Thursday, March 24, 2011

10 X 500 Meters 1 Minute Active Recovery

This is a prescribed standard workout on the digital monitor on the Concept2 ergometer. It is actually set up for unlimited numbers of repetitions, thus the setting is 500m:1min rest. I used to have that log card but it walked away several months ago, so I am relying on what memory I have left to get me to the log here.

5 minute warm up 900+m

10x500/1 min active rest
I really don't recall what the average is, probably around 2:10, and last is 1:55-

3-5 minute warm down

Pull ups 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 total=15

Swim down 1000+yards

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Swim Only

I was going to pull a fast one this morning, but I swam instead. I went to the Y with the thought in my mind to either do a circuit on the machines, lightly of course, or maybe do a fast superset with light dumbbells, but I could not pass up the pool. I did not even think of erging this morning, no whining, but my shoulders bother a bit today. I was a wreck yesterday afternoon with all the sanding Monday and Tuesday, along with digging and planting a row of beets and peas. I was pooped.
I did swim easy and smooth this morning, good dps, good body position, no flip turns and no short axis swimming. I enjoyed the swimming for about 40 minutes.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Workout Log

I think I have finally adjusted to the time change from last week. I am even getting out the door and into the gym earlier. I am a bit shy in my compression gear, oh well.

5 minute warm up~800m

pit stop,

10x500m/1min active recovery 6500+meters, 500 splits ranging from mid teens to final 1:56

3 minutes warm down erg

Swim for fun~20 minutes swim play with tri guy in yellow cap

I heart USAT.

Monday, March 21, 2011

FINA, USASwimming Investigatiing Fran Crippen Fatality

According to reports, both FINA, the international governing body of swimming, and USA Swimming have been hard at work doing their own investigations into the swimming fatality of Fran Crippen. What needs to be investigated? We all know exactly what, where and who(m), and this fact is what ultimately brought the Open Water Swimming Safety Conference to reality. I emailed USMS before the tragedy in Dubai(or UAE, WTF)money, politics, no interest of the athlete or his/her safety rant over,,,calling for action after the Whiskeytown Lake Open Water Swims. Calm down. Oh yeah, rant on, FINA is about ready to implode. There does need to be more change within the internal structure of the governing body of world swimming. The issues are so bad that there is an international grassroots movement among some of the premier swim coaches in the world to break away from FINA and form the World Swimming Association, WSA as the governing body of swimming for the future.

There was nothing said about that issue at the conference. I think it is an issue for the open water community and that is perhaps an underlying issue that contributed to the importance of the conference. The conference origins are grassroots too; we as athletes, responsible event organizers, and aquatic professionals are being proactive to make our sport safer for all to enjoy. FINA has a history of making poor choices, see tech suit era, and I hope USA Swimming takes a hard look at their relationship.

Open Water Swimming Safety, Continued

I really appreciated the guests from USAT, the governing body of triathlon in the United States. I think that masters swimming is going to be communicating with USAT about this issue. There are many indications that this is going to happen. USAT, along with the International Triathlon Union, ITU, has a great administrative infrastructure, and they have got the job done. The sport is so well organized that triathlon was recognized by the IOC as an Olympic sport by the 2000 Olympics, well before open water swimming was accepted in 2008.

The Conference was well organized and expertly moderated by Steve Munatones, and attended by some of the most prominent people in the swimming world. I was proud and glad to be attending this groundbreaking and necessary event. I made sure to introduce myself to many people, and I had the pleasure of meeting a long time cyberfriend for the first time. is the first blog I remember following. She is the new race director of the annual Naples Island Swim in Long Beach California.

I would like to briefly bullet point my observations as to what the sport of open water swimming is going to put in place providing for a safe and fun environment:
  • Safety Coordinator, independent from the race director and race referee, ultimately the representative from the EMS authority that has responsibility for life safety in the area. The head lifeguard, if the event is at guarded facility, would be an example of such an authority. He has that responsibility in his job description.
  • Safety Standards, Guidelines and Education. Quality control. See USAT
  • Safety Certification, of race officials, race directors, course marshalls, et al. See USAT
  • Standardize Safety Action Plan, Follow Incident Action Plan of Local Authorities or other
  • Course management guidelines/standards
  • Education of participants to key elements of safe swimming during training, while participating in events, and all other times
  • Risk Assessment
  • Annual Conference
  • United States Triathlon reached out to USMS, and will be meeting again soon! Jeah!
  • revenue issues
  • Standards/guidelines and other best practices must be taken into account. See USAT, USLA, YMCA, American Red Cross.
  • Event monitoring/lifeguarding, professional/volunteer, open water certified
  • Education and Certification and Emergency preparedness including a comprehensive risk assessment and incident action plan
  • We will be working closely with USAT. See Jeah above
Steve just sent out a similar version of the above in a formal email to all who attended the conference. I will attempt to post it here. That worked. Here is his version, I believe we are on the same page.

