Saturday, October 09, 2010

4th annual "Hour of Power" is in the record books!

Arizona masters swimmers complete 1500 yard fly set.

Scottsdale, AZ, October 9.

Submitted by Swimming World Intern: Pole Boy

It was a beautiful fall morning at the Cactus Pool Aquatic center in Scottsdale, Arizona. At 7:00am a small group of swimmers arrived at the outdoor pool with the pleasant morning temps in the mid 60's. Water temp was estimated to be about 83 degrees.

This was no ordinary Saturday morning workout for this small band of renegades as they prepared for the fifth annual "Hour of Power" swim. The only question in everyone's mind was, "will I be able to complete the swim this year".

At 7:16 after the group had completed a light warm-up, the "Hour of Power" began.

It might be helpful to explain what the "Hour of Power" is. It is a pretty simple single set that takes exactly one hour to complete.

60 x 25yds Fly on a 1:00 interval...and each 25 is a no breather.

After each group of 10 swims, one of the participants jumps up on the blocks to sing their college, high school, or elementary school fight song before the group begins the next swim. Since 4 or 5 of the 7 swimmers participating in this year's event were in their mid 50's remembering a school fight song is sometimes a big challenge as well. One swimmer who grew up in Illinois could only remember the fight song for the Chicago Bears so he sang that.

The singing and banter that takes place between each swim is an important part of the tradition and a good laugh enjoyed by the group can have a negative impact on a person's oxygen debt going into the next swim.

Another tradition for the Hour of Power is that most of the swimmers who participate prefer to go by their nick names such as Bo-Peep, 612, Booze Bo, Dave Bo, Rico Suave, or The King. This reporter was not able to determine the real names of any of the swimmers in this year's event.

After the completion of the Hour of Power, by all 7 swimmers who started the set, a few of the participants decided to top off the workout with a 50 underwater swim.

Then it was time for handshakes all around, a quick shave and a shower, then off on their separate ways for another beautiful Arizona weekend.


Monday, October 04, 2010

Oct 2 2010 San Diego and Miramar Air Show Visit

Fran and I made a really short 36 hour visit to San Diego over the weekend ... it may not seem long but it gave a us a tastes of several things that left us wanting to go back for more!

I had met a stunt pilot in the past year and in our conversations he mentioned that if I was interested he would get me invited to a tent along the runway at the Miramar Airshow. I told him "Of course" I was interested not believing that it would actually happen. But low and behold about a month ago I got an email asking if I was still interested and next thing I knew I had tickets allowing us to sit close enough to the runway to feel the heat from the pyrotechnics they set off on the runways.

We took the first flight over on Saturday and drove right to the airfield. Fran was gracious but airshows are not her favorite thing to do (she went with me in Dayton too in 1994) and she held up well in the hot sunny conditions. We got to see the Blue Angels, a F-22 Raptor (very very cool), the Canadian Precision Flying team and many many other aircraft, helicopters and tanks. The Marines at Miramar are VERY proud of their toys (oops I mean equipment).

After the airshow we went home for a quick shower and a short nap then walked over to 5th Avenue where we had a choice of many wonderful looking restaurants. Fran took a chance and used "Hotwire" to get us a hotel room for a very reasonable rate in downtown San Diego. The Indigo Hotel is one block north of PetCo Park and is located on the 500 block of 9th Avenue. It is quite a modern hotel (2 years old) and with a good view of the baseball field and easy walking distance of everything in the Gaslamp District.

We had walked quite a bit at the airshow so we just walked over for dinner and had a nice meal at a sidewalk cafe. It was quite an amazing people watching experience sitting there eating dinner ... young and old, every color and race you could imagine, from the incredibly dressed up to the very casual, and from lots of clothing to ... not much clothing.

The next morning we took a walk along the Bay past the convention center along the walking path. After a few photos we had breakfast overlooking the harbor filled up with some pretty impressive boats ... even a few with addresses from Scottsdale and Phoenix.