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USA-S Swim Meets / Events

Meet / OW event planning and results from USA Swimming events.

  1. LCM Racing Starts!

    by , May 30th, 2016 at 03:04 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I think my vacation and work travel plans will prevent me from being around Arizona for most of, if not all of, our AZ Masters meets this summer, so I took the opportunity to swim the 1500 this morning at the Scottsdale Aquatic Club's USAS Cactus Classic. This is the first year I've attended this meet since 2005 without a child swimming and without me having a significant volunteer role in putting the show on, so it was very nice to be able to roll onto the deck with only racing to think about. I cajoled my youngest daughter into coming along as my timer with the promise of seeing her old swimming friends and bacon for lunch!

    I was in the second fastest heat of boys/men and had entered my fastest time from the summer of 2014, 18:18.18, but not my very fastest time of 17:49.08 from 2011. I was in lane 2 and there was a kid next to me in 3 seeded at 17:38. You never know what teenaged boys will do, especially at the start of the season, I just determined to swim my own race and see what happened. While he went out ahead of me through the first 500, I started to catch him in the second 500 and had pulled ahead of him by around the 1200. My core was hurting pretty badly by that point and, after a couple of failed attempts at the start of the 13th and 14th 100s to pick up the pace, I resolved to just hang on until the last 50 and then see what I had. He had caught me by the 1450 and we both pushed hard on the last 50. I managed to prevail by 0.6 seconds and recorded my second best ever Masters 1500 at 18:10.81. I was super pleased with the time as, back in June of 2011, I had started the season at 18:15 and then hit the 17:49 later in the summer. I am hoping that I can race this at least two more times this summer and, if possible, do the last one with some rest, shave and a fast suit.

    Splits were pretty solid by 300s - 3:34.32, 3:39.20, 3:39.65, 3:41.36, 3:36.28 - and by 500s - 6:00.45, 6:06.07, 6:04.29.

    On yeah, yesterday, I had done my 100 SCM fly for Stage 2 of the Swimtathlon and was 1:07.28.

    The rest of June looks pretty light from a racing perspective. I hope to swim the 400 IM at a USAS meet on June 25th, but I don't see my weekends permitting any other racing until then.
  2. SwimJitsu and Swim Sedona

    by , June 22nd, 2015 at 09:03 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    This past weekend was full of swimming and fun, but so much fun that I was completely wasted and sore by the time Sunday evening rolled around. I jumped in my pool this morning before getting on a flight to San Francisco, with the intent of doing a stretch out 1,000, but almost couldn’t move my arms and ended up doing a 100 IM kick without a board. I’ll do some light yoga at my Airbnb pad tonight and see if I have the energy to swim again tomorrow morning.

    Saturday night at the Swimjitsu Races
    I highly, highly encourage anyone who has an instance of SwimJitsu ( coming to a pool near you to do it. My three daughters and I signed up for the evening wave, 6 to 8pm, and the event was held at the fabulous Phoenix Swim Club pool. Think of this as a water-borne combination of the TV shows Wipe Out and American Ninja Warrior, a big obstacle course of inflatables interspersed with a smidgen of swimming. This is run by USASwimming and is part of their (stupidly named, IMHO) #FunnestSport campaign to grow the base of swimmers. They had four earlier waves during the day that were only open to 18 & unders, but we wanted to do this as a family and the night wave allowed for all ages.

    I ended up running the course 4 times over the about 2 hours we were there, but probably could've gotten in a couple more runs if I hadn't stopped to video tape my older two daughters on one of their runs and also done another kickboard obstacle course against my youngest daughter, where she once again proved herself the superior kicker. I did two of my main SwimJitsu runs with her, as well, and she bested me on both of those. Nothing like getting smacked down by a 12 year old, 4'9" girl to make a big man feel small!

    Fortunately, I gained some 'course wisdom' on those runs before facing off against my older two daughters and managed to redeem a small portion of my ego by beating each of them. Here's me and my middle daughter:

    It is A LOT harder than it looks.

    We all had a blast doing this and I was really happy to see many ages represented. I was talking with one of the Phoenix Swim Club Masters coaches as we walked out and we both agreed that this would be a blast to do at the end of a Masters meet. We need to get a future host of Nationals to have an optional extra day of Swimjitsu competition.

    Sore & Sorry Swim Sedona Sunday
    I got up bright and early on Sunday to get up to Sedona for the 8am warmups for our Masters meet there. While the time was early and the sun was bright, my body was sore and slow. While I knew I was using muscles I was not used to using during my SwimJitsu runs the night before, and I was huffing and puffing on each of the runs, I didn't realize how hard I had worked at having fun until I rolled out of bed Sunday morning. Forget an achy breaky heart, I had an achy breaky body. But, what the hell, I thought, as I was really looking forward to swimming at one of the most beautiful pool settings I've ever been to ...

    ... and had the time off to do it.

    I didn't feel much better in warmup and wasn't all that excited about the 1000 that I had entered. I saw that Kurt Dickson was entered, but hadn't seen him around warmups and so I made a deal with myself - if Kurt showed up, I'd try to hang with him; if he didn't, I'd try to swim a 1000 IM. Kurt did show up, I did try to hang with him, but by the 75 or maybe the 100, neither my heart nor body was in it. I just had no energy or motivation to push this. Kurt lapped me around the 700 or so and I got it into my mind that I'd try to hang with him then, but I gave up that ghost after less than 25 of trying. I felt really bad for not at least giving him some semblance of a racing partner, but that's what I had for the day.

    I did enjoy the rest of my swims and the meet, but, with the exception of a halfway acceptable 26.1 in the 50 fly, the times were pretty pathetic (e.g., 2:14.3 in the 200 IM and 1:02.4 in the 100 IM when I've never gone above 2:10 or 1:00 in ANY Masters meet in those events). I can't tell if it was the SwimJitsu, the altitude (Sedona is about 4,500 feet above sea level) or the fact that I've just come off two great weeks of training both in the pool and out of it. But, whatever, it was an AWESOME, fun swimming weekend.

    Updated June 23rd, 2015 at 01:28 AM by pwb

    Swim Workouts , Masters Swim Meets / Events , USA-S Swim Meets / Events
  3. Race Report: 2IM & 1500

    by , July 6th, 2014 at 10:43 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    The real race I came to swim at today's installation of the Arizona Senior (USAS) State Championships was the 1500, but I figured I may as well do the 200 IM as a 'rev-up' race-pace warmup. That IM was, in retrospect, probably a little too close to the 1500 as I was still feeling a bit of it as I got on the blocks for the mile, but that makes the result all the better.

