Friday, December 31, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
- Wednesday 29th = 5.30am & 9.30am
- Friday 31st = 5.30am, 6.30am & 9.30am
- Back to normal as of Monday 3/1/11 with the addition of Mondays at 7am (technique session) and Tuesdays at 6.30pm (technique / endurance work)
Friday, December 17, 2010
- Tuesday 6.30am to 7.30am
- Friday 5.30am to 6.30am
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
- all as normal up to and including Christmas Eve, i.e. 5.30am, 6.30am and 9.30am at Claremont Pool. Sessions will all run with a special Christmas "twist" - it'll be a lot of fun!
- Christmas Day - nothing apart from lots of turkey and mince pies!
- Boxing Day (26th) - 8am Cottesloe to Swanbourne (or thereabouts) and back. Casual swim...do as much or as little as you like. Meet on grass bank in front of the Pylon at Cottesloe.
- 27th and 28th December (public holidays) - no early morning lanes available at any pool. Will keep you posted as we may meet for some more OW swimming.
- 29th December - 5.30am and 9.30am sessions as normal at Claremont Pool (both sessions open for anyone to attend as numbers are likely to be quiet)
- 30th December - 5.30pm rough water swim at Trigg Beach (meet at the SLSC tower)
- 31st December - 5.30am, 6.30am and 9.30am sessions as normal at Claremont Pool (all sessions open for anyone to attend as numbers are likely to be quiet)
- 1st January - 9am, 10km swim at Trigg Beach (5km out and back with paddlers) - this is not a race, just a training session and hangover remedy!
- 2nd January - 8am, 5km Leighton Beach race
- 3rd January - all back to normal from here forwards - refer to http://www.swimsmooth.com/perth_timetable.html for full details.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
I'm looking for two male "Arnies" from the squad (i.e. those with Sinky Leg syndrome who swim much quicker with a pull buoy / wetsuit than without) who both own their own wetsuit, preferably one which is a few years old. We have been given two Blue Seventy "Axis" wetsuits to run some trials on. These suits are designed specifically with Arnie's in mind - the way the suit works is that it features less buoyancy in the upper torso and added buoyancy in the legs. This is Blue Seventy thinking outside of the box and the conventional of just having more buoyancy all over which just lifts the swimmer higher overall without correcting the Sinky Leg issue. I've tried this suit myself and was very impressed with it's performance.
The test will be to do three 400m trials in a) your old suit, b) the new suit and c) in normal bathers to compare the results. The two suits are sized appropriately for someone ~70kg and 5'7 to 5'10" and another for someone ~85kg and 6'0" to 6'3".
Please let me know if you're keen to partake. Testing will take place in the next two weeks.
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Great start this week at the newly refurbished Claremont Pool - all is going well and it's great to be back. See you down there soon.
I haven't had full reports through yet, but there were some scintillating results at the weekend from members of the squad.
The big news was Kate Bevilaqua's superb overall race win at Ironman Western Australia in front of initial race favorite and previous winner, Rebekah Keat. I'm so gutted I missed seeing Kate race as by all accounts it was totally inspiring! More results at ironmanlive.com. Kate was joined in her win in the mens event by other local hero Courtney Ogden proving that they build them tough over here in WA!
Also racing were Paul McQueen, Matt Biddle, Hannah McKerrchar, Ron Sammut (who scooped another race win in his age group), Daniel Tarborsky, Jane Day, Matt Illingworth and Guy Crawford. I'm sure I've missed a few people from the listings and if I have and you have any race stories from the day, please email them through and I'll compile a full report. I'm very keen to see Dan T's improved GPS plot of a much straighter swim than May - well done Dan!
The day before was the Swim Thru Rotto which I was very sad to have missed myself. Again I haven't seen the full reports yet but know that the Pocket Rocket Ceinwen Williams scooped up another impressive win in her age group so I am told and that the event was very enjoyable for everyone who journeyed across.
So this weekend there is the Fremantle Ports Swim Thru in Saturday and then the Champion Lakes Swim on Sunday which quite a few of us will be attending. Maybe see you there...?!
Saturday, December 4, 2010
- most of the 9.30am squad (M / W / F) and also the Saturday 1.00pm open water skills squad
- Hannah McKerrchar
- Bonnie Tollafield
- Jeremy Buttsworth
- Christine Lowe
- Michael S (?)
- Marie-Therese Hunter
- Helen McKinnon
- Nick (?)
- Lawrence Stubbs
- Steve Wilson
- Fiona (?)