On Sunday, there were dozens of suggestions, opinions, recommendations, experiences, requests, ideas and proposals shared among those from the open water swimming/triathlon/medical/military communities. Below is a summary draft of the key ten points discussed during the last session. If you feel important points or proposals should be added, please feel free to email me and I will provide a final summary report by Wednesday, March 23rd for your reference.

1. Create and utilize an independent Safety Officer position that is separate from the Race Director with the responsibility to plan and execute the safety aspects of a race and the authority to postpone or cancel a race.

2. Establish educational and certification programs for key positions responsible for open water swimming events

3. Set and make uniform race safety standards and check lists

4. Create an online repository of information with shared documents and content

5. Collaborate across events, borders and organizations

6. Offer pre-race and regularly scheduled clinics to help elevate the awareness and increase the education of swimmers and coaches

7. Create a mindset and lifestyle of safety at all levels of open water swimming – training and racing, solo and mass participation, fitness and competitive

8. Establish, formalize and annually review risk assessment before races are approved or sanctioned.

9. Interact, incorporate and defer to the knowledge and experience of professional safety personnel (lifeguards, Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary, etc) in the pre-race planning and execution of safety before and during the race.

10. Establish standards and recommendations for athlete education for training and racing so athletes learn what is required themselves

Here we go! Thanks again, USA Triathlon.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Open Water

Fellow Swimmers and Triathletes
There was a groundbreaking meeting of the minds this weekend. The Open Water Safety Conference, sponsored by USMS and PMS, was huge. This was a grassroots meeting of some of the most important people in swimming, especially open water swimming. There was a huge amount of participation and brainstorming and I think that this conference has brought the first and most important piece of this safety issue is AWARENESS. We are all much more aware of the inherent safety issues that need to be addressed and qualified.

The 2 most important people outside the actual swimming community were B. Cris Brewster, Chief of USLA, and Liz Tucker, who is the administrator of the officials(race director) certification for USAT. Chief Ralph Goto and Luitenant Buchannan were also key guests with expert insight.

In short, I think that all sanctioned open water swims of less than 10km should be swum under USAT or ITA sanction.

With the tremendous unhappiness with the world governing body of swimming, I think it should be looked at. Open Water Swims under 10km should be sanctioned by triathlons governing bodies.

Swims over 10 km should be dealt with individually thus not placing unnecessary burden on Triathlon Inc. Thus they will still be sanctioned by their own governing bodies, such as English Channel Swimming Association, World Marathon Swimming, Catalina Channel Association, etc. Really, they are elite events, not really competitions except for a very few select people. They should be viewed as human events of special importance like mountain climbing.

It appears that triathlon has its act together. From its infancy in the late 1970's, it has grown hugely and is a recognized Olympic sport. This is because it has excellent organization, it obviously has tremendous support and swimming in open water is only a part of the event. The event organizers are certified, they undoubtedly have safety for the masses in the forefront of their action plans, and there are way more triathlons than open water swims. This means that there is accountability among race directors.

Open water swimming needs to look carefully at this idea. FINA is under attack! Becoming sanctioned by Triathlon may make the insurance issue become less of a factor. I think they have their bases covered and we should just break away and go to another sanctioning body. I am sure they will welcome us. We will still be swimming, and perhaps their will be more open water swims. Triathlons soon may have a swim only portion.

We just need USAT and ITA to buy into this proposal.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Fusion Cuisine, ala St. Patricks Day

Where is that tweet, or was it in a food blog or other source, but I heard that the traditional corned beef and cabbage served in mass quantities throughout the U.S. on St. Patrick's Day, actually has roots in New York's Lower East Side. There were many immigrants of European Jewish and Irish heritage, among other immigrant people. The story is that the Jews and the Irish brought together the idea of using the last of the stored winter veggies, the ones that lasted the longest were potatoes, carrots and cabbages. The corns are actually a term for the course grains of salt that were used to cure and preserve the beef, usually a brisket. Pastrami is also similar cured beef that is highly seasoned and delicious. I am getting ready to eat.

