Articles

My Irish Masters Open 2019

Choosing the events This year, for the first time since 2016, I didn’t need to use the Irish Masters Open to prepare for a larger international gala. This meant I had a little bit more freedom in the events I wanted to do. So, in January when I sat down to do my entries, I... Continue Reading →

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Short but Sweet

This session came about last weekend when myself and my sister Claire went for a swim. The pool was unexpectedly busy so we had to figure out how to get an aerobic workout in, while also trying to navigate around the odd swimmer or two that wandered into our lane for a few laps. Claire... Continue Reading →

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Nearly There

After writing this I realize some of it is a bit grim, but I'm going to go with it anyway as it captures the grind that goes with training for a big competition. My last hard week of training is now done and it certainly was the toughest. Over the last two months there were... Continue Reading →

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Basic Anaerobic Threshold Set

This is my go-to Anaerobic Threshold set. For anybody unfamiliar with this term: Anaerobic Threshold isn't actually using the anaerobic energy system, it's aerobic but just under where lactate is produced. So typically 85% effort and above, but under 90% effort. This kind of session will help increase your aerobic training speed and should help... Continue Reading →

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Arena Training Swim Snorkel – Review

As I mentioned in my powerbreather review, until recently the last time I wore a snorkel was as a child heading off for a day of exploring a local beach. Of course, back then we didn’t have ones made specifically for swimmers. I have seen more and more swimmers start to use them in the... Continue Reading →

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The Slog to Slovenia

The counter in the sidebar of this website shows how many days to go until the European Masters in Slovenia. While I am a little bit behind where I would like to be, I am still on track and I have started to increase my number of training sessions per week. This post will give... Continue Reading →

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Nine Month Update – The Rome Challenge

We are now 9 months into the Rome challenge and as we are only competing in Munster galas, Jia’s competitive season is over, but her training continues.   The Irish Masters Open  The Irish Masters Open was Jia’s third competition and her first long course competition. We went up the day before to get used... Continue Reading →

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Finis Z2 Gold Zoomers (fins) – review

I’ve read about people online liking these fins, but I knew nothing about them before I tried them. From looking at them I imagined they would be quite rigid like the TYR Crossblades. This changed as soon as I pushed off the wall and started to swim with them. They were surprisingly flexible and this,... Continue Reading →

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Relays are Awesome

Swimming is an individual sport, you might train and travel with others in your club, but when it comes to competing you are all on your own. In your own lane with your own black line down the middle of it, unless of course you are in an open water race, in which case you... Continue Reading →

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Second Gala – The Rome Challenge

Jia’s second competition was supposed to be the Irish Masters gala in Limerick, but a freak cold weather front caused days of snow and the gala ended up being cancelled. This meant that our home gala was her second competition, and what a competition it was. Tralee Gala Now that Jia has actual entry times... Continue Reading →

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Break Out or Break Apart

So hopefully you have read my articles on starts, turns and streamlining, and you’re working on improving yours. If you’ve done things right, you will be moving faster streamlining from the wall or the blocks than at any other time of your race. Unfortunately, physics means that you will start to slow down unless you... Continue Reading →

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February Update – The Rome Challenge

A lot has happened since our last update where we covered Jia’s first ever competition. We are now entering month number 6 of the challenge and I’m not the only person that can see the big changes. Staff members and fellow swimmers have all commented on the difference between September and now. It’s amazing what... Continue Reading →

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How do I get Faster? part 2

How do I go faster? This is a question that I see posted online, and that I get asked by people in the local pool. The answer is “its complicated”. This is the second of two articles on what you can do and what you should consider if you want to swim faster. As with... Continue Reading →

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How do I get faster? part 1

How do I go faster? This is a question that I see posted regularly online, and that I get asked by people almost every week in the local pool. The answer is “its complicated”. The Rome Challenge on this website is an example of what it takes for the casual swimmer to improve their speed,... Continue Reading →

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Start Right

There is no disputing that the start is an important part of a race, of course it’s importance and effect on the race is directly proportional to the distance being raced. Your start in a 50m event will have a far greater impact on your race than your start for a 400m event. If you... Continue Reading →

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Streamline: Why it’s important

The ability to streamline is incredibly important, but while swimming and coaching I’ve often seen it over looked or ignored by swimmers. I’ve even been guilty of it myself, so in this article I’ll try to explain why its important and why people tend to forget or ignore it. First, the obvious, a good streamline... Continue Reading →

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First Competition – The Rome Challenge

Saturday was a milestone for the Rome Challenge, it was Jia’s first ever masters swimming competition. She had never competed an any sports growing up in China, and had only ever done a few 5k fun runs and a handful of sea swims since coming to Ireland (because everyone should swim around Fenit lighthouse at... Continue Reading →

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First Steps – The Rome Challenge

Things are moving ahead with our Rome Challenge. Jia is now registered with Kingdom Masters and her entry for her first competition, the Mallow Masters, is about to go in. The first two months (we had started before the first article went up), have been all about creating a solid base. Before we started Jia... Continue Reading →

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Me, my tech suit, and I

My junior club swimming was all done in the 90s, and in Ireland back in those days it was hard to come by decent swimwear (and forget about apparel from the top brands). Most swim hats were latex and the fanciest swim suits were lycra. This typically meant you would have your “good” suit for... Continue Reading →

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Tough to get going

There are a few times throughout a season when training can get tough for a swimmer. I don’t mean physically tough, training is generally tough if you are doing it right. I’m talking about those times when you get that “wonderful” combination of training being physically and mentally tough. These times are usually, in my... Continue Reading →

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Maru Pro T Jammer – Review

This was the first racing suit I’d bought since my time as a club swimmer, I’ll be honest not a lot of thought went into picking it. I had decided to enter the European Masters and needed a FINA approved suit, but didn’t want to break the bank. Boy did I luck out, this turned... Continue Reading →

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