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  #1  
Old 03-19-2013
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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Mike from NS
Default Stuck on a plateau and trying to jump off...

I thought I read something here that may apply to my situation but can't find it now. So - my question : What means or methods are encouraged and thought to help increase stamina to enable swimming farther than 25M at a time without needing a rest? I see so many swimmers zip back and forth with not spending "rest" time at the wall. Usually I feel myself fortunate to have reached the wall and enjoy a rest. I don't feel terribly winded upon reaching the wall ( and on occasion have swam the 25M without taking a breath ) but I do feel the need to rest and re-group. What I have been doing to try to "slay this dragon" is try to take shorter rests and head back. At other times, I may start for the end from about mid-way down the lane and turn at the wall and see how far back I can make it. Neither attempts have worked out terribly well and I fall apart way too soon. Any comments or suggestions will be appreciated.
Mike
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Old 03-19-2013
dgk2009 dgk2009 is offline
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work on making that 25 as effortless as possible,balance,streamline,try to lower your stroke count,then when you are ready go for fifty,I'm in the same boat you are but can do 75 on a good day sometimes a 100,it's the journey not the destination.
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  #3  
Old 03-19-2013
AWP AWP is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgk2009 View Post
work on making that 25 as effortless as possible,balance,streamline,try to lower your stroke count,then when you are ready go for fifty,I'm in the same boat you are but can do 75 on a good day sometimes a 100,it's the journey not the destination.


Mike,
Of course good advice here by dgk, but perhaps this is a breathing issue?
Regardless, maybe you can experiment with this exercise; SG from one end to the other (if able in 'your' pool), and see how many it takes to do so. First work on making each try easy, then on doing one less. Never hold your breath while doing so, only stop when your legs drop too low or you need air. Jump from one glide to the next without much pause, then no pause.then progress to SG and one stroke...then two, etc. After stopping between tries, let yourself finish the length some other way, say back or breast stroke. Then maybe try one full length, pause, then go for two, remembering how you felt on your progression. Visualization is very strong here.
Concede yourself to the water, work with it, it's an experiment, no expectations (try not to try ; ) ).

As far as breathing is concerned,let us know what you practice in this regard and let's see if we can assess something from it.
Keep on keeping on my Canadian friend (my wife is Canadian), I know you've been a stalwart TI guy.
Cheers
Alan
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Old 03-19-2013
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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Mike from NS
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Thanks for your quick replies dgk2009 and Alan.
Sometimes it is important to re-realize the journey should be the focus rather than the destination. Just as it is important to keep the effortless factor in mind. Good points and methods you mention dgk2009. Thanks.

The facility at which I swim Alan has a competition pool and a training pool with a uniform depth of about 3.5 feet. The last time I tried SG to cross this 25M pool it took 4 "best" pushes with one more to cover the last 15ft or so. Getting 2nd, 3rd & 4th push from the bottom needs practice for a good purchase for the push. I'll follow the suggestions you put forth the next time in the pool and make this the first part of my future swim structure.

I frequently practice Nod & Swim drill generally with fins and more recently without. These days I'm comfortable with bi-lateral breathing. I spend most of my pool time in the competition pool (also 25M) which goes to 6 ft deep after about 15 to 20ft from the wall and then onto 12 feet at the deep end. I think there is little doubt the solution to my situation is getting the breathing sorted out and seamless. And better balance will most likely help that. The Nod & Swim drill has worked well to this point. When I try for "speed" the lap clock indicates I cover 25M in about 25 +/- seconds. It usually takes me about 20 strokes for the 25M at other times. In my "speed" trials I was more focused on the destination than the stroke count! As a possible indication of comfort in the water, I often push myself off the blocks' handle to the bottom of the deep end and either sit on the bottom for a few seconds or try blowing dolphin rings, or retrieve something on the bottom.

And Alan - we have something on common ... my wife is a Canadian girl too! ;-) Guess we make wise choices !

I appreciate you input. Thanks.

