Thursday, November 4, 2010

2010 Was A Fine Year, Indeed

I swam before work again this morning. I logged 2,000 yards, which is typical these days when I manage to catch the second bus to work that leaves the commuter lot at 6:30 am. When I make it to the first bus that leaves at 6:10 am I have time to put in 2,500 yards.

I did make that first bus today, but I cut down on the distance to do something I've never done before. I was talking to my friend Slaven at Masters swimming last night about the butterfly stroke. We both agreed that we'd like to be better at it. I've been pretty diligent at working on IM on a regular basis. But the longest distance I can endure when doing butterfly is 100 yards. I'd love to feel comfortable with 200 yard fly.

They had a 200 yard fly event at the last Masters meet I signed up for in 2004. Several brave souls signed up for it. The winner was a specialist whose technique was fast and smooth the whole way. He was the best flier I've ever seen who wasn't competing in the Olympics on television. How I'd like to build myself up to that level!

Slaven and I talked about a good fly set. I said I thought I might be able to handle a 10x50 fly set on a 1:30 interval, but I wasn't sure. (We nixed the idea in favor of 5x100 IM instead.) I've never tried it to test my limits. The most strenuous set I do is a descending IM pyramid: 1x400 IM on 8:00/1x300 IM on 6:00/1x200 IM on 4:00/1x100 IM on 2:00.

So after I warmed up and finished a set of 5x100 free on 1:45, I decided to submit to that test: Could I hold up through a 10x50 fly set? I finished the first one in under 50 seconds, so I decided that a 1:30 interval was too long. Would my heart explode by the end if I held to an interval of 1:15? I surprised myself by completing it in style. I was so pleased with myself. I'll have to make this a regular feature of my workouts. Perhaps I can make 200 fly a goal for 2011.

It was a milestone workout, too. My best yearly yardage total (524,200 yards) came in 2008. When I added this morning's total to my tracking spreadsheet the running total was 500,050 yards. I've already topped 500K yards for only the second time in the 17 years I've been keeping track. And it's only the first week in November! 2010 will be a difficult year to top.

But that's what I said at the end of 2008.

It feels good.

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