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Masters Swim Meets / Events

Meet / OW event plans and results from U.S. Masters Swmming events in this category.

  1. 2020 Swimming Year in Review

    by , January 3rd, 2021 at 05:50 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    Haven't posted in months. I've been swimming, but mostly longer sets, more geared for open water swimming.

    I used to do a wrap-up for swimming, so here goes:

    Pools/open water I swam at in 2020 (roughly in order from Jan 1 onward):

    * 24 Hour Fitness: Round Rock, Texas
    * Sendero Springs Pool: Round Rock, Texas
    * Barton Springs Pool: Austin, Texas
    * Oryx Airport Hotel Swimming Pool, Doha Qatar
    * Brunswick Baths: Melbourne, VIC Australia
    * Williamstown Beach: Melbourne, VIC Australia
    * Portsea Beach: Portsea, VIC Australia (2500 & 1500m o/w swim events)
    * Centenary Aquatic Center: Brisbane, QLD Australia
    * The Valley Pool: Brisbane, QLD Australia
    * Port Willunga Beach: Port Willunga, SA Australia
    * Olympic Aquatics Centre, London UK
    * Deep Eddy Pool, Austin, TX
    * Emma Long Park/Lake Austin: Austin, TX
    * Creek Side Pool: Round Rock, TX
    * Low Water Crossing/Fritz Hughes Park/Lake Austin: Austin, TX
    * Scenic & Matthews Park/Lake Austin: Austin, TX
    * Highlands at Mayfield Ranch Community Pool: Round Rock, TX
    * Abiquiu Lake: Abiquiu, NM
    * Lake Nighthorse: Durango, CO
    * Bear Lake: Garden City, UT (the Bear Lake Monster swim event, 10k)
    * Rifle Gap Reservoir: Rifle, CO
    * Deer Creek Reservoir: Wallsburg, UT (the Deer Creek 10k swim event)
    * Strawberry Reservoir: Heber City, UT
    * Great Salt Lake: Magna, UT
    * Tennessee River: Chattanooga, TN

    All of the swims are in the USA, unless noted otherwise (I traveled to Australia and London in January).

    Despite limited swimming in March (I swam 17 days in March, my last on 3/18) and April (I got back in Lake Austin at Emma Long Park on 4/6 and swam 10 times/32 miles in April) the year ended up being by far my highest volume year ever. I've been keeping track since 2011, and I certainly don't think I swam this much prior to that:

    My 24 Hour Fitness gym has closed permanently; they have re-opened some other locations in town, but I just didn't feel comfortable going they are much further. I bought a 2 year pass from Costco, and they gave me a refund for half of it (I had used more than that).

    My local pool, Sendero Springs, re-opened on May 18. Initially they had some very generous hours, but unfortunately that didn't last. I really can't complain though, as I pay $60/year for my pool pass, and the hours are good enough that I can work with them.

    Austin pools briefly re-opened in early June. I swam at Barton Springs once; you had to reserve a session (the sessions were 90 minutes), they cleared the pool between sessions, etc. I did it once, it was ok, but then I decided the lakes were better.

    I've lived in metro Austin for 5 years now, and before this year I had only swum in local lakes for organized swim events. When the pools were closed a friend told me that he was swimming in Lake Austin at Emma Long park. I looked it up... The water temp was a bit brisk when I first swam (low/mid 60s), but it was either that or no swimming. I adjusted, and actually liked swimming there. Until late May, when the lake got too busy with boats, jet skis, and other stuff. So I moved upriver to Low Water Crossing. This is just beneath the Mansfield Dam, that forms Lake Travis. The water comes from deep down in Travis, so it is very cold...some readings we had were 58-64F. Since I had signed up for the Bear Lake swim, the cool water swimming worked perfectly.

    I swam 2 more organized swims, in July and August, both in Utah. The Bear Lake Monster (10k) swim was simply amazing, but tough. The water was so clear, and very blue. It was my slowest 10k swim yet, as there is considerable chop (tons of boat traffic, and it is a big lake), but I really enjoyed it. Deer Creek is another good swim; the lake conditions are pretty good. Most of this swim takes place in a cove without boat traffic. I'd highly recommend both of these swims.

    Overall, as far as swimming in 2020, I can't complain at all. I made the most of it.

    Here is a list of events I'm thinking of for 2021:

    * the SC_R legs of the SCAR Lake Swims in Arizona
    * The USMS open water championship (both days) in Boerne, TX
    * Great Salt Lake 10k
    * Bear Lake Monster swim 10k
    * Deer Creek reservoir 10 mile (with this I'd complete the Utah, "triple crown")
    * Swim the Suck, 10 miles on the Tennessee river near Chattanooga
    * at least some (or maybe all) of the Highland Lakes Challenge, here near Austin, TX

    It is a bit aggressive, with something every month from April to October, except September. We'll see what events actually happen, and what happens with my body through the year, and go from there.

    Not sure what the local meet schedule will look like. If there's a local LCM meet at the Austin Swim Club again (and I feel safe doing it), I'll do that one, usually in June. Our zone usually has a meet in late July/early August, and again, I'll probably do that if I can work it in with everything else.

    Here's a collage of some swimming memories from 2020:

    Updated January 5th, 2021 at 09:36 PM by aztimm

    Masters Swim Meets / Events , Planning
  2. 2019: Year in Review

    by , December 31st, 2019 at 03:57 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    Although I hadn't been blogging nearly as much, 2019 was probably my biggest swimming year ever!

    Here is the list of pools that I've swum in:
    1. Highlands @ Mayfiled Ranch Community Pool, Round Rock, TX
    2. Sendero Springs Community Pool, Brushy Creek TX
    3. Georgetown (TX) City Pool (indoor), Georgetown TX
    4. 24 Hour Fitness Round Rock, Round Rock, TX
    5. Creekside Pool, Brushy Creek TX
    6. Deep Eddy Pool, Austin TX
    7. Barton Springs Pool, Austin, TX
    8. Walker Pool, Temple TX
    9. Kino Aquatic Center, Mesa AZ
    10. Eldorado Pool, Scottsdale AZ
    11. CYC Pool, Wilkes-Barre PA
    12. Austin Swim Club, Austin TX
    13. Fuller Park Pool, Ann Arbor MI

    (no international travel for me in 2019, but that will change in 2020)

    I swam in the following events in 2019:
    1. Attempt at Saguaro Lake, SCAR swim, AZ (made it about 9.5 miles)
    2. Roosevelt Lake, SCAR swim, AZ (10k)
    3. USMS Spring Nationals, Kino Aquatic Center, Mesa AZ
    4. South Texas Summer LCM Meet, Austin Swim Club, Austin TX
    5. Swim to the Moon (10k), Hell MI
    6. Bridges to Bluffs (10k), Knoxville TN
    7. Lake LBJ (3 miles) of Highland Lakes Challenge, Kingsland TX
    8. Lake Marble Falls (2 miles) of Highland Lakes Challenge, Marble Falls TX
    9. Lake Travis (5k) of Highland Lakes Challenge, Spicewood TX

