Monday, January 30, 2012

First day with SALT

This morning I was at the Steiner 25 minutes too early.  They don't open their doors until 5am sharp.  So good now that I know what to expect on commute, if I leave my house at 4:15am (the same time as when I left for SDRC), I'll make it just in time for the doors to open.

I started out with 1200 yards free before swimming with the SALT Masters club:

600 yards free warmup
450 - 9 x 50's drill/kick
900 - 9 x 100's free (3 sets of 3 x 100's on 1:25, 1:20, 1:15)
1800 - 9 x 200's (first 5 pull) - progressively build back (200 free, 175 free/25 back, 150 free/50 back.. 200 back)
I was lapped 4 times on this so I was behind 200 yards by the end of it, but will make up for it at after the workout
900 - 9 x 100's back (time didn't matter I was so slow, I was going the whole time)
450 - 9 x 50's breathing drills (3,4,5,6,7,8...)
Ended up talking with Will for quite a while after this after which we resumed with:
1800 - 9 x 200's pull (first 5 large paddles, last 4 with finger paddles) on 2:45
700 - 7 x 100's kick with fins on :50
(200 makeup on backstroke slowness)
8,800 yards total in 3:00

It was nice to talk with Will this morning.  He's got alot of really cool ideas.  
I also tried the Perpetuem (Caffe Latte flavor) this morning.  It wasn't terrible.  It was alot better than the Heed.  It was still not as flavorful as I would like, and tasted like chilled hot chocolate.  The only flavor of the perpetuem I had was this kind.  I'm just ordered some of the Orange/Vanilla flavor.  So at this point the Perpetuem is way better than the Heed.  The other stuff I got from Hammer was recovery stuff, and electolyte pills.  Anyway, if you wanna tryout the perpetuem, go to their website.  Find what you want, and then call in your order at Hammer, and mention my client # as a referral to get a 15% discount.  My client # is: 196437

Saturday, January 28, 2012

-2.5°C in GSL Marina

Air temp was -1°C this morning.  I picked up Michelle and headed out to the Marina.  When we got there the water wasn't moving at all.  It was really calm.  The sun had just come up and the was no wind and the water was flat.  Lots of brine shimp eggs in the marina this morning.  It looked dirty, but just eggs.  Because of the thick layer of the eggs, and the lack of wind and water movement, the water was actually really slushy and in some places icy and sharp.  So I didn't end up doing any swimming.  In fact I just did plunge today.  Kind of wimpy.  Here's some video to see the slushiness:

It was kind of nice to just do a dip this time.  I didn't have any shaky recovery, numb fingers or painful toes, it was actually pretty fun!  I felt quite a bit like a slacker on the way back, but I'll give a much better effort next Thursday.  I was only immersed for about 10 seconds.  It was amazing thinking that Lewis Pugh and Lynn Cox swam in water this cold for more than 20 minutes!  On the way back to the car I looked at the water east of the parking lot and there was no ice over there.  If it is slushy inside the marina again, I'm gonna get in on the east side of the marina and do a swim over there instead.

On the way back to SLC, we stepped inside the Saltair building which was being used as a packet pickup for a running race.  I've never been in there and was curious what it was like.  I was a little underwhelmed with how big it was on the inside and definitely not a pretty place in there.  Made me wish to see the original Saltair I to compare.

Then we headed up to SLC Sports Complex (my new pool) and I bought a annual pass.  Good thing Michelle came along cause she said while I was buying it, "What medical insurance do you use".  I said, "Select Health". The person at the front desk looked at my insurance card and gave me 10% off and the annual pass (including masters, and the ability to go to any other SL County pool), came to $260!  Almost a hundred less than I paid last year!  Sweet!

I don't make a habit of drinking
pool water, but you can't help
but get a "taste" for a certain
pool, and Steiner has a very foul
We shared a lane and I did my own workout since I wasn't sure what she wanted to do exactly.   But I knew she wasn't in the mood for a three hour swim, so I kept today's swim short.

1000 free
2000 - 10 x 200's free w/ finger paddles on 2:55
800 - 8 x 100's  first 5 free, last 3 breast easy

3,800 yards total in 1:02

Friday, January 27, 2012

Turning polygamist (from a swimmer's perspective)

Since my yearly membership at South Davis Rec Center expires today, I'm finally making the move.  Here's the deal:  Salt Lake County has several pools, three of which are relatively close to my work.  One of them has a fantastic masters club that I've attended a few times before.  Plus the yearly membership at SL county is much cheaper AND includes masters, whereas at SDRC masters was an additional $20/month on top of the yearly membership.  Seems like a no brainer to me.

