it in practice so frequently. The only technical difficulties were that I was under a tad too long on the start. After my pullout, I was not at the surface, so had to float up and hence was not ahead on the start. My stroke count was also off at the finish and I had to short stroke it to avoid a major glide into the wall. The remaining area that needs improvement is my whip kick. But I likely will just continue to fake and not work on that much.


50 fly, 30.4, under previous NR of 30.7

I knew going into this race that Lisa Dahl would be tough to beat. I'm not sure I've ever beat her in 50 fly LCM and she was on fire this meet. Kudos to her. My strategy was to go the entire first 15 meters underwater and try to hang on. I've never done that before on the 50, but thought it would save my arms. Very helpful that there was a marking at the bottom of the pool so I knew exactly when to breakout. As I knew would happen, I tightened up the last 5 meters. But the real problem was that I didn't hit the wall right. I was forced to glide in while Lisa slammed the wall. I think I lost on the last stroke; it was a Cavic-Phelps type situation. I thought I would be rather heartbroken about this. But, no, I was phlegmatic. You win some and you lose some in the world of sprinting. I believe 30.4 is my second best time and best textile time. (29.6 with the Jaked being my fastest ever from 2009). And 30.4 is vastly better than the 31.5 I swam last year at Auburn. I just needed more juice. Still, no one can be bummed about swimming under a Laura Val NR. And I believe only 1 person swam faster in the 40-49 age groups.


++++++++++++++++++++++++++++


Thoughts on Omaha:

-- The pool and facility were fantastic. The arena setting meant ample seating. The warm down pool was fantastic with blocks in a couple sprint lanes to practice starts. And the jumbotron and cameras were pretty cool. There did seem to be a slight current in the pool. And you could often see ripples in the water, especially in the end lanes.

-- Much fun to be had hanging with friends, watching the racing and meeting some of my HIT peeps.

-- I am a short course swimmer. My best stroke is dolphin kick and long course deprives me of this weapon. My actual long course times are just flat out slower than my converted short course times.

-- I am really growing to hate the 15 meter rule. My dolphin kick has improved so much that I could maintain speed much further. Not that I'd like to go 50 meters UW, but I think 25 would be just dandy. I was bummed to have to come up in both fly and back this meet.

-- Because I am a kicker and turner, I MUST train long course to be at my best in long course. Long course feels like a different sport to me and there is a vastly bigger aerobic component. Not that I would need to do IG in practice, but the workouts I did after Greensboro did not prepare me adequately. And I was really negligent in not doing any lactate tolerance sets. I'm not sure about next long course season. There may always be a conflict between Lil Fort's track practices and NVSL meets and me training at Mason in the summer ... I'm not sure solo training at Rockville more often really would be enough either.

-- Greensboro and Omaha were just too close in time. I was uninspired for a few weeks after Greensboro and lost key training time. And I was never as sharp in May and June as I was from Jan to April in practice.

-- I did achieve my goal of swimming faster this year than last year at Auburn.

50 free: 29.6 --> 29.2
50 back: 32.5 --> 32.4
50 breast: 40.6 --> 39.0
50 fly: 31.5 --> 30.4

And I had been concerned that I wouldn't be able to do that after my last week of taper power outage hell. Looking at the times, I was definitely best on Sunday. Somewhat unusual for me. I felt out of sorts on Friday and better as the weekend progressed. I was even ready to do a 100 back when the meet ended. And I am contemplating going out to UMBC next weekend to pop one in on Sunday.

-- With the improvement in my breaststroke in the last year, I really feel like I am a four stroke swimmer now. Thank you fins and all those fast hand drills!

-- Overall, I give myself a B+. I would have given myself an A- if I hadn't scratched my 100 back split in the 200. But I was too tired to do it after 50 free and not mentally prepared. I should know never ever ever to sign up for back to back events at Nationals.

-- I got home at 3:00 am last night. Re-entry is apparently my 6th event.

-- Bring on short course! But not until I've goofed around for a while.

