Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Meet Report: Charlotte Sunbelt Champs.

Last time, Tim accused me of burying the lead/lede, so this time I will highlight it:

I swam well on Saturday, less so on Sunday: all in all better than I had feared but not as well as I would have liked.

As you may recall, I went into this meet uncertain about whether my shoulder--and my "good sense" about preventing further injury--would let me compete. I had swum a regular practice on Monday night, then took off the rest of the week because things hurt too much. I decided that it was better to go into a meet without a feel for the water than to irritate a potential injury.

By Saturday morning (after a week of icing and heating and ibuprofen--oh my), things were feeling relatively pain-free. The amazing part was that the swimming felt good: I felt rested, but I did not seem to have lost my feel for the water. Perhaps things even felt better than usual.

Granted, the downtown Charlotte pool is an excellent one. This is where I got my very first national cut (during a meet when I was fighting a yucky cold, even). It is a fast pool, and a pool whose very design makes it a pleasure to swim in. Once I got used to where the bulkhead was, that is, because it took longer than usual to be able to judge flip turns at that end.

On Saturday I had originally planned to swim the 1000 FR, but I scratched that in advance, figuring that long freestyle might be the worst thing right now. So on the docket were all easy events--50 BR, 100 BA, 50 FR, 100 IM, and then (after the 50 BR) a 50 FL in a women's 200 medley relay.

I shocked myself and my fans by swimming a best time in the 50 BR, cutting about 1/10 second since last March. This surprised me because I have not been targeting breaststroke these days, whereas last season was all about that stroke. Then I had a good race in the relay, making some serious ground back on the opposition (who were not, it turns out, true opposition, because they were swimming in a different age group: we won our age group uncontested--woohoo!), and swimming what felt like the best butterfly I have swum in sometime. Well, after the start, that is: for some reason my brain shut down when I left the block, and I started to do a breaststroke pullout--but was not disqualified because I never had non-simultaneous arm or leg movement--whew!

Then I swam the 100 BA, one of my goals for this year. It felt pretty good, and I did manage to descend the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th 50s, which pleased my coach. I was thrilled to see that my time was a drop of 8 seconds from my entry time, my previous best. I was ecstatic. What a drop for a 100! It turns out, though, that I had accidentally entered with my best 100 METERS backstroke time, instead of my YARDS time, and I actually added time. Oh well--another goal not yet achieved.

AFter that was the 50 FR, where I also dropped time from my best--19/100. Yip. And then the 100 IM, also a best time, by 61/100. Yip yip.

So how to account for all these best times in events where they were not expected? Two thoughts: 1. The swimming just felt fantastic, and I was incredibly rested. 2. I was not focused on these events, and focus can sometimes do me more harm than good.

So after icing, off to a great Irish pub for dinner and Guinness (Guinness times deserve Guinness!), and then to bed by 8 pm. Life is good.

I woke up on Sunday SORE.

I started off the morning with a 50 FL, and although I swam the race faster than I had the day before (in the relay) by about 4/10, I had a bad turn, so I did not achieve a best time. Then I swam a 50 free in the mixed 200 free relay, and my time there was about 2 seconds slower than the day before. And I was hurting. So that was the end of my day and my meet: I scratched the 100 BR, the 200 BA, and the 500 FR, took a shower, did some icing, and counted for teammates racing the 500 FR.

All to say what I said at the beginning: much better than I feared but not all I would have hoped for. So I continue with the icing and the recovery, and dream about the next meet.

50 BR :36.77*
50 FL (relay) :33.55
100 BA 1:24.78
50 FR :30.38*
100 IM 1:16.19*

50 FL :33.14
50 FR (relay) :32.29

Thursday, January 25, 2007


Great. Now that I have given voice to my anticipation of the meet this weekend, my shoulder says, "Oh, no you don't." It said this by standing up, yelling a little bit, and getting all enflamed at the point where three tendons come together. In case you're wondering, this also hurts, all the yelling and the standing up. It does not look like tendonitis--yet. I would like to keep it that way, thanks, having had a bout of tendonitis in my ankle that effectively ended my triathlon "career" (such as it was).

