Thursday, August 27, 2009

A reminder and Saturday's Ride

Dear Athletes

In case you didn't see it on Thursday, please be advised of the confirmed summer squad list at:

Please let me know if I have any of your details wrong or choices incorrect.

Also, as Sunday is the big day for many of you doing the City to Surf, on Saturday we shall meet at 6.30am at the Bell Tower for a nice, cruisey and enjoyable ride around the river with a stop at Daisies if you're lucky! Hope you can make it.



Swim Smooth is Website of the Week!

Dear Athletes

Thought you might be keen to know that this week our website was named "Website of the Week" by the
Ironman Talk podcast. You can listen to their discussion of our site

...its Episode 174 and the discussion starts at about 29'00" - if its
not there when you first click this link, it will be in the next few

...Website of the Week is a vote by all the independent Ironman
athletes around the world and as you'll hear John and Bevan saying,
they were inundated with votes for our site which is really great
considering how much work we put (and continue to put) into it. We
were thrilled with this award.

Also, we did an interview with USA's leading fitness and nutrition
health expert Ben Greenfield. You can listen to that interview at:
(starting at about 50'00")

We were also featured on the following two Blogs in the last week as

...this one entitled, "Move Over Michael Phelps, hello Mr Smooth!"

Just to keep you posted!



Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Confirmed Squad List for Summer 2009/2010

Dear Swimmers

Hope you are all enjoying the lovely sunshine! As promised, please click on the link below to access the Confirmed Squad List for Summer 2009 / 2010 with The TEAM CORE down at the Claremont Swimming Pool:

Please check the list and if you have any questions or queries please email them over to me direct.

What is the "Buffer List"?

It has been a bit of a long-winded process compiling the list and I hope that I have got you all down for the sessions that you wish to attend. As mentioned in previous emails we have set-up a Buffer List for each session. If your name is on the Buffer List you can attend the session, no worries there! The idea of the Buffer List is to simply recognize that not everyone will turn up to every session they have nominated for. Rather than restrict you to having to pay all your fees upfront (and in doing so effectively pay for sessions that you do not attend) the Buffer List provides us with the assurance that we will have a good stream of numbers attending the sessions and that we aren't turning anyone away unnecessarily, and equally for you to have the flexibility to use your PAYG cards exactly as they were intended - to Pay As You Go!

We have also set up a Reserve List for those who have not made it onto the Buffer List. Please, please, please though let me know if you are on the Confirmed or Buffer List for any session incorrectly or if you have changed your mind so that I can jiggle things around and offer someone a place in the squad. Your help here is much appreciated and equally (going forward) please let me know if you no longer plan to attend any of these sessions.

For the bike and run sessions and also the Saturday morning swim sessions, there are no real restrictions on attendance to these sessions as they are currently free. Please do let me know though if your name is not down and if you'd like to attend so that I can monitor interest.

Payments / Costings:

There have been a few of you whom have requested paying upfront for your session fees and sacrificing missed sessions if you do so. Your reasoning has been either to a) save a few pennies with a bulk purchase and / or b) to save the "hassle" of a card. What we have decided to do to address this is two-fold:

1) raise your awareness of our bulk discount PAYG cards, i.e. 10 sessions = $100, 25 sessions = $225, 50 sessions = $400. This then works out at $10, $9 and $8 per session which can add up to a big saving in the long run. You can order these cards online at

2) offer a package deal for those of you keen on registering for our Rottnest Channel Swim and Busselton Half Ironman Programs. These start on the 7th September 2009 and 18th January 2010 respectively. These will allow you access to the sessions that you have nominated for and to the overview of the session detail. Cost for these will be $660 for the 24 week Rottnest Channel Swim Program (based on 4 weekly paid squad swim sessions at a discounted rate of $7.50 per session; there will be a period of 2 weeks over Christmas when no sessions will run, so that would be 22 weeks x $30 per week = $660) and $595 for the 15 week Busselton Half Ironman Program (based on 2 weekly squad swims, 1 bike, 1 run and 1 coached brick session: there will be other sessions available for you to attend, but these will be the full coached ones).