Mike
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  #5  
Old 03-19-2013
dprevish dprevish is offline
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dprevish
Default In a similar situation

Mike,

I can relate:
I've found that the more that I've made a concerted effort to stop swimming the old way and discipline myself to swim the TI way, that oddly I don't have the lap after lap stamina that I used to have in the past. I've done open water at over a mile in the past as part of triathlons; but now am hart pressed to have the air to make 100 yds (three flip turns).
I am re-studying the TI step of Continuous Breathing as an approach. It seems to be helping. Just practicing the quick bite of air and staying balanced is a skill that seems to become even more important once you are swimming through the water, as with TI.
I watch the folks plodding their way back and forth lap after lap, over-rotating for air and gaining no momentum and remember that that was a lot like myself. It used to take me about 26 strokes for 25 meters, now about 16 to 17 and can see a better way.
One thing that I believe is that to swim well is truly founded on balance, just as Terry instructs. I find every day that the balance to hit the "x,y" axis, not over-rotate and then go after the breathing may be the most challenging part of it all.
Still, I feel your frustration, as I could use so advice from anyone who's been at this stage and wondered if they are going in the right direction.
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  #6  
Old 03-19-2013
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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Mike from NS
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Thanks Dave,
I know no other way than the TI way. Never swam as a kid and only started learning to swim 6 years ago. About the last day or so of the outdoor pool swim season last summer I had my greatest breakthrough. That was that I think I discovered the "bite of air". It was working so well that it made me giddy with excitement. I haven't been able to recapture that day. But as I recall it included the most carefree breathing I had experienced. I'd get the bite and maybe some water as well and with face quickly back down as I kept going and spitting out the water. The exhale was the focus ..... and it all worked. But why not now? hmmmm? I'm going to put greater effort to nail this down in the next weeks. The ski season ends this Sunday and the summer pool starts July 1st. Three months should be enough time to get the "style" I almost had found last August 30th. My goal will be 100M non-stop! Well .... maybe 50 non-stop and 100 by summer's end. ;-)
Mike
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  #7  
Old 03-20-2013
efdoucette efdoucette is offline
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Just a thought here from another struggler.

I read that as a beginner (3 years and still consider myself that) you should "go for breath before you need to". Meaning that if you wait until you need a breath you will hurry, get tense, losing form and all goes downhill from there. I found when I do this I can calmly exhale the remaining air I have and calmly inhale fresh air and not gasp a breath. Hope that makes some sense.

I try to exhale slowly for multiple strokes and before I "need" a breath I go for a breath. Stay calm, relax, let your breathing dictate your stroke, don't let your stroke dictate your breathing. Again, coming from someone not qualified to be espousing advice.

Eric
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  #8  
Old 03-20-2013
Mike from NS Mike from NS is offline
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Mike from NS
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Thanks for this suggestion Eric. If it works for you - then maybe it will for me as well. Makes sense for sure and I'll try this too. If this promotes a relaxed state, it has to be good.

Have you made a visit to the Canada Games Centre yet? Last Friday it was crazy due to the school break --some regulars left not very happy. The schedule didn't reflect what was found there. Between 8 and 10 am, the pool was shared with the Ladies' aqua-size, synchro swimmers, life guard training and 2 lanes for lane swimmers. And to make "more" space the lanes were sideways! I stuck it out as a learning experience; but offered my polite complaints at the desk when leaving- as did many others. Talk about pool etiquette!

Mike
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  #9  
Old 03-20-2013
dprevish dprevish is offline
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dprevish
Default Breathing

Mike,
I'll keep you posted on any breakthroughs that I have. I have a new direction as I said and will also take note of the other post from Eric. I could be doing something now that I never did before, maybe is the rushing to breath.
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  #10  
Old 03-20-2013
andyinnorway andyinnorway is offline
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Mike and Dave,

I too think breathing is the most likely issue here.

It's very important that breathing is balanced, the same amount of air that goes out has to go in which isn't so straight forward as the air goes in a lot quicker than it goes out (as the lungs act as bellows)

You also want to avoid the extremes of totally full and totally empty, just use the bits in the middle.

At the leisurely pace you see others plodding up and down at the breathing is almost similar to watching TV, it just occurs.

Other than breathing then you could be swimming tense, which would be like running 100m with straight legs.

Finding a hotel pool of 15m or less is a great place to practice perpetual lengths.

(Mike I'm off to France for annual ski trip tomorrow)
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