Weekly Newsletter

Upcoming meets:

December 7-11 Gatineau (15 swimmers)

Psych sheets and results can be found at: Results will not be on Meet Mobile.

December 15/16 Family Guardian Insurance Meet hosted by the Barracuda Swim Club

We are adjusting this meet to a 2 day – 2 session meet. We look forward to another excellent competition for our swimmers.

The Friday night session will have a 4:30 p.m. warm up and 6:00 p.m. start while Saturday will have a 7:30 warm up and 9:00 a.m. start.

The Barracuda Swim Club has a well-deserved reputation for running excellent meets. Our volunteers are the most important part of this. Please plan to help out timing, at the Cuda Café or with other tasks at the meet. The best seat in the house is right on deck so plan to get close to the action.

We need the usual donations/assistance for the Cuda Café (our concession stand) – Powerade, juice, Coke and other sodas, Dasani water, hot patties (beef and chicken), macaroni, nachos, donuts and/or cash donations. Thank you.

Christmas Schedule:

Darts, Neons and Tigers will swim their regular schedule until (and including) Wednesday, December 20th. These swimmers will be off for two weeks and return to their regular schedule on Wednesday, January 3, 2018.

Flying and Dragon Fish will have regular practices until Friday, December 22nd. Off December 23, 24, 25, and 26. One a day practices will be offered December 27-31. Off January 1st and 2nd. Back into regular scheduling on January 3, 2018. 

Practices for Dragon, Flying and Away swimmers on December 27, 28, 29, 30 and 31st will be at Queen’s College pool. We will run practices from 6:00 – 7:30 a.m. and from 7:30 – 9:00 a.m. to accommodate family and work schedules. Swimmers please plan to be at one of these sessions each day that week.

News from the deck:

Orca meet highlights:

1. Thanks to all our parents who pitched in to make the meet run for all the swimmers. Our volunteers are the backbone of our sport – THANK YOU. ?@

2. First time swims in the 400 free and 200 IM for many of our youngest swimmers and excellent performances – keep it up.

3. Heard on deck: "What a beautiful day" (Coach Jeff) = "Wow, it is cold tonight" (just about everyone else).

4. Hard work was rewarded for some of our most committed swimmers from the senior groups. Great to see. Let’s keep it rolling this weekend.

Dragon and Flying Fish swimmers not traveling this week – your schedule – Thursday morning 5:45 – 7:00 a.m. at Queen’s; Thursday afternoon 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. at Queen’s; Friday afternoon 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. at BKKAC; Saturday morning 9:00 – 10:00 a.m. at Queen’s. Monday 6:00 – 7:00 at Queen’s. Tuesday morning, we return to normal schedule.

Dragon and Flying Fish swimmers – please have skipping rope in your equipment bags at all practices. We will be using them daily in our dryland warm ups.

Team Christmas Party – Friday, December 22nd at 7:00 p.m. Party will be at the Longley residence. Further details will be distributed by email as the date approaches.

News from our Away Swimmers:

I missed mentioning that Randy Paul was back for a couple of sessions last week. Randy’s racing schedule starts in Tennessee this week and we will be looking for excellent results from him this year.

Swim Tip:

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. ~ Aristotle

This very old axiom is an excellent reminder in a few ways. We can look at the opportunities, responsibilities and outcomes in all our lives and look for balance in finding a way to meet these things.

In simple terms, a quote like this shows that if you work on a single skill e.g., not breathing on the first stroke off a turn, you will be likely to model that behavior in a competitive situation. If you only try to "turn on" your good habits under the pressure of a race you are unlikely to be able to sustain it.

In more complex terms, a quote like this applies to all areas of our life. If you find it easy to make excuses about why you cannot attend practice, this will become a habit and can extend into other areas of your life.

Swimming is a technical sport before anything else. The drag of the water on the body is the single biggest factor restricting the speed of the swimmer and a huge amount of time and effort is spent shaping our body and strokes to maximize the streamlined shape so that we will move through the water most quickly.

There are several positive HABITS that we can practice in the pool: (1) Stroke counting is a great way to monitor efficiency in your strokes. All swimmers will help themselves by knowing their stroke counts for all the different strokes and under different intensities; (2) Breathing can change the shape of the body dramatically and may slow forward momentum. Controlling head movements, restricting breaths and monitoring the effects of head movements on other parts of the body are all things that coaches give feedback on and swimmers can pay particular attention to.

(3) Time management and dedication to leading the life of an athlete are areas where good habits can be built. Academic calendars and swim schedules are generally published at the start of each season. Although there may be changes to the schedules throughout the year, we know pretty well, what the demands on our time will be. Planning ahead, getting into routine with studying and practicing will allow a swimmer to maintain their routine through stressful times like exams.

Research has consistently shown that exercise will assist people with their studies. It helps with knowledge retention, stress management, sleeping properly and eating regularly. Swimmers have long been some of the best student-athletes because of their time management, goal setting and dedication to task. The CDC states, "…physical activity can have an impact on cognitive skills and attitudes and academic behavior, all of which are important components of improved academic performance. These include enhanced concentration and attention as well as improved classroom behavior."

Making a commitment to training and racing with an eye on achieving their stated goals will help swimmers. Having a goal can drive many of the actions we take along the way. International level swimmers make some sacrifices to gain greater opportunities athletically. We can’t always focus on the short term and need to take a longer view when assessing the value of good nutritional habits, practicing mental skills, missing a party to make sure you get to Saturday morning workout. The sooner you begin forming good habits the more likely you are to be able to maintain them.

As we head into the Christmas break, a busy time for all of us, families are encouraged to plan for their swimmers to make workouts, improve our daily habits and start to think about making a resolution to really dedicate ourselves to our goals in the New Year.

Nutrition Tip:

Water regulates your body temperature and lubricates your joints. It helps transport nutrients to help give you energy and keep you healthy. If you are not hydrated, your body cannot perform at its highest level. You may feel tired, have muscle cramps, dizziness and other serious problems. (Hydration for Athletes,

The American College of Sports Medicine notes that you can assess your level of hydration by examining urine output and color. It should be frequent and pale yellow. Infrequent urination and dark yellow urine indicates dehydration.

For healthy hydration, it helps to have a water bottle. Aim for 17-20 ounces of water a couple of hours before exercise. Drink 8 ounces 20-30 minutes before you start practice. During practice, drink 7-10 ounces for every 10-20 minutes of exercise. For cool down, drink 8 ounces within 30 minutes after workout.

For those traveling to Canada this week please bring a water bottle with you. Bring an empty bottle through airport security and then fill it once you are screened and in the departure lounge. Drink water while waiting for the flight and during the flight. This will do two things: (1) you will remain hydrated in a somewhat dry environment and (2) you will need to use the "loo" meaning you will get up and move (keep your legs loose) during the flight. The colder air in Canada holds far less water. Humidity is lower and you will feel it if you are not rehydrating continuously. 

This Week’s Recipe:

Strawberry Watermelon Rehydrating Smoothie

Research has shown that watermelon can relieve muscle soreness, strawberries provide carbohydrates to restore energy, cucumbers hydrate and coconut water provides electrolytes. Add protein powder to help heal hard working muscles.

The Ingredients:

1 cup watermelon

¼ cup strawberries

½ cucumber

½ serving Vanilla, plant-based protein powder

½ cup pure, unsweetened coconut water

4 ice-cubes

The Recipe:

Add all ingredients to the blender, blend until smooth and Enjoy.

Request for input – I have heard from a few parents and swimmers who have enjoyed some of the information in the newsletters. If there are specific topics that you feel we could cover or information that you need please let me know and we will include it in future editions.