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  1. March 21, 2012

    Warm-up (1000)
    200 swim
    2 X 100 @ 1:50, 75 catchup / 25 swim
    2 X 100 @ 1:45 DPS
    2 X 100 @ 1:40, 50 catchup / 50 swim
    2 X 100 @ 1:40 DPS

    Set I - Race pace 500s (2100 / 3100)
    5 x 100 @ 1:50 (BASE + :20), try for 1:18 (target pace + :04), went 1:13 - 1:16
    4 x 50 @ :45, :50, :55, :60 active recovery

    4 x 125 @ 2:15, try for 1:35 (target pace + :02), went 1:32 - 1:35
    4 x 50 @ :45, :50, :55, :60 active recovery

    2 x 250 @ 4:30, try for 3:05 (target pace), went 3:07 & 3:05
    4 x 50 @ :45, :50, :55, :60 active recovery

    Set II - Kick (400 / 3500)
    4 x 100 @ 1:40, kick with fins, dolphin/flutter by 25s

    Wrap-up (500 / 4000)
    12 x 25 @ :35 no-breather
    200 easy

    * 4000 *


    I signed up for next week's Pacific Masters Short Course Championships. I will be swimming the 100, 200, and 500 free, the 50 and 100 breast, and the 100 IM. Those of you who read about my first Master's meet last week may remember that using workout times as seed times didn't work out so well, so this time I tried come up with times that I hope I can do by extrapolating from workout times.

    I haven't actually done many 500s in practice so I didn't have anything to base my seed on, but on a good day I can do a small number of 100s on 1:20 so I picked 6:20 (1:16 per 100). Thinking this through reminded me of the Monster Quality Broken 500s set in this week's [ame=""]High Volume Workouts[/ame]. When I was planning today's workout I realized that I wouldn't have enough time to do 5,100 yards, so I went back to pwb's earlier [ame=""]Fun with 500s[/ame] and based the main set on that.

    As I was calculating the intervals and target times for the set I second guessed my 500 seed time and decided that I should shoot for a 6:10 instead of 6:20. I mostly made the target times, if the first ones were a bit fast, but with that much rest I should hope so.

    We'll see soon enough
    Swim Workouts
  2. Comes a flock of Albatrossians!

    by , March 21st, 2012 at 04:09 PM (Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton)

    Please pour yourself a favorite beverage, be this a goblet of Chardonnay or a punch made from dark roast espresso and Everclear, sit down upon your favorite couch with your iPad 3, other tablet device, or laptop computer, and commit to a good old-fashioned Dickensian style
    meet report that will leave you both inspired and smarter!

    Last Friday, March 16th, I drove down to the Middle Atlantic Compound that I co-own with Leslie Livingston and her family (don't ask: the intricacies of squatters rights real estate law are well beyond the scope of this report, though I will refer interested parties to the Office of Circumlocution for more info). The ride was uneventful; not so the repast of flank steak and asparagus and polenta that greeted my arrival, nor the first two episodes of the show, Shameless, that Leslie and I watched until our respective hypnotics knocked us into our respective rooms to sleep in our respective states of drugged babyhood.

    The next morning, Leslie made one of her smoothies, which include various berries, spinach leaves, aged contents from supplement bottles, potions, lawn waste, unguents, and a few tinctures that I think may have gotten women into trouble in Salem, Massachusetts in yesteryear, though thankfully that is well past us.

    We made our way to the Albatross meet with our respective goals in mind: Leslie to beat her own World and/or National Records in the 50 Fly and 100 Back, and to do similarly well in the 50 Free (she accomplished the first; half accomplished the second; and scratched the third--for more, I recommend reading her excellent blog.)

    My goals were at once more modest and more daring, given our respective reservoirs of swimming talent.

    I wanted to:

    1. Set the new Albatross record in the 200 freestyle
    2. Set the new Albatross record in the 400 freestyle
    3. Do well enough in the 100 to make it into the Top 10 in my new age group
    4. Possibly do well enough in the 50 to do similarly
    5. Contribute to three relays with my 1776 teammates, Dale Keith, Geoff Meyer, and Paul Trevisan, the four of us adding up to exactly 240 years of collective elderliness, thus qualifying to swim in the 240-279 relay category.
    6. Finally, preserve my Albatrossian record (set last year when I was in the 55-59 age group) in the 200 SCM freestyle, though I realized this was no longer in my control. The great Brad Gandee has signed up to swim this, and though his seed time was slower than my record, I suspected that he may well have sandbagged...

    I shall record the various races in the order they took place, with commentary to follow each one.

    100 SCM Freestyle

    Age Group 60-64 - Male

    Paul Trevisan 57.61

    James Thornton 1:00.14

    I came in second to my 1776 teammate, Paul Trevisan, a sensational sprinter who has set a number of World Records in the past and was hoping to break the 100 and 50 records here, too, despite the absence of a tech suit. Paul came close but didn't quite make it.

    What proved somewhat encouraging to me, if not Paul, is that two of us in the 60-64 age group beat most of the other swimmers at the meet in the 100 free.