    All-in, I swam over 641 miles in 2019, which is 110 miles more than my previous record, back in 2014. I hit record months of swimming for 7 months of the year (and no record lows). Here is my GTD Summary:

    Some highlights (other than the events):
    * I did my longest swims ever this year! Longest pool swim, longest o/w swim, etc.
    * This was the most swimming events that I've ever done in a year. Heck, 2 meets a year is nearly a record for me alone, but add in all the o/w events, and it certainly is a record.
    * Along with all of the swimming, I got involved in both my USMS LMSC and became a member of a national USMS committee (the D&I committee). I attended my first USMS convention, which was an experience in itself.
    * I met some incredible people throughout the year, all with a passion for the sport. Sure some are super athletes, while others are new. I'm always in awe at USMS nationals when the 80+ year-old heats swim.
    * I swam at Barton Springs more in 2019 than all other years combined. Almost every Sunday over the summer I made an early morning trek down, sometimes swimming 3+ hours. It is an incredible venue to have close by (about 30 min away), and great for o/w training.
    * I really enjoyed repeating the Highland Lakes swim. I hadn't done shorter o/w swim events in a few years, and after swimming longer stuff during the year, the short stuff at the end felt so fun. Plus it is nice to sleep at home and drive out in the morning. And Marble Falls is such a great place! (if anyone wants a good o/w swim, I can't recommend this one enough)
    * For the first time in my life (that I can recall), I swam on Christmas Day! Barton Springs was open ('swim at own risk') and it was such a blissful way to spend the day.

    Looking forward to 2020, here is what I'm looking at:
    * I'll swim my earliest o/w event (probably any swimming event) in the year ever. I'll be in Australia in a few weeks and a friend signed me up for the Portsea 2500m swim (outside of Melbourne). This will also be my first international swimming event.
    * I signed up for the S and R (Saguaro and Roosevelt) legs of SCAR again. We'll see if I'm successful with Saguaro if I want to do any longer swims. Otherwise, I don't mind just doing 10k events
    * Tentatively looking at the Deer Lake, Utah (10k) o/w swim in August
    * Considering either a repeat of Bridges to Bluffs (10k) or Swim the Suck (10 miles) in the fall of 2020. If I get in (sounds like it sells out in minutes), I'll do Suck, otherwise I really enjoyed B2B (so rare to have an o/w event where I can stay downtown and walk to the race start!)
    * Probably do Highland Lakes again to finish up 2020. Maybe I'll do the whole thing? That would be a change, Buchanan (the first) is a 10k!
    * As for meets, I'll probably swim in our Zone SCY meet in March (at University of Houston), and probably our local LCM meet again over the summer. Maybe a day or 2 at USMS spring nationals in San Antonio (this is the week before SCAR).

    I met a separate goal this year. It was very silly, but without even trying, I was getting close to visiting all 50 states. With doing B2B this year, I was adding Tennessee, and I visited a cousin in Kentucky around that event. So we made trips to Montana, Iowa, and Nebraska, and I ended up turning 50 in my 50th state (and visited 2 gals I went to high school with too).
    On that note, I'd like to try doing a swimming event of some sort (meet or o/w) in every state. I've only done this in a few so far, so I'm building up again.

    Most important of all, my most recent mantra has been, "keep it fun." Years ago I thought I wanted to swim the English Channel some day. Well after 4+ hours in Saguaro in April, and the aftermath of that, I wasn't having much fun and don't think I want to think of the English Channel (solo, I'd definitely consider a relay). So I'm looking for swimming events that are mostly 10k or less (and an occasional 10 mile).
    A lifeguard recently asked me, "are you training for something or do you just like to swim?" I didn't know how to answer the question. If I don't like to swim, why would I train for anything? But I do like having some things on my calendar, it gives me a reason to get myself out of bed, especially on dark/chilly mornings, or on days when I'd rather turn over and sleep in (sleeping in is good sometimes too!)

    Updated December 31st, 2019 at 04:33 PM by aztimm

    Swim Workouts , Masters Swim Meets / Events , Planning
  3. Saturday 06082019: Local meet, and Sun-Mon workouts

    by , June 10th, 2019 at 05:57 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    I did my 2nd, "meet," of the year on Saturday, which is rather rare. I haven't done more than one meet in a year (if at all in a year) in at least 15 years.
    when I saw the number of entrants per event on Friday, any hopes of being near my seed times (let alone any PB's) were quickly dashed.

    the meet was at the Austin Swim Club, way in the southwest part of town (a good 45 min drive for me). they have a tiny parking lot right there, which was full, so I had to park in a garage at a nearby office complex and hoof it over.
    I had signed up for the max/5 events
    there were 60 swimmers at the event.

    w/u: about 1200m. a little short of what I wanted (about 1500), but not bad. I hadn't been in a 50m pool in almost 2 years, but with the o/w training I've been doing, it really wasn't too rough of a transition to LCM.

    Event #2: 200 breast.
    My PB: 3:13.81, way back in 2003, when I was actually training breaststroke
    I swam a 3:17.59 back in 2011, when I was about 20 pounds lighter (running marathons/cycling).
    Saturday's time: 3:25.13 (I had seeded 3:33), not bad, considering that I'm not really training breast like I used to.

    Event #4: 400 free (I got about 2 minutes of rest after the 2breast):
    My PB: 5:37.30, back in 2012
    Last swim (2017): 5:48.16
    Saturday's time: 6:01.98 (my seed was 5:50). I'm not sure that more rest would have given me 10+ seconds, but I'm sure it would have helped.

    Event #7: 200 free (I did a 200 between events, relaxed a little)
    My PB: 2:46.19 (2002, the only time I swam it before)
    Saturday's time: 2:55.05 (had seeded at 2:40)

    Event #11: 100 breast (did 300 easy between events)
    My PB: 1:29.43 (2010, just slightly ahead of my 2002 time)
    Saturday's time: 1:36.65 (had seeded at 1:38)

    Event #15: 50 breast
    My PB: 41.35 (2010, and I spaced off the blocks and did a bunch of dolphin kicks, but no one noticed)
    Saturdays's time: :44.07 (had seeded :48)

    After that I did a 300 cool down, then got out, showered, and we had our LMSC meeting on-site. I'm an at-large board member so I figured since I was going to the meeting anyway, I might as well swim.