    200 IM
    • Master's best: 2:22.62 (Omaha '12)
    • June 8th, 2014 time: 2:25.79 (Southwest Classic)
    • Today: 2:26.32
    • As I had had a three day drop taper ahead of the Southwest Classic last month, my goal was to just equal my time from that meet. I really think that, had I not come to almost a complete standstill when I totally tied myself up in the lane line at about the 25 mark of the backstroke, I would've been almost spot on that time. Aside from the backstroke flub, this felt well-executed and I'm cool with the result.

    1500 free

    • Master's best: 17:49.02 (AZ Senior States, July 2011)
    • June 12th, 2014 time: 18:32.23
    • Today: 18:18.18
    • While I really loved the symmetry of the time and I am happy with the swim, I was really hoping to get this under the 18:15.36 I had gone back in June of 2011 unrested and untapered. I was also hoping to have had someone to race against, but a couple of kids in my heat took off from the start and went 17:45s and everyone else fell behind me pretty quickly, as well.
    • This was another well executed swim for me, with the 300s very even at:
      • 3:34.7
      • 3:40.3
      • 3:41.7
      • 3:41.5
      • 3:39.8

    • and the 500s as 6:02.0 - 6:08.4 - 6:07.7
    • This still hurt like a beast and I could really benefit from training some long course, but I am definitely starting to re-find my long lost love for this race (it was my favorite back when I was 16 and under).

    Looking ahead from here ...
    • Week of July 7th
      • Get another solid week of training in this week, with hopefully one or two long course workouts in California
      • Race some events next weekend at the Masters Heatstroker at Cactus Pool ( -- we're already up to a whopping 46 online entries.

    • Week of July 14th
      • Transition to speed-oriented workouts and kind of start a taper, with a focus on the 200 and 400 free

    • Week of July 21st
      • Complete a full taper ahead of the AZ State Meet at Tuscon (
      • I will probably only swim on Saturday and have entered the 200 & 400 free, as well as the 50 backstroke. There's a chance I'll be able to come back for the events on Sunday, but it's slim.

    Updated July 7th, 2014 at 01:20 AM by pwb

    USA-S Swim Meets / Events
  4. Race report: 400 IM

    by , July 5th, 2014 at 06:10 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I strolled into the hot, ASU Mona Plummer Aquatic Center around noon today to race my 400 IM at the AZ Senior State Championships meet a little less than an hour later. While the thermometer officially only read about 100 degrees, the deck felt much hotter than that. Thankfully, the great chiller system on the competition pool was cranked to the hilt, making the race water temperature pretty darn perfect.

    I didn't have much expectations for this swim other than to beat the 5:09.99 I had gone almost exactly a month ago in Tucson ( I figured a 'peak swim' would be to beat the 5:03.89 I had gone mid-June of 2011 (, but wasn't going to get too hung up on the result given that my only bit of rest was yesterday's 1,500 meet warmup swim; other than that, I have cranked a pretty hard week of training.

    Result: 5:07.64 with pretty good splits on everything except the backstroke:
    • Fly - 1:08.85
    • Back - 1:20.67 (e.g., I was 1:18.8 in June)
    • Breast - 1:29.72
    • Free - 1:08.40

    My fly and free felt strong, as did the first 75 of my breaststroke. I pulled something in my right leg over the last couple of days and it only flares up in breaststroke, but I could definitely feel the power fading from my kick as the pain intensified over the 100. The only part of the race I'm disappointed in was the backstroke. I was trying to negative split each 100, but was probably too lazy on the first 50; they didn't have pads at both ends so I'll never know what the splits were. The finishing leg at 1:08 gives me some confidence that I can hold 1:12/1:13s on my 1500 tomorrow.

    Putting that swim into perspective, it's my 5th best Master's performance, so not shabby.

    1. 4:58.10 - Omaha Nationals 2012 (tapered & shaved)
    2. 4:58.12 - SPMA Champs 2011 (tapered & shaved)
    3. 5:03.89 - PHX Invite, June 2011 (unrested)
    4. 5:06.99 - Victoria, March 2011 (mostly unrested)
    5. 5:07.64 - Today
    6. 5:07.89 - UC Irvine, June 2012 (unrested)
  5. Exceeding low expectations

    by , June 28th, 2014 at 05:21 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    After feeling like a blob in the water last night, I wasn't expecting much from my attempt at my 400 IM test set this morning. Performance relative to expectations was off the chart; performance relative to past efforts was pretty darn good, as well.

    Warmup sets (1,750 set)

    • 1 x 400: IM, kick-drill by 25
    • 4 x 100: on 1:30, free descend swim w/snorkel (1:21, 1:19, 1:15, 1:11)
    • 4 x 100: on 2:00, IM kick descend, odds w/board, evens on back (1:42, 1:39, 1:37, 1:36+)
    • 6 x 50: on 1:00, #1 and #6 cruise free, #2 to #5 IM order build
      • 0:34+, 0:37, 0:42, 0:32+ vs. June 1st effort of 0:39, 0:40, 0:44, 0:32+

    • Small break to make and shoot another shot of espresso
    • 6 x 25: on 0:35, going 5-6-7-8-5 AFAP strokes off the wall then cruise for the first 5, then all fast on #6; wore Zoomers
    • 1 x 100: easy

    400 IM Test Set (2,050 set / 3,800 total)

    • 8 x 50: on 1:00, 2 each stroke, build the odds and make sure the evens are at your target 400 IM race pace
      • In SCM, my dream is to approach the 4:39.8 I did in 2008 in a tech suit. That race was split 1:03.8, 1:11.5, 1:21.1, 1:03.4 so target 50 times would be 33.5 (2nd 50 of fly), 35+ (back), 40+ (breast) and 31+ (free)
      • My SCY splits to dream of would be 29+ fly, 31+ back, 36+ breast, 29.0 free
      • 09/17/13 - 35+, 35, 42, 33
      • 09/23/13 - 33, 35, 40+, 31+ (much better!)
      • 10/06/13 - 34, 35, 41, 32 (a little sluggish)
      • 10/10/13 - SCY - 29, 30+, 36-, 28- (awesome)
      • 10/17/13 - SCY - 31, 31+, 37, 28+ (sluggish start, OK finish)
      • 10/27/13 - 33, 34+, 41, 31- (much better than expected)
      • 10/30/13 - 33, 34, 40+++/41---, 31-
      • 03/04/14 - SCY - 30, 32, 37, 30 (only fly feels good)
      • 03/15/14 - SCY - 29+, 32, 36, 30 (felt pretty cruiseful)
      • 04/01/14 - 0:33, 0:35, 0:40+, 0:32
      • 04/14/14 - 0:33+, 0:35+, 0:41, 0:31+
      • 06/01/14 - 0:33+, 0:35, 0:42, 0:31
      • 06/27/14 - 0:34, 0:35, 0:42, 0:32

