Friday, March 27, 2009
(Tony, behind, being paced by Andrea in yellow cap in front.)
In 15 hours 22 minutes. I'm continuing to extrapolate a time around 10:15 p.m. - less than an hour from now!
After a long break, he swam the 1 km in one go, finishing at 15:22. He's done 90% of the distance, and has 4.2 km left. I'm extrapolating a finish at 10:34 p.m. His stroke looks good (see video in previous post), he only had half a cookie between km 37 and 38. Rhonda says he's swimming on guts because he has nothing else in him.
You can see that his stroke is much better than 4 km ago.
UPDATE: In response to a question, yes, Tony is in lane 2, and he's drafting. He's been drafting most of the day.
In 14:48. He's moving along. There's some thought (well, Dave thinks) that Tony may swim better doing 8:xx 500s. He's also taking 15 seconds' rest between 250s.
Anyway, he's now 88% in, and has only 5.2 km to go. I'm continuing to extrapolate a finish at 10:30 p.m.
For whatever cause, Tony is now a rocket. He finished km 36 in 21 min total. His stroke count has dropped to 17. He took barely 90 seconds' break, and he's into km 37. 6.2 km to go!
Sorry for the delay - been an eventful hour.
Tony hit 35 km at 13:22, and I extrapolated a 10:20 p.m. finish. But he started drinking defizzed Coke, and seemed to be doing better. He went to the washroom twice, and had a hit of oxygen, and began negotiating - not a bad thing here. If he swims 1 km/h he can finish ...
Anyway, at 7 p.m. PDT he was at 35.9 km, only 1oo m down. He hit 36 km at 14:01, so I'm now extrapolating 17:51. Right or wrong, I detect a change in his attitude. I didn't capture it with the camera, but we saw the old Tony grin, and he even had a "groupie" come up to him. :-)
We all applauded as he struck out again. And after a very brief break, he's swimming again.
Tony threw up - probably a good thing - declined a hit of oxygen from the staff, and is back in the water after nearly 20 minutes between 500s. He's asked for Pringles and chicken broth, though, which is probably on the right path to getting some food into him.
The probably means no more day-old Wendy's chicken fingers, which is surely a good thing.
Tony now needs to dig deep into his suitcase of courage. He has four hours of suffering, mental & physical, ahead of him.
Tony's on his 33.5-km break. He's definitely feeling low. At 33.25 km he stopped and I wondered if he was going to quit. When I passed on Lee C.'s message he was a bit snarly (well, for Tony).
Anna said Rhonda should tell him he's at the Bear - an in-joke re IM Canada.
In terms of adherence to plan, he's right on schedule now.
Tony hasn't been eating the PowerBar Blasts he loves for a few hours. Rhonda's concerned, quite rightly, that he's not eating enough, and that's behind his low spirits.
I'll admit that I don't know how to set up blog polls, so I'll have to ask you post a comment or send me an e-mail.
The background is that Tony does the vacuuming on Saturdays.
The question is: Does swimming a marathon today excuse Tony from vacuuming tomorrow?
Someone asked what he's eating. Mostly, he's drinking Gatorade and eating, gulp, Wendy's chicken fingers from the night before (as shown in the picture).
I forgot to note that at 32 km he was still 12 minutes ahead of schedule. He'd done 76% of the total distance.
(Tony with "his" towel.)
Tony hit 32 km at 12:12 (5:13 p.m. PDT). Pretty amazing to be swimming for over 12 hours. I had the BlackBerry video camera going, but when Rhonda asked if he wanted to know how far he'd gone, he said No. He doesn't want to know how far he's gone until he's done.
He now has "only" 12.2 km to go. Rhonda is thinking he can do 2 km/h, so that'll have him finish about 10:30 p.m., about 26 minutes later than his plan.
I'll admit he's looking a bit dispirited to me, or perhaps a bit angry. But he's pushing on. An interesting point his brother Dave made was that he'll soon be in Ironman territory. At 17:30 total time he'll have spent far longer swimming than he's ever done anything endurance-wise.
He's still being escorted by the Hyack teenagers.
(Tony's friend Barb & SO Rhonda)
Tony was at 31.4 km at 5 p.m. That puts him 400 m ahead of plan; I now predict that he'll open up a gap now. He's swimming slightly more than 2500 m/h, and if he can get his digestive issues under control he'll be, er, swimming. :-s
Tony took a 13- or 14-minute break after 30 km, trying to get things going in washroom, but he's still hitting slightly over 9 minutes for every 500, so that puts him pretty much on track or slightly ahead of sched.
I was asked about his rash - it does look bad, but hasn't looked worse in a few hours. He's covering both it and his left cheek with BodyGlide frequently.