    Overall meet thoughts:
    I registered and swam way too many events for a 2-hour meet. I imagined there would be at least 2-3 heats of 100 fly in between my 2breast and 4free (perhaps several heats of 2breast too). there was 1 heat of 2breast (3 swimmers).
    basically if I do a meet like this again, no more than 3 events, if I want them to be anywhere near PB's.
    It was nice to catch up with some guys who I used to swim with when there was a masters group at Sendero, and I think I convinced at least 1 to join me for some crazy swims at Barton Springs (still working on the other). I met a few guys from the team who I affiliate with (when I saw my name highlighted on a heat sheet it almost freaked me out). and I met a guy from a swimming Facebook group. so there's that.

    given my focus on open water, I expected my breast times to be slower, and they were, but all better than my seed times, so that's a plus.
    I really wanted my free events to be better...but I think it was just a lack of rest. I did the 5free at nationals (the first event of the day), and put that time into swimswam's calculator to get a time estimate (then added a few seconds), but I just had no recovery (well that's my excuse at least).

    I'm debating if I will do the zone LCM meet next month, at Texas A&M. I did it 2 years ago. fantastic facility. usually gets a decent amount of swimmers (about 250), so enough time between events to swim down/warm-up and relax, but not endless like at nationals.
    competing with zones is the Bear Lake 10k (in Utah). definitely a bit more pricey (flights, probably 4 nights in hotels, rental car). but that is my thing right now.

    Sunday PM swim @ gym pool:
    drove to Sendero, but they were closed, some issue with chemicals. drove to Creekside, but they had 2 lap lanes set up, and both looked crazy. so I drove to the gym and had a lane to myself (a guy asked to circle with me just as I was finishing up).
    got in 4500 yards, not really anything inspiring. really wanted to swim to work on any soreness from the meet. there were 3 x 500s, one with fins, one without toys, and one with Agility paddles + buoy.

    Monday AM swim @ gym pool
    again, drove to sign of life. so went to the gym, and had my own lane.
    1200 w/u
    100 kick w/fins + board
    4 x 125 w/fins, done as 25 drill/25 swim/25 stroke/25 swim/25 drill
    100 kick w/fins + board
    500 swim w/fins
    100 kick w/fins + board
    5 x 300 @ 4:30 swim (no toys)
    300 w/Agility paddles + buoy
    250 swim w/parachute (free)
    250 w/d
    TTL: 4800 yards

    --my first 300 (of the 5) seemed very slow. so much that I did it on 4:35, and thought I'd need to do the rest on that interval. but the others just really clicked and I kept the 4:30 (was always on :05 or :35). maybe I should have done 100 easy without toys first. could have been going from kicking, who knows. times were 4:23, 4:12, 4:13, 4:17, and 4:17, then 4:08 with the toys.
    --I'm trying to swim at least 200 with a chute during most of my swims now. it is supposed to simulate swimming against a current/wind and be good for o/w training. I had planned to swim 300, but miscounted. that time was 4:42, so it really does slow me down.
  4. Fri-Sat 0721-07222017: USMS South Central Zone Meet

    by , July 22nd, 2017 at 11:04 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    firstly, I did go to the gym on Thursday, and did a usual chest/triceps workout. and yes, I regretted it during the meet.

    I did go to swim workout on Friday morning, but only swam about 2200 yards. water was very warm. the coach helped me and the other guy going with a good meet warm-up. she seemed upset that she wouldn't see us live (she was on her way to a vacation in Colorado right after workout).

    then the meet.

    I'll do something different this time. rather than give specifics on each race, I'll give an overview of my thoughts.
    I did swim the 1500m free on Friday, then on Saturday I did all of these:
    * 400m free
    * 100m breast
    * 100m free
    * 50m back

    the good:
    * the Texas A&M nautatorium is fantastic! I'd have to say the best pool that I've done a meet in (the list is quite limited), and one of the best pools I've ever been in.
    * water was nice and cool. when I first jumped in to warm up it felt a bit brisk. especially compared with swimming outside at Sendero.
    * the meet was very well run. plenty of timers, and counters for the 1500. they were pretty close, maybe even a bit ahead, of the timeline they posted.
    * I won my age group for both the 1500 and 400 free. (there was just 1 other for 1500 and 2 for the 400). I also got a PB for the 50 back--since I had never swum it before.
    * they actually gave out real medals for 1-2-3 place. I remember getting ribbons at some meets ages ago, and a medal for the Statue of Liberty swim, but can't remember getting a real medal for a swim meet ever.
    * I beat my teammate in our 100m free smackdown race! we were seeded in lanes 4 & 5 (we didn't plan it). he was ahead, then I gave what I had left in the last 20m or so...and came in .20 ahead! we have a video, I'll have to upload a video someone took for us.
    * swimming long course didn't seem as much of a shock as I expected. I think doing the o/w swim 2 weeks ago helped.
    * it felt like there were enough people there for good competition.
    * they had touchpads at both sides of the pool, so there are splits every 50. I don't think I've ever seen that before.

    the bad:
    * this is probably one of my worst meet performances in years. I thought I padded all of my seed times and don't think I made any. some were close.
    * I wish people would seed themselves with realistic seed times. at least put forth a guess. if you swim with a coach, ask them for something realistic. yea, it sucks to wait around to swim the 1500 in the 4th heat, but sandbagging your time to 50 min, then coming in at 19 min isn't cool.
    * with the location in College Station, about 2 hours from the DFW, Houston, and Austin areas, there's no excuse to get more than 200 swimmers. there must be at least 4000 masters swimmers in those areas. and it seemed there were more from San Antonio--even further--than anywhere else.
    * hate to say it, but I think I'm actually dolphin kicking too much. for the 100 free video, my teammate did 3 strokes before I surfaced, just beside him. I think 5-6 may be better than the 8 I've been doing. and get more out of them. unless I'm doing a 100 IM, I'll do as many as I can' to avoid actually swimming fly

    the ugly:
    * as I said earlier, I should not have lifted on Thursday. at around the 1000-1100m mark of my 1500 my chest started to feel like it was on fire.
    * I just couldn't seem to get things going for my breaststroke. I felt like I was swimming in slow motion. need to do more breast....and fast, maybe 25s.
    * I didn't quite recover from the 1500 on Friday night, then did the 400 free first thing Sat morning. it definitely wiped me out. I have no idea how people would go back for more on Sunday. I fell asleep around 10pm, but woke up around 4:30am and couldn't get back to sleep.

    The full results, with all of the splits are posted here:

    I have decided that I need to do more meets. I seem to go kicking and screaming, but once I'm there I have a good time. Hopefully there's a decent venue for the zone SCM meet this fall. perhaps even something local. and get over my pool snob bit. almost any pool is going to be better than my gym, Sendero, and community pools. and any is better than staying home.
  5. Sunday 07092017: o/w swim @ Cedar Hill SP, TX

    by , July 9th, 2017 at 09:27 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    I had registered for this o/w swim back in December...almost forgot that I even had. since I got in so early, I only paid $30 to register, I was on the fence if I'd even show up until a few days ago. but I figured that I hadn't done any o/w yet this year, so this should be a good swim.

