Racing and sunshine
At the Canadian National Master Swimming championships last weekend a friend Steve Wallace told me of a study that was done with weight lifters. Before lifting in a competition they went outside and exposed themselves to sunshine for at least five minutes. The results showed that they lifted significantly more weight. The rest aspect was controlled. Can't verify as to all the controls Suzanne.
So before the my 50m Fly race I went outside for over five minutes and came back in and swam the race 3 seconds faster than I did six weeks ago. Now I fully acknowledge that the placebo effect could be in full force. Also I had six more weeks of practice to continue my comeback from prostate surgery. Although I was aware of the mental aspect I wholeheartedly went in with the believe that the sunshine would have a positive effect.
As it turned out I edged my long time competitor by less than a second to win the gold.
The next two days were very cloudy so I never could test it again. Of my five races four were faster than six weeks ago and one was two seconds slower (third race of the day and I was fatigued). The 50 fly race was by far percentage wise the biggest percentage increase of the increases.
Food for thought.
We're having some sunny weather here at the moment and this year I have managed three sea swims so far in a wetsuit, but it's still very cold.
The idea that sun exposure can improve your times is interesting but I don't think there are many opportunities to test it in this country since virtually all pool swimming is indoors.
Congratulations on your good time and gold medal and I'm glad your health is improving.
Keep up that swimming with ease stuff.
That was the point of the research. To be inside then go outside for 5 to 10 minutes into the sunshine and then return inside and perform. I was told it was done in sunshine. Don't know if they tried to measure the effect of cloudy day exposure.
We do sometimes get sunshine here. It isn't raining all the time - it just seems that way sometimes. There's also the possibility that while you were outside soaking up the sun you'd miss your heat. But that couldn't happen to a well-organized swimmer.
I must keep my eye open for opportunities to test the theory.
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