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Updated July 9th, 2012 at 04:08 PM by The Fortress

Categories
Masters Swim Meets / Events

Comments

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  1. qbrain's Avatar
    Congrats Fort! Have fun goofing off.
  2. jim thornton's Avatar
    Leslie, what kind of pool is UMBC? Congratulations on another great meet.
  3. rxleakem's Avatar
    Great swims! I was able to catch your 50 fly on the livestream - very fast!
  4. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by qbrain
    Congrats Fort! Have fun goofing off.
    Thx Q. I am really ready to be free of the tyranny of tapering. But I may have to delay goofing off until after Sunday.
  5. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton
    Leslie, what kind of pool is UMBC? Congratulations on another great meet.
    Thx son.

    I have never swum there, so don't really know. I have a message into Barb asking her about it. It says it's in the natatorium, which suggests indoors, but the long course pool is outside. A Reston masters swimmer said that it was vastly better than Hains Point.


    Here is the order of events (no 50s):
    http://www.swimphone.com/mobile/meet....cfm?smid=4102

    Pool: http://www.umbcretrievers.com/info/facilities/
  6. That Guy's Avatar
    Great job Fort! I was one of the many people yelling "GO LESLIE" before your 50 back WR.
  7. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by rxleakem
    Great swims! I was able to catch your 50 fly on the livestream - very fast!
    Thanks Mike. I felt like I had a great start and it was fast until the last 5 meters. I heard the livestream was very good quality.
  8. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by That Guy
    Great job Fort! I was one of the many people yelling "GO LESLIE" before your 50 back WR.
    Thx! And great job you! Did you get PRs in every event? It seemed like you were on fire.
  9. pwb's Avatar
    Fort, your swims were awesome. I'm sorry we never really connected during the meet. I was on deck and watched your 50 fly yesterday and was waiting for you after the race when my phone rang from one of my kids. As they were home alone (wife was in Montana running), I had to grab it. As far as the finish on that race, you are correct that Lisa beat you on it in a very Phelps/Cavic style, but I'm not sure you could've done anything differently. Had you tried to take another quick stroke, I suspect you would've been slower. It was a fun race to watch poolside.

    I agree with so many of your points -- especially the different beast nature of LCM vs SCM/Y. Jonty Skinner's published some good articles on this over the years like this one -- http://www.parametrix.org/pubs/skinner_lcmscy.pdf. I learned big time this weekend that a lack of LCM training made me under-prepared to race LCM over 4 days.

    See you in Indy?
  10. That Guy's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress
    Thx! And great job you! Did you get PRs in every event? It seemed like you were on fire.
    Thanks! The water in the pool kept extinguishing me though.... I got 5 best times so I am happy with my results.
  11. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by pwb;
    Fort, your swims were awesome. I'm sorry we never really connected during the meet. I was on deck and watched your 50 fly yesterday and was waiting for you after the race when my phone rang from one of my kids. As they were home alone (wife was in Montana running), I had to grab it. As far as the finish on that race, you are correct that Lisa beat you on it in a very Phelps/Cavic style, but I'm not sure you could've done anything differently. Had you tried to take another quick stroke, I suspect you would've been slower. It was a fun race to watch poolside.

    I agree with so many of your points -- especially the different beast nature of LCM vs SCM/Y. Jonty Skinner's published some good articles on this over the years like this one -- http://www.parametrix.org/pubs/skinner_lcmscy.pdf. I learned big time this weekend that a lack of LCM training made me under-prepared to race LCM over 4 days.

    See you in Indy?
    Yeah, I don't think I could have done anything different either. It's difficult to make adjustments on fly and if you don't hit the wall right, there's not much you can do. Luck of the draw sometimes. It still felt very fast on the whole and I was pleased with my start and first 15 m especially. It was a fun race.

    I am simply NOT in the camp of folk who say you can train SCY for LCM. I can't imagine doing a SCY practice where I didn't push off walls, etc. And, apart from being utterly annoying, that type of training would only create bad habits for short course. Long course is just way way more swimming with no built in turn breaks/walls. I was in good long course shape back in 2008-09 when I trained more with my team. I notice a decided difference between swimming long course then and now. I used to enjoy the long course sprints. Not so much now, though I've improved my dolphin kick so much that short course will now always be my preference.

    Thx for the article!