My massage therapist tells me that if I want to not stop swimming, I need to spend the rest of the time pretending I do not have a left arm. This is hard, it turns out. It precludes, just to name a few things: 1. talking on the phone while doing anything else; 2. typing without holding my keyboard in my lap; 3. putting on and taking off shirts. Are you getting the picture?

We are still going to the meet this weekend. I have already officially scratched the 1000 free (so much for achieving that goal this season), and the plan is to warm up for the p.m. session on Saturday and see how things feel. But I think that PP has a great meet ahead of him: he is poised to drop some serious time in his butterfly events, given big skill practice lately with that stroke. This time, after many meets where he has been my "handler," I may be the one holding his towel and glasses while he swims.

Sing it with me, "God is old, we're not old...."

Friday, January 19, 2007

Friday Random 9: Radio Isis.

I was reading Ian Williams's blog the other day, and he talked (in service of a different point) about technology that lets you broadcast your iPod to cars around you on the highway, sometimes reaching them whether they want you to or not. I am interested in the possibilities of this technology for pirate radio, although perhaps with a very small range. I have always wanted to run such a station (I know, Pump Up the Volume at an impressionable age), but now this may be the way to do it on the cheap.

Or would it be more like k. d. lang on your trucker's CB?

Anyway, I am even more inspired after yesterday morning's random mix on my mp3 player, which freakin' rocked. If only all the poor souls traveling with me on highway 123 could have joined in the fun!

Here's the best I can reconstruct of what it looked like:
"She's Leaving Me Because She Really Wants To," Lyle Lovett (Joshua Judges Ruth)
"O Paalanhaare," Lata Mangeshkar, Udit Narayan, Chorus (Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India)
"Dancing Machine," Jackson 5
"Dodge the Dodo," Esbjörn Svensson Trio (Somewhere Else Before)
"O Caminho," Bebel Gilberto (Bebel Gilberto)
"Bella Simamaer" Björk Guđmundsdóttir (Gling-Gló)
"Junkie Song," The Be-Good Tanyas (Chinatown)
"Karsilama," Talip Ozkan (The Dark Fire)
"Ava (Space Dance Mix)," David Byrne (Forestry)

And as can sometimes happen in surprising ways, the segues were even nice.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Another perspective.

I thought I would pass along this quotation from our swim team's newsletter, written by one of our coaches. It reminds me, as I so often need, of why we really do this:
Too often we get caught up comparing times when we really should be measuring effort, heart, tenacity, passion, resiliency, honesty, compassion, growth, leadership, courage, teamwork and all the other really important qualities we value.

Happy training, Everyone.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Divide and conquer.

Before I really get going on this swimming post and everyone nods off, let me suggest you travel over to Two-Thirds the Venture, where we are all signing up for push-ups and sit-ups of solidarity. How many will you commit to?

But now the news:

Last night we did more of a group practice than usual, since Coach usually caters the practice separately to each lane. While that approach gives each person the practice they need and deserve, it does cut down a bit on the sense of teamwork or camaraderie.

But last night was different. We did an open 25-minute warm-up (I swam 1200 yards) and then an open 7-minute (I think) kick set with fins (I did 750 yards). Then a bit of open swimming until 50 minutes into the 1:30 practice. Coach said that the main set would be a "sixteen eight four two," and I was trying to figure out how we could swim a total of 3000 yards in forty minutes. Turns out those numbers refer to MINUTES.

The goal of the set was to swim steady for 16 minutes, counting your laps. Then you rest about a minute and swim for eight minutes. During that 8 minutes, you are supposed to swim more than half of what you swam during the 16. Then you swim for 4 minutes, trying to go more than half of what you did in the 8 minutes, and so forth, with the last swim being 2 minutes long. Coach calls these kinds of sets "divide and conquer."

