Thursday, October 29, 2015

Splish Splash........

"I was takin' a bath down about a Saturday night (yeah!) a rub dub. Just relaxin' in the tub. Thinking' everything was all right..........."  Good Golly,  Miss Molly was a-even there too! A-well-a....splish splash I forgot about the bath I went and put my dancin' shoes on....yea!" 

- Who sang that song?  I thought it was Chuck Berry, but of course I am terrible at Trivia, so I put the answer at the bottom of the entry. 

That song is made for dancing, it's a good workout if you give it a go.

Friday's practice is courtesy of my swim mates from TX (SAD) San Antonio Dolphins. This workout from from either Fred or Beau. Thanks guys! 

Freaky Frightening Fast Friday Morning:  


8 x 50 = 25, 1 breath / 25 build @ :55

Set - 6 times thru (choose interval and stay on it straight thru)
100 build to 85-90% @ 1:30/40/45/50/2'
75 fast @ 1'/1:05/1:10/1:15
50 recover @ 1'/1:10
25 fast "30

Pull 8 x 100 @ 1-4 @ 1:15/1:20,   5-8@ 1:10/15

WD 4 x 100 @ 1:30

Happy Laps and Happy Halloween!!

- Bobby Darin - 1958

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Tropical Splash

Beautiful Siesta Key 

Before I get into the race report for - I need to catch up on a few practice sessions.....

Tuesday 10/13 - SCY @ FGCU

300 S/ 300 P/ 200 Back

12 x 75 (P/S/K by 75) Jim Anderson special 

20 x 50 
1-5  @ :55
6-10 @ :50
11 - 15 @ :45
16 - 20 @ :40

3 x 500 paddles /snorkel

100 cool

Wednesday 10/14

500 Loose

4 x 75 fly/back/breast @ 1:30

3 rounds
100 Fast Kick @ 1:10
100 IM
2 x 100 free (#1fast/#2ez) @ 1:30

3 rounds
2 x 200 @ 3'/3:30
2 x 50 #1 fly/back, #2 back/breast @ 1'
100 breast/free by 25 @ 1:45

100 cool

Friday 10/16

Kick Set:
4 x 50 Fast @ 1:10
1 x 50 EZ @ 1:15 
3 x 50 Fast @ 1:05
1 x 50 Ez @ 1:15
2 x 50 Fast @ 1'
2 x 150 smooth
3 x 50 Fast @ 1'
2 x 150 smooth
2 x 50 Fast @ :55
2 x 150 smooth
1 x 50 Fast @ :50
4 x 100 steady @ 1:30
4 x 25 Sprint @ :30
3 x 100 pull @ 1:30
4 x 25 Sprint @ :40
2 x 100 snorkel @ 1:30
4 x 25 Sprint @ :45 
200 cool

Saturday 10/17 - LCM @ FGCU

Yoga - 20 minutes
Warm - 800 choice or 200S/200P/200K/200FRIM
Preset - 8 x 50 (odds breakout/evens build speed)
Main x 2
300 Pace
3 x 100 stroke/swim by 50
200 Pace
2 x 100 IM
2 x 300 pull with snorkel
200 cool

Monday 10/19

300 swim
300 IM

12 x 50 fins K/S by 25@ 1'
12 x 50 free/drill by 25, free/swim by 25, IM order/swim by 25 (repeat 4x)

5 x 100 @ 1:40
5 x 100 @ 1:30
5 x 100 IM @ 1:45
4 x 75 (25 Fast/50 EZ, 50 Fast/25ez, 75 fast, 75 breathe very 3)

200 cool

Tuesday 10/20

500 swim
300 pull
200 kick

9 x 50 descend 1>3 @ 1'

6 x 150
300 snorkel
4 x 150 pull
200 snorkel

200 cool

Wednesday 10/21 (didn't swim this, but coached the 5 age groupers that attended practice)  Setting up the pool is a process as well as closing up, and I was late to practice. 

