Tuesday, September 24, 2013


I am postponing this swim due to family obligations. 

I will be helping my best friend train and crewing for his English Channel swim in 2014.

Bear Lake, I promise you, I will be back. Promise. 2015?


Saturday, September 14, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Newark, Delware. SCM Outdoor Pool
Time:2:00-3:00 pm
Distance: 3000 Meters

Last day of the outdoor pool. Sigh. I grew up in Florida training outside year around. It's been years since swimming outside since my high school days. I do enjoy it.  The unpredictable weather makes the swims more interesting indeed!

Weather was on the chilly side. My car said 65 when I pulled up to the pool. Breezy and mostly cloudy. Someone joked that we were the Polar Bear club. Ha the dude has no idea what temperatures I've swam in (mostly to help train my friend, Lelane, with her ice swim !)  Never forget the day of Lelane's Ice Swim. She probably picked the coldest day of the year. It hurt to stand outside. Brrr...I swam Lelane in to shore..in yes, a wetsuit, neoprene hat, gloves. ha. I was still freaking shaking like a leaf for an hour after that swim with her!

Anyway, not feeling great lately. Super stuffy nose. Difficult to get enough air while swimming. Like swimming with a clothes pin on your nose. Fun! Sinuses clogged and achy. Yay. Mind over matter. Not sure when to call it quits some days.

1000 Warm Up
1000 Kick w/fins
5 x 100's pull
500 steady pace

=whopping 3000 Meters. Wasnt pretty but still enjoyable to swim outside one last time!!!!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, SCY Outdoor Pool (only open through the weekend!! BOO!! Then inside pool swimming until next summer. UGH)

Time: 9:00-10:30 am
Distance: 4100 yards

Weather is PERFECT for swimming today. 70 degrees, overcast, breezy. Water temp maybe upper 70's. I was happy. Felt so much better than the day before.

1000 warm up Free
8 x 25's swim on the :30 (alternated Fly and free)
6 x 200's Pull
50 easy
4 x 200's Kick with fins (no kickboard, 6 beat kick and reverse side)
50 east
2 x 200's Free hard
400 Cool Down

 (swam yesterday, September 12, 2013)
Location: Western YMCA, Newark, DE, SCY Outdoor pool
Time: 1:30-2:45
Distance: 4000 yards

It's been SO hot these past few days here. We are talking off the scale humidity. Poor air quality. So, swimming outside at this time of day was brutle. Taking a breath was torture. My allergies have been bad too lately. So, I'm gasping for air as it is. Phew.

1000 Warm up Free
800- 8 x 100's kick Free with fins
1600- 16 x 100's pull on 1:30 (just barely made these..)
800-  4 x 200's Drill for first two 200's and kicked for other two
400 Free bld
200 Cool Down

Not the greatest practice for me. Tired and hot!!!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Delaware, SCY Outdoor pool
Time: 11:45-1:00 pm
Distance: 4000 yards

Ok. Promise you won't see a blog post tomorrow. I actually waited around this morning for the UPS guy to show up with my Waterproof Ipod (early birthday present). Gave me 24 hours recovery since last swim.... Anyway, I've used music off and on over the years. I'm not sure it's good to use all of the time. I don't want to rely on music so much that when I can't use it (e.g.-Bear Lake crossing), I won't go completely insane. Sometimes I even take the music off after half the workout. But come on, how can Justin Timberlake not help keep my groove going?

So my two swimmer buddies showed up again. Competitive swimmers. Honestly it's a rare find around this area. Neither of them talk to me nor even say hello. Weird swimmers. We are all to proud for our own good maybe. Maybe someday they will be so impressed by my swimming abilities they will ask what I'm training for and I can share my goals. (ha keep dreaming Alison). For now, it's all in my own head. Maybe I'll keep it that way.

So, DAY 10 of swimming. 

Altered workout from what was given:

1000 warm up (choose not to pull..swam it all Free)

8 x 25 swimming with focus and strong kick. ( HAD to throw in some butterfly. I love butterfly...for 25's  anyway )

6 x 200 (1,4th easy, 2nd and 5th strong, 4th high effort).....I noticed something I've never felt during this set today. Chest pain. I don't mean like heart attack type pain but more like either my lungs or just my chest muscles hurt. I got better as I continued but for a few 200's I was hurting.)