GST Registration:

Just on that note about monies an effort to keep the squad sessions that you attend as cost effective as possible for you to attend on a regular basis, you may be interested to know that we have recently had to register as a GST collecting entity and as such our accountant has suggested that we need to ADD GST to all our services and products. However, we have decided to take the bold move to actually "swallow" this cost ourselves in an effort to thank you for your support over the last 12 months which has in no small way contributed to the GST situation which we are now faced with. Hopefully the busy sessions that we have lined up will help to offset this cost for us somewhat. We do hope that this is agreeable for yourselves!!



Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A message of thanks from Jackson (& Mum & Dad!)

Dad also promises to get the confirmed squad list out this week, so please watch this space!


The Newsomes

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Squad List Update

Dear Swimmers

Many thanks for completing the Squad Registration List at 

We have had an overwhelming response with over 110 of you submitting this form. This is an amazing response and we really thank you for your support! Its just so great to see what started off as such a small group a little over 12 months ago become such a strong TEAM and a fun environment within which to train. Thanks guys, its great to be coaching all of you!

I shall be publishing the Confirmed List tomorrow with any luck. Suffice to say I have just about managed to get everyone who has been regular over the winter period into the sessions that they want. For those of you who we haven't seen for a while, I've also managed to get you in, but will confirm all these details tomorrow and by all means email me with any queries.

There are a couple of sessions:

  • Tuesday 7.30am
  • Thursday 3.30pm
  • Friday 7.30am

...which don't yet have the numbers to proceed, but I will keep the applications to these sessions open and keep you posted in due course. Let me know if any of these appeal.

We have also hand a really great response from 5 or 6 coaches around WA who would like to be part of the program and coach alongside us. As mentioned before, each coach will be thoroughly screened and tutored by myself during our Training Day (date TBC) and on an ongoing basis so that we can assure the highest level of coaching can continue. The idea and thought behind this scheme is two-fold: 

  1. To aid the development of the program and the development of coaches under our "banner".
  2. To provide you with a bit of variety in coaching styles, albeit with the same ethos and program to hand.

All these coaches will attend our Training Day and also "work shadow" with us on pool deck over the next few months to ensure continuity of practice. During the odd times when myself and Adam might be away (we need holidays too!), the new coaches will assist us with the smooth running of the program, ensuring you get the very best coaching that you deserve and on a consistent basis.

Interestingly enough, when I posed the question back in November "would you benefit from having an additional coach on pool deck with Paul?" the response was typically "no, don't think we need it"; however, I know that you all have now grown to greatly appreciate the benefit of having Adam poolside with me and can hopefully see the advantages of having additional coaches to help build and improve the program further.

If you're interested to read a little more about how we're doing this on an international scale through Swim Smooth, please check out - we've had over 300 coaches worldwide sign up already with us on our list plus over 40 as part of the full Network.

Anyway, Confirmation List to follow tomorrow - watch this space!



Friday, August 14, 2009

Making it as a F.O.P Ironman Athlete

Dear Athletes

As you know I'm a bit of a geek when it comes to web-surfing etc and am often on the scout-around for interesting tidbits of information that some of you might find useful and valuable. Well today's tidbit is probably only going to be of serious interest to a very small percentage of you, but I'm sure you'd all enjoy reading the following article if you've ever thought:

"Wow! That guy / girl at work has done an Ironman, works 60hrs per week, has a family and two small children and still seems to fit it all in. How do they do it, year-in, year-out?! WHY do they do it, year-in, year-out?!"

Now this article could just as easily be about endurance swimming events or marathon runs etc, but at what is typically at least 3 times the required training volume to complete an Ironman event the ramifications that this has on your daily routine can be quite a bit more profound.

Personally I'm all about "balance" in my approach to training, family, work and social life and would hope that those that I inspire and help with my coaching would hold those same values as well. I'm not anti-Ironman by any stretch of the imagination - I'm currently helping 6 really great athletes with their programs for various IM events around the world and am enjoying every minute of this process and hopefully they are too. Equally though, I have seen over the years good people become too engrossed in ultra-distance events to the point at which this balance can often fall apart. If you recognise this fact and can make appropriate adjustments, then OK, that's great. 