- Kim Smith
- Looking at the interest in the new squad sessions (Monday at 7am, Tuesday at 6.30pm and Wednesday at 5.30am) I am happy to confirm that certainly Monday at 7am will commence from Monday 3rd January and Wednesday at 5.30am will commence from this Wednesday 8th December. I will wait to see if we get more interest in the Tuesday evening session before committing to this one...of course, please let me know if you'd like to do that one!
- IMPORTANT: Rottnest SOLO and DUO swimmers who have been either doubling up the 5.30am and 6.30am sessions on a Tuesday and Thursday at Challenge just recently (or maybe just doing an extra 1-2km into the second session) are kindly advised that it will no longer be possible for you to do this sadly as we get squeezed down to 3 lanes at the new venue. I apologise for the inconvenience of this, however, we have added the Wednesday morning session and will be requesting an extension on this to 7.30am to allow you to get a 2hr totally specific endurance set in mid-week, coupled with our Rottnest Pace Awareness Session and Volume Builder on a Saturday at 5.30am up at Challenge Stadium (if you're not on the email list for this specific session - non-coached - but would like to be, email me back please advising this) and also the Sunday morning long ocean swim. This I feel is more than enough volume for you during the week and should allow you to really focus on the quality of your performance on a Friday morning in particular. Of course, if you're attending at 5.30am and want to pop into another public lane to finish off at 6.30am, then this will be fine.
- The 5.30am and 6.30am sessions will go back to starting at these times (as opposed to 5.35am and 6.35am) as usually Claremont are pretty good at letting you through at about 5.26am and obviously you only have a 30s walk to the pool now - yipee! Please be ready to start on time.
- I have allocated 8 people per lane in all the sessions, with an additional 3 "buffer" spaces per lane as well. If you are on the buffer list, you can attend. The way this system works is a little "give and take" - we have decided to maintain the flexibility of our Pay As You Go Card system (PAYG) to allow you maximum payment flexibility at the sessions - don't fancy swimming one day and your name is on the list? Not a problem, we won't penalise you for it! This often means that the squad operates with fewer people per lane than we anticipate. Again, this is great for you guys. However, at peak times (i.e. the next 2 weeks and January / February 2011), we do anticipate times when the sessions will be a little busier when everyone nominated may turn up for a session. I hope that you can understand and support this as it all balances out in the wash (as they say), leaving everyone happy, i.e. you the swimmers and us the coaches. Below I have detailed my top tips for good lane swimming etiquette at the busier sessions.
- I will still be pushing for that 4th lane in the earlier sessions, and like last summer, I am hoping that this might be possible from 6.45am - I'll keep you posted!
- Unless otherwise advised, please use the clock and set-off exactly 5 seconds behind the person in front of you. You do not (and should not) try to catch them up immediately, as whilst this gives you a draft and makes it feel easier, you're not getting the best possible workout that you could and it also annoys the person in front. The coach will announce when drafting is actively encouraged, but especially on drill / technique sets, please keep your distance to allow everyone to perform at their best.
- Always keep to the left and swim in a clockwise direction (like you would on the road). Stay close to the lane rope and avoid swimming in the middle of the lane as this is when head-on collisions occur or whacking of arms. This is especially important in Lane 3 (fastest lane) as there is a good range of ability within this lane especially in the faster, harder sessions.
- If someone is catching you up and you are aware that they wish to get past you, either pull right over to the left (keep swimming), or better still, when you reach the end of the pool pull off to the left, stop, and let them past here.
- Be vigilant when you are pushing off in the middle of a set - is someone coming up to the wall to effectively lap you? If so, don't push off immediately in front of them as this is very frustrating. Let them through and then when it is clear jump into a spot behind them.
- Aim to start each and every lap with a good torpedo push off. If you don't know how, check it out here: http://www.feelforthewater.com/2010/03/sunk-without-good-torpedo.html - it will really pay dividends and make you look quite the "pro"!
- When using fins or pull buoys, chances are the speed order (pecking order if you like) of the lane often changes. If you know that you are particularly quick with fins on, don't be afraid to ask to go in front of the person in front of you.
- Aim to pace yourself well, this is ultimately what keeps the lane flowing really well and makes the most out of your own practice time. See how here: http://www.feelforthewater.com/2010/07/poor-pace-awareness-and-how-yours-may.html
- Aim to do your drill and technique work to the best of your ability. Don't feel pressured to rush through this aspect of the session. I will quite regularly slide to the back of the lane in the squad which I swim with when working on my technique, even if it means missing the odd lap. A drill worth doing is a drill worth doing well - please always remember that.
- Try to keep all your kit neatly organised on the pool deck - a mesh kit bag is highly advisable and prevents other swimmers mistakenly walking off or using your kit. Also, naming your kit in bold black marker is ALWAYS worth doing!