50 easy recover

4 x 200 moderate pace (ok so I pulled on two of these..burned out beyond belief at this point)

50 easy recover

2 x 200 hard (swam one and kicked one..sorry..complete toast)

100 easy

200 pull easy 

=4000 SCY

Monday, September 9, 2013

Location: The USUAL, Western YMCA, Newark, DE, SCY outdoor pool
Time: 10:30-11:45
Distance: 4300 yards

I'm sick. I'm very very sick. I told myself that I wasn't going to swim today. I needed to do something else. Run, do weights, something. Ha.Yeah Right. What is it about swimming that nothing else can do to fill this soul of mine? I suppose I know I have a gift. And it certainly isn't running or biking! ;)
So headed out a little later than usual to swim today. Good thing I did. I guess these fellows that showed up were on their lunch break. I hit the jackpot when about 4 studly dudes filled the lanes all around me. Ha. Sorry. I love swimming these macho hot shot dudes who can't believe a woman my age can swim. Yeah, they were basically faster than I. It's okay. I bet they weren't on their 9th consecutive day of swimming either! ;) They didn't last long in the water either. Endurance over speed maybe  my new motto!

Anyway, I was tired from the moment I jumped in. Sore. Sore calves, sore arms, and just sleepy. I knew which workout I'd choose. No equipment today. Just lots of (barfy) 100's on the clock. I know it's what I need. Bring it on.

300 Warm up loosen
1200- 12 x 100 on 1:40 (hit the wall at 1:30 about every time. This is WAY too slow....Not happy with that.)
200 4 x 50 recovery. Easy..Mixed in a little BR and Fly (not sure what I'm doing as far as Master's swim meets this year......)
1000- 8 x 100 on 1:40, stronger effort (again on 1:30 mostly. Maybe 1:28 )
200-4 x 50 recovery (think I came to a halt swimming here..the dudes swimming beside me probably lost all respect for me after seeing this)
400- 4 x 100 on 1:35 FAST (omg. Sorry but this was rough. Burned out. Alternated Free with IM on these) Fastest time on the Free was 1:25. Ugh. 

*Now, question is..do I take off tomorrow? Swim through the soreness and pain? If I hated swimming, the answer would be easy. Problem is ..I love it.

(swam on September 8, 2013)

Location: Western Y, Newark Delaware, SCM Outdoor pool (my fav..love SCM)
Time: 2:00-2:45 pm
Distance: 2500 meters

You would think weekends would allow me to get in more distance however my schedule is mainly the opposite. Weekends equate to passing the kids back and fourth and who is doing what while the other watches the kids. I ended up getting in a short block of time and my 11 year old son wanted to come along (yes this kid can swim!) I knew getting in a real swim would be a challenge. My son would ask me each time I was at the wall how many laps I had swam. Little does he know I have no idea how many laps I did. He pretty much put it into perspective for me. I love how he admires my swimming skills. I think it's great for kids to see their parents working hard and having goals!!!

ANYWAY..rambling again.

200 IM warm up (yuck..ha IM can't be a warm up, can it?)
800- 8 x 100's free (did these on 1:45)
1000- 4 x 250's pull alt between touch and pull and reg.pull
500- 100 kick, 4 x 100's Drill (fist, fingertip, then last 2 x 100's easy free)

Had planned on doing 3000 but with my sweet little son all dressed and starting at me, and my shoulder bothering me as well, oh and threatening skies, I called it a day.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Newark, Delaware, SCM Outdoor pool
Time: 9:100-10:30
Distance: 6000 Meters/6500 Yards

YAY!!!! Finally I got in some decent distance. Finally some motivation. Maybe what's motivating me is  the Memphre swim in which my swim buddies are partaking in as I type here. I was actually signed up to do that swim this year. But then knew with a service dog coming that I wouldn't be able to train like I needed to.  I attempted Memphre (25 miles from VT to Canada) as a relay a few years ago and the cold got to me (surprise..ha but not just me. Many others pulled for cold or injuries) I was a crew person for my best buddy, Bill Shipp, last year as well for Memphre. Witnessing that swim was extraordinary. These marathon swims are intriguing. I love swimming in the dark myself. But it's also a time when it's cold and quiet. I did a 10 mile training swim last year for Memphre and my goal was 17 miles. I made 10. Again. The cold got me. Most of the swimming was in the dark. And even once daylight hit, it was a cold and rainy Fall day. Picked a bad day for that swim!

So...rambling here. Back to the topic of today's swim. 
Super sunny with some chill to the air. I thought this morning, "oh perfect..I can swim in some colder conditions." Well, HA. The pool is now heated and too damn hot. The sun was also blazing down on me. So, that took some time to get accustomed too. 