Plus every once in a while I'd show up at the pool and a sign was up just announcing that the pool was closed for a meet, and "Sorry for the inconvenience".  With the SL County premium pass if one pool is down, no biggie, I can just go to one of the others.  Not tied down to just one pool.  Nice!  However once summer gets here I probably won't swim in the pool more than once a week anyway.

After reading Evan's post on sport nutrition, I decided I really need to get away from my love for Gatorade as my preferred energy source.  So this week I made an appeal to Hammer Nutrition for some help finding something that was "Just what I needed".  Last night I got the big box full of trial samples of Heed products.  For my first day I tried the Orange Flavored Heed.

I mixed it up last night and put it in the fridge.  The one serving is to be mixed with 16-24 ounces of water.  I opted for 16, as I like to taste the flavor.  During today's workout I took a drink after every 1000.  It was terrible.  I must be spoiled with the sharp tang of gatorade, but the heed tasted like toilet water.  It wasn't flavorful.  I could barely taste the orange and it wasn't sweet at all.  Seriously something I'll not continue using.   The back of the label suggested I try something called "Perpetuem" that supposedly is intended to be stronger and supports longer endurance sports.  I have several other flavors of Heed and I'll try them, but I don't expect them to be much better especially if they're not tangy and tasty.  I'll continue to report my personal findings.

Every athlete's preferences are different and I want something I can taste!  Especially after spending hours in super salty water that can wake up my taste buds after being exposed to salt.  And at the same time fuel me.

I left my Swimsense at work on the charger so today's workout was done in sets of 100's  or thousands so it wouldn't be that difficult to keep track.  (My brain has gone soft ever since not being required to keep track myself).

1000 free easy
1000 - 10 x 100's finger paddles on 1:27.5
1000 free focus on efficient pull
1000 - 10 x 100's back/breast drill
1000 free
1000 - 10 x 100's PT paddle on 1:50
1000 free (Wow!  I love those PT paddles.  It really makes a difference in my technique!)
1000 - 10 x 100's kick with fins on first 800
1000 free
1000 - 10 x 100's pull with big TYR paddles on 1:20 (held 1:15 on all)
100 breast easy

10,100 yards total in 3:00 even

Tomorrow I'll go to SLC Sports Complex and get my yearly pass.  I'm setup with USMS to belong to the SALT Masters club, so now I get to start swimming with them.  No hard feelings South Davis, and I apologize for the inconvenience!  But the appeal of having multiple pool options at my beckon call is too alluring!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Fingernail pain

Capturing the temperature.  My therm
always reads about 2-3 degrees
cooler than Josh and Jim's, so take my
reported temps "with a grain of salt".
Fingernails are consisted of dead cells.  Well they are even more dead now.  After getting out of the GSL which registered on my "cold" digital thermometer at 36°F, my hands were numb as normal.  I did my "long" route of the boat ramp out to the marina opening and back.  A distance of roughly 350 yards.

I started my watch when I entered the water, but forgot to stop it when I got out.   I estimate that it was just under 4 minutes based on my previous experience with this distance in this cold water.  I did stop it at the point where I finally felt where any "after drop" was over and the tingling was starting to feel good, rather than bad.  It was 26 minutes after first entering the water.  Which means the first 20 minutes or so after getting out is the worst part, but after that.... Fantastic!  Except strange thing is, my fingernails are numb.
Getting ready to get in is a little
difficult, much more so than
the actual swim.

Today's crew was:  Jim, Goody and his fellow teacher, Nate.  Then myself and Josh.  It was a little rainy, but the air temp was a comfortable 45°.

This week, the Daily News of Open Water Swimming posted this article on Brown Fat.  Great.  I feel so much better about my pudginess.

Total: 350 yards in just under 4 minutes

Burdened with thoughts

Today's workout was fun and went well, however I wasn't really feeling all that into it as I was burdened with thoughts, but I'll share that after reporting the swim:

Thanks to Loneswimmer, I bought some new PT Paddles and Finger paddles and this morning I tried them out for the first time.

