We had an exciting weekend in Atlanta at Duel in the Pool, sponsored by Mutual of Omaha (the great company that also takes good care of Mark). This was Mark's 4th appearance at Duel in the Pool. It has taken him to LA (2005), Australia (2007), Manchester (2009-2 weeks after Annabelle was born), and back to good ol' Hotlanta (2011). It is a fun meet for the athletes because the format is that of a college duel meet. Short and sweet (perfect for swim wives with 2-year olds).
The meet kicked off on Friday night at 7pm. There were some great swims-records were broken. This meet, and any other meet this time of year, is always a little quirky. Some athletes are fully shaved and tapered, others are a little rested, and some are in the midst of getting their butts kicked in practice. So, needless to say there is a wide range of performances. Mark is came down in his training a little bit this week, but was not shaved and tapered. So, rather than really compare himself to others, he had to focus on himself and make comparisons to previous years and other in-season swims.
This meet was also short course meters--which totally throws me off. Typically Mark swims long course (50m long) meters. College swimming is short course yards. So, when Mark swam others spectators would look at me and say, "Was that a good swim?" Heck if I know... I just look to Mark's face. Blank stare=not a good swim... a hint of emotion or life=decent swim... fist pump and flexing of the biceps (I've only seen this once)=swim of a lifetime.
I got a hint of life after both races (100m breaststroke and 200m breaststroke), so I deduced that both swims were decent.
Mark did get DQ'd in the 200 breast. Bummer. Sad, really, because after talking with Mark's father (who remembers each of Mark's swims to the 100th of a second), it was really a pretty solid swim for Mark. Why the DQ? Something about not separating his hands before he kicked on the pull out.
All in all it was a successful weekend. Saw some old friends (a quick shout out to Aunt Lala, Dr. Ross and Baby Dash!), watched some good racing, and had fun at our slumber party with fellow swim wife, Julianne McGill.
Thanks, again, Mutual of Omaha... you ROCK!