Here's my workout.....I liked it actually. :)

2000 Free swim
1500 Pull (I'll admit my left shoulder started hurting. I'm always curious why my right shoulder never hurts. I must be a tad off balance and pulling more instead of rotating my body .. work on this!!)
1000 Kick with Fins
800 Free

(......hit 5300 and said oh shoot, gotta make this even....
200 rotating breaststroke and Free easy

(....well shoot I made it to 5500. Why not just get to 6000....?)

5 x 100's swimming the first 25 of each butterfly. 

=6000 Meters DONE.

I probably could have kept going. I was on a roll. But knew I had family waiting for me back home.
Finally. Something over 4000. Ready to up my yardage on a regular basis. Time to get to work here.:) 

Time to go check on the progress of my swimmer friends, including Sarah Thomas swimming a DOUBLE Memphre (50 miles!) She just swam a double Lake Tahoe 6 weeks ago! WOW WOW WOW!!!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Newark, Delaware, SCY Outdoor pool
Time:  9:30-10:45
Distance:  3500 yards

Glorious Friday morning but I'll admit I was moving slow today. The outdoor temperature has finally dropped. I love it. I enjoy the challenge of swimming outside when the temperatures drop. I know its what I need to work on A LOT more to prepare for Bear Lake next year. It's not that the cold bothers me that much, however my body is unpredictable, suffering from hypothermia after only 8 miles in VT this past July. I am hoping that it was all caused by a long time medication I was taking. I soon after had medically induced Lupus. I've been fine ever since getting off the medicine and hope never to get hypothermia so easily ever again.

Anyway, I was kinda in a grumpy mood. You know. The negative self talk "I don't wanna be here. Where are all the good looking guys today? ( hey I can look..) Gosh, I need music so bad and my darn Ipod is broken". Ha all of that. I did find that after about 500 yards into swimming my attitude changed some. I started feeling more confident and more into race mode if you want to call it that.:) Again, swimming is so mental. For me anyway. 

So, WITHOUT a workout from Mr. Gordon..hint hint....I just made it all up as I went along. I'm too easy on myself and can't do this much longer.

1000 warm up Free, moderate pace
4 x 250's pull Free
5 x 200's kick with fins
2 x 250's swim

=3500 yards

I know. It's time to up the yardage. I've been swimming for like a week straight. Ha ..that in itself is an accomplishment for me I'd say lately.:)
Debating on an outside, ow swim tomorrow with maybe the jellies or just a long SCM swim outside...............hmmm......
(swam September 5, 2013)

Location: Bear YMCA, Bear, DE, SCY Inside, very warm pool
Time: 11:00-11:30
Distance: 2500 yards

Was one of those days yesterday. Drove all the way across town. Having some stomach pains from what has been an ovarian cyst. Knew the swim would be a challenge but also that swimming is much more realistic than a run when not feeling well.  Got to the pool with the sign we all fear. "Pool closed due to contamination. Will reopen at 7:00 pm" (note it was only 10:00 am when I arrived.) Ugh. Threw me all off. There aren't any other outdoor pools open in the area after Labor Day. Welcome to the North. I grew up in Florida where we swim outside year around. The Western Y's indoor pool is known to be hot. My other option was to drive across town to a different Y with an indoor pool, in hopes it wouldn't be 90 degrees. 
So that's what I did. Only 3 lap lanes available. Pool was very warm. Maybe upper 80's. Felt great until I started actually swimming. Ha oh well. Did 2500 yards and called it a day once an elderly man asked to share a lane with me and hit me good each time he swam by me :) 
Some day I will own my own lap pool.........

Warm up- 2 x 500's free
500 Pull
500 Kick
2 x 250's Free swim

=2500 pathetic yards.....

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Newark, Delaware, SCY Outdoor Pool
Distance: 4000 yards

I actually considered running or doing some cross training today. But the sun is shining and it's a gorgeous day to swim outside. I also brought a 7,000 yard workout with me. The intentions were there. The amount of time necessary wasn't. I need to get to the pool as early as possible to swim these longer swims. I seem to find any excuse not to do longer swims lately. Not sure where the motivation is hiding. It's ridiculous.

400 Warm Up Free
2100- 3 x (300 pull, 2 x 100 IM's on 1:45, 4 x 50's FAST on 1:00)
600 pull
400 kick with fins
2 x 250's  - 1st one build, 2nd cool down

(swam 9/3/2013)

Location: Western YMCA, Newark, Delaware, SCY outdoor pool
Distance:  3500 yards

Sorry!!! Not sure what I swam exactly. Last time I wait a day to blog my swim!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Wilmington, Delaware, Outdoor SCM Pool
Time: 11:15-12:30 pm
Distance: 4200 meters

Didn't swim as much as mentally, I wanted to. But physically not feeling well still (side pain), so happy with 4200 meters in an hour and 15 minutes. I am working on being mentally tougher. I swear swimming is like 80% mental. When I have self doubt, negative thoughts running through my head, I swim slow. If I can just flip that switch when I need to, I can do anything!!! All about believing in yourself, being in the moment, and swimming each swim like it's your last!!