2000 free
1000 kick - 2 x 500 kick with fins
2000 free
1000 free w/ PT Paddles
PT stands for "Perfect Technique".  My first length with these was really funky!  It has the effect of swimming without any hands.  When you pull, your arm comes back and it almost feels like you aren't getting any catch at all.  They're designed that way.  It forces you (if you want to actually make forward motion) to pull back efficiently with a bent elbow and avoiding the "S" pull.  If you do the "S" pull, you almost don't go anywhere.  You have to pull properly.  These are also called "Anti-paddles" as they have the reverse effect.  That is true.  If I were to name these, I'd call them "Grateful paddles".  It makes you so grateful to have hands.  There are some special athlete swimmers who probably don't have hands and this gives you just a tiny little taste of what it's like to have a disability.  When you take them off and just swim without equipment, you feel like you're wearing paddles cause you get a good pull and really fly!
1000 free no equip
1000 free w/finger paddles
 These paddles really make you focus on your hand position.  If you start your catch too soon, then the front of the paddle catches the water and stretches the front of the paddle away from your fingers.  You have to watch that your hand enters the water properly, and that when you initiate your catch you actually pull the water back.  Otherwise your hand position slows you down and you're quickly able to identify why.  These were fun, and definitely no strain on the shoulder.
1000 free no equip

9,000 yards total in 2:35
Definitely not an intense workout day.  When I wasn't experimenting with paddles I was thinking about this story.  I try to put myself in the shoes of the relatives of those who were wronged, and I just have a hard time coming to the conclusion that a grave robber should receive such a cruel and unusual punishment.  I can only come up with three explanations:  

  1. This story is just a wives tale and makes for a great campfire story for a bunch of scouts who like this kind of crap.
  2. John Baptiste must have been guilty of even more heinous crimes. Perhaps mutilating the bodies?  I mean he took clothes from people who didn't need them?  IMHO the way we bury dead people is SO STUPID.  I realize we want to respect their body, but it's just dust people!  Their spirit is what matters after they die.  Personally I want to be cremated and put in a mason jar, not put in an overpriced box and buried deep in the earth taking up space.  The inefficiency drives me crazy!
  3. This scenario scares me the most:  The "saints" of the time, including the religious leaders, were so overcome with vengeance, (and not a sense of justice) that they gave in to their anger and acted like animals rather than "saints".  How could you justify sending someone to an island all by themselves without means to properly survive?  The crime simply doesn't justify the punishment in this case.  So I'm hoping that it's actually the first explanation.
I'm actually going to watch a movie about this story on Saturday.  I hope it clears things up a little for me instead of making me even more mad.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

At least I can spell S-W-I-M

There's this inspirational movie that I saw at my in-laws last year called Akeela and the Bee.  I watched it last night and there's a scene where she reads a motivational passage in the film.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.  Our deepest feat is that we are powerful beyond measure.  We ask ourselves, "Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?"  Actually, who are you not to be?  We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.  And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same." - a modified version of a quote from a book by Marianne Williamson

Good stuff.  Anyone can live their dreams.  One step at a time right?  Believe in yourself!

This morning, the lifeguard was up in the chair at 4:50.  What the heck?  That was awesome to get a jump start on the day.  Today's swim was fantastic.  It was all about just maintaining a strong pace:

10,000 - 4 x 2500 free no equipment, no stopping, just go!
600 - 100 IM/free/back/free/breast/free

10,600 yards total in 2:45

Felt great and was able to not only keep up, but lap some guy I was sharing a lane with who had the biggest diving fins I've ever seen!  Resting tomorrow since the pool will be closed for HS regionals.  Will pick it back up on Thursday.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Today I'm the douchebag

This morning I was in the pool exactly at 0500 and had a great workout:

2000 free
2500 free
1 x 100 on 1:30, 2 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 3 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 4 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 5 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 4 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 3 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 2 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 1 x 100 free
500 kick

2500 free
1 x 100 on 1:30, 2 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 3 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 4 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 5 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 4 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 3 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 2 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 1 x 100 free
500 kick

2500 free
1 x 100 on 1:30, 2 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 3 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 4 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 5 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 4 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 3 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 2 x 100's on 1:30 (last on 1:25), 1 x 100 free
Near the start of this set, some guy got in next lane over and was swimming free straight (like 3000), and I was doing my 100's.  He was holding probably 1:25's so I tried staying up with him.  It was nice pacing with him, but his steady pace was a bit faster than 1:30 so he ended up lapping me.  I wanted to just cut my intervals down, but I already felt like a douchebag for racing him.  Typically its the other way around where I'm doing distance and some doofus gets in and does hundreds and tries racing.  Props to that guy for the nice distance pace.
500 kick

2500 free pull
100 back/breast

13,600 yards total in 3:34

This last week my mom's neighbor was cleaning out his garage.  He had a photograph that was blown up to poster size of Saltair in 1900.  He didn't want it and gave it to her.  She called me a couple days ago and asked me if I wanted it.  Holy Christmas Eve yeah!  I'm psyched, I feel like old Saltair is my personal Xanadu.

