Today’s Number of the Day: 53.
As in 53 degrees. Which was the air temperature when I jumped in the water this morning for practice. Yes, it was cold. Very cold. Though as my coach, Jeff King, would say: “It’s not cold, it’s wet.” Let’s just say, it’s getting a bit tougher to want to jump in the pool to start practice. Even Pat Sullivan had to count himself down before jumping in. I’m looking forward to the indoor pool … though I guess not the 4:30 practice times.
Today was the start of the second phase, which was mainly just increasing the workload in practice. I swam the most I ever have since I started with Curl-Burke Swim Club, though I still have a good mix of using my fins and paddles.
The practice started off with a warm-up of kick and swim, broken down like this:
Five 50s kick, 50 swim. (with fins, freestyle kick)
Four 50s kick, 50 swim. (with fins, butterfly kick on back)
Three 50s kick, 50 swim. (no fins, free)
Two 50s kick, 50 swim (no fins/fly-free kick)
50 kick, 50 swim.
Then we moved on to the set. Today it was broken down pretty simple. 300, 200, 100 swim with paddles/fins, fins only, no toys in order. Then 10 25s hard kick, no toys.
Then we went to 400, 300, 100 swim same breakdown with toys.
That means we did a total of 1400 swim, plus 250 kick, plus a warm up of 750 kick/250 swim. That puts a total swim of 1650 and a kick of 1000, or a grand total of 2650 meters. Not too shabby at all.
And you know what, it felt good afterward. Certainly, I was tired during the course of the workout. But that’s to be expected. I’m sure I’ll go back to being as sore as I was the first week or so of this whole project because in a sense I’m starting over. It’s time to start pushing myself again and seeing how well I respond.
At the very end of practice as I did my final 100, Jeff taped me to show me how I was looking when I was very tired. He said my right arm placement was poor, that I was dropping it down in the water instead of doing what this site tells you to do — reach for the wall. So I’ll take a look at the video and give you guys a chance to do so as well.
I’m uploading the videos to youtube now and will post them later today or tomorrow.
Keep in mind that Jeff told me to really try to extend my stroke and, early on, that’s all I was thinking about and I was trying to over-exaggerate it. So in my opinion, I look kinda silly in the first 25. And then it looks like I just decided to give up on kicking — probably because the legs were a bit dead after all that kicking in practice mixed with the still-lingering fatigue from soccer.
Be nice to me.
Jeff also recorded Pat doing a 50 so I could compare his stroke to my stroke, and I’ll throw that video up here as well, just so you guys can get a chance to watch that as well. I was hoping to create a split-screen effect, but my video-editing capabilities aren’t that great.
This is the first time I put video up of me swimming and it’s when I’m super tired so let’s try not to judge too harshly.
As for tomorrow, hopefully that number 53 goes up a little bit. More importantly, though, there will be a new Number of the Day that stands out: 3000. That’s the distance I’ll swim tomorrow for the first time, another benchmark in this project. I hope I can push through it no matter how tired I am, because I feel like it’s really going to help me start dropping some more time — and more importantly, make me a better swimmer.
Washington Post reporter Paul Tenorio will train with a swim club over the next few months and chronicle his journey as he attempts to transform from regular guy/sports reporter to competitive swimmer — everything from his waistline to his best times.