Finally, I was asked about why I was here. Well, it's because Tony has been awfully helpful and gracious to me in my Ironman quest, and two or three months ago he was in a bit of a low spot about this marathon swim & I decided my best "donation" (as well as a money donation I had made) would be to come out from Toronto and help. So I flew out yesterday, I'm staying in a local hotel, and I'll fly back late tomorrow morning. (I'm already close to my Toronto bed time; I won't be as tired as Tony, but I'll be beat tomorrow!) Thanks for asking!
Tony's coming up to 30.5 km. I can't express how exciting this is.
(Tony's brother Dave, Dave's wife Andrea, & Tony & Dave's mother Anna)
Tony hit 29 km at 10:58, and took his break, so that's where he was at 4 p.m. His swimming is still steady, but he's having some problems emptying in the bathroom, so he's "lost" a bit of time there. Still looking good. He's done 69% of the distance; 13.2 km left.
He's 23 minutes & 1 km ahead of his plan. Because he planned his last "hard" hour (3 km) for 4 p.m. I expect he'll converge back on his original plan. Rhonda & Anna, who know him better than me, are still confident in his doing the whole thing.
(Brandon Lyons missing the excitement, but working on his Winston Churchill impression.)
Tony hit 26.9 km at 3 p.m., about 1.4 km ahead of his schedule. Then at 10:00 elapsed time (a minute later), he hit 27 km, 36 minutes ahead of schedule. He's done 64% of the distance, and has 15.2 km to go.
Tony's just finished 26 km, 62% of the journey. He did it in 9:39, and has 16.2 km left. He's dropped a bit of time; he's now "only" 33 minutes ahead of schedule.
Rhonda says we're not going to update him until he hits 30 km. :-)
Tony's swim is in aid of the CKNW Orphans' Fund. And you can donate here.
Tony just cleared 25 km. He's now 36 minutes ahead of schedule. He looks great, to be honest. We signal his last 25 for each 500, and when we did that, he yelled, "Well, it's about time!" He seems to be in great spirits.
He's 59% of the distance, and has 17.2 km to go.
Tony's never swum more than 26 km in one session. (Ok, not sure "just" is appropriate. :-) Rhonda thinks the metres past 26,000 may be tough.
In 7:33. So about 7 min up on his published schedule, and 27 min ahead of his revised. Pretty good. Especially if Rhonda's right about a missed 150 m. Tony still looks good. We're going to celebrate halfway at his next 500-m rest (i.e., 21.5 km).
In 7:12. He's about 8 minutes ahead of schedule, but he's probably going to adjust his work in this hour and the next. His plan called for 3 km and then 1 km, but my reading of what he told me at the 20-km rest is that he'll be happy to do 4 km between the hours.
He's done 47% of the distance, and has 22.2 km left.
The only skin problem Tony has is on his left shoulder - his beard abrades his skin, so every couple of km he's treating it with BodyGlide. You can see the red spots in the pic. He took care to shave twice today at 3 a.m.
Tony hit 17 km as the clock struck 11 (metaphorically). He's right on schedule, & sounding & looking better.
Someone asked about stroke count. We've been counting his 25-m count once every km, and he's been holding steady at 19 or 20.
It's late morning in New Westminster. The Canada Games Pool is very busy, very noisy. The 50-m pool has been divided by a bulkhead. The southern end is divided into lanes for adult swimming. Most of the swimmers are quite adult - I feel young. :-)
One lane is Tony & his volunteer swimmers.
The northern 25 m is being used for easy water aerobics, being led by a loud, energetic young woman.
The east end is occupied by a large Nautilus training area. The far southern area has a kind of mezzanine with treadmills. They're all full (don't these people have jobs???), and they're looking out over the pool(s).
There's loud rock music.
Altogether, a 5-ring circus.
Tony's done 14.5 km. Taking his usual 500-m break. Now about 500 m short of his plan - but there's some thought in the volunteer zone that some laps may have been missed.
A couple of days ago: "Marathon swim is all about helping kids."
Lyons chose the CKNW Orphans' Fund because it works with children. He also supports its policy that every dollar raised goes directly to the Fund.
"I use the same motto in my fundraising," he said. "I paid for everything in my training. I've paid for all my swim time, my coaching, my food, everything, and I think that's a good way to do it. And if someone gives me a dollar, it goes straight to the Orphans' Fund."
Pic is of the Canada Games Pool itself.
Tony is swimming in the leftmost lane beyond the white bulkhead. We're along that same wall, at the 25-m point. The reason for this strange perspective is not to violate the rules about taking pix of the other swimmers.
Tony's volunteer swimmers this hour are tweens in the Hyack Swim Club. It's very cute seeing big Tony being matched by the slender Hyack swimmers. (I'm not posting pix because of the rules. You have to take my word for it. :-)