600 Warm Up
300 Fast

500 Pull (Gosh I really love pulling)
200 strong
400 Kick with fins
100 Sprint
600 Pull
300 Fast
500 Pull
5 x 100's odd's IM, even's Free
200 Cool Down

=4200 meters/4500 yards

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Location:  Magothy River, Ulmstead Beach in Arnold, Maryland-open water swim
Time: 7:00-8:30 am
Total miles: 2

AH FINALLY back in the open water. It's been way too long. Always enjoy swimming with my ABC friends. They've been so supportive with my situation with my son with Autism. They helped raise a large chunk of the $13,500 for Nate's service dog. I have such gratitude for these friends. 
So, as real swimmers do, woke up before the sunrise this morning. 5:00 am. Left for Naptown around 5:30 and pulled up to the beach at 6:55. Gorgeous morning with the sun shining. Always my concern are the jellyfish. Call me a wimp, but I hate them. Like HATE getting stung. Guess no one likes it but really ruins the fun for me. I'm high maintenance. What can I say?
I had asked my good friend, Bill if there are any jellies these days. I got a definitive "no" answer.
Anyway, we got in and started swimming our usual route to Laura's dock. (about a mile there). 
I'm always kinda the lost soul in this bunch. There are always the really fast swimmers. Almost always the dudes trying to out swim one another. Then there is me.....I can always keep them in sight but never can stick with them. Then there is usually another group behind me. I'm always feeling like I'm out there with no one to watch for me....Boat traffic can be heavy on Labor Day too. Anyway, made it to Laura's dock. The dudes informed me they had all gotten stung by jellies. Ugh. Wasn't happy to hear that. Felt sluggish and my lower BACK was really bothering me. I think I'm having some female ovarian cyst issues that I will be getting checked out for next week. So thinking this is the cause of the back pain. However, I do tend to get lower back pain a lot swimming open water. I probably did sight too much today. My goggles keep fogging up and can't see where the heck I'm headed. I need to let go of some of my negative thoughts and excuses and just relax. Boats can be heard.

Anyway, so then we headed back to the beach. I expected to feel the jellyfish stings at any stroke. Felt a few of the jellies themselves but somehow managed (once again ) to escape the sting of the damn things. Looked at my Garmin and said 3.89 miles. I was thinking..cool. That was easy!! Well, OPPS. I had it in "Run" mode. Damn. Only really swam about 2 miles. I really had hoped to swim more miles. It's too far of a drive for an hour swim. But knowing that the jellies were high in abundance and waiting to wrap their nasty tentacles around my flesh, I decided to call it a day.

My goal is to continue to swim outside in open water this season as long as possible before winter hits. Sans wetsuit of course. Not sure if I should swim longer and include the wetsuit or not. Not a huge fan of the wetsuit but hey, allows me to stretch the season out longer (Gordon? What are your thoughts?)

Plan to do at least one long swim in the pool before this Labor Day weekend ends. I REALLY need to up my yardage.

I do miss the open water though. The jellies will be gone soon (where they go, I just don't know!) But can't wait to get in a long open water swim soon.....Life is always good when you can start your day with an open water swim.

(swam August 28, 2013)

Location:  Western YMCA, Wilmington, DE, SCY Outdoor Pool
Time: 12:30-1:20 pm (yes another express swim with limited time)

Another day of rushing around. My son with Autism had a Speech Eval that morning. So after his appointment, drove him across town to get him to school, had to go get my Iphone looked at. Was told internal water damage. Ha? What? Wonder if me throwing it in my swim bag had anything to do with it? Nah....
So anyway, I was rushed and stressed out. Hate swimming feeling this way. Guess it just life! Wonderful, cooler water temp. Love this pool.

600 Warm Up. Moderate pace free
300 Fast (around 4:00)
500 Pull
200 Strong (2:30 barely)
400 Build Free
100 Sprint (under 1:10 was the goal..didn't make it. 1:20)
400 Cool Down

=2500 yards

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Wilmington, DE, SCY Outdoor Pool
Time: 9:15-10:45
Fuel: Luna Bar prior, Gatorade during

Feeling tired after surviving getting kids back in school (the mornings are crazy!). I think swimming four consecutive days is my max before I need a day off. Didn't feel wonderful in the water today but I think one of the biggest challenges of swimming or any sport for that matter, is doing things you don't always feel like doing. Pushing yourself to keep moving. I think having a good person to train with is key too. I'm still looking for a compatible partner to train with. Someone who is consistent. Sometimes I go and try to find someone that looks fast (usually a young kid) and I swim next to them. Worked for about 20 minutes today, then the guy left. Drat.