What the article talks about though is just what it takes in terms of a number value to go from doing your first Ironman event to trying to qualify for the so-called pinnacle of the sport, the Hawaiian Ironman in Kona. This goal can often escape people for many, many (many) years and is becoming harder and harder each year to qualify for. I think the point of the article is not to rubbish the idea or say that it is a futile exercise but to say "hey, this thing is going to take time, patience, persistence and commitment to that goal - if you recognise that, great, let's go along for the ride!"

Anyway, I thought it was a really great article and one which struck a chord on many levels. It also made me think that within the world of triathlon there is often the belief that unless you've done an Ironman and done it well and maybe even qualified for Kona that you haven't really succeeded. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to do that myself (one day) but I would encourage those of you new to the sport to look at getting good at the shorter distances first rather than feeling you have to jump up to Ironman immediately. We have the World Olympic Distance Triathlon Championships in Queensland in September and then the World Long Course Triathlon Championships here in Perth in October - both awesome events to be part of or aim to qualify for in the future which might not "break the camel's back" so to speak. 

You could obviously read what I and the author Alan Couzen have written as saying "mediocrity is OK" and that this is hardly the true Aussie Spirit of the "underdog done good", however I am hoping that by posting this link this will touch you in one of three ways 1) to recognise the time commitment that such a goal takes and plan accordingly if this is what you want to do; 2) to see value in events that might not be the whole Ironman distance; 3) to realise that the critical component in succeeding in your goals is consistency and in no small part of that enjoyment must play a huge factor - if there's no love there, don't do it.

Oh yeah - enough waffle, here's the post:



Thursday, August 13, 2009

Saturday Ride

Dear Athletes

It looks like it could be quite nasty out there on Saturday - however, if it is OK we plan to do this ride:

We'll meet at the Bell Tower at 6.30am and the faster group will first ride up into Kings Park, do a loop there and then try and catch the first group before the end of the ride. Should be fun - might even be a sprint to the Bell Tower! LOL! ;-)



Quick Reminder

Dear Athletes

Just a quick reminder to complete the summer squad registration form at to confirm your spot in the various summer squad sessions. It will only take you 2-3 minutes and if you haven't been down for a while please let us know when you intend to be back (on this form) so we can manage the numbers and ensure no-one misses out!!! We've had over 80 replies so far so please do get back to us asap.

Just to confirm, there has been some call to make the Thursday morning session at Cottesloe Beach (starting on the 1st October) to be held at 6.00am as opposed to the previously stated 6.30am start. More than happy to work with this ensuring those of you who need to get off to work can do and those with children can get back in time for the school run. Once all the squads are fully confirmed I'll include this in the amended schedule.

Also, we will spend 10 minutes at the end of Monday 9.30am and the three Tuesday sessions (5.30am, 6.30am and 6.15pm) next week doing some tumble-turn practice as requested by at least 80% of you! Good stuff, please try to be there!

Cheers and thanks for your support!


Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Dear Athletes

Its looking decidely grizzly on the weather radar for cycling this morning and as such I think I will personally aim to ride later. If you go out, please be safe!

If you stay home or have a spare moment at work today, why not visit where you will be able to watch / download a series of 8 or 9 short video clips about the Tour de France. These are a documentary following the Cervelo Test Team and are highly recommended - I loved watching them. Enjoy!



Monday, August 10, 2009

Register for the NEW Summer Sessions!

Dear Athletes,

Please take 5 minutes to complete the registration form to let us know which sessions you plan to attend over the summer period in order to best cater for your coaching needs. EVERYONE needs to do this please so that we can balance numbers effectively. Thanks for your assistance!

We will introduce these changes in 3 phases and offer 2 full squad programs over the summer - Rottnest Channel Swim & Busselton Half Ironman:

Phase 1 = introduction of a 4th lane in the Tuesday & Friday 6.30am sessions. Effective Tuesday 11th August onwards.

Phase 2 = introduction of the new weekly pool swim sessions which will help to cater and balance expected demand. Effective from Monday 7th September onwards (subject to demand - please specify your interest).

Phase 3 = introduction of the summer ocean swim sessions on a Thursday (6.30am) and Saturday (8.00am). Thursday will be suited to those doing triathlons over the summer. Saturday will be suited to those doing the Rottnest Solo or Duo swim. Effective from 1st and 3rd October respectively.

