How Many Dimensions In Swimming?

Today I swam only 2400m, starting at 9:00. The pool was 30 degrees C.

400 mixed warmup

3x [150 FG, 4×25 sprint, 2×50 sprint, 100 sprint, 150 sprint] lower SPL -1 each repeat, hold times.

SPL 16 SPL 15 SPL 14
150 FG
4×25 All :22 :20.. :21.. :21.. :22..
2×50 Both :47 Both :44 Both :45
100 1:34 1:31 1:33
150 2:22 2:20 2:21

100 recovery

100m timed, count SPL (lost goggles so I scrapped at 75m at 1:02, SPL 14, 17..)

COMMENTARY

I was still feeling tired and sluggish. This ear infection and sinus infection is slowly going down but my body has been fighting it for several weeks. I just want to sleep all the time. I wasn’t sure what I would swim today but I wrote this set down just in case, then decided it looked appealing. It was a mental set more than a physical one- meaning the goals were a matter of mental focus, so I could perform and imprint and improve even if I was not 100%.

This is a key concept that takes swimming away from a one-dimensional sport (think: “speed-only-matters”) to a multi-dimensional art (think: I am in control of and comfortable with all variables in my swim). I can work on mastery of my swimming, making progress even when I am impaired by some limiting condition. Stability matters. Efficiency matters. Focus matters. Smooth matters. Quiet matters. Enjoyment matters. Longevity as a swimmer matters.

I was surprised and pleased to hold 14 SPL and hold the times. To do this I focused on long-reach and rotating the shoulder to follow the reaching hand, keeping the reaching hand on a straight track from its entry point (rather than cutting across my path, which results in making my shoulders stay flatter) which cut drag and as a result I got more distance and speed per stroke.

This may be one of my keys to developing more speed with lower SPL- I have to condition this fuller shoulder rotation (from the hips) at a higher SR. I have to work to de-program, or rather ‘over-write’ my neuromuscular pathway, away from the entropic tendency to flatten the torso and widen my stroke in order to move my arms faster. Splashy, flat swimming looks faster but my data shows me that it isn’t.

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