    The next oldest swimmer who beat me (but not Paul) was Darek Sady in the 35-39 age group--Darek swam a 58.00.

    Two guys in the 25-29 age group beat us both: Bryan Rivera, with a 53.58; and Nick Kaufman-O'Reilly, with a 55.24.


    Sprinter Paul and Middle-Distance Jim clearly swim the 100 in different ways, beyond, that is, the fact that Paul swims it
    a lot faster!

    Check out the respective slopes of our splits:

    Paul's slope is reasonably steep here, indicative of the "leave nothing behind" philosophy of sprinting the whole race and trying not to die too badly by the end.

    The differential between Paul's 50s was 4.33 seconds. Would he have gone faster overall by saving a little on the front end? Who knows?

    My slope, on the other hand, is less steep, indicating a more controlled approach.

    My differential was 1.98 seconds. Would I have gone faster had I not coddled myself so much on the front half? Again, it's hard to know for certain, but several factors conspired to convince me to swim the race this way.

    First, it's worked for me in various other swims so far this season.

    Second, the difference between my "smooth EZ speed freestyle" stroke and my frenzied "all out sprinting freestyle" stroke is not huge, time-wise, but it is very significant energy-expenditure-wise.

    Third, unlike last year, where I signed up too late to swim the 400, I knew that at this year's Albatross I would be swimming the 200, 400, and three relays. Since I tend to do better, rankings wise, in the 200 and 400, I didn't want to use up too much on the 100.

    All the above notwithstanding, I was a bit disappointed when I looked up and saw that I'd failed to break a minute. At the 2011 Albatross meet, I swam .99 faster, turning in a 59.15, which proved good enough to earn me a tentative 6th place in the World that year--FINA TT rankings:

    My splits last year were 28.47 and 30.68, for a slightly higher differential of 2.21 seconds. One technical flaw this year might have accounted for a bit of the difference--I didn't see the final wall until I was right on top of it, and ended up taking an unnecessary final short stroke. Still, I doubt this made too much of a difference. The bottom line is that I probably tried harder in the 100 last year.

    200 SCM freestyle

    Fortunately for me, Paul Trevisan doesn't like to swim anything over a 100, which gave me a relative free pass in the 200.

    I came in fifth overall for this event, with the only four fellows who beat me (admittedly by substantial margins) were in the 40-44; 35-39; and 25-29 age groups.

    Age Group 60-64 - Male
    1776 James Thornton 2:12.59

    Age Group 40-44 - Male GERM Daniel Bellin 2:01.28

    Age Group 35-39 - Male
    GERM Frederik Hviid 2:00.53

    Age Group 25-29 - Male
    UNAT Bryan Rivera 1:56.99

    Age Group 25-29 - Male
    UNAT Sam Garner 2:08.94

    Despite losing to whippersnappers, I was happy with this swim.

    What was particularly gratifying when I looked up and saw my time was knowing it bested last year's 200, where I'd set the Albatross meet record of 2:13.04 in the 55-59 age group.

    Here are my splits for this year's 200:

    The difference between my first and second 100s was 2.53 seconds. Since the first 100 benefits from a dive, I feel I swam this race pretty evenly, which was my goal.

    Last year's 200 had the following splits (sorry I can't find a SwimPhone graph for last year's results):

    30.66, 33.17 (first 100 1:03.83)

    35.04, 34.17 (second 100 1:09.21)

    Difference between last year's 2 x100s:

    Maybe the reason I swam a faster 200 this year is because I saved up a bit on the individual 100 earlier in the day. But I think a more significant explanation is that I simply paced things better this year for my kind of swimming style.

    Could I have done a better time going out a bit faster this year? I am not sure, though I concede it's possible. But more and more, I am beginning to conclude that for my body type, stroke, and energy systems, an evenly balanced swim is the better bet than the "hold on and try not to die" approach.

    In any event, last year's 2:13.04 proved good enough to make the tentative Top 10 worldwide:

    Had I been FINA 60 last year, instead of turning it this year, my 2012 time would have actually been good enough to place No.1 in the world by nearly a second:

    Of course, this year isn't last year, so who knows what will happen.

    My time did set a new Albatross record in the 60-64 age group, plus in the heat after I swam, Brad Gandee ended up having to withdraw half way through the race because of cramps.

    Thus my 55-59 Albatross record in the 200 SCM still stands. Who cares about world placement when one can legitimately boast:
    Ich bein ein duble Albatrossian!

    Men 55-59 200 Free 2:13.04 3/19/2011 James Thornton 1776

    Mr. Roddin, please know that you can stamp Stetari by this 200 Free Albatrossian record for at least one more glorious year!

    400 SCM freestyle

    I signed up for the 50 free, but it was less than 15 minutes away from the 400. The meet, which had started at 3 p.m., was dragging on. Besides Leslie's a.m. smoothie, and a couple of scrambled eggs consumed before we set off from the Compound to the pool much earlier in the day, all I'd had to eat was some Gu Chomps and a banana. My stomach was beginning to roil. It was nearly 7:30 p.m. by the time my heat in the 400 SCM free was ready to be swum.

