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Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton

Jim: The Classics Illustrated Version

Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.
Okay, after this, I will take a break from swimming self-aggrandizement and move onto other areas of self-aggrandizement so vlog followers won't get sick of me.

But I can't help myself.

I must post footage of what proved to be the greatest meet experience of my life.

Many many thanks to the munificent Chicken of the Sea, Amanda "HTFU" Hunt, who filmed all these races.

Swim #1. 1000 yard freestyle (Friday night)


Fortunately, this does not include the 1000.

Even I would be hard pressed to watch me plodding back and forth for 11:22.39 Z

Swim #2. 100 yard freestyle (Saturday morning)

I was sort of out of it for this swim. I got up on the blocks late after some confusion about what heat I was in and was still semi-putting my goggles on when the starter, perhaps noting my discombobulation, had one of the only quick interludes of the whole meet between the "take your marks" and the "go."

So, I did not have time to remind myself to keep my eyes open. You will see on the third length that I hit the lap lane. What you can't see is that the turns on the far end of the pool were all wobbly because of this slippy metal rim that the GMU pool has around its perimeter.

When I finished the race, I looked up at the clock and thought I had done a 53.35, slower than two weeks earlier in our Amish mudhole. I was horribly disappointed and instantly groggy and bedraggled.

A half hour later, when they posted the results, I saw that I had been looking at the wrong time on the board. I had actually swum a 52.43Z, which turns out to be my fastest ever electronically timed 100 as a masters swimmer. (I went a 52.09 hand-timed at CMU when I was 50.)

This time beat my old zone's record of 52.90, but it was crushed by the great sprinter, Paul Trevisan in the next heat. Still, I had a new Zones record for about 1 minute!

Anyhow, great joy for me here-- and a tincture of what might have been had I had time to remind myself to keep my eyes opened:

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddlebagz69#p/a/u/2/7gcg2M8Y2m4


Swim #3. 500 Freestyle (Saturday afternoon)

I swam this race, like the 1000, not in my B70 but rather a FS1 I had purchased in the pre-B70 era but never worn before. My goal was to man up for this race and not coddle myself too much, vis a vis pain avoidance. But I also didn't want to suffer arm lockjaw half way through and require mechanical hoist water evacuation. Thus I attempted, as best I could, to adopt a metronomic death march kind of approach, with a bit of a sprint at the end if there was anything left.

Note: I am putting these videos in order of how I swam the races, but you might want to save watching this one for last and take the precaution of cushioning the floor around you with throw pillows in case it causes you to nod off.

My time--5:23.18Z--beat my old Zones record in this event.

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba.../3/gfi1biu0uUs


Swim #4. 200 Freestyle (Sunday morning)

This was the high point of my swimming life--a new zones record (beating my time of 1:56.07 from last year.

Event 32 Men 55-59 200 Yard Freestyle
================================================== ================
ZONE: Z 1:56.07 4/26/2009 James Thornton, TPIT
NATL: ! 1:50.85 5/14/2006 JIM MCCONICA
Name Age Team Seed Finals
================================================== ================
1 Thornton, James 57 TEAM PITTSBURGH 1:58.90 1:54.89Z
26.55 55.39 (28.84)
1:25.44 (30.05) 1:54.89 (29.45)

'Nuff said.

[nomedia="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nj0dgN1-H90"]YouTube- Jim's 200 free[/nomedia]

Immediate aftermath:

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba.../7/HIkAZSslQBw

Aftermath continued:

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba.../6/wze2QdxAfoU

Swim #5. 50 Freestyle (Sunday afternoon)

Being as I had absolutely no chance to make the Top 10 in the 50--and doubt I could have made the Top 100 in this pure sprinter's event--I decided to end the meet on a note that might preminisce my FINA-legal future.

And so it was for the first time since I was 47, and the Speedo Aquablade body suit had not yet been invented, that I actually raced something in a jammer.

The suit was the new Speedo racing jammer, which had a peculiar feel. People who have raced in so-called paper suits told me its got a similar tactile sensation to this. I have a size 34 gut (if I am being generous to myself), so I wore a size 30 jammer.

