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by Author Unknown

February 9, 2010

Motivation and tradition keep him going

Ted Collins, 46, who swims unattached with Arizona Masters, is the youngest of 11 children. Like his brothers and sisters before him, he learned to swim at a young age and participated in a YMCA team until he was 10.

While in college and during his mid-20s Collins did some lap swimming but did not get back into regular swimming until, while staying home with his sons, who were one and two at the time, he found quiet time in lap swimming at the local YMCA.

His boys are now six and seven and, in keeping with family tradition, are swimming with the local YMCA swim team.

Collins still stays home with his boys, trades stocks and options (his background is as a CPA, CMA and MBA), and volunteers on four boards and related committees. He also participates in a community-based leadership training program.

Collins typically swims five mornings a week, Monday through Friday, and three afternoons with the YMCA Masters swim team. Weekends are for hiking and biking with the family. Most of his workouts run about 2,500 yards, with the morning workouts always beginning with a 1650. Collins prefers distance swimming as he enjoys getting into a rhythm and having the time for good, extended thought. In 2009, he swam over 400 miles and would love to have a "negative split" in 2010 but admits, "Anything over a mile a day would be great."

Collins joined USMS in 2009 after reading "Swimming Past 50" by Mel Goldstein and David Tanner. The book motivated him to add more interval training to his swimming, to work more on technique, and to try his hand at competition after a 35-year swimming hiatus. He particularly enjoys freestyle and backstroke and began competing in those strokes, quickly adding an IM to motivate himself to improve his breaststroke and butterfly. He did three meets in 2009, including the AZ SCY state championships. He has really enjoyed his meet experiences.

He has also enjoyed his involvement in the Go the Distance program. "Participating in GTD has been terrific. I initially signed up because I liked the idea of measuring my progress and having a goal to motivate me. I've found I enjoy the monthly reports as a way to compare my progress to my goal and to others. I am constantly amazed by the amount of swimming everyone has done. Keep up the good work!" Collins says.

(submitted by the fitness education committee)


  • Human Interest


  • Goal Setting
  • GTD
  • Motivation
  • Biography