Swimmers’ development

Just through my previous post on changes to stroke achievements, I started to look at other swimmers’ profiles and realised that each swimmer is very much an individual and each swimmer developes in different stages.

Some swimmers are extremely good in all the strokes and Katinka Hosszu is a gleaming example of that, she was/is the lady with the most world records to her name, in both long and short-course pools.

Then again there is Adam Peaty, who shines through his tremendous breaststroke achievements mainly in the 50 and 100 meter long-course pools.

Adam, being good at one stroke peaked at an early age, around 21-23 and is still going strong onto the next Olympics, Commonwealth and other international competitions and Katinka Hosszu is now aged 28 and still going very strong and improving.

It is definitely worth to look at the careers of various swimmers to see just how different they all developed.

There is no strict uniformed pattern on how to grow up in the swimming world. There is a lot of personal freedom to develop in different strokes and that freedom is vital to have to get the time to enjoy the sport.

It would be terrible to have those professional pressures on a swimmer who can develop on a very individual basis through the sport and take as much time as needed to excel in any particular discipline of the sport as long as it stays on an Amateur basis.

For most younger swimmers like Madison it is advised to learn all strokes to a very good standard.

The main point is to stick to the sport and continue doing it because one just can’t lose when swimming, the overall benefits are just to great; to give up just because a season’s regional competition wasn’t so great is not a good decision.

Keep calm and carry on swimming.

 

Passion Fruit and Mango Chocolate surprise pancake

This is quite an elaborate recipe, which I suggest for days when there is no early morning pre-school training. The pancakes do not provide as much energy and are just right for a day of mostly sitting in school. WP_20180110_07_58_26_Pro_LI (2)

It’s good to have some pretty looking foods as that is uplifting and fun.

For cooking you need:

1 heavy bottom 28 cm frying pan
1 large serving plate (porcelain)
2 small prep plates
2 chopping boards
glass bowl to prepare the pancake batter

For the recipe you need:

1 fresh Mango
Passionfruit and Mango Coulis
20 gr of milk chocolate
1 large free range egg
60 grams of plain flour
100 ml of full-fat milk
a pinch of salt
squirty whipping cream

Variation, use fresh or frozen raspberries and Raspberry Coulis. (Picture to follow)

Method:

Peel half of the fresh Mango, slice off as much as you can get or want and slice into strips, put on a side-plate for later.
Chop the chocolate into small pieces and put on a side-plate for later use.
Now put your heavy pan on the stove and heat up with a couple of drops of oil.
Make the pancake batter by
mixing the free range egg with the flour, pinch of salt and then add the milk to make a smooth, runny batter.

When the pan is very hot, pour in the pancake batter to spread thinly around the pan and cook, turn after about 90 seconds and cook for another minute. Ensure the pancake doesn’t get too brown.

Slide the pancake onto the clean and empty serving plate and put the chopped chocolate over the pancake.
Now roll the pancake up tightly. (It might be a little hot, so work quickly.)
Now drizzle as much Passionfruit and Mango Coulis over the dish as you want, place the sliced fresh Mango on the plate and finish with fresh or squirty whipping cream from a can.

You can also slice the pancake into bite sized pieces prior to serving.

London Region Summer champs 2018

Qualification times were published now and they are fast. We have till 11. April 2018 to get a time.

Well, I think that if Madison continues to train at the pace and volume she does now she will be meeting the Regional and national qualifying times in the years to come.

50/50

The New Year’s Gators meet was a half/half event for Madison. Half the events were Personal Best times and the other half was just not the best.

The hundred fly was the event, which was swum the most under the Personal Best already achieved since leaving London Aquatics Performance Program. PB: 1:22:33L swam in 1:27:42L.You can see how the performance graph sharply swings upwards.

The best result was the PB in the 50 Free, now 31:07 both long and short course. The long course gives 445 and short course 418 FINA points for the same time.