- Lastly, be nice to your fellow lane swimmers...it might be early in the morning and you might be a little grumpy normally at this time, but there's never an excuse to get irritable with anyone in the lane. If there's a problem, let the coach know or just diplomatically address it with your swimming buddy. We're all here to have a good time and not feel pressured when we swim.
Thursday, December 2, 2010
- There will be no squad swim session on Saturday at 1pm due to the Busselton Ironman and the Rottnest Swim Thru both taking place. Apologies for any inconvenience here, but I figured most of you would be involved in some capacity in either of these two events. We'll resume Saturdays at 1pm next week (11th December) at the newly opened Claremont Pool. See you then. I won't be at Rotto as previously planned as I'll take the weekend to shake off this sore throat for a good (loud) return to Claremont next week!
- We are going to keep the squad going pretty much right over Christmas for those of you to keep up your fitness for the Rottnest Channel Swim in particular. We'll be having swimming as normal right up until Christmas Eve, take the 25th, 26th, 27th and 28th off and then resume on the 29th, 30th and 31st December. Saturday 1st January will also be cancelled, but then we'll resume on Monday 3rd January to take us into the New Year. Hope that all sounds appealing! I'll remind you all of this closer to the date.
- It has been decided that we will move ALL the sessions back to the Claremont Pool as of Monday 6th December, i.e. next week. Wahoo!
- Thursday's early morning sessions at 5.30am and 6.30am will be moved to Friday as they were originally at this location. I apologise for the inconvenience that this may cause some of you, but despite me having that all locked away since May and confirmed, it seems that we have to run this session on a Friday. I hope you can all still make this "Fresh and Fruity Friday" in the new pool with the awesome new diving blocks (hint, hint...I might just teach you all how to dive over the next few months!)
- Wednesday's 5.30am session will recommence as of next week (8th December) so please be sure to nominate for that if you wish to attend. It's a great session. We'll start off with a little land-based stretching (~10mins) and be in the water then for ~1h20. You can of course get out after 1hr if you so wish. I have put in a request to the pool for us to extend this session to 7.30am and thus make for a 2hr session for you SOLO swimmers if you're keen. My concern for the soloists is doubling up in the Tuesday / Friday sessions with only 3 lanes will leave us tight on space, so if we can offer this long session on the Wednesday and then the long sessions on a Saturday (pool) and Sunday (open water) this will be more than OK. If you just want to develop your endurance as well, this is a great session, so don't think you have to be an aspiring SOLO swimmer to attend!
- Subject to your interest in the new Monday 7am technique swim and the Tuesday 6.30pm session, we should be starting these on the 3rd and 4th of January 2011 respectively. Again, please ensure you nominate for these sessions if you wish to attend.
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
- If we move back to Claremont we will have to change the Thursday 5.30am and 6.30am sessions to a Friday morning (as they originally were before we left). Many of you have liked the balance in the week that a Tuesday / Thursday combo gives you and I am worried that some of you won't be able to make the Friday mornings with such short notice before next week?
- We cannot get more than 3 lanes in any session. At Challenge Stadium we have only officially had 3 lanes booked, but Paul (Head Coach at WAIS) has been very kind to afford us an extra lane from his quota in the last two months as people have started to return after their winter hibernation. Going back down to 3 lanes is going to cause some issues with lane overload and again this is something I want to avoid completely.
- We will be resuming the Monday 7am swim technique session as of 3rd January 2011 (subject to demand, with a minimum of 12 swimmers required).
- We will be resuming the Tuesday 6.30pm squad session as of the 4th January 2011 (subject to demand, with a minimum of 14 swimmers required).
- We will be resuming the Wednesday 5.30am to 7am squad session as of 8th December 2010.
Friday, November 26, 2010
Thursday, November 25, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Exclusive for Triathlon WA members! OWS Clinic Mastery with Shelley Taylor-Smith
All attendees will receive 50% gift voucher for the soon to be released DVD: "OWS Mastery with Shelley Taylor-Smith; How to Eliminate Your Fears, Build Confidence and Improve Your Skills."
OWS Clinics in Perth, Western Australia to help you prepare for the Busselton Ironman 5 December 2010 PLUS clinics for novices through to advanced & professional levels. Triathlon WA... proudly presents this once in a life time opportunity not to be missed....
2 upcoming clinics:
Saturday 20th & Saturday 27th November 2010
Go to http://www.championmindset.com.au/openwaterswimming.htm for booking registration and detailed information.
