Saturday 31 December 2011

New Year's Eve (more of a whimper than a bang.)

Here's how I did it!
With the euphoria of completing my Binge Challenge on Christmas day I haven't quite atrophied or suffered from chlorine withdrawal.

In fact Teenage Triathlete and I turned up for the Thursday Session at Gateshead Leisure Centre (along with quiet Clare) only to discover that it wasn't on. (for some reason that session always catches me out).

But the Saturday morning session was, and we were joined by Sumo and Judo who made the trek from Cumbria, to swim, shop and ultimately join in the New Year festivities at the Binge household in deepest darkest Ebchester.

Now being in such elevated company as Judo, I was trying desperately hard to stay on her feet (and failing miserably) but I did manage the set of 100's off 1.35 (thanks for the tow Judy.) As you can imagine there was a fair bit more chat and a bit less swimming during the session which meant we didn't quite cover 3k, which I might have managed, had I not been half way to the pool when I realised I'd left my kit behind.

400 warm up mixed strokes
8 x 100 @ 1.35
16 x 50 @ 65 medley order
8 x 50's kick(with fins) @ 1.20
12 x 25's medley order @ 45s
100 swim down
2800 metres
502,842 metres.

So 2011 ended with a (fairly) gentle paddle, but having been well and truly bitten by this blogging and swimming lark I'm planning to continue (not sure whether that's good or bad news for everyone.) I also thought I'd give the blog a new look for the new year so watch this space, have a great evening and all the best for next year.


Sunday 25 December 2011

Merry Christmas...Chore is Over

Christmas Eve a somewhat calm and tranquil
(and totally out of character)
Binge household
Well by 10.06 this morning it was all over, 40 minutes in a rather cool Endless pool and that was it. I was taking advantage of Bob going out for a run and teenage triathlete visiting her cousins with her grandparents.

You know how sad I am, well I thought I'd celebrate my half a millionth metre in a full body suit which made it challenging to firstly get into it and secondly to hang on to the pullbuoy in the last set. 

An uninspiring session but hey it got the job done!

7 x 200 @ 3.30
4 x 100 @ 2 mins pull
50 sprint to finish
1850 metres

Thanks for sticking with me and have a great day.......

Saturday 24 December 2011

Christmas Eve Session and 99.6% there (according to the spreadsheet)

The Saturday session was sparsely attended today as the majority of  Gateshead swimmers found more useful ways to spend their Christmas Eve morning.

Fairy Snow Baby turned up with one of the baby fairy snow babies, who gamely worked her way through his session. (although in the 10 minutes it took the two of us to finish off the kick set she managed to swim 4 x 100's and 6 x 50's (allegedly) at about Michael Phelps pace).

We bashed through this set which put me within a session of my half a million metres... on that thought have a lovely Christmas and here's to 2012 challenges.......

600 warm up change stroke every 25
6 x 300's @ 5.15 2 pull with paddles, 2 pull, 2 swim *
12 x 50's medley changeover @ 70 seconds
6 x 100 kick with fins @ 2.20
450 swim down
4100 metres total

* miscounted here and swam 50 too much

Thursday 22 December 2011

Christmas Dip & Chicken Dippers

Ooh as feared the inevitable Christmas slump is upon me, as I descend into madness trying to do the zillion things in time for the holiday. After a particularly gruelling day I decided I would collapse in front of the telly with a drink.

Collecting the glass from the kitchen I held it under the fridge ice dispenser there was a gurgle and a growl and my kitchen appliance dispensed into my glass 2 whole chicken nuggets and a macerated mulch of breadcrumbs and bits of nugget.

Does your freezer end up so full that you stuff things in the ice making compartment?  Neither teenage triathlete nor Bob would fess up to this although they both thought it was hilarious. (Mental note clean out the freezer!)

Amidst the Christmas chaos I found time to slip away on Thursday afternoon to take a further 1800 metres off my total.The pool was pretty quiet which came as a pleasant surprise as it is school holidays. Only 5908 metres to go.