    • 4 x 100: on 1:50, do as 100 IMs, descend to your target race pace divided by 4, ideally starting on #1 no slower than 12 seconds above that
      • SCM target would be to descend from 1:22 to 1:10
      • SCY target would be to descend from 1:14+ to 1:02+
      • 09/17/13 - 1:23, 1:22, 1:19, 1:14
      • 09/23/13 - 1:21, 1:19, 1:15, 1:12+
      • 10/06/13 - 1:21, 1:17+, 1:14, 1:12-
      • 10/10/13 - SCY - 1:11+, 1:10, 1:07, 1:03+
      • 10/17/13 - SCY - 1:12, 1:09, 1:06, 1:04
      • 10/27/13 - 1:21, 1:18, 1:15, 1:11+
      • 10/30/13 - 1:21, 1:18, 1:14, 1:12
      • 03/04/14 - SCY - 1:08, 1:06, 1:07, 1:06+ (I forgot these were supposed to be descend and started hard)
      • 03/15/14 - SCY - 1:09+, 1:09, 1:05, 1:03++
      • 04/01/14 - 1:21, 1:19, 1:14, 1:13
      • 04/14/14 - 1:20, 1:18, 1:13+, 1:11
      • 06/01/14 - 1:22, 1:20, 1:15+, 1:13
      • 06/27/14 - 1:20, 1:18, 1:14, 1:11+

    • Masters Minute during which I did an easy 50 kick
    • 2 x 200: on 3:20, build each stroke on #1, try to make #2 at your target 400 IM race pace divided by two (e.g., 2:20 in SCM, 2:05+ in SCY)
      • 09/17/13 - 2:49, 2:38
      • 09/23/13 - 2:49, 2:33
      • 10/06/13 - 2:45, 2:33
      • 10/10/13 - SCY - 2:28, 2:13+
      • 10/17/13 - SCY - 2:26, 2:15
      • 10/27/13 - 2:43, 2:32
      • 10/30/13 - 2:41, 2:30+
      • 03/04/14 - SCY - 2:24, 2:22
      • 03/15/14 - SCY - 2:27, 2:15
      • 04/01/14 - 2:47, 2:36
      • 04/14/14 - 2:48, 2:30
      • 06/01/14 - 2:43, 2:32
      • 06/27/14 - 2:43+, 2:31

    • 4 x 50: active recovery, on 0:45, 0:50, 0:55, 1:30
    • 1 x 400: IM on 6:00, AFAP, from blocks
      • 09/17/13 - 5:36 (ugh-o-rama)
      • 09/23/13 - 5:15
      • 10/06/13 - 5:10 (1:11, 1:19, 1:30, 1:10)
      • 10/10/13 - SCY from push - 4:36 (1:05, 1:09, 1:20, 1:02)
      • 10/17/13 - SCY from push - 4:38 (couldn't see splits in the sun)
      • 10/27/13 - 5:20 (1:13, 1:21, 1:32, 1:14)
      • 10/30/13 - 5:12 (1:14, 1:20, 1:28, 1:10)
      • 03/04/14 - SCY from push - 5:02 (if only the pool was SCM)
      • 03/15/14 - SCY from push - 4:40
      • 04/01/14 - 5:21 (no splits)
      • 04/14/14 - skipped it
      • 06/01/14 - 5:13 (from dive)
      • 06/27/14 - 5:08 (from dive) <= BEST EVER on this set

    • 4 x 50: active recovery, on 0:45, 0:50, 0:55

    TOTAL: 3,800 SCM

    • I guess all of the longer stuff and harder stuff I've been doing when I train with Peter is starting to pay off - my speed wasn't anything particularly great today, but the 400 straight at the end was really solid. I think the fastest I have ever gone on a 400 IM in workout is 5:04.
    • My summer work schedule has changed significantly and this will have benefits for my swimming:
      • My trip to India has been pushed off from early July to early September, due to a greater need for me to be at some key client meetings stateside in July.
      • What this means for my swimming is that I'll be able to train more consistently this summer and be able to race more.

    • Here's the revised racing plan:
      • July 5th & 6th - I've entered the 200 & 400 IM and the 1500 at the Arizona USAS Senior State Championship at ASU. I think I should be able to swim each of these events.
      • July 12th & 13th - I've entered a full boat of 8 events at the Swim Devil Masters Heat-stroker meet at Cactus ( We're already up to 31 entries, so this will be a huge meet compared to the recent one at Flagstaff. I might not get to swim everything as #3 daughter has her regional meet down at Kino/Mesa the same days. Fortunately, the Masters meet is an AM session and her meet is a mid-day session, so I'll get to race something.
      • July 26th & 27th - I've entered events on both days of our AZ State Meet in Tucson. If I can keep my training up, I'll go ahead and taper and shave for this. I'm still not sure if I can be there for both days, so have entered events on each day that will make me happy should I only get to one day of the meet.

  6. Splits & Partial Fort IMs

    by , June 14th, 2014 at 12:06 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    It's funny how, once you review your splits from a race, the race becomes either better or worse in your mind. In the case of my 1500 yesterday, it became much, much better looking at it from almost any angle ... except through the "you didn't go out hard enough!" lens.
    • 300 splits
      • 3:42.3
      • 3:43.2
      • 3:45.0
      • 3:41.5
      • 3:40.2

    • 500 splits
      • 6:11.1
      • 6:13.5
      • 6:08.7

    • Estimated 750 splits
      • 1st 750 ~9:18.0
      • 2nd 750 ~9.14.2

    I don't think I've ever swum such a balanced 1500 or 1650. Now, I just need to lop off 10 seconds per 300 and I'll have a super-nice swim

    I was supposed to swim with my sometimes-training-partner this morning, but both of our schedules negated that and so I was left to my own devices after work today. I hadn't made up a workout (expecting Peter to bring it this morning) and so dipped into one of my many bookmarked workouts (this one from Leslie, and then modified it to suit my time, energy and desires:

