Friday, April 24, 2015

What Doesn't Kill You...

Last week +Coach K informed me that my swim workouts needed to change…that I needed to be doing more endurance work in the pool. He sent me a couple of sample workouts both of which were 3,100y. UGH!

3,100y is at least 1,000y more per workout than I was doing (perhaps that is the reason for the change)… and while there are some 50’s in my new and improved workouts, most sets are 500’s, or 5 x 100’s with an insanely short rest in between so they may as well be a 500. You cannot rest on the wall or strike up a conversation with your lane-mate during a 500. In a 500, you have to swim! What the heck???
Positive Tracy would say that 20 laps are not that far and not that hard. Negative Tracy would say that Vineman is 8 x 500y! Positive Tracy would then add that the 8 x 500y in Vineman includes plenty of opportunity for walking ;-)
I started this week with the swim workouts for Monday and Wednesday and the promise of a Friday workout from Coach K. I checked my email first thing this morning and didn’t see a workout. Should I remind him? Nah! I’m just going to do my own thing's FRIDAY!!!

That was a great plan for a few hours…suffice it to say, he remembered to send me a workout…a nice long endurance based workout! After reviewing today's workout, I asked Coach K "If this is an endurance workout, what was Monday and Wednesday? LOL" 

His response..."What doesn't kill makes you stronger..."

Yeah, but it might make you puke in the pool! ;-)

Freak Show (aka My Swim Week in Review)

Michael~David Wine = Good Freak Show
24 Fitness Pool = Bad Freak Show
Since I knew I would be hard pressed to fit a 3,100y workout into the same time frame as a 2,000y workout, I decided to once again brave the waters of 24 Hour Fitness. This move would also free up some time in the evening with HS (who is currently under the weather...poor HS :-(


Monday afternoon I arrived at the gym around 4:30pm. There was only one other person in the pool. I had an entire lane to myself and no distractions. After 5pm things started to get busy and an older gentleman asked if he could share my lane. I agreed and instructed him to swim in the half next to the wall (I was there first so it was my call!).

He did a couple of laps of freestyle and then switched to backstroke…and when I say backstroke, I don’t mean the kind you normally see where each arm circles independently. No, he was doing the kind of backstroke where both arms go up at the same time and then swing wide underwater.  I had a couple of problems with this…
  1. He started swimming down the middle of the lane
  2. During his wide underwater stroke, he made contact with my leg!!! DO NOT TOUCH STRANGERS IN THE POOL!

He rested a bit, did a little more freestyle and then returned to his backstroke. This time however, I was prepared…as I swam past him, I started kicking like Jaws was behind me…I almost felt bad about doing it when I saw him climb out and sit on the edge of the pool…almost LOL

On top of the issue with my lane buddy, someone entered the shallow end with perfume or cologne that reeked like mosquito repellant. It was over powering, but managed to stay at one end of the pool. (Honestly, there is no shallow end in this pool…it’s all shallow).


OMG! If I wasn’t such a hard head, I would have left the gym the moment I walked into the pool area. It was packed. Both outside lanes had 2-3 people in them swimming/walking/bouncing. The center lane only had one person. I’m pretty sure his intensity was keeping the walkers out. I dropped my swim bag on the deck and tried to make eye contact with him so he would know I wanted to share the lane. He didn’t acknowledge me, but he seemed to move over, so at least I had a place to swim.

As I sat on the edge of the pool putting on my cap and goggles, some little, older guy darted into the pool, popped under the lane line and surfaced in my half of the lane. Since I was at the opposite end of the pool, I made the universal hand signal that says I’m swimming here. He didn’t seem to care. He then proceeded to start swimming…sort of. He dove under the water and started a painfully slow underwater breaststroke. In fact, it was at least 20 seconds before he resurfaced about  5-10y down the lane...I had begun to wonder if he was OK.

At this point he sort of asked about the lane (I really couldn't hear or understand him) and I said “No! I’m swimming here.” (You gotta be willing to fight for your space in the pool). He went back to the wall and said something to Mr. Swimmer, but Mr. Swimmer pushed off and just kept going. At this point, I just started swimming straight at the frog man... I guess that was enough for him because he moved over to a bouncing lane.

Since I was fired up from showing my lane domination skills I decided to do flip turns during my warm up. This lasted for all of 3 laps. The water in the pool was probably nearing the “unsafe for humans” range…it was cloudy and gross (and yes, I saw at least one bandage). Two of my three turns resulted in me pushing off against water and not the wall. The cloudy water along with my fogged up goggles was impairing my ability to judge the distance. Whatever…flip turns are overrated LOL

After my warm-up, I got into the meat of the workout. The first set was Ok, but the second set was guess what? A 500. Ok, I can do this. Correction, I can do this in a pool that does not feel like a hot tub. By the end of that 500, I was on the verge of vomiting (typically a feeling reserved for running in the heat). There was no way I was going to be able to complete the next sets without a little help. Rep #2 was done with the help of my fins and #3 was accomplished with fins and paddles. I had to do whatever it would take to get out of there.


TGIF! I went back to Tokay today.  +James  had posted on Facebook that he was swimming for 90 minutes today so I knew I had enough time to complete my workout. Even though the wind picked up and the temps dropped a bit, the cool water felt glorious! I was feeling so good that I did flip turns for the first 400 yards of my warm up. That was a first!

James decided to keep me company during my workout and swam next to me for most of the work out. This totally stresses me out...not as much as Coach John watching from the deck and then asking "What are you doing?" (I'm never sure if he mean what is my workout or if he's asking me to identify my stroke LOL)...anyway, having James cruising along next to me...seemingly effortless...drives me insane and make me want to push myself harder than I want to be pushed (maybe that's a good thing???).  Anyway, my extra effort started to make my calf and foot a bit twitchy, so I ditched the last 50y of my cool down and called it a day!

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