Rottnest Channel Swim Program = this will commence on Monday 7th September (24 weeks) for Solo swimmers, Monday 5th October for Duo Swimmers (20 weeks) and Monday 2nd November for Team swimmers (16 weeks). Please register your interest in the form below. Swimmers registering for these programs will be able to take advantage of our "multi-buy" session facility and pay upfront for the entire program saving you a substantial amount of money and allowing you unlimited access to what will be 15 squad swim sessions per week! No other swim program in WA offers you this much value, flexibility and above all, quality. We hope you will choose to sign up with us! Full details to follow soon!

Busselton Half Ironman Program = this will commence on Monday 15th January 2010 (15 weeks) and will feature 3 swims, 3 cycles, 3 runs and 1 brick session per week as part of the package. We have decided to extend the free period on our current squad cycle and run sessions, but will bring back a fee for these sessions as part of the package once full coaching resumes in mid-January. Watch this space for more details, but please register your details in the form below as space will be limited!

Here are some notes about the improvements / additions to the squad for the summer period:

NEW sessions will be run subject to demand, so if you are keen on attending these sessions please let us know in the form below. The new sessions are:

Monday 7am (commencing 7th September) = Swim: Kick-start your week with a great session split as 50% pure technique work and 50% pace awareness work. Our other squad sessions are typcially weighted to one over the other. This 50/50 split is the ideal way to start your week and break you out of the "Weekend Zombie" feeling. 7 out of 10 for effort.

Thursday 6.30am (commencing 1st October) = Swim: Wahey! No more Daylight Savings!!! Welcome back THE best session of the week - the Thursday morning open water skills and drills session at Cottesloe Beach followed by a muffin at Daisies. Why is this so good? Just simply an excellent chance to practice some well-needed open water specific skills such as sighting, drafting and swimming straight. Well worth getting out of bed for!

Thursday 3.30pm (commencing 10th September) = Swim: for Stockbrokers and those who get off work early! This is a new concept for those who operate on flexi-time and require a little more stroke technique TLC. The squad will be limited to 12 people max and given the greater 1-2-1 nature of this session will incur a $20 per session fee or 2 ticks on your PAYG card. Well worth it if you can make it. We'll have access to video analysis when needed and the session will be about refining your technique as opposed to knocking out the big K's, so actual distance covered will be relatively small.

Friday 4.30pm (commencing 11th September) = Swim: for all you Rottnest Solo and Duo swimmers out there, this is the session you've been waiting for! Part of mine and Ceinwen's success in the 2009 Rottnest Channel Swim was down to a once weekly distance session we did on a Wednesday lunchtime which built gradually from 4km up to 14km. Longer intervals all at pre-determined Rotto pace. Incredibly tediuous in the pool by yourself but with a small group is great and entirely essential to your success in the race. The advantage of this session in the pool is that we can really hone-in on our pace awareness skills and practice race nutrition, both essential ingredients! All finished off with a pizza and beer - you can't say fairer than that!

Saturday 8.00am (commencing 3rd October) = Swim: another one for those swimming to Rotto. Despite the long, tough session on the Friday evening, we'll back up with a steady swim in the ocean each Saturday morning which will be chance to get a long continuous swim in whilst a little fatigued. This will be a great way to prepare safely for the latter 30% of the channel swim when you start to get tired. We will build from 3 to 10km in this session.

4 LANES. We have managed to secure a 4th lane from 6.45am on a Tuesday and Friday morning. This is great news. Swimmers attending the 6.30am session will warm up in 3 lanes, but we now have the ability to use a 4th lane for the last 45 minutes in order to manage numbers over summer. Unfortunately we will not have this facility in the 5.30am, 7.30am or 9.30am sessions, so if you would like a little extra space, please nominate for the 6.30am sessions below. This will be especially beneficial for those of you who normally swim in lane 2 (i.e. middle lane).