Friday, November 12, 2010
Now up in Edinburgh where it's very chilly indeed! So far the courses have gone really well, though I have to say I'm missing the larger 50m pools of Perth!
Anyway, quick note today - if anyone is still searching for accommodation for the Busselton Ironman in December, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org who has a house available for rent which might just help get you out of a tight spot if you're frantically looking for somewhere! Thanks to Lisa P for this information!
Hope that helps.
Monday, November 1, 2010
- Monday 1/11 @ 9.30am = Nikki Rogers = a nice set to try today with plenty of variety which will see the time just slip away! Really focus on being relaxed and just slipping through the water!
- Tuesday 2/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Shelley Taylor-Smith = a nice set to try today with plenty of variety which will see the time just slip away! Really focus on being relaxed and just slipping through the water!
- Wednesday 3/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = this session will absolutely whizz by! The variation in interval distances will keep you engaged and focused on swimming well today. Enjoy!
- Thursday 4/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Adam Mullens = this session will absolutely whizz by! The variation in interval distances will keep you engaged and focused on swimming well today. Enjoy!
- Friday 5/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = I love this set to start out a training program - it gets right to the nitty gritty of improving your feel for the water and helping to lengthen out your stroke. You don't need to go crazy long here, just keep it smooth and relaxed with good rhythm!
- Saturday 6/11 @ 1pm = Glen Blackwell = a veritable cocktail of open water skills goodness - come and try, you'll love it!
- Monday 8/11 @ 9.30am = Nikki Rogers = a good solid main set here...think of it as a continuous swim, punctuated with short rests but with the added benefit of being able to really gauge your pacing consistency at sub-threshold level.
- Tuesday 9/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Shelley Taylor-Smith = a good solid main set here...think of it as a continuous swim, punctuated with short rests but with the added benefit of being able to really gauge your pacing consistency at sub-threshold level.
- Wednesday 10/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = today's session is a chance to mix your pace up a bit, both above and below threshold pace. See if you can nail the changes in pace. Good luck!
- Thursday 11/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Adam Mullens = today's session is a chance to mix your pace up a bit, both above and below threshold pace. See if you can nail the changes in pace. Good luck!
- Friday 12/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = I love these technique pyramids - a really simple way to mix things up a little bit and give your whole stroke the once over. After the session today, make a note of what felt really good for you. Focus on this aspect going forward!
- Saturday 13/11 @ 1pm = Ceinwen Williams = The Pocket Rocket will be back today to give you a challenging but beneficial session focused on open water skills and drafting - be there or be...
- Monday 15/11 @ 9.30am = Nikki Rogers = They say that variety is the spice of life and nothing could be further from the truth in this set! Really focus on the middle 100m of the drill set where you are swimming at 80% effort but maintaining good form!
- Tuesday 16/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Shelley Taylor-Smith = They say that variety is the spice of life and nothing could be further from the truth in this set! Really focus on the middle 100m of the drill set where you are swimming at 80% effort but maintaining good form!
- Wednesday 17/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = This is surprisingly tough! This session starts off feeling quite easy (even at threshold pace) but it is very easy to be deceived into believing the whole thing is going to be a dawdle!
- Thursday 18/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Adam Mullens = This is surprisingly tough! This session starts off feeling quite easy (even at threshold pace) but it is very easy to be deceived into believing the whole thing is going to be a dawdle!
- Friday 19/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = By repeating both the warm-up and the main set twice you get the chance to have a good run-through at the drills and technique pointers today. Let your focus be on connecting with the water and achieving a good feel for it!
- Saturday 20/11 @ 1pm = Ceinwen Williams = The Pocket Rocket will be back today to give you a challenging but beneficial session focused on open water skills and drafting - be there or be...
- Monday 22/11 @ 9.30am = Nikki Rogers = This is a nice little session to break up the monotony of longer intervals at a steady pace and is a subtly different set to 2 weeks ago. The 50m intervals will ensure that you stay on your toes and inspire good form!
- Tuesday 23/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Sally Scaffidi = This is a nice little session to break up the monotony of longer intervals at a steady pace and is a subtly different set to 2 weeks ago. The 50m intervals will ensure that you stay on your toes and inspire good form!
- Wednesday 24/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = A chance to really let rip today and see how quickly you can swim without the restriction of the beeper. PFQ = Pretty Flippin' Quick! Enjoy!
- Thursday 25/11 @ 5.30am & 6.30am = Adam Mullens = A chance to really let rip today and see how quickly you can swim without the restriction of the beeper. PFQ = Pretty Flippin' Quick! Enjoy!
- Friday 26/11 @ 9.30am = Sandy Burt = A nice little set today to allow you to focus on connecting a good initial catch of the water with a very smooth body roll.
