Wednesday, March 24, 2010


It has been a while since I’ve written, which makes this post all the more relevant. About 3 weeks ago we had our second Total Immersion swim lesson. I felt great, learning tweaks to my body to swim with greater ease. The problem is that its slowing me down now, but I’m sure that it will be better in the end. I was able to get in the pool at Bally’s a couple times for drilling then I showed up one day @ 5:30AM and BAM.. “pool closed indefinitely.” Since I didn’t child rate this blog, I won’t share my expletives.

I’ve been trying to figure out what to do and how to swim. This of course has also de-railed my training. I fell into this routine of going on certain days, but now that I have to figure out a contingency, it’s SO easy to just skip it. Then, on top of that, I landed a 2 week migraine, sinus infection and ear infection. This resulted in my motivation just plummeting!

My brain keeps telling me “go find another pool”, but my body says “ooh, just one more day on the couch and you’ll feel better.”

The dive shop pool opens April 10, but I’m 7 weeks away from my first race (May 9). I know myself and I know that I need to have the pool, bikes and weights all incorporated into my workouts. I suppose I could swim in 50 degree water, but I like having blood in my extremities.

I learned a big lesson in all of this, I totally counted on my membership to Bally’s but you never know! I learned to have a contingency plan- BEFORE the breakdown! I waited until yesterday to start looking at my contingencies. I found out I could swim with a friend at a local college. I also am going on a business trip and I specifically sought out a hotel with a lap pool.

Hopefully when I get there Sunday, I don’t forget how to swim.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

I smell like Chlorine!

I’m assuming most people that read this know me, but for those that don’t, I’m also a divemaster and I tend to smell like chlorine from May – Sep. I work with classes and I can just never get the smell out of my hair or my SKIN. This year, I’ve entered into the chlorine zone earlier than usual! I do try to explain this to at least the women in my dive classes. First, be sure to use special pool shampoo – the chemicals dry your hair, not to mention if you’re blond, you can turn GREEN!!! The second thing is that it just destroys your bathing suits. I totally make fun of “kids today” (yea I’m old) for wearing their pants around their butts, but I feel like my bathing suits end up there very quickly because the elastic lasts about 8 weeks tops!

The worst though, is that I CANNOT get the smell of chlorine out of my skin. I can scrub and scrub and its still there. UGH!

BUT – onto the good news. TI (Total Immersion) swimming is going well. We had another lesson on Sunday but it was another 2.5 hrs in the pool with not a lot of strong activity. People forget that you CAN get hypothermic in 90 degree water.

We spent the time learning and drilling. I’m still at the stage where I am thinking WAY too much.

• Where is my hip?
• Where is my arm?
• Is my outward arm at the right angle?
• Is my head facing down?
• Is my other arm coming up and switching properly?
• Are my arms in the wide track?
• Are my hips stacked or are they at 45 degree angle?
• Is my body streamlined?
• Am I kicking from my knees or hips?
• Am I breathing?
• Am I letting my hip FALL?
• Am I shoving my shoulder down (like I’m not supposed to)?
• What stroke number am I on?
• Am I going to kick Alexis in the head?
• Am I going to run my head into the wall?
• Am I going to get a snout full of water?

THANK GOODNESS I don’t really have problems breathing while swimming, I swear I was a fish or sea turtle in a prior life I don’t want to have to consider trying to add that to what I have to think about.

We did a 1.25 hr spin class followed by drilling in the pool today. I did about 1000 yards of straight drills. I think I did about 500-800 yards on Thursday (I didn’t count).

I’ll stay out of the water tomorrow and will get back in to freshen up my ode-de-pool on Tuesday!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Glycogen Depletion

I've spent many years pretending to go to the gym, or other activities and when it gets really tough I make up some excuse as to why I need to stop.

"My knee hurts", "My foot hurts", "I'm tired", "I'm sore".. etc. I've always had those excuses, and when I felt that I was too tired to keep going I just stopped and said "good job." Well, I've hit this crazy wall and I know I can do better (see previous post about me not being satisfied).

I've had two workouts recently where I've actually reached glycogen depletion. It is the absolute weirdest thing. My brain says "GO, YOU ARE NOT DONE WITH YOUR WORKOUT" but my body says "NOPE - I'M DONE!!!"

I've always wondered what happened to marathon runners when they just collapse, I can't help but think "hey they did all that training, why don't they just get up and suck it up?" - Well.. now I know.

Well I learned that fully this week. Once you've depleted your glycogen levels there is NOTHING, I mean NOTHING left.

That's why nutrition is soooo important for endurance sports!!!

I'm glad I got to feel that sensation in a controlled setting!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Time For Coaching

I've been working with a personal training for several months now. I've been working on strength and burst cardio mostly. I've been spending time in the pool doing laps, as well as a few spin classes a week. typically I spend about 5-7 hrs a week at the gym.

My problem is I'm never satisfied! (my poor parents, and yes my poor husband - mind out of the gutter people)!!

A year ago if someone said I would be spending 5-7 hrs at the gym I would have told them that's nutz. Now I know that's just not enough time. Seriously how much is enough? If I did everything I "WANTED" to do, I swear I'd have to quit my job and just live at the gym. Time to step it up a bit though! Coaching here I come!

Saturday I went to a private Total Immersion (TI) swim lesson with Alexis. Now, I know how to swim. I have a consistent stroke, and I do "ok" in a race. I'm by NO MEANS fast! I knew going into this that I was going to have to re-think some things but HOLY COW..

For those that know TI, you'll give me the 'uh-huh' for those that don't - read up on it, its great! Apparently me being a diver is contra to my swimming. I do things underwater that are absolutely backwards of what is supposed to be done on the surface.

The one thing that's going to be so hard for me is to look down!! I look forward (yea I don't like to run into things and I want to see what's around me).. but head down will keep my momentum better.

So we got through a few drills, luckily my dive training has taught me to hold my breath for quite a while so I can actually get through longer drills this way. We got through 'fish' and 'skate'. I have to constantly think about where my head is and where my arm is. Then as I add a step to think about my rotation and again, WHERE my head is and where my ARM is.. UGH.. too much thinking for the pool!

The pool usually is my yoga, I zone out and can swim for miles in a totally zen state. I know this coaching is great and it will help me excel in the sport, but its so hard to stop and RE-LEARN. I just hope I can get back to that zen!

We have another lesson next Sat - 2 hrs in the pool. I actually can't wait. Then on the 20th I have a Chi-Running clinic. Hopefully my brain won't explode!