Summer training timetable

The last training sessions for Dev Squads 1,2, & 3, Age Group Squads 1 & 2 and Club Training Group before the club splits for summer are as follows:

Dev 3: Either Sunday 29th or Mon 30th June (Depending on which session you normally attend)

Dev.2: Either Sunday 29th or Mon 30th June (Depending on which session you normally attend)

Dev.1: Sunday 29th June

Age Group Squad 2: Monday 30th June pm

Age Group Squad 1: Monday 30th June am

Club Training Squad: Sunday 29th June


(Be on poolside 10mins before start for loosening/Warm Up or Core Stability)

Training at Leisureplex unless otherwise stated

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Swim Ulster Summer Meet results

Well done to all the club swimmers who competed at the Swim Ulster summer meet last weekend

Click on the link below to find the results

Results SU Summer Meet 2014

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6 Things Holding You Back from Swimming Success

They make it look so easy. So simple. Like you could just reach out and with your fingertips graze the stars.

Any time swimming makes one of its few and far between appearances on television, along with it appears the glossy, over produced bios of our sport’s top athletes. The vignettes where we learn more about how the swimmer came up, their family, and how they were always destined to be champions.

What these features generally do not show is the grind. The struggle. The frequent doubt and second-guessing that comes with chasing down greatness. They forget to show that for each of these athletes, all the way up to Michael Phelps, they were subject to the same difficulties that befall the rest of us.

Whatever your goals, here are six common pitfalls that swimmers fall into while chasing their own version of swimming success:

1. Not dreaming big enough.

There are a heap of reasons why so many swimmers don’t dream big enough. People they trust or who are in authority positions have derided their ambitions. They feel that their surroundings (pool, coach, team, etc) aren’t in line with their goals. The paralysing thought of a failure as grand as your ambitions.

Whatever the case may be for you, at the end of the day clear your mind and ask yourself with complete sincerity: Why not you? Why not now?

2. You chronically plan.

You’re a master of goal setting, outlining elaborate, beautifully detailed goals. You go so far as to construct a carefully thought out goal plan, listing all of the things you need to do to achieve said goal. You write out the goal, create a list of affirmations, even go out and buy a log book as well as an app so that you can track, measure and analyze your progress.

You do everything except acting on it. For some that first step is such an overwhelming commitment that it terrifies them from taking it. Combat this by making it small, non-newsworthy, and something you can do with complete immediacy. (No waiting!)

3. You’re dependent on talent for swimming success instead of hard work.

We have all swum against kids who were designated as mega-talents. They appeared to have the sport on a string. The most striking examples of these are the kids who have the early growth spurt in addition to an easy knack for the sport.

Talent and size will only take you so far. Janet Evans, legendary American distance swimmer from the late 1980’s and early 1990’s is a perfect example. A shade over five feet, she had an unconventional stroke, but otherworldly work ethic, routinely crushing 10,000m workouts.

Don’t fall for the trap of believing that talent or genetics will get you to the next level.

4. You are expecting instant results.

I know how frustrating it can be when things don’t fall into place quickly enough or as quickly as you planned they would. It’s all the more infuriating when you did everything properly; your nutrition was spot-on, you attended every practice, you even devoted an extra fifteen minutes after each workout to do bonus core work. And yet, you still aren’t seeing results fast enough.

Your first instinct will be to throw in the towel. After all, the process isn’t working, right? Wrong. The process is working. You are improving; and success in the pool is never an overnight deal. Keep hammering at it, and realize that even though results aren’t piling up as quickly as you’d like, you are still improving.

5. Not trusting the process.

Similar to how we seek instant results, our head starts to cook up all sorts of negative stuff when we view things as not going as anticipated. We imagine that our natural speed has capped out. That we aren’t built to swim fast. That we aren’t deserving to swim at an elite level.

When these thoughts happen we tend to look for a way out, and this generally uncludes switching tack mid-course. Bailing pre-maturely doesn’t allow you the opportunity to allow the process to run its course, which means you will never know whether you would have succeeded had you stayed on track.

Understand that doubt is inevitable in moments of struggle, but don’t allow panic to derail your plan.

6. Comparing yourself to others.

I still do this on occasion, and I want to punch myself in the face each time I do because it’s utterly pointless to compare, measure and stack and serves nothing.

Stop comparing yourself and your swimming to those around you. Your swimming is completely and unequivocally yours. The splits the kid in the lane next to you might seem other worldly, but don’t let them discourage you.

