Sunday, May 1, 2016

42 - the meaning of Life, the Universe, and Everything and also the number of great results from Busselton 70.3 for the squad!

Dear Swimmers

Some great achievements this Sunday down in Busselton at the Ironman 70.3 event. Some 42 members of the squad had prepared valiantly for the event which sees the athletes compete over 1.9k in the ocean, 90k on the bike and 21.1k on the run. A special mention - even though he gets a lot of them - to Graham Crocker! 1st in all 3 disciplines and winning his category by over 20 minutes with an average pace of 1:25/100m on the 1.9k swim. Graham will be 67 years young this July. Incredible.

We had an amazing 8 of you post sub-4:20 times too - I just can't believe it! 2 of these were the ladies Emily Loughnan and Kate Bevilaqua (with Renee Baker just a few minutes back in 4:25 too!). Well done to the boys: Guy Crawford, Nick Baldwin, Gary Cousins, Luke Cameron, Matt Illingworth and Sean Jermy. Can a number bod out there please run me some average number comparisons of this race versus years gone by? I reckon it'd have to be 15-20 minutes quicker than say in 2008/9? The top age-groupers are posting times now that the PROs of yesteryear would have been proud of and - for the ladies - would have won with!

And whilst it's "easy" to obviously praise those who finish high up in their respective ranks, of course one of the great things about this event is that we see the coming together of a huge variety of abilities and backgrounds to race over the same brilliant course. I'd like to make special mention to Roberta Lori and her achievement yesterday who finished in 5:46 with an average pace of 2:00/100m on the swim. For those who know Roberta and all that she has been through in the last few years, you'll know that this is a very special achievement indeed. Well done Roberta, you never cease to amaze me!

Well done to everyone else and all those who competed in teams too - your coach is proud! See you all soon! Drop me a line and let me know how you went!

Inspired by their results? Let me know what your goals are over the winter months?

Cheers

Paul


Friday, April 29, 2016

It's been a busy 12 months - look who's coming!


Guru says: do not fear training, fast it will make you!

Dear Swimmers

Let me start off by wishing everyone competing at this Sunday's Busselton 70.3 event the very best of luck! May the force be with you all and the winds kind! Go get 'em!

Secondly, special good luck to Coaches Cyndy & Sally who next week will be away up at the Lake Argyle 10k/20k open water swim event respectively, along with a few other squad members competing in teams. The girls have done a fantastic job of training super consistently and will go well I am sure! I will be taking the next fortnight of Tuesday / Thursday 6.15pm sessions, so I look forward to taking over cracking the whip from the girls for a while and repaying the help they gave for me whilst on holiday in Kalbarri last week. Go girls!

Thirdly, I've had a cancellation for a coveted 1-2-1 Video Analysis Session next Friday 6th May at 7.45am - if you want it, please go on the app and register asap or book via http://www.swimsmoothperth.com/#!appointments/cta3 


So, it's been a very busy year indeed…the Busselton 70.3 race always feels like the true end of the season however, as they say, "if it ain't raining, it ain't training!"...


...so I'll be looking forward to hear of your goals and motivations over the winter months…suggestions on a post card please! However, hopefully below I have the perfect idea for how you might approach the cooler months with a project we've been working hard to bring to fruition over the last 12 months, the Swim Smooth Guru! Check it out here - it's our best work yet:


Please visit https://vimeo.com/164311757/df95953855 for a video run-through of how the Guru can help you!

For more details and explanations about this fun project which has required a monumental amount of sweat and tears to complete, please see: http://bit.ly/1XXBFHv 

Have a great weekend everyone!

Paul

Friday, April 15, 2016

ANZAC Day Swims at 7am and 9.30am are back on!

Dear Swimmers

The 7am and 9.30am Pure Technique Session on Monday 25th April 2016 had been originally cancelled and you had probably already seen that you had no bookings for your regular class that day. The pool has just notified me that it will be opening at 7am that morning as per most normal Public Holidays, so our 7am and 9.30am sessions can proceed as normal - whoop! 

That day's 1-2-1 Video Analysis and Stroke Correction session at 8.10am (between the two squads) is also now available for your reference - first come, best dressed! If you happen to miss this one, the following Monday 2nd May at 8.10am is also available - use "bubblebubblebreathe" for 10% off for these specific sessions. Please use the app to book.

