There are many places in the world where athletes are training diligently and that is a very important component in the equation for success. Whenever we compete at big meets where we rest, shave and taper we are attempting to achieve one of the most important things we teach, namely how to perform our best when it counts the most. There are not too many places in the world where athletes learn this vital skill, the one of dealing with the pressures and being able to perform as planned. We want our program to be recognized by our athletes as one of those places. And so it is that when we reflect on these meets we learn the most valuable lessons, indeed far more valuable than the ones we learn during training sessions. In no particular order here are some of the items on our list after the Texas Grand Prix.
- 1 - 10 weeks of training is good but not as beneficial as 30.
- 2 - No matter how much speed you have you MUST be able to swim the last 25 yards or meters with conviction.
- 3 - You must be able to compare suits to suits...meaning tech suits to textile suits as regards to times achieved.
- 4 - If you benefited greatly from a tech suit then you need to build your own body into one of those suits. Reduce not so much your weight - though that will help - as much as your percentage of body fat. Core strength is critical.
- 5 - Value your swim based upon the construction and competitiveness of it and not merely the time...see #4 above.
- 6 - When you swim a great race you absolutely must take that passion and pour it into your next round of training. You are now free to train at a higher level of intensity.
- 7 - When things don't work out the way you planned, allow yourself a moment or three of disappointment...and then get over it (and yourself if need be!).
The second great quote at the meet came from one of our swimmers who was offering some assistance to a teammate who was disappointed in a swim. We really liked this one a lot...if we owned a T-shirt shop we'd put it on one now.
"The art of this sport is being able to pick yourself up after a disappointment like this." A. Sayadi