It was up to us how we did the swim. The PP swam freestyle (that's a lot of free!), and I did continuous 100 IMs, which was lots of fun because you never have to swim more than 25 yards of any stroke at any given time.

Here is how it went:

almost 800 yards @ 16:00
almost 450 yards @ 8:00
almost 250 yards @ 4:00
a little more than 125 yards @ 2:00

I was pretty happy with all that, because in all cases it was no problem to go more than half, and I felt better and better as the set went on. And most importantly, NO PAIN in my shoulder.

Also, because the fly comes first, I clocked 450 yards of fly in that set--three times my required minimum for a given practice! I can tell that swimming more fly is making swimming fly easier. I am still having trouble with the recovery, in that I bring my arms around too far (my wrists often hit, when they should only come around to shoulder-width apart), but the rhythm of the stroke is feeling more natural, as is keeping my hips up.

Then one of the other women, who was also doing 100 IMs, noted how cool it was that for the "1" we would only have to swim 1 length of fly. (That was the downside of the fly being first--when you went further than a multiple of 100, it was fly that always came first.) I said, "But we don't have to do a 1!" and then made the mistake of asking Coach across the pool whether we did, and he said we did not, but we could..... She, of course, was game, so I was game, too. So let's add to the above:
exactly 75 yards @ 1:00
That makes 475 yards of fly all together, out of a total of 4200 yards of practice. Whew!

Monday, January 15, 2007

She likes wearing lipstick.

When last we saw our Goddess, before she did that disappearing trick that she tends to pull when there are big time-consuming changes in the world such as a move of household, a laptop-free trip, or, oh, the beginning of a new semester, she was contemplating men. Not literally contemplating particular men, mind you, but men as a genre, a concept, a phenomenon. More specifically, she was focused on how the world of music might lead us to understand what exactly a man is.

Here is the one thing she can tell you from her explorations: the world of music has not made up its mind.

Who gets to define macho, by the way? Is it the Village People? Or the Rolling Stones? Or the Pogues? And is it better to be Handy or Sweet-Loving? Do we trust Tom Waits or John Brim more when it comes to Ice Cream Men? Are the categories designated by Soul Man, Zydeco Man, Kitchen Man, Television Man, and Magic Man useful for delineating the male gender, or do they function more like that Chinese encyclopedia that Borges mentions and Foucault loves?

And, we are sad to report, the Goddess's collection of pop contemplations of masculinity was not as comprehensive as it could have been, what with omissions of "Stand By Your Man," "Man Out of Time," and other versions of "I'm Your Man"--only to name those left in comments here and on The Art of the Mix. Further exploration of her own archive has led to wonder why she had also left out "Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)" or Antibalas' "Big Man," not to mention "Cuchy Frito Man" or "What's a Man to Do" or "Love Me Like a Man."

But now is not the time for a wide survey--no no no that boat has come and gone.

Today we need to talk about ZZ Top.

Because that, friends, is an interesting place to think about men. I do not really mean here that very many men who I have encountered are much like ZZ Top, because there is simply not that much facial hair in our world. But as I was listening to the I'm Your Man mix, I came to "Sharp Dressed Man," and it stirred up something old, as though there were something primal about that kind of guitar and that kind of simple drum line and deep voices--something that says: MAN.

Not "man," like the kind of person you would like to have an interesting conversation with, or you would like to glance at while you read the paper and drink coffee on a Sunday morning, or you could spend the better part of an evening talking about why Seabiscuit is a movie you are afraid to go see.

No, instead, I realize that this is a vision of "man" that planted itself in the now solidified inner reaches of my teenage sense of gender identity--the same place where adolescent anxieties and social pressures give you a sense of what to wear and what not to, how to walk if you ever want to have a date, what hair is for and why make-up is important. And so there I was, driving down the road, listening to my mix, a reasonably mature adult person suddenly transformed into a wiggly teenager wondering about what a person of another sex is like.

