Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A Better State of Mind

If you read my last post, you may be wondering if I am writing to you from a mental institution. Not  yet. Actually I am in a much better state of mind now than I was just a two days ago. Amazing what a little sunshine can do.

For the first time in thirteen days, the weatherman was right. By the way, I am not a weatherman basher. For the most part I think they do a wonderful job and are amazingly accurate. However, we just went twelve straight days where our local weatherman, the National Weather Service, and the Weather Channel have missed our daily high not by a little but by a lot. A whole lot. Every day. It hurt my feelings. It made my fish ponds cold. I don't like my fish ponds cold.

Not only did the temperature rise nicely and the sun shine, but I arrived at Delta State to find the pool set up for long course. Dude! I like long course. Actually, I love long course. Long course is much better for endurance training. The difference between the two in distance is only a little under 10%. The difference in stroke count, however, is a full 30%. What? That's right. Swim it yourself, count your strokes, and do the math. For me, at least, there is a solid 30% difference between the two, and that is why long course seems so much harder than short course: it is.

I decided to do my own thing at the pool, and I started with 1,000 meter warm up, and then decided on 2,000 for time which I did in 35:58, a new PR. I stopped on the wall and Mark Blackwood was there so I asked what they, the Masters, were doing. Since they had two 400s and an 800 coming up, I opted for the rest of the Masters practice. We did the 400s with paddles pushing the first 25 of each 50. When we did the 800, they got to use fins. My fins were stolen about a year ago, so Ricky Smith and Mark handed me my butt. I tried to keep Mark from lapping me, and I help him off for seven hundred meters before he overtook and passed me. We pushed the second 25 of each 50, and then warmed down with an easy 200 to end the Masters practice. On my own, I swam a straight 1,300 with small paddles and then 300 with finger paddles. I was pretty much done, but that is exactly what I needed. I finished with 6,400 LCMs. This was a good training swim for the Challenge, a good start. I need more of these and they need to grow longer, much longer. But I feel like finally I am on my way.

The DSU pool is set up for long course, the weather is warming, and my grandchildren get better looking every day. Life is good.