- Saturday 27/11 @ 1pm = Shelley Taylor-Smith = The Queen of the Open Water will be giving you her top tips and advice on swimming proficiently and strongly in the open water today by practicing some specific skills in the pool - not to be missed!
- For those swimming in the 5.30am and 6.30am sessions, please see http://www.swimsmooth.com/pauls_images/Squad_Names_Paces.pdf as an easy reference to which lane you should be swimming in and at what pace for which session. Hope this helps!
- Please be aware that officially we only have 3 lanes at 5.30am and 6.30am but have been very fortunate that Coach Paul from "WAIS" has kindly been donating one of his lanes to us over the last 4 weeks. This is not guaranteed however and all the coaches have been briefed that we may actually have to squash into 3 lanes at times. Your help and cooperation here is much appreciated.
- A quick reminder that the 5.30am and 6.30am sessions actually (officially) start at 5.35am and 6.35am respectively to allow you time to get down to the pool from the main reception.
- Typically all sessions will be in the Outdoor 8 lane pool at Challenge Stadium, except for Friday 5th November at 9.30am which will be in the Outdoor 10 lane pool. Please keep an eye on the white boards for further information.
- Most of you have recently purchased additional PAYG cards for whilst I am away which is really appreciated and will help the smooth running of the program in my absence. If you do still need some cards or find that you have run out whilst I am away, please either pay online at http://www.swimsmooth.com/perth_buycard.html and bring your online receipt to the pool in order for the coaches to issue you your card(s) or pay in cash on the pool deck. Online payment is preferred and easiest for everyone concerned for your reference.
- We are due back at Claremont Pool from Monday 6th December onwards.
Monday, October 25, 2010
- It's Alive Doctor!!! - you've probably already noticed the new Swim Smooth branding on these Blogs, however, I'm extremely excited to be able to tell you that we've been busy beavering away with creating some new Perth specific pages for the www.swimsmooth.com website. Here you'll find updated information on the squad timetable, 1-2-1 Video Analysis availability, online PAYG card purchasing, our free Rottnest Program guide for download etc etc. We will still maintain the original www.theteamcore.com website until ~April 2011 as I know some of you still use the vast array of technical information and resources there for your triathlon endeavours, however, today really signifies the rebranding of the squad to become known as "Swim Smooth Perth" going forwards and I'm very happy for you guys to all be part of this. When we return to Claremont Pool in December, things will all feel very fresh and renewed indeed! For now, enjoy the look and feel of the new site!
- Saturday - as advertised, we will be holding a technique seminar and pool practical session this Saturday at Challenge Stadium and would love for you and your interested friends to join us. There has been a minor re-scheduling of this session as follows: meet at 10.50am in the "Crabs Palace" at the deep end of the Outdoor 8 lane pool by lane 8 for an 11am start. We'll be in the classroom until 12.15pm before a short break and starting the practical session at 12.30pm. This will actually be in the Outdoor 10 lane pool. The topic we'll be looking at in the classroom will be a quick run-through of the theory behind an efficient freestyle stroke in the pool but then take you through some of our most recent work and findings on how to develop this stroke for efficient open water swimming. We'll then do a 1.5hr session in the pool working on these aspects and fine tuning your strokes. It will be a LOT of fun and VERY interesting. This will be perfect for anyone considering doing a triathlon, the Rottnest Channel swim or any of the open water races this season, so please try to attend if you can. We're aiming to have most of the coaches on deck who'll be assisting me whilst I'm away in November for 3 weeks in the UK as we're super keen to ensure that everyone gets chance to meet them and enjoy working with their individual coaching styles. Cost for the whole 3hr Clinic will be just two ticks off your card, or if you're bringing a non-squad friend just $50 for them. We didn't have many responses to the request to let me know you're coming when I last sent this out so hopefully this is of interest to you and you can attend - please let me know if you plan to be there. Those wishing to only come for the practical session can do so, but please note the 30 minutes earlier start time (12:30pm) and the Outdoor 10 lane pool location.
- Sunday - first open water race of the season: Rockingham. Entries open to 5pm tomorrow (Tuesday 26th October). Choose from 1.25km, 2.5km, or 5km. Full details at http://www.openwaterswimming.com.au/default.asp?PageID=20440 - there's a note on legal race suits here: http://www.wa.swimming.org.au/articles/article.asp?topicID=1&articleID=4740 and http://www.swimclub.com.au/fina_approved_swimsuits.html (P.S It looks like non of the regular Blue Seventy body suits are included on that list, but worth bringing on the day and we'll enquire...). Hope to see you there! Rotto soloists should enter for the 5km event. Racing starts at 8am and registration is between 6am and 7am.