And really: does every girl go crazy for a sharp-dressed man? and are cheap sunglasses the first thing you go get when you get up in the morning and the light is hurt your head? and does she like whips and chains, whether or not she is all he can manage? and that girl who lives on the hill, is it true her sister will?

It does not matter, because these are songs about innuendo, which felt sly when we all first heard them. Who could believe they were singing about tush, and pearl necklaces, and tube snake boogie on the radio? But they were! And they do. And they get major gigs doing it!

And the odd thing for this goddess, who tends to think of herself as different from that teenager who was mesmerized by these visions of adulthood, is how intensely compelling this music still is--how it can still hit that primal point and ignite something intense. And face it, people: you want to drive around with your speakers amped and your windows down when you listen to "La Grange," and you want to pretend that you can sing like that and play the guitar like that while you're waving your long long beard around. You want to be able to play a retro-looking guitar while wearing hat and gloves. You want to be that kind of man, to know how to live in the world of that kind of man. Even if it is just for a minute or two.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

I'm your man.

Back before I lost all my playlist data, I had made a new mix, which entertained me while I decorated our Christmas tree, and which fortunately I saved on my mp3 player, so it survived the great erasure. It started out as a CD, but it quickly got too big, and it almost seemed there was nothing I could cut--not if I wanted it to have the expansiveness that I did want it to have.

So here it is. Please note that it extends beyond the 30 tracks allowed in a playlist by Art of the Mix.

It started with "I'm Your Man," by Leonard Cohen, which I've been listening to again after finishing season 1 of The L-Word, in whose last episode the song features prominently. Then I started wondering about men. And the mix is how music answered my questions.


Pretty much over at the other end of North America, there has been some sprinting lately. Reviews are mixed. I can tell you that during a speed set recently I realized how little quickness I have these days, so last night I asked Coach for a set of 25s. "Why?" he growled at me, as if suggesting that I just wanted an easy set, but when I told him I wanted an interval in order to do some speed work, he complied.

The first part (read: 3400 yards) of the practice was like normal:
1000 warm-up (400 swim, 300 kick, 200 pull, 100 drill)
600 kick (4 x broken 150: 75 easy, 50 build, 25 fast; 2 rounds with fins)
200 easy (to loosen the arms after the kick set)
1500 swim/pull (6 x 250: odds = pull free, evens = swim stroke)
100 easy
Then the sprint set was more of a descend set: 3 rounds of 4 x 25 descend, with 50 easy in between each round. I did the first round free @ :40, the second round backstroke @ :45, and the last round breaststroke @ :45.

It was a pretty good set for getting your pace set before you blast off, since the first 25 was at about 90% effort, which still allows for thought. In each round, I descended the swims by about 1 second per 25. That meant that in the breaststroke set, I swam :22/:21/:20/:19. There was quite a long glide in each of the first two 25s, but I worked to get big, powerful pulls and kicks in there. And the last 25 felt FAST, which felt good.

Now let me provide a bit of context. Last April, when I was training for Nationals, I did a somewhat similar set, but it was all breaststroke, and rather than descending the 25s, the idea was to maintain speed through the set. It looked like this:

5 rounds:
1 broken 100 breast (25s @ :45)
3 x 100 free @ 1:40

In that set, my goal was to maintain at :19 for each 25 of breast. I sometimes hit an :18, and I tried to hit a :17 but did not. But as the set went along, as I approached the fourth and fifth rounds, I was good and tired (I swam 1500 yards before this set and 2100 yards after for a total of 5100 yards), but I still had to work to maintain the quality.

Revisiting that set puts the 100 BR that I will swim at the end of this month in perspective. I would love to swim a 1:16 again, as I did in Coral Springs, but to do that, I would need to do much more fast training in the coming weeks.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Anticipation: Charlotte Sunbelt Championship.

