Postal Pentathlon

For those of us (I count myself in this number) who enjoy swimming something other than freestyle all the time, there is a postal swim that you may want to be a part of. Minnesota Masters have organized a postal pentathlon over the past few years where swimmers can swim all four strokes and an individual medley. You can choose sprint, middle, or ironman distances for your swim. This event runs through December 15 so you still have time to get this swim in.

Pssst, tell your Coach that this may be a good workout idea for a Saturday practice...

aybe it's a Minnesota thing, but pentathlons seem to be popular there. When I was in college, my coach had us do the same thing during the first week of official team practice. But I digress, back to the post.

here to download the entry form and pick your poison. Good luck to everybody!


Spinning a new web(site)

Over the last few days, our new webmaster has been spinning a new website for us. We will finally have an updated website that will provide additional information to our visitors and present that content in a visually-appealing manner.

With that in mind, here is the new URL that you need to go to:


Right now the site is under construction but it has the meet entry forms for our three short-course meets this fall along with the two open water events in Mexico.

The site will officially launch in about three weeks and will have much more content than before. We will also add new style and functional elements over the coming weeks and months. So keep coming back to visit the new and improved site.


San Felipe Open Water Swim

There is going to be another open water swim in the Sea of Cortez this October! This event will be on the Baja California side of the sea in San Felipe. El Dorado Ranch is putting this event on for the first time this year. The swim will be 2000M and will be held on Sunday October 7. If you are interested in this event, click here to download the form.


Sponsorship at Upcoming Meets

In most sporting events, sponsorship plays a key role in the strength of the organization. Companies want their brands associated with particular sports or activities because it helps them reach a desired market.

Take Formula One for example, BMW-Sauber will collect over 300 million Euros this year from their sponsors to enable their team to compete in front of fans worldwide at each race this year.

Other sports like triathlon, running, mountain biking, and many more do the same on a smaller scale. Masters swimming is no different and there are some good opportunities coming up this fall. There are already some companies that will support upcoming meets, but we can always add more...

USMS swimmers are a highly-desirable demographic, most companies would be thrilled to be able to target this market. So if you own a business, work for a corporation or organization, or know somebody who does, let them know that they can promote their business while helping to support swimming. More details on sponsorship levels and programs will be announced in the near future so stay tuned!


New Blog Contributor

Over the past couple of years, we have had several notable athletes contribute to our blog.

Olympian Beth Barr (Isaak).

World and National Champion Jeff Commings.

Open Water maven June Hussey.

Now we will have a top-level swimmer, coach, and triathlete (what a trifecta!) contributing to the blog. Francis Donovan lives in the Phoenix metro area but originally hails from the Chicago area. He went to college at UW-Madison and is working as a coach and at a local bicycle shop. I'll let him introduce himself more during his first post but I wanted to let everybody know how excited I am to have him contribute.

Many of our swimmers are triathletes and have specialized training needs. Francis will be able to help them along with other swimmers with his advice. He has a great deal of experience to contribute and I am sure you will find his postings helpful.

Welcome Francis!


Back with a vengeance

I'm baaaack!

As many of you know, I took seven weeks off after my great swimming at the Tucson Ford USA Swimming meet at the beginning of June. Thanks to all the masters swimmers from Ford who cheered me on while timing. It helped get me through the last 15 meters!

I've been back in the water for a month now, and I'm still not in the best shape. The pool was closed all last week, and the alternative -- swimming in a public pool that is not aerated -- was a poor option, so I only swam once last week. So all my efforts to get into shape by the end of August might be in vain. I'd be lucky to be ready to start an abbreviated sprint training program by mid-September.

My strokes don't feel right, which is fine, but I don't have much time to do drills to correct problems. I do them in warmup and warmdown, and during some sets if I can fit them in. This season, I'm working on bilateral breathing on freestyle and getting more power out of my legs in all my strokes, and my focus events are the 100 breast and 200 IM. I haven't done a shaved 200 IM since last November, and it wasn't good because I didn't train for it.

My next meet is the Ron Johnson Invite in November. Looking forward to it.


LCM Team Results

Our National Team did well at the Woodlands last weekend, scoring eighth place (540 points) in the combined results. This is outstanding considering we had a smaller team than we had at Short Course Nationals and that the conditions were more difficult. Way to go team!

But wait, this is not the end of the line! We still have the La Jolla open water swim coming up along with the big SCM regional meet in Long Beach. If you have not participated in either of these events before, you may want to give one or both of them some thought. It would give you another chance to don your National Team t-shirt and swim with your fellow 'Zonies.

Well done everybody!


Good Advice - Again

Laura Smith has posted another good article on the USMS website. This one is on beating the blahs in practice, a topic most of us encounter every so often at workouts.

Admit it, you get the blahs...it's ok.

Give it a read when you have a moment, it contains some great thoughts on how to handle this situation. Thank Laura next time you see her!

Now you know how to keep the blahs at bay!


Year Three

My, how time flies! Two years ago I started this blog as a way of posting short articles and information for masters swimmers in Arizona. We are starting YEAR THREE this month! It is still going strong and getting better! Thanks to writers like Jeff Commings, June Hussey, and Beth Isaak we have some good postings to share. We will have some more contributors coming on-board soon so keep your eyes open.

Thanks for reading and keep coming back for more...our best days are ahead of us.


Long Swim, Long Island to Larchmont

On July 28, I had the opportunity to fulfill a life-long dream: I swam across Long Island Sound. Now, if you know the Sound at all, you know that there are wide parts and narrow parts. I swam the narrowest part...just under four miles. The coolest thing about it was being part of an event that raised more than One Million Dollars to fight cancer. For a detailed (and I mean detailed) account of the event, and my preparations for it, please visit my swim blog.


Long Bridge Swim

If anyone is looking for a very fun and beautiful open water event, this should certainly be on your mind. This year (August 4) was the 13th annual event and, judging by the 500+ swimmers who showed up for the community swim and the 109 swimmers who competed in the USMS Championship event, I imagine this is a swim that will be around for years.

There are a number of reasons Arizonans should consider adding this to their ‘summer open water’ race repertoire:

The race organizers, volunteers and community really got behind this event, keeping it fun, but still competitive. Check out their website next year if you’re looking for something to do in early August.

Patrick Brundage


Sun Devil Social at the Valley Ho

Over the past few months, the Sun Devil Masters have organized social events for their swimmers (and spouses) at venues throughout the Valley. A few weeks ago, they held an event at the Valley Ho in Scottsdale. The following are some pictures from that night.

These events are a great way for people to get together outside of the pool and socialize. It is much easier to talk when you are not doing a set of 100's on a short rest interval!

Not only that, y
ou can see what other swimmers look like without their cap and goggles on!

...and meet some of your tormentors!

If your team has organized social events and has photos, feel free to send them to me.

Party on!


National Team - Long Course

In a few weeks, Arizona is sending a team to the Woodlands (just outside of Houston) to swim at Long Course Nationals. Here is our National Team for this event:

Hop Bailey
Monica M Bailey
Brigid J Bunch
Henry L Clark
Kurt F Dickson
Dave G Gemmill
Judy L Gillies
Ted Haartz
Al Jaegers
Robyn L Kondrad
David G Peters
Lou Silverstein
Jim S Stites
Jeffrey S Utsch
Dianne L Wygal-Springer

Good luck to all of our swimmers!

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