400 swim
200 Drill FRIM

4 x 200 @ 3/3:15/3:30
4 x 100 
# 1 25 kick/75 swim
#2 50 kick/50 swim
#3 75 kick/25 swim
#4 100 kick

4 x 200 Pull @ 2:45/3:00/3:15
4 x 100
#1 kick
#1 75k/25s
#2 50k/50s
#3 25k/75s

2 x 100 (drill/swim/scull/swim by 25) 

Thursday 10/22 - EZ day

500 Loose
10 x 50 (drill/swim) @ 1'
10 x 50 (back/swim) @ :55
10 x 50 pull @ :50
10 x 50 snorkel and paddles @ ;45
10 x 50 odds kick/evens scull

Fun Friday 10/23
I think this was a great practice to work on speed!  I did the main set only twice since I wanted to save a little energy for the 5K the next day. The kids did really well. 

600 (50 Free / 50 Back)


16 x 25
Fast/Ez/Build/Break out (4 cycles)

Main x 4
*Stroke option on #2 , #4
4 x 50 Fast @ 1'
100 EZ @ 1:45
2 x 50 Sprint @ :45
150 EZ @ 2:30 + 15 sec. to friendly top - repeat

3 x 200 Pull (breath 3/5/7/9 by 25)

200 warm down

The Sarasota Sharks put on a first class event!  I registered for the  5K. The last 5K I swam was a race in Guam where I recall the tide being so low in Tumon Bay that our stomachs almost touched the bottom of the ocean. 

I drove up N. to Siesta Key after work on Friday.  It's really close enough to drive up that morning, but I wanted the pleasure of waking up near the beach. The hotel I stayed in was a dive, but the bed was comfortable and the room was quite. The place is located across the street from the beach and only 1 mile from the main parking lot and start/finish area at Siesta Beach. 

Siesta Key Beach Resort was the name of the place. There were plenty of little cafe's or dive bars to get dinner, but I was fortunate enough to have visited a natural food place on Friday during my lunch break, called Mother Earth, and picked up homemade Kale salad, and Gluten free Lasagna. It was delicious!  I was very happy to have that for dinner, as opposed to going to a restaurant.  

If you read the reviews about this hotel, you will see that the rooms need updating and maybe the staff was not nice. Okay - the staff was very pleasant!  Sure the floors were a little gross, but the bed was a king which barely fit in the room, but it was very comfortable. This room was a like a luxury suite compared to the room I stayed in on Fukua island in Japan, where we needed to have a second room just to keep the bike!    In any event, as I was gathering my things at the car, a young man came up to me and asked me if I had been to my room?  "No, I have not." "Oh, do you need any help?"  "No," I replied, "but thank you."  Turns out, I was in the room that notoriously does not open with ease.  I had three key cards, and could not get any of them to work, so I went to the front office, to ask for help. The nice young man followed me to my room and demonstrated how to open the door. It's not rocket science, but in this case it did take some finesse. After about 10 minutes I was in the room. God forbid that I leave the room, I might not get back in.  

I curled up in bed with my iPad and watched my favorite show - Longmire, till about 9:45pm.  

I woke up refreshed, but was feeling fairly tight in my arms and back. After eating the lovely oatmeal that I brought,  I stepped outside to stretch with a little yoga warm up. As I was practicing my downward dog poses, I glanced over to my left and there was a girl looking out the window at me and waving to me like a long lost friend. A few minutes later she walked by me, and said, ""You look like you are in my age group, 40-45." "No, I am 51."  I replied. I finished up my yoga, and gathered my things in preparation to walk to the start. I asked the two girls if they were walking to the start and they replied yes. Great, I had company. Before heading out I took a nice hot shower to loosen up.

Their names were Beth and Cindy, and they were from Englewood. Cindy was swimming the 5K and Beth was just here along for the ride I suppose.  
The early walk down the beach with my two new friends, Beth and Cindy from hotel was a good warm up. About 10 minutes into the walk, Beth was getting a bit nervous about the distance, but I was confident that we only needed to go 1 mile.  We arrived at the pavilion and race check-in site with plenty of time to pick up our shirt, timing chip,  and get our numbers drawn onto our arms, otherwise commonly referred to as; body marking.  It was nice to see my swim mates from T2 and the GCST crew.  Before the mandatory pre-race meeting I took that time to put on my razor racing suit. I felt like wearing the official race suit rather than my regular training suit. It may not have made much of a difference, but it does feel better to wear it.

Coach Sam and his boys

After the pre-race meeting, I walked down to the water where the  the GCST team tent was set up and used that as home base for my belongings.  Before the start, I enjoyed being in the group photos taken with the different swimming friends I have made since moving to FL.   