    I also knew that immediately following this heat, the last of the day, my 1776 teammates and I would be swimming 3 quick relays.

    Call me cowardly, but I decided that if there was ever a time to adopt the controlled pace strategy, this was it. After all, it had worked quite well for the 200, and when I swam that race earlier in the day, I actually felt energetic and good as opposed to shakey and nauseated.

    Anyhow, I came in third overall in the 400 SCM free with a time of 4:48.72.

    The fellows who beat me were:

    Age Group 45-49 - Male

    Jonathan Berry 4:39.19

    Age Group 30-34 - Male

    Jeff "Muppet" Strahota 4:48.06

    I actually spied Jeff on the final length, though I didn't know at the time it was him. I'd failed to secure a counter, and though I was 90 percent sure that I was swimming the last length, there was enough uncertainty about this in my mind that I didn't want to turn entirely to lead in case I had to finish with another 50.

    Nevertheless, I did my best to beat Jeff and almost succeeded.

    Here are our respective SwimPhone graphs:

    Muppet's graph above

    My graph above.

    A couple notes about our respective races:

    1. Jeff told me at the Social after the meet that he always likes to be the first one to touch on the very first 50 of distance races.
    2. His first 50 was 31.75; mine was 34.92. His first 50, in other words, beat me by 3.17 seconds.
    3. By the end of the whole 400, his time beat mine by .66 of a second.
    4. Jeff's last 50 was 35.90, and mine was 34.31, which means I beat him by 1.59 seconds here.
    5. Overall, our average 50s were extremely close: 36.01 for him; 36.09 for me, or 8 one-hundredths of a second for each of the 8 x 50s.
    6. Could I have perchance beaten Jeff if I'd exerted myself a wee bit more, particularly on 50 No. 1? I don't know. The thing about swimming fast at the beginning of a race, at least for me, is that it has a multiplier effect, sort of like the way a tiny millimeter off as a bullet leaves the barrel of a rifle can miss the target by a wide margin, particularly the further away such a target (or final wall) is.
    7. I do think I might have swum a better 400, especially if it had been the first event, not the last individual event of the day. My "meters to yards" conversion time worked out to a 5:28, pretty much the same as my best 500 of the year, albeit in a worse pool but swum first thing in the meet.
    8. Leslie told me she thought I looked "lackadaisical" on the first 50, I am think perhaps I could have gone slightly faster here. When control blossoms into a lackadaisy, is it really control anymore--or something else entirely?
    9. I think for me the ideal way to swim freestyle races 200+ and divisible by 4 is similar to the old school relay order: second fastest guy first, followed by slowest guy, then the third fastest, then the fastest guy as the anchor. Put more simply, grading the four quarters of the race would thus be: B D C A. The difference, of course, between one person doing a long swim and four people doing a relay is that the dive yields such an advantage that the individual race, ideally, should be swum A D C B. Even with the dive, I swam my 400 A D C B.
    10. Conclusion: I probably should swim first 100 a little bit faster, particularly first 50; and start descending a bit more aggressively on the third 100, all the while staying away from teetering over the lactate threshold.

    I didn't swim the 400 last year, but here are the FINA results for 2011's 60-64 age group:

    Who knows how my time will fare in this year's rankings? With luck, I may even get another chance to swim a SCM meet before the end of the year.

    But one thing looks certain: I can add the coveted Albatrossian title for a third time in an individual event!

    Mr. Roddin, sir! At the risk of sounding cruel, please do not dither too long before hiring the masonry artisan to rechisel into the granite tablets a replacement name for Mr's. Harmon and Morgan, former record holders in the 200 and 400 SCM freestyles, respectively!

    Sorry, fellows. There's a new old-bird Albatrossian who is taking over the roost!


    240-239 Year old SCM Relays

    For the infinitessimal numbers of you who are still reading this vlog (thanks, 61-year-old Jim Thornton and older versions of you! I am always happy to see you guys walking down Memory Lane here at our vlog!), I just found out that I have reached my limit of pictures for this blog (you are allowed to add no more than 10--who knew?)

    So let me just make relatively quick work of our relays, which, thanks to my wonderful teammates, earned each of us three more Albatrossian meet records (I am certain of this, though they don't keep records for relays in any spot that I can find.)

    Men 240-279 200 SC Meter Medley Relay


    USMS: N 2:01.03 12/5/2009 GOLD COAST G SCHMIDT, T SHEAD, J WOTTON, C CAVANAUGH Team Seed Finals Points ================================================== ============================= 1 Colonials 1776 'A' NT
    2:09.02 12

    1) Keith, Dale M58
    2) Dougherty, Steve M61 38.22
    3) Trevisan, Paul M61 30.36
    4) Thornton, James M60 27.87

    Five minutes later, we swam the 200 free relay. My teammates let me lead off so I could get an official time for the 50, which I had scratched because of it being right before the 400. My lead-off time isn't that great, but it would have snuck into the TT last year.

