Did another triathlon today (1500m swim) in a choppy lake with 10-15 mph winds, and I'm still laughing about it. The swim was so easy, so relaxing, I wished it had been twice as long. This coming from me is like a cat wishing to take another bath. Unreal! Thanks TI
Took a two day TI workshop Aug 6th and 7th from coaches Kevin Millerick and Sarah. Enjoyed it tremendously. After the 'shop drilled 2 or 3 times a day most days at my gym on focal points and balance.
Did a sprint-tri a couple weeks later, and the swim was horrible. Too many focal points rolling around in my head. Thrashed, was tired afterwards, the usual.
Back to the pool and the drills every day. And a funny thing happened. I started noticing how that patient lead hand helps with balance and balance helps with breathing. How keeping the laser pointed where I want to go, especially during a rotation to breath with that patient lead arm out, allows me to glide. Drill drill drill.. Kept my bag in my car and whenever I had time, hit the gym to drill (10% swimming).
Back to the tri today. The horn goes off, the adrenaline is up, and I go into superman glide. I started a tri in superman glide! Then rotate to skate on the left, breath, skate on the right, breath, then into the swim relaxed. Whenever I'd get kicked in the head by someone coming across my line, superman glide, skate, get back to swimming. During the swim, for 15 strokes at a time I'd concentrated on one focal point out of an inventory of three I decided to work on at the race ('relaxed neck' to 'rotate just enough', to 'patient lead hand').
All the chop in the lake, just rolled with it (literally). It just didn't matter. It made it more fun. I was in my drills like at the pool, and just doing my thing.
Came out of the swim... I can't even describe. Unphased. Calm. Relaxed. 10 mins faster than I had been before (34mins, still slow for 1500m, but 10 mins faster than I've ever done before). Jumped on the bike and the rest of the day was just another day of hammer time except this time, I could not believe I just swam beforehand. I wasn't out of breath! I felt better than when I got in the water!
I've got a lot of swim stuff to work on, but it's much better to work on these drills than just more endless yards of the same worthless junk.
Again -- thanks TI.
Great story. Thanks for sharing. I've never done real open water swimming, but it sounds like 1500M outdoors in 35 is really good! I think my take away is the cautionary tale of trying to do everything right. Just going in with a 1-2-or-3 focus points is enough. I think I'll work that into my routine. Do 400 concentrating on wide tracks, then the next 400 on laser head, then the next 400 focusing on my catch.
I agree--an inspiring story.
That point--about having too much in your head--is really worth underlining. I just read a great article in this week's New Yorker about a surgeon who recruited a retired surgeon, and former teacher of his, to "coach" him by watching him in the operating room. It's a
great cautionary tale about how we can't see everything we do (or hear), and how details matter. Perhaps not news to this group, but well-told, in any case.
Training for 3kms
I've been training hard for a 3km ocean swim. Just continuous swimming. I had been trying to teach myself TI, however found myself slipping back into my old routine. Slow swimming and loosing my motivation. Two weeks ago I managed to locate a TI Coach. Since then I have had two lessons and continue to practice my drills.
Prior to the TI training I was averaging 3 x swims a week.
1 x long pool session - 2km - 2.5km and 2 x ocean swims 1.4km - 1.8km.
I am seeing huge benefits from the change to TI, however I am a little concerned at loosing my swim fitness.
My question is this -Given that I only have 4 weeks until the swim- Do I keep up my drills and forgo any distance work or is it best to incorporate one distance session and two drill sessions?
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