Thursday, February 17, 2011

Aero Swimming

I finally got a chance to play with my new aerobars! I finished wrapping them last night and had to get an unusual evening ride in since I skipped the previous day. I also picked up taller spacers for the arm rest to bump me up a bit higher.

Immediately my shoulders felt much better. The wider stance of these aerobars allowed my shoulders to not sit against the 'inner edge' of my joint. The relief from the pressue was welcomed, however while my back and shoulders felt great, the pain moved to my wrists lol! Not so much pain, but a strange lack of range of motion. The angle in my wrist needed to grab the pars is just a bit beyond what my wrists comfortably can do. I played a bit with my wrist positions but haven't given up yet. I think I'll stick with this setup for another week before making adjustments, I have to consider it is because I am  not accustomed to the new riding position. Oh and I did screw up one other thing on the big parts order - I purchased a riser kit for my aero bars except the bars I bought came with all the different sizes already in the package. Soooo now I got a bunch of spacers that I'm not using. At least it was cheap lol!

Since TP Likes Cats so much.... :)

Doubling up on the workout, I hit the pool as well. When we got into the water I was beside two other triathlete regulars. Just before the workout began the two of them discussed what tonights workout consisted of for them. The one guy was like "8x200 4 x 400, 2 minute rests blah blah blah" as did the other guy. They turned to me and I responded with a simple "1 x 3500m". They looked perplexed. The one guy knows I don't stop so he kinda scoffed at that method but I assured him I'm almost doing the same as them, except I dont stop between 'sets'. I will sprint the 400 but I will follow it up with an easy 50-100 at a lower effort, instead of coming to a complete stop. There is no bottom to stand on in a race, so why sprint hard and come to a stop in practice? Part of the challenge for me is to use the active-recovery laps to conciously bring my heartrate down all while still producing a forward motion. Not your typical swimmer's training technique but just the same - Ironman is not typical swimming. Most 'real' swimmers train for short intense bursts, thus the intervals are used in training. Triathletes take on this swim training structure but is it necessarily appropriate for the lengthy sustained output for a long-distance swim? I don't think so. I live and die by "What you do in practice, is what you will do in a race". Dont stand, dont kick off the wall, no stopping. Anyhow, obviously all the top trainers and programs incorporate these drills and I'm sure it works for them and may even have some science to back up the reasons why its better to train that way. Maybe I'll even adopt that method. In the meantime though, I'll stick to what works for me. The fun part - when they sprinted there 400's I would deliberately catch and pass them, even after they had a rest. This lead to the most intense swim session Ive ever had! I do this all the time, but this time I took little to no rest since I was playing that game with the both of them. So It was pretty much non-stop 85% perceived exertion. Lots of fun! :)


Bike - 0:50hrs on New Aerobars
Swim - 1:00hr Speed session


  1. dude I like your swim theory.
    LOL "me 3500m x 1 " Love it !!!

  2. Simply put... you are an asshole in the pool. I do the sets, mainly because I don't have my breathing ready for the full length set yet but I too make sure that out of everyone swimming I swim their pace or faster.

    Why? Well crap, it's only going to make me faster right? If I don't use these people as rabbits for me, then I will never get faster.

    I get your logic on the whole race mentality and why stop.

    Typically its like running, you don't go out and just run 2hrs non stop every time. You switch it up to mess with your muscles a bit and build speed.

    To me, swimming is 100% technique anyways. You can do what you want as long as you have a comfortable stroke down pat.

    Nice swim man. I can't swim that far yet... don't want to either LOL.

  3. OH YEAH, where is the pic of your wife?! That's the only reason I came back to your blog. Don't use this to keep me coming back now!!!

  4. hahahahaha:

    except I dont stop between 'sets'

    nice swim!

    and great news on the aerobars

  5. "2 minute rests" WTF??

    nice job on 3500 meters

  6. J, at first when reading the post I thought you were crazy for doing a complete 3500. Then when you explained the 400 hard, easy to recover, I think that's genius. But then again, I'm a shitty swimmer so don't put to much weight in my support. BUT, I do like the thought process.


  7. I don't think I could ever do a non-stop 3500m in the pool... because I am the worst lap-counter ever and once I get above 200m I zone out and can't remember where I am. That's why at masters swim I never want to be the lane leader because I don't want the responsibility of counting ;)

    Thanks for checking out my IM Louisville report! It was a really really awesome experience and I LOVED it. I wore a TON of sunscreen - SCAPE SPF 50, and for the most part I was only a little red on my shoulders/face - that stuff is amazing. BUT, check out #5 on this post: I wore a 2-piece tri suit and the top flipped up somehow on my back during the bike and OWWWWW! You can still see the triangle, though it's much paler. So, this is what I would've looked like all over if it hadn't been for the SCAPE!

    You and Mrs LoTC should TOTALLY sign up for IM Louisville 2012! It is such a great experience. This year for me is all Oly's and HIM's (3 of each so far; probably adding at least one more Oly) to build speed/strength in the shorter distances and get more racing experience... IM Louisville 2012 is tentatively on my long-term calendar, but we'll see how things pan out!



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