    Men 240-279 200 SC Meter Freestyle Relay


    USMS: N 1:49.69 10/17/2009 GOLD COAST J WOOTON, C CAVANAUGH, D QUIGGIN, C BURNS Team Seed Finals Points

    ================================================== =============================
    1 Colonials 1776 'A' NT 1:50.33 12

    1) Thornton, James M60
    2) Keith, Dale M58 28.19
    3) Meyer, Geoffrey M61 28.76
    4) Trevisan, Paul M61 25.16

    we missed the World Record by .64 seconds! Those fellows, moreover, swam their time in 2009 and thus almost certainly had the advantage of high tech body suits! We came so close! Who knows, perhaps we will have a chance to try it again, preferably when I haven't just swum a 400 and 50 within the previous 10 minutes!


    Men 240-279 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay


    ================================================== =============================
    1 Colonials 1776 A NT 4:13.35

    1) Keith, Dale M58 1:05.08
    2) Thornton, James M601:02.45
    3) Meyer, Geoffrey M611:04.93
    4) Trevisan, Paul M61 1:00.89

    We weren't that close to this World and/or National record, which is confusing.

    How can the world record be slower than the USMS record?

    Anyhow, the faster of these two times, 4:04.88, beats our end-of-the-meet, utter-exhaustion, be-jammered time by 8.47.

    If Paul and I had swum our individual 100 times from earlier in the day, we would have done a 1:57.75 (actually, probably a bit faster because one of us would have had a relay start). The other two swimmers would have had to swim a 2:07.13 to tie—if each swam exactly a 1:03.56, we’d have the new record!

    The point is that there are some new Albatrossians to deal with now in the 240-279 age group.

    Cover your french fries and your eyeballs alike. We are out to peck and pluck out anything we can to feed our insatiable hunger for more glory, and then take flight!

    [nomedia=""]Flying like a bird | part 14/14 - YouTube[/nomedia]

  3. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 AM Workout -03/22/12

    by , March 21st, 2012 at 02:09 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters GOLD Workout)
    We are three weeks out from Y Nationals and will start our taper/rest today.
    WARM UP:
    1 X 250 4:00 3:45
    1 X 150 2:30 2:15
    1 X 100 1:40 -
    Two rounds. Round 1 intervals left, 2 right.

    8 X 100 free 1:45
    Swim 1-7 @ 80/90% #8 @ 100%
    2 X 100 easy 2:00

    1 X 200 kick 4:15
    6 X 50 kick 1:00
    1 X 100 swim

    8 X 50 1:15
    Stroke, swim all at 80/90%
    IM'ers should swim two of each
    2 X 100 easy 2:00

    8 X 25
    odd: build to race finish
    even: blocks-sprint 20 yards/easy finish

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  4. Taper Day 3 - 03/21/12

    by , March 21st, 2012 at 01:46 PM (Workout Swimmer)
    Probably did too much this morning - it was long course, no ATAC practice due to Spring Break.

    600 back/free
    300 pull no paddles w/snorkle
    300 pull w/paddles & snorkle
    100 pull w/paddles (caught my last 2 100's time - and amazingly I was 5 secs faster w/out the snorkle - have suspected as much)
    400 kick, every other 100 w/out the board
    400 breast/free
    4 x 50 mod on 1:00
    4 x 200P on 3:15 - last two were broken, one at the 100, last one at the 50 for about 5 secs - Did these with Bill M - who is a complete lazy butt until the very last 200 of the entire workout - go figure. Beat him anyway.
    100 easy
    Total: 3200LCM

    Feeling pretty good in the water - trying to make sure I don't over do it & actually get some rest, but still maintain enough conditioning to have a decent 500 free on Sunday. Really looking forward to going out of town. Superboy & his dad (my hubbie) are both coming to watch -- woo hoo! Gotta try on my new Finis fast suit - haven't put it on yet & I've had it since Auburn Nat's! Sure hope I can get on the stupid thing.
  5. I'm done - hopefully

    by , March 21st, 2012 at 10:47 AM (Nobody Special)
    * Just saw my physical therapist today and she basically told me I am out of the woods concerning this spine/neck injury. Coulnd't have gotten better news. No surgery and I'm feeling good as I steadily and slowly continue to increase my yards.

    * I missed posting my last couple of work outs though Sunday's was fairly straight forward - four 500s and then 12 100s for 3200 yards.

    *Today's workout:

    200 warm up

    4x400 free

    12x100 free (ev fourth back) (1:45 int)

    200 warm down

    3200 yds total
  6. Wednesday 3/21/12

    by , March 21st, 2012 at 10:41 AM (The Labours of SwimStud)
    I did this one that Fort put out, witht he caveat that it's deceptively hard...It is but I didn't really feel it until I got out of the pool...I enjoyed I though.

