Definitely the coldest morning of the winter so far.
“Surfmuffin!”- a call from the cold wasteland on the edge of darkness as Marty materializes from the pool deck and jumps into the frigidly lukewarm water of Victoria Park pool, 0605hrs.
Ok, SM knows the weight is still a few kilos above 100, but “muffin”?
Start of the training week and it’s sets of 500 after the warm up and drills are over, with 3 x 200 in between, with pull buoys and sea claws (paddles) thrown in. All up get 4.2k done. Vlad patrols the dark edge of the watery universe as his charges traipse up and down, up and down, in search of the magic formula to perfect technique and Apollonian conditioning.
It was like a swim wear fashion show in the middle fastie lane – fluorescence green with black tiger stripes from Nicola and a purple on white print from the new fast girl who goes into the slow lane when her boyfriend shows up for a swim. Not to mention all the other ones. It’s one thing to get your ass handed to you on every lap as the nymphs from the deep end glide effortlessly past but the fashion parade certainly eases the pain.
The muppet is gazumped again by Jai and in trying to claw back the metres to get onto her toes tries a form of mutant dog paddle in a forlorn hope of speeding up – and it works!! Might even trademark it and do a video for YouTube targeting hopelessly slow and backward swimmers wanting to steal a few metres on their training buddies by hook or by crook.
The mutant dog paddle is a mixture of freestyle and doggie paddle. So, both arms are out in front by default but instead of the stroke ending just in front of the shoulder like your average mongrel, the stroke is carried through in the fashion of your normal free-styling humanoid. The catch up configuration is important, with early vertical forearm (getting technical here) emulating the downward stroke of the canine style.
Will have to do the video as mere words do not do justice to this revolutionary concept in swimming technique.
Talk in the sheds afterwards was on how fast swimming condition is lost even after a week. Then it was all about the fashion parade and James’ return to the pool after a fantastic sojourn and much adventuring in exotic Thailand.
Meanwhile the World Cup progresses and muppet’s new work colleague, Diana from Columbia, is getting more and more excited as her team advances to the quarter finals.