Tri-Factor Series 2013
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TYR goggles was my always my first choice in the swimming pool, pronounced as (Tah-Yer), but I usually just call them T-Y-R when I need to buy one from the departmental store, this is because when I pronounce them, the sales person would go What? you can buy them at the car shop, so its easier just to say T-Y-R, just so you know TYR is named after the Norse god of victory (Tier)
Today I wont be reviewing about TYR products but more Aquasphere, This brand has been around since 1998 and has been making waves around the triathlon world, I went online did some reading on it but nothing much on its website beside their usual product description and all.
The Aquasphere range of goggles are not your usual goggles as it they made them into this odd shape lens or so I thought, recently I got myself the Aqua Sphere Kayenne because my trusty TYR goggles is leaking and fogging up on me
So here is what I think of it after a couple of months using it in the pool.
The goggles had all the Italian style from where it came from, even the packaging it came was cool, it was packed in a hard, reusable case which keeps the googles from getting scratch in the swim bag.
Fit/Comfort: When I first put the Kayenne on, It felt that it was made to fit my face, I am sure it has something to do with the design, the fit is comfortable and adjusting these goggles to the right fit was the EASIEST thing I have ever felt before, All the tugging and pulling of your google strap is a thing of the past with the Kayenne as it has this button on both side where you just push and adjust to the proper sizing.
Seal: The seal fits great, once adjusted to my contour of my face, I will usually give it one more push at the bridge to make it seal tighter, Once I’ve had them adjusted properly, they seal just nice and tight. I hadn’t have too much issue with leaks but I did face a slight leak whenever I push off the wall (with excess force) but should be no problem if it is in OWS.
Clarity/Fogging: This goggles are beautiful to begin with for its 180 degree view, the clarity on the smoked lens that I have bought is just crystal clear. The tint was just about right to be used in any light condition even in the evening setting sun. I am sure they are very versatile in all sorts of light condition . There was no fogging issue even when I have them on for the whole session and in between breaks.
Negative : I only found that this goggles strap moved when I placed it over my head, but that’s about it, maybe I am too rough when it comes to placing the goggle over my swim cap.
Isaac’s 2 Cents Worth:
The good: Goggles fit to a T and it feels like you have no goggles on. Its really comfortable and the 180degree view is just perfect for OWS or in a crowded pool , goggle design are very stunning.
The bad: My strap moved when wearing them over my swim cap but that should be no problem with the release button to adjust it again.
I can’t wait to try their other range out, but I am so attracted to the Kayenne for its functionality and looks. If you are looking to buy goggles to replace, I highly recommend this to you.
Breathing in the water or rather constant exhalation is a necessary skill for an efficient freestyle stroke, but many athletes (especially newbies) have a tendency to hold their breath underwater even for myself. To master your exhale, try this sink-down exercise from coaches Paul Newsome and Adam Young of Swimsmooth.com. If you’re surprised by how hard you have to exhale in order to sink to the bottom, the coaches say this means you’re not exhaling strongly enough in your normal stroke.
1. Tread water in the deep end.
2. Take a deep breath, bring your arms to the side or above your head.
3. Picture yourself letting out a big sigh as you start to exhale. Try to sink straight down to the bottom with no pauses.
4. Once your lungs are out of air, push off and come back to the surface.
If you struggle to sink, you may be subconsciously holding your breath. If you sink a little but pop back up to the surface, you may need to exhale more quickly. The coaches also suggest making a “brrrr” sound through your lips, to help your exhale. Once you’ve nailed the exercise, do three sink-downs in a row before your workout to release tension and remind yourself of proper breathing technique.
If you have notice most of my current training post are regards to swimming , its because Tri Factor swim is just around the corner, In the last few months 80% of my training regime has been in the swimming pool doing drills and laps, I have not totally neglected my bike and run its just that priorities first. If you have a good training program for the pool do share with me and the readers.
Next post, what I think of the Aqua Sphere Kayene goggle that I have tried out for a couple of months now
Swim drills, swim session and swim post has been popping up on my blog recently, did the swimming craze hit me? did King Neptune came into my dream and told me to swim more often? none of those of course, it is because I have registered myself on 12 of May for the Tri Factor Swim challenge.