NCAA D1 Women Swimming Championships this weekend. I am looking forward to going to the Open Water Safety Conference in San Francisco this weekend sponsored by United States Masters Swimming and Pacific Masters Swimming. There are many outstanding speakers, guests and participants.

Log of workout

Erg 35 minutes total.

Start slow
5 min 800+meter
15 minutes to reach 4km total
Good row for last 10 minutes, last 2 minutes well over 500 meters
5 minute row down
No issues

1000 swim very easy until I felt better. Left shoulder irritation, dissipated after swim.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Open Water Safety Conference

Here is the link for the Open Water Safety Conference sponsored by United States Masters Swimming and Pacific Masters Swimming.


What is with the soreness today? Let me examine the previous workouts from the last several days.
3/10Thursday Travel day, scheduled no swim day. I swam the previous 5 days, typical lame workouts, but at USC, and I was thinking of returning to competition at the Caltech Sprint Pentathlon on Sunday, but I timed lane 6 and swam later that afternoon.
3/11 1500 swim, 6km erg
3/12 30 min erg including 2km test 8:03, swim down 1500
3/13 2500 swim only
3/14 1000 swim, 30 min erg. It took at least 15 minutes before I started to feel comfortable, but I did finish at 6.1km

I guess I could have a case of DOMS, Delayed Onset Of Muscle Soreness, but it does not appear to be the case. I only erged twice, maybe 3 times while at USC. Their ergs are crap. It is the only thing that I can think of except I may be experiencing some sort of weirdness with the time change.

I am looking forward to the USMS conference on the issue of Open Water Safety. There are many experts scheduled to speak on various issues, including various dangers, different open water environments, hazard prevention and monitoring of competitors. Experts include competitors, race directors, open water safety specialists, including representatives from the San Diego Lifeguard Service and Los Angeles County Fire, Lifeguard Division. I think there is also representation from the triathlon world. Cris Brewster, the President Emeritus of United States Lifesaving Association, will also be addressing the conference. I think the conference will be dedicated to Fran Crippen, and it is also an honor to see that Maddy Crippen, Frans mother and founder of the Fran Crippen Foundation, will be a guest. The conference is addressing all the issues that I spoke of in my emails to USMS after the tragedies at Whiskeytown Lake in September.
Steve Muntones, the race director of many open water swims and the ultimate authority of open water swimming has mentioned in his blog that there were 15 deaths in the open water swims last season. Too many unnecessary and perhaps preventable deaths in our sport we love. I am happy the issue is being discussed in this forum.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Catching Up with SoCal

Started swimming in SoCal on March 1. I arrived in Socal before noon, and I went to Santa Clarita Swim Center, somewhere. It is a fairly newer facility with a 50 meter pool, and a splash pool, I think I saw one.
I joined the Lyon Recreation Center at the University of Southern California on Wednesday. In addition to the McDonald Swim Center, which includes the 50 meter pool and a diving well facility, there is the recreation center. The ergs are garbage. They are dirty, broken and in need of serious maintenance! I only used them 2 or 3 times. But I did swim Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday.
I should have at USC on Wednesday too, but I went to Santa Monica Swim Center. There was a JC class in the fitness pool(50 meter) so we all swam in the splash pool, I was fairly unaware of the schedule and the pool closed at 0800 but I swam good. I swam outdoors 8 times in the past 2 weeks, and now I am back at the SCFY in Santa Rosa. All this talk about swimming makes me think about heading there right now. Have a great day.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Workout Log

This morning I got on the nice erg at SCFY.

10 Minute warm up.

It was really a 2K. I took a drink and then did a Saturday test. I probably missed 1 or 2 while on another scouting trip to SoCal. The ergs I have used while there are not very good, USC Lyon Recreation Center has the absolute worst Concept2 ergs. Awful. They told me there were 4 in the building, but 2 of them were inoperable(closeted), and the remaining 2 on the floor were in poor condition. They are unmaintained and in pieces. They are dirty too. I should Yelp them and give the USC Rec Center a poor review. The pools are okay, but there is a bunch of construction going on around the pools at this time and the locker room is poorly laid out. No wonder it is so cheap to be a member.

I happen to love Trojan Swimming, I heard there were 24 Olympians in the pool this AM. Ryan swam there too! Jeah. I was on the lookout for all my favorites, for example @swimhardy, @rebsoni, and others. I think I saw Jessica in the water, ha. She tweeted later that day that she had done her longest continuous swim during her workout that day.

Warm up completed

2K 2:08, 2:02, 1:57, 1:55,

1K warm down

500 yards free
700 yards back
9x50 free, 2 breath control, 1 easy, 3 times