Bloody nipples… .:shudder:. ouch dude!


Of all the rewards one could get for running a marathon, bleeding nipples is the last one I would want! Not to say that swimming has never put holes in me (you may remember the gnarly hole I rubbed in my neck during the Pacific Challenge 5k), but I’ve never had to deal with the indignity of looking like the guy above. Oddly enough someone decided to put together an album on flickr with a collection of runners in the worst possible state over here. If you’re on the fence as to whether you should take up swimming or distance running, check out the gallery… I have a feeling you’ll choose the pool!

I’m bummed out about today’s workout. I was a little apprehensive about successfully squeezing 4000 yards into an hour, but the plan was to try and get in as much of it as I could before going back to work. Unfortunately this lingering problem I’ve been having with my neck took me out of the game around the midway point. I was really hurting from the base of my neck into my trap/shoulder area. It got to a point where it felt like I was going to hurt something for real so I decided to listen to my body and get out. I didn’t want to, but it was probably the right move…

I think a whole mix of things out of the pool is giving me neck problems, but my head position when I swim is probably exacerbating it. Coach Nancy strapped a snorkel to my head the other day when I was visiting and I think that might be the answer. Me using a snorkel is pretty funny to watch because I suck at breathing like that, but I need to get used to keeping my head down.

Anyways, here’s what I swam before I had to give up:

1 x 400 free
2 x 300 free
3 x 200 free
4 x 100 free

200 slow drill while I wonder what the hell I did to myself…

2200 yards total

I’ve been icing myself down ever since I came back to the office, lame. Luckily I have a break this weekend with no meets. I think I’m going to go to my gym and use that pool at some point to figure out breathing with a snorkel… maybe even a decent flip turn that doesn’t result in me drowning!

So my master plan for October was to aquatically beat the hell out of myself all month so that I can recover in November and be fast by early December. Let’s consider step 1 complete! I hurt all over my body today after my swim down in Santa Maria. We normally squeeze 2500-3000 yards into our workouts, but today we did 3500. Add on the 60 minutes I spent on the elliptical machine at the gym late last night and I’m ready for bed somewhere around 7pm today! I don’t think the beatings are going to get any less severe at practice, but at least my schedule is slowing down. Only 2 meets in November and 1 in December.

Anyways, enough whining, here’s the workout:

200 free
400 free
600 free
400 free IM
200 free IM

Repeat x 4
25 fly @ :30
100 back @ 1:45
50 breast @ 1:00
150 free @ 2:15

400 pull

3500 yards total

All that stuff at the beginning had actual targeted times, but I don’t remember any of them. Basically they were all set up to give you a little bit of rest but not much.

This post is a little overdue… I’m normally pretty quick to figure out what my time goals are for the season, but I have a hard time with meters. I even lived in Europe and I still can’t comprehend the metric system sometimes, it’s kind of sad. Anyways, now that I have 3 SCM meets under my belt for this season I have a grip on what I’m capable of right now and what kind of numbers I can shoot for.

50 free – 27.5

Last year I spent most of the season at some variant of 30 seconds and swam a 29.24 at regionals in Long Beach. This year I’m in the mid 28′s. I want to break 28 in meters and get to a point where I am seeing some 24′s next year in SCY season.

100 free – 1:02

I only swam the 100 free in SCM once last year. I went 1:08, not that great. I didn’t really do anything that great in SCY either (best was 58ish). During LCM season I started to get much better with my 100 free. I went 1:05 a couple times at LCM Regionals back in August. So far this season I’ve swam a 1:04 SCM with 2 really bad turns. I think I can get down to around 1:02 if I have a good race with solid turns. Eventually I want to crack 1:00 in SCM… that might take a little while.

50 fly – 28.5

Last year I swam 31′s and 32′s in this event. This season saw me go 29.7 already. I want my fly to catch up with my 50m free in the mid 28′s.

100 fly – 1:04

Ahh the 100 fly, my big event of choice. I first swam a 1:13 at UCLA last October, I got it down to 1:09 at Long Beach in December. Last weekend I swam a 1:06… we’re making some progress here :) I want to swim a 1:04 before the year is out. That converts to like a high :57 or low :58 in SCY. When I grow up I want to break 1:00 in meters but I’m pretty sure that’s not happening this year!