800 warm up
8 x 100 @ 1.45
200 swim down

Saturday 17 December 2011

Jaws 2 (the return of Bart the Shark)

Oh no not that Shark fella again
With the throes of Christmas well and truly upon us I found myself reduced to a taxi driver for Teenage Triathlete as her social whirl spun completely out of control. Consequently I'm making very little progress on counting down those metres.

A rather snowy and somewhat hairy drive to Hexham for the triathlete's Christmas party and a sleep over gave me a quiet night in on my own and the opportunity to swim this morning.

The session was pretty busy with a number of people who don't normally swim on a Saturday including the return of Bart the Shark who was hoping to get his life back on track in January and thought he'd steal a march by coming in today.

The session was varied and fairly relaxed, I was really pleased with the progressive 200's given that in January I was struggling to swim sub 3.15's. Awesome Emma was complaining that there was too much rest on the 25's! I did explain that as I was now under 10k I thought the pressure was off and we could take it easy, (so we promptly dropped the turn around time to 50's.)

Beckleberry dad was his usual harbinger of doom by commenting that there was still time for me to slip on the snow and ice and break my leg, cheerful huh. Well I'm now down to 7,708m (although I'm not really sure where the extra 8 metres comes from).

Oh and I've cleverly left my lap top in Court 13 at Newcastle County Court so I'm struggling to post this blog!

13 x 50's  5@ 60s  8 @ 55s
25 m to move to the other end so I can see the clock
5 x 200 @ 3.40 progressive* no 1 easy, no 2 hard 50 easy 150, no 3 hard 100 easy 100 etc
100 swim down
8 x 100 @ 2 mins 25 swim, 25 kick, 25 drill 25 swim
8 x 25 @ 50s hard 1st 12.5m streamline, dolphin sprint kick
4 x 50 @ 70  breast
4 x 50 @ 70 free
4 x 50 @ 70 breast
4 x 50 @ 70 IM order
25 m to get to the other end to get out

* chuffed with a 3.05, 3.00, 2.55, 2.50, and 2.45

Sunday 11 December 2011

Christmas shopping and gatecrashing a session

Now I don't know about you but I'm a bit of a last minute kind of person, so it's two weeks to Christmas and I haven't even started my Christmas shopping yet. So there's the dilemma I really need to get started on the acquisitive part of Christmas; do I Shop or Binge, Shop or Binge.

In an attempt to have my cake and eat it, I was toying with the idea of driving into Newcastle shopping for a couple of hours, driving back to Consett for the session and then returning to Newcastle for the last couple of hours......mmh not very environmentally friendly.

So while I was debating whether it was really worth the 30 mile round trip just for a swim, it struck me that there was a Newcastle Masters session in the City Pool. Could I just drop in and plead with Geoff Peart the Masters coach to let me in?

I guess with it being Christmas, and also the South Yorkshire Masters Meet I arrived (a little late having struggled to park the Bingemobile and eventually abandoned it behind a Lloyds Bank Office building where I was certain to be clamped) at a fairly quiet session (about 10 swimmers) and was welcomed in. About half way through the workout the penny obviously dropped with my coach for the day as he enquired whether or not this was a Binge session?

Now I just love the little pool at the City Baths, I love the greenhouse like glass roof and the ornate plaster work but most of all I love the fact that it's only 25 yards long and it feels really fast to swim in. Of course when I finished the set I could truly use the term yardage, it sounds so much better than meterage, thanks very much Geoff. Only 11,308 metres to go........

2 x 200 @ 3.00
2 x 150 @ 2.30  50 free, 50 back, 50 free
2 x 4 x 25 IM @ 2 mins
3 x 200 @ 3.00
100 50 free, 50 breast
4 x 25 @ 45s breast 1st 15 yards flat out
200 steady
4 x 25 @ 45s breast steady up, flat out from a dive back
200 steady
4 x 25 @ 45s free 1st 15 yards flat out
200 steady
4 x 25 @ 45s free steady up, flat out from a dive back
200 steady
4 x 50's @ 60  max effort on 1st 3 strokes (break out)
50 swim down
3000 yds
2,700 metres (actually 2743 metres to be precise)

Saturday 10 December 2011

Double Dip Saturday

So for the third Saturday in a row the Binge made a double swim session, clearing the Ryton Tri Session just in time to dash home change and head out to the hostelries of Durham City, (the Court Inn to be precise) for Durham Tri Club's Annual Christmas Bash and Awards evening.

