Day 4 of the Great Big 10k Marathon Swim Adventure

Whoaw. Inspirational time in the water: I swam with a powerhouse in the next lane this time. She kept pushing past me, doing very fast laps, then lots of drills and variations. We had a quick chat when she got out, and turns out she is a former Bavarian state level swimmer. Inspiritational stuff. So I pushed myself a bit more because of that distance-wise (not that I was silly enough to think I could race her), since it was just great to be in the water with someone so competent and with great technique.

Ok I need to have a quick rant here for a minute: My trusty Zoggs Predator Flex Reactor goggles (read my review here) broke yesterday. They have been used a lot and bounced around my swim bag, so I am not upset. But it brings up the question of gear in the water and something that has caught my attention as I started swimming in different pools around these parts: Why is everyone (ok, some guys) wearing those little fins when swimming in a tiny 25m lap pool? And what are those gloves some swimmers are wearing? Yep. Gloves. I am both impressed and surprised when I see all the gear some people bring poolside. With triathletes, I guess it comes with the territory: The amount of gear you need for biking in particular makes it natural to have lots of stuff in use. Me, who barely has time to swim and six mouths plus pets to feed, I just have my bathers, goggles and watch. Sometimes a Zoggs kickboard, which also works as a pull buoy. No mp3 player, usually no paddles. No isotonic drinks. Anyway will post some gear reviews soon as I will need to at least add some new goggles to my collection.

Ok, end of rant! To the workout summary:
I was in the water for a good hour, of which I spent 55.29 minutes. Swam 3175m, in other words 127 laps. My SWOLF, by the way seems to be a consistent 35. I have no idea whether this is good, or how I can use this data to improve, so will need to learn more about that when I have some time.

Workout – 3175m, as usual taken from my Garmin Swim:
1250m (more than just a warmup I guess) in 20:54 mins at 1.40 mins/100m
125m mixed (pretty sure I backstroked, but hey)
550m casual free, mixed 2/4 stroke breath, focus on technique in 9:48
250m breaststroke with butterfly kick, at 2:07/100m
1000m free in 17:44 at 1:46/100m
I did cool off with a few loose laps but had the watch stopped

Analysis:
Swimming again immediately after a practice day meant I was relaxed about times. Before jumping in the water, I had decided to just aim for a comfortable 2k. Then the awesome abilities and energy of my lane neighbour convinced me to do more. At this stage I am just happy to make it to the pool almost every day, despite the hectic pre-Christmas season and still not normal hours at work. My awesome wife is even taking me for a swim (followed by a nice dinner) on our date night tonight. Bless.

Insight:
The phase I am in seems to be the “just try and get pool time in every day” stage. If I can keep this up till spring, gradually getting my middle aged body used to working out every day and at the same time increasing the training distances, then this milestone is achieved. Around February, I could be averaging 20k a week this way, or roughly 3k per workout per day. That is about twice as much as I do at the moment. I may need to get up at 5am every day to get that in before work, but I am happy to do so (or at least I think I could get that happening). Once I hit this stage, I can look at the timing of my workout phases ahead of some prospective racing in summer/early autumn. Can’t wait to “taper” with some Mexican food at the excellent “El Puente” in Oberammergau tonight ;-)

Mood:
Calm and good. Slept really well again, and feel physically better than ever thanks to getting into the water obviously. Look forward to more quality time with the wife and kids this weekend.

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This will hopefully be dinner tonight – as my wife is taking me on date night at El Puente in Oberammergau. Image (c) obviously El Puente.