Tri Factor includes all the three elements of Triathlon before their full Triathlon even which will be held later in the year. I actually encouraged this as its like a lead up to the actual event, coming in the Month of May the swim event will take place, then in July it will be the bike session, and then run and then full OD.
You can have only so much Triathlon event in Singapore in a Year, even if they have 50 events I don’t think I want to be doing all of them cause its always the same ole same ole.
Just sharing this cute infograph that I had received from Tri Factor reminding people to join the Swim Event this May. Have fun and Stay safe readers.
I have always head to the pool doing laps after laps with 80% of front crawl and 20% breast stroke all the time, I am not sure if it was the best way to train as I am only improving those few muscle group. I was a club swimmer, training with the boys doing 50m freestyle competition but never got to signing up for one, have friends who are on the national squad but never took any swim tips from them.
Since I am doing triathlons and Ironman for the love of it, when it comes to the swim part I can tell you,I am definitely not fast even after so many swim sessions, ,sessions after sessions my time never seem to improve. I also never used other strokes like the backstroke or butterfly, never wondered why I need the them for, this conversation between speedy @trimeon and coach @felog in my feed were conversing about backstroke got me intrigued. I went all out and in search for the missing piece to understand why a backstroke was needed in our training session
So what happens now is that, I am gonna put in post some backstroke drills that I am gonna use and try on my next swim session..
The backstroke is easy to learn and helpful to triathletes for multiple reasons. It counteracts swimmer’s “shoulder slouch” by engaging upper-back muscles and lengthening pectorals, it can provide an opportunity to calm breathing or clear goggles during an open-water swim and it breaks up monotony in the pool. Plus, kicking while on your back serves as good cross-training for major cycling muscles such as the hip flexors, core and quads.
Try these sets:
• 4×75 with 15 seconds rest (25 free/25 back/25 free)
• 1×600 [4x(100 freestyle strong effort/50 backstroke easy)]
• 8×50 on 1:15 (25 back/25 free) descend time 1-4, 5-8
Five technique tips:
1. Tilt chin up and look at the sky. This puts head and spine in good alignment. Do not look toward your toes, as it causes hips to sink.
2. Push hips toward the surface and maintain a steady up and down flutter kick. Keep feet just below the surface of the water. Do not rotate feet with the rest of body.
3. Hands exit the water thumb first and enter the water pinky first. This requires a slight wrist and shoulder rotation as a straight arm moves through the air.
4. Arms enter the water straight up from shoulders and do not cross the center line overhead. Swimming backstroke in a straight line is difficult without following pool lines. Keep zigzags to a minimum with consistent arm placement.
5. The key to backstroke is good upper-body rotation with a motionless head. Try to roll your left shoulder to your chin as the right pinky enters the water and vice versa
drills taken from Triathlete Competitor By Sara McLarty
this is the continuation of “How to Swim Faster?” from the first part. If you just dropped in, please go to “How to Swim Faster” Part 1
Principle #4: Swimming More on Your Sides
The first way to improve propulsion is to roll more from side to side with each arm stroke. Rolling more on your sides allows you to better engage the large back muscles in addition to the shoulder muscles. However, spending more time on your side is unusual at first and needs some getting used to.
Principle #5: Using Your Core
This is another secret of how to swim faster. You should engage the large back, hip and torso muscles while rolling from side to side. The synergy between your core muscles and arm muscles allows you to apply more force to your swim stroke.
It is a little bit like a baseball pitcher when he throws the ball: first his body twists backward, then his hips initiate a rotation forward which is channeled through his upper body into his shoulder, arm, hand and finally into the ball, with an acceleration at each step.
Once you have integrated this technique, you will be able to swim longer and faster and tire less quickly, as your core muscles have more endurance than the ones in your shoulders and arms.
Principle #6: Anchoring Your Arms
This is the last piece of the puzzle on how to swim faster with less effort. Before applying any force on your propulsive arm, you need to make sure that your hand and forearm are aligned and facing backward. You can then effectively move your arm backward like big paddle.
