Monday, March 25, 2013

Day 46 - How Not to Breath Underwater.

March 24, 2013          243.6 lbs

Today I was to swim 3300 yards and run for one hour and twenty minutes. I did the complete swim workout but had to work so time was limited.

The swim workout was:

500 yd Warm Up
3 X 300 yd with a one minute rest.
4 X 200 yd with 40 seconds rest.
5 X 100 yd with 20 seconds rest.
6 X 100 yd with 10 seconds rest.

My swim is never exactly comfortable but I notice that each time I do a workout, I feel little improvements all around. My shoulder is still bugging me but less. I have suspected for a few years that I may have a minor Rotator cuff tear. Without insurance, it's something I just have to deal with.
One thing that I feel is getting better the fastest, is my breathing. And the number one thing that improved it for me? My head position. Now that may sound obvious, but let me explain. In proper freestyle swim position, your body remains parallel to the water surface. Your head is in line with your body, face looking down. 
My problem was I was looking forward. Just slightly, but enough that I had to turn my head more which meant forcing my breath out sharply and rushing the inhale. How I realized this mistake was round about as usual for me. I had noticed that as I twisted my body with the stroke and came up for air, if I turned my face more towards the rear than just up to the side, I didn't inhale as much water. That was during my last swim. I was watching a swimming video yesterday when I realized I'm not looking straight down. So as soon as I started warming up today, I really focused on my head position and the mechanics of the freestyle stroke. If my coach Chris Hauth lived closer, I know he could correct my form. For the time being, I'm learning to make corrections from video examples. Maybe I can ask someone to film me swimming one day and I'll send the video to Chris for analysis.
Another thing that I've found helps is beginning to release my breath earlier, so when I rotate my body for the stroke and come up for air, I can inhale without the stress of trying to exhale first. And this last one is kind of weird but I thought helpful. Instead of holding my breath so my cheeks are full, I found that relaxing my face and gently releasing my breath some in the middle of the stroke also helped. These little things all add up to being more comfortable in the water.

Time 1:18:34     Miles 1.78       Calories  966

This is a true fish eye photo!

 I found a video of my coach showing proper arm technique in the pull portion of the freestyle! That answers a couple questions. No wonder the front of my shoulders are sore.

Until tomorrow my friends.

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