My first meet of 2007 will be the 33rd Annual Short Course Yards Sunbelt Championship, held 27-28 January in Charlotte, NC. Now if only I can keep healthy between now and then. The last two years I have been sick with some kind of cold or flu for that weekend. In 2005, I went and raced anyway, and it was at that meet that I got my first national cut. Last year I was sicker, and decided to skip it. So now I am pumping vitamin C and hoping that an El Nino year combined with smaller class size might make for less sickness around here.

On that Saturday, I am entered to swim the 1000 FR (one of my year's goals), 50 BR (for grins and maybe a ribbon), 100 BA (to try to beat my previous best time--another goal), 50 FR (more grins), and 100 IM (how can you not grin?). If you look at the entry form, you might be surprised to see that I am NOT entered to swim the 200 BR, usually one of my big events.

Well, I don't want to swim it. So there.

Seriously, I am not training for it this year, and that means that racing it is both exhausting and potentially disappointing, which leads to stress--and who needs that?

On to Sunday! 50 FL, 100 BR (because OK, I am not exactly training for that either, but it just does not hurt as much as the 200, and so I enjoy swimming it), 200 BA (another event I want to check off my goal list), and 500 FR (because it is at the end of the day, so I can really lay it all out there).

It should be a very different kind of meet from recent years, and not just because I am swimming more backstroke than anything else except distance free, and I am not much at either. That means that the expectations for exceptional results are not there, yet I can go out and maybe have some best times (because they are events I rarely or never swim), and generally have fun.

Let's see if it works.

And yes, in case you're wondering, classes do start this week. Why else would I be devoting so much attention to swimming?

Saturday, January 06, 2007


The only undefeated team in Division 1 hoops.

'Nuff said.

The machine is breaking down.

Yow. Four swims, for a total of 16,200 yards, plus one hour of Pilates is all I need for this week, thank you very much. That is my second highest weekly yardage total for this season, though last year I swam over 20K yards several different weeks--how did I do that?

Yesterday was the first ever Pilates workout--fun, and with some good exercises, I think, although I may never learn how to breathe correctly. Last night the PP and I had dinner with some friends, and when I said I had tried Pilates, one of my friends said, "Pilates--what are they?" They are tiring in surprising places, is what I should have said, but was not yet stiff enough to know.

Now I am.

Swimming helped temporarily loosen some of the shoulder stiffness, but Oh. Man. Was I fatigued today or what.

Hint: The answer is not "what."

It was one of those practices where I started out tired and got tireder. By my coach's definition, it may be a sign of too big a week. But then, that is how you have big weeks, I guess.

Now? Carpe napum.

Friday, January 05, 2007

This year.

I am marking this, the final official day of winter break, in four ways. First, instead of making some ill-conceived attempt to work (and not really succeeding), this morning I went to my first ever Pilates class. Second, I am listening to WNCW today, instead of the music I work to. Third, I am going to take a stab at finishing my book, which would mean reading 200 pages. (Luckily, it is a mystery, so this is possible. Also luckily, it is vacation, so everything does not have to be about achieving goals.) Fourth, I have just laundered most of the fleece clothing in the house (not inconsiderable), so since the dryer recently buzzed, I am now wearing hot fleece--ahhhhh.

But I am not writing this to talk about vacation; I am writing about plans. Specifically, I am thinking about "resolutions" for the year, and about assessment. Quite a few people say that most New Year's Resolutions go down the flusher pretty quickly because they are vague and often a little over-ambitious. So, here are seven resolutions, and then seven swimming goals. I am writing them here so I have a record of them.


1. Swim 150 yards or more of butterfly in every swim practice. This goal started as a "swim more fly" sort of goal, but OK, assessable. The 150 yards does not have to happen all at once, but it will require me to swim fly in "choice" sets, which I am not always inclined to do. 150 yards feels like it will require diligence, but it will not kill me. By summer, I would like to be swimming 300 yards of fly in each practice.

