Utah Masters State Championship Meet

Saturday was the Utah Masters State Championship Meet at the brand new pool at Olympus High School.   Even though I didn't get the times I was after, it was a fun meet and a beautiful pool.

I finally got to meet Donald Barrus, who is a member of SLOW who lives in Wyoming.  He's a nice guy and I had a lot of fun talking to him.  Other SLOW members who were at the meet were Gordon, Goody, and Kevin Johnson.  Some of my Fairmont teammates were also there: Chris, Steve, Marie and our coach Max.  There were a lot of other swimming buddies there that I had fun catching up with and watching them swim.

Going to a Masters meet is pretty inspiring.  I think a lot of people are turned of by "Masters" thinking that it's all ex-college swimmers or something, and it's really not the case.  There are all types and abilities who participate.  There was even an 80+ year old lady competing!  It was awesome to watch her swim and I hope I am still entering meets at that age.

I had a bunch of other things going on that afternoon, so I was only able to swim two of the four events I had registered for: 50 free and 100 free.  I knew as soon as I got in the pool to warm up that I probably wasn't going to get the times I wanted.  I just felt off.  I probably should have gone to practice on Friday and just warmed up instead of taking the day off.

On the 50 free I was shooting for a qualifying time for short course nationals (even though I'm not planning to go to the meet).  I'm right on the edge of two age groups and the time to get was 25.14 for my current age group and 25.36 for the age group I will soon be in.  I ended up getting 25.57, which isn't bad, but I know I can make both of those qualifying times.

On the 100 free I was also shooting for a qualifying time, although this was much more of a long shot.  The qualifying times are 55.27 (too fast for me right now) and 56.34 (I might be able to get down to this time).  I entered at 57.00, which I have done in practice.  I wanted to hold back a little on the first 50 and go all out on the last 50.  I realized halfway down the pool on the first 50 that I went out WAY too slow.  I tried picking it up on the second 25 and really went all out on the last 50.  Gordon took some video and you can tell how much I had left in the tank because I caught a guy next to me on the last 25 that was pretty far ahead.  I love hearing Gords and Goody cheering for me on the video!  It's awesome to have such great team support.  To show how slow I went out on the first 50, my splits were 28.47 and 29.41.  I should have been at least 1 second faster on the first 50.

Here's the video.

Even though we didn't all get the times we were shooting for, I think the team had a good meet overall.  If nothing else, it was a lot of fun.  It would have been nice to start a little earlier and take fewer breaks, but the Olympus team did a great job organizing the meet.  I hope to swim in their pool again, hopefull a little faster next time :)

Here are the meet results.


First Real Open Water Swim of the Year

Yesterday afternoon I was finally able to meet with the Salt Lake Open Water (SLOW) club for a swim at the Great Salt Lake Marina.  It was my first real open water swim of the year and first time back to the lake since New Year's.

We had a pretty good group consisting of Gordon, Goody, Sarah, Mike, Karl, and myself.  Mike is planning to do the 8 mile Great Salt Lake Open Water Marathon Swim this June and it was his first time swimming in the GSL.

I talked with Gordon and Mike in the parking lot while we waited for everyone else to show up.  I showed them the new brine shrimp medals for this year's race and they were both impressed.  We took the medal into the gift shop and showed it to them and talked about the possibility of selling them as keychains in the gift shop.  The woman running the visitor's center thought they were awesome and Gordon has already made contact with the decision maker about getting them in the shop.

Once everyone was there, we headed down to the boat ramp and got greased up and ready to go.  The water felt pretty chilly when we first got in.  The GSL website was reporting 50 degrees, but I think it was a little warmer than that.

We swam out to the red buoy just outside the marina and regrouped.  Karl and Mike were headed back and Goody went with them.  Gordon, Sarah and I swam out to the next buoy and back.  The water was a little murky, but seemed warmer outside of the marina.  In most places, the first foot or two of the water was pretty warm with much colder water below.  We spent so much time inside the marina during polar bear season, that it was really nice to be out in the open lake.

When we got back to the first buoy, Good was there waiting for us.  Goody had spent the day celebrating being one year cancer free.  At the buoy he swam over and gave me a hug and thanked me for being supportive during that tough time of his life.  He is a great friend and we are really lucky to have him as part of our team.

I swam back to the boat ramp and talked with Mike and Karl until everyone else finished swimming.  We all talked for a while longer and then went our separate ways.

I'm already looking forward to our swim next Wednesday...