This event offered three distances, 1K, 2.5K, 5K.  The 1K start was on the other end of the beach, because their course is a point to point. The 2.5K and 5K was a looped course. The 2.5K started 5 minutes ahead of the 5K ers. While waiting for the gun to go off, I wanted to make sure I knew what to look for when navigating between the buoys, so I asked Ed, since he was the expert with this particular course conditions, plus he swam it the day before. Ed told me to look for the building next to the lower trees and go just to the right of it. Don’t head toward the really tall trees, because that will pull you too far off course. That tip worked out really well for me, if I could not spot a buoy.

It was a beach start, so it was a run into the water at the sound of the horn. I started up front and a little to the far left of the crowd. That positioning seemed to work well, because it lined me up with the buoys.  The course was a rectangle. Since I was swimming the 5K, we needed to swim 2 loops. The conditions were perfect, except for the sun in your eyes after making the first left turn, which also put us in the choppy waters. The chop on the second loop was ridiculous. I had to breathe only to my left to avoid swallowing the entire ocean. When I attempted to spot a building or buoy, the water would smack me in the face, so I had to be prepared for that and avoid swallowing water.   

I love swimming open water events, but I don’t like the little things that live in the water. I read about the occurrence of sea lice from another blogger who did this race last year or a few years ago.  I guess I ignored the possibility of encountering such a thing.  Much to my dismay, I should have been more attentive, and put that safe sea lotion that my friend offered me on my chest and not just my arms.  It happened in the deep and rougher water on the first loop when I felt a swarm of these little things go inside my suit from the top. Ewww! I could feel them, and they were not stinging too much, I just kept my arms and body moving and thought of something else. Then, after the second left turn, we swam through a school of fish type creations and we were touching them with our hands! Double Ewww!  

I was pleased to know that I was navigating pretty nicely due to the fact that I was swimming next to the 3 yellow buoys that were set out between the big red turn buoys. Sometimes making a turn with a lot of swimmers, would be cumbersome because I would lose my place or someone might crawl over me.  My pace felt pretty good, and found a few swimmers that we were going the same pace, so sometimes I’d draft a bit, and sometime I would not. If I happen to touch this one guys feet, he would kick really really hard to get me away. I don’t think he enjoyed me drafting behind him. oh well, it’s all in the strategy. There was a time that my toes cramped on the first lap and when that happened, I moved them around and tried to kick more to activate the muscles better.  

On the final home stretch in the calmer waters close to the beach,  I was trying to hold a good pace, and kick a little harder to maintain better speed. I was still with the same few that have been with me for most of the swim.  The four of us came around the last turn buoy together which put us in formation for the final push to take us to the beach finish.  I was on the far left, and the other three were to my right. I am pretty sure the male swimmer was to my immediate right, then there were 2 girls next to him. I put my head down and tried to make one good final sprint to shore. As soon as my hand touched sand, I stood up, and I saw two people already standing. Darn, they must have been 1 or 2 strokes ahead of me. I stood up and attempted to race to the finish line, but it was not much of a run, it was more of a drunken stumble that took me by complete surprise. The hip is not the same without power. The prosthesis is fine, but it’s not made for jogging on sand to the finish line after swimming for over an hour. I practically fell on my face! LOL!   As I stumbled up the beach and across the finish line, a spectator yelled, ‘3rd. female!”   Wow, that’s cool, I wonder who those two females are that finished seconds in front of me are?  

I later approached one of the females that finished ahead of me and we talked a bit. I found out her name was Tracy Grilli!  She is a membership services coordinator for USMS, staff liason for USMS rule book, circulation manager for Swimmer magazine along with many other hats that she wears. She is from up North (NH and MA),and has a home in Sarasota. It was an honor to have met her in person.

Afterwards, I rinsed off and hitched a ride back to hotel from Tracy and her husband. I showered up and drove back to the park for food and awards. I usually don’t hang around for awards, but I honestly thought they were going to recognize that top #1-3 overall finishers. Unfortunately, they didn’t do it that way. Only overall finisher, and top three in age group.  Of few of the other swimmers I knew won medals in their age group as well!

After it was all said and done, I was pretty amped up and in a great mood!  I had a short drive (1 hour or so) home, and could celebrate a successful finish with Russ.  As we were eating lunch, I noticed I was itching in my chest, so when I looked in the mirror and noticed all the red bumps on my chest and flank I figured the sea lice did their job. Good thing I didn’t have a bad reaction. Not sure I’d want to do that race again, simply because of those little nasty jellyfish, however, it was well organized, was a good challenge, and the venue is known as the  #1 beach in USA! #siestakey.