200 fly – Stay within the top 10 on the list below!

I’d appreciate it if the rest of you that are 25-29 go ahead and not beat my time this year that would be swell :) This is my big shot at a top ten time!

I first showed you guys pictures of the USMS Headquarters way back in May. Since then there’s been a lot of work done to the inside of the building to get it ready to house USMS’ professional staff. If you were ever curious what the new USMS HQ looked like on the inside, here’s a video starring the disembodied hand of executive director Rob Butcher…

Rob also uploaded some video showing all the work a team of volunteers did to clean up the outside of the building…

Today was a drop dead gorgeous day at the beach. It was sunny and hot with dolphins out patrolling the water. There were only 3 of us that came out to swim today, everybody else missed out! We decided to just swim the entire length of the buoy line today because there were a bunch of pelicans diving out at the end of the pier.

Heidi came along today and took a whole bunch of pictures so I’ll let those tell the story…

getting myself put together

me and Niel making our way out to the water

contemplating our course

en route to the first buoy

almost there

swimming the first half of the buoy line

swimming the other half on the other side of the pier

on our way to the furthest buoy

coming back under the pier

back to the beach!


If you want more pictures I have a whole bunch more on Facebook here!

**UPDATE: Meet results are now posted and available here

200 freestyle relay action!

I had an excellent day down at UCLA today! There were a ton of swimmers (lots of new faces in the mix!) at the pool today and we were breaking in a brand new facility. We swam in the newly opened Spieker Aquatics Center which is waaaaaay nicer than the pool we had been using for meets at UCLA. The pool is good looking and fast. I’m stoked we have this facility available to us! The meet moved along pretty nicely. It had a slow start which is understandable given the pool’s newness, but once we got started everything went off without any problems.

My first event of the day was the 100m fly. Originally I was shooting for like a 1:07 or 1:08 but Joel from the17thman started talking some crap on Twitter about beating me in one of his fancy Splish Suits, so my goal promptly switched to beating Joel :)

…and it’s on!

We ended up in the same heat but different ends of the pool. In my race I had a pretty strong start and I went out in about a :30. I was pretty sure that this wouldn’t be a very painful race since I did a 200m fly last week, but um… I was wrong. I was really feeling it on the last 25. I finished in a 1:06 which I was pretty happy with (it’s :59ish in yards), more importantly I beat Joel! He had some excellent excuses for not going faster, like having just swam the 50m back and the 800m free, but we’ll go ahead and ignore those for right now… let’s just focus on the part where I won :) The other thing that I’m stoked about is my progress across the last year in this event. I swam my first masters 100m fly at the UCLA meet last year in a 1:13, I’m down 7 seconds from last October!

Next up was the 50m free. I was seeded next to Coach Chad from Rosebowl, I seem to end up next to him a lot. I had my best start of the day in this race and I felt pretty good through the whole thing. I hit my turn (unlike my monster botched turn at Mountain View) and really turned up my kick on that last 25. Chad out touched me, but I grabbed a best time and got myself into the 28′s. I swam 28.4-ish. If I can dip into the 27′s this year I would be pretty excited about that.

My main objective in the 50m fly today was redemption. My 50m fly at the Pacific Masters SCM Championships last week sucked (I swam a 31.5 which is like 1.5 seconds slower than my best LCM time). I was very intent on breaking 30 today. Everything went as well as I could hope for. No major errors. I swam a 29.7 which was my 3rd SCM best time of the day!

In the 100m IM things kinda stopped going so super hot. I didn’t really mess anything up I was just tired. Well in looking at the video it’s fair to say that my backstroke looked awful overall… anyways… I swam a 1:15 which is about 3 seconds slower than what I did at Mountain View earlier this month. Oh well. We’ll call that one a character builder.

