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Pete's swim blog

2016 Auburn SCY Meet

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by , February 15th, 2016 at 04:55 PM (6061 Views)
It's been a while since I've written anything. Not much new other than I'm slightly more overweight and my conversion to a more core/kick driven freestyle has been very slow. In fact, I avoided freestyle events as much as possible this meet which did well for my point standings but was ultimately my undoing in the 200 IM. The meet itself was the usual top notch job by Conner and his awesome crew at Auburn. I met some new swimmers in my age group this year. Sadly, it was more towards the end of the meet and I didn't get to know them more. Met some swimmers I only see at Auburn and generally had a good time with whomever was hanging around us.

I signed up pretty late for this meet not knowing what I would swim. Like I said, my freestyle isn't working for me and my conditioning didn't have me feeling like any long stuff. That eliminated the 1650 and 500 free. I probably should have done the 200 fly but it came right after the 100 IM. The 100 IM is the first masters swim I did several years ago. I haven't swum it since and decided this was the year I would try it again. We swim a lot of IM so I added the 200 and 400 as well. I added the breaststroke events since I tend to do ok in those. For fun I added the 200 backstroke and just to bang my head against the wall one more time I decided to swim the 200 free.

For the first time I can remember, I wasn't hurt or sick for this meet. I stretched a lot and stayed on ibuprofen to ward off any back problems. So, overall, I felt pretty good. Here's how things went:

100 IM (Seed 1:09.51 / Time 1:06.69 [32.66, 34.03] - 4th place)
A positive split IM! This is about what I expected except the positive split. I struggled though a 1:12 from a dive during taper so I was glad to drop some time. I think the positive split is mostly because my fly and back are improving a lot while my breast is staying the same and my free is suffering. If my freestyle were on, I think I could easily be 1:05ish. But with swimmers in my age group going under 1:00, I'm not sure I'll compete well in 100 IM for a while.

100 BR (Seed 1:13.63 / Time 1:11.45 [34.38, 37.07] - 1st place)
Not my best but better than last year. Great dive and really good 50 split. Never really got too tired. I was in lane 8 and was well matched with the swimmer in lane 7. He beat me through 50 but my longer strokes made up the difference in the end.

200 FR (Seed 2:04.61 / Time 2:09.21 [29.83, 32.24, 33.18, 33.96] - 1st place)
This was mostly a complete disaster. The issue was simply not being prepared to swim in the competition pool. I warmed up with too much IM and didn't pay attention to any of the markings on the bottom of the pool. The setup had us swimming between two bulkheads. As you approach the turn end, there is a line across each lane for 25m markings. That mark MUST be ignored. The actual turn cue follows that one about 10 feet later. On the first 50, I noticed something was very wrong when I hit the first marking. My eyes said it is time to turn but by body said "not yet". I picked up my head to take a peek and realized my body was correct. No big deal except that I knew something was very wrong but I couldn't place my finger on it. On the next 50, my eyes won out. As I took my last pull and began to initiate my turn, I took a quick peek and noticed the wall was still a good 10 feet away. Somehow I managed another arm pull which got me near enough the wall for a turn. But now I'm in panic mode and I still haven't fully grasped why the markings are so terribly wrong. About half way back to the start end, I figured out the problem and would just take another 2 strokes after I saw the marking. That would have worked great at the turn end but my adjustment was a disaster at the start end. I'm lucky I didn't crash into the bulkhead and just ended up with a jammed turn. By the last 50, I had it all sorted out but I was tired, defeated and frustrated. That's when I remembered that this was the reason I decided to do the 1650 4 years ago. It wasn't that I thought I'd be good at the 1650... I was just wanting to learn the peculiarities of the pool before I swam anything competitive.

400 IM (Seed 4:59.20 / Time 5:03.76 [33.28, 36.67,41.57, 39.98, 42.00, 41.01, 35.15, 34.10] 1st place)
I was pretty happy with this swim. My main goal was to stay with my teammate Roger in lane 4 as long a possible. I ended up stretching the fly out a bit too much and being a great backstroker, he was gone by the time I got to breaststroke. I was tired and probably not in the best shape for this. But my split was pretty even and I was quicker than last year. Would love to work my way below 5:00 again someday.

200 Breast (Seed 2:33.97 / Time 2:34.33 [35.94, 39.75, 39.49, 39.15] 1st place).
Pretty much the same performance I've given over the last 3 years. Not sure I could split this any better. I love the first 50 of this race and hate the last 50.

200 Back (Seed 2:38.08 / Time 2:35.93 [39.30, 39.52, 39.19, 37.92] 1st place).
This was my slack-off race and one real shot to set a personal best (meaning beating the 2:38 slack-off time from last year). I was mostly looking to keep it relaxed, long and efficient saving my energy for the 50 br coming up. As it turned out, I didn't do too bad. And the 37.92 for the last 50 was a twinge of effort for the finish.

50 BR (Seed 32.16 / Time 33.59 1st place).
Roger said this was an ideal first 50 for a 200 br. He is right. I stayed underwater way too long and stretched out my strokes for the first 25 too much.

200 IM (Seed 2:24.30 / Time 2:22.12 [29.63, 40.05, 39.71, 32.73] 3rd place).
As it turns out, the 200 back wasn't my only realistic shot at a personal best. This was about 3/4 second faster than my best 2 years ago. It was by far the most fun swim of the meet. Before the event, I met Chris on deck who swims in my age group. Turns out he was in lane 5 next to me in lane 6. It is kind of rare that I get to swim next to someone about my speed in my age group. Chris is a great competitor and neither of us were willing to let the other win this race. My experience with 200 IM is that everyone is either a sandbagger or they go hard on the fly and cruise the rest. Either way, if I do a conservative 50 fly, I end up in wake and risk drinking water. Not today! I went out fast and decided to deal with the consequences later. Tired is better than tired and lungs full of water. I ended up putting a half second on Chris after the fly. He gained 3 seconds on the backstroke which I promptly took back on the breaststroke. With 50 to go, I had a half second lead but ran out of gas at the end. I hate losing but without Chris, I doubt I could have pushed myself that much.

That was pretty much it. Had a great time as usual. Look forward to next year. Nationals is driving distance away this year. I'm thinking about it but still on the fence.

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  1. flystorms's Avatar
    Well it looks like you did really well! Nice work in lowering times!