My final time was 1:18.54. It was an extremely close finish between #1 and #2. Their times were:  1:18.46 and 1:18.48 respectively.

Tracy and I with our medals.

SWFL Open water regulars

Monday 10/26 Practice was with one age grouper, who is pretty quick and a very talented swimmer. I was Soooo tired, I felt like I had run a marathon! 

500 loose
4 x 50 (fist drill/swim by 25 @ 1')

Main x 2
4 x 100 @ 1:30 , second round on 1:25
200 P @ 3'
4 x 50 kick @ 1'

Main x 2
3 x 100 @ 1:20 / 2nd. round IM @ 1:45
150 P @ 2'
4 x 75 odds fast/evens ez @ 1:15

200 cool

Tuesday 10/29 - Garage Yoga

Wonderful Wednesday 10/28
300 swim/300 FRIM/200 kick

6 x 50 @ odds kick, evens fast/ez by 25
Main #1
200 free
2 x 100 (fly/free by 25)
200 free
2 x 100 (back/free by 50)
200 free
2 x 100 (75 breast/25free)
200 free
2 x 100IM
Main #2
300 pull
200 IM
100 pull
200 IM
300 pull
warm down 200

Full Moon 5AM

Monday, October 12, 2015

Home pool finally done

It's been 3.5 - 4 long months, but our pool is finally completed. We filled it up Saturday - Sunday. Not looking forward to the next water bill!  Next thing left is to balance chemicals etc. 

The screen went up last week

Sunday afternoon the water was almost to the tiles

Spa is waiting for her turn to get wet!

Monday 10/5 swim practice was rained out. No one showed up and I was not going to swim alone in the rain. 

Tuesday - Sunday I stayed in Naples with my mom while Russ and dad did a golf trip to Myrtle Beach.  Two retired guys making the most of their golf adventures. Must be nice!

Tuesday - Thursday I trained with the San Carlos group and Saturday I coached a practice at FGCU.  This morning there was a good turnout at N. Ft. is how the week looked.

Tuesday - Sam's practice 
1 x 500 free
Main - 2 xs
1 x 200 @ 3:30 (or 250)
3 x 100 @ 1:45 IM
3 x 100 free @ 1:30 (snorkel)
1 x 200 IM @ 4'

Main - 2x
4 x 75 free @ 1:15
4 x 25 kick @ :40
4 x 75 (stroke/free/stroke) @ 1:30

200 cool

Wednesday - Sam's practice
1 x 500 free
6 x 50 @ 1' drill/swim
1 x 200 @ 3:30
4 x 100 @ 1:45
1 x 300 @ 5
6 x 50 @ 1' - #3 and #6 fast

Main - 4xs pull
1 x 100 @ 1:50
1 x 100 @ 1:40
1 x 100 @ 1:30

1 x 400 kick
200 cool

Thursday ??

Saturday - my practice. I started with 20 minutes of nice stretch yoga then we swam LCM:
600 loose 
4 x 100 @ 2' (odds build, evens stroke/free)

Main - 2xs  - descending interval. Can choose a different starting point.
2 x 100 @ 2'
2 x 100 @ 1:50
2 x 100 @ 1:45
1 x 100 @ 1:40
1 x 100 @ 1:30
100 ez

4 x 200 pull choice and or snorkel

200 cool


This practice was only Ginger and I. It was the first time I met her. She swam for the U. of Kentucky, so she was really good, but she only gets to train 1-2x/wk. 

Monday - Lovely 5am practice - SCY

200 swim, 200 kick, 200 pull
8 x 50 @ 1' odds drill/swim, evens kick/swim

Main - Canales Set
5 x 100 @ 1:45
4 x 200 @ 3
3 x 300 (swim/stroke/swim by 100)
2 x 400 pull
50 sculling

2 x 50 over the paddle drill (hold paddles)
2 x 50 breast with dolphin kick (fins)
2 x 50 dolphin kick on back (fins)
2 x 50 side kick with three stroke switch once (fins)
2 x 50 back stroke

100 cool

Happy Laps!!

Final Pool pics from this morning....................

Sunset on Thursday night from La Playa when mom and I had dinner at Tiki Bar.