- Paul Away in the UK - as mentioned previously, I will be away in the UK from Monday 1st November to Thursday 25th November inclusive. My sister is getting married in Edinburgh and myself and Adam are the official photographers which will be fun! We're also conducting a completely sold-out Swim Smooth Clinic tour and 3-day Coaches Education Course for the British Triathlon Federation which I'm personally super excited about, especially as we have some super-star elite swimmers lined up for the course which will make things very challenging for the coaches!! It's an absolute honour for me to return to the UK and be running these courses in recognition of the hard work we've been putting into our online Swim Smooth website over the past six years and I always feel like my coaching benefits from it as a result, and therefore directly passes onto you guys upon my return. As always, we've set up a great group of coaches to assist in my absence all of whom are fully briefed on the protocols and will ensure you all can maintain some great swimming whilst I'm away. My only concern is that you guys in our Rottnest Solo squad will be kicking my butt upon my return as my swimming may be a little limited whilst I'm away!! LOL!
- PAYG Cards - as per previous times when I've been away for a short trip to the UK, can I please request that if you're running low on credits on your PAYG card and think you may run out during the period 1st to 29th November, please can you ensure you purchase a new card this week at swimming (in cash) or online at http://www.swimsmooth.com/perth_buycard.html and we'll just extend the expiry out for you by one month. Doing so this week will help us to streamline the whole process whilst I'm away in the UK and your support of this initiative is very much appreciated.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
- DRAFTING. I decided to change the format of the main set so that everyone did a 1000m swim. We did this in "indian-line" drafting formation for the benefit of those who will be doing the open water race series this year and also for those who've not yet tried the Saturday afternoon 1pm session where we regularly practice this. You all found that you swam either a) a lot faster, or b) a lot easier for a given level of speed. This was typically as much as 60 to 90s difference compared to your time trial performances just 3 weeks ago - so quite considerable and well worth your attention. Far too often though I hear well meaning people saying "get off to a fast start and find some clear water for yourself!" whereas in reality "clear water" is the very last thing you want to find in an open water race as chance are everyone else is on your toes or you're massively off course and heading out to sea! Drafting well can save you up to 38% of the energy cost of swimming by yourself, so is always worthwhile practicing.
- ATTENDANCE. We try to limit these sessions to 24 people (i.e. 8 to a lane) but have a buffer of 3 to 6 people, i.e. there might be as many as 27 or 30 people in the session on occasion. Typically though the 5.30am session averages 21 and the 630am session averages 18 / 19 people. It is very important though (please) that if you ordinarily come along at 6.30am that you stick with this time slot, as it only takes 3 or 4 people to pop along to a different session and all of a sudden we seem quite busy. I think that this is what happened this morning. Your help with managing this (as always) is much appreciated. Maybe just drop me a quick SMS or email to let me know prior that this is your intention? I don't want to scare anyone off obviously, but equally I'm trying to manage the lane space availability as best as possible and always want you guys to all have the best session possible. For some reason the lack of a shallow end at Challenge Stadium seems to magnify this effect especially when I'm asking everyone to pop their fins on at the same time!!
- TIME TABLE. As per last week's email notification which included our new time table for Monday 6th December onwards (see http://www.swimsmooth.com/pauls_images/Squad_Timetable.pdf ) you'll notice that we'll be bringing back the Tuesday 6.30pm and Wednesday 5.30am sessions. This increase in session availability will hopefully help distribute the attendance nicely throughout the week and offer greater variety and specificity for the type of sessions we can offer. In the next few weeks I'll be posting out a "register your interest" in these sessions to tentatively allocate you a space in a given session with priority being given to those who've swum through the winter. Watch out for that one!
- SETTING OFF. Here's another interesting one, especially those of you new to squad swimming - most swim squads will operate with a 5s or 10s interval between each swimmer in order to maximise on lane space availability. Typically we use 5s intervals unless I suggest otherwise, but all too often this tends to concertina-up (the "magneto effect" I like to call it!) and we end up using just 25 or 30m of the 100m available to us in a 50m pool. Comparatively, at 10s apart in a lane swimming at 1:30 per 100m this would allow 9 swimmers to swim in ample space. In a lane swimming at 1:45 per 100m this would be 10 or 11 swimmers, and in a lane swimming at 2:00 per 100m this would be a good 12 swimmers with enough space between each swimmer to feel unpressured by someone tickling their toes. Just like drafting practice is important, so too is having your own free space when you're doing drills or doing a solo time trial etc. This spacing is what keeps a lane manageable and it's incredibly easy to achieve once everyone knows where they're at with it. We'll do a little practice varying this up at bit over the next few weeks and see how we go. What you've really got to pity is those poor souls in the UK swimming in 20 or 25m pools with 10 people to a lane - now that's busy! The feeling of "I've got to keep up!" is what sends most of us off like the clappers to catch the person in front of us all the time, whereas in reality it'd often be better to just focus on maintaining that gap a little like driving on the freeway.
