Sorry for not posting yesterday afternoon. I spent most of the day and evening working on an article that appeared today on the front page of the newspaper, which was a pretty cool moment for me.
Here’s the link to that story, which was about a crackdown on celebrations in high school football.
I’m going to combine this entry to include both days, just because there is some stuff I wanted to write about Tuesday’s practice … mostly that it was plain out, good, ol’ fashioned FUN.
After our workout, Jeff had us do a couple of weird things. First, he split the group in two and stood us at both ends the pool spread out along the deck. We were to race to the other end of the pool — but all get out of the pool in the same lane.
The race started out pretty simply, but by the second time people were grabbing onto opponents and yanking teammates out of the water to ensure victory — which was to my team, and ended with an uproar of cheering and laughter. I felt like a 12-year old kid, no joke … and it was AWESOME!
“Back in the day my swim team used to warm-up like that,” Jeff told us. “We were a popular bunch.”
After those races, we all headed to the diving well of the pool and looked across the 50 meters in front of us, a number of lane ropes between us and the other side of the pool.
Jeff told us we were going to race to the other side, going under or over the ropes — however we wanted, he didn’t care.
I made the mistake of taking a running dive start about a second behind another swimmer, Tucker, and ended up getting a foot to the face that knocked my goggles off and ended my chance of winning almost immediately. Brian Heilbronner won, but cheated by jumping out of the pool and running halfway down the deck and then jumping back in without Jeff noticing.
I think it was a brilliant idea, and really he stole my initial plan. Jeff never said we had to swim. He just said get to the other side.
It was a pretty awesome and fun way to end practice, which had gone well with a series of different types of sets that focused on kicking and sprinting. Everyone was in a great mood after practice and some of the guys were still talking about it today in the locker room.
I wonder if we’ll have any other crazy endings to practice this week … perhaps water polo? Sharks and minnows?
Today’s practice started to get us into meet-mode. It was a lot of 25s that mixed things up between breath control, staying long and smooth and sprinting. I worked on some starts (and was disappointed in how crappy they were today; I just kept going in too deep) and mostly focused on breathing to both sides.
I’m hoping to improve at the home pool this weekend, and with a decent-sized family crowd the pressure is there a bit more.
I’m also debating whether to do the whole shaving thing, as many people are encouraging since it’s the last “swimming experience” I’ve really yet to conquer and write about. I dunno. We’ll see.
I guess I’ll have to make the decision tomorrow … but really? Sharing that with everyone? I dunno, man. I just don’t know. It’ll take some convincing.
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.