|The Norse God of Warriors knows how to make a suit.|
It is July 15 and I am at the first day of the Mizzou Sectional. My only athlete who was scheduled to swim today had to scratch so I ended up being the only race for my team. I have hardly been able to fit in much swimming, only getting in four very short swims since June 24th. I had absolutely no reason to expect to swim well, but lately I have the mindset to never back out. I have surprised myself enough times that it is always worth racing to see what may happen. I shaved legs today but left the hair on my face, chest, and belly, which is a pretty significant furry layer at this age. I may shave more for Futures in West Lafayette but I am not sure.
After warm ups, I decided it was time to look into finding a deal on a tech suit. I caught the TYR rep on deck and told her about my AP-12's being stolen. I was hoping she had one to sell for cheap since they are rumored to be discontinued. We talked a little about potentially signing my team with TYR since we have never committed to a brand, and then she offered to let me try on the Avictor. HELL YEAH!
I warmed up a little more in the suit and then raced the prelim 200 breast with it. In my opinion, it is a fantastic suit. So many tech suits catch water at the waist and are hard to tie tight enough. That was one of the things I loved about the AP-12: the waist never caught water, even without the high waist model. The Avictor had a better string that didn't slip as much when trying to get it tight, and also had rubber at the waist which is something that has become more common in tech that the AP-12 didn't have. The fabric on the Avictor also seemed to be a lot thinner but it didn't feel like they sacrificed any strength.
The fit on the Avictor was the same, but the compression was very different. I have tried a lot of suits, and there are many varying degrees of compression across the thighs and hips on the market. The Avictor had excellent compression at the hips but I worried that it felt less tight at the lower thighs than what I was used to. After racing the 200 breast though, I can understand why they changed the design. My kick felt much more free. It was like the best of both worlds, with effective stability and compression, but the freedom of movement that allowed me to get the most from my range of motion. I felt like my kick was less restricted and more efficient than with other compression suits I have tried.
My race went really well. Even after the huge roadblock in my training this summer I was able to drop two more seconds from my best time with a 2:29.9. Even better, my last 50 was by far the best split I have turned in at 38.8. I had much less fade today than ever. As a matter of fact, the entire amount of time I improved over last summer's shave meet is covered by the difference in that last split. It is kind of mind-blowing when you consider that I was trying my best to overcome what should have been a lack of fitness due to my crazy schedule over the last three weeks.
|These might be my best race splits ever for the LCM 200 breast.|
The best part: I met one of my short term goals. The time I turned in officially lands me on the FINA Masters all-time top ten list for my age group. Take a look here... 2:29.94 lands me at the 8th fastest in history for age 40-44. Not bad for a guy who is just squeezing in short workouts in on the fly and didn't bother to shave anything higher than the knees. I turn 41 next week so I am really anxious to see if I can carve out enough training time over the next three years to move up on that list. I wish I could get off work to go to Masters Nats!