- PAYG CARDS. Finally, just a polite reminder here to ask you to always please remember to have your PAYG card with you at each session and treat this system as you would gaining pool entry to Challenge Stadium itself. Unfortunately the PAYG card system is not yet digital and whilst you're all pretty good at reminding me if you owe a tick here or there, it does start to get a little tricky to manage with the increasing numbers in the summer season etc. Thanks again for your support on this as I know it can be a pain to remember so many things at 5.30am!!
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Friday, September 24, 2010
- Saturday 25th September at 1pm
- Monday 27th September at 9.30am
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Back in 2004 a new athlete joined our squad who wanted to prepare for the inaugural Busselton Ironman. That athlete was Glen Blackwell who would later go on to knocking off over 3 hours off his previous best Ironman finish and in 2008 be awarded our coveted "Good Shepherd" award for his services to the squad and his enthusiasm for helping others within the squad achieve their goals.
Late last year Glen qualified to represent Australia at the World Triathlon Championships in Budapest, Hungary, and he did exceedingly well with a Personal Best over the Olympic Distance of 1.5km swim, 40km bike and a 10km run in a time of 2:07 - no mean fete.
Glen has very kindly pieced together his story of the day's events to shed some light on his experiences and also the beautiful city of Budapest which I thought you'd all enjoy on this sunny Tuesday afternoon. Here goes - well done Glen:
The ITU World Triathlon Championships for 2010 was to be held in Budapest Hungry. This was to be a beautiful and exciting location for a race and the lure attracted me to have a shot at the Australian Team.
On arrival the weather was great for the first two days. I managed to get out for a long run on the first morning and see the town. Was surreal to be running past Castles and Cathedrals on the banks of the (not so) Blue Danube.
I managed to get together with a few guys from the Australian team and we went for a ride to the designated training area. A little island on in the river with one road of about 2.5kms in length. It was wet and lumpy and very boring as it didn't even make a loop. Just up turn around and back. But it was much safer than playing in the traffic. Needless to say 1hr of that and I was mentally cooked so road along the rivers edge taking in the sights instead.
The rain then started and did not let up for the rest of the week. The sprint races on the saturday got drenched and I went to bed that night expecting to be soaked by the end of the race.
Waking on race morning the Tri-gods had smiled. There was no wind, no rain and the sun came out giving us the warmest day at 23 degrees.
Getting dressed in the green and Gold to represent my country was awesome start to the day and definitely helped get the nerves going.
Especially when I got to the start line and saw all the other countries that were lined up. I was in the second biggest wave start with 125 others on the pontoon.
Getting into the water was a bit hard as the temp was a cool 14 degrees. But the water was flat no current and actually tasted clean. I had a great swim of 22:40 putting me out of the water into T1 in 37th... The the fun. On exiting my zip broke and I spent just over 3minutes tearing my wetsuit to get it off..One of the longest transition times for my group.
The ride was dead flat however the road conditions were terrible for at least 4km of the 13km loop. There were grand canyon cracks running parallel to your travel and lumps, bumps and man hole covers. The only good thing was when you got to the back 9kms you could get down onto the areo bars and go fast.
Getting into T2 i found that I had also broken my left bike shoe halfway found the course and it was just hanging on by the tip.
Well onto the run for the most scenic run I have ever had. We went 5kms up along the bank of the Danube past the university, and the Castle before turning onto the historic Chain Bridge (Think a similar style to the Tower Bridge London). Once here we commenced two 2.5km laps for the rest of the 10km run.
This lap went past the race finish of Roosevelt Square on the river bank then through the paved malls of the town to the open square in front of St Francis Cathedral where you turned almost on the steps before heading back over Chain Bridge to do the lap again.
Coming into the finish chute was awesome with the noise, people, camera crews and even a chopper flying above.
However at the end of the day I P.B'd with a 2:07:34 and most importantly was able to say I represented my country on the world stage..That was the clincher.
Monday, September 20, 2010
- Saturday 25th September at 1 to 2pm.
- Monday 27th September at 9.30am to 10.30am*.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
- A total of 89 swimmers from the squad have now tested themselves over the 1000m distance in the past two months. This is ~50% of the squad membership.
