It was pretty tough to get out the door this morning (I think I was on about 4.5 hours of quite restless though not absolutely terrible sleep), but I am determined to make this schedule work. I like swimming enough that the thought of not using my limited pool access is enough to prod me up and out of bed, and also I couldn't flake out so early on in the training schedule! I think I will allow myself an out for a true sleepless night (less than 3 hours), but that otherwise I should just go and swim easy/swim short as needed.
Which is pretty much what I did today - not that short, but very easy. This was partly because my muscles are incredibly and amazingly sore from Monday's strength training! I guess that means that (a) it was a good workout and (b) I need to get back into strength training as a regular habit...
Main sore muscle groups are (a) the lunge muscles (b) back muscles involved in row and lateral pulldown and (c) core. Since (b) and (c) are crucial for swimming, there was not too much I could do - I really could feel my core muscles as quite sore when I pulled out from the wall in an attempt at streamline, and it was hopeless to try and swim fly, my back muscles just didn't have it in them, which is most unusual! (Usually I would have a cardiovascular limit on fly, not muscular.)
Anyway, a nice little swim - water still feels sludgy, but I think this must be because it is warmer than I am used to.
4 x 150 as 100 free, 50 stroke (back, breast, fly drill, 6-3-6 freestyle drill)
6 x 100 odds free, evens non-free (back, IM, breast)
3 x 100 freestyle drill-swim by 25 (fists, front scull, 6-3-6)
That was enough - there seemed to me to be no point even trying doing higher-intensity freestyle work, though my arms certainly felt better after I'd warmed up than they did at the start.
I like that combination of drills at the end - I think that there is much room for improvement on my catch, and that the fists drill is especially good for correcting the imbalance in my stroke whereby my left arm is much straighter and with much weaker catch/pull than my right.
I definitely have the sense more generally that though my stroke would benefit from major improvements (like, start from scratch!), there are some minor things that are truly and realistically within my power to change right now, and that would contribute a good deal to improving efficiency if not speed. Catch and high elbow (with particular emphasis on getting the form on the left side closer to that on the right, and of course rotation is important for this too), body position in water i.e. hips high in the water, feet up and close together rather than splayed apart - these are the two things that seem truly accessible and largely fixable.
There are other things that are bigger problems, like the thing that drives Jim Bolster crazy when he sees it where I lift my head up out of the water when I breathe on the right-hand side. But this, I know, is truly very difficult to modify - I know what drills to do to work on it, but it is extraordinarily difficult to keep my neck in a neutral position and not yank it up...