I forgot my camera again, but I’ve recently procured an iPhone 3Gs which served as a pretty awesome replacement. I took some decent pictures and a ton of video. I mashed 3 of my races together below. A big thank you to my friend Helene from Porter Valley Masters for being my filmographer this afternoon! As usual I am the large bald guy in the black full body Tracer Light…

It felt really good to be back in action at an SPMA meet. It seems like I’ve been swimming everywhere except SoCal since like September! Next up is Santa Clarita in about 2 weeks, I’ll see you guys there!

the new pool has a sweet diving set up… joint masters swimming/diving meet anybody?

that’s Joel from the17thman in lane 8 swimming the 800m

Since I needed to be down in the general LA area tonight anyways, I left work a little early today so that I could get down to Thousand Oaks early enough to swim the 7pm workout with the Conejo Valley Masters. Tonight we were in the big pool at CLU which is awesome because I really dig that pool. Coach Nancy had me and Peter do a more mellow meet warm up workout. After about 1200 yards of swimming kicking and drilling we switched to short sprints. I got to practice my starts and get in a few sprint 25s.

While I was there she coerced me to try out a snorkel which I’ve never done. I damn near drowned! She had me try again with a nose clip and that sort of solved it. Swimming with a snorkel is going to take some work for me to get figured out. It really fixes my head position though so it wil be worth the trouble.

Tomorrow I’m going to swim at the new pool UCLA just opened in the Bruins Masters SCM Meet. If you want in on the action you can still deck enter tomorrow morning at the pool! You can download the meet info here.

Today’s workout was really good, but I just didn’t have the requisite speed or endurance for the back half of it! We started out with a short set of 75′s that was actually really challenging/interesting. Basically you kick as hard as you can for a 25, swim as hard as you can for a 25, and then cruise the last 25. It really confuses your body which probably means that it was good for me. After that we did a big string of 50′s and finished with 13 100′s. This is where I started having trouble. The first half was fine, the interval wasn’t an issue. Once we got to the 3rd 100 on 1:20 I started to fall behind. I shouldn’t have but I did. I just couldn’t muster up the speed to keep up. I skipped a 50 in there to get back on track with the rest of the faster group. I still wasn’t exactly making the intervals but I was at least back on track enough. I think I’m just really tired from all the stuff I’ve been doing recently. September and October have been a total blur and Saturday will be my 3rd meet this month! I’m really looking forward to the following weekend where I have absolutely nowhere to be!

Here’s today’s workout:

200 free

6 x 75 (25 kick fast, 25 swim fast, 25 cruise)

12 x 50 @ :45 pull
12 x 50 @ :40 swim

13 x 100
1-4 @ 1:25
5 @ 1:30
6-8 @ 1:20
9 @ 1:30
10-11 @ 1:15
12 @ 1:30
13 @ 1:10

3050 yards (I swam 3000)

Tomorrow I’m going to leave work a little early so I can make it to Thousand Oaks for the 7pm workout with Conejo Valley Multisport Masters in the big pool at CLU. So barring any work emergencies or traffic disasters on the 101 I should be there.

I got an email today from the Pacific Masters Championships meet director about the relays they are intending to submit for FINA WR’s from the meet. If you were on a relay check the list! They need some info from you to verify your age. I pasted the e-mail below so you can get the full story…


If you placed first in a 400 or 800 meters relay and ALL of your swimmers were 25 years and over this message is for you! If you HAVE NOT submitted proof of age to USMS for records submissions, you need to do so IMMEDIATLY. You should be receiving an email from Nancy Ridout or Walt Reid requesting a copy of your birth certificate or passport as proof of age. If you have ever held a national record, your proof of age should be on file.

FINA is now recording World Records in the 400 and 800 meter relay events and winning teams from our meet with all swimmers 25 and over will be submitted, ONLY if proof of age for ALL swimmers is on file. Record submission deadline is 11-1-09, and proof of age must be recorded in time to get the records to FINA by that date.

Fax a copy of your birth certificate or passport to Nancy at 415-898-3467 OR scan and email to

The following relay teams will be submitted for establishing World Records:

Women 160-199 800 SC Meter Freestyle Relay

Team Seed Finals

1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 9:28.00 9:36.44P
1) Santos, Debbie M W41 2) Henry, B J W45
3) Ward, Lisa A W45 4) Heim-Bowen, Suzanne M W51

Women 200-239 800 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Bay Masters-38 ‘A’ 12:35.68 12:15.32
1) Klencke, Barbara J W52 2) Lewis, Laurie W48
3) Morris, Suzanne M W54 4) Free, Sue W47

Men 200-239 800 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Santa Rosa Masters-38 ‘A’ 8:31.50 8:33.40N
1) Morales, John R M51 2) Dunn, Joe M51
3) Canales, Francisco M57 4) Schenstrom, Warren M52