    Oh, I plan to be in Indy! No Mission Viejo for me though.
    Updated July 9th, 2012 at 04:00 PM by The Fortress
  12. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by That Guy
    Thanks! The water in the pool kept extinguishing me though.... I got 5 best times so I am happy with my results.
    Sweeeet!

    Did you think the water in the warm up pool was slightly chillier than the comp pool?
  13. Jazz Hands's Avatar
    Sweet swims, Fort. What will be your training focus/foci next season?
  14. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Jazz Hands
    Sweet swims, Fort. What will be your training focus/foci next season?
    Thanks Jazz. I'm not entirely sure yet. There's likely nothing more I can really do in my best events (50 fly & back in SCY and SCM). Though I may race the 50 fly SCM in December again and try to stay under more than I did at the Albatross meet. I may shift focus to the 100 back and/or 100 IM for the Sprint Classic. I'd like to knock off 1-2 100s before Indy Nats; swimming 3 100s at Nationals is too much for me. I will never feel compelled to swim a full schedule of events at Nationals; less is more in that setting. If my shoulder improves, and it feels fine right now, I'd like to get back to doing some more sprint free. The 50 free felt just terrible at Omaha. And I'm sure I've been under performing in that event.
  15. pwb's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress
    I am simply NOT in the camp of folk who say you can train SCY for LCM.
    I am with you. I think you can do this approach, but it is far from optimal. The biggest difference I noticed was the fatigue factor as the # of races went on in the meet. I tried to blunt the LCM factor as much as possible by only warming up and cooling down in the SCM pool, but, already by the 100 fly on Friday, I was feeling toasted. Based upon my recent test set and workouts leading up to Omaha, I was arguably in better race shape than even before Greensboro ... but 95% of my training was SCM and, at the meet, no amount of massage, R&R could help me recover/adapt quickly enough to the strain of LCM racing.

    All that said, I wouldn't have missed swimming in Omaha for anything and still LOVED the experience. I just know that, for example, before I commit to going to Montreal in 2014, I'm going to make sure I can do 3-4 LCM workouts a week for at least 2 months leading up to the event.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress
    Oh, I plan to be in Indy! No Mission Viejo for me though.
    That's my plan, as well. We'll see if life complies with my wishes.
  16. That Guy's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress
    Sweeeet!

    Did you think the water in the warm up pool was slightly chillier than the comp pool?
    Officially, the warmup pool was supposed to be 81 degrees and the competition pool was supposed to be 80 degrees. On Wednesday I noticed a tiny thermometer hanging from one of the ladders in the competition pool, and it appeared to be registering 79 or 80. (I didn't have my glasses on, of course.) The warmup pool didn't feel any different to me. They both felt cold.
  17. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by pwb
    All that said, I wouldn't have missed swimming in Omaha for anything and still LOVED the experience. I just know that, for example, before I commit to going to Montreal in 2014, I'm going to make sure I can do 3-4 LCM workouts a week for at least 2 months leading up to the event.
    Definitely fun to soak in the atmosphere and experience!

    Based on how I felt here and at Auburn last year with almost no LCM training, Montreal is way down on my hit parade at the moment. It sounds good in theory (not too far, right time zone), but I wouldn't want to compete there in decidedly sub par LCM shape. I'd rather use my travel "chips" on other things.

    I did hear some other distance swimmers complaining about the difficulty of recovering from the 1500 free. So others may have been suffering as you were.
    Updated July 9th, 2012 at 05:47 PM by The Fortress
  18. Sojerz's Avatar
    Finally had a chance to catch-up and see how you did. Some rally great swims Leslie.
    -- With the improvement in my breaststroke in the last year, I really feel like I am a four stroke swimmer now. Thank you fins and all those fast hand drills!
    With that Br, maybe some 100IMs or 200IMs coming up
  19. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Sojerz
    Finally had a chance to catch-up and see how you did. Some rally great swims Leslie.

    With that Br, maybe some 100IMs or 200IMs coming up
    Thanks Bill.

    I usually do 100 IM in SCY and SCM. I've done one 200 IM as a master and that was my last one. I don't have the aerobic base for it and it's way too painful! I leave that event in my youth.
  20. That Guy's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The Fortress

    I usually do 100 IM in SCY and SCM.
    This. This right here is why I read this blog. Awww yeah.
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