    I drove up yesterday. packet pickup was at a bike shop in Richardson, TX--which is way up on the other side of town! I was glad I went straight there before heading back to my hotel, which was about 10 min from the lake.

    arrived at the venue about 6:45. there was supposed to be a briefing with starts beginning at 7:30, with mine at 7:45. due to storms late yesterday, they were delayed to re-attach the buoys. I think I started around 8:15.

    took this picture when I first arrived:

    then this one just before starts:

    I did this swim last year, but it was in a different lake in the DFW area. this lake was much more convenient for getting to/from the Austin area (although with the I-35 traffic I use the term convenient loosely).

    anyway, they divided us into 4 groups:
    * women doing shorter swims (+ run)
    * men doing shorter swims (+ run)
    * women doing swim only (4k)
    * men doing swim only (4k)

    the 4k was 3 loops around a large square (the others had 1-2 loops around a smaller section)

    official water temp was 80F (air was in mid-70s at start, mid-80s at finish)

    I'd guess there were about 50 guys in my wave to start. the mosh-pit was very brief, maybe a minute, then cleared out nicely. right after that it seemed like I started catching some of the earlier groups.
    I was on a guy who was going at a good pace...but he turned with the swim + run group.
    after that I continued to pass women for that first leg.
    just as I was about to turn into the 2nd lap I could feel my cap getting loose. now for every o/w swim where I have to wear a cap I always joke, "maybe my cap will fall off." I didn't think it actually would...but I could feel my head cooling off, then next thing the cap was gone. I made no effort to keep it on or retrieve it, and felt so much better without it.

    the second lap was mostly uneventful.

    the third lap started out ok, just passing more women and even a few men. about halfway through this loop the chop really started to pick up (boats out on the lake). I made a turn and must have taken a bunch, had to do some breaststroke and clean out my lungs for a bit (a kayaker asked if I was ok, so I must have sounded bad).

    my, "official," time is 56:01, which I don't really believe. my Apple watch reported a time of 1:14, from when i first stepped in the water (deduct a little from that), 956 cal, but it didn't record a distance.

    overall, it was a good experience and I'm glad I went.

    next up: the zone LCM meet in 2 weeks at Texas A&M. I haven't swum in a meet for 4-5 years
    then I have the Hazleton, PA o/w in late Aug.
    probably part of the Highland Lakes swim (here in the Austin area) in Oct.
  6. Sat 121423013 NE Meet & Mon 12162013 workout

    by , December 16th, 2013 at 12:08 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    I did swim at the NE Masters meet on Saturday, but I had to scratch my last event (50 breast), due to catching a flight and the meet running behind schedule.

    400 free, I think 5:17
    200 breast, I think 3:12

    I'm having trouble accessing the results online.

    I think my 400 was about 2 sec slower than last year. I was the slowest person (in a wall lane) in the heat. The guy in the next lane finished in 4:55.

    The 200 breast was a bit better. I could only see maybe 1 person the whole race, and I wasn't in a wall lane

    overall, it was a good meet. I'll definitely be back next year.

    went up to Kino for the AM masters swim workout
    Paul coached solo

    got in 200 easy w/u

    warm-up sets:
    4 x 25 fist drill @ :30
    4 x 50 @ :50
    200 kick (used fins + board)

    4 x 50 @ 1:00, drill/swim
    4 x 100 pull @ 1:30, used buoy + paddles
    300 kick (used fins + board)

    main 1, 4 rounds:
    4 x 25, done:
    --3 @ :20
    --1 @ 1:00

    300 kick, used fins + board

    main 2, 2 rounds, w/fins:
    4 x 50, done:
    --2 @ :40
    --2 @ 1:00

    200 kick, used fins + board

    200 w/d

    TTL: 3100 yards

    I really felt quite crappy when I first got in the water. sore all over, legs/arms/shoulders. and to think I actually did warm-down after my swims on Saturday...

    my trip back turned into a hot (or cold I guess) mess. It was snowing when I left BU, and the T (while it was outside) went through some intense squalls. It was still snowing when I got to Logan, but they said we'd go.
    we did go, left the gate on-time. but then waited forever to de-ice, took off about an hour later. got into Charlotte about the same time as my CLT-PHX leg was supposed to leave. I ran to the gate (nearly knocked over a few people, their fault for standing in the middle of the moving sidewalk), only to find out the door was closed, yet the plane was still there (quite frustrating).
    while waiting in line for customer service, I called. was initially put on a 1pm nonstop CLT-PHX yesterday. but when I got up to the counter, they talked me into a CLT-DFW, DFW-PHX option. Only I hadn't thought it through...I got into DFW at midnight (then had to deal with lost baggage), and left DFW on a 6am flight. I did get a hotel, at a nasty Doubletree in Irving, and slept for about 2 hours. I have no idea who in their right mind would fly on a 6am flight on a Sunday, but it was pretty full (although up in First there were a few empties). and it was nearly as cold in Texas as it had been in Boston.
    At least I got home early, had a surprise that the tree was all setup
    Holly (the dog) was very happy to see me too!
    And my bag was delivered last night.
  7. Saturday 08042012: Arizona Masters LC State Championships

    by , August 4th, 2012 at 06:45 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    although I got to sleep an hour later than normal, it seemed way too early when my alarm clock went off at 5:30 today.

    then I couldn't find any bread to make my usual pre-meet/pre-race PB&J (I do it before every meet, marathon, bike event, etc). so I found an egg/turkey sausage sandwich in the freezer and nuked that instead.
    I gathered together way too much stuff, and headed out the door at 6:40.

    arrived at Kino just in time for warm-ups at 7am.

    500 nice and easy
    5 x 100 @ 10ish sec rest
    3 x 100, 50 breast/50 free @ 10ish rest
    200 easy

    right as I finished that, they opened a warm-up lane for starts:
    2 x 100, start off block, fast for ~20ish meters, then easy to the bulkhead, easy back in the next lane

    since I was in the 3rd heat of the 1500, I did an extra 200 yards during heat 2, just to get wet, cool off, and keep a little fresh

    Event 1: 1500m free
    Seed time: 22:10
    Last year: 22:08.96
    Today's result: 21:46

    Initially I was seeded in lane 7, with Lacey (who I swim with) in lane 2. I asked the meet organizer about a change, she called over the gal from lane 6 who agreed it, so we switched.
    so I was between Lacey (lane 7), who seeded around 22:30 and a gal who was seeded around 20:00, with Kurt Dickson on the other side.
    I'm always a bit conservative on my start for this, maybe even pausing on the start to make sure I don't DQ.
    I was glad I switched, I had someone to swim with for a good ~800, before either I took off and/or she fell back a bit.
    And I know I'm not supposed to look or care, but Kurt only lapped me twice. not only that, but the guy in lane 8 was a total sandbagger, seeded around 26, finished in under 20. I noticed him lapping me at some point (I think around 1100) and I pushed things up a bit.

