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Thread: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

  1. #1
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    Angry Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Does anyone else think the go the distance program is seriously stupid. The prizes stink, it's too hard to get them if you even get the prize you deserved. I don't even think most people are even telling the truth about how much they swim to cheat.

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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Then wear a noseclip

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    Very Active Member flystorms's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    I'm sorry you feel that way, but not at all. I use it to keep myself focused and on track with races in my future. It's not about the "prizes", but the goals you set out to achieve. Everyone who does it has different goals. Some are just getting back in the pool and need a spot on the horizon. Sprinters aren't going to do as much as distance/OW swimmers. And if you think about it, this is program doesn't cost you a bit to enter or not, yet you still get them if you reach certain milestones.

    If you are lying about the miles/time you're logging, it's only hurting yourself. If you don't want to participate, don't. It's that simple.
    "If your ship doesn't come in, swim out to meet it." - Jonathan Winters, actor and comedian

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    Very Active Member flystorms's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Quote Originally Posted by __steve__ View Post
    Then wear a noseclip
    "If your ship doesn't come in, swim out to meet it." - Jonathan Winters, actor and comedian

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    Very Active Member Allen Stark's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    I gave up on it when I found I was focusing more on distance than quality.I don't even keep track of my yards during a workout.I found that liberating,but that is just me. It is very valuable as a motivating tool for many and,since most people do like to keep track of their yardage it is a great,free tool.The prizes are just an added bonus.
    "To strive,to seek,to find,and not to yield" Tennyson
    Allen

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    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    To the OP: Yeah, all these free prizes for this free, totally voluntary event are terrible.

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    Very Active Member mcnair's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    I'm goal-driven (not gift-driven), so it works great for me. I also feel a great sense of accomplishment when I look back over a month or a year and see all those workouts, day in and day out, even the 2000-yard/35-40-minute ones, really do add up to something impressive.

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    Very Active Member gdanner's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    It's a great way for me to keep track of how much I've done and how much I might need to do again, if I expect to go certain times. And it's slightly entertaining to see how much I've done compared to others. For those reasons, I've been flogging for several years now. I wish I had started sooner!
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    Participating Member isilver78's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Quote Originally Posted by Allen Stark View Post
    I gave up on it when I found I was focusing more on distance than quality.I don't even keep track of my yards during a workout.
    I agree with this statement BUT did managed to put GTD to great use. Thanks to the flogs I can now see how much faster I am swimming with smarter workouts as compared to years before GTD was great for forcing me to track workouts and unintentionally build a tool to train better.

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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    It's a good way to compare net distance each year. Also to look back at the month to see how many days of rest were taken, how I feel and so forth. Being a distance challenged swimmer I barely make over 250 miles, and the goal gifts make me chuckle - but I like it. Heck, it only takes 30 seconds each day to log the info, so why not?
    Last edited by __steve__; July 1st, 2014 at 09:38 PM.

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    Very Active Member rxleakem's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Although I sometimes have to give a specific description of what flogging I participate in , it is the closest that I will likely ever come to getting the perks that a sponsored swimmer gets. This year (by reviewing my flog), I can see how far behind I am as opposed to the past four years. And I'm ok with that.
    ..<))><

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    Swimming gives me a buzz! Bobinator's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Hi onlybrit- I think people with opinions like yours should become a member of the USMS National Fitness Committee and come up with useful, motivating ways to benefit our usms swimmers. I happen to be a member of the committee and would be happy to present any of your ideas during our next conference this September in Jacksonville, Florida.
    The idea is to offer a variety of activities and programs with the hopes that most of our members will find something that benefits their swimming lifestyle. GTD may not be perfect, but you can tell by the log pages that a large number of swimmers use it daily on some level and possibly enjoy the benefits it provides them. I'm sorry GTD isn't working for you.

    Sincerely,

    Robin Walker



    Quote Originally Posted by onlybrit View Post
    Does anyone else think the go the distance program is seriously stupid. The prizes stink, it's too hard to get them if you even get the prize you deserved. I don't even think most people are even telling the truth about how much they swim to cheat.
    HTFU!

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    Very Active Member ElaineK's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobinator View Post
    Hi onlybrit- I think people with opinions like yours should become a member of the USMS National Fitness Committee and come up with useful, motivating ways to benefit our usms swimmers. I happen to be a member of the committee and would be happy to present any of your ideas during our next conference this September in Jacksonville, Florida.
    The idea is to offer a variety of activities and programs with the hopes that most of our members will find something that benefits their swimming lifestyle. GTD may not be perfect, but you can tell by the log pages that a large number of swimmers use it daily on some level and possibly enjoy the benefits it provides them. I'm sorry GTD isn't working for you.

    Sincerely,

    Robin Walker

    Well said, Robin!


    Onlybrit, if you think it's "seriously stupid," than either don't use it or do something about it. Why don't you take Robin up on her offer and see what you can do to improve the program? Personally, I think it's excellent. The FLOG is a great tool for keeping track of my workouts in the same way the other posters mentioned.


