It’s true, this isn’t a big swim. It’s actually a smaller than average swim. So why mention it? This is the last swim set that I felt like I mentally prepared for as part of my IM training for 2010. And so like the last focused run and last focused ride I’ll mark its passing on the blog here. There’s still some bits and pieces left to do, but they’re all just going to happen, I hardly have to think about them. After my rather un-nerving performance in that 4000yd TT two weeks ago we added another swim TT to the schedule as I led into the race, just as a progress check to confirm suspicions that a good chunck of the reason I swam slow was that I was super tired.
31:11 for 2000yds. This is pace for a 65:51 IM swim but I was only going half the distance. If you presume you fade 4% with distance doubling (pseudo-scientific if you presume I paced this perfectly and would pace the IM perfectly) I’d net myself a 67:51 which I’d say is likely a pretty serious overestimation. This is a significant improvement over two weeks ago where I was indeed quite clearly swimming tired and then only snuck under 69 minute IM pace. With a bit of draft, a wetsuit and another 10 days of tapering this is pretty much where I wanted to be swimming wise when I laid things out a year ago for how I wanted my skillset to develop over the course of the year. It’s not fantastic, but I never said I needed to be fantastic. I made a huge leap in my swimming ability since I returned to the pool after cyclocross wrapped up last fall.
Most importantly I have been feeling like I can crank out some serious effort on the pool in the last week or so. Once I started heading into the taper I’ve had some really satisfying swim sets. I swam a 15x100m set last Thursday, all of them felt fast and efficient and I brought the last one in at 91 seconds. Wow! I swam a set of 5x200yds on Tuesday and kept them all under 180 seconds, finishing #5 on 2:55, my open PR being a 2:44 and I think I probably drafted to get that. (Aside: I should probably get out of the habit of counting PRs where I draft the whole way) It’s really good to feel like you’re swimming strong, I haven’t actually felt this great in the pool since mid-April. I’m looking forward to a satisfying swim.