This swimming technique is often called the “high elbow catch” in the freestyle stroke because you need to keep your elbow high in relationship to your wrist to be able to successfully do this.
Hope you have enjoyed the two part series of the “How to Swim Faster”
Swimming Faster is a fascination for many, I just finished a swim yesterday after a month of no activity due to my feet injury and also because race season is over. I felt funny not to train after so long but I am sure definitely out of breath swimming my usual 3 x 500m in the pool yesterday (no more races till 2013)
I have always wondered how to swim faster, Have you been wondering how to swim faster for months or even years without ever finding a satisfactory answer? If this is the case, well, you are in good company.
This article by enjoy-swimming.com describes six principles that will allow you to swim faster without becoming exhausted too quickly.
Swimming Smarter not Harder
For many coaches, swimming faster is the result of gradually increasing the length and intensity of swimming workouts so that the general fitness level increases.
While conditioning has its place, this is not all there is about how to swim faster, because swimming is a very technical sport. There are a few gifted swimmers that instinctively learn how to move efficiently in the water. Given enough time and practice, they will always improve. (this for me have not been the case..but I believe so)
But most of us only have a vague sense about our efficiency in the water. Remember, we are land animals! Because of this, swimming lots of lengths will often only make our bad habits more permanent, while our swimming technique only improves slowly or even not at all.
So what do we need to do? In fact, to learn how to swim faster and better with less effort, we need to swim smarter, not harder. Specifically, we need to work on two facets of our technique:
- We need to decrease drag in the water.
- We need to improve propulsion in the water.
The importance of swimming with the least amount of drag is often neglected. However, this is an area where we can greatly improve our efficiency in the water.
Water is much more dense than air. Drag in the water increases by the square of the speed at which we swim. So there is quickly an upper limit on how much force we can apply against the water to increase our speed.
On the other hand, reducing drag requires SKILLS rather than force. So there’s a lot of room for improvement there. That’s why it should be the top priority of learning how to swim faster.
Principle #1: Improving Your Balance
The first and most efficient way to decrease drag is to improve your balance. This means that you try to stay as horizontal as possible while moving through the water. When you do this, you disrupt the least amount of water molecules on your path, which translates into reduced drag.
As an example, while swimming freestyle, swimmers often lift their head to breathe or look ahead. When they do this, they lose balance and their hips and legs drop. Their body is less streamlined and generates more drag while moving through the water. Additionally, they need to kick harder to keep those legs up. Needless to say, a lot of energy is wasted while doing this.
Note that being as horizontal as possible is especially important for the freestyle and backstroke. For the breaststroke and butterfly, things are a little bit different because a body undulation occurs during the stroke cycle.
Principle #2: Swimming Taller
The next way to decrease drag is to make yourself as tall as possible in the water. The theory behind this is that for the same mass, a long tapered object moving through the water creates less turbulence than a short compact object. In fact this principle has been used by naval engineers since hundreds of years. I have learned to walk tall but I believe this
To swim taller in the freestyle stroke, you enter your recovering arm early in the water once it has passed your head. You also make sure to completely extend your recovering arm forward underwater before starting the down sweep and catch.
Principle #3: Compact and Efficient Kick
In world-class front crawl swimmers, the kick contributes for up to 10% of propulsion, while the arm stroke contributes for the rest. So an efficient kick is important for fast swimming, but less than what is commonly believed.
What is equally important is a compact kick, meaning that it should neither break the water surface nor move too low below the body line. Otherwise unnecessary drag is created which will only slow you down.
Once you have reduced drag to a minimum, you can work on improving your propulsion. Again, this is mainly done by improving your swim stroke mechanics, not by building bigger muscles.
to be continues in the part 2…
The race is finally over, after skipping two run races, I finally did my triathlon after waiting for 4 weeks. That was how long it took my legs to feel better, Special shoutout to Team Triboys Ian Faria and his bro Chris for sending me this neat transition towel. Will be racing Escape from Alcatraz with them soon in the near future. If you wanna hook up for training or racing with the boys you can search Instragam hashtag or on twitter for #teamtriboys and you will definitely see them handsome hunks. Once again thanks boys and see you guys soon.
