6.26.2014

2 Miles at Bountiful Lake


I met Sarah at Bountiful Lake this morning for a swim. She had never seen the fish jumping out of the water in the morning, and thought it was pretty cool.  I was going to do laps around the edge of the lake, but there were a handful of fishers on the shore. Instead I decided to do "big loops" like I did with Lisa last week.

Sarah's thermometer read 64 degrees, but it felt much warmer than when I was here last week and the temperature was the same.  Maybe it felt warmer because the air temperature was so warm this morning.  Visibility was about two feet and the water was glass.

I took it easy for the first two laps. On the third lap, I decided to switch it up a bit and swim 100 strokes easy / 100 strokes fast all the way around.  After that, I added one loop around the first island, just to be sure that I got a solid two miles in.

I've been thinking a lot about the 11-mile Dam 2 Dam swim coming up in August.  I need to get at least one long (6-ish miles) open water swim in before then.

6.20.2014

Morning Swim at Bountiful Lake


This morning I met Brendan and Lisa at Bountiful Lake for a morning swim.

The water was cooler than expected at 64 degrees, but once we got in and moving it felt pretty comfortable.

It was Lisa's first time swimming at Bountiful Lake and we decided to swim some laps with the islands on one side of the loop and the two docks on the other side of the loop.  It ended up being a shorter distance than I thought.  We were in the water for about an hour and did three loops, just under two miles.  It was a beautiful morning, especially when the sun came up over the mountains.  We saw a few anglers and a few paddle boards out on the water as we were finishing up.

I met Brendan on Wednesday night.  He is visiting from Colorado for the summer and really wants to do a solo swim at the Bear Lake Monster Swim in July.  He has been swimming at Bountiful Lake every day since Wednesday and has a plan for getting in some yards at the pool.  Today he swam laps around the first island.  I didn't get a chance to catch up to him and see how he did, since he was gone when we finished.  I'm excited for him to be working towards such an awesome goal!  He could become the youngest person to do a solo width crossing of Bear Lake!

Here's the link to my HydroTracker log:

http://www.finisinc.com/streamline/share/workout/view/53a4604de3d71

6.18.2014

Facing the "Red Mist"

I had planned to swim at Jordanelle this morning with Goody, Liz and Lisa, but after the freak weather storm yesterday, I decided to hit the pool rather than freeze my butt off.

I've been wanting to do a workout from Swim Smooth that I read about recently called the "Red Mist" set.  (Just as a side note, the Swim Smooth blog is one of the best sources for swimming related articles on the internet. I was lucky enough to meet Swim Smooth founders Paul Newsome and Adam Young last year and I have been incredibly impressed with their program). "Red Mist" refers to the creeping feeling of frustration, anger, and a desire to give up, that you experience when swimming this set. I've read stories on the blog about swimmers who do this set and feel like they are just flailing their arms at the end. That's exactly what I was looking for this morning, good old fashioned punishment. I haven't felt the "red mist" since my high school swimming days, and wanted to get a taste of it this morning.

The "Red Mist" set is designed to be physically and mentally challenging. It even comes with it's own warning: "You may not like this but it's good for you!" It's basically a 4,000 yard workout at an increasingly faster pace as you progress. The pace is based on Critical Swim Speed (CSS), which is kind of the core of Swim Smooth's training. Critical Swim Speed is a target training pace that is determined by swimming a 400 as fast as possible, followed by a 200 as fast as possible (after recovering from the 400) and entering those times into a calculator. When we did the test at Fairmont a while back, my CSS was 1:18 / 100 yards.

Here's the Red Mist set:

I started with an easy 600 warm-up (in retrospect, I should have done a bit more).

4 x 400 @ CSS + 6 (1:24 / 100 yd)
3 x 400 @ CSS + 5 (1:23 / 100 yd)
2 x 400 @ CSS + 4 (1:22 / 100 yd)
1 x 100 @ CSS + 3 (1:21 / 100 yd)

You get 30 seconds rest between sets of 400, and that's it.

Now that I am done with the swim, I'm a little disappointed that I didn't come face-to-face with the "red mist" that other swimmers talked about. I was able to keep a pretty strong stroke and breathing pattern throughout. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't a walk it the park, I was just expecting it to be much more difficult based on what I had read. This may be a sign that my CSS has decreased since the last time I was tested and that I'm getting a little faster.

I like this set a lot and plan to add it to my weekly routine. It went by much faster than I expected (because you are basically swimming the whole thing non-stop). I think it will be a good way to gauge my progress over time. Next time I will try lowering the CSS pace to 1:17 and see if I can get a taste of the "red mist".

Have you felt the "red mist" during a workout? I'd love to hear about it.

6.01.2014

Warm and Windy Swim at the Great Salt Lake

Yesterday afternoon I drove out to the Great Salt Lake Marina to drop of a check to Dave Shearer, GSL Harbormaster, for our special use permit and use of the State Parks boats for the upcoming Great Salt Lake Open Water Swim this Saturday. I talked to him for a bit about the event and got a few other things taken care of.

There was a group that was going to swim around the same time, so I got suited and greased up and met Sue, Todd, and Chad in the parking lot. We waited for a while for a few other people who were going to come, and then got in. The water felt pretty good. Really warm on the surface and cool just below. My thermometer read 74 degrees in the marina, but that was in shallow water and the marina is typically warmer than outside in the main body of the lake. Once we got out of the marina, the water felt a bit cooler, but it was probably still 70 degrees.

The water is much clearer than the last time I was out there. The brine shrimp are doing their job, eating the algae. I couldn't see the bottom, but visibility was probably a good six feet or so. It was pretty choppy outside the marina and I took in a couple mouth fulls of saltwater. We swam out to the third buoy and Sue and Todd turned around. Chad and I kept going to the fourth buoy and then turned around. There were several boats on the water and I was sighting more than usual to make sure we weren't going to get hit.

On the way back, I saw a couple people just outside the marina. I assumed it was Sue and Todd, but when I got back to the boat ramp, it turned out to be Rachel and her friend Anna (who was swimming at GSL for the first time).

Water conditions should be good for this Saturday and so far, the weather looks like it will be nice. There is still time to register for the swim. Prices go up on Wednesday. Click here for the registration page.