    Warm up (800 set)
    • 200 free w/snorkel
    • 200 IM drill - swim by 25s
    • 2x through (100 Pull w/buoy - 100 IM kick on back)

    Transition set #1 (1,000 set / 1,800 total)

    • 5 x 200 free pull w/buoy and paddles @ 2:45
      • Gentle descend from 2:36 to 2:30

    Main IM Set (1,700 set / 3,500 total)
    4 x (3 x 100)

    • #1 on 1:45 swim 50 fast stroke, 50 cruise free
    • #2 on 1:45 IM swim, descend by round to fast (1:23 -> 1:13+)
    • #3 on 2:00 kick w/board, 1st 25 blast

    3 x 50: active recovery w/snorkel on 0:50

    1 x 200: IM from dive, broken at 50s for 0:10, about 2:23/2:24

    3 x 50: active recovery w/snorkel on 0:50

    TOTAL: 3,500 SCM

    • Based upon how I felt after the race last night, I thought I was going to be completely knotted up today. Instead, I was just about 60% knotted up ... but the bit of speed work seemed to help break things up.
  7. 3rd best Masters 1500!

    by , June 13th, 2014 at 10:01 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    While there is little physical joy in the swimming of a long course 1500 save satisfied exhaustion and the ability to feel every single muscle in your body after you finish, thanks to my relatively 'immaturity' as a long course Masters swimmer, there is psychological joy in being able to say, "Hey, that was my third best ever Masters 1500!"

    Mind you, until I swam it last night at the Phoenix Summer Invitational, I had only ever swum three 1500s as a Masters swimmer ...
    • June 2009 - 18:54.28
    • June 2011 - 18:15.36
    • July 2011 - 17:49.02

    ... so it wasn't exactly a tall order to do this!

    The meet was held at ASU and had a very small turnout for the evening session of 11-12 400s and 11 & over 1500s, so, after scratches, I ended up in the 'fast' heat of the men in Lane 6. As the longest straight fast swim I had done thus far in long course 2014 was the 400 IM from last week's meet, I was understandably tentative taking this out. I don't have all of my splits (meet mobile is not updated), but here's what I could spy on the great ASU time board as I pushed off the wall at various turns:
    • 1st 100 - I wanted to feel very good and easy on this 100, but expected that I could do that and go right around 1:10. I saw a 1:12.7, but felt pretty good.
    • 1st 300 - If I was going to hit the 18:15, I needed to see something around 3:36 (to account for likely later dying), but was 3:42 low.
    • 2nd 300 - I picked up my stroke rate a bit over this distance and was hanging with the kid in lane 5; I believe I saw 7:25 at the 600 mark, which means the first two 300s were evenly split and that I was probably around 6:12/6:13 at the 500 mark.
    • Next 400 to get me to the 1,000 mark - Two things happened over this period. First, I started to feel the wonderful burn in my core that both puzzles me (as I almost NEVER feel that in my workouts) and reminds me to do some core work. Second, I think the 17 year old kid in lane 5 got sick of the 'old man' hanging with him and he put some distance on me. I think I saw 12:25 at the 1,000 mark, meaning I was probably again about 6:12/6:13 on the second 500.
    • For the last 500, while I was in pain and nothing about my stroke felt fluid or smooth, I did felt like I had enough energy to pick up the pace ... marginally. After the kid in lane 5 had left me, I really couldn't see anyone else in the heat and was swimming solo. I don't remember any of the splits except that I turned at the 1400 at 17:20 something. I was really hoping I could power home sufficiently under 1:10 to be able to get the overall time under 18:30, but touched at 18:32.23

    That time is not awesome, but respectable given the amount of long course training I've done. More than that, after 30+ years of 'fear' of racing the 1500 (honestly, I haven't swum a good 1500 since 1983) and in spite of the pain, I really enjoyed the swim. I am definitely going to try to race this again this summer - at a bare minimum, I'll go ahead and enter it at our summer state meet; on the extreme end, there might be up to three additional opportunities to race it.
  8. Kurt should blog

    by , June 11th, 2014 at 12:34 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    OK, doing a little bit of this now with the whole relay record thing, but Kurt wrote a much better account of the effort than I did - - along with some photos courtesy of my wife.

    To wrap up a very delayed meet report, I swam the 200 IM on Sunday morning and clocked a 2:25.79, a mere three seconds over my Masters best from Omaha. In contrast to my 400 IM, but similar to my 200 free, I took it out hard and then just held on. I had wanted to go under 2:26, so this made me very happy.

    I came back to the pool on Monday evening and cranked out the following with Peter in my pool - in pretty hot air conditions in the late, late afternoon --

    Warmup (1,500 set)

    • 5 x 200: on 3:20, 3:10, 3:00, 2:50, 2:40 descend as intervals get faster and go right into next set on the 5th interval
    • 5 x 100: on 1:30, 1:25, 1:20, 1:15, 1:10

    Set #1 (1,500 set / 3,000 total)
    3 rounds of:

    • 1 x 250: on 3:15 make it and descend by round (3:05, 3:03, 2:57)
    • 2 x 100: on 1:30 strong efforts, #2 faster than #1 each round
      • Was about 1:12/1:13 on the first one of each round and then 1:10, 1:09, 1:06+/1:07- by round on the second effort

    • 1 x 50: on 1:15 BLAST kick

    Set #3 (1,350 set / 4,350 total)
    3 rounds of:

    • 5 x 50: on 0:40 make it
    • 1 x 200: on 3:00 strong effort, descend by round to fast, started at 2:27, then went 2:25 and then blew out my calf with a cramp

    TOTAL: 4,300 (skipped a 50 due to the calf cramp on set #3)

    I was feeling pretty wrecked after Monday's swim, so just took today off since I'm entering my 'compete every weekend like Michael Andrew' phase and am racing the 1,500 on Thursday night at the Phoenix Invite ( I was 18:15 at this meet back in the summer of 2011, so I'd like to see how close I can come to that.
  9. Fast times @ "Old Guy" high

    by , June 9th, 2014 at 12:33 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    The stars managed to align on Saturday night of the Southwest Classic. Though I was skeptical things would actually come together until almost the start of the race, we managed to get four of us 'old guys' together to take a run at the 160-199 World Record in the 800 free:
    • Terry Debiase
    • Me
    • Kurt Dickson
    • Jeff Utsch

    The questions as to whether or not we could do this were numerous, including the 'big ones' like:
    • Would we all even be able to get there? Truly, until we each laid eyes on the others at Saturday morning's prelims, this was by no means a certainty.
    • Would we all be in some semblance of shape to take a realistic run at the record?
      • The record was 8:28.04, meaning we had to average 2:07.01 or better to get the record.
      • Terry and Jeff answered in the affirmative when they dropped a 2:06.60 and 2:04.80 in their prelim efforts of the 200.
      • Kurt and I, though, exited prelims with bigger question marks hanging over our heads.
        • Kurt was a 2:10.80 in his prelim 200.
        • While I didn't swim the 200, my Masters' best time was 2:07.88 from the summer of 2012. As I was well off both my 400 IM and 50 free best times, I think I was the biggest wildcard going into the evening.