Rather, follow your own path, direct all your energy inwards to improve every facet of your swimming you can, and ignore the sideshow.

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Summer skills camps for younger swimmers

Swim Ulster are proud to announce two new initiatives intended to help aid the development of young swimmers. The flyers for these initiatives can be found by following the links below.

 These camps are a week long opportunity for younger swimmers to develop their skills base and training etiquette prior to the start of the new season. These are open to any club swimmer from across the province whether residing in the area or there on holiday.

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Training Cancellation for NSS, NJS, AG1 and Dev 1 squads Thursday 26th June 2014

The club will be running an end of season gala on Thursday 26th June from 4:45-7:15pm.

Those squads competing in the gala will be notified by their squad coach

As a result, training for NSQ, NJS, Development Squad 1 & AG1 Squad will be cancelled.

Club Training Group will train be as normal from 7:15-8:15pm. 

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Volunteers needed to assist at Triathlon event

Lisburn City Council have requested volunteers to marshal swimming at this years Triathlon

Date: Sunday 20th July 2014

Time: 8.30am-1.00pm

Venue: Lagan Valley Leisure Plex

Please contact Liza Watson if your are available


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Cancellation of morning session Saturday 21st June at LVLP

Due to the Swim Ulster Novice Gala being held in Lisburn this Saturday, there will be no morning swim session for any squads in Lisburn.

Sorry for any inconvenience caused which is beyond our control

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6 Things to Remember When the Last Thing You Want to Do is Swim

We all have those mornings when we pretend we don’t hear the alarm clock go off. Or we conjure a long and detailed list of potential excuses we can issue to get out of the main set. Maybe the lack of progress towards our long term goals has us dizzy with stress and panic, to the point that quitting seems like the only viable option. Perhaps we are neck deep in stress from our significant other, school work, or the demands of work and family are pulling us in a zillion different directions.

In the midst of those situations the last thing we want to do is to suit up and head down to the pool and bang out a heavy mid-season set. The good news is this – not only does everyone else also have these days, but having these moments of overwhelming doubt, insecurity and abject stress are natural. Yup, it’s normal.

Here are 6 things to think about the next time you are about struggling with your desire to head back to the pool–

1. Learn to be okay with discomfort.

If life provided us with no discomfort, ever, it would be fantastic, wouldn’t it? Umm, nope. No discomfort = nothing worthwhile ever being achieved. If we did what our fleeting heart desired every second of the day we would live lives of bland, uninspiring dullness. The grind is part of the process, a necessary ingredient in your home-made batch of kickass. Accepting it, and realizing that it is simply part of the overall process means that you can stop fighting it, which burns up valuable energy and focus.

2. Commit to 5 minutes. Start small and commit to nothing more at first.

How many times have you gone to the pool, tired and achey, stressed out, and stared blankly at the set on the chalkboard with fatigued incredulity. To argue or to express disappointment at the daunting set ahead of you would simply require too much energy. But then you get in the water. Take a few strokes. Than take a few more. The cobwebs start to shake loose, blood starts to flow to your muscles, and you start getting into a rhythm in a few short minutes. Take things a couple minutes at a time, and no more.

3. Let go of your best case scenarios.

How often have you psyched yourself out because you felt there was no way you could live up to your desired or best-case result? If the fear of not achieving your best-case scenario was removed, you could focus on the process again, instead of busying yourself fretting over whether or not you are going to achieve the final result you want. This goes back to the previous point of taking things one step at a time; instead of placing focus and energy on results, zero in on only what is in front of you.

4. Stop thinking about your season end goals as one big thing.

This is our brain’s default way of thinking; it considers the goal as one, huge step. Thinking this way makes it so massive, so scary, so intimidating that we lock into the most comfortable thing that comes to mind – procrastinating. Your goals are achieved stroke-by-stroke, yard-by-yard, practice-by-practice. If the shadow of your season end goal seems to be never-ending, make a series of smaller, shorter goals. Instead of considering that massive goal time at the end, focus on the steps, one by one. This makes the process something a lot less intimidating, and by amassing a steady and consistent pile of small wins will you chip away at the big goal lurking in the corner.

5. Be mindful of feeling bad about feeling bad.

We expect ourselves to feel 100% ready to go, 100% of the time. This isn’t realistic. There are times where you are going to feel out of sorts no matter how much you sleep, how great you eat, or how much you warm-up. Beating yourself up over it won’t help you get back on track, and for many swimmers feeling crappy about feeling crappy compounds the initial problem (this point is the matryoshka doll of mental training skills). Accept that you feel off and give yourself some space mentally. Some days we will feel off, and this is okay. By embracing it, instead of fighting it at every turn – and getting frustrated and discouraged when you can’t get back to 100% soon enough – it slowly dissipates on its own.

