Thank goodness I don't have to start this post with a longwinded introduction. Since writing my last post, I have been to the pool for three swims! I had to cram them in three days in a row, which I didn't feel was ideal, but I knew I was going away to coach in Bergen, Norway over the weekend and wouldn't be able to swim. It is one of the great paradoxes of coaching that you are constantly around a pool but it is hardly ever appropriate for you to be swimming in it.
Tuesday, May 26th:
30x25 Freestyle, Pace 16
How it went: Success! I managed to crank out 30x25 at my pace in this one, and damn it felt good. I made 18 in a row to start the set, then rested and did 8, then finished with four. It felt really good to build up to this. On the other hand, I know I am going to progress fast at the outset because I am so "untrained". One thing I noticed about a set where I swam so much continuous was how hot my body got- I was sweating for 15-20 minutes after getting out of the water.
Wednesday, May 27th
8x20m breaststroke breakouts
30x25 breaststroke, pace 20
How it went: Man, breaststroke is hard. One observation I have is that when you are doing breaststroke your work to rest ratio can be a little off. You are naturally always going to be slower, so I set my time all the way up to :20 rest and pace :20. However, I still really struggled to get anything going. I was still only able to 14x25, with 8 in a row, then 4 and then 2. Everything felt hard- I got some lactic acid, I struggled to hold technique and my pace fell apart. I think that I may have to be really patient in breaststroke, and that also my flexibility is really holding me back at this point, so I need to correct that ASAP.
Thursday, May 28th
8x15m freestyle finishes
30x25 Freestyle, Pace 16
How it went: 30 in a row! Damn did that feel good. After Tuesday, I told myself I would force the pace up when I made 30 in a row, and now I suppose I will have to. It was really good to get into a rhythm and keep firing. The biggest challenge I had was that I was training in a crowded lap lane, where everyone else just wanted to swim continuously at a much slower pace. Invariably I was swimming around someone, or getting rammed in the back while I was resting, and I had to screw with my rest intervals both up and down to make sure I had space to swim. I didn't let it stress me out- these are the conditions that I GET to train under and I cannot control other people in the lane.
Looking forward: I know that in about three weeks I will be headed to the European Games in Baku. Because of various logistical crazyness, I will be there thirteen days for a five day swim meet. Supposedly there will be a pool at the Athletes Village where we will stay, but already I am preparing myself that training conditions could be rough or non-existent. We shall see!