On Saturday I swam at a local meet. I've been working hard in the pool, so I had great hopes for some fast times. When I arrived, though, I noted there were no touch pads! For those who aren't swimmers, let me explain. Touch pads are electronic large, usually black timing pads that attach to the finishing wall in a meet. They are good for two reasons: first, they insure your time is accurate, and second, they offer a good gripping surface off which to perform backstroke starts. Without the pads, backstroke starts are extremely difficult because the tiled wall off which one pushes is slippery. For those people good at starts, not having pads is a bummer. For those of us who have quite terrible backstroke starts already, not having pads is pretty much devastating in terms of a time suck.
My heart sank and my backstroke goals immediately went flat as soon as I learned of the NO touch pad situation.
But then I got over it.
My goal became to match my backstroke times from my last meet despite not having a true start.
I had a good warm up and tried practicing a few starts. In short, it did not go well. SO, I decided I would simply push off the wall without a start for the 100 back, my first event. I definitely lost mucho time doing this, but I ended up nearly matching my time of a month ago in a 1:14.9. Okay, not my dream time, but I'll take it. On the 50 back I attempted a start, but I think I may have lost even more time trying than if I had simply pushed off the wall. I swam a 35.15, which is .06 off my time from last month, so I'm taking that as a win, too.
Then, backstroke was over. Phew!
Andy came to the meet to cheer me on. I say Andy, because even though he brought the kids, I think they missed all four of my swims. Jordan was somewhat interested, but mostly she wanted to play Queens with her sister and brother. But hey, they were there, right? haha!
Anyway, I then swam the 100 free in 1:06.4. That is a good time for me! I haven't swum a 1:06 since I was 17 years old. I swam a 1:07 with the high tech suits we had a few years ago, but I haven't glimpsed 1:06 for 25 years. My goal at Harvard Champs in a month is to break into the 1:05s. Wouldn't that be amazing? To best a time from high school? (I didn't swim in college, so I have no times to best there.) My last event was the 50 fly. I swam a 33.8. That's the same time I swam last month, and I'm sad I wasn't a wee bit faster, but I was pretty tired after the 100 free, and the 50 fly came literally like 5 minutes later. (These small meets are hard that way; not much rest between events.) Andy snapped a picture:
What I see here is that I'm bending at the knee, and not the hip, and I am too high out of the water. But hey, at least my back looks strong, right?
Last night I went to a butterfly and backstroke clinic at Harvard. It was incredibly helpful. Of course, I HATE doing drills because I get so freaking cold. I literally tread water while our lane coach talked to us after each 50 in hopes it would warm me up, but by the time we got out I was completely blue and shivering. Anyway, I learned my turnover on both strokes is way too slow, that my dolphin kick needs to speed up and I need to move from the hips, not the knees, and that my timing is off in the breaststroke pull. At practice this morning I tried to implement what I learned. I have a ways to go. Yikes.
Okay, boring swim entry, I know!
Other than the swim, which I am having SUCH fun with right now, I haven't been doing a lot of training. I waver between thinking I should go to California and just ride the 70.3 course and jog the run, to thinking that is stupid, and that I should just turn the whole trip into a vacation and screw the damn race. I still haven't decided what to do. If I do race it will NOT be fast or pretty given I haven't biked or run more than a few hours a week since last summer, but I just seem unable to muster the umph to do the required work to do well at the event. I fought valiantly for awhile, but then I just decided the fight was making me miserable, so I'd just swim a lot and try to forget there is a 70.3 on my calendar, and now just weeks away!
Last week was a vacation week for the kids. Jordan ended up getting sick toward the end of the week, and then Noah. arghhhhhh. But before then, they had fun making me crazy.
Stacking cans! (random)
Lara got her ears pierced.
And Jordan had a swim meet. She is now a billion times faster than me in the breaststroke, and will soon kick my ass in the other strokes, too. I'm thinking I have about six more months on top. Maybe fewer.
We also get a visit from Alina and company, which was awesome! (Margaritas! Woot!)
And Where is Noah? Good question. He played video games all week and played with his neighbor, Michael. What can I say, I provide a totally wholesome environment here at the Casa de Wilson.