    Warm up:
    500 choice
    8 x 25 shooters w/fins @ :35/:40/:45
    50 EZ
    8 x 25 no breath free w/paddles @ :35/:40/:45
    50 EZ
    Speed Sets:

    10 x 25 burst + cruise @ 1:00
    100 EZ

    8 x 25 burst + cruise @ 1:00
    100 EZ

    6 x 25 burst + cruise @ 1:00
    100 EZ

    4 x 25 burst + cruise @ 1:00
    100 EZ

    2 x burst + cruise @ 1:00
    50 EZ

    5 x 100 broken AFAP @ 6:00-7:00
    -- broken :30 rest at each 25
    -- fins optional
    -- 150 EZ after each 100

    100 EZ

    I threw in some BR and FLY to my repetitions for variety. I only did 4 x 100 (With fins) at the end due to time but I went FR,Fly, FR, BR (with fins and fly kick).
  7. 03.21.12 - Wednesday workout

    by , March 21st, 2012 at 09:11 AM (Pete's swim blog)
    Swam w/ Dave x 2. Pool temp 86.


    400 Warm up

    6 x 50 - :45
    50 Easy
    800 Timed Open Turns every 200
    2:18, 2:25, 2:22, 2:22 - 9:27
    Shooting for 1:10 pace. Ended up just under 1:11. Heat was definitely getting to me.
    50 Easy

    4 Times through
    * 250 Kick - 5:00
    * 6 x 50 - 1:00 Odds Stroke, Evens Pull, #5 Hard

    200 Cool down

    (4000 Total)
    Tags: 800, free, timed
    Swim Workouts
  8. hoping to be back to normal later today

    by , March 21st, 2012 at 07:24 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    My right leg is about 1 inch shorter at the moment meaning my hip is out again. That is the source of the pain. Chiropractic appointment should solve the problem today.

    Once again used the same warmup to loosen up my back and make my day tolerable till my appointment at noon.

    500 free w/snorkle as 50 swim/50 kick
    8x25@:45 shooters w/zoomers
    50 EZ
    8x25@:45 no breath free w/paddles *** made all but 1
    50 EZ

    10x25@1:00 burst + cruise
    100 EZ
    8x25@1:00 burst + cruise
    100 EZ
    6x25@1:00 fly burst + cruise
    100 EZ
    4x50 from drive good breakout 2 fly 2 free the first one I knew I moved wrong OUCH still finished the other 3
    100 EZ

    Total 2200 yards

    I do have a kids meet this weekend but I am swimming thru this one. Besides I actually get tired having to coach all day too. I am doing the 100 free and 100 back saturday and 200 free and 100 fly sunday. The 50 free was too late in the meet on sunday for me to be able to swim decent.
  9. 3K yesterday... Whitman's ghost.

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 11:00 PM (Alex's swim journal)
    So, I did a nice 3K continuous swim yesterday in 59 minutes. Felt surprisingly good, even after the 9000 yards the day before.

    Today I got to the end of the day and had a choice... rest or head back out to the YMCA and get in a hurried workout before closing time. I was hovering between the laptop (on a card table that serves as my desk in the bedroom) and the 15-year old, 13" portable TV on the dresser around which a stack of books has taken up residence (they don't all fit on the card table). Anything good on TV? No, not really.

    Then Walt Whitman's ghost appeared...

    Well, not really; just the old paperback of Leaves of Grass that had migrated up from the bookshelf in the den up to a place on the dresser, prepared (with Emerson, Homer, Virgil, and Dante) for conjuration on a moment's notice. Dog-eared pages called out to me... dare I ignore them? Dare I attend the voice of the dead poet? Allen Ginsberg asked where the poet Whitman was taking him that night as they walked from the supermarket. I'm taking uncle Walt back down to the den for a vacation on the bookshelf (probably won't be too long of a vacation, but you never know where the readings will lead).

    Whitman goes back to the bookshelf, I've missed my daily swim because I dove into a book and spoke with a ghost. He should haunt us all with his expansiveness. Now I don't need the book to feel him there (witness the end of "Song of Myself"):

    "I depart as air, I shake my white locks at the runaway sun,
    I effuse my flesh in eddies, and drift it in lazy jags.

    I bequeath myself to the dirt to grow from the grass I love,
    If you want me again look for me under your boot-soles.

    You will hardly know who I am or what I mean,
    But I shall be good health to you nevertheless,
    And filter and fibre your blood.

    Failing to fetch me at first keep encouraged,
    Missing me one place search another,
    I stop somewhere waiting for you."

    Click image for larger version. 

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  10. Tuesday, March 20, 2012 6:10pm

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 11:00 PM (Fast Food Makes for Fast Swimming!)
    Well, I made it home safe and sound from our trip to Seattle for my son's visits to Seattle Children's. Everything is fine...just some scheduled tests to get a baseline set of information for later events.
    Had plenty of snow on the passes going over the Cascades, and I'm pretty sure we were one of the only ones up there with studded tires on, judging from the way people were driving! Even the big trucks were doing better than most of the passenger vehicles. We got home and picked up my older daughter from my parent's house, and then I sweet-talked my wife into dropping me off at the pool for a last minute swim.

    Got this done in 50 minutes at the end of lap swim. Had to share with 1 noodler (same one from week before), and two other lap swimmers, but I made it work. After the warmup I got into my own lane that cleared out.

