• 2010 Race Calendar

    01.17 - Samson Stomp 5K
    04.24 - Deer Run 10K
    05.01 - Door County Half Marathon
    07.11 - Pewaukee Triathlon
    08.01 - Bradford Beach Tri
    09.11 - TosaFest 5K

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Developing Power For The Swim

Yesterday was another big day on the treadmill.  I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to do speedwork or run for distance.  So I did something right in the middle.  The result was a 3.25 mile run in 25:39.  That works out to a 7:54 mile pace – a new best at that distance for me.  I’m a happy camper!

I also did this run without any type of knee support.  It turned out to be about 80% the right decision as I did experience some stiffness in my left knee during the last mile.  It wasn’t enough to make me feel like I wanted to stop but it was enough to tell me that I still need to keep a close eye on it going forward.  Some good stretching right afterwards, a short easy stretch on the bike to “unload” the legs and an ice pack later in the day all seemed to be the cure as my knee is feeling fine again.  I never would have guessed that staying loose and pain-free would be so much work!  Maybe I’m getting old.

Today, I’m back in the pool for another swim workout.  I talked to my brother (who’s a strength coach himself) about how to build endurance for the swim and he gave me a couple of ideas.

First, use what’s called a pull buoy.  This is a figure eight looking piece of foam that is placed between your thighs as you swim.  It accomplishes a couple of things – 1. It provides support to keep your rear end in the air while you swim and 2. forces you to engage your core to keep the buoy between your legs.  When using the pull buoy, your swim workout becomes essentially an upper body only workout so you’re using your energy to get your arms and shoulders to move you through the water instead of your legs.  It also gives you the opportunity to rotate your body a full 180 degrees to breathe on both sides which can be beneficial for a distance swim since most people are used to only going to one side to get a breath.

The second is lap swimming using closed fists.  It was explained to me that you should be using your entire forearm from the tips of your fingers to your elbows to move the water behind you instead of just your hands.  Closed fists force your arms to do most of the work and helps build up additional strength where you might be lacking.  Then, when you do use your hands to assist your arms in the swim it should make it that much easier.

Today also marks the day that I begin an earnest search for a road bike to use for the triathlon.  It’s been recommended that I look at a 2010 Trek 1.1 road bicycle.  It’s Trek’s entry level road bike but still should be everything I need to complete my first triathlon.  Plus, I really don’t feel like dropping several thousand dollars on a “fancy” bike.  Maybe when I become a professional triathlete I’ll upgrade!

Hope everybody has a great Wednesday!

3 Responses

  1. Love the swimming with closed fists tip…I will be stealing that for my own.
    You are getting me excited to do a tri!!!
    I might check out the Pewaukee one…I considered it in the past.
    adventures in tri-ing

  2. Oh man…I have a love/hate relationship with the pool buoy…those things rock!

  3. awesome tm run! doesn’t it just feel awesome when you know youve pushed yourself?

    good luck finding a good road bike too

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