My 2009 Short Course Meters (Preliminary Listing) Top 10's
Monday's Swim Report / 8 Things I May Have Missed

Not That Again. Damn 10x100's.

Workout started like every other cold winter morning.  Get down to our bathing suits, hop in the shower and run to the pool before we freeze to death!  I was a bit sleepy at first and took a nice and easy warm up to get the kinks worked out from yesterday's afternoon workout.

Warmed Up

400 (200 free / 200 IM 50 drill / 50 swim)

3x150's 50 kick / 50 drill / 50 swim.  I quikly took a pee break so I missed a 50 (400/800)

400 Pull (200 DPS w/ paddles, 200 w/o paddles build by 50) (400/1200)

6x25's working underwater streamlined (150/1350)

Then word came down from above that our team and this workout would go against the Geneva Convention rules on unusual and cruel punishment and have us do the 10x100's all out sprint "bench mark" or "break through" set.  The idea of these benchmark test sets to evaluate ability, find specific training zones, and plot future training targets.  Which in Masters swimming and the amount of people we have on our team is complete bullshit.  As a Master swimmer I know that I need to rely on myself for goal setting and setting any training targets as opposed to age group or college swimming when a coach would sit down and work with each swimmer.  For us it's more like the coach writes them down on this spreadsheet never to be seen again or at least not to the next time we do the set.  I decided to look at each one of the three reasons for doing a test set or bench mark set such as this.

1.  Evaluate Ability - This may be used by a coach to move up one swimmer from let's say the slow lane to the fast lane.  I noticed for example that going 2nd in my lane 10 seconds behind the 1st person I was catching up to most of the first group except for one swimmer.  My thought was that maybe that swimmer should move up a lane group.  I only noticed cuz' I was using other swimmers who left ahead of me as benchmarks to how I was doing.  And also as motivation to keep at it.  Played the catch up game to keep the drudgery of swimming 10x100's.

2.  Find Specific Training Zones - I'll interepet that as setting intervals in future sets.  You'd think that a coach would see his/her swimmers on a regular enough basis to be able to set intervals without the pure nonsence of 10x100's. 

3.  Plot Future Training Targets - Going back on Evalute Ability the coaches always say that we should use this set to check in with ourselves to see how we are in our training.  I guess that means after swimming the set I should take my times and think about what I'd like to do in future versions of this set.  Or maybe what splits would I like to hold in my 1,000 and 1,500/1,650. 

Hating the set I got to admit I did feel like I held my own better then previous past attempts at this set.  I was a lot more consistent if not faster.  Then again the interval changed a bit and was a bit easier this go around.  In the past I've done this set both on the 3:00 and the 3:30.  Today we started at 3:00 but at the 3rd or 4th one moved to the 3:30.

The first 100 I came in at 1:04.  The second 100 I came in at 1:02.  Then after that I pretty much held a 1:03 for all of them.  And by pretty much as I touched the wall and turned my head a few times it was just flipping to the 1:03 as I'd see the 2 for a brief glimpse.  So a few 1:02-highs.  I felt stronger a bit longer and didn't have my usual 100 that I sorta blow off and recover but then again it was on 3:30 and not 3:00.  But even then since I do keep my workouts on this handy dandy blog I did go to a few times when I did the 3:30 inteval and still had that one 100 that I dog it.  So maybe if I was to evaluate my ability I'd say I am doing well, feeling strong and being consistently on pace.  Let's just hope that as my last time doing this set was March of 2009 that we all take a nice long breather and do the set again in March of 2011. (1000/2350)

Afterwards I warmed down a 100.  Should have done more but wanted to come home and get warm and eat! (100/2450)

MTD SCY 17,300


Its easier to go negative.  As I just tweeted think i tore down and broke down every part of my body in workout this morning and it felt great doing it!  With that said right now I know I am trying to tear down my muscles so that they can rebuild and be stronger.  I am lifting at the gym to also get to that point.  So for my period of strength training that I am in I am thankful for this type of set.  On the flipside I do think that this sort of set in Masters swimming is a throw away set.  Its not like college, high school or age group that the coach has plenty of time to follow up with each and every swimmer.  Ive always have stopped after the workout and chatted with the coach about how I did.  But after that I come home compare it to past times I did the set, then move on and forget about it.  I dont expect that coaches to change future workouts based on this set but I do feel that if I dont say anything to a coach about this set it just becomes ink of a piece of paper that gets filed away to the next time we swim the set. 

As someone who hated these sets Ive gone online to read about these sets and realize how can they be used in a training program.  Once again I think these are great tools for age group, high school and college swimming.  But when you have Masters swimmers with 3 workouts today with about 24 swimmers on average in each workout it becomes to much for any coach to help each swimmer or even most of the swimmers.  Besides the fact that they are filled away never to be looked at till next time.  I feel its a wasted tool at this point.  But I know others who love the set and you cant make everyone happy.  I just need to remember that next time we do sets of 300 or 400s and Im the happy camper. 

Finally to end this little bit of a comment I will admit that I could be wrong.  For all I know this mornings coach too the sheets home, entered them into a spreadsheet and emailed them to all the coaches for discussion.  Maybe they all email each other to talk about each swimmer and how they not only did in this set but just how they are doing in general.  I do know they all meet about 4 times in a year.  What they do in between is beyond my knowledge.  So maybe just maybe they do know and do talk and put this set to good use.  I doubt it but I could be wrong.

Joel, you do make me laugh! I'm glad, though, your analysis was positive.

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