- 36 swimmers were tested on 13th July 2010 - view all the results at: http://www.theteamcore.com/images/1km_TT_13_07_10.pdf
- 68 swimmers were tested on the 14th September 2010 - view all the results at: http://www.theteamcore.com/images/1km_TT_14_09_10.pdf
- 21 swimmers attended both test sessions and thus qualified to enter our winter "Biggest Loser" competition, whereby there was a 100% improvement across the group!
- The fastest recorded male time was by James Forbes in 13'27"
- The fastest recorded female time was by Ceinwen Williams in 13'47"
- The average pace of the squad is exactly 18'00" for the 1000m distance
- My predicted improvement (as a percentage) for those who re-tested and regularly swam 2-4 sessions per week for the 2 months was 3.0%
- The actual average improvement of the Biggest Loser group (as a percentage) was 3.9%
- The Biggest Loser was Silke Highet who improved by an astounding 2'57" in just two months - equivalent to 13.6%!! Well done Silke!! Silke wins a Swim Smooth waterproof Training Plan as per http://www.swimsmooth.com/trainingplans.html to keep her ticking over at times when she cannot attend the squad, e.g. school holidays etc.
- Also doing well for the guys was Andy Bolt with a 7.8% improvement!! Andy wins a copy of the Swim Smooth DVD Boxset (as seen at http://www.swimsmooth.com/DVD.html ) to help him refine his stroke even further!
- You can view all the Biggest Loser results at: http://www.theteamcore.com/images/Biggest_Loser_14_09_10.pdf
Monday, September 6, 2010
Just a quick one to let you know that the indoor 50m pool is now back to normal (ie 50m and not 2 x 25m) and as a result on Thursday mornings we will now be swimming in the outdoor 8 lane pool instead (lanes 2 to 4 I believe). Tuesdays remain as normal (so I believe).
Also, now that it's finally starting to warm up and people are coming out of the woodwork we just need to try and manage numbers in the squad sessions as best as possible so that it doesn't get too busy too quickly. If you are planning your come back and have been irregular over the last 3 months, please would you mind dropping me a brief email to say which sessions you plan to re-attend. Priority in the sessions will be given to those who've been swimming over winter, but please help me by letting me know your intentions to smooth this spring transition for everyone. Thanks!
Finally, I will be away on Saturday for the 1pm squad session as it is my birthday and Mish and Jackson are taking me away for a surprise weekend away. I can't wait. Coach Nikki Rogers from Sorrento SLSC will be taking the session and putting you through your paces in this fun open water skills session. Please make her feel welcome and go along and pick up some top tips from this Commonwealth Games medallist and uber swimmer!!
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Just to let you know that Mark Scanlon successfully completed his English Channel Swim attempt on the 31st August after waiting through nearly 3 weeks of bad weather and had to change pilots (skipper) at significant cost just to ensure a swim start.
Stay tuned to www.stroke4stroke.com.au for Mark's post event report soon.
Well done Mark - brilliant result! 9.5 hours in rough conditions!
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
- Trevor Magee's best 1km swim time last year was 16:40. 5 weeks ago he went 17:30 and like most people in the squad was a little off the pace from last summer (to be expected really given the winter we've had). Today Trevor posted a 16:54 to improve by 36 seconds or nearly 4 seconds per 100m which is a very good sign of improvement indeed. Well done Trevor!
- James Forbes's best 1km swim time last year was 13:47 (peak season). 5 weeks ago James did 14:01. Today he smashed that and not only beat his record from 5 weeks ago, but went faster than last season to go 13:28. This knocks Ceinwen William's off the squad top perch by 2 seconds (which no doubt will be fuel for motivation there!). Without a doubt, consistency through the winter shining through here - well done Forbsey!
- Silke Highet swam 21:39 for her 1km swim 5 weeks ago which is an average pace of 2:10 per 100m. This morning, Silke very easily swam a 600m and then a 500m averaging 1:55 per 100m which is a sure sign that when we retest everyone's Time Trials properly in the middle of September, Silke could be in the running for that coveted "Biggest Loser" award, won last year by Lucas Salter. Good luck Silke!
- Gillian Evans featured in the Blog above about the pull buoy set and what it can tell you about your stroke. 5 weeks ago Gillian swam 1km in 20:39 which she was pleasantly surprised with but eager to break the 20 minute marker. On Monday Gillian led the lane for 600m and comfortably averaged 1:59 per 100m which will see her ducking under the 20 minute marker in a few weeks time quite nicely. How did Gillian (a "Kicktastic") do it? Surprisingly enough by reducing her leg kick in favour of an improved catch. Nice work Gillian!