It got on easily, perhaps too easily.

My initial concern with this suit was that it compresses and miniaturizes the one part of my body that needs not further miniaturization. Moreover, by compacting the flesh here, it only served--like a pasta extruder--to push more fat out where I suspected it might be flubbering and blubbering like a sail that has lost one of its lines in a gale.

In other words, I did not think I would be swimming with the sleekness of an orca but more with the inelegance of a sumo.

My best times this year previous to today were a 24.81 and a 24.50, both swum in Amish mudholes with my B70 kneeskin.

I figured that if I could break 26.0 in the jammers, I would be doing okay.

To give myself some additional boost, I first took some Jolt, the use of which is illustrated in the following, where I instructed Leslie in the proper application of the gum:

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba.../1/bofYC-y2qn0

Next, I did the pre-50 weigh in on the George Mason University cattle scale. Why they have this thing in the natatorium baffles me, but I used it anyhow.

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba...13/oXxlukFno6A

Finally, I moved to the blocks for the first of what would prove two starts in the 50:

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba...14/JWJv2NVxuR0

Then the second start and actual race:

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba...15/v3t25IghfqU

Followed by the aftermath:

http://www.youtube.com/user/saddleba...16/u3BkgqwjeBw

My time of 24.78 is the best jammer time I have done as a master. I don't know what the discrepancy between this and a B70 time would be. Last year, my 50 in the b70 was a 24.17, so if we compare these, it's a .61 second difference.

However, I also swam the 100 and 200 slower last year, so it is possible I might have beaten my 24.17 this year had I done it in a B70. I doubt I would have beaten the time by anymore than roughly have the time I beat my 100 by (52.90-52.43=.47/2=.23). So saying I might have done a 24.17-.23 = 23.94 in the B70, that would suggest that switching to jammers cost me .84 seconds per 50.

Not great, but I suspect learning to keep my eyes open could make up some of this, shaving off chest hair a little more, and losing the gut maybe a wee bit more.

But such is fodder for future vlogs. This is the time to reap, not to sow!

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Updated April 28th, 2010 at 05:02 PM by jim thornton

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Comments

  1. ande's Avatar
    way to go old man
  2. spell_me's Avatar
    Yoweee!! That was some two hundred!!!! Congratulations!!!!!!!!!! Way to go!!
  3. jim thornton's Avatar
    Thanks to both of younz guys, as we say here in Sewickley.

    The only thing I can say is, B70, We hardly knew ye!
  4. Bobinator's Avatar
    Wow Jimby you had a fantastic meet!!
    Are you sore today? I would be.
    You should go to Nationals......it looks like you're on a good roll!
  5. The Fortress's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton
    Thanks to both of younz guys, as we say here in Sewickley.

    The only thing I can say is, B70, We hardly knew ye!
    Well, you had a one year love affair. Isn't that pretty long by affair standards?

    Truly outstanding meet! But a better "meet experience" than Indy?!
  6. jim thornton's Avatar
    Both were outstanding meet experiences. But this was my favorite meet.

    Bob, no more meets for me this SCY season.

    Time to follow Secretariat to the conjugal pasturelands for a few months.

    Surely there will be no shortage of fillies hoping to become in the way of Jim colts?
  7. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton
    Thanks to both of younz guys, as we say here in Sewickley.

    The only thing I can say is, B70, We hardly knew ye!
    Judging from the location of the hole in your B70 in Indy, I'd say you knew it very well indeed.
  8. jim thornton's Avatar
    Touché, Amanda! Touché!

    Or is it Douché?
  9. EricOrca's Avatar
    very inspirational, and a belated thanks(?) for the Orca feeding nightmare picture, or should I say that was the Orca before he spat you out.
  10. jim thornton's Avatar
    Thanks, EricOrca. For readers who do not remember the reference, I will reprint the picture Eric is referring to. It had not occurred to me that the orca might be suffering more than his unpalatable foodstuff!

