Swim clinics and dirty dogs

Well, it’s winter in Cleveland. 

SNOWPOCALYPSE 2011 or whatever they’re calling it makes the already hard February training even harder.  It’s below freezing, it’s dark, you gotta dig your car out of the driveway to go anywhere…. but I guess this is all part of the challenge, right?

So what do I do to help motivate me right now?  Besides just plain being scared of race day, I sign up for training events!

I talked about the BIG SUNDAYS in the last post – that helps me knock two big workouts out at once with a bunch of friends.  Of course, these don’t happen every Sunday but the work still has to be done!

Last Sunday I went to a Swim Challenge, hosted by the Cleveland Triathlon Club.  You could sign up for 25, 50, 75 or ONE HUNDRED 100s.  That’s right, a 10k of swimming on a Sunday.  Fourteen people swam 10,000 yards, but not me.  I chose to swim 25, and then attend a swim clinic.  The clinic was hosted by Liquid Lifestyles, who happens to be a returning Sponsor for the 2011 SSSMST group.

The clinic was 90 minutes long, and focused on technique.  This is probably not a big surprise, since swimming is so technique-based.  Leah Nyikes, the founder of Liquid Lifestyles, led the clinic off by talking about four main points: balance, rotation, length, and timing.  We went through a sequence of drills for each of the four points to really illustrate exactly how each is used for a good swim stroke.  I have to admit, that although I’ve been doing a lot of drills already, many of these were new to me.  Leah also emphasized that the stroke should be wider, and not cross over the center of your body.  Again, this is opposite of how I’ve been swimming.   Although I left with my head spinning from this “new” way of swimming, I am happy to have so much additional knowledge to take with me as I work on improving my swimming skills.

(Liquid Lifestyles has a variety of offerings for all levels of swimming.  Leah informed us that instruction can be given from very early in the morning until late at night, including weekends!.  Also, she is hosting some masters swimming at the Lakewood YMCA and Rocky River Recreation Center to work on these techniques.)

This weekend I’ll be back on for a BIG SUNDAY.  And to get my butt out for a run in this weather, tomorrow I’ll be running the Dirty Dog 10k!  See recaps from previous years here and here.  I can’t wait to report on this race.  Or if I’m really honest, I’m most looking forward to the post-race breakfast.

Have a great weekend!

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