Wouldn't it be sweet to go back in time and see this place?  I'd give my left foot to go there.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

10 feet in the morning, 7 miles at night

Left foot, left foot, left foot, right!

This morning I met Goody, Michelle, Josh and Jim at Fort Bueneventura Park for the North Davis Prep Academy's polar bear plunge fund raiser.  They had cleared out a 30 foot by 20 foot section of ice in the pond.  It was rainy and muddy.  I took a water temp and it read 36 high.  I charged up my Go Pro for this thing.  I was wearing it at the time that I jumped in and it the head strap fell off.  My new sandals that I bought also were stuck in about 2 feet of mud at the bottom of the pond.  It was only about 3 feet deep.  My first priority was finding the Go Pro.  Jim found it feeling around.  Man I really need to get that floating attachment for it!

The water didn't feel that cold.  We had a fun time getting together, but it was only a 10 foot swim, in muddy water.  So this evening I went to SDRC for a decent workout.  Ended up doing:

4000 - 2 x 2000 free nice long strokes
1000 kick with fins
3000 pull
2000 - 10 x 200's odd back/breast on 4:00, even free on 3:00
2000 free channel pace
600 - 200 IM, 200 free, 200 IM warmdown

12,600 yards total in 3:15

Felt strong, yet relaxed the whole time.  By the time I got to the kicking set I felt like I just barely got in.  It went by really fast.  Here's what my swimsense logged.  I stopped it for my 1000 kick set, but the rest it got.

Some kid must have had his swim suit pocket FULL of gummy bears because there were about a dozen spread all over the pool floor.  With the underwater lights making them stand out like tiny little jewels.  It was really pretty with all the different colors and light reflecting.  Reminded me of the time I asked a girl out to a dance and she answered by throwing a ton of diving rings in the pool while I was swimming.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Hypoxic training

This morning's workout was fantastic.  I didn't feel tired at all, the shoulder was at 100% and I swam with some pretty decent power.

2000 free
2000 free
1000 kick
2000 pull
2000 free
2000 free
1000 hypoxic training:
10 over unders on 1:15, 10 x 50's free descend 10-1 breaths per 50 on 1:15
12,000 yards total in 3:25

I totally forgot how fun hypoxic work is.  As long as I get enough rest to catch my breath, I'm good.  I also finalized the switch from Montana LMSC to Utah, with SALT as my preferred club.  I must have been on a man period when I made the stupid move to the cheapest LMSC.   My membership at SDRC expires the end of next week and I'm looking forward to swimming at SLCSC with Will and the other fast swimmers there on a regular basis.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Lexy Kelly's Christmas set

Was looking for some speed work today so I stole Lexy Kelly's Christmas workout and modified it a little to accommodate my slow butt, but not too much.

1000 free warmup
400 - 1 x 100 on 1:35, 1 x 100 on 1:30, 1 x 100 on 1:25, 1 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute
800 - 2 x 100 on 1:35, 2 x 100 on 1:30, 2 x 100 on 1:25, 2 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute

1200 - 3 x 100 on 1:35, 3 x 100 on 1:30, 3 x 100 on 1:25, 3 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute

1600 - 4 x 100 on 1:35, 4 x 100 on 1:30, 4 x 100 on 1:25, 4 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute
2000 - 5 x 100 on 1:35, 5 x 100 on 1:30, 5 x 100 on 1:25, 5 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute

1600 - 4 x 100 on 1:35, 4 x 100 on 1:30, 4 x 100 on 1:25, 4 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute 
1200 - 3 x 100 on 1:35, 3 x 100 on 1:30, 3 x 100 on 1:25, 3 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute 
800 - 2 x 100 on 1:35, 2 x 100 on 1:30, 2 x 100 on 1:25, 2 x 100 pull on 1:20
rest 1 minute 
Cha-ching!  8 new Jammers, 3 new Goggles, 1 Parka,
One spoiled dude!
400 - 1 x 100 on 1:35, 1 x 100 on 1:30, 1 x 100 on 1:25, 1 x 100 pull on 1:20
400 cooldown (back, free, breast, free)

11,400 yards total in 3:01

Got my new parka with the eight jammers yesterday.  I'm set for a while.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

One of my favorite moments of the day

Getting up at 3:40 am pretty much sucks.  I sit up and move my feet off the side of the bed.  Cathi lately has been scratching my back for about 30 seconds while I wake up and get my bearings.  That simple act makes one of the hardest moments of the day, turn into one of my favorite moments of the day!  She's such a fantastic woman!

This morning I was in the pool at 5:00 sharp and did:

3000 free straight
3000 - 2 x 1500's free (first one pull, second one no equipment)
Half way through the last set I just wasn't feeling energized, and felt like crap.  Within a few minutes quite a few people got in the pool and it started to fill up.  A couple people got in my lane and initiated a change to circle swimming.  I didn't mind, in fact it kind of got my mind off of how tired I was.  It was exactly what I needed to get back into it and swim with some umph!  
3000 - 1000 kick, 1000 pull, 10 x 100's alternate stroke/free on 2:00, 1:30
1500 - 2 x 750's free strong on 11:00
750 - 500 strong, 100 sprint (1:11), 100 back, 50 breast

11,250 yards in 3:18

Monday, January 16, 2012


This morning the pool had a foul taste to it.  Like I was swimming in bleach.  Gross!  I got through it though.

4000 - 2 x 2000's free on 31:00 (landed both less than 2 seconds from each other (30:07, 30:05)
1000 - 10 x 100's stroke (back/breast)/free no rest interval
1000 kick with fins
1000 pull

4000 - 2 x 2000's free strong

11,000 yards total in 3:03

Noticed this event for February, and I think I'm gonna do it.  The yards option and not the 27 day option.  I'm shooting for 250,000 yards for the month of February.  Who wants to swim every single day for a month?  That's not good for you!  Even God took rest one day out of 7.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

One Hour Postal 2012

This morning I carpooled with Goody and Michelle down to Pleasant Grove for the Utah Polar Bear.  The website announced the date for 2013 which I thought was really odd seeing that the event for 2012 hasn't even happened yet.  But I did see
"In a unified effort to gather donations for local charities, we will be hosting the Utah Polar Bear Plunge at Utah Lake on January 14th, 2012! Come Swim, or come watch. Either way, bring in the new year with a SPLASH and support a good cause!"
The facebook page did NOT have anything on it stating that the 2012 event was cancelled, just again, the 2013 date.  Why didn't they PLASTER both their website and facebook page that the 2012 event was cancelled?  And what about my $35 donation?  How do I know that it's actually gonna go to where I intended it?  Seems extremely unprofessional!  I got a text back from them saying:
Sorry!  The polar bear swim was postponed several months ago.  The details have been on our website?  Sorry for any trouble.
Josh collecting one of the boulders that
didn't make it through
the ice.
Very lame.  If I cancelled the GSL swim by just putting up the 2013 date instead of sending out emails, and updating facebook and website saying "THE 2012 event is cancelled!!!!", or giving money back, then I'd be in big trouble.  That's a terrible example of event planning and execution.

Anyway, we made the best of it and Josh and Goody got busy trying to bust a hole in the 3 inch thick ice right near the shore.  After about a dozen boulder slams on the ice, there was a small hole big enough to just sit in the 12 inches of water.

Josh soaking it up in the ice
It actually was quite pleasant.  
Josh was first to get in and he laid back in the water with his legs under the ice.  Goody and Michelle also got in.  I was in a crappy mood and figured I might as well get in too.

I got my shoes off and got ready while Goody was in (so I don't have a pic of Goody, hoping Josh posts some too).  The ice on my feet was actually pretty painful, but getting in the water wasn't that bad.  Oh well.  It was fun getting together for this even though it was highly disappointing not participating in the full blown event.  Another guy showed up who also was expecting to do this, I forgot his name, but he took his turn to get in the little hole in the ice for a picture.  So at least we weren't the only ones that got duped.

Goody and Josh weren't gonna
just come down here without
some kind of cold water pain!  
After that we drove back and dropped of Michelle at home, and Goody and I went to SDRC where I was going to do my one hour postal swim for the year.  I was hoping to get at least 4200 yards, but thanks to Goody's cheering and pacing, I was able to get 4,350 yards exactly in 1 hour.  Not to bad considering the facial drag I've got going, well, and the fact that I haven't done a whole lot of speed training.  I'm turning into a fitness swimmer and not a competitive swimmer.  Which I'm OK with.  I just can't expect to be super speedy anymore.  It was cool having Goody there and he was giving me handsignals underwater and yelling at me underwater which made me pick it up just a bit.  But I never felt really with it on the swim and was hurting right from the start.  I did do a 100 yard warmup before the swim, and that's probably where I went wrong. I should have done an easy 1000 first, but I felt like the day was wasting away and needed to get going.

Here's the detailed data from my swim which was captured on my swimsense.

Total yards:

100 easy
4350 fast
50 breast

4500 yards total


Friday, January 13, 2012

Small Taper for tomorrow

Tomorrow at noon is a polar bear plunge with and a bunch of other folks for charity.
 Afterwards I'm heading to SDRC with Goody and I'm gonna do a one hour postal.

 This morning I did a short little sprint set.

1000 free fast (13:29)
400 - 4 x 100's free on 1:30 (got 1:15-1:17 on them)
250 easy

1,650 yards total

Tapering always makes me feel like such a slacker!  Not to be a pessimist, but I don't think beating my distance from last year is gonna happen. I just haven't done the necessary speed work.  I'll be happy if I get more than 4200 yards.  I'll blame it on the facial drag I've got going.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Lament of a winter swimmer

This frozen lake doth shock my heart.
Yet numb with pain, from swimming 
through the cold cruel pockets upon this earth,
I will rejoice!
And swim in these warmer waters.

This morning's swim for some reason was spent compiling poetry and wasn't the most intense workout I've ever had.  It was hard to really focus today, so I ended up putting in a mediocre workout.

The poem from above is an adaptation from one I had compiled decades ago.
Today's swim:
2000 free
1000 kick
1000 - 5 x 200's odd IM, even free touch and pull drill
2250 pull

6,250 yards total in 2:05

Here's one more that I came up with this morning:

I'm not Superman, 
but I CAN fly!
Gliding forward, 
separated from earth, a natural high.
What calm I feel 
watching the depths below,
An experience
that man and fish, 
share and know.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Can't wait to see Dr.

I have a Dr. appointment for February to get the medical paperwork all filled out for the English Channel.  I'm extra eager to see him so I can ask about getting a test for Mercury poisoning.  I doubt he's ever had that request before.  But there is this old quack who is really persistent on preaching to me how dangerous the GSL is due to high levels of mercury.  I can't wait to have a test done so I can either concede that it's a problem, or shut this dude up.

This morning's swim was awesome.  I did a bunch of descending free/stroke work:

2000 free
I LOVE my swimsense!  I can just just zone out and swim.  Check it after a long period of time and then realize I only have 100 yards left till my warm up is over.  Sweetest invention ever!
3500 - 10 x (250 free/100 stroke) w/10 rest
2000 free pull
2500 - 10 x (150 free/100 stroke) w/10 rest
500 kick with fins
1000 - 10 x 100's (50 free all out/50 stroke recovery) on 1:45

 11,500 yards total in 3:02

Monday, January 9, 2012

What if...

Jack got back to me, and it looks like the plan for the Bering Straight Relay is the third week in July through the second week of August.  Right in the middle of my trip to England.  If I hadn't already paid for the airfare, lodging and pilot deposits, I would highly consider changing plans, but I'm already invested thousands of dollars into the EC Crossing.  That would have been fun!  And I would have loved to do some serious training for that cold water adventure!  Perhaps another day.

This morning's workout was a little rough.  My shoulder wasn't really in pain, just a little achy.  My membership at SDRC ends on Jan 27th, so I'm looking into a SL County Premium pass which gets me into any SL County pool and includes masters.  And it's still $40 cheaper than SDRC which does not include masters.

I'm thinking about my recent rant about USMS and about the Utah LMSC and I'm kind of ashamed for being such a baby.  I'm looking into getting my membership back in Utah where it belongs.  It's only $10 more!  What was I going on about?!  What a doofus.

4000 - 2 x 2000 free
650 pull
I was interrupted in the middle of my workout so Masters swimmers could swim in the north end of the bulkhead which was moved over the weekend.  So looks like I'll have to start on the south side in order to avoid any lane conflicts.
1350 pull
2000 free
600 kick
400 - 4 x 100's on 1:30 easy

9,000 yards total in 2:20

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Best swim this week

(There is some swimming in this post, but LOTS of drama today so just skip to the end if you just wanna see the workout)

I didn't swim yesterday, I slept in and had to get to work at a good time so that I could leave at 3 for a scout camp.  The scout camp was at Willard Bay.  I wasn't sure if the water was going to be completely frozen or not.  I was hoping to get in a polar bear.  But after we set up camp, had dinner, and paid for our site it was completely dark and lots of boys wanted to go down to the waters edge to check it out.

This isn't one of my scouts.  Notice
he disregards the danger sign, just like I told the boys
not to.  He went anyway.
Sure enough it was completely frozen.  How thick I didn't know.  Some of the boys started to go out onto the ice and I said, "I don't think that's a good idea, we haven't tested it and I'm not sure how thick it has to be to be safe to walk on".  Did they listen.  No.  Some of them started to go deeper and deeper away from the edge onto the ice and I started to yell.  Still they were too busy goofing around and playing and not listening.  So I said, "Ok guys!  I'm heading back if you wanna ride come now!"  By the time I got to the van and started it (which was only 30 feet from the edge of the bay), they started to come.  I should have had a serious discussion right there and then about them needing to listen to me and take my warning seriously.  But we just headed back.

After our campfire program and closing prayer all the boys started playing fugitive in the darkness while I tended to the campfire and kept it roaring.  Everyone was running around and having a good time.  No snow was on the ground last night actually.  It was a little cool, probably about 45, but not bone chilling.  About 8:30 a handful of boys come near the fire and apparently they had walked the five minutes to the bay and played on the ice and one of them had fallen through and fortunately was only up to his knees and he was able to get out.  All the other boys admitted to running around out there with him, but they had escaped the collapse.  

Again, I should have severely scolded the boys, but I'm not a good scout leader, I let ALOT of things roll over.    But I am REALLY tired.  If I got on them for every single thing I'd be hounding them minute after minute.  Tomorrow I'm gonna lay it all out on the table in our church meeting.  I hate feeling like a bad guy, but these kids are like kindergartners and half of them need a good hiding, but that wouldn't be acceptable coming from me.

Jack Bright's the first guy I've seen wear his cap Napolean
style.  I've started to do it for my winter swims.
I'm like a little kid who mimics his hero.
Anyway, when I got home I found an email from Jack Bright.  He was inviting me to consider joining the team of relay swimmers crossing the Bering Straight this year.   WHAT!?  I don't consider myself even closely in the same league as those doing that swim.  Granted we're swimming in water that is down to 2°, but for only 3-4 minutes max.  I'm still very much a newbie.   Sure I'm extremely enthusiastic about winter swimming, but I'm hardly in the class of people who are doing first ever swims in the arctic.  I was very humbled by the request and initially responded that my schedule was so full for this year and would definitely consider it in future years especially with greater winter swimming experience.  When Cathi got home from her errands I told her about the invite and she said, "You an idiot to pass up that opportunity! At least get more information and find out what really is involved and required.  Maybe it won't be too expensive and we can make it work.  At least find out!" 

My jaw hit the floor.  I love that woman!  She is so supportive!  Perhaps she's paying me back for all those marathon weekends she does.  So I emailed Jack back asking for more info.  

Then I went for my swim.  My mind was so preoccupied with the Bering Straight crossing that I ended up not focusing and totally made an illegal traffic move.  Oops.  I looked before I went, but I totally ran a red light.  What the heck?!  I was really out of it.  I realized halfway through the intersection that I was completely breaking the law and snapped out of my dream like state.

When I got to the pool I was in the water at 2:30 pm and did:

4000 - 2 x 2000's free
2000 pull
4000 - 2 x 2000's free
600 - 2 x (200 IM, 100 free)
10,600 yards in 2:34

Today's swim was fantastic.  I REALLY love my Swimsense.  I can totally zone and not focus on keeping track of my total in my head, and think about my stroke mechanics among other things.  I can push off the wall and take a quick peek at my yardage to get my mind back into where I'm at in my workout.  

The first 2000 I was thinking about the Bering Straight, but the rest of the time I was thinking about how terribly behaved my scouts are.  I was getting really angry just thinking about the lack of respect those boys show.  My stroke rate picked up and I was going at a pretty good pace.  I'm at my whits end with those kids!  I KNOW I wasn't as out of control as these kids are at this age.  

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Where did it go?

I lost something, but I'm not worried, and I don't really want it back.  It's COLD SHOCK.

Josh, Goody and I get to witness sunsets like this out
at the Marina about every other time.  Magical.
I really need to get a heart rate monitor.  I'm dying of curiosity about how much my heart rate jumps when I get in.  My breathing doesn't feel all that elevated anymore, and it's about as painful as getting a shot in the arm.  You can feel it, but if you don't focus on it, it's not a big deal at all. 

Today's temp came to 35.8°F (2.1° C) and I did my normal shortened route of 250 yards to the other side of the marina at the turn and back.  Had some good conversation with Goody and Josh.  Fun stuff.

250 yards total in 3:32 

7 months to go

7 months until I get on a plane for England.  Can't wait!  This morning was much better than yesterday.

1000 free
1000 - 900 free, 100 breast
1000 - 800 free, 200 back
1000 - 700 pull, 300 free
1000 - 600 free, 400 kick with fins
1000 - 2 x 500's free on 7:30
1000 - 400 kick with fins, 600 free
1000 - 300 free, 700 pull
1000 - 200 IM easy, 800 free
1000 - 100 back, 900 free
900 - 9 x 100's free on 1:25 (banked :20!) Nice!
100 back easy

11,000 yards total in 3:05

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Active Recovery

A negative person would call today's workout a slacker workout, but I choose to be positive and call it active recovery.

Last night I was up later than normal due to obligations with Scouts.  But it was worth it cause Austin passed his Eagle board of review and that's one less thing I have to nag about!  Right on!

This morning I snoozed past the alarm way too much and wasn't in the water until 5:25am.  I got in and did:

2000 free nice and easy
2000 pull

My shoulder blades were stiff the whole time even though I tried to just relax them and do an exaggerated glide, pull, rotating on axis and a good bent elbow, etc...  Decided that its better to get in the water and do 4000 than to not come at all.  So I called it good and will focus on a super early bedtime and get in a decent 10+ tomorrow.

Also, it looks like I no longer work with Chris Haramoto with Antelope Island, but Jeremy Shaw.  He gave us permission to go with 15 swimmers for the Antelope Island to Black Rock Swim.  Yay!

4000 yards in 1:02

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Speeding it up a bit

Today was all free with some kicking.  I wanted to speed things up a bit, so I didn't do any sets longer than 1000.   All sets on a 1:30/100 yd base:

1000 free easy on 15:00 (14:56)
1000 - 2 x 500's free on 7:30 (@7:03)
1000 - 5 x 200's free on 3:00 (2:35-2:45)
1000 kick with fins

1000 - 2 x 500's free on 7:30 (@7:03)
1000 - 5 x 200's free on 3:00 (2:35-2:45)
1000 - 10 x 100's free on 1:30 (1:15-1:23)

1000 kick with fins

1000 - 5 x 200's free on 3:00 (2:35-2:45)
1000 - 10 x 100's free on 1:30 (1:15-1:23)
1000 - 20 x 50's free on :45

11,000 yards in 2:58
Interesting that the Swimsense watch has been perfect at counting up till now.  It was fine until I started doing the 50's.  Perhaps my stroke rate is too fast for it?  It messed up three times showing that I only did 25 yards when I obviously did 50.  I'm not too upset, because I rarely do 50's anyway.  
Felt strong the whole time and my shoulder and upper back felt great.  Had Jonas knead out my knots around my shoulder blades with the magic wand.  Man that thing works wonders.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Kicking off the new year right

It felt so good to sleep in until 7:30am.  Then I went over to SDRC and did:

20,000 - 10 x 2000's odd free, even pull 

in 4:58

I called Cathi on the way home and she was in a good mood!  She had a good morning with the kids and she said she'd have lunch waiting for me when I got home.  I had a huge sub sandwich waiting with an orange already peeled and sectioned.  What a sweetheart!  Fantastic day and the swim was wonderful.  

Josh opened up registration for the 8 mile event on New Years Eve at Midnight, and all 12 spots for the GSL Antelope Island to Black Rock Marathon swim filled up within 24 hours!  Wow, I thought it would take a few weeks, not one day.