6. Adopt a posture of gratitude.

This might feel a little contrived at first, but practicing genuine gratitude is one of the greatest additions you can make to your life. Numerous studies have shown that keeping a small gratitude journal (for example, a daily ì5 things I am grateful forî checklist) increased long term health and happiness by 10%. By taking some time out of your day to remember what is important to you it helps to bring your energy and brain back into focus, and giving you an extra step the next time you head to the pool.

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How to Develop a Legendary Work Ethic for Swimmers

With every major success story, whether it is swimming, other sports, business or even the arts, a common thread between high performers in each field is that they have a legendary work ethic. It’s one of the prerequisites of success that we like to think we are exempt from, or can avoid, but it’s there, waiting patiently for us to seize it.

Ryan Lochte, despite the lazy surfer boy image he portrays, is one of the most conditioned swimmers in the world. Michael Phelps didn’t take a day off from the pool for nearly 5 years in his preparation for Beijing. We can talk all day long about their physical gifts, but it is their insane work ethic that got them to the upper echelons of the sport.

The good news is that having a killer work ethic isn’t limited by genetics. It’s something that you can develop for your own swimming goals. Here are 5 simple tips for developing a legendary work ethic:

1. Success requires hard work. Period. 

I’ll admit it. There are still times that I think to myself that achieving what I want won’t require hard work. For a few moments I’ll buy into the hype that I am different, that I am unique, that I will be the one to achieve extraordinary things by wishing for it. This sense of entitlement clears eventually, and the realization that hard work is an integral part of the success equation comes back.

First step is accepting that hard work is going to be a critical and necessary ingredient in your warm, delicious stew of success. Bypass the hype machine and understand that nothing worth achieving is done without hard work. Nothing.

2. Get serious about accepting responsibility for your swimming.

Here is the reality: no one is going to come and succeed for you. Your coach, your parents and your teammates might give you token pieces of motivation on occasion, but ultimately what you get out of your swimming rests on you.

No one else is going to put the work in for you. You want improvement, growth and forward momentum with your swimming, and this doesn’t happen by playing the blame game or by making excuses. If you are going to be the one to indulge in the awesome results, you are going to have to be the one to shoulder the work required.

3. Be about it.

Look, everybody wants big things from their swimming. No one looks in the mirror and thinks, ìHey, I’m going to go to the pool today, swim my brains out for a couple hours, and hope that I place last at state champs next month.î

Everybody wants it, and many are willing to talk about it, but few are willing to walk the walk. It’s great to have big plans for your swimming, but without the action to back it up, those goals are just wishful thinking.

Stop talking about being the awesome swimmer you want to be and get to it.

4. Do what you can with what you have.

Conditions will never be ideal. You won’t always have the best facility, the best training grounds, the best equipment, and so on. Waiting on conditions to be perfect is a never-ending proposition. It’s simply a crutch, a delaying tactic keeping you from making the most of what you have in front of you.

On days where you look around and begin thinking about the facilities that others probably have, the advantages others must be enjoying, just think about all those who have succeeded in spite of their training circumstances. No matter what you have, someone out there is making do with worse.

What you have is not as important as the work you are willing to do with it.

5. Develop action triggers.

There’ll be those moments when we are engaged in the mental back-and-forth over whether or not we should act, whether or not to dump all of our energy into the set at hand.

Remove this banter by creating a set of cues, or a trigger for yourself to get yourself ìin the zone.î This doesn’t have to be overly simple. I’d suggest combining a physical action with a mantra or quick statement. The key is to leap into action right away so that the trigger becomes hardwired as a kick-starter for hard work. Here are a couple examples:

Clench your fists three times and say to yourself, ìEngage!î

Slap your chest and tell yourself, ìGo time!î

Jump up and down three times, tap your head, and exclaim, ìOn my signal, unleash hell!î

You get the idea. The trigger can be as subtle or as extravagant as you want. Simply make sure that you use it and always follow it with action. Use it even when you don’t need it to make the association of the trigger even stronger.

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Commonwealth Games 2014

Congratulations to Club swimmers, Rachel Bethel and Aileen Reid and former swimmer, Russell White who will represent Northern Ireland at the upcoming Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Well done to coaches too who have supported the swimmers throughout the season. The Club is proud of all your achievements and wish you the very best of luck at Glasgow 2014.

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