Ideas, photos, routes, and how I fare doing all sorts of workouts. Riding, swimming, biking, etc. Dave Masterson's workout blog.

Archive for the category “Swims”

Think about everything and pass the time

 2000m – Having not been in the pool for awhile, which seems like I’m typing this all too often, I was happy to just tick off the 40 touches/80 laps. Most of the workout was solo, only at the end after 30 laps did a fast girl get in the lane next to me.

To watch her exert the same effort as me and go considerably faster means I am walking or jogging these workouts instead of running them. I don’t have plenty of incentive to swim them faster, but curiosity may influence me to try harder next time at the pool.



Leftover laps

20131119-082911.jpg2000 yards My first significant swim in a month! I felt ok, other than the googles were on strangualtion mode as far as my eyes could tell. Breathing was good, my time was slow but I didn’t hate the experience. I do like the look I get from using the non-run muscles on my upper body. It feels good when I’m done!

The lady in the lane next to me swims most days of the week – she is 70. She is just about as fast as I am swimming. I have all winter to keep this fitness routine alive a few times a week. I know I should, it helps breathing, overall fitness and discipline of doing something most mornings.

You know this

2000 yards. Not much memorable about swimming mostly alone in the pool today. The stalwart lady who’s always there was doing laps in the first lane. A big muscle guy did a few minutes of swimming in the center lane. I chose to swim where I normally do, the outer lane with two strips and one lane rope. I couldn’t figure out why the drawstring tie around my waist was flopping around as I swam. Then I noticed the swim shorts I was using were inside out. Wonderful to think what this would look like had anyone else seen them – the mini “crotch net” and seams all exposed – like that was normal! When I finished, an older man was getting ready to swim next to me. I climbed out of the pool and went for my towel, which was placed up next to the wall so my splashing and non-existent kick turns wouldn’t get it wet. He had a seeing eye dog with him, sitting nicely by the wall. I made no motion towards the dog or sounds to attract his attention. The man looked at me and said, “You know not to touch my dog, right?” Not wanting to say or start any incident with a comment like that as my lead-in, I merely replied, “Yes, I’m not touching the dog.” I picked up my towel and walked away.

I knew not to touch the dog after swimming indoors at LA Fitness from all of my previous encounters with blind swimmers mid week mornings. Wouldn’t you?

A good purpose

2000 yards – I like this conditioning shape I’ve attained by peppering in swims and spin classes to augment real road running and biking. So after I’ve woken up early to run the almost-empty bridge today, I do a quick turnaround shower and get on the street to drive to LA Fitness Okeechobee to swim. I don’t leave too much time for me to finish what i’m after – 40 minutes of swimming, a shower, then the quick drive to the office. I could have slept the additional 2 hours, but I’ll adjust and figure that out tonight.

The laps were ok, I felt earlier in the swim that I could do the whole workout a tad faster than just flopping through it. I had good ideas while alone, thinking about what swimming in Lake Zurich would be like again in a wetsuit, what the Lake Worth sprint tri would be like (which I’m not entering this year) and overall the difference between slow swimming and having some purpose. I feel it in my triceps, I flutter a good kick some laps, I’d really like to keep this twice a week routine going. It isn’t difficult and I know it adds a good piece of fitness that I woudn’t get running or riding. As always, these workouts are best appreciated when you’re over them, looking back is a reward for the mind and body!

Feeling like I have to be fast

2000 yards Summer hours? Yes! I don’t have to take John to school so I can avoid rushing to and from the pool at LA Fitness. When I get notice that I have to be in for a meeting with visiting guests at a certain time, that adds some urgency to my workout. I know about how long it takes for me to do the regular 40 touches to the other side. With a time constraint, I swim faster. The pool was empty so I had no distractions. I felt good, with a sense of pep as I warmed up. It seems like lap 26 is when I get a feeling that I can go forever. This is slightly more than 1/4 of the way to the 2.4 mile IM distance. So I have a routine and the familiarity of this and distance swimming. The clear goggles keep suffering from peel off of the rubber eye gasket. I’ll be sure to have new ones for the race.

Monday is energy-low

2000 yards. I know I have to, but it’s not fun, desireable or good still. I come a bit later since John is at scout camp. No one else is swimming except for the lady in the too-small bikini, so it’s easy to slip into the center lane and do my 40 touches to the other side. I find a little lap timer clock that I keep and put in my bag – I think it may belong to the bearded guy that’s usually here before me in that lane. I spend time thinking about the nutrition drinks and what the swim start and ensuing first 1/2 mile can be like in Lake Zurich. I’ll be ready for good conditions and a fast wetsuit swim.


