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  #21  
Old 08-28-2017
novaswimmer novaswimmer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sixtiesguy View Post
Nova Swimmer,
You have written in the past that it took you *two* years to get past stopping at 25 yards. Two years is a pretty long time, and I'm just curious about what happened to you after that 2 year threshold, and your motivations and determination to stick it out...so that you're now swimming a mile...Thanks for sharing!
Steve
Well, I'm not entirely sure it was two years. I worked thru all the TI drills, but it was breathing that really threw a wrench in the works. I think it took roughly two years to become fairly comfortable with bilateral breathing.

I tend to ride lower in the water than many and I am naturally dense in the hips and legs, so overcoming sinking hips and getting proper balance took a while as well....especially when incorporating breathing.

Also, going to a very busy pool where the shallower lanes are not always available limited my practice. And a very busy lifestyle with kid in school, tutoring, wife who works full time. ... I never knew when I could get to the pool. Nothing I could actually schedule. So that played a part for the long learning curve as well.

Being really observant of how to quell anxiety and stress helped me. Being mindful of swimming with an empty stomach helped a lot. Doing laps breathing exclusively on my more difficult side helped a lot -- even though it was really uncomfortable (swallowed lots of water, got sinus inflammation, etc, etc). Also practicing proper way to turn head, looking to side of pool rather than at the ceiling, keeping one goggle eye nearly submerged, Popeye mouth, all that... but it took time.

By slowing down my pace, learning to use only the muscles that were benefiting my stroke, and becoming more proficient at breath regulation, .. then I was able to increase the number of non-stop laps.

I'm still really a slow swimmer, but I'm not really trying to compete. Just trying to enjoy the exercise and feel of moving through the water.

Last edited by novaswimmer : 08-29-2017 at 12:49 PM.
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  #22  
Old 08-28-2017
sixtiesguy
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Streak View Post
My main motivator is trying to do regular exercise. Exercise that will have the least chance of causing any injury....
I also struggle to swim and really focus on more than 1 thing at a time. Having the TT beeping in my head, while counting strokes and focusing on say elbow lead recovery is a sure recipe for brain overload! One thing at a time for me.

I hope that answers the "mix it up" question.

Keep at it.

Joel
Hey Joel,
Thanks for your detailed response, it's helpful....and right, hard to focus on entire TI technique at one time....oy, just wait until I start practicing breathing on both sides.... Anyway, you said you started to swim as an *older* guy and flailed around a bit at first, so was your start date *a while* ago, after perhaps you gave other forms of exercise.....just curious, if you recall, if you've been been swimming 3x a week since your start date, approx how long each session and how many months until you were doing 100s?......

Steve
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  #23  
Old 08-28-2017
Streak Streak is offline
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Steve besides swimming lessons as a kid I was never a swimmer.
I always felt I needed to do some exercise so over the years jogged and cycled a little. Nothing competitive and did not belong to any clubs.
At about 50 years old I then added once a week Pilates to try and help with lower back issues. I also did some spinning classes a few times per week until my lower back started getting too uncomfortable. The Gym had a pool so I started to swim, about 8 years ago.

It was literally one length at a time to start with, over the months I progressed to doing more lengths until I could do 4x25m without a rest. Things progressed from there but I was not following any style or training regimen. I Just kept at it and got fitter and fitter in the water even though my style was really poor. This is how my swimming used to look

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-9dz-B0z4yE
and
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGkQsc5kMMQ

I could now (a few years later) swim 400 yards on the trot with a breather in between.
I felt confident enough to swim in the ocean which I did with alpha fins. Figuring that was cheating I needed to reassess my stroke.

My kicking was really bad to the extent that I could swim faster with a pull buoy than when kicking. I started researching types of kicking. 2BK sounded like it would suit my style and it led me to find TI about 6 years ago.

In the early days I would swim for about 30 minutes a couple of times per week.
Now that it's my only exercise I aim for 3 times per week in the pool and more recently have been adding in the 2 ocean swims as well. Friday was 2000 yards and Sunday was about 1700 yards.

Shout if you have any more questions.

Joel
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  #24  
Old 08-29-2017
sixtiesguy
 
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Joel, thx again for sharing your timeline, coming to TI as an older guy.. I've heard, on YouTube, Terry lecture that the "most *important* muscles in swimming are the ones you *never* see--the deep abdominals, the spinal stabilizers, and the midline stabilizers..." and you have to be in the water to develop those muscles, because the horizontal position is inherently unstable.....I find that attending spinning classes (I am there 2-3x a week) or dumbbell training or other athletic activities I enjoy are almost separate and apart from TI.... What I may have to rethink is my tendency to do my 35 minute swimming sessions sometimes before or after other gym activities I enjoy, including spinning and shadowbox MMA aerobic class...there's something negative in my head about the hermetic environment of indoor pools and solitary nature of swimming laps and not loving sharing a pool lane that I need to work on!....

....I know you're now swimming in open water, for breaking up the routine, I swam some in the nearby Sound this summer, but I don't breathe on both sides so there's a limit to my open water swimming...and as for making swimming regimen more social, perhaps finding a swim buddy or joining up with local Masters groups, well, I just know what the Masters coach will do with me and my inability to swim 50s is scrap all these TI principles I've lived with for almost a year, and have me practice with kickboards and fins, and do many of the things Terry dismisses as *not* contributing to "shaping the vessel."

