Friday, July 13, 2012

Strong Program

During one of my warm up sessions last week I took some tips from one of the Masters swimming coaches. He was helping me with my start from one of those new-fangled, rhomboid starting blocks with the finned tail on the back. We were working on my track-start. I felt like a rock star.  Back when I was swimming summer league and high school, we started off blocks.  Just square blocks. 

Anyway, that volunteer coach gave me some good pointers. And he also seemed genuinely impressed that I signed up to do the 400 IM and 400 freestyle in my first meet in decades.  He called it a "strong program."

I felt pretty good about my strong program until the meet announcer drew my attention to Bob Doud, who was swimming the 100 butterfly just two hours after competing in the 400 IM. I should also mention that Bob Dowd is currently 89 years old. Dang Bob, that's a strong program!

And then there was Joan Campbell, who started swimming masters at age 59, and was competing in the 200  butterfly at age 82. She also swam the 1500 free, 400 IM, 400 free, 200 breaststroke and 200 free. Dang, Joan, that's a strong program!

This swimming meet was an eye opener. I had a great experience both competing in, and witnesses some fantastic swims from all ages and abilities. I'm looking forward to exploring more of these events in the future. Heck, I've still got nearly 50 years to prepare for doubling up on the 400 IM and 100 butterfly.  

Do your worst, Bob Doud. I'll be bringing my strong program.


  1. It seems like I commented here earlier but I don't see the comment now. Perhaps you deleted it. I think it went something like this:

    Jack got a 1st and a 2nd place in his meet Wednesday. Abe got a second.

    Watching those old fit people swim was inspirational.

    In a couple of the meets we watched, one of the swimmers would stop the freestyle and slowyly backstroke on home. What's that about?

  2. I did not delete it. Ask Blogger what happened to it.

    re: Jack earning a 1snd and 2nd place, & Abe getting a 2nd place -- Awesome! Tell them good job for me & to keep up the good work, 'cause they don't give out ribbons for 29th place, which is what they witnessed me getting in the 100 Free.

    Re: freestyle/backstroke

    101.5.2 Stroke—In an event designated freestyle, the swimmer may swim any style, except that in a medley relay or individual medley event, freestyle means any style other than butterfly, breaststroke or backstroke. Some part of the swimmer must break the surface of the water throughout the race, except it shall be permissible for the swimmer to be completely submerged during the turn and for a distance of not more than 15 meters (16.4 yards) after the
    start and each turn. By that point the head must have broken the surface.

    -- US Masters Swimming Rules

    -- they plagiarized that passage from Leviticus.

    Hey Fred, don't sweat it, nobody but God himself has an original thought.

  3. I'm so proud of my Uncle Bob Doud! He's a truly "great" uncle.

  4. Hi James, thanks for your comment. Your Uncle is an inspiration. He's got the strong program. Cheers!