2. Find non-computer-related break activities and use them to replace aimless internet searching, doing several days worth of Washington Post sudoku at a time, etc. The PP pointed out recently that I used to do more gardening at our other house, so this was a better break. I agree. Also, one of the people on the swim team pointed out last night that constant computer work may be causing some of my neck and shoulder pain. I am not happy that this resolution is phrased so vaguely, but I am not sure how to assess it, so there you are. I am thinking of things like cooking, gardening, reading books away from the desk, etc. as break activities for the days when I work at home. This next one is related:

3. Turn off internet and e-mail while working. This goal is partly about not overindulging in computer activity, but also about increasing productive work. There can be occasional exceptions, for when I am using the internet as a part of my research--but no play.

4. Eat one salad, one large piece of fruit, and one other vegetable per day. This is an attempt to make "more fruits and vegetables" real, and my thought is that substantial portion sizes will get me closer to those USDA requirements. And back off, all you nutrition nuts! I am trying to be realistic!

5. Exercise 4-5 days per week instead of 3-5. That explains itself. Exercise can include swimming or strength training, but not leisurely walks around town, although those are a good bonus. When summer comes, and teaching goes away, then we raise the bar to 5-6 days per week.

6. Do shoulder exercises every other day and also stretch on those days. I fell off this wagon when the semester ended. Ahoy!

7. Ice sore shoulder after swim practice. Not necessary after every practice--only when it is hurting. This will be more fun now that the PP's fabulous mother has given me excellent icing equipment and I can say goodbye to the leaky plastic bag filled with melting cubes.

There. Those are the plans for the year. I will also post them here at my desk.

Now, swimming goals for this year. I do not want to set time goals around my breaststroke, because that would require upping my training from last year, and I do not see that as realistic, or even desirable. So instead, I want to target events that I usually ignore or avoid--a lot of butterfly and backstroke, both of which I have been working on in practice.


1. Swim 200 back in competition. I have only swum this even as a part of a postal meet, never in a regular meet.

2. Swim 200 fly in competition. Ditto #1.

3. Swim 1000 SCY free in competition. I have never done this race, although I have swum the mile once and also the 500 several times. This is the only race that I have no time for, if you include postal meet times for the 200 back and 200 fly.

4. Swim 400 IM strong in competition. I tend to avoid this race, or else really slack it. I want to try to beat my previous best time (6:06.47 SCY). That time is from November 2004, and every time since then that I have swum it (all of twice, one of them postal, one in a regular meet) I have gotten slower.

5. Beat previous best time in 100 SCY back and SCM in competition. (1:23.67 for SCY, 1:33.45 for SCM, and that SCM time is from December 2004, before I began writing about swimming.)

6. Beat previous best time in 100 SCY fly in competition. (1:16.73) This will be tough, because I was hauling ass in that race, even beating all but one of the other people (read: 13-14 year old girls) in my heat.

7. In one week during the summer, swim every practice that my masters team offers. This has to happen in the summer, because it is logistically impossible with my teaching schedule. The practice schedule includes 7 x 1.5 hour sessions, M-Th pm and T/Th/Sa am. I will have to work up to this, to avoid injury.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Look what I went and did.

So in the spirit of the end of my previous post, I wrote an e-mail to Coach, saying I enjoyed that fast freestyle set, even though I did not perform as well as I had hoped, and that I thought that maybe perhaps possibly it was time to up the ante. He wrote back and said, "I'm ready to push a bit more if you are...."

Looks like now I have to make good on that challenge.

Stay tuned....

Statistical analysis and last night's practice: Feel free to skip.


I am starting a new workout log today: for once, my little notebook ran out right as the year was running out. How exciting to have a brand new cover and everything. My old log has quite the tattered cover, and it has the 2006 SCY national qualifying times stapled in the front, with the 30-34 times highlighted as a reminder of what the goals were. 2006's yardage amounted to 569,550, whereas in 2005 I swam 480,075, and in 2004 I swam 482,000. (Incomplete data for 2003--sorry).