To book your place, please open the Swim Smooth Perth app, login and navigate to Group Classes from the menu on the left and simply select "Book Class" to register - it's very easy! If you're not using our fabulous new app, you can do the same thing from this page http://www.swimsmoothperth.com/#!register/c15q and navigate to ANZAC Day to register.

Please note: currently, nobody is registered for either of these two sessions automatically as I've just re-added them back onto the schedule. Given that many of you might already be away that morning anyway, rather than prompt you to take action to "cancel", I thought it easier to prompt you to "book" instead if you are available. If not, no worries, your normal spot(s) will still be there in future weeks. Thanks for your assistance in this regard.

P.S anyone good at baking ANZAC cookies for that morning??!!

P.P.S I will leave you with the fantastic coaching team of Cyndy, Sally and Marie next week whilst I head up to Kalbarri for several day's camping - can't wait! I'll see you back on ANZAC day!

Cheers

Paul

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

An Apology, Some Tuesday Rumination, and a Thank You!

Dear Swimmers

Firstly, an apology:


…if you swam in this morning's 5.30am Technique / Endurance session, I feel I rather put my foot in it with how I described the situation of fewer swimmers in the "top" two lanes, with many more swimmers in the "bottom" two lanes. This required a quick creative re-shuffle from lane 1 through to lane 4 - like a spreading action from right to left as I looked at the pool and has been the case for the last few weeks in this session. However, I described this as being "bottom-heavy" and it's just been nagging at me since as soon as the words left my mouth that this would possibly be construed as being derogatory to those of you who swim in those lanes 1 & 2!! So I apologise if any offence was taken, non was meant. I tend to have a habit of over-thinking these things as you can probably tell!!

I normally like to affectionately think of the lanes as being fast, faster, fast and fastest - being a glass half-full type of guy - but with good reason…just recently we had the 13 international coaches over and they all commented about how quick our lane 1 swimmers are relative to their own lane 1 - in most cases between 10 and 25 seconds per 100m faster. So indeed, you guys are fast…all of you! This made me extremely proud to receive that feedback from my peers - you might not have necessarily moved up a lane yourself but the squad as a whole is getting faster (making it harder to "jump up" normally) and that's always something worthy of celebrating!

Secondly, some Tuesday Rumination if you will:


…what this creative lane shuffling has demonstrated for the last few weeks since the major open water races have now come to an end is that:

  1. there are a significantly greater number of swimmers in the Tuesday 5.30am session from lanes 1 and 2 still ticking along nicely, the temporary drop-off is more evident in lanes 3 and 4
  2. this tallies up nicely with the survey I ran last June where you each indicated whether you were "in it to win it" (competitive) or "in it for fun and fitness" (health benefits) - those who are taking some well earned rest from lanes 3 and 4 - and typically in that "in it to win it" category - are opening up space for others to actively participate in what is now classed as going into the off-season, save for the Busselton 70.3 race of course in 3 weeks! Thank you for releasing your spots as temporarily as that might be!
  3. that we have a dedicated group of year-round swimmers who see the health benefits of attending the squad sessions as being key to their daily lives. Great!
  4. could it be that the competitiveness of a Red Mist Cycle 3 or a side-by-side 50m dash is enough to satisfy your inner-Thorpedo without the need to enter a formal race? If so, also great!

…so as mentioned this morning, please recall for the next few weeks which lanes you swam in this morning 5.30am crew as it's likely that these will be your default lanes for the next little while…possibly! And that's the 5th point, the new system is working brilliantly for offering spaces to those who'd have previously missed out even in the quieter months, so this shake-up and creative re-shuffling adds a who new level of dynamism to the squad which personally I'm really enjoying! It's testing me to be the best that I can be to constantly re-callibrate lane speeds etc depending on who is leading. I hope that's evident in how you're finding the sessions lately yourselves?

So that's the Big Thank You really:


…thanks for having embraced the new system - we've been up and running exactly 8 months now and with your support and assistance it's proving to make a massive difference all around - for you, for the other swimmers who have previously been on the periphery, and us. Thank you!