The Magic of Easy Days!
Very tired today and unmotivated. My heart rate was elevated about 12%, and arms/shoulders a bit tired (I swam 6000m in the past 2 days), so I was considering skipping my swim practice.
Jumped in anyway and resolved to just do easy swimming. Warmed up for 300m not counting strokes, just feeling and perceiving.
Then did 10 x 50 on 1:00. I intended to swim at a 1:50/100m pace, but halfway through the set discovered I had been doing a 1:40/100m pace (I guess math isn't my strong suit!)
Finished at 1:50/100m pace.
Then swam 5 x 100 at 1:55/100m pace with :10 rest.
I didn't try for a particular SPL--just really watched hand entry (no bubbles) and patient catch, and concentrated on feeling extreme ease.
I finished with a few 110m and 50m repeats, keeping the same focus on ease. And wow!
This was just what I needed. Without realizing it, I have been doing most of my training at much harder (for me) paces--almost all well over my hoped-for "race" pace for my 10 mile swim in July.
This nice easy day--2,000m of pure mindfulness and relaxation--was just what I needed. I also slowly became aware that my left hand enters a bit wider than my right, so worked on that asymmetry by bringing the right hand out wider. And really came back to the bubble-less hand entry focal point (very few bubbles at these slow speeds), which always helps me stay relaxed.
So, EASY days (aerobically/pace-wise) are magic. I had forgotten all about that. Got out of the pool feeling stronger and more relaxed than when I got in. Great practice.