If you guys didn’t know what happened, lemme clue you in before you laugh at my miserable time, I was training for my “North Face 50k which is held in October” and my feet accidentally ran over a tree root, it angled 90degrees with a very loud crack and that was into my 4k out of my 15k trail run (I finished the whole 15k in pain if you are wondering) It all just went downhill after that. I had my feet X-ray and Doc cleared me, some how or rather the pain still persist till today. All I could train for this Tri event was swim and bike.
So kingdom come came and went. It was good sunny morning on last Saturday. Met with many of the boys before the swim felt a bit humid but its all in the fun. The swim leg got delayed
Participant had to make two loop for the swim and so how did the swim went? it went something like this.. choppy sea water, got hit in the face on my first 100m with my goggles knocked off my face, water got into my eyes and it stings like mad… got grabbed, groped and whatever you can think of, but hey that is why they call it the “Washing Machine”, you don’t join a tri event to have silky smooth swimming pool water do ya? came out of the first loop and saw my watch for the first 750m, did a 16min but I nearly had a massive cramp when I was near to shore, I stop short of shore line and my legs couldn’t feel the ground, so I was curling my leg to feel ground and with that awkward leg position I nearly had a muscle pull on my calf, you know those massive super cramp. Did not want to put myself in danger and don’t think I can afford a big cramp to my calf on the second loop. I didn’t kick as much on the second lap and I swam cautiously and closely to the line just in case my leg cramps up. Swim time: 43min
Bike leg is always fun, went into T1 and took my gel and first time I did not place my shoe clipped ready on my bike for fast transitioning as this was a two week old shoe, have not put enough mileage into them shoes yet. Bike loop was an insane six loop over ECP with many dangerous turns (saw a couple of people bleeding pretty badly and bandaged up) … Road Marshal was shouting like crazy saying DANGER .. BIG GROUP AHEAD GO SLOW (er… its a race.. GO SLOW??) well I do hope the revamp the bike segment next time for a better and safer riding race. I was looking at my bike meter and it went like 32 – 34avg that was all I wanted nothing more nothing less and before my last lap I will usually take in some carbs for the run segment and guess what, silly me had to drop my packet of gel on the road, It was a decision for me to pick it up or leave it, I left it (was it a poor decision? I don’t know) Bike Time: 1hr17min
Here comes the moment of truth, I told myself either I die running or I walked to the end in my run segment. went in T2, grabbed my headband put on my shoes, went out running in less than 2min and boy I could (NOT) run, after leaving the run out, massive cramps came into my thigh and I know for sure that without run training it will definitely kill me. Its not that this is my first race.. I never felt cramps this bad before, I practically walked and hop myself for the first 2km or so.. What was I thinking.. four weeks and not even one training on my run.
Never let your head hang down. Never give up and sit down and grieve. Find another way. And don’t pray when it rains if you don’t pray when the sun shines. – Richard M. Nixon
On the 3k mark, a familiar face came behind, tapped and passed me, It was Benny who was in one age group behind, he finally caught me in the run segment (all things going through my head now, thinking of stopping and quitting the race as its going to be a real pathetic race for sure) but I told my self #HTFU and keep going, and so I did.. yes the final run was terrible but I won’t let my head hang in shame. Yes it’s also the worst 10k time ever for me in my running career but I will not let it stop me. I will come back stronger (if my doc cleared me of any problems to my feet) Time: 1hr 17min
Well its the end of the race and I am glad all my buddies was here with me. Not that I am proud of the time, but I sure finished it.. if your wondering yes the pain in my leg still persist. I am heading for an MRI this week. I wont let it damper my mood for me in the upcoming 2013 races that I have signed up for.
PS: word of advice, train before you go for a race. Dont be like stupid me.
Training partners are always great in terms of being motivated and seeking advise.. no matter doing triathlon, Ironman or Ultra running, that is why I frequently used this hashtag #foreveralone cause I am more often than not alone when doing training.
Training for an event demands much from an athlete such as mental focus and more importantly discipline in all aspect of schedule, diet and workout.
I met Zurairi by chance, one day when I was training but I will not expound on that part, as he already had explain of our moment in his featured article. Do read up on his write-up as guest post on his determination to be a Triathlete (if you say you can’t, this post might change you) Do follow him on Twitter @arieternity where he shares his passion for triathlon.