    Overall, I'm extremely happy with that time. The water was warm, the air was warm, the sun was being its usual PHX self... this is 22 sec off of last year's, which I thought was fantastic.
    So I was having a blond moment when I finished. Lacey was exactly a minute behind me, and I saw 22:46 on the scoreboard, just assumed it was mine. I swam the 100 free and 100 breast, then was relaxing before the 400, chatting with Lacey, when I told her I was a bit disappointed. then she said, "no that was my time, yours must be way better." so I went to the results and checked again, and was so stoked when I did my 400.

    Event 2: 100m free
    seed time: 1:10
    last year: 1:08.72
    today's result: 1:11

    I had a whopping 15 min rest between the 1500 and my heat of the 100. I had enough time to grab my jammer from my bag, go to the locker room, squeeze into it, jumped in the warm-up pool for a quick 100 yards...
    that said, I had a strong first 50. I was in lane 8, kept ahead of lane 7 through around 60m, then he took off.
    this isn't horrible; yes last year was better. but the year before I did 1:12.

    Event 5: 100m Breaststroke
    seed time: 1:30
    last year: 1:29.43
    today's result: 1:31.71

    I had about 40 min after the 100 free, so had a little time to recover. but my body was really spent after that 1500. I did 300 yards in the warm-up pool in there, and ate a protein bar.
    my biggest fear was diving off the blocks and doing a bunch of dolphin kicks. so I kept telling myself, breaststroke, breaststroke...
    I was seeded in the middle of the pool, lane 5, but there were sandbaggers all around me.
    I held with the crowd through the 50, but then again I suffered on the back end. about the 80m mark I realized I wasn't getting that much from my I tried to really crank up the speed, which helped. I'll have to do more of that next time. I think I'm just used to holding a steady time for the 200 breast.

    Event 6: 400m Freestyle
    seed time: 5:45
    last swim (way back in 2002): 5:55
    today's result: 5:37

    I had another 20 min or so between events, got in a nice long 400 yards in the warm-up pool, drank plenty. I knew this was my last real event (not counting relays)

    I was in lane 7, the guy in lane 8 was seeded 6:00, and the gal in lane 6 5:30 (she finished closer to 5:15). but my real competition was a guy I usually swim with, who was way over in lane 1.
    I really just tried to hold a steady pace for the first 300. at that point, I was definitely feeling the warm water, and my 1500. I wasn't paying attention to those near me, they weren't that close. but after I turned at 350, I looked across the pool, to see that guy from workout (he had a black jammer with white stripes down the side, easy to spot). he gave me a good target to try to catch, I pushed and pushed that last 50...but came up short. he finished in 5:34. but he also only did the 100/400.

    got in a really nice 400 yards in the warm-up pool.

    Event 10: Men's Freestyle Relay

    I can't even remember the last time I had done relays at a meet, I think back when I did SCY nationals in 2003.
    anyway, throughout the morning I kept hearing from others, "I saw you're in a relay with me." I finally got to meet Jason Walters, we were on this relay together.
    so I was the leadoff, I think my time was a 33ish (was 34 by the time I looked at the clock).
    I got out, took off my goggles, and was standing on the bulkhead waiting. suddenly I noticed the #3 guy coming at me, with no one else there to go. a gal in the warm-up pool said, "I guess you're swimming 2 legs!" so I threw my goggles back on, jumped up on the block, and did the final 50 also (no idea on time, I'm sure it wasn't nearly as good). it was either that or get the guy who did #3 to do a 100... I did give the guy who spaced out and skipped a majorly hard time and told him he owes me.
    on the plus side, at least I didn't have to deal with walking on the hot deck without my shoes.
    (so another 100m)

    Event 11: Mixed Freestyle Relay

    I verified we had everyone we were supposed to for this relay
    again I was leadoff, but by this time my whole body was starting to shut down. I'd guess I'm lucky if I did a 36.

    I hung out down near the bulkhead, hoping the official would let us swim down a bit (this was the last)...and they did. So again I didn't have to deal with the hot deck and no shoes.

    got in a nice 250m w/d
    (so 300m)

    Totals for the day:
    1000 yards

    Overall, an interesting twist. maybe I should just give up on shorter stuff and focus on 400/800/1500, I seem to be better suited to those. but then I'd feel like I'm not getting my money's worth from the meet...
    and I think I've learned my lesson. if I ever do back-to-back events again, especially if one is the 1500, I'm copping out an NT seed to get some rest.

    I'm planning to ride in the morning, probably similar to what I did 2 weeks ago, maybe shorter (I did 64 miles then). then show up at Kino for the medley relays (Paul told me he's putting me on breast legs for both the men's and mixed).
  8. Saturday 12102011, NE Masters SCM meet

    by , December 10th, 2011 at 08:08 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    I had a pretty good flight PHX-BOS last night, got into BOS nearly on-time. Took the T out to my hotel, and got to bed somewhere around 12:30.
    woke up around 7 this morning, showered, had breakfast (I was craving eggs and there were some in the free breakfast). then made my way over to Boston University for the NE Masters SCM meet, via the T.
    on the way over, I got a text from fellow forumite rxleakem, wanting to take me up on the offer to sign him in for the 400 free.

    I don't remember when I last swam a SCM meet, around 2001 or 2002. I have some results in a spreadsheet at home, but the times are mostly meaningless now.

    all official results are located here:

    my results:

    anyway, I arrived at the BU Rec Center, which is simply quite amazing. I signed in for all of my events that I planned to do (the 400m free, 100m IM, and 200m breast). I had signed up for the 50 free/50 breast, but due to timing I wouldn't be able to do them. was early and just kind of milled around with the rest of the group waiting for the BU swim team to finish. then I thought I should take a picture of the pool... (having trouble getting it to work now).

    anyway, I changed and went in the main competition pool for warmup. it was supposed to be fast on one side to slow on the other, but as any big meet, it seemed a big CF, at least where I was at. I tried 3 different lanes, and I was stuck behind slower swimmers while someone was behind me tapping my foot. oh well...
    got in around 1500m w/u various, including 1 block start

    then I did my first event...400m Free
    time: 5:16.45
    before the race I chatted with the guy in the next lane. he said he was seeded around 5:25, but then gave all kinds of excuses as to why he'd be slow. I figured I'd try to keep up and see what happened.
    had a really good dive (in my Yingfa suit), and mostly just paced off of lane 2. evidently he, lane 3, and I (in lane 1) were together most of the race.
    I really don't remember much...but my splits show a nice bell curve with a neg split, so I guess I swam it ok. maybe go out more up front, but I had no idea if/how I'd hang on.