Obviously 2006 was a bigger year than the two previous, but I do not think that reading these numbers in terms of calendar years tells a very accurate story. If we read the data in terms of seasons, then we see
2003-4: 324, 625
2004-5: 452,775
2005-6: 612,125
2006-7: incomplete data

That data wrap-up shows how last year I really swam quite a bit more than in previous years, even though I was on a generally upward trend in all three years. And if we want to look at the data in terms of August-December, so that we can also compare this year's so-called achievement, here is what we find:
2003-4 Aug-Dec: 166,050*
2004-5 Aug-Dec: 227,425
2005-6 Aug-Dec: 254,725
2006-7 Aug-Dec: 212, 150
* no data for 12 weeks in 2003, so I
estimated this figure based on average yardage per week for the year. Let's not
give it much statistical significance, shall we?

Now, THAT tells us something--namely, that I am off the mark for the first half of this year. I am not surprised, given that in 2004-5 and 2005-6 I was swimming with the children's team a couple of days a week, in addition to regular masters practice.

But let's let fall 2006 be bygone, and move on to now:

Last night's practice was a bit of a doozy. Frequently my evening practices are about 3500 yards, but this one went 4000, and with an extra challenge: the water was only 78 F (so said the lifeguard). This is only a few degrees cooler than the usual water temperature, but MAN was it cold. I felt like I never really warmed up, in that my muscles were tight and jerky the whole time. And by the end of the second main set, my toes felt cold. Yuck. But as Coach says, these are the joys of Westside. I tried to argue that because of the temperature I would not need to ice my shoulder afterwards, but he just gave me that look.

It was a good workout, so in the spirit of good starts, I'll note it down:

1000 warm-up (5 x 200 choice, switching every 200)
600 kick set (4 x [3 x 50 kick], one round for each stroke, descend within round)
200 drill/swim
1200 main set (6 x 200, for each: 75 stroke + 50 free + 75 stroke; for the stroke swim fly/back, breast/fly, back/breast, two times through)
800 free (8 x 100 free on ~20 sec. rest: 3 x 100 moderate, 3 x 100 tempo, 2 x 100 FAP)
200 cool (as if I needed to cool off!!!)
TOT: 4000 yards, 1.5 hours

That IM set was tough, if only because 75 fly at one time is not easy for me--let ALONE when the 75 of fly came at the END of a 200. But it was a good set for training for 200 IM, or even 400 IM.

The freestyle set was also tough, but because I have not been doing that much fast swimming this season. (And probably the cold-induced tightness did not help.) Our new team's workouts seem to be more steady state swimming than our old team's, which had much more interval training and fast sets. So swimming the 8 x 100 free and trying to maintain an interval and raise intensity over the course of the set was tougher than it should have been.

Note to self: talk to Coach about including more fast swimming in practice.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Yes, I am a nerd. Why do you ask?

OK, OK, I plead guilty: but truly, if I were sitting somewhere other than my desk when I read Spence's blog, it might all have gone differently. Really!

Spence tagged me with this book game:

1. Find the nearest book.
2. Name the book & the author.
3. Turn to page 123.
4. Go to the fifth sentence on the page. Copy out the next three sentences and post to your blog.
5. Tag three more folks.

OK, here we go:
Book: Cosmopolitan Style: Modernism Beyond the Nation (Columbia UP, 2006)
Author: Rebecca L. Walkowitz

p. 123, 5th sentence and ff.:
"In The Remains of the Day, therefore, Ishiguro allows us to imagine that the text is not simply a description of England but an expression of it. For Ono in Artist, as for Stevens in Remains, the perceived authenticity of local characteristics depends on an exoticism displaced elsewhere. Ishiguro wants us to see that national traditions are forged by international encounters."

I suppose it could have been worse if, say, one of the hardcore textual criticism books had been closer to the top of the stack.

Just a friendly reminder that today is back to work day--but lucky for me, I don't have to go into the office until next week!

Let's see... I tag Jarrett, estaminet, Joe.