    500 Free
    500 Kick w/ board
    500 Free Pull
    got through all this with minimal headaches from lap traffic

    8 x 125 IM @ 1:55 (rotate extra 25 in IMO) (1:35-1:40s)

    10 x 100 Free Pull (held 1:08s throughout)
    • 3 @ 1:20
    • 3 @ 1:15
    • 2 @ 1:12.5
    • 2 @ 1:10
    100 EZ and out
    3600 Yards

    I really enjoyed that deep water pool in Seattle yesterday. Even the shallow end of their pool near the bulkhead is about 5 feet deep, going to over 12 feet pretty quick.
  11. A 3-swimsuit day!

    Today I had a fun outing to Brighton Beach with my friend Hannah. She’s the one out to visit 40 pools this year—see her blog and Patrick’s excellent interview with her on SwimmersCircle for more info on that fun project—and our primary mission was to swim at the Shorefront YM-YWHA’s 25yd pool. (Dipping in the ocean and eating local delicacies were merely side benefits.)

    When I arrived at Brighton it was chaotic—today was a special election day there, with a contentious race featuring a local candidate. There were people pamphleteering on every corner, extra security in the subway station, and the focal point of it all turned out to be the Shorefront Y, which was doubling as a polling station. I slowly made my way in and met Hannah, who had scored us free guest passes for the day. We changed in the cramped locker room and headed to the pool.

    Unlike most YMCAs, which are more or less secular workout facilities, the Shorefront Y is strongly identified with the Russian Jewish community in which it’s located. To accommodate its users’ religious observances, the Y’s pool schedule has co-ed hours, men-only hours, and ladies-only hours--we planned to try out the pool during the first and last of these, with an ocean swim sandwiched in between. We arrived during the ladies swim, which occurs around noon every day (the mens’ hours are early morning, before work). I had brought a workout, just in case we had our own lane to do with as we wished, but it was clear when we hit the pool deck that an interval workout just wasn’t going to mesh well with the other pool users. Instead, we swam mostly laps in the designated fast lane, politely dodging and working our way around the other two swimmers there.

    I felt a little uncomfortable about swimming during the ladies-only time here—the pool was semi-crowded, some of the other users didn’t have many options for enjoying the water in a way consistent with their beliefs, and I have tons of places and times that I can swim. Also, the two women swimming with us were not very accommodating lanemates (but then they were not being particularly kind to each other while passing, either) All in all, I was happy to get out after about 800 yards, change into a beach suit, and head outdoors.

    Before we did, though, we chatted with the lifeguard—Hannah asked her to take a picture of us at the pool for her blog. Turns out she was also the swim coach for the kids team at the Y, which has about 30 swimmers. She seemed ecstatic that we were at the pool, and wanted to know about our swimming backgrounds. She complimented us on being “professional swimmers!”

    The morning fog had still not scattered when we got to the beach. We spread out our blankets and sat for a while watching the seagulls. They seemed to be finding a lot of stuff to carry around—we saw quite a few flying and running around with things in their beaks. It was warm and peaceful, and we enjoyed a little snack while we chatted and waited for the sun to come out. Finally Hannah decided to go in—I stayed on the beach to watch our stuff—and she swam down to the white building and back. When I saw her heading back in I headed down to the water with her towel and parka to welcome her back to dry land.

    At the water’s edge I watched a seagull wrestling with a rather large crab. It dropped it when I got close, and the crab lay on its back waving it long legs around in the air. It had the longest legs I think I have ever seen on a crab, and I was mesmerized by its upside-down dance. Finally a wave came in and allowed the crab to turn itself back over. Standing upright, it looked just like a tarantula—a really huge tarantula. Ugh. Just then Hannah came in. I pointed out the crab to her, and she said that they were all over the bottom. “I don’t know if you’re going to like it out there,” she concluded. She knows me well! She did point out that the crab had 10 legs—we counted—whereas tarantulas would only have eight. The two extra legs weren’t that reassuring.

    I undressed and put on my cap, earplugs, and goggles, and headed in. We had talked about practicing quick entries into cold water for our 250m OW race in Iceland. Hannah managed this—I did not. If I’m this pokey in Reykjavik the race will be over before I get wet!

    I did manage to get out into the water and horizontal without seeing any crabs, at least. Then I rounded the big jetty, and there they were. First one, then two, then large groups of giant underwater tarantulas! I usually love the ocean, but today--it was like a horror movie out there. I swam out to some deeper water so that I wouldn’t be so close to them, but the water clarity seemed especially good, and I could still see the dark shapes beneath me. I decided to swim the other way—the water is deeper to the west—and it seemed for a bit like that would work. But I kept on seeing the dark shapes beneath me—by now they could have been anything, and I would have imagined tarantu-crabs. I gave up after not too long and headed in—I was pretty freaked out by the little beasties. Saturday it was seagulls, today crabs—I need to get braver about wildlife. Still, I enjoyed my brief time in the ocean, and was laughing at myself by the time I got ashore. There’s always something amazing going on at the beach!