    did ~300 yards in the diving well (a total mosh pit)

    after that, at long last, I finally ran into Leslie and Rich. I took a picture of the 3 of us with Leslie's phone (which she hadn't yet lost or had stolen)...!/FortLivingston...807427/photo/1

    I debated doing the 100IM, but figured since I've never ever done fly ever at a meet (can I stress that enough?), and rarely even do it in workout, what the heck?
    time: 1:21.48
    based on that split, again I guess I did it ok?
    I had one of my best dives ever, did a solid 7-8 dolphin kicks, surfaced, and managed about 7 strokes of fly...and actually felt great for that whole 25.
    I guess my back pushoff was ok, I'm far from an expert at that. somewhere around 1/2 way down I was realizing that I didn't do any back during w/u and had no idea how many strokes I'd need to do after the flags. I saw the flags, did about 2-3, then flipped over...and coasted for a while to the wall.
    next to free, breast is my best stroke, and I felt comfortable with this.
    by the time I got to free, I pushed whatever I had left.
    so the 100 IM really isn't so bad. just a little of each stroke, not enough to even be painful, yet now I can say I swam some fly in a meet
    I actually felt more spent after the IM than the 400 though.

    I did another ~300 yards in the diving well after that.

    since it was a while before my next event, I did a ~300 w/u before it. Leslie said to do some fast hands breast, so I did, and I managed to do a fast turn too.

    finally my last event...200 breast.
    time: 3:05.61
    I did a 200 LCM breast at the Mesa-Skyline meet in July and finished around 3:17 I think. but that was after a 1500, 100 free, 50 free, 50 breast.
    my goal for this was 3:10, and I was shocked I was so much faster.
    evidently I took that first 50 way too fast. by the 150m mark I so wanted this to be done. I'm kind of surprised my last 50 was as fast as it was.
    Rich (aka SwimStud) was in the same heat, but I was in lane 10 (wall) and he was in lane 3. we did the reverse gridge leading up to it...each of us giving all the reasons why we wouldn't swim fast. but in the end I beat him--by ~3 sec

    then I got in another ~300 w/d in the diving well before heading out.

    overall, this was a great meet, extremely well-run (they made event check-in announcements, event announcements, etc very clearly). there was a swag shop (was tempted to get a suit, $18 but they had a whopping 5 suits in my size). there were also snacks. plus the location is great, there's a T stop right across the street.

    It would be nice to do more of this meet, maybe stay over.

    along with Leslie and Rich, I met Mike (who I checked into the 400 free) and Sue, other local swimmers who are on the USMS forums

    and now I can also say I tripled the number of meets that I did this year -v- last year
  9. 2011 East Valley Summer Invite LCM USMS meet

    by , July 9th, 2011 at 06:02 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    I was just reviewing a similar meet from last year:

    A couple of surprises, a few meh events, but overall a good meet for me. Heck, I think anytime I get a PB alone should make a good meet.

    This year's meet was about a month later, and at Skyline Aquatics Center -v- Kino last year (I think both pools are equally good).

    My lineup this year was a little different, with 1 new event, and 1 event I hadn't swum since 2002.

    Ended up taking Holly (the dog) for a little walk before I left home, about a mile, and I left a little later than I hoped. Still arrived at the pool around 7:20, with plenty of time to warm-up--

    (wore my usual brief/drag suit combo)
    600 gradual build
    4 x 50, pace 25s/easy 25
    200 easy

    my 1st event, 1500 free
    seed time: 23:45
    prior swims: never
    today's time: 22:08.96
    Initially I was a little pissed that they moved around the heats; a gal I swim with was supposed to be in the lane next to me which would have been a nice little race. they moved her and someone else to the 3rd heat. so I was the fastest in my heat. I chatted with some others ahead of time, most just wanted to finish.
    I don't have splits yet, but I know I took the first 100 a little faster than I should have, then settled into a decent pace, trying to hold a 1:30/100. I had a good view of the scoreboard, and looked about every 200.
    Mostly just hung on, then around 1200 I started to wake up. By the time I heard the bell, I really pushed things, and some people told me my last 100 was similar to my first.
    I didn't have a set counter; one of the coaches said she'd count for me. But at some point one of her kids took over, and they forgot to change the number. I saw 13 twice, so I just added 2 to what that was showing. Not a huge deal, just kept me awake.
    Before this, I also changed into my Speedo Fastskin brief. I've worn this before, but not in the water today. When I first dove in, I felt like I had lost 10#...which could have contributed to going out a little fast.

    did a 300 w/d immediately after that.

    before I warmed up again, I went in the locker room to squeeze into my newly purchased Yingfa jammer. it arrived on Thursday; I had tried it on at home, but this was the first time it had seen water.

    then did a 300 w/u before my next event.

    my 2nd event: 100 free
    seed time: 1:12
    past times: 1999 1:15, 2002 1:16, 2010 1:12
    today's time: 1:08.72
    Diving in wearing the Yingfa jammer I felt like I wasn't wearing anything at all. my legs felt so light, and it held my butt really high in the water. I went through a little of that in the warm-up, but going off a block was surreal.
    had a really good race with the guy next to me, he's another ASU to Mesa convert. he said he paced me for the first 50, then I tried to catch him at the end; he finished a second ahead.
    I think I only took 5 dolphin kicks off of the dive. sometimes I've taken 6-8, and I think that's just too many for me. this seemed to work better.
    that said, I don't really know how it is possible do drop 4 seconds in a 100 over a year. yea, the suit probably gave me a second, but 3 more? that's insane.

    did another 300 w/d after the 100.

    my 3rd event: 50 free
    seed time: :33
    past times: 1999 :34.01, 2002 :34.66, 2011 :33
    today's time: :32.23
    had a decent dive, did my 5 dolphin kicks, but just didn't feel snappy at all in this. I was in an end lane, felt like I could have gotten some backwash. really tried to catch the gal in the next lane, but it just never happened.
    I should probably just give up on this event, but for some reason I don't.

    did a 250 w/d after the 50 free.

    my 4th event: 50 breast
    seed time: :43
    past times: 1999 :41.82, 2002 :40.55, 2010 :41
    today's time: :42.11
    after last year, I kept telling myself before it, "breaststroke, breaststroke, breaststroke..." Patrick was in the next lane and he probably thought I was crazy.
    I shouldn't have, but I looked over at Patrick a few times. He really didn't take off until halfway, and I kept holding back, thinking I was going too fast. I just felt very sluggish, and definitely not the pace I needed for a 50.
    actually worse than last year, but with the extra dolphin kicks last year, that could have been an edge (tho doing an easy pace I really expected faster).
    oh well, win some/lose some. considering how much breast I've done recently, especially given my recent ankle stuff, this was decent.

    did an easy 200 after the 50 breast.

    and then did an easy/build 300, with a couple 25 pace breast legs, before the 200 breast.

    my 5th event: 200 breast
    seed time: 3:17
    past times: in 2002 3:13.81
    time today: 3:17.59
    I was definitely tired by this point, and was 80% into scratching. but somehow I thought I'd just see how I'd do. I haven't been training breast much lately, and the 200 clearly shows this, especially -v- 2002 when I was doing a fair amount (at Ron Johnson's urging).
    only 4 people showed up for this, but 3 of us were in lanes 6-7-8, so we had a little race going. I just tried to go out very slow, and really didn't push until the 100 point. the gal in lane 8 seeded at 3:30, had done the mile and 400 IM before this, but she still managed a 3:12. I kinda saw her glide by me, and I picked up my pace a little, but didn't get too speedy until the last 50.
    my ankle still felt kinda funky, I wouldn't have felt guilty skipping this, but I'm glad I did. I really should do more breast in workout.

    then did a 400 w/d before packing up and heading out.

