Saturday, November 26, 2005

Endurance Swim Training and Running on Ice


Last night was swim class #8, our instructor split the six of us into two groups. Three in our group are still having a lot of trouble with the breast stroke, so the teacher spent most of the night trying to bring them up to speed. The other three of us got a special assignment, some endurance training. The instructor gave us a list of various combinations of 50M laps to perform, for example 25M freestyle/25M breast stroke, 25M freestyle kick on our back/25M breast stroke, and so on for a total of 600 meters. I was the only one to complete all of these before the end of the class, the other two ran out of steam. All in all it was a good workout! I swam another 400 meters breast stroke after class to complete my 1000 meter goal for the night.

At the end of the class the instructor told me that she talked with the trainer that trains the triathlon group – they have a couple night where they train, I only need to show up when I want to start training. Cool! The instructor also said I should take the freestyle course before I participate, there is a course starting in January. Too cool!

Finally she also told me straight out that I am not a natural breast stroke swimmer, but I show promise as a freestyle swimmer due to my strong kick and endurance. She went on to say I need to start concentrating on the freestyle, especially the breathing. So I have work to do!


I was up at 6 a.m. and on the run by 6:30 this morning. I had a 24K/15M run on the schedule, the temperature was -2C/28F, the roads and bike paths were icy and treacherous, I was wearing my new running shoes and my new running pants. What could stop me! The icy conditions played in my favor, forcing me to keep my 6:00/K (9:39/M) pace. It was cold, but I was dressed for it. The first half hour was particularly dangerous because it was still dark out, I gingerly picked my way along the bike trail towards Karlsruhe. As I neared the city it was noticeably warmer, the paths were dry and I had some relief. I crossed the 10K point with a time of 59:06, which was right on pace, but kind of surprising considering the trail conditions.

Just after the 11K point I took a right, then after a couple hundred meters another right which put me on the return trail. I was feeling good, was already working on emptying the sport drink in my CamelBak and the new Asics GT2100’s were feeling good. Nothing like breaking in new shoes with a 15M run!

By the 20K/12M point my legs were getting a little tired, a combination of the asphalt path and slippery conditions (the trail was icy again after about the 13K point). But rather than wimping out and taking a walk break like I did on my last long run, I picked up the pace determined to have a good run today. After a few minutes I settled back into my 6:00/K pace and kept it up until I got home, taking an extra lap around the block for good measure. My pace for the 24K/15M run was 5:58/K (9:36/M), almost exactly the time I had planned on!

I am well pleased with both my new Asics shoes and the running pants. Have a great weekend!

You're doing great Jack! I hope the new shoes didn't cause any blisters, and please be very careful on those icy roads.
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