    After our beach adventure we headed back in for part 2 of our pool workout. This time we had a much better lanemate—a young guy who was very polite—and we managed to do part of an HVT workout from several weeks ago. In the last 15 minutes of our swim the pool really cleared out---we swam some of the last set in adjacent lanes, with no one else in the pool:

    400 scy warmup
    8 x 75 IM, 4 drill, 4 swim [We alternated FL/BK/BR and BK/BR/FR]

    10 x 25 @ :45: 4 FL, 3 BK, 2 BR, 1 FR, odds fast
    200 IM fast
    4 x 50 active recovery

    That was all we had time for. Afterwards we went over to Neptune Avenue to pick up some khachapuri, then feasted during the subway ride home. A three-swimsuit day is always something to celebrate!
  12. Tuesday, 3/20/12

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 06:36 PM (A comfort swimmer's guide to easy swimming)
    SCY, with swim buddy

    Warm up:
    200 swim - 200 Kick/Swim - 200 Drill/Swim - 200 Scull/Pull by 50's

    3 x 50 back w/8-10 sdk off walls - build each to 80% @ 1:10
    - around 42± on these
    3 x 50 free w/4 sdk off walls - build each to 80% @ 1:10
    - around 36± on these

    Main Set:
    2 x the following:
    4 x 25/50
    12.5 fast / 12.5 EZ - 12.5 EZ / 12.5 fast - 25 EZ - 25 fast
    - did round 1 free, round 2 back
    50 EZ
    4 x 12.5/45 AFAP
    - mixed fly back and free

    Warm down
    400 easy free

    Total: 1900 yards

  13. Tuesday, March 20

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 03:30 PM (The FAF AFAP Digest)
    Swim/SCY w/Speedo:

    Warm up:

    600 various
    8 x 25 shooters
    4 x 25 no breath free
    50 scull
    4 x 50 @ 1:00 (aerobic work for the day. )

    Speed Sets w/fins:

    10 x 25 burst + cruise @ 1:00
    -- dolphin and speed drills
    125 EZ

    1 x 50 AFAP shooter w/MF
    -- 18 high
    -- wow, I think I just broke 20 for the first time last time I tried this
    100 EZ

    1 x 50 AFAP fly
    -- 22 high-23 flat
    200 EZ

    1 x broken AFAP 100 dolphin kick w/fins & board
    -- break :10 each 25
    -- :46
    -- much ouchy. broken 100s kicks are worse than broken 100 swims

    700 IG
    -- Speedo left and I gamely carried on without him. I wanted to repeat the above sets, but didn't have the gumption to do another broken 100 right at the end. Subbed in another 50 instead.

    10 x 25 burst + cruise @ 1:00
    -- all turnover speed drills
    100 EZ

    1 x 50 AFAP breast
    -- 27 mid
    200 EZ

    1 x 50 AFAP breast
    -- 27 mid-high
    200 EZ

    1 x 50 AFAP fly-back
    -- 22 high-23 flat
    175 EZ

    Total: 3800

    hottub, 15 min


    Was slightly tired at the beginning, probably still catching up on sleep. But that did not seem to hinder me unduly. Got in a goodly amount of speed work with 20 bursts, 5 AFAP 50s and 1 broken 100. I was in the pool almost 2 hours with all the IG. My legs are tired. Need to search for the compression leggings!

    I mentioned to Speedo that I have a theory on the inconsistency of my fly breakouts. I have no idea if this is valid, and not just coincidence, but I seem to have better breakouts when swimming in 7-8 foot depth rather than 12-13 foot depth. Perhaps the somewhat shallower depth helps me gauge the breakout better? Just a thought.

    Warm downs:
    -- Interesting note: it takes longer for the neural system to recover. Since sprinting is so neural, this could explain why we sprinters can't just "get up and go" like some of you mid-D types.

    Updated March 20th, 2012 at 04:46 PM by The Fortress

    Swim Workouts
  14. Sarasota Y Sharks Masters 5:30 AM Workout -03/21/12

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 12:23 PM (Sarasota Y Sharks Masters GOLD Workout)
    WARM UP:
    1 X 200 3:20 3:00
    4 X 100 1:40 1:30
    4 X 50 :50 :45
    1 X 200 kick 5:00 -
    Two rounds. Round 1 intervals left, 2 right.

    8 X 50 kick 1:00

    1 X 100 easy 2:00
    1 X 100 fast 2:00
    1 X 100 easy 3:00
    1 X 75 fast 1:30
    1 X 100 easy 3:00
    1 X 50 fast 1:00
    1 X 75 easy 2:00
    Two rounds, all choice.


    6 X 200 IM 3:30
    Descend 1-3/4-6


    4 X 300 free 4:00
    Descend 1-4

    WARM DOWN: 4 X 50 easy 1:00

    Swim Workouts
  15. Taper Day 2 - 3/20/12

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 12:06 PM (Workout Swimmer)
    Felt much better this morning - possibly because the water was much cooler as well. Taking it easy is HARD. Did my usual warm-up, and then a little bit of harder stuff.