Here's my workout for the day

200-4 x 50's free on :45
1000 - 1 x 500 easy, 5 x 100's alternating IM and free
900- 6 x 150's pull (left shoulder is starting to hurt..grr..working on rotating more and actually pulling using my arms less)
300- 4 x 75's drill/sprint/drill
100- 4 x 25's Sprint IM order
100- easy
300-kick with fins
100- easy
500- pull easy (felt really good)
500-easy swim with fins (concentrating on head position).

=4000 yards in 1:30

Monday, August 26, 2013

Location: Western YMCA, Wilmington, DE, SCY Pool
Weather: Started out super cloudy. Ended up gorgeous and sunny! High 70's
Time: 9:30-10:30 am
Fuel: Gatorade


Kids first day back to school today. My younger son, Nate, with Autism and his service dog, started 1st grade. My older son, Alex, started 6th grade today.
Didn't think of swimming today. My mind was set on relaxing and enjoying some quiet time. But I knew I'd regret it as the day went on, not swimming, so off I went.

600 Channel Pace swim (working on long strokes and bilateral breathing)
300 Fast (goal was to make 4:00. Didn't happen..4:20)
500 Pull (my happy time)
200 Strong (not sure I even made 2:30..)
400 Odds IM, Evens Kick with Fins
100 Sprint (1:10 goal...1:25 was reality...I need to work on sprints badly!!)
600 Channel Pace swim
200 Pull
100 Easy

=3000 yards


Sunday, August 25, 2013

Location:  Western YMCA, Wilmington, DE, SCM Outdoor Pool
Weather: Another GORGEOUS Day. Couldn't ask for more perfect conditions
Time:  12:30-1:45 pm
Fuel: Gatorade

In a much better mind set today. Didn't even expect to swim today with my hubby out of town but he surprised me coming home early!
I love coming to this pool in Delaware on the weekends in the summer. 10 Lane, SCM pool. I think I'm always able to grab my own lane.
My goal is to ramp up my yardage as the week goes on. With the kids back in 
school I will have more time! :)

600 Free (about half way through my ear bud got lodge in my ear..spent 10 minutes trying to get the darn thing out...)
1000 Kick with fins (no kickboard. Just kicking 6 beats and switching)
1000 - 10 x 100's pull on 1:45
1000- 1 x 500 Free Build, 1 x 100's alternating stroke and free
200 fun, relaxing, gazing at the sky, cool down

=3800 meters

 *Felt really good today. Mostly mentally. I tend to get into a negative mindset as my swim workouts continue. Something I'm realizing on I can work on and change. I'm thinking I'll want to swim this swim in Utah sooner than next September.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Swim location: Western YMCA in Wilmington, DE, 10 lane outdoor SCM pool
Weather: Gorgeous, clear, sunny skies. Air around 80 degrees, Water temp was a perfect 75 degrees.
Time:  11:15-12:00 pm
Fuel: (Lemon-Lime ) Gatorade

Started this first swim of my blog to Bear Lake a little crazy. Mother- in-law watching my son with Autism, while I rush across town, for a good swim. Half way there I realized I forgot my swim suit!! (I see now why my swim friends have smelly cars; they leave their suits stashed in their cars for this reason!) It was too far to drive back home to get my suit. Hunted around town, with the clock ticking. After many failed attempts, I drove a bit out of the way to a sporting goods store, ran in and grabbed the first two suits off the rack.
Bought them and rushed back to the pool. (luckily one fit the other is going back!)

Physically a little sore (mostly my calves) from going to the gym yesterday. I did run/walk on the treadmill for 30 minutes, followed by a 20 minute stationery bike ride and then on to some free weights and stretches.

Mentally I was not in a great frame of mind. Just a little frazzled I suppose from all the rushing around. Plus I knew with only 45 minutes til I had to leave, I wouldn't be finishing the practice my coach had given me.

1000 - 3 x (100 back/breast/free) + 100 IM easy (this went ok but I really hate backstroke...)
1000 kick with fins (this is a crap load of kicking. Biggest challenge is counting correctly)
1000 - 2 x 500's pull on 7:15 (Pulling is my fav....made them with a minute to spare).
500 - 5 x 100's free on 1:30 (** I did not do this set due to lack of time!**)
200 easy

= 3200 Meters