Now as the name may suggest this particular establishment is a little close to the Crown Court, the Prison and Durham nick for my liking and the cartoons painted on the wall of desolate  looking criminals behind bars was a bit close for comfort in respect of the day job, but the food was good and the company and the crack was great.

And congratulations to Ellen Ann and Donna who ran the raffle with brutal efficiency ....... Thanks for the hospitality guys we had a great night...

Fortunately the alcohol wasn't sufficient enough to eradicate the session from my memory.

450 metres warm up
5 x 50's 20m fist 30m swim
400 free hard every 4th length
8 x 100 @ 1.45 finger trail 1st 25 swim last 75
400 free hard every 4th length
8 x 100 free 25m kick 75 m pull with paddles
400 free hard every 4th length
428m swim down

I did actually swim out to the 14 metre mark and then swam back to tidy up my cumulative total (ie. get rid of the odd 28 metres)

Temperature reality check!

No Matt the Cash this morning, he's obviously saving himself for his day out at the South Yorkshire Masters Meet in Sheffield tomorrow. This left me to come up with the uninspiring work out at the bottom of this post.

I know I've been whinging on about how cold it's been this week, but I pulled this image off Nuala (Mad)-Muir-Cochrane's Facebook page after her little sprint set in some lido pool in deepest darkest north London this morning, (I'm guessing Parliament Hills) makes me look a real wuss.

So with a mere (God doesn't that sound good) 17,978 metres to go in the 2011 Binge challenge, the question is do I go for a double dip today? I'm wavering and becoming a bit complacent here.....

I do like to leave on a cliff hanger!!!!!!

8 x 75's warm up @ 10s RI 25 swim, 25 drill 25 swim
25m to swim to deep end to see the clock
800 pull with paddles @ 60s RI
600 pull with paddles @ 40s RI
400 pull with paddles @ 30s RI
200 pull with paddles
10 x 50's @ 65 working on streamlining at start and the turns
6 x 4 x 25 IM @ 1.55
325 metres swim down
4100 metres

Friday 9 December 2011

Happy Birthday Donny

I'm going to dedicate my swim this afternoon to Mr Donny Osmond who celebrates his 54th Birthday today, not that there's much left of today to celebrate.

Quite a few people obviously had the same idea as the pool was pretty busy and there was a far bit of ducking and diving whilst navigating through the session.

I gave a young guy in a pair of hideous Bermuda shorts with an awful screw kick a bit of a scare; when he stopped to turn round at one end and I followed him into the wall swimming back crawl and only just stopped myself tumbling and planting my feet in an unmentionable place. It was of course his fault as he exhibited a rubbish sense of direction choosing to swim diagonally across the pool!

A bit more garbage yardage this afternoon but I thought the 200's were encouraging.

1000 warm up 66 drill, 66 swim
7 x 200 @ 3.15 pull with paddles (all under 2.55)
6 x 33 breaststroke kick @ 50 s
3 x 4 x 33 IM @ 3mins forwards, reverse, forwards.
300 swim down
3300 metres total

Monday 5 December 2011

Brrr the first proper snow....

There was a smattering of snow on the ground as I drove past the tree line and up into Consett this morning, still it's a lot less than last year's big freeze. But it's still "a bit parky" as we say up here in the north east.

A case I was involved in very conveniently settled at the very unaptly named "Civil and Family Justice Centre" in Durham (I've rabbited on here about this building) so I sped back to work to snatch a quick dip in what was left of my lunch hour.