    • Were we even entered in the event? In retrospect, this was all under control, but I freaked the guys out a bit as I didn't see us on the various heat sheets floating around.

    We were all representing Ford Aquatics and ended up as their C relay, in lane 5 of the first heat next to their B team, a mixture of teenagers and maybe 20-somethings. We were psyched, but still not sure this was an achievable goal even when the gun went off.

    The stands were fairly empty as this was the last event of the night, but Jeff Commings was the announcer and, as soon as Terry and the other leadoff swimmers dove in, Jeff said something to the effect of, "Hey, if you're looking for a team to cheer for, the guys in lane 5 are going for a Masters World Record." That got those people who were there behind us. It also helped that my daughters had told their team and coaches we were doing this so, while they didn't have a men's relay in the meet, they (and many of their parents in the stands) also took to cheering for us.

    Beyond the crowds, the Ford B team next to us was a great motivation. Terry went out right even with their leadoff swimmer and, though I couldn't see Terry's time as I went second, I figured he was under 2:07.

    By this point, Jeff Commings was keeping the crowds going on the mike, I was pretty pumped and pretty confident in some of the endurance oriented work I'd been doing since Nationals so I just decided to try to hang with the guy in the lane next to me (going 28.53 - 31.88 for a 1:00.41 at the 100). I kept my legs light through the 100 and still felt pretty good, staying fairly close with the guy next to me. I started to feel the burn around the 125 and the B team swimmer really started to pull away from me. I was feeling some nice pain by the 150 turn, but still thought I could turn my legs on the last 50. I think I did that for about 15-20 meters, but was really just falling apart. While I think this was about the biggest differential I've ever had in a 200 (coming home in 1:06.86), my 2:07.27 split was very strong for me, though above where I wanted to be to help the team.

    I touched the wall at 2:13.72, so we were under (BARELY) the pace as Kurt dove in. Kurt then pulled out all the speed that existed in his body (IMHO) - hitting the 50 turn at 28.0 on his feet, by far the fastest first 50 of any of us. He kept cranking throughout the entire 200, making up the entirety of the ground I had lost on the B team and then some. He turned in an AMAZING 2:06.03 ...

    ... as Jeff had gone a 2:04.8 in prelims and 2:04.0 in the C final earlier in the evening, we pretty much knew that Kurt's exceptional effort had sealed the deal on the record. Jeff, who was a bit bummed he hadn't seen a 2:03-something earlier in the night, swam his third, exceptional 200 of the night, touching the wall at 8:23.72, for a 2:03.97 split and the record, almost catching the B team at the end.

    While the celebration didn't last long, it was special - probably the best congratulations (in my book) were from the young guys we raced on the B team. I doubt we would've gone as fast as we did had we not had them there to race. We got lots of props from the officials, some of the other swimmers and, of course, my kids and their teammates (which included Kurt's daughter), and my wife.

    It was a very fun evening and, though I really didn't want to be the slow guy on the relay, it was all good in the end.
  10. Meet report: Cracked myself up

    by , June 7th, 2014 at 08:47 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    Everything worked like clockwork to get the family down to Tucson for my oldest daughter and I to swim a few events at the Ford Aquatics Southwest Classic:
    • On the road at 5:40am
    • Bagels, krispy kreme donuts and shots of espresso en route (maybe not the best breakfast of champions)
    • Pulled up to the pool at 7:30 where my wife dropped us off and took our youngest daughter and her friend over to see if they could check into the hotel early
    • They scored an ultra early room and my wife got to switch from watching the finish of women's final of the French Open from my iPad to an actual TV. Happy wife = happy life.
    • Got myself checked in, found a spot in the shade of the diving wells, found Kurt Dickson and a few of the other 'old guys' swimming in the meet

    While the meet certainly has some speed at the top end and more depth than I can handle for getting back to finals, there are not a huge number of swimmers entered and so the morning session ran pretty quickly. I got a nice 650 SCM warmup in the diving well before my 50 and then did about 400 to 500 SCM cool-down after each of my races. Here's how they went:

    50 free
    • Masters best: 27.17, Colonies Zones, June 2013
    • Today: 27.74
    • Commentary:
      • What can you really say about the 50 free in long course?
      • I kind of slipped on my back foot on the start and constantly kept thinking throughout the length of the pool, "Am I really not done yet?"
      • I then misjudged the finish and really glided into the wall.
      • In short, I really didn't do anything right!
      • But I enjoyed it, it was a great way to blow out the cobwebs and the time is not horrible for me.

    400 IM

    • Masters best: 4:58.10, Omaha Nationals, July 2012
    • Today: 5:09.99
    • Commentary:
      • I started laughing when I touched the wall and saw my time as my goal was to at least get under 5:10 (
      • I was very worried about getting through the fly leg, both because it was long course and due to my excessively speedy fly on my IM at Nationals, but I was probably overly cautious on this - going out in 1:11.4.
      • But, when I turned to backstroke, I was happy with my languid fly as I was able to get into my stroke and negative split that 100 (40.0 - 38.8), which is not a bad split as I was only 1:16.0 back in Omaha
      • My breaststroke felt pretty good throughout the 100, though I did wish for an extra wall at about the 75 mark. Still the 44.8 - 45.8 for 1:30.6 is also solid (e.g., 1:28.0 in Omaha).
      • It took me a bit longer to get into my freestyle and my 35.3 - 34.0 split means I should've pushed the first 50 a little bit harder, but I'll take it.
      • Back in 2012 on the first weekend in June, I was 5:07.89, so this time is on par with a year where I was swimming very strongly. Also, this was a marked improvement over the 5:17.76 I went last summer.