    TTL distance: 4850m

    overall it was a great meet. as a gal who I used to swim at ASU with said, "it is like a workout with timers." very fast moving, and if you weren't watching, you could have easily missed an event.
    I almost wished I had just done the 1500 then the 100 free, and left on a high note. that said, I'm glad I got in the others, for practice if nothing else. doing the 1500 just zaps energy for later in the meet.

    hoping to run tomorrow morning, and still toying with the open water at Canyon Lake.

    Updated July 9th, 2011 at 11:37 PM by aztimm

    Masters Swim Meets / Events
  10. Sunday 04032011, AM Long Run & afternoon 'mini meet'

    by , April 3rd, 2011 at 05:15 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    didn't have nearly the soreness I expected when i woke up this morning. but this shouldn't be confused with that I had none either. I really worked my body over on Friday, quite insane to do that much on a normal day. the worst were my biceps, and my abs were also a little sore. I'm sure my chest, back, triceps were too, but those two pretty much outshone everything else.

    so I got out a little earlier for my long run--
    Time: 01:59:49
    Distance: 14.10 mi
    Elevation Gain: 14 ft
    Calories: 1,882 C
    Avg Pace: 08:29 min/mi
    Avg Moving Pace: 08:24 min/mi

    here's what I wrote in my dailymile update--
    Got out early today to try to beat the heat...partially successful. Already in the mid-70s when I started, and quite dry and windy. Took Holly the dog with me for a whopping 6.8 miles, here longest in months, and she held up really well. Dropped her off, and did some more on my own. My goal today was a long-slow-distance, with a soft goal of holding an 8:30 pace, and mostly made both (wanted to do 15...). Splits: 8:22, 8:27, 8:41, 8:35, 8:30, 8:30, 8:24, 8:40, 8:35, 8:39, 8:30, 8:28, 8:32, 8:05, 7:13.

    after briefly relaxing at home, we went out for breakfast to The Good Egg, and I got my usual, the Macho Nacho. Got back home and I decided to venture back out...

    late last night, I did some rough calculations with the heat sheets for the SW Zone SCY Meet @ Mesa-Kino, and I figured that if everything ran exactly on schedule, my 100 free would be around 11 AM. I had given up on the 500 free and 200 breast, and I really just entered the 50 back for kicks.

    I arrived at Kino just as the Women's heats of the 100 free were starting. I had put on my Speedo Fastskin brief under my shorts before I left home. Found a place to plop my bag, and jumped in the warm-up pool--

    300 mostly easy free (the water was a bit chilly so I'm glad I got the chance to do anything)

    then had just a couple of minutes before my 100 free. as I was waiting behind the block, Lacy saw me and asked what my goal was. I said, "to not vomit or cramp up." She replied with a grin, "oh good, I'll take pictures." thankfully it wasn't that horrible (but I haven't yet seen the pictures either)...
    1:00.33 (so very very close, but still a PB)

    went back to the warm-up area--
    200 easy free
    100 easy breast

    then wandered around and chatted for a few minutes while the 200 fly was going on. there was 1 heat for women, then 2 for men. found a bunch of people from the Mesa team, Sun Devil Masters (even went over and chatted with Jonny and Simon), then did the final round at the PHX Swim club tent. Laura spotted me, she said, "I didn't see you at warm-up." I said, "yea, I got here just before the 100 free." She just smiled at me.

    went back to the warm-up area (I think around 400 ttl)--
    100 easy free
    50 easy breast
    200 done 25 breast/25 free
    50 easy, mostly just floating

    then got out for my other event, 50 breast. again, not as horrible as I expected (and possibly a PB, I'll have to check)--

    then again went back to the warm-up area (I think another 400)
    100 easy free
    200 mix of free/breast
    100 cool-down

    TTL swimming for the day, about 1550 yards.

    then as I was walking to the locker room, I ran into Michelle Chow (chowmi on the forums). I told her, "Q told me if I saw you I had to say Hello." I think she was a bit taken aback. she asked how I did and I said, "not bad, considering I ran 14 this morning." I'm not quite certain, but I think she rolled her eyes at me (if not outright I'm sure she did inside). She probably thought I was crazy.

    I was at Kino for all of an hour and 10 minutes, and that included having to wait a couple minutes for an open shower (they have a whopping 3 showers in the men's locker room). left home around 10:45 and was back home by 12:30.

    lesson for next meet--don't get frustrated with whatever life throws at me as the meet approaches. and certainly don't do crazy lifting 2 days before. and probably a good idea not to do a long run that morning either, although things weren't as bad as they could have been. oh, and probably do a half decent job on the meet-day diet too.

    edited--added running playlist.

    Updated April 3rd, 2011 at 07:47 PM by aztimm

    Running , Masters Swim Meets / Events
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  11. Saturday 06/05/2010: East Valley Summer Invite Meet

    by , June 5th, 2010 at 06:47 PM (aztimm's training blog)
    I did make it out for my team's East Valley Summer Invite Meet today.

