Something clicked today, with both my mind and understanding of what I should be doing with my stroke – and also my time.
I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been working on my technique under the watchful eye of Ray from SwimCanaryWharf. I go to see Ray once a month and then work on the drills he gives me between sessions.
This morning, towards the end of my drills, something clicked in my mind about the stroke and how Ray wants me work on it. I’m not saying that I’ve cracked it, more that I’ve got over a mental barrier that I hadn’t realised was there. There’s still a lot of work to do to train the body to actually *do* it, but I feel that I now instinctively, rather than theoretically, know what *it* is.
So after 2k of warm up and drills I finished the session off with a timed 400m – something I do fairly regularly just to see how I’m getting on. The result was my fastest 400m yet.
I’m really pleased with that. Not least because I wasn’t feeling it this morning and had to drag myself to the pool, and the pool was busy, so it wasn’t an easy and smooth 400m, I had to fight through a bit of traffic.
However, perhaps the most pleasing this is that this wasn’t an *effort* time, it was a *technique* time. You know what I mean, we can all smash a time that is good and quick, but we’ve put so much effort into it that we can’t speak properly for five minutes afterwards. This wasn’t one of those. I was focused on getting on with it, but wasn’t racing and certainly wasn’t smashing it.
I obviously don’t really care about an individual 400m. What I want to be doing is putting together 20, 40 or ultimately 88 of those in succession. But to do an individual 400m quicker, smoother and easier* than I ever have before is a big leap forward and gives me the confidence that it is starting to work.
*It’s not easy and has taken 4 months of drills to get to this point.