    Now, if all goes according to plan, we might be able to put together a fun relay tonight at the end of finals ... still working all the angles to make that happen.
  11. Dick Shoulberg - listen to the master

    by , May 30th, 2014 at 09:53 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    Dick Shoulberg is out visiting Scottsdale Aquatic Club for a few days working with the coaching staff there. One of our national team coaches started his career with Mr. Shoulberg back in the late 80s and it seems that he (Shoulberg) is now doing some consulting on behalf of USA Swimming. He's spending most of his time with the coaches and swimmers. My oldest daughter, being a distance swimmer and someone who still likes the old school sets, has come home from every workout with great stories about him and what he's sharing with them.

    Last night, he did a session with the parents that I just really loved. A lot of the talk was about his history, but it was peppered with great stories of a small number of the awesome swimmers who have come through his program. I really enjoyed those stories as the swim nerd in me either knew of the swimmers or, when he went back to the 80s, they were kids (then) I had raced against.

    He also talked a lot about his philosophy and the simplicity of it. Some of the highlights that I think are good advice for parents, swimmers and coaches:
    • He said he never had a practice attendance requirement - he wanted that drive to come from the kids themselves and for the kids to learn the lesson that, in general, more workouts equaled more success.
    • He was unabashedly "old school" and said that a big part of his training philosophy was to have his swimmers arriving at the blocks knowing that they were better conditioned, both mentally and physically, than anyone else they were racing.
    • He had advice for some of the younger parents - until kids are about at puberty, he really recommended they do at least one other sport besides swimming, and preferably that they did multiple other sports.
      • As with attendance, he wanted swimmers to choose to focus on swimming as they were hitting / in puberty rather than have the sport chosen for them as younger kids.
      • He really liked sports that promote overall body awareness like martial arts, gymnastics, dance.

    I got the chance to thank him, not just for the talk, but for the inspiration his program provided me when I was younger. Growing up in Virginia, all three of my coaches from middle through high school were big fans of 'animal lane' style workouts and the two 'model' programs that were held us as the best in the US were Germantown and Mission Viejo. Whenever our coaches wanted us to race great distance swimmers, we'd try to head up to the Philly/NJ area so we could race Shoulberg's kids (and, in that era, getting the double threat by also racing the Jersey Wahoos guys).

    I only wish I could get Mr. Shoulberg to come to my house tomorrow and give me a workout

    Oh yeah, demonstrating a good reason why Mr. Shoulberg should spend his Saturday with the kids instead of me, I took Thursday off from the pool.
  12. Summer Race Plan

    by , May 22nd, 2014 at 05:26 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    After 5 days a row in the water, I'm taking a day to stay dry, but, of course, my mind is still on swimming. I've cobbled together a bit of a race plan for the summer thus far ...

    June 7th & 8th - Southwest Classic in Tucson - confirmed
    As my oldest daughter is swimming the Southwest Classic at the U of A (, it's cross-sanctioned with USMS and I'm dropping #3 daughter and her friend off at the U of A swim camp that Sunday, I've entered a few events:

    • Saturday - 50 free and 400 IM
    • Sunday - 200 IM

    June 21st - Fast Times in the Cool Pines in Flagstaff - confirmed
    Everyone in the country really should descend upon the glorious mountain town on Flagstaff to have the ultimate swimming test - racing LCM at 7,000 feet. The entry form is up here -- -- and I've entered the following eclectic mix of events:

    • 400 free
    • 50 fly
    • 100 breast
    • 50 back
    • 100 free

    June 27th - Pacific Masters LCM Champs - possible (but not likely)
    If my business travel aligns in time to enter this meet (, I'll drop in to swim the 1,500 that Friday morning.

    July 3rd - Arizona State Senior Champs - USAS - possible (but not likely)
    The meet flyer's not up for this, but I'll see what event they are having on July 3rd and how it fits with my work and life. I had to register for USAS this year to swim the Southwest Classic, so I may as well go swim something. I'm hoping they have the 800 free on the 3rd as that would be fun to do. The meet's at ASU, which has excellent chillers for summer racing.

    July 12th-13th - Swim Devil Heatstroker - highly unlikely
    I am really bummed about this. For the first time in my 17 years of living in Arizona, there is a Masters meet being hosted (by Swim Devil Masters) at Cactus Pool, the wonderful LCM pool less than a mile from my house - Unfortunately, I am heading to India for work on July 4th and will get back home the evening of July 12th. In addition, #3 daughter will have her big meet of the summer that same weekend, so I'm 99% sure I will not be able to race here.

    July 26th or 27th - AZ State Meet in Tucson - fairly likely
    I should be around Arizona this weekend, don't appear to have any kid meet or vacation conflicts and should be able to head down to Tucson for at least one day of our State Championships meet -- I don't think I want to go down for both days, so will probably just pick whichever day imposes less 'hardship' on the household and then choose 4 events that look fun.

    This weekend's fun race watching
    I've got the joy of announcing the finals for this weekend's Cactus Classic meet at Cactus Pool - This will be much more awesome than recent years as the Ford team is coming up (e.g., with Grevers, Cordes, Steele, Geer, etc. entered), as well as some of the swimmers from ASU along with studs from Phoenix Swim Club like Roland Schoeman. It's certainly raised the bar for the club team swimmers to make the 'A' finals, but that's an awesome thing.

    Tonight's reminder I'm getting old
    #1 daughter has her high school graduation tonight. If that's not a nudge that I'm getting older, I don't know what else is. She is so stoked, though, to have this phase of life behind her and very much looking forward to starting at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver this fall. She'll swim there, of course, and I think it's going to be an awesome fit for her. So papa-proud of her!
  13. Clutz Brundage @ Austin Grand Prix

    by , January 19th, 2014 at 11:18 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I flew out with my daughter's team on Thursday afternoon to Austin for the Grand Prix meet and have been loving virtually everything about this trip.

    Our kids came off holiday training and didn't rest at all for the meet, so, while I think they are enjoying the overall experience (and certainly the girls are loving the photo ops with studs like Nathan Adrian), their swims, for the most part, are pretty consistent with an in-season meet. We've had a few girls make the C and D finals, with some swims that were faster than they anticipated, and one 13 year old is having a fantastic meet, dropping time in almost all of her events like 13 year olds are wont to do.

