Diana Smith's Web Dispatches
Quality vs. Quantity
Olympian and world-class breaststroker Mark Gangloff shares his thoughts on swimming a quality practice, i.e. "...swimming EVERY lap with a purpose that is physically and/or mentally challenging." See what he learned during five years of trying to shave 1 second off his best time.
Your Holiday Fitness Program
Some tips for maintaining your workout schedule during the holidays...
Fitter With Friends
The social aspect of Masters swimming is one thing (sometimes the only thing!) that gets us to practice, but what you may not know is that working out with friends may actually increase your ability to withstand pain during a tough set.
Training Through Winter
It's getting to be that time of year again...even though we swim indoors it can still be a challenge to get to the pool when the weather's nasty. And for those of you who cross train, running or biking outside in winter is a whole other matter. Here's what a few exercise physiologists have to say about how you can stay the course, even if you don't live in San Diego.
Yoga for Swimmers
More swimmers are incorporating Yoga into their dryland training routines these days. According to Yoga instructor Barbara Won, just 5 minutes a day can help prevent injury, enhance both physical and mental performance, and even improve your posture.
Liquid Yoga website - http://www.liquidyoga.net/
Click on "Yoga Video" for the "Yoga for Swimmers" DVD.
From Boardroom to Blocks
A glimpse into the life of high-profile executive and Masters swimmer Mark Aboud. His goal? "To keep healthy for the long-term and be able to provide for my
family, have energy to meet demands of a high-pressure job, and keep
stress under control." See how he does it, and how he's continually mixing things up to stay fit, motivated, and competition-ready.
Getting to Know Nanaimo
In case you didn't know, beautiful Nanaimo is the host city for next year's Nationals - read all about it's history, rejuvenated downtown, and how you too can get a deep-fried nanaimo bar. Yum!
Rules to Eat By
Collective wisdom on how and what to eat...just click on each of the 20 boxes to the right.
Willpower - Use It or Lose It
Ain't it the truth! Here's the bad news - doing one task that depletes your self-control makes it more difficult to sum up the willpower to do another, such as exercise. The good news is that, "Willpower is like a muscle - the more you use it, the stronger it gets".
Aerobic Exercise a Smart Choice
We know that exercise is good for us and that it can change brain structure and thought patterns...but researchers are now learning that it's aerobic exercise specifically that really makes a difference. Henriette van
Praag, an investigator in the Laboratory of Neurosciences at the
National Institute on Aging, says it's all about growth factors that get carried from the
periphery of the body into the brain, starting a molecular cascade which creates new neurons and connections. This can only happen with the dramatic changes in blood flow that occur with aerobic activities such as running, cycling or swimming.
Masters and High Tech Suits
Some interesting perspectives on the continuing suit debate in this article from reachforthewall.com (Washington Post). Amy Shipley writes, "Some wearers of full-body suits at the masters level don't care whether
they swim in old-fashioned lycra or high-tech polyurethane, they just
want maximum coverage."
5 Great Lakes = 1 Great Swimmer
On Monday August 24th 30-year old teacher and swim coach Paula Stephanson of Ottawa, ON became only the second person to swim all five Great Lakes; the first was Vicki Keith who did it in 1988. Paula completed her 55-K swim of Lake Michigan in 25 hours, 38 minutes.
Pre-Swim Story in the Ottawa Citizen:
Open Water Chicago website - lots of links, including liveblogging updates during the swim, and a video clip of Paula:
Vicki Keith's webpage:
Exercise and Cancer Risk
A Finnish study recently concluded that physically active men were less likely to develop cancer. Researchers also discovered that the harder the exercise, the greater the cancer protection. So once again, intensity is the key. Or in other words, "...in order to use exercise to reduce the risk of cancer, you must make yourself sweat."
Coach Sara McClarty, multiple NCAA swimming award winner turned professional triathlete, posts her team's workouts every week on the National Training Center's blog - great for those days when you're swimming solo. You can click on both long and short course workouts all the way back to November 2008. Thanks to triathlete blogger Stennerson for the link.
National Training Center Workouts:
Coach Sara's website: