Saturday, March 30, 2013

An Affair to Remember

It is not unusual for master's swimmers to have one or more "swim spouses". The swim spouse is your go-to person for swimming, and you know their strengths and weaknesses and they yours. The beauty of the swim spouse is that there is nothing hidden from the full-time land spouse/partner. In fact, the land spouse sometimes gets tired of the constant chatter about sets, the incessant texting, and the drama that often comes with master's swimming. But they know it comes with the territory and are tolerant if not amused. Slightly less common is for a swimmer to have an "affair" with another teammate's swim spouse, but that is exactly what happened today. Greg, who is training for his ice swim next weekend, is the swim spouse of E2, my friend and teammate who completed her ice swim in 2012. But this morning E2 was not there at 7:30 and there was Greg, swimming alone, and there I was, sitting on the pool deck alone. As the Steven Stills song so eloquently states, "swim with the one you're with" and that is what I did. E2 did catch us in the act an hour later and had no problem with loaning her spouse out for the morning. A great set, and after being out of the water for a week it felt good to swim with someone.

Twice thru:
2 x 200 on 3:00
4 x 100 on 1:30
8 x 50 on :60
400 swim (pull) on 6:00
400 swim on 6:00 (once)
4 x 100 descend on 1:35

Friday, March 22, 2013

March Madness

We are halfway through the two craziest days of March Madness, and one of us (Elaine!) actually picked Harvard to advance. In doing so, she is one of only 6% of the population that made this wise choice. Our workout was a bit of a basketball-themed swim, as we went for three (hundreds), had a layup up on the first part of the 200, and launched the 100s at the buzzer. I will definitely add this to my favorites. And as for my bracket, there is only one team I care about advancing: Go Bucks!

200 warm up:

1st set:
2 x 50 free :50  
 2 x 25 fly  :30  
100 free   1:30
2 x 50 BR  :60  
2 x 25 fly  :30 
100 free  1:30
2 x 50 back on :60  
2 x 25 fly  :30  
100 free  1:30
2 x 50 fly  :60 
2 x 25 choice :30 
100 free   1:30
Main Set:
3 times thru:
1 x 300 free  pull: hypoxic by 50  [3, 5, 7] on 4:30
200 free negative split on 3:00
100 Free fast on  1:20
1 x 50 wicked ez on 1:20

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Literally ridiculous

Sometimes I am overly attuned to grammar and language usage, so I amusingly roll my eyes when people use terms like irregardless or phrases like somewhat unique. If you are laughing with me, read on, if not, skip directly to the workout. My newest obsession with language is the more frequent inappropriate use of the word “literally”, as in “I literally blew up during that swim workout”. If you actually did blow up that would be bad – you would die, the pool would get closed for weeks, and it would be on the news. Everyone knows what you are talking about because we have all been there (blowing up during a workout, figuratively speaking). But the truth is I have heard this word being used (not at master's of course!) of late as a throwaway exaggerator, as in “my blood was literally boiling when I heard that”. Literally means actually, and I actually do not want to see boiling blood. What’s my point here? I guess it is a suggestion for us to stick with the old tried and true figurative descriptors like “I totally bonked” or “we just swam the English Channel in that workout today”. Unless, of course, you literally did swim the English Channel, in which case you can ignore all of this.

200 warmup
6 x 25 odds free, evens stroke
6 x 50 count strokes free :55
4 x 75 IM order on 1:30
6 x 250 going:
odds: 100 easy, 50 stroke, 100 fast on 3:50
evens 100 on 1;30, 50 stroke on :55, 100 fast on 1:20
6 x 150 going:
1-3 pull on 2:20
4-6 going 50 free on :50, 50 stroke on :60, 50 fast on :40
50 easy
200 free pace on 3:00
200 pull on 3:00
200 IM/choice

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

If I knew you were coming...

Swimming a distance set well is a little like baking a birthday cake, which is a perfect analogy for today because it is Hubbard's birthday! Much like swimming, baking is all about pacing. Upon reading the cake recipe, you would probably not blast through the supermarket doing a wheelie grabbing things off shelves, then race home to throw everything in the bowl. You would take your time, knowing that this is just the first part of a process. You would probably not stir the ingredients so vigorously that your arm hurt, causing you to skimp on the most important part: the oven. For this final part, you really want the temperature and time to be just right so that you do not burn the cake. The same goes for a distance set, like the one we did today. And Bill gives us the recipe in very clear language. When the first part of the main set (which is well before 7am, I might add) is 1000 and he says "get your 500 split" you pretty much know this is just the beginning of a long set. And if you paced yourself well, the last part will be like the perfect chocolate cake with white icing (supermarket icing, not the fancy stuff), and it will definitely not be burned. Happy birthday to Hubbard, whose cake came out very well today.

200 warmup
4 x 150
odds: free 25 drill - 25 swim
evens:stroke 25 drill - 25 swim
4 x 100
odds:  free working on elbow pop
evens:  IM with legal turns
1 x 1000 free
Long swim
* watch your 200 splits
* get your 500 time
1 x 1000 again... same as above.
1 x 500 faster than 500 split
6 x 25 on :30
100 free

Monday, March 11, 2013

Daylight Savings Fail

Daylight Savings Time (DST) was initially created during World War I to save energy and resources, according to the internet (which is 100% true all the time). Growing up in Ohio I thought it had something to do with farmers and kids not going to school in the dark, but that is not what the internet says. Apparently traffic accidents and crime both go down with more daylight. But this morning I was not feeling it at all. I had to be "encouraged" to get to the pool, and as I stumbled into my car and toward the pool I sincerely worried that I may fall asleep at the wheel for the first time. DST most negatively impacts morning swimmers, in my opinion, and there were some droopy eyes today. A belated birthday to Carmen and Bob, whose birthdays were yesterday. Somehow BB did not make it to the pool today, and I am wondering if it was the 50 x 200s on Saturday or the margaritas (or both) that did him in.

6 x 75
going: 50 free -- 25 stroke
6 x 50 all drill
6 x 25 choice
1-3 on : 25
4-6 on :20
5 x 200 free on 3:00
16 x 25's on:30
odds: free build (slow to fast)
even: backstroke use starting block

twice thru  (ABC, ABC)
2 x 25 free fast on :20
50 cruise on :50
2 x 75 free fast on :60
100 cruise on 1:45
25 cruise on :30
2 x 50 free fast on :35
75 cruise on 1:15
2 x 100 free fast on 1:15
1 x 50 ez on 1:15

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Harsh Return

Returning to practice after a week away is always rough, but a number of little things added up to form a big can of harshness this morning. For one, I flew in from the west coast just last night, so when the alarm went off at 5:30am it was really 2:30am. Then add the snowstorm and slippery roads, which were a far cry from the rolling hills of northern California, and my new reality set in. But what was really jarring was when the TSA agent at SFO needed to pat down my "abdomen area" after I went through the regular screening. Imagine the look of surprise on her face when all she found was me. Yep, I had that good of a time that a federal agent thought I was packing. Which I was, but it's called wine and cheese, and it is not easily detected by a body scanner. We were coach-less this morning, but still managed a decent workout.

400 warmup
10 x 50 going
1-4 on :60
5-7 on :55
8-9 on :45
10 x 100 going:
odds free on 1:25
evens IM on 1:50
5 x 200
1-2 on 3:00
3-4 on 2:45
5 fast
8 x 75
odds on :60
evens on 1:20