    As for the prizes, it doesn't cost anything to enter GTD, so being critical of the prizes makes you sound like a spoiled brat. I have received EVERY prize I have earned over the past four years, so the sponsors have followed up on their promises. Perhaps yours got lost in the mail.
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Quote Originally Posted by onlybrit View Post
    Does anyone else think the go the distance program is seriously stupid.
    I'm sure someone else does somewhere. Its fun for me but I'm sure it isn't for everyone. Most people that don't like it voluntarily don't participate.
    Quote Originally Posted by onlybrit View Post
    The prizes stink, it's too hard to get them if you even get the prize you deserved.
    As others have pointed out, it is hard to complain about free stuff when there is no cost to participate. A couple years ago, they did gift certificates that required that you purchase a certain amount in order to redeem them. That was kind of lame but I wasn't willing to complain about it. They probably helped out some people that were planning on buying some equipment. I just quietly chose not to redeem them. I think the swim bags (250 miles) are pretty nice. They don't exactly overnight your prizes the second you hit the required yardage but I've never failed to receive any prize promised to me.
    Quote Originally Posted by onlybrit View Post
    I don't even think most people are even telling the truth about how much they swim to cheat.
    I finished first in my age group one year. The Nike prize van didn't show up at my doorstep showering me with gifts and praise at my accomplishment. I didn't get a medal. There was no All-American patch or a top ten mention. I didn't even get an email. Somewhere in a forgotten 2012 archive is my name on the top of a list. That's hardly an incentive to cheat. The only drawback I've seen so far is that accepting gifts from Nike could impact my 4 years of NCAA eligibility .

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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    While onlybrit's comments were perhaps a bit harsh, they did resonate with me. I write this as someone who hasn't been in the water since perhaps March, so keep that in mind.

    I have participated in GTD for several years, and am nominally participating this year, though I am stalled for now. I'm a guy who's generally a pool swimmer, and who never wears a cap. How many 50-mile caps do I really need? I think it would be nice if the shorter distance goals changed from time-to-time. Maybe a bag tag like the "swimming saves lives" tags or a pair of goggles (Swedes are cheap, for example).

    Looking at this year's awards schedule, there appears to be nothing between the 50-mile and 500-mile marks, at which point you get a new suit, which I'm guessing will be of more value to women than men. Despite the prodigious efforts of a number of swimmers, most people aren't going to make that 500-mile goal. For me, it would just mean more shoulder problems. I'd much rather pay for my shiny new swimsuit than for an MRI. Looked at another way, of the 7032 people who have logged at least 50 miles so far this year, if current trends hold, perhaps 750 people will be awarded a swimsuit. I'm sure that's a substantial commitment by the sponsors, but it's likely not an achievable goal by the bulk of the USMS membership.

    Just my 2...

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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Quote Originally Posted by smontanaro View Post
    Maybe a bag tag like the "swimming saves lives" tags or a pair of goggles (Swedes are cheap, for example).
    (light bulb!) What about and option to cash our prize and have it go to the swimming saves lives foundation instead? Would that be too complicated, or possible?

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    Very Active Member Chris Stevenson's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    The OP was obvious a troll and not worthy of direct response.

    But more generally this thread and various others I have seen over the years makes me question why there are prizes in GTD at all. The focus should be on setting goals and tracking one's progress toward that goal. The GTD tool is useful in that it can tell you how far above/below pace you are, and you can compare to previous years. The swag is a distraction. I also don't really understand why the totals are publicly ranked, though I do like the ability to aggregate by (say) team since that can be motivating.

    And if one doesn't think that total mileage is worthy of tracking - an opinion I am sympathetic toward - then clearly it isn't a tool for you.
    These opinions are mine mine mine and not USMS'.

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    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stevenson View Post
    I also don't really understand why the totals are publicly ranked
    Because GTD is an event. You can flog without entering GTD, correct? If you aren't interested in being ranked just flog without entering the GTD event. That's my take, anyway.

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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    When I don't have a meet on the horizon, which is most of the time, GTD is sometimes the only thing that pushes me to get up at the butt crack of dawn. The prizes are nice...my equipment bag is most useful.

    I don't think too many people are fudging their numbers just to get free stuff. I know a couple of people have unbelievable totals, and I happen to know of one in particular that actually does swim that ridiculous amount every day.

    I swim with folks that are all about the yardage. They don't care if it's all garbage, just as long as it is a nice big number. I prefer quality, and that's why my goal is 2-300 miles less than theirs.

  20. #20
    USMS Membership Director Jayhawk's Avatar
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    Re: Go The Distance program is stupid and overrated

    Quote Originally Posted by knelson View Post
    Because GTD is an event. You can flog without entering GTD, correct? If you aren't interested in being ranked just flog without entering the GTD event. That's my take, anyway.
    Kirk is correct. Many USMS members have FLOGS and log their daily yardage, but they do not click the link to "enter" the GTD event.

    If you do enter the GTD event and then change your mind, you can withdraw at any time and then your yardage totals will no longer be included in the daily public reports.

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