    The pool is more beautiful than ever and, having never really been a swim fan in the stands here, I can honestly say that this has got to be the best swimming watching venue. I don't think I fully appreciated how great the stands / viewing area are when I was here in 2008 for Nationals as I spent most of my time on the deck, but there are really no bad seats. We've been sitting near the turn end and never feel like we're missing anything. Here's a pic I took from our vantage point:

    As a swim-fan-geek, getting to just sit back and watch prelims and finals has been a treat. The sessions have been short enough that, once we get the kids to the pool, we can just chill and enjoy the swimming. Highlights for me through two days have been multi-fold:
    • Yannick Agnel's 1:45.76 200 free last night was pretty awe-inspiring. He made a field with guys like Mellouli, Matt McLean and others look like little boys. McLean swam a very respectable 1:48+ for second, but Agnel just crushed everyone from the start. I probably shouldn't say this, given that I only went 1:42+ in YARDS in my prime, but Agnel does something funky and hand-flippy on the recovery for one of his arms whenever his tempo gets high, like the 100 or 200. It looks like he could save a few hundredths on each recovery by not doing that ... but, the other nice thing about the vantage point from the stands is that you get a great view of his pull from the semi-aerial vantage point and that looks perfect.
    • Speaking of perfect, I think Connor Dwyer has the four prettiest strokes of any of the major swimmers out there. There's some talk on SwimSwam to the effect that he should forget the 400 IM because of guys like Clary and others in the world, but I hope he keeps pressing for that focus. He looked very in control last night.
    • Ledecky looks as great as ever, though I think she mis-judged Alison Schmitt's fitness in the 200 last night and let Schmitt get out too far ahead by the 150. It was great to see Schmitt win, but I think I was most impressed with Simone Manuel, who dropped a 1:59low and has demonstrated extreme versatility to go from the 50 to the 200. If Schmitt keeps on the road back to greatness, the USA women's 800 free relay will be unstoppable.
    • Speaking of Ledecky, we could see one of the oldest pool records fall tonight in the women's 800 as Janet Evans currently holds it at 8:23.59.
    • Speaking of super old records, Kim Linehan's 1500 pool record of 16:15.56 is downright ancient, probably dating from 1978 or 1979. Her Longhorn Team record of 16:04.49 was the world record back in 1979. Let's hope Carol Capitani is scouting some of the up & coming distance girls.
    • Now, I'll probably get crucified saying this, but, having seen Michael Andrew race both fly and free, I'm not as impressed as I think I should be. Don't get me wrong - the kid is obviously HUGELY fast, but is also HUGE. For a big kid, though, his distance per stroke seemed very short on both his fly and his free. He seems to be muscling through more than finessing. Now, I have only ever played a coach at the YMCA level with B-time level swimmers and online here, but I think that the Rushall guidance on not doing drills and working on technique at slower speeds might not be the right thing for the kid at this age. As they say in the military, "slow is smooth and smooth is fast" (
    • Speaking of smooth and fast, everyone knows this, but Natalie Coughlin has the best start of ANY sprinter, male or female. If only Anthony Ervin could take some start training lessons from her, he'd get Adrian every time.

    I could go on and on. Much like my training geek weekend last weekend with Terry Laughlin and others on Total Immersion, my mind is getting jam packed with swim ideas.

    Now, with all the goodness and fun from above, there has been one part of this weekend that has downright sucked. Walking back to the parking garage on Friday after prelims with Kurt Dickson and his wife (the other team chaperones with me), I looked to Kurt to say something and paid no attention to the fact that the sidewalk was curving. I set my right foot on the edge of a sloping curb, proceeded to roll down the curb and roll my foot further into a pothole that was at the edge of the road. EXTREME PAIN. I managed to hobble the rest of the way to the parking garage, but, by the time we got back to the hotel, I couldn't put any weight on it whatsoever. Thanks to my daughter (who scammed a wheelchair at the hotel, an ACE wrap at a drug store and some ice) and then Kurt (who checked it out and figured it was sprained and then got me some crutches later), I've been managing to get around, but the foot still looks ugly:

    By this morning, I've finally been able to put light pressure on the foot and am down to using a single crutch more like a cane. Needless to say, any plans to drop in with Nitro Masters, Longhorn Masters or to a Y for swimming this weekend were shot. I do hope to at least try to swim again on Monday when I am back home.
  14. Swim Racing Treats

    by , March 1st, 2013 at 04:50 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    I'm not going to end up getting in the pool today as work, one sick kid and then my second daughter's participation in the Arizona Senior State Championship meet will get in the way of training. In exchange for training, though, I'm going to get a real treat watching that meet tonight as:
    • Men's 100 free final tonight includes Matt Grevers, Roland Schoeman and Darian Townsend.
    • Men's 200 breast includes both Austen Thompsen and Clark Burckle

    I hope they don't scratch as this should make for great viewing.
  15. Nationals Entry

    by , February 6th, 2012 at 02:36 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    Taking a rest day today, but signed up for Nationals. I'll be avoiding the distance gods of the 45-49 age group on Thursday and swimming this mix of events:


    • 400 IM
    • 100 fly


    • 100 IM (6th event)
    • 200 fly


    • 500 free
    • 200 IM

    This gives me a focus event each day (400 IM, 200 fly and 500 free) and a fun event each day. I've got my sisters and father lined up for some fun family relays on Friday and Saturday, so now I need to get the custom caps and t-shirts made up for "Brundage Swim Masters." Hotel reservation is made and I'm stoked on all fronts except the flights: it appears USAirways has dropped the direct PHX ->RDU flight that I assumed I would get on (and get upgraded on). I'll work this coming weekend on figuring out flights.

    Also confirmed today that the 1650 SCY I thought I was going to swim on Friday, Feb 17th at a kids meet is actually a 1500 LCM (the flyer was a bit confusing). I was kind of hoping it was going to be SCY, but this will still be fun. I swam it LCM twice in the same pool last summer (Phoenix Swim Club), so it'll be a good barometer for how my training's going.
  16. 400 LCM IM ...

    by , January 28th, 2012 at 07:48 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    ... with emphasis on the LONG.

    Man, I was still feeling the 1000 from last night, even after a solid 1,950 SCYs of warmup. I knew I couldn't try to be a hero on the butterfly (1:09.7), but kind of thought I'd have a little more to give on the backstroke (1:19.2) and breaststroke (1:29.8). I did manage to bring home the free nearer to my fly split than I have been lately (1:10.2), but my total time of 5:08.97 was a little slower than I had wanted to go. Last year I was 5:06.99 in early March at the Victoria meet; I was kind of hoping to be at that same time today. Given that I had been training harder/longer last year by March than I have this year by this weekend, though, I'll take it.

    The kids all swam very well today, especially #3 this afternoon.

    Highlight races of the morning was watching Roland Schoeman drop a 22.9 in the 50 LCM free and a 55.2 in the 100 LCM fly. He's training over at Phoenix Swim Club and they brought a solid team over.