2000 yards. With the local Motivation Man 1/2 iron distance looming in a week, it’s now that I solidify the thoughts I want to carry with me as I race. Starting obviousl;y with swimming, I know last year I was slow for the Olympic distance. The current was against me, yes, but it wasn’t a good performance. I’ve done better this year to condition myself for longer swims. I haven’t engaged in drills, my purpose was to get the idea and fitenss familarization to swim long and then be ready to go once out of the water.

I spend the time limping through laps with clear Speedo goggles that have the plush foam peeling off the plastic eye lens on one side. I didn’t notice this defect at first, I kept trying to see why they might not be fitting correctly on just one side. A closer looka nd the black padding really was separating from the goggles. I’ll buy another one, return this as dead and at least have two shots and having one good pair for the race.

When I was finished, I spoke with a lady who swims occasionally at the LA Fitness pool. She said she saw some Crossfit trucks around CityPlace and was interested in competing. We spoke about the Regional Crossfit games and how many people came from the Southwest to see them here in WPB. She said something that stuck with me when we spoke about the younger, fit competitors. She said she likes to keep herself calm and in the moment while she competes. Being able to do this gives her an advantage vs the brute force “train for it and through it method.”  I agree. I’ve described what i do as “engineering” success in races. That includes visualization of the day and its details going well and knowing adversities may come up but I’ll deal with them better than most. This is running the tangents in a marathon, eating well and resting before the race, having a solid replenishment plan that I’m alredy familiar with for the race, seeing all my equipement laid out properly before the race. That works for me. As the event gets closer, I get excited for the beginning of the packet pickup, seeing the people and being “in the moment.” I don’t have a nervous, “What’s going to happen” feeling. I think some would pay for this mental stability, seeing they unravel before competition. I like my plan, I have good fitness, the swimming allows me to see and plan for this undisturbed. Except for the leaky eye socket thing. I tightened the goggle strap until it was so pressed on my eyes it couldn’t leak.  My thoughts and my eyes were consumed with the prep for next week’s event.


2000 yards. Those comfy padded goggles found a way to dig right into my nose today. The first two laps had one eye leaking, and the plastic on that side for the first time was poking into my nose. Not terrible, it beats some big guy’s foot crashing into my face, so i’ll write it into my training as knowing what uncomfortable feels like. And still continuing to swim!

So beyond that, same number of laps, about the same time to do them, more thinking about the upcoming races. I have such a good sense of visualization, even for places I haven’t raced. I think it comes from BMX. I never knew what a far-away trcak would have for a layout, jumps, turns, etc. So I’d conjure up in my mind what it would feel like to get a good start, ride smoothly and do well. I’d also do this for BMX jumping, envisioning what I’d look like through the process and then landing. It works. I see race car drivers do this and skiers that know their course well using the same exercise. I see myself digging through the smooth waters of Lake Zurich, out there for less time than I prepapre for due to drafting and a wetsuit. Yes I do!

Tiring, but that’s the point

2000 yards. The routine of swimming and the counting of my laps is ok. Whe I get in the pool, it’s cold at first but I don’t feel that once I start seeing how far along the known markers on the wall my strokes take me. I know it’s necessary to condition myself to swim mindlessly for awhile in order to get out of the water and do the race downtown in three weeks and in Switzerland in July. I’m not always focused on swim thoughts, today I reviewed what I did over the weekend, two brick ride/run workouts. I will be going through some IM nutritional data in spare time now to see what ideas ring a bell with how I already know I’ve fueled myself in long events. Maybe I’ll use the well-padded clear Speedo goggles, that would be good. I’m thinking of bringing my sleeveless westuit to Zurich instead of renting one that restricts my arms. I’ll be moving, so the cold shouldn’t be much of a bother. The freedom of moving my arms for 2+ miles of swimming is more important. If I change my mind, I can rent, sample and use a suit at the race.

Monday doesn’t excite as many swimmers

2000 yards. There is no clamor for lanes at LA Fitness on a Monday. By the time I’m 75% done, a few guys show up to swim, but they end up taking the lanes next to me. One guy swims with fins and a snorkel. Yes he goes faster than I do. I think mostly about envisioning all aspects of the Zurich course. I know the area by Lake Zurich, so I have some reality to base my visions on. I also solidify my plans to ride more between now and July 6th weekend. I can build good cycling legs and the nurition necesary to support an all day effort between now and Motivation Man, then Switzerland.

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