  11. Bobinator's Avatar
    Patch the hole up!!!!!!
    Remember Jimby you can wear your beloved BS suit in open water! You should start training for the Noblesville 10K National Championship!
  12. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Bobinator
    Patch the hole up!!!!!!
    Remember Jimby you can wear your beloved BS suit in open water! You should start training for the Noblesville 10K National Championship!
    How close is Noblesville to the Bobinator Midwestern Compound?

    And is Noblesville anything like Happy Town?
  13. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Bobinator
    Patch the hole up!!!!!!
    Remember Jimby you can wear your beloved BS suit in open water! You should start training for the Noblesville 10K National Championship!
    I know you can still wear the long leg suits in OW, but can you really wear those neoprene BS's without being relegated to the wetsuit division (where they belong)??? I thought the new textile rules were to apply although not the leg length or torso coverage.

    I'm hoping to do the 10k. What's that lake like?
  14. Bobinator's Avatar
    Noblesville is very close to the Carmel Compound! I swim 4 X per week in Noblesville and Morse is my home lake!
    The reservouir is a double loop of an easy 5K course.
    Most of the swim is in a calm cove. It can be a little murky. It could be warm in July. It just depends on the current weather/rainfall. The NASTI'S put on a great event. You know we are "a drinking team with a swimming problem"!
  15. jim thornton's Avatar
    I am a little suspicious of hot midwestern murky lakes after writing about the Iron Horse triathlon in Springfield, Illinois--an outbreak of leptospirosis ("swamp fever") sickened dozens of top triathletes. One guy ran a fever of 108 degrees F--but survived, without brain damage...
  16. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton
    I am a little suspicious of hot midwestern murky lakes after writing about the Iron Horse triathlon in Springfield, Illinois--an outbreak of leptospirosis ("swamp fever") sickened dozens of top triathletes. One guy ran a fever of 108 degrees F--but survived, without brain damage...
    Do you know who it was that survived the 108 temperature? I may know this individual. Do you still have a copy of the article?

    Maybe the high blood pressure that you think may have helped you swim so beautifully last weekend will repel our nasty midwestern swamp lurkers. I hope so! If I'm in the country I'll definitely risk the Indy 10k.

    In any case, Chez Chicken, (the Chicken Coop?) is available to anyone desiring a dip in the lake, for Big Shoulders or just for fun!

    And did you just call me a douche bag, or a touche bag, Jim?
  17. jim thornton's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Chicken of the Sea
    Do you know who it was that survived the 108 temperature? I may know this individual. Do you still have a copy of the article?

    Maybe the high blood pressure that you think may have helped you swim so beautifully last weekend will repel our nasty midwestern swamp lurkers. I hope so! If I'm in the country I'll definitely risk the Indy 10k.

    In any case, Chez Chicken, (the Chicken Coop?) is available to anyone desiring a dip in the lake, for Big Shoulders or just for fun!

    And did you just call me a douche bag, or a touche bag, Jim?
    1) I will try to find and email you the Iron Horse story. The guy with the 108 temp was a black guy from Chicago--he is supposedly well known because he was trying to bring more minority participation to the sport of Triathlons. Anyhow, very nice fellow when I interviewed him--hope he's made a full recovery. The doctors told him that what saved him was being such good shape--that triathletes on a hot day run body temperatures high enough to really sicken normal folks, but that their bodies habituate to it. I know our teammate Jeremy can stay in the steambath much much longer than I can, though if my Death Valley adventure gets assigned, I will have to start doing some training in the sauna...

    2) No, you are in no way a Douche. I just was struck by how Touche and Douche are merely one letter apart. And since you were calling attention to my suit malfunction, it seemed as if the door to body cavity related word play had been opened by you.

    3) I would like to tentatively request a place in the roost. Will bring my own straw if necessary.
  18. Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
    I did the Death Valley Marathon a couple of years ago. Amazing place! I don't suppose you'll be staying at the inn if you go there... I imagine it's very much like the interior of Australia in the summer. NOT NICE!
    Spent a night in Vegas on the way home. That's the only time I've ever been there. Pretty uneventful really, even taking into account the Chinese guy that leapt out of the trunk of the car.
  19. jim thornton's Avatar
    Leslie Chow?