Friday, April 04, 2008

DAY 1 – USAT Level 2 Clinic

So what did I learn today?

First speaker of the day was Bobby McGee for both the mental aspects of the athlete and then for running form technique. Lot's of old stuff that I already knew, but it was a great refresher. The new stuff is what is really going to help with running form technique issues that some runners have.

  1. Lean will determine cadence. Trick is to make sure that the athlete is leaning from the right position so that the hips stay over the feet and the shoulders are inline with the hips. In other words – lean from the ankles. Which is where ankle flexibility and calf flexibility is important. Quick test – feet shoulder width apart, now sit down on your haunches without raising your heels. If heels lift off the ground chances are you have Achilles issues, PF issues, and also will not be able to actively use the feet for adequate 'rebound' for the run. So practice sitting on your haunches.
  2. Another way to teach lean, especially with women is to take two mountainbike tubes and a piece of a smaller tube, have the athlete put one tube on as if it was a jacket (behind your head, arms, and in front of the stomach. Next in back tie the tube together with the other small bit of tube (about 10 inches worth). Now put the other tube into that area and pull back on the athlete – forcing the athlete to lean into the tube and try to run away from you.
  3. Or stand in front of athlete – hands on their shoulders/chest and have them lean into your body (keeping things inline) and push – it's a way for them to see how important body position is for a stronger push off the foot (or rebound).
  4. Hands stay inside the elbows.
  5. Imagine you have a pierced hole in your ear that has a string running through it – grab that string and (forms a triangle with the arms) and swing from the elbows.
  6. Muscles can only pull…they can't push – so don't actively push off the feet.
  7. If your feet splay outwards while running? Imagine that your KNEE going through a straight line.
  8. Lean from the ankles
  9. If you lay down and your feet turn out quickly (splayed) – then you have week glutes.
  10. If you do the side plank and the thing that hurts first is the top hip (not the core side you are working on that is at the bottom) then your glutes (med/minimus) are weak.
  11. How to strengthen them? Side Plank, Tubing around both knees – bend at knees/hips and ankle – feet a bit more than shoulder width apart and take tiny steps to the side.
  12. Quiet and Quick are what you want for your running.
  13. Drills – pony step, running on thin ice (pitter patter), fall forward, push the road.

The Body does not determine the limitations….the Mind does!

Then we talked all about creating mentally effective athletes.

More on that later!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Swim workouts 3/31-4/6

Got a busy week planned ahead! Leave on Thursday to attend the USAT Level 2 Coaches Certification Seminar down in Chapel Hill. So hopefully I'll be learning some new and exciting things that I can give my clients. One of the guest speakers is Bobby McGee (author of 'Magical Running') so I'm looking forward to meeting him and picking his brains.

Everyone had a great weekend of racing – couldn't be happier!

Group A

Group B

Description/Rest Interval

Distance (a/b)

6 x 100

3 x 100

25 swim, 25 kick on side, 25 drill, 25 swim – RI is 15 Sec


5 x 200

5 x 100

Good steady effort – free w/30 SR


10 x 100

10 x 50

Odds Free fast, evens choice stroke – no free please – w/30 SR




Pull w/paddles – long strokes, and focus on control and rotation of the hips




Cool down by drilling




Workout #2

Group A

Group B

Description/Rest Interval

Distance (a/b)

10 x 50

6 x 50

25 swim, 25 drill (see below) w/10 SR


3 x 1000

3 x 500

As follows: #1 – every 4th 25 is backstroke, #2 – every 4th 25 is FAST free, #3 is for A group – 500 IM by 25's (100IM+100IM…etc), then 500 free quick . B group is 250 backstroke/250 freestyle quick – all with 1 MR between


8 x 50

8 x 25

FAST FREE w/30 SR – blast it




Cool down drills



Drill of the week – Catch up freestyle with undulation (no real free kick) – start off by undulating off the wall (think dead man float with dolphin kick – in other words you will be ON TOP OF THE WATER). For undulation focus on pressing the chest down each time your hand enters the water (hands in, chest down, hips up). Both arms are in front in superman position (remember to look for criminals at the bottom of the pool) – press chest, stroke with one arm, breath to the side, hand recovers back to superman, now do the same with the other arm!