Archive for masters swimming

In like a Lion

Posted in Triathlon with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 5, 2013 by brianestover

March is here, charging in with the roar of a lion after some lambs. And roar Chad Chad did. Over the last five miles of the Tuscaloosa Half Marathon he stalked the leader trimming the gap. In the closing miles he struck fast to win the race!

Adu Dhabi once again hosted the Abu Dhabi triathlon. The first major triathlon race of 2013 loaded with a star studded field, is always a look into who’s hot and who’s not. Nick and Daniel made the journey to race this year. This was Daniel’s first long course race and he finished 9th in his age group.

Nick closed out his age group career here. He repeated his results from last year, winning his age group, and placing as the 2nd overall age grouper on the day. This year he moved up 11 spots to finish 11th overall including the pros. Watch for Nick at a pro race near you, as he will be joining the pro ranks and making his pro debut at Ironman South Africa.

Nick Baldwin in Abu Dhabi

Nick Baldwin in Abu Dhabi

Dusty raced one of the season opening races in CA, the Desert Triathlon. Dusty lead his age group off the bike and ended up second. He’s been battling some running injuries over the last 6 months and we expect nothing but faster run times as the season progresses.

Dusty at the Desert Triathlon

Dusty at the Desert Triathlon

I encourage all my athletes to try racing different events in the early season. Like many of my athletes Adam has taken me up on the offer for the second weekend in a row. Last weekend was a time trial, this weekend was a masters swim meet. His first swim meet. He did a wide variety of free style events, from the 50 to the 1650 as well as swimming on some relays. For a rookie he did pretty good, grabbing some top 3 finishes in his age group and cracking 1:00 in the 100 free on his first attempt.

Once a Fish

Posted in Swimming, Triathlon with tags , , on August 8, 2010 by brianestover

always a fish. Or so I’ve been told by numerous swim coaches and have told numerous individuals. Swimming is such a technical sport, that those who swam as kids who an advantage over those who pick up swimming as adults. Take a mediocre at best age group swimmer, keep them out of the water for several years then have them pick up triathlon. That mediocre at best swimmer after 3 months of swimming will be a front of the pack swimmer. An adult who picks up swimming to do triathlons will almost never make it to the front pack. It’s just not going to happen except in the rarest of occasions. What is worse, for the adult who takes up swimming later in life anyway, is that the former swimmer will only have to train about 40% of what the adult does to get faster.

To keep things fair though, that mediocre swimmer will probably never be as fast as the person who went on to swim in college. It’s just the way the world works. Go to any masters swim group and you’ll see the progression down the lanes. Where I used to swim there was the Olympian/National/Elite level lane. You had to have been one of the best in the world at one point to swim in this lane. They warmed up about as fast as I did intervals. Rather cruel really. Then you’ve got the college swimmer lanes. These will get sub divided between NCAA qualifiers/All Americans and regular college swimmers. Then you get the AG swimmer lanes and finally it progresses down to the triathlete lanes. Or if you were my former swim club, you just had a separate practice for them.

I bring all this up because I went swimming yesterday. Swam once in the last four weeks previous to this. I still ripped off a 1650 short course yard set holding 1:20-:21 for the longer intervals and 1:15-:16 for the shorter intervals. There were the thoughts floating around in the back of my head that most triathletes if they took four weeks out of the water they would struggle for the next two months trying to get back into swim shape. Where many swimmers turned triathletes will take 2-3 months (or more in my case) out of the water and be in relatively good shape in two to three weeks. In some respects, former swimmers will always have a bigger ROI in their swimming because they’ve invested a larger % of the youth into swimming. For every yard they now swim, their triathlete buddies will have to swim 5 or 6 or more to make an equal leap in swim speed.

Hence the saying: Once a fish, always a fish.