Long course 50 free record currently 23:67 = 1000 FINA points
Short course 50 free record currently 22:93 = 1000 FINA points

It is good to be part of the winning best performing club and the club having taken home the Gators trophy on the day.  See tweets from @HackneyAquatics at the side of the blog.

But having now swum a couple of meets with 5sc under the PB results in some events and being sent home from the Harrow Christmas Cracker for illness is something we are not accustomed to.

I suppose that both changing club and school does take its toll. Routines have been disrupted and the whole body and mind configuration has to be reset, I suppose that would affect anybody.

Also what affects Madison’s dip in some strokes is the fact that she now receives very good breaststroke training @HackneyAquatics. Amazingly Madison achieved the 100 breast County consideration time and though been accepted as one of the slowest entrants, it is a huge step for her.

I think that if a swimmer is reasonably good in 3 strokes but not at all good in one stroke, that will affect the overall performance. Madison has been short of regional times for most of her career. I tried a lot of things but now Madison’s breaststroke times start to improve and her changing her mindset to include breaststroke will affect the other strokes in the long run for the better.

It is very important that young swimmers get good in all the strokes and it is very worth sacrificing time results for that transition period, after all at 13 any swimmer has still years of successes to come.

Of course there is a swimmer who excels and specialises in one stroke and we all know who it is, a swimmer called Adam Peaty but he is exceptionally good at breast stroke; I suppose you need to be extremely good at one stroke to make a huge impact to make it worth concentrating on that one stroke alone. It is interesting to look at the stroke profile of a swimmer to see strength and weaknesses.

Chocolate Porridge

Is an absolute favourite prior to early morning training. Get up extra early, never go to training without having had food.

Ingredients for 2 people:

1/2 litre of full-fat milk
1 cup (not full to the brim) of whole organic, rolled oats,
20 grams + – ~1 row of chocolate, per plate, 40gr in total
some berries.

Method:

Soak the milk and the oats overnight in a pot with a lid on, if its warm keep in fridge overnight, that will greatly reduce the cooking time. whole oats have a better bite than the quick cook soft oats.

Prepare the plates, use soup plates and put some berries, e.g. frozen mixed etc and 20 grams of chocolate in each plate.

The porridge should be ready after about 10 minutes of cooking, stir occasionally. Then put the thick, hot porridge over the chocolate and the berries, leaving the chocolate to melt and berries to defrost.

Put plates on the table and then stir the content, making a very delicious, chocolate, fruity porridge, that does not need any sugar. It will be eaten in 5 minutes max.

See my recipe page for more ideas.

Chocolate milk

is the ideal after training recovery drink. I make my own without extra sugar and any other additives, using a few simple ingredients.

  1. Make a chocolate ganache.
    150ml double cream
    150 gram of milk chocolate
    Bring double cream to nearly boil, break chocolate into small pieces and put into heatproof bowl, preferably a glass bowl. Pour the hot double cream over the chocolate pieces. Stir the chocolate and milk until the chocolate is dissolved. Put mix into container and keep cool in the fridge until needed*.
  2. Make the chocolate milk.
    400ml of full-fat whole milk
    2 table spoons of the chocolate ganache.
    Put into a pot over a low heat and stir until dissolved, do not boil. Then pour into your drinking container and put in fridge to cool. Consume on the same day or within 24 hours.

*The ganache should last around 1 week in the fridge.

See my other recipes for more ideas.

Happy, happy, happy, happy New Year 2018

Happy New Year 2018
Happy New Year 2018

The 4 Happies are the 4 most important parts of a swimmer’s life.

  1. Happy. Happy 2018. For the millennials, 2018 is almost like a ‘coming of age’ year.
  2. Happy. Happy club. As long as you feel you can progress and develop your swimming skills you are in a good club. If a club is part of the ‘Advanced Coaching Scheme’ even better.
  3. Happy. Happy home. Make sure you always got someone available to bring you swimming (if you are not old enough to go by yourself) and your home sharers support your swimming.
  4. Happy. Happy school. Your school is part of the Sport England support network and supports your swimming as a main sport.