Friday, January 2, 2015

New Year's Day Swim

My alarm went off at 6:00 yesterday, and I hit the snooze button several times as I contemplated whether it was worth it. Our masters swim club was hosting an epic New Year’s Day workout, and I had been excited to swim further than I ever had before. I didn’t really care about watching the ball drop this year, hitting the sack around 10:00. However, pre-midnight fireworks (why??) jolted me awake shortly thereafter, and I ended up watching the motherload hit at 12:00 from my window. It was New Year’s Eve… to be expected, and not a big deal. The blasts quieted down shortly thereafter… well, all except for one nutjob seemingly a stone’s throw from our house who kept at it until well past 1:00. I’m all for celebrating, but come on dude, take it inside!! Now, alarm wailing, I considered laying on the horn right outside this guy’s house before heading to the pool. However, I realized I didn’t have a solid suspect, and besides, there would be too many innocent casualties within earshot.

I always say that with swimming, 50% of the battle is getting in your car. This was no different, and although tired, driving through the darkness I was cautiously optimistic that I had made the right choice by crawling out of bed.

There were two workouts to choose from. One was 15 x 300, so 4500 yds, and the other 120 x 50, so 6000 yds. I swim 2x a week like clockwork, typically getting in ~2500 yds of intervals over an hour. I’m consistent, but have rarely really tested myself. Therefore, yesterday I decided to go big or go home. For collegiate & other competitive swimmers I’m sure 6000 yds is just another day at the office, but this would be my longest ever individual swim workout.

For me, everything was “on 60 seconds,” meaning you start every 60 sec. For example, if you come in at 50 sec, you get 10 sec rest before the next one. Come in at 52, you get 8 sec rest. A few elite swimmers did theirs on 50 sec and others on 55, and a giant screen used for meets kept track of everything depending on your pace. It was pretty cool.

Here was the workout, 3 times through:

10 x 50 free
10 x 50 kick w/fins
10 x 50 pull w/paddles

10 x 50 IM, mixing in all strokes however you wanted

1 minute rest then repeat

It was tough but doable, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. A good kind of hurt. Afterwards we had a smorgasbord of a brunch, and good times were had by all.

In Wisconsin I remember my masters team doing 100 x 100, something I eagerly passed on. And like I said, probably just another day at the office for competitive swimmers. However, for me it was a nice start to the year and a new high water mark (pun intended) in the pool.

Another thing I say about swimming?

It’s always worth it.

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