SESSION SIZES. We will be aiming to restrict session sizes to 24 people (or ~ 8 per lane) with the exception of a Tuesday & Friday 6.30am session where we have the capacity now to have up to 32 swimmers. It is absolutely imperative that you register your interest in these sessions below ASAP to avoid missing out. Priority will be given to those who have consistently swum with us over the winter period in the event of over-subscription. Your help and support is much appreciated in this respect. We will operate with a "buffer" of 2 people per lane when collating numbers given the flexible nature of the card system. This has worked very well in the past - occassionally we will have up to 2 extra people per lane on peak mornings (i.e. good weather), but typically this tends to balance out with the quieter mornings (i.e. poor weather). TIP: get down when its raining! ;-)

ABILITY LEVELS. Essentially we now have 5 lanes of ability in the squad. In the Time:4:Me sessions at 9.30am on a Monday, Wednesday and a Friday, the three lanes equate to levels 1, 2 and 3. In the 5.30am, 7.30am and 6.15pm sessions the lanes equate to levels 2, 3 and 4. In the new 6.30am Tuesday and Friday sessions, the lanes equate to levels 2, 3, 4 & 5. To give you an idea of the pace that each level swims at to check the suitability for you, see below:

Level 1 = 2:04 to 2:30 per 100m

Level 2 = 1:48 to 2:00 per 100m

Level 3 = 1:32 to 1:46 per 100m

Level 4 = 1:20 to 1:30 per 100m

Level 5 = 1:12 to 1:20 per 100m

ADDITIONAL COACHING STAFF. It is my great pleasure to announce that owing to the substantial growth in the squad over the past 12 months (and even over winter!), we have decided to branch out and employ some additional coaching staff to help us with the smooth running of the program over the summer. Rather than just scramble to get anyone in though, we are enforcing a rigorous selection and coach mentoring criteria for all interested parties to ensure our high standard of coaching continues on into the new sessions and with the existing ones too. We will be running a 2-day Coaches Workshop in the next month for all interested parties which will ensure that everyone we take on is prepped in our philosophies and coahcing practices. Rather than "water-down" our coaching though, we envisage that this practice will add some new life and spark into the program. Anyone interested in being part of The TEAM CORE's Coaching Staff can apply using the Coaches Network Form here. Equally, if you know of anyne who would be keen to get involved, please forward them this page and ask them to get in touch with me.

Please note, when completing the online registration form, DO NOT USE your "ENTER" or "RETURN" keys to navigate down the form; instead use either your mouse cursor or the "TAB" key to move to each new field. Segments of the questionnaire will not be recorded if the ENTER key is hit within the form, so to avoid losing 'work', DON'T HIT ENTER. Thankyou!

Thanks for your time & support everyone!


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Old Age Strikes!!! Argh!

Dear Athletes

Please be advised that I shall be absent for the next 6 weeks worth of running sessions. For those of you who have been regularly running with us on a Monday and Thursday evening and cycling on a Wednesday and Saturday morning, you'll be used to my whinging over my sore achilles tendon which I put down to old age and not taking enough of my own medicine and easing back into things gradually!!!

Suffice to say I've got to the point where its just not getting any better and as such I won't personally be attending the run sessions for the next 6 weeks and might also miss the occasional cycle ride as well in order to get myself back on track. Sorry about that.

Never one to let you down though, I have prepared full details of all the bike and run sessions for the next 6 weeks (a total of 24 sessions) that you can view and download here:

The hope is that you will all continue to meet up as usual and benefit from the camaraderie and motivation that is inspired from training with The TEAM CORE.

I am hoping to regain a bit of consistency through some rehab and basic strengthening work and in the process partake in a little Consistency Challenge of my own which I hope will also serve beneficial to some of you in the future starting back after some time off. I'll keep you posted with this little experiment in due course.

As you're no doubt aware, numbers in the squad swim sessions have really started to pick back up again. I will be meeting with the Claremont Pool management today to discuss adding some additional swim sessions to our program due to the popularity we are seeing. It is very important to us that our numbers are kept at a manageable level to ensure the highest standard of coaching possible. Please bare with us whilst we enhance the program in light of this demand.

Lastly, some of you may have seen the flier at Claremont Pool advertising a 10km Relay Challenge on Sunday 18th October: This will be an ideal kick-start to your Rottnest Channel Swim campaign. Teams can be comprised of 4 to 8 people with an individual section also due to be announced. Get your entries in soon as this is sure to be very popular!