...*Anyway*, from what you shared, just seems like it was *approx 4 years* of swimming the TI way before you posted the video to Coach Stu in 2015...so in those approx 4 years, I take it you just kept at it without a formal regimen, swimming a few times a week for 30-60 minute sessions...and by swimming regularly, you just got better at internalizing and strengthening those "invisible" muscles Terry talks about... and along the way focusing on swimming exclusively, and defining yourself as a "long distance swimmer"....in other words, even with 3x a week dedication, it can take *many years* for us 'old guys' to work up to first swimming 50s, then 100s, then 200s, then a mile, despite ancillary aerobics and strength training fitness regimens....is that a fair takeaway?

Thx again for taking the time, Joel...

Steve
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  #25  
Old 08-29-2017
WFEGb WFEGb is offline
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Hello Steve,

not Joel, but let me throw in some thoughts FWIW. (Started swimming with 60 and run into TI with nearly 61, became a coach with 65...)

- Even Terry does some moderate weight-lifting and Yoga additional to his swim times. (Don't know if he's still in, because his fight against cancer might forbid it.) What I'd suggest is, don't put your FPs in "I've to strengthen this or that muscle". Put your FPs much more to TI's balance FPs as Torpedo or Skate or head-spine-legs-alignment or weightless head or... Take not more than two FPs. Hold this FP in one lap drill. Then try to hold the same FP with hole stroke and be aware how long you can hold it. Then stop reset and start again. Do not think about the other pool's side.

- If you really go into the TI-(Kaizen)way of FP work there won't be much room left for what you feel as negative in your head. The principle of FP-work is a never ending way to go...

- One with your fitness will not have an aerobical problem swimming more than 50yards. It's definitely a thing of more or the right relaxation. You'll find it with FPs in relaxed balance and streamline...

- You should not think in terms as: It will last four years... Maybe, but stay confident. If you'll work the TI-way the pieces of the puzzle will fall into their places earlier for somone or later for someone else.

- One of my Mantra-like tipps is: Read all of this old and long thread you'll find nearly everything in what might move your breathing thoughts...

- Sometimes it might be helpful to think about Charles' "Training days". He said every participant learned FS for 700m in one day, never failed. His "open secret" is: Swim slowly! And if this doesn't work: Swim even slowlyer! I think this might really help to relax enough, but I've not a glance, how it will work without or with bad balance, what becomes more important the slowlyer you swim.

Find fun in your strokes and enjoy your good work.

Best regards,
Werner
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  #26  
Old 08-29-2017
Streak Streak is offline
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Great input from Werner.
Steve it appears that you have a fair amount of inherent fitness and have swum before.
19 SPL and 25 seconds to do 25 yards sounds very reasonable to the extent that while their is always room for improvement you must have a lot of the basics right.

Break your hundreds down in to 4 distinct 25's. With a full 60 seconds rest in-between each 25. Treat each 25 as the first one of the day not the second, third etc. of a 100.
As you start finding those really easy then start reducing the rest time from 60 to say 45s and so on.

I don't believe it has anything to do with strengthening your invisible muscles. We are talking a few 25's here not swimming a continuous mile. I think there is just a mental block here. Rather than consuming your mental energy with learning new stuff like bilateral breathing and other FPs just focus on some continuous lengths. Once you get that right then start the fine tuning.

I am a similar height to you and as you have seen from my videos also only breathe to one side every second stroke.

Cheers

Joel
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  #27  
Old 08-31-2017
sixtiesguy
 
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Thank you all for reading and for your helpful thoughts and responsive comments!

Steve
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  #28  
Old 09-01-2017
Danny Danny is offline
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Steve, good luck with your efforts to swim 50 or more yards continuously. As I read this discussion, I too am quite sure that, based on your fitness level, you have more than enough conditioning to do this easily. But I am also struck by a parallel with what you are experiencing and something that a number of us older more experienced swimmers are also experiencing. Those of us in this group would like to be able to swim longer distances at a pace of under 2 min/100 m. The younger folks (and the older, better swimmers) all assure us that this is easy to do and that it requires almost no level of conditioning at all. Perhaps they are right, but for some of us, this goal has been eluding us for years now. We keep hoping to find the better technique or level of relaxation in order to do it, but it is still work in progress. So, in that spirit, I can feel your frustration. Even so, I love my swimming times, and I hope that you can learn to do the same...
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  #29  
Old 09-01-2017
efdoucette efdoucette is offline
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Well said Danny. I feel and am experiencing the exact same thing. As a self taught swimmer my technique is evolving but it is what it is, and I continue to look to reduce tension. My limit is about 150 - 200M continuous, my goal is 1000M, time doesn't matter. But the draw is the enjoyment.
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  #30  
Old 09-01-2017
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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A few years ago I asked a question here in search of mind-sets or methods to attain the ability of swimming continuous lengths. The thread almost took on a life of its own with many helpful replies. Charles suggested just going as slowly as possible so not to become tired out and to have time to study what you were doing. Other suggestions were to hold out a reward if a certain length were attained. And on the other side of the coin ... don't beat yourself up if you fail to attain a goal. And then there was the suggestion of "just do it" -- push through and keep it going. It was an interesting thread with some good pointers.

So what helped me the most was going slowly and pushing through. I seldom keep track of how many lengths I swim but generally swim for at least an hour (summer out door pool) or 2 hours at a time over the winter months (indoor pool). After much practice I am finally able to swim a 50M at will. This summer I tried to end most hour swims with 4 continuous lengths and a couple with 6. Slow and ease but not pretty.

Yesterday, the outdoor Lions pool closed for the season and I feel it was my best swimming ever. Things clicked. The breathing was relaxed with very little if any head lifting. Why does this happen on the last day. I feel now that I would gain a lot from a TI workshop if I were able to get to one. Some day, maybe. (The water was warm this summer Eric, and the crowds were small. Last Sunday morning I had the entire pool to myself. Maybe see you next summer?)
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