Monday, 14 March 2011


As usual I have been keeping an eye on my favourite swimming websites/blogs and stealing ideas related to training sessions to spice things up in the pool occasionally. I noticed that Karen Throsby was contemplating 100 x 100m set, a 10km session. Now whilst I have done plenty of pool sessions of that length I have never contemplated such a mind blowing set. I can barely count to ten let alone one hundred, so I asked Karen how on earth she manages...she stated she uses a poolmate wristwatch which counts her laps, strokes and logs other details such as calories used etc

Sounds ideal I thought, so off I went shopping on amazon and sent for the my new gadget without delay at a cost of £60, once it eventually arrived I entered my personal details and headed off to the pool to give it a say I was disappointed is an under statement. I could hardly fit it on my wrist for starters and when it came to reading the display, well, I felt like throwing it against the wall. To keep track of my lap count I normally glance at the display of my trusted Timex at the turns when I think I am somewhere near the required distance. I can quickly do the maths and know the metres covered. With the poolmate, I could only just read the time but certainly not the lap counter whilst on the move or mid turn, the slightest water or fog on my goggles rendered it pretty useless. Suffice to say it is being returned as we speak.

On the other hand (or wrist!) The display on my Timex is easy to read both in the pool, in the lake or in the sea, coupled with its ability to display the temperature, therefore I am going to continue doing the maths and learn to count past the sum of my fingers and toes.
Gadgets aside, last week allowed for some consistent efforts with the following sessions:

Total for the week 25,800m

Congratulations to Kevin Murphy for appointment in his new role as Honourary Secretary of the CS&PF,  I am sure you will do a fantastic job following in the footsteps of Mike and Angela Oram.


Colm Breathnach said...

in the pool, i use the cheapest casio i could get with the biggest display, around €20. Easy enough to read the time on the fly and then work out the distance based on the time. and its nice and small and light.

for the sea, i use a casio one with a temperature reading. mainly for the temp reading. Its accurate enough but its a big lump on your wrist.

Colm Breathnach said...

oh, and for the long sets, 100X100m takes 2:46 on 1:40. Forget about counting the 100's, count the 30min feeds. Just keep going for 2 3/4 hours.

and just in case you were wondering, 200 X 100m takes 5:33 ;-)

i dont know how long 300 X 100 takes (yet)

Karen Throsby said...

Just goes to show that you should never listen to me. I agree about the poor readability of the display. However, the difference between you and I is that my total lack of facility with numbers means that I can't work it out on the go from the times alone, so I have to make do with stopping, squinting at the watchface and then carrying on.

Mark said...

Thanks for that Colm, its always great to get comments and know that people are actually reading the posts.

Karen, you are funny, I am sure you know I was just kidding and that I will not hold you liable for the costs incurred!

Anonymous said...

Currently reading "The Great Swim" about Gertrude Ederle and looking up information about her led me to your blog. You are putting in amazing mileage! And I thought I was doing well with 9-12,000 meters a week!
(Well I guess I am for my goals)- but that's amazing mileage! Best of luck in your swimming endeavors!

Mark said...

Thanks Cheryl..12,000m is still great,thanks for commenting, i get lots of hits but very few comments..happy training


Pete Windridge-France said...

To echo Cheryl's comments - these are impressive numbers! And you've already braved the sea. Good on you!
Well, you've served to kick me up the behind - I'm doing the Channel this year and thought my 19K a week was OK. Now I know I've got to raise my game considerably!
I'm going down to Dover in May - now that really will be a wake up call.

Mark said...

thanks Pete
pleased you are feeling a push to get to Dover for the season...its starts 30 April

are you on the google group for Channel swimmers? Who is your pilot and where are you training at present?

keep in touch


Pete Windridge-France said...

Hi Mark
Just a quick thanks for your help so far! Just to finish this link off (as we've got contact details for each other now), I train at Virgin Active in Leeds - but since I did the Marie Curie Swimathon at JC (50m pool) I'm going to try to get there once a week as it's much better.
Look forward to meeting up! Pete.

Mark said...

No need to thank me
just be glad to train with someone like minded when it comes to the long swims of 4,5,6 hours plus