Guest Writer: Zurairi (Singapore) 27 August 2012
My Journey to be Triathlete
After my Kidney Transplant in 2008, (Previous post) , I decided to exercise because my doctor told me to control my cholesterol level. I also wanted to exercise because keeping fit and healthy will ensure lesser complications due to my condition. After 3 months rest from the post operation, I realise my fitness level is very low after I was struggling and panting after climbing the flight of steps at the overhead bridge. I realise that I need to start soon.
I started with very light jogging around my neighbourhood. It was about 1.2km route around my block of flats. My friend also introduced me to swimming. Mr Razib is a triathlete and he taught and coached me the techniques of swimming freestyle. In 2008, I started (more…)
Eddy had his first swim trials today, Benny and myself kinda pressured him into signing up his first triathlon knowing he could definitely blast through an Olympic Distance (OD) with ease, and registered he did, BUT… he signed up for a sprint instead. .. anyway its better than not signing up !! +1 for you buddy. Singapore Triathlon here we come.
The assurance of knowing he can do a full OD was because he came along with us on our Ironman training, laps after laps he followed albeit not fast he finished it all.. its the spirit that keep us going is it not?
Knowing very well of his timing, where he is able to run a sub 1hr 10k, swim a good 40min 1.5k it’s the bike equation that was missing because he never tag along (and silly me asking him to buy a bike to train with us).. little did I know he already had a bike, sneaky sneaky , I was even shocked when I was told he was a group cyclist with the Joyriderz before, not a member but he tagged along.. really sneaky dude..
So yup today was his swim trials and I met up with him at Kallang Basin swimming complex in Geylang Bahru to give some morale support,not that he needed it but I could get some time in the pool as well.
It started at 7.45am with a short brief and then the (more…)
This coming 9 am, 4th Aug (Women’s Triathlon) and 11:30am 7th August (Men’s Triathlon) Countries from all over the world will be racing for Gold, Silver and Bronze in the triathlon event. It is going to be a fast paced race with all the accomplished athletes racing for their country.
Just FYI: There are no heats in the Triathlon; both the men’s and women’s events consist of a single race. So who will you be rooting for ? My Take will be New Zealand for Gold, GBR for Silver and US of A for bronze for the mens race. Agreed?
As host nation.. I will post their competing athletes here
And here are the round up for (more…)
Something is brewing up in the coming next few days, do watch for this Icon .. Do follow my blog to get the updates ! this will be interesting. Do let me know if you know what that this icon means ? Can’t reveal too much for the moment.
As I always say “No Helmet, No Ride”
“pull buoy or leg float” - is a figure-eight shaped piece of closed-cell foam used in swim workouts. Swimmers place the buoy between the legs in the crotch area to provide support to the body without kicking the legs; this allows the swimmer to focus on training only their arms
Seriously, Swimming has not been my forte and I do suck at it, maybe cause of all the blubber that is sticking on my sides of my waist, (and people say it makes you float easy) yeah right.. those fats do weigh something and it contributes to you sinking in water.. *ok that’s not true* its simple because of our body positioning and (more…)
You know lots of people are scared of the water According to a survey, nearly 86 percent of adults and 91 percent of children and young adults admitted to being afraid of something. When a fear becomes irrational and unbearable, it can turn into a strange, funny or even weird phobia.
Well I surely can’t make your phobia away, but I can share some water funnies with you .. enjoy laugh away !
I know most of you Ironman/Triathletes are always worrying bout your swim, unless you have your own personal coach or you are already a pro, as for myself I am always worried cause no matter how much I train, I can’t go fast enough, It always cause I have no discipline when it comes to performing drills in the pool, Let me share some good drills that might improve the swim leg if I am discipline enough. Enjoy ..
I also added the following video of Michael Phelps doing Freestyle in Multi angle underwater cam, this video “I LIKE”
This is another favorite video of mine by Pro Triathlete Scott Neyedli showing off a very good freestyle stroke
Have fun training and I do hope this post got you inspired ! NOW GO GET EM TIGER !!