2022 FINA World Championships Diary by Gary Francis "Gaz" - Second Entry
One Week Down
We have pretty much completed our first week in Šamorín, and the whole team had Saturday afternoon off training with some athletes and staff taking the chance to taxi the 23kms into Bratislava to check out the Slovakian Capital. Some of us took the opportunity to relax and enjoy a peaceful afternoon!
From a preparation perspective most of the team are starting to look and feel quite good. The combination of travel and taper always tends to result in a mixed bag with good days followed by a day of struggle, but that has started to settle in the majority of cases. I ate dinner with some of our middle distance girls and they all used today as a chance to rest up, having all built their workloads through the week ending with some fast, suited sessions this morning. The sprint boys, on the other hand, are all much more rested already and the key job of the staff is to keep them from burning too much of the new found energy. The girls are certainly looking forward to the coming week as they also sharpen their tapers more and more. All the athletes have really started to get behind each other in training and every suited and timed repeat is followed and supported closely by the other swimmers.
Rest & Detail
Without doubt, the key focus for the next week will be rest and detail – take every opportunity to rest when you can, and when working focus on the details. This time next week we will be just starting the first finals session of the World Championship – and we want to be involved, so focusing on great performance habits and behaviours is really crucial from now on. Although tomorrow is generally a light training day for most of the team as the taper seems to fit well in a normal training week with Sunday as the rest day, many of the relay swimmers have opted to come to the pool to practice some changeovers which is really encouraging, as long as we keep it short and sweet.
We have some real horse lovers in the team and today was a great chance for them to enjoy the International Equestrian Competition that is taking place here at the centre’s state of the art Equestrian Centre. I’ve attached a photo of the sculpture of the horse that stands outside the gates to the centre. You can’t really tell the scale of it from the photo but it’s about 10m tall!
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