    Arrived at the pool somewhere around 7:15, and it was fairly dead. water was a bit on the warm side, Paul said 80, but I'd say closer to 82. I warmed up in my usual training brief and drag suit. after verifying (and showing Laura) that my old Fastskin brief was ok to wear, I changed and wore that for all my events. After I got settled, I got in for the following (LCM)--

    700 gradual build
    8 x 50 @ 1:00, goal to hold :45 on each (wasn't a problem)
    100 easy

    while the 1500 was going on (I may like distance, but that just seems extreme), I got in a nice 400 to warm myself back up.

    due to both some computer problems and a freeway closure, they delayed the start of the meet a bit. maybe 20-30 min I'd guess. I took my watch off before I got in the water and didn't put it back on until I left.

    all of my seed times were pretty much pulled out of the air. I used some practice times, but purposely didn't even look at my prior times since they are so old.

    the entire MAC coaching staff was on-deck in some capacity. Paul and Laura running around making sure things were as they should be, and they both swam a few events. Sheila was officiating. Laurel sat in the bleachers mid-pool, cheered people on, and got all splits (even for 50s!). Jon was there, helping Laurel and guiding with any questions.

    my 1st event, 800 free
    seed time: 12:40
    I've swam this event at meets twice that I know of, in 1999 (final time was 12:15), and 2002 (final time was 12:12).
    today's time: 11:31
    thoughts: while my seed time was based on a 1:35 base, I secretly hoped I could do a 1:30 base. the idea to do the 50s holding 45 was a great one, and I'll keep that for the future. Just before I started, Lindsay told me to break it into 4 x 200s...settle into the first, mostly easy on the second, build the third, and fast on the last. I mostly tried to do that. Just a few weeks ago in workout, I tried to hold a 1:30 base for a 600 but was just over, so I'm very happy with this time.
    Thanks to Patrick for counting for me! Hopefully I didn't splash him too bad.

    after the 800, I went back to the warm-up lane, got in a nice easy 200. then I thought I should warm-up my breast a little for my 100. initially there was supposed to be a 30 min break between the last heat of the 800 (mine) and the next event, 100 breast, but due to the late start that went down to 10 min. so I got maybe 20 min rest.

    my 2nd event: 100 breast
    seed time: 1:36
    past times: in 1999 1:33, in 2002 1:29
    time today: 1:29
    thoughts: I've done little to no breast training, but for some reason I've done much in the past and have a good base. I'm happy I at least matched my past time, and I know I can go faster if I actually swim it once in a while.
    I had no one even near me, which didn't help too much. Laurel said my splits were around :41 and :47, so I have something to work on.

    I did about 200 easy and had about 20 min again until my next event. I did stop at the bulkhead to watch some of the fast guys swim the next heat of the 100 breast...good stuff. Jeff Commings looks like he doesn't even have to try. And Patrick did around 1:21. Had I put in a more accurate time, I think I would have been seeded with them.

    my 3rd event: 100 free
    seed time: 1:18
    past times: 1999 1:15, 2002 1:16
    today's time: 1:12
    thoughts: just before my heat, Laura ran by and asked how I'd do. I said 1:15, and she said she expected a 1:13. This is something I've worked a little on, so I'm happy that I improved over the years, and I think I can drop another 1-2 sec with some form improvements. I probably took too many dolphin kicks off the blocks (I'd guess 9 or 10). But again, I was seeded in a slower group, no one near me, so I was out on my own.

    my shoulders were starting to get a little tight after the 100, so I think I did at least 400 meters easy swimming, threw in a little breast. I did watch some of the fast people swim in the last heat of the 100. had a longer break, maybe 30 min before my next event.

    my 4th event: 50 breast
    seed time: :43
    past times: 1999 :41.82, 2002 :40.55
    today's time: :41 (don't have the exact time)
    thoughts: I should have been DQ'd. I went off the block (very high with blocks on the bulkhead), did a nice deep dive, followed by at least 3 dolphin kicks before I realized what I had done. rather than push things too much, I just kind of did a relaxed stroke down to the other end, expecting an official with a DQ slip. But that didn't happen. I got very far out ahead of the crowd, could have been through poor seeding, or those dolphin kicks, I didn't see a soul near me.
    Later on in the meet, Laura Winslow (Patrick's coach) told me that I just wasn't pacing this for a 50, I was doing a 100 or even 200 pace. Then I told her why, and she agreed.
    If I have a brain and don't screw this up, I think I could easily do this in :38, especially if I do more breast training.

    got in 200 after the breast, relaxed a bit on deck, had maybe 20 min before my last event.

    my 5th event: 50 free
    seed time: :33
    past times: 1999 :34.01, 2002 :34.66
    today's time: :33 (again don't have exact)
    thoughts: this time I did take the deep dive, then around 10 dolphin kicks. Probably too many. and I wasn't first, it was annoying that the gal in the lane next to me was just a hair ahead. push as much as I could I just couldn't catch her, but she did make a great rabbit to try to catch. I was tired, sore, and pretty much just fried.

    went over to the warm-up lane and did a nice easy 400. I did throw in a little breast (maybe 100 total), but mostly just wanted to get my free relaxed, and my shoulders relaxed.

    total distance swam (for my GTD): 4100m

    General thoughts--
    * Paul and Laura put together a great event! I registered very spur of the moment and very late, but they were very flexible with everything. Funny story, one of the reasons I decided to finally do another meet was all the discussion about tech suits, and how some people felt I wasn't qualified to give an opinion since I didn't race (one person posted a link to this event). Well now that doesn't apply.
    * Turnout wasn't as big as what I remember at past meets, but those were the official 'state' meets, this seemed more like a team meet. Sure we had some Sun Devil Masters there, Phoenix Swim Club, a couple people from Tucson, and the odd visitors, but I'd guess 75% of the people who swam were from my team.
    * We also had a great turnout of officials, timers, and other volunteers. I was so surprised to see so many people I swim with.
    * As for my swimming, I guess I did as expected. I'm not a sprinter, and shouldn't even fake it. The limit was 5 events, and Laura told me it would be short (I didn't realize so short, all of my events took place in 3 hours). I did consider some 200s and even the 400 free, but with such a short time, after an 800...I decided against it.
    * I really need to work more on my breast. Before I started with masters groups, I wasn't too comfortable swimming free and would swim on my own whole sets of breast. One summer in college, a lifeguard refined all my strokes, and she really cleaned up my breast. After I started masters, I'd do it once in a while, but it is just so easy to do free when intervals are tight. With getting back into running, my legs sometimes just can't handle breast. But I have a good base, and did decent in it. I could fake a 50, even a 100...but a 200 requires training, and I didn't feel ready for that yet. But a 200 breast is my best shot of reaching an NQT, so it is something I need to work on.
    * Now Paul wants me to do more meets, of course. The Phoenix Swim Club is holding a 'state' meet in about a month. This is a 3-day setup, with distance events Friday night, and other things Sat-Sun. Ideally, I'd like to do the 800 (or even 1500) on Friday, and do 1 day of the meet where I'd get in a 200 breast (if I'm ready), and some other stuff. We'll see how that fits into my schedule.

    Overall, it was a great experience. Just a few hours, I was home by 12:30. And it was nice to meet Patrick, see others who I hadn't seen for a long time, and it was just a generally fun experience. If nothing else, I will do some of these team meets periodically. Weather wasn't too bad, it was about 100 when I left.

    Ideally, I'm hoping to get out for a run tomorrow morning. Nowhere near the 15 miles I did last week, but 12 would be nice, but I'd settle for even 10. Our temps are getting up there (high near 110 tomorrow), so it will be an early start.