Thursday, November 17, 2011

Just What I Needed

Date: Thursday, November 17, 2011
Time: 4:40 p.m.
Location: Phoenix, AZ
221 days to Olympic Trials

Today's workout with Coley Stickels' senior-level group at Phoenix Swim Club was easier than I expected. All of his swimmers are racing this weekend, and he didn't want to overload them with a lot of work. We "only" did about 3,500 meters, and that was fine with me. I suppose I should have stayed in a little longer to do some extra work, but I'm not concerned. I needed a good recovery workout today, and that's what this was. None of the sets were physically challenging, but did have me, as usual, concentrating on various aspects of my strokes. Today did not have a breaststroke focus, which was fine.

Below is what we did for the main set:

300 on 5:15
100 pull/50 drill/50 swim/50 kick/50 swim

2x25 on :30
#1 free with seven strokes, #2 breast pull underwater with flutter kick

150 on 2:30
25 pull/25 kick/25 swim x2

200 on 3:00
50 pull/50 swim/50 kick/50 swim

2x25 on :30, same as above

2x75 on 1:20
25 pull/25 kick/25 swim

100 on 1:40
50 pull/25 kick/25 swim

2x 25 on :30, same as above

3x50 on :50
#1 fly/free, #2 back/free, #3 breast/free

I'm glad I swam this in the short course meters pool. The group was split into the short course yards part of the pool and the short course meters part of the pool, with no discernible reason why some were in SCM and some were in SCY. The first set we did was largely freestyle-based, and it involved a drill that has become very popular, but I have honestly never done before. I"ve heard it called the "bow drill," where you stop your freestyle arm recovery at halfway and hold it there for about eight kicks. I don't have the leg strength to balance my body at that part of the stroke! It was quite difficult for me to do that drill correctly. I'm sure my arm wasn't perfectly positioned on the drill, but no one corrected me.

The aches from working with JR yesterday lingered with me throughout the day. My office is in a retrofitted house, and there is a fireplace with a mantel. The corner of that mantel has become my favorite place for a quick back massage. I put my knotted muscle on the corner of the mantel, plant my feet and dig in. After a minute or so, I feel the knot going away. I had a few of those this afternoon, and though they are still there after swimming, the knots aren't as tight. I'm expecting to get some bodywork with Tod Miller after Thanksgiving, and he'll be able to work out the knots better than the corner of any fireplace mantel.

After today's workout, Coley suggested that I attend the USA Swimming Grand Prix in Austin, Texas, in mid-January, as well as the sectional meet in March. I do need to swim some long course meets before Trials, and I won't get that opportunity swimming in Masters until June. The only issue is that I won't shave for the meets, though I might rest a few days for sectionals. If I can get the time off from work, it might be fun to swim in those meets, especially Austin. I went to college there, and I miss that city dearly. I told Coley that if I were to go to the meet there, I might not want to come home!

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