Tuesday, November 3, 2009

3km Swim Results

NERD WARNING!! Non-number-bods turn away now!!

Dear Swimmers

Thanks to so many of you for turning up this morning especially given that a) it was likely to still be a bit cool in the water and b) because you knew you were doing a continuous 3000m swim!!! 

I really don't "like" prescribing these types of sessions (seriously!) as I am well aware that many of you might find this type of swim very boring and perhaps "pointless" as a squad session. However, in an effort to help you guys improve, for you to gauge how much you are improving, and to recognise the fact that a swim such as this every now and then is a great way to boost your endurance, I don't think you can really beat it! So despite a couple of disgruntled looks at 5.30am, I think you all secretly enjoyed it!

OK, onto the results. If you recall, 10 weeks ago I set you all a 3-month training challenge: could the Tuesday Technique / Endurance work coupled with a better pace awareness from the Friday Fresh & Fruity sets help you improve upon my predictions for the following sessions: 1) 14 to 20 x 100m with ~20s rest; 2) 400m Time Trial; 3) 1000m Time Trial; 4) 3000m Time Trial? From last Friday and this morning the answer to Points 1 & 4 have been a resounding "yes!" This is great news. We still obviously have the 400m and 1000m timed swims to go, but like anything, don't fear these - just see what you can do and pace yourself well!

10 weeks ago I went through all 150 squad swimmers and predicted what time you could each hold for the 100m interval test set. My predictions were surprisingly accurate even for a swim-nerd like me! From this I said "can you all improve by ~2.5% in 6-8 weeks?" Using this improved pace per 100m I then extrapolated what you should be able to hold for 400m, 1000m and 3000m building in "fatigue factors" of 2%, 4% and 11.5% respectively. This is not a "cut-throat" method, though it is generally agreed that as the distance of any endurance event doubles the time should increase by 3-4%. I used my own "Fudge Factor" method to eye-ball the results of this equation 10 weeks ago to arrive at a point which I felt was both challenging and realistic. We can debate the accuracy of this method until the cows come home, but given that the first two results from this morning's first finishers with known experience over these distances were both within just 10 seconds of my prediction for 3000m, I'm happy that this is at least a very good approximation! 

You can access the results here: http://theteamcore.com/images/3km.pdf

From the chart, please check for your name, your actual time, your actual pace per 100m, your predicted time from 10 weeks ago, your "improvement" ABOVE my predicted improvement, and your percentage "improvement". Remember a couple of things: 1) even if your improvement was 0:00 or 0%, you have still improved as this takes into account the 2.5% goal from week # 1; 2) anything over 5% is exceptionally good - well done; 3) some of you were a little unsure if you had done more or less than the stipulated distance of 3000m - I have tried to address this below.

Colour Code:

Yellow = no original predicted time from 10 weeks ago (due to absence) - I predicted this as you swam this morning based on other swimmers of known similar ability.

Green = I have modified your finish time slightly to add or subtract the 100m or so that you felt you had done under / over the distance (please note that this is only an approximation)

Red = I couldn't get excel to spit out a negative time (I can't be that nerdy obviously!)...if you are highlighted in red it simply means that you were slightly slower than my predicted time.

Anyway, that's how to spend a morning scouring a whole bunch of numbers - hope you enjoy! ;-)


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