    600 - 100 free, 25 back/25 breast repeat x 4
    3 x 200 pull
    300 kick w/zoomers
    10 x 50; 5 on :50, 5 pull no paddles on :45
    4 x 150 breast/free/breast
    3 x 100 pull on 1:25 (held around 1:15)
    50 pull no paddles easy
    3 x 100 pull on 1:20 (held around 1:12/13)
    50 pull no paddles easy
    100 cool down
    Total: 3400 SCY
  16. 200 BR Splits...what a great race!

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 11:30 AM (The Labours of SwimStud)
    4 Bell, Richard J M42 MESC 2:46.37 2:43.09

    5 Abreu, Joel M31 BCTM 2:46.78 2:42.98

    Joel if you're reading this...great race! Thanks Man!
  17. 03.20.12 - Tuesday workout

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 09:00 AM (Pete's swim blog)
    Swam w/ Dave. Pool temp 86+.


    400 Warm up

    5 x 300 - 4:30 Descend (3:53, 3:45, 3:40, 3:32, 3:27)
    100 Easy

    6 times through
    * 50 Free - :50
    * 25 Fly - :20 no breath
    * 50 Free - :50

    3 times through
    * 25 Free Kick/25 Free - 1:00
    * 25 Free - :20 no breath
    * 25 Free Kick/25 Free - 1:00
    * 25 Free/25 Fly Kick - 1:00
    * 25 Fly - :20 no breath
    * 25 Free/25 Fly Kick - 1:00
    50 Easy

    400 Timed Pull (4:23) - I think this is my fastest 400 timed pull. I'm finally getting a faster turnover with my bigger paddles.

    200 Cool down

    (4150 Total)
    Tags: 400, pull, timed
    Swim Workouts
  18. another really bad back day but not as bad as yesterday

    by , March 20th, 2012 at 07:22 AM (Mixing it up this year)
    I did the same warmup as yesterday in the hopes it would loosen me up and it worked. This may become more of a standard since it works welll. Thanks Leslie.

    I might have pushed harder then intended on this but once my back was loose and with the paddles I can rock!

    500 free w/snorkle alt 50 swim/50 kick

    W/paddles & zoomers
    16x50@1:00 free perfect stroke technique (also pushed hard on these) went 39,38,37,35,35,35,34,33,34,34,34,34,34,33,34,34
    1:00 rest
    50@1:00 strong build went 34
    1:00 rest
    12x50@1:00 free perfect stroke technique went 34,34,34,34,34,33,33,33,32,33,33,33
    1:00 rest
    50@1:00 strong 90% went 33
    1:00 rest
    8x50@1:00 free perfect stroke technique went 33,33,33,33,34,33,33,33
    1:00 rest
    50@1:00 AFAP went 31
    1:00 rest
    50 EZ

    100 EZ

    Total 2600 yards
  19. Back to the lab

    10 min choice
    --300 w/bouy
    --200 dolphin kick w/fins
    --100 IM drill

    4 x 400 IM broken
    done as
    2 x 50 fly r/10
    100 bk r/10
    100 br r/10
    100 fr r/10

    100 fly r/10
    2 x 50 bk r/10
    100 br r/10
    100 fr r/10

    100 fly r/10
    100 bk r/10
    2 x 50 r/10
    100 fr r/10

    100 fly r/10
    100 bk r/10
    100 br r/10
    2 x 50 r/10

    50 ez

    10 x 200
    --odds free @ 2:45
    --evens stroke choice @ 3:15

    200 w/d


    After weekends filled with gymnastics meets, dance competitions, traveling out of town for other personal issues our family is back to a "normal" schedule. We have been at home for a total of five weekends since Oct. Now it's time to get all I can out of my training for the next month.

    The 50's on the broken IM's were suppose to be faster than our race splits. I nailed those but need to push the back a little more.

    The last 200 coach had us rest a extra 45 and swim it for time. I went backstroke and nailed that also. Another good confidence builder!

    Back to the lab.
  20. Monday 3/19/12

    Monday 3/19

    AM and PM SCY

    AM swim:

    500 swim
    500 pull
    500 kick w/ fins

    3x50 drill @ 1:00
    1x100 strong @ 1:30

    3x50 kick w/ board @ 1:00
    1x100 w/ paddles + overkick @ 1:30

    100 EZ

    Total: 3600

    PM swim:

    500 swim
    5x100 K/S/Dr/Bld @ 1:30

    4x150 BoA/C-U/DPS* by 50 @ 2:30
    1x400 Dr/S by 50 @ 6:00
    4x150 surf kick/overkick/swim by 50 @ 2:30
    2x400 6-beat kick @ :30 rest
    4x150 6-beat kick @ 2:30
    3x400 breathe 3/5/7 by 50 @ :30 rest

    21x50 1 line/2 lines/3 lines** under H2O @ :50

    350 EZ

    Total: 6600

    * Bow and arrow drill, Catch-up drill

    ** Our pool is lined both lengths and widths for 25 yard competition, so the lines correspond to the black lines running perpendicular to the direction we were swimming.
    Swim Workouts