Friday, September 24, 2010

Enchiladas and Cheerios

It's that time of year. You know, the time of year when your husband is training so hard that he is eating a million-ga-zillion times a day and can't hardly wait long enough for you to give him a fork before he tears through last night's leftovers.

Last night, Mark came home from pracitce. I think the clock said 6:02pm. I was already home with the baby. I was taking my time. Playing, thinking about what to cook for dinner, blah, blah, blah. When Mark stumbled in the door he asked what we were having for dinner as he opened the fridge. Before I could complete my answer he had leftovers from the night before in his hand (half of a 9x13 dish of enchiladas). At that moment I realized that it was an every-man-for-himself type of night.

Mark hardly warmed the leftovers before he ate them (all of them). I had a bowl of cheerios. Dinner was 'made' and eaten by 6:13.

Mark is training hard now-really hard. He is training with the college kids, which is great, but I think it makes him feel old (physically, mentally, emotionally). They do things that he doesn't do anymore like 5,000+ yards 2.5 hours in the water. Well, I guess I should say, used to not do anymore. Now that he is training with them... he does.

After college in 2004, Mark continued to train with the college team. In 2006, however, he started training only with fellow pros (post grads and other 'old guys' like him). From Auburn, Mark moved to Charlotte for 2 years to train with David Marsh and there, too, he swam only with other pros. See, the pros get more of a say regarding what kind of training and how much training they do. Not because they are prima donnas (though some of them are-I'm not mentioning any names), but because after so many years of experience at such an elite level, these athletes know their bodies better than any coach. Coaches listen to these atheltes. Additionally, Mark has drank the sprinter/race-pace/short-bursts-of-intense-effort Kool-aid and for the last few years has really worked with his coaches to implement this type of training. From Charlotte, we moved back to Auburn and Mark began training with the pro team. The pro team, though they used the facilities and same coaching staff as the college team, trained at different times and were on a totally different program (much like the Kool-aid previously mentioned). Now, after much discussion and analysis with coaches and other trainers, Mark is back to training with the college kids.

Mark's coach is still congniscent of Mark's stage in his swimming life (especially since Mark is primarily a sprint breaststroker-and 'old' one at that), however when training with the college team, you just have to put your head down and do what your told. Why? A) To set a good example and B) because Mark has faith in his coaches' ability to guide him in the right direction--towards the fastest swims possible. He trusts that they have his best interests at heart.

So, last night after another hard, long, practice, Mark ate enough enchiladas to feed the entire wait staff at a Mexican restaraunt. I had a bowl of cheerios.

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