Mixed 120-159 800 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
3 Manatee Aquatic Masters Inc-38 ‘A’ 9:59.00 9:40.57
1) Rublein, Susanne P W39 2) Pankey, Christopher S M55
3) Chinn, Sarah M W25 4) Selinger, Ili R M36

Mixed 160-199 800 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 8:40.00 8:26.62N
1) Sorensen, Jack M32 2) Zamanian, Alison H W39
3) Curran, Margee M W48 4) Santos, Roque J M41

Mixed 200-239 800 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Manatee Aquatic Masters Inc-38 ‘A’ 10:10.00 10:05.60
1) Perry, Rebecca W45 2) Cox, Juliet E W41
3) Upshaw, Bob B M60 4) Clemmons, Jim M59

Mixed 240-279 800 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 11:38.52 11:48.98
1) Tukua, Karen M W59 2) Piazza, Michael S M63
3) Scott, Stephanie I W62 4) Ugarkovich, David M M62

Women 120-159 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 4:30.00 4:36.40
1) Duggan, Karen L W39 2) Mendoza-Martens, Nicole J W33
3) Haack, Angela R W35 4) Tukua, Rebecca R W27

Women 160-199 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 4:20.00 4:22.75P
1) Santos, Debbie M W41 2) Ward, Lisa A W45
3) Henry, B J W45 4) Valentine, Sara W45

Women 200-239 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Bay Masters-38 ‘A’ 4:50.17 5:30.18
1) Watlington, B Gale W47 2) Morris, Suzanne M W54
3) Klencke, Barbara J W52 4) Lewis, Laurie W48

Women 240-279 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Tamalpais Aquatic Masters-38 ‘A’ 5:05.00 4:56.63N
1) Val, Laura B W58 2) Eisenman, Judy A W55
3) Ridout, Nancy J W67 4) Shoenberger, Linda R W62

Women 280-319 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 6:40.00 6:20.10P
1) Murphy, Karen L W49 2) Monroe, Donna W76
3) Alexander, Joan E W77 4) Hirsch, Ann M W78

Women 320-359 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 12:00.00 9:12.66
1) Mc Millan, Betty T W80 2) Haworth, Joyce M W72
3) Howell, Jae W87 4) Owens, Barbara R W80

Men 100-119 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Bay Masters-38 ‘A’ 4:21.11 4:34.16
1) Pun, Peter W M27 2) Tornatore-Pili, John A M26
3) Saab, Paul M31 4) Ellis, Byron C M32

Men 120-159 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Bay Masters-38 ‘A’ 3:49.99 3:40.32
1) Jones, Clayton P M30 2) Ketterling, Casey B M32
3) Connolly, Darrin T M38 4) Matarangas, John T M39

Men 160-199 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 3:50.00 4:04.54
1) Abrams, Scott C M42 2) Allen, Chuck F M45
3) Nootbaar, Tom T M46 4) Mikuni, Aaron J M29

Men 200-239 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 4:01.00 4:05.18
1) Druz, Loren M53 2) Dugan, Tom W M51
3) Volpp, Bryan D M52 4) Patterson, Gary L M50

Men 240-279 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 4:32.00 5:10.55
1) Smyers, Jesse B M63 2) Burr, Ken M M65
3) Boscovich, Harold O M67 4) Ugarkovich, David M M62

Men 280-319 400 SC Meter Freestyle Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Walnut Creek Masters-38 ‘A’ 5:45.00 6:44.11
1) Mayo, Robert W M76 2) Perilman, Jim E M70
3) Daniel, Jack C M76 4) Nieman, Frank B M77

Mixed 160-199 400 SC Meter Medley Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Manatee Aquatic Masters Inc-38 ‘A’ 5:40.00 5:07.62
1) Heath, Robert H M52 2) Rublein, Susanne P W39
3) Hult, Britta J W29 4) Clemmons, Jim M59

Mixed 200-239 400 SC Meter Medley Relay
Team Seed Finals
1 Rolling Hills Mud Sharks-38 ‘A’ 5:25.00 5:27.75
1) Powell, Susie W W57 2) Ericsson, Ken M49
3) Adkison, Bill M54 4) Viscardi, Josie A W45

Kara Gray – Meet Director