Testing and Swimming with Fatigue

Today Fiona and I did a 1.5KM Swim test in the outdoor 50meter pool. That’s because this is rest and test week of the Build 1 Phase. We are testing to see if we are consistent across the full test and of course if we are improving. I went 24:51 and for each 250m lap went 3:57, 4:10, 4:10, 4:10, 4:10, 4:11. We had warmed up with 6 x 50m w/ 20s recovery and finished with 300m c/d. Before the workout I had a full sugar red bull and some banana bread. We can see that the consistency was there sitting on 1:40/100meters but how does this stack up to other recent tests?

5 Days ago, during Big Day Out I went 22:39. Certainly 2minutes and 12 seconds slower is quite slow! From a 1:32/100 avg to todays 1:39/100m. What was the difference? WETSUIT! I have large legs. At 7-8% body fat, I’m considered overweight in BMI because I carry so much muscle. This really drops my legs when swimming and for a person like me, see drastic benefits when the wetsuit is put on. I have had time to recover since that 8 hour training day all at race effort, I also have some muscular injuries in on the back of my pelvic bone and in my trapezius, and I’m up 1 KG because of water retention in the carbs I have been eating but I know I didn’t slow down THAT much.

Maybe the closest comparison is my 1K test from December 18th 2014 vs today March 12th 2015. On that day I went 16:32 while going all out for a 1K and today I went 16:27 while going all out for 1.5K. So a 5 second improvement isn’t all that great which leads me to think that yes, I’m still quite fatigued from BDO and my injuries are playing on me. In reviewing my history through my Training Log, I did find out that I went 15:43 for 1K in the outdoor 50m pool on January 15th in Geelong training. Reviewing this one more time, I would say that I am definitely still fatigued. However, there is one thing that can be taken from today’s effort. I am able to consistently hold the 1.5K effort. Now, I already knew that this would occur since on BDO it wasn’t until 2.9K where the pace started to slow. But it’s important to see that effort can remain consistent even when fatigued.

How does this play into training? It’s important to know what a true test effort is. 25m pool, 50m pool, wetsuit, and non wetsuit will all give different 1K tests. If you train to your 1K effort under one set and use another in training; then you’re not training correctly. Next, even if you feel Ok, you can still be carrying around considerable fatigue. Also, looking forward, I will make sure that during Peak and Race week I try to shed as much fatigue as possible while maintaining more recovery; this week I felt very stiff w/ 2 days off. Well, I hope this helps you be able to think about why you might be strong in one test vs the other. For me, the focus is on continual improvement and if I don’t look back at where I’ve come from, how will I ever know where I’m going?

Feel free to msg with any comments: kevinpatrickcoyle@gmail.com

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