It was definitely a Tesco session but.... (every little helps)

1000 warm up
6 x 33's breast kick @ 50s
6 x 33's free breathing every 8 @ 45s
200 swim down
1600m total

Sunday 4 December 2011

Sparkie fizzles out

Grief it's cold, not to mention we had the first snow of the winter today. Well actually it was technically closer to sleet and although it didn't lie on the ground as I drove up to Consett I could see the white tops of the moors in the distance. Brrrrr

The original Evil Mutant Swim Coach had given way to Evil Mutant Swim Coach II (otherwise known as Framie) and actually the session was ever so slightly gentler than the recent Sunday's thrash and dash. I'm not sure if I'm in any fit shape

Sparkie Walton was well intentioned and dived in to start the set, he lasted 8 lengths before succombing to his man flu and abandoning the session. I'm not totally unsympathetic as I recognise that there's nothing worse than trying to swim when you can't breathe... get well soon Graham.

400 warm up change stroke every 3rd length
4 x 133's @ 2.30 max effort length 1, 6, 11, 16
3 x 100's @ 2.00 max effort length 1, 5, 9
2 x 66's @ 90s max effort length 1, 4
33 max effort
133 swim down
33 hard @ 60s
2 x 66's @ 90s hard effort lengths 2,3
3 x 100's @ 2.00 hard effort lengths, 2,3,4,6,7,& 8
3 x 133's @ 2.30 hard effort lengths 2,3,4,5,7,8,9,10,12 *
100 swim down
2500 metres total

Evil Mutant Swim Coach II got a bit carried away and missed one out! (thankful for small mercies)

Saturday 3 December 2011

Kicking Saturday

For the second Saturday in a row I thought I'd try two swim sessions so I ducked into the Ryton Tri session this afternoon and was rewarded with a further 4100 metres leaving me with less than 30,000 metres to cover in the next 4 weeks. Now I reckon that's eminently doable!

It was pretty painful trying to swim the second session and I paid for it in the second set of fast 100's which were anything other than fast.

The session was fortunately cut short by a demand from teenage triathlete that I take her to the Metro Centre because she desperately needed new mascara for going out this evening! "I really really.... really need this mum!" Why do I give in? (to escape the rest of this session?)

On looking back over today I reckon I've swum more kick today than I've done in the whole year and god I really really ....REALLY hate kick.

800 swim with fins every 4th length kick
12 x 25 with fins fly kick on back on 10s RI
4 x 100 sprint @ 2.20  84,s last one 82
800 pull with paddles
4 x 100 @ 10 s with fins shark fin drill
4 x 100 sprint @ 2.20 completely knackered by now
600 pull with paddles
6 x 50's finger trail
100 swim down
4,100 metres total

Birthday Non Binge!

I was extremely grown up at the chambers party yesterday evening and didn't touch an alcoholic drink! On my birthday as well, I'm beginning to think I'm taking this binging malarky way too seriously.

No kids in the session this morning and we were quite thin on the ground so we all had a lane each. The FSB turned up for the first time in a fortnight having fought off a recent chest infection. I tried valiantly to keep up with him on the 100's (it lasted for about 12 metres)

Matt the Cash suggested the 100's which were quite hard work and not particularly rewarding in terms of time.

800 warm up change stroke every 25
25 (to change ends)
10 x 100 @ 2 mins holding 85's or less
8 x 50's @ 65 drill
4 x 200s @ 3.30 progressive 3.10, 3.05, 3.02, 2.53
8 x 50's @ 60 up breast down free
5 x 100's kick @ 2.20
275 swim down
4200 metres

Thursday 1 December 2011

December already?

Well it's December and shock horror I'm sticking to my quest and still swimming, a lunch time session at Consett took my under the 40,000 metre mark on Thursday.

I think I'm beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel and I'm becoming increasingly confident that I can actually make the half a million metres mark.

I am aware however that a nasty cold or one of life's other banana skins which all too frequently appear in front of me could of course derail my efforts.

9 x 4 x 133's odd ones 33, free drill, 33 back, 33 free drill 33 breast
                     even ones all free
3 x 400 free pull with paddles (what else) @ 6.30 swimming 5.55, 5.50 and 5.55
200 breast kick
6 x 66's up drill down swim @ 80s
3000 metres