    Tomorrow it's down to Tucson to swim with people my own age -- Events are 200 back, 100 free, 50 back, 100 back and 200 breast.
  17. Majorly chicked

    by , January 27th, 2012 at 09:55 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    ... by a little girl!

    I lost the bet big time to my daughter in the 1000 tonight. We went into the meet with best times as follows:

    • Her - 10:23.50
    • Me - 10:22.63 (from Hawaii Nats in '02)

    The results paint a far different picture:

    • Her - 10:14.28
    • Me - 10:25.35

    She crushed me, made her first NCSA Juniors cut and got a USAS Juniors Bonus Cut with that. It's clear that the distance torch has not only been passed, she's now running away with it. This proud papa will be heading out to Sweet Republic ( in short order to settle up my debt.

    As for my swim, here are my thoughts:

    • I'm pretty stoked with the time given where I am in my training. I was thinking this was going to be my only 1000 of the season, but I'll definitely do it again, probably at the AZ State Champs. I think a sub 10:10 time is in my future.
    • As for race execution, it all went according to plan for about 350 to 400 yards and I was hanging on the hips to knees of the two kids who ended up going 9:58s:
      • 57.1
      • 1:00.4
      • 1:00.5
      • 1:02.4

    • At the 400, split for split, I was 3 seconds ahead of my daughter, me at 4:00.40 and she at 4:03.49 ... but there's where the conditioning (or lack thereof) came into play as my next six 100s paint a much more painful picture
      • 1:04.0
      • 1:03.9
      • 1:04.4
      • 1:04.8
      • 1:04.7
      • 1:03.9

    • My youngest daughter video'd it (no I won't punish you by posting it) and I noticed 4 things that I really need to focus on:
      • Stop looking at the wall before the turns
      • Keep my head looking down more during my stroke
      • As I've been feeling for awhile, I am indeed crossing over on my left hand entry. It looks like I quickly adjust and get it outside the center line for the pull, but there's wasted effort.
      • As I got tired, I also started doing the same thing with my right hand when I breathed to the right side.

    • All-in-all, I'm quite pleased with the race ... even if my baby beat me.
  18. Three strikes ...

    by , January 25th, 2012 at 12:31 AM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    ... and I should've been out, but I persisted.

    The strikes were:

    1. Got to Lifetime all pumped to do my 8 x 200 heart rate test set ... and realized I left my diving slate at home
    2. I got through 300 of my warmup in the SCM pool ... only to be stopped by the assistant aquatics director who told me that the pumps had been down since the morning, they thought they were going to get fixed, but they weren't and so they were closing the pool. He was very apologetic and even considered letting me when I said, "I'll sign my life away ... heck, I've swum in Tempe Town Lake ... how dirty can this be?" But, of course, if I swam, then he'd have to let other people swim.
    3. They are still not heating the outdoor pool so my only option was to swim in the kids play pool, which has 3 lanes ... and was probably 85 or 86 degrees.

    The only positive was that the aquatics guy confirmed that the kids pool was 54 feet across. It does puzzle me as to how Lifetime could have gotten so many things right (e.g., 25 M course, backstroke flags, digital clocks, top quality lane ropes) in the main lap pools and then built some "lap lanes" as part of the kids pool that weren't some logical width. 20 yards would've made more sense. Oh well, I got to do a lot of 108s and 216s today!

    After the 1st 300, the distances are yards:

    • 1 x 300 (scm): 100 free, 200 IM k/d
    • <interlude discussion with aquatics director>
    • 1 x 216: easy free
    • 4 x 108: on 1:40, gentle descend free (1:11, 1:10, 1:09, 1:06+)
    • 4 x 108: on 2:00, descend IM kick w/board
    • 6 x 54: on 1:00, #1 & #6 easy free, #2 to #5 IM build
      • I did get stopped by the 75 year old lady in the lane next to me after my fly ... she very nicely wanted to compliment me on my stroke ... and then kept talking, and talking, and talking

    • 6 x 36: on 0:40, 1st three were 1/2 lap fast - 1/2 lap easy, next 3 were easy
    • 8 x 216: on 3:30, 70% - 80% - 90% - 100% -100%- 90% - 80% - 70% perceived effort by 216
      • 2:26, 2:20, 2:17, 2:13+, 2:12+, 2:15, 2:19, 2:20

    • 6 x 36: 2 each active recovery on 0:30, 0:35, 0:40

    TOTAL: ~3,900 SCY


  19. FASTival Finals

    by , November 13th, 2011 at 04:13 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    aka "still not a sprinter!"

    100 IM I watched the 13 yr old kid clock a 57 low and figured I could get to 57 high. I might have done that except that I completely crashed into the lane line on my backstroke, finishing with a bloody middle finger in 58.74 and in 3rd place, I think. One of the club's 16 year old sprinters (21.6 in 50) was 57.2 and I think someone else beat me. No idea where that time stands in my realm of untapered swims, but I don't think it's great.

    The 50 fly was much better @ 25.52, but I got beat by 0.25 by the kid who I had outtouched on the 100 fly. Like the 100, though, having him there made me better.

    I loved this meet and, in particular, loved how great my fly felt. Gotta run to officiate the afternoon session.
  20. FASTival Semi-Finals

    by , November 13th, 2011 at 01:42 PM (Of Swimming Bondage)
    The rain fortunately stopped and it was just a bit cold for the 1st session this morning. I felt sluggish in my 1500 warmup, but tried to rev myself up with a lot of build and fast 25s. What really revved me up before the 200 IM was watching a 13 and a 14 year old boy from our team going 2:03.0 and 2:03.6. Having gone 2:09.2 last weekend and having a jammers best time of 2:01+, I knew I had my work cut out for me to try to represent the old guys. I wish I could've raced those guys as I was 2:03.42, an awesome swim for me, but the next senior guy was a couple of seconds behind me. I wonder if the extra competition swimming with the younger boys could've pushed me sub 2:03. Still, this is great and, like the 200 fly, gives me great confidence in getting under 2 in Greensboro.

    Before I got up for the 100 fly, the same 13 year old boy cranked out a 55.3. Based upon my 200 and my best 100 @ 54 mid, I figured a 56 low would make me happy. Fortunately, in this race, I had. 15 year old next to me who pushed me wire-to-wire, me ending up @ 55.58 and he @ 55.66. I haven't had much direct competition until that race, but it totally helped to bring out a different gear.

    About 30 minute break between sessions and then we go to the 100 IM and 50 fly.
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