Monday, April 26, 2010

Fastlane in the pool

Nothing major to report, all is good. I had a nice and easy ride on Saturday and a 3-hour reverse brick on Sunday. The weather was horrible and Sunday was a busy day. NBB had a birthday party. I had something that I had to be at all morning, plus Rene had a running test she had to do for her training PLUS a guy was helping me out at the house doing some wrap up to the construction project. With all of this, it was a three hour revers brick indoors (EWWWWW) but it was fine. It was supposed to be an aerobic effort and all was good. I ate Subway before I started and did two Gu's durring and had plenty of energy for the effort. Indoors is really handy, especially since the kids are too young to be home by themselves, however, the bike workout is never as good as outside.

The highlight of the weekend was swimming. Although the weather wasn't great, I was able to use the Fastlane for really the first time. I tried it out last year but with the pool water not being full it wasn't great. However, Saturday it was nice. I had a 35 minute aerobic swim. I set the fastland on a 1:50/100 pace, put the mirror on the bottom of the pool (to check form) and away I went. No turns, just swimming and it was pretty awesome. It truly is the closest thing to open water swimming that I have found and in some ways I think it is better practice than anything I have tried so far. The laminar resistance forces you to streamline in the water and when you are not, it is very apparent especially with the mirror. You actually drift backwards and that acts as a visual cue you are more resistant so naturally you auto adjust. The downside is that once you start swimming and as you improve during the set you actually move forward in the mirror. This is obviously a good thing however, it does interrupt your swimming. When this happens you have two choices 1) Slow down your stroke oR 2) increase the current. Another beneift is the current hitting the top of your head forces your to breath effectively. Because the water is moving past you, if you don't breath correctly you get a mouthful of water (very much like tubulence found in OWS during a race).

I swam at the above pace for 25 minutes and found myself swimming into the machine (again, this showed improvement during my swim). Also, the instant mirror feedback showed that I was "crossing over" my centerline with my recovery hand as I was thrusting it forward in the water. I immediately went "wider" and my stroke improved. The last 10 minutes I set the swimlane on 1:35/100 and this is very fast for me. I focused on staying "in the mirror" and this was tough but a great workout.

In summary, I can see this thing really helping my swimming. I would like to try both Rene and I swimmming in the current at the same time. I have read that the current is both wide and deep enough for this to work but we will see. This to me would be very openwater like since we would have to swim in pretty close proximity to one another. Lastly, once I use it for a month or so I would like to have get coached by Jennifer or by Hap at the pool. I would be able to swim while they make adjustments in my body position.

I am very glad we put it in the budget when we decided on a pool. This will provide years and years of swimming for Rene, the kids, and I. I need to look online and see if there are any videos that teach kids how to swim from scratch using the fastlane so I can get the kids swimming since they have already found the benefits of body surfing with it.

All of now and I will be thinkingof the ABQ Outlaws this week as the prep for St. George. I found some pics on line of the course and it looks absolutely beautiful. Go Get Em Boys (and girls). I am there in spirit and can't wait until my race season begins in 27 days.

Tracy Butler

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