Following the Mesa meet, I had two weeks in between my next long course meet, so it was back to speed and power work. Travel is not an issue this time this weekend because the NCAC Quad Meet is in Chapel Hill at UNC. I am excited to race here with my fellow MOR teammates including my friend, Jen Stringer. Jen is a fellow Masters swimmer and also trains with me at MOR. Because the meet is so close to home, I’ll have some extra support in the audience. Eric, my parents, Cliff and Jane Bass, and my strength trainer, Wade Harris, will be there to cheer me on in the 50 free on Sunday.
This is another great opportunity for long course race experience although we have not yet ratcheted up our long course training. At this point in the season we only train long course one practice per week at NC State University. This past week, we focused on fast 50 sprints with 1-2 breaths in preparation for swimming with 0-1 breath in the actual race. My plan for Chapel Hill is to take one breath during the race at the two-thirds mark in order to have a strong finish.
During the past week we focused our strength training on gaining power in the legs. Wade has several wooden boxes he uses in the gym that everyone loves to hate. They are great for vertical jumps and lunges. As an added “benefit," he places a 45 lb.weight on the box and I push it across the artificial turf floor to really get the heart rate up! He wants me to finish fast pushing the box to mimic finishing a race with depleted oxygen supply.
With this intense training comes sore muscles. Sometimes, I stay sore for a couple of days. So, one other aspect of my training routine is to accelerate my recovery through stretching and massage. I am grateful to Suzie Bush, the owner of The Sport of Massage located here in Raleigh. I love their slogan, “Train Hard, Recover Smart.” Although my massages with Rob Hicks are not exactly “relaxing,” they are just what I need to unwind and release the muscle tightness.
Although we do not officially rest for this weekend’s meet, I will skip my normal 4:45 am practice with MOR and strength training on Friday. Instead, I will sleep in, eat a good breakfast and practice at noon with RAM.
This meet is only one session per day with the 100 free on Saturday and 50 free on Sunday, with a couple of relays with my MOR teammates
I look forward to updating everyone after this weekend!