MSV State Long Course Recap
A recent addition to the Orca Pod, Brendan MacDonald, decided to try competing for the first time at the MSV State Long Course Championships. Brendan was kind enough to shares his experiences as a first time competitor.
When I joined the Nunawading Orcas Masters Swimming Club this year I had no ambitions of competing. My intensions were to improve my fitness and get some coaching to improve my technique and lap times. In addition, after training on my own for many years I thought it would be more enjoyable to train with a group and a great way to push myself a bit further during training.
My main fear about entering the MSV Long Course Championships as a beginner was that I did not want to embarrass myself by finishing last. However, club members reassured me that each event was sorted by entry times so that you swim against other swimmers of a similar ability. My other fear was loosing my goggles on dive starts. I had only done a few dive starts in training and they did not go well. So a club member offered to meet me at the pool for an extra training session to give me some tips on dive starts which increased my confidence.
So with the encouragement of other club members I entered the 50m, 100m, 200m freestyle events and the relay in the MSV Long Course Championships. I was a little nervous but set no expectations of myself on the day, other than to do my best, which helped me relax in my swims and focus on my stroke.
The first event of the day was the 50m freestyle. I was pleased to know that I would be competing with a fellow swimmer from the Orcas who was another first-timer to competition swimming. It was also reassuring to see our coach poolside at the start of the race. The first event was a perfect start to the day. I pulled off the dive, won the event, and swam a great time (for me anyway). It was especially encouraging to hear the cheers of the fellow club members. As such, I gained a lot of confidence from completing my first event.
The remainder of the day was a really positive experience. I continued to hold my dives and I swam some great times in the 50m, 100m, and 200m freestyle taking 6 seconds off my 50m, 7 seconds off my 100m, and 12 seconds off my 200m off my PB from time trials in training. When I started swimming with the Orcas I would never have imagined swimming such times were possible.
My first swim meet was a wonderful experience, I was amazed to swim so fast, and it was great to feel a part of the team which makes me want to strive for more. I want to thank our coach and fellow Orcas for all their encouragement and support.
And a Second time for a Fast Orca
In breaking news, our resident Alcatraz swimmer Pablo Pizzuto, this week received a special invitation as a result for being an ‘exceptionally fast’ swimmer in his Swim With The Centurions at Alcatraz last year. The invitation gives him ‘elite’ status with discounted entry, a spot on the ‘elite’ boat and 5 minute earlier start on all the other swimmers.