Wednesday, July 29, 2009

How Cute Is This?

A cool company (Paper Culture) I just discovered not only has eco-friendly stationary but will actually address and mail your announcements, invitations, whatever FOR FREE. They also have the ultimate stationary for swimmers. I just had to pass this on. You can get this print in thank you cards (which is what I have ordered), and other "life event" stationary too, but they display it as a "moving for schools" announcement. Clever.

And...this morning I felt like one of these fish: the red fish. I was huffing and puffing and pumping blood to my face like crazy by swimming with a big huge parachute (okay, a T-shirt) attached to me. That's right, it was the dreaded drag day. Far from including Tim dressing up in a prom gown and tiara, which would have been entertaining, drag day means we get to swim in our shorts or T-shirts. This morning, a T-shirt made itself available to me at the front door (too much disclosure on the state of my housekeeping, I know).

*warmup: 200 free, 100 stroke, 50 kick with no drag
repeat 2x

add drag for:

*250 free, then 200 done with one breast stroke pull down and two fly strokes off each wall
*250 free, then 150 done with one breast stroke pull down and two fly strokes off each wall
*250 free, then 100 done with one breast stroke pull down and two fly strokes off each wall
*250 free, then 50 done with one breast stroke pull down and two fly strokes off each wall

remove drag for:

*5 x 100's free descending 1-3, hold 3-5
*5 x 50's free fastest average possible

Monday, July 27, 2009


Nancy and I headed out yesterday to do the 2.4 mile race at Catfish. It was an amazing day, beautiful water, and horrible organization! First we waited in line for a bus that none of the workers knew anything about (when would it come? would it come at all?). When the line got longer and the bus didn't come, we asked if we could simply walk to the reservoir. They had no idea whether we could or in which direction to send us. The first race time approached and no bus. Then a bus came, but couldn't fit everyone on it. Swimmers began to get nervous, but I was impressed with how calm most people stayed. Good thing this was a swim and not a triathlon :).

Once we finally got a bus, the lines at the race were equally long to wait through. But, we saw Scott, so that was fun. After we set up our stuff on the ledge overlooking the 1.2 mile race that was beginning, we found Stephanie and Sue as well. The sun came out, the lines were forgotten, we had small fans and Deanna to cheer us on, and our swim was a blast. Stephanie, Scott and I ended up drafting off one another without planning to, most of the race, and we all crossed the finish line together. Nancy was busy winning the entire freaking race (first woman out of the water) up ahead (I have GOT to learn not to invite faster swimmers than myself to come race with me :).

We waited for the award ceremony, thinking Nancy would get a great prize, and were disappointed in two ways. First, although they had separated the swim divisions by wetsuit and non-wetsuit (none of us wore one...the water had ZERO chill!), they combined the divisions for placing and prizes. UNfair (especially for me since that knocked me off the podium). It also kicked Stephanie out of first place in her age group, which was a bummer (she was first for non-wetsuits). Second, the prizes were LAME. A box of Gu?????? Are you kidding me????? There was a shirt (which they forgot to give Nancy entirely in her prize bag) but it was printed with a company name, no Catfish Swim verbiage or anything. Clearly a company giveaway.

Despite all that - the swim was phenomenally fun and sunny and enjoyable and CLOSE BY, so I suppose it was well worth it. A wonderful Sunday morning all around. Now, my arm is sore from battling at the mass start so I'm home writing instead of swimming. Tomorrow the pool!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Long Stuff

Uh oh. I've been swimming M, W, F, Sat lately and the only day lately that seems to be oriented toward my love of long sets is Saturday. This is no bueno for my upcoming 2.4 mile swim at Catfish this Sunday. I didn't really think about it until today, when we had a nice long set of sets. Can you say "arms that feel like lead pipes?" I do not feel lithe. Oh well, I'll have to chug through it, and perhaps starting next week I will switch my days to Mon, Tues, Thurs, Sat. Stay tuned, I know you can't wait to hear how that decision goes.


*warmup: 600 straight free. ahhhh.

*800: switch leads at the 100, first 50 fast, second 50 moderate
*600: switch leads at the 200, first 100 fast, second 100 moderate
*400: no lead switch, do second 200 fast

*3 x 300's by 100: first 100 75 fast, second 100 50 fast, third 100 25 fast

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Lines are Clear and Straight.

I'm reading Dara Torres' book because I'm staging a comeback. Okay so I have nothing to come back to, but I'm reading the book anyway. While Dara seems to be an annoying person I would not want to be friends with (type A, obsessed with winning everything, self-centered, etc. etc.), I'm giving that to her as her right since she's such a bad ass. I figure most world-class athletes and performers have to be incredibly cocky and type-A and obsessed to get themselves to where they are, so there.

Long story short, lots of the book is unrelateable to me. But I love her descriptions of being in the water and of her relationship with the water. I am really feeling her in these passages, she seems to sum up my feelings exactly, and I wanted to share them:

"I also remembered the straightforward nature of life in the pool. You know exactly where you're going. It's easy to state your goals. Tasks and obligations are well-defined. Life outside the water is so maddeningly full of complexity and nuance. I liked being back in the pool. The lines are clear and straight."

"Swim practice has a reputation for being boring. I'm not going to tell you that's wrong, but swimming can be interesting, too. Working out in the water shows you the contents of your own mind. It teaches you to rein in your thoughts and come back to the present so you can focus on the small details in the pool--how you move your body, the shape of your hand as it moves under your torso, the position of your mouth when you take a breath. If your mind is in the right place in practice, you focus only on your body in the moment."

And THAT is what has gotten me through so many rough weeks!

So, on to today's main sets (can't remember the warm-up and other, was thinking of my body in the moment :):

add fins for:

*2 x 100 free; 50 fly
repeat 5 times

fin option for:

*2 x 50 free; 25 fly
repeat 5 times

Monday, July 13, 2009


Saturday morning I walked through the freshly bleached locker room and promptly got a vision-impairing migraine like I haven't had in at least five years. Quite a bummer, but although I couldn't see the backstroke flags in their entirety, or Tim's face as he was explaining the set for that matter, I remembered that the doctors said exercise and caffeine were things that would help the headache not come on so strong. Never had I gotten a migraine at the start of a workout, so this was my chance.

I could see again after the first set, and while I spent most of the day (started to feel better around noon) lying on the couch feeling that nauseous migraine feeling, I do believe it was one of the most mild migraines I've ever had. Thus, I have strengthened my "Swimming cures everything" hypothesis that I plan to keep proving my whole life long.

Of course, I didn't get the energy on Saturday to write out that workout, so here is today's:

*warmup: 200, 150, 100, 50 free, each followed by 50 stroke

add paddles for:

*100 DPS, 200 free build by 100
*100 DPS, 400 free build by 200
*100 DPS, 600 free build by 200
*100 DPS, 400 free build by 200
*100 DPS, 200 free build by 100

remove paddles for:
300 free; 25 DPS, 25 swim, 25 DPS, 50 swim, so on
250 done as 50 back DPS, 50 free, 50 back DPS, 100 free

Monday, July 6, 2009

Funniest thing I've seen in a while

It's relevant, because there is a swim team reference.

So, today:

*warmup: 250, 200, 150, 100, 50 last 50 of each stroke other than free

*200, 150, 100 (200 fast)
*200, 150, 100 (150 fast)
*200, 150, 100 (100 fast)
*200, 150, 100 (all fast)

*75, 50, 25 fast free
repeat 4 times