When I swam we trudged through the snow 3 miles back and forth from practice wearing newspapers on our feet to keep them dry. OK…maybe I embellish…but I did walk home 3 miles from a swim practice at 9 years old because the coach told me to do a 200 for warm-up. I thought it was too far! I didn’t understand why? And because ‘I told you so’ wasn’t a good enough reason.
Swimming, really any well crafted story, follows a story arc similar to The Goonies. So for those of you daunted by (or empowered by) the word ‘periodization’, let me dispel any and all witchcraft or EasternBloc pseudo-science from Rocky 4. Periodization is a carefully architected athletic experience as foretold by artisan coaches equipped with the tools of science and technology, driven by a reverse-engineered vision of what is yet to be, and communicated eloquently to all relevant audiences. The best transcend genres and stereotypes to suspend disbelief and resonate so clearly that they need not be understood completely, only embarked upon and enjoyed by all.
Summer ’14 a group of SwimMAC Team Elite athletes began work on a unique story. And while they did not have to do the truffle shuffle before practice began, many would likely tell you that reading the whiteboard felt similar. Practice would have a unique circuit based structure integrating a combined warmup, individualized IKKOS/ resistance/assistance and an event/stroke specific complimentary set.
A single session would always feel familiar to an athlete. It lacked complexity while
remaining sufficiently complicated to challenge. While subsequent weeks changed the rythm slightly when the existing pattern became too similar to facilitate continued growth. The underlying response created complexity while remaining compact.
9 weeks of amazing training flowed out like Chunk’s encapsulated monologue…
I encourage you to find your own story. Work on your craft. And share it with others. More next week on how we continue to edit and refine our approach at IKKOS to help you do just that.