Wednesday, January 07, 2009

"When I got to the 85-metre mark, typically the body shuts down, but I had an extra surge of adrenaline..." - Jason Lezak

Here is an article obviously about Jason Lezak but includes not only his thoughts on the 4x100 relay but how he trains and why.

From the Canadian Jewish News:
“It’s all about the power of the mind. I blocked it out, felt strong and good – it was the Olympic Games,” he said.

“I was breathing to the right side, so every time I took a breath I could see where he was in the water. When I got to the 85-metre mark, typically the body shuts down, but I had an extra surge of adrenaline. I’ve looked at the replays – I did not go faster, but he tightened up and faded, dying like a dog.”

On training he had this to say:

"... Lezak trains using a specific workout plan. “Most people train nine times a week in the pool, but I think they do “garbage yardage,” he said, meaning that with the aim of swimming 6,000 metres, they “throw in a bunch of crap.”

He is a firm believer in quality, not quantity. “You’ve got to make every stroke count,” Lezak said.

It’s not about having a coach poolside to motivate him, either. “I swim because I have goals, not because anyone is telling me,” he said. ..."


Jason is currently looking for a sponsor.


Joel / the17thman said...

I might have to make a post on garbage yardage myself sometime soon. I am so against coaches use of garbage yardage. It's like the coaches have 90 minutes of time to fill up so they toss in random warm up and 2ndary main sets that as a swimmer you know they just tacked on to eat up time. Sometimes I think it's just better so say "hey guys, sorry but todays swim will be 80 minutes long but i want you to really work on this main set".

Ahelee said...


Thanks for this post Tony...

I am a coach and a swimmer who HATES garbage yardage. That said though, there is a huge hitch.

The interesting thing about coaching masters swimmers is that a large majority of these swimmers want, expect - and demand these junk/garbage yardage sets.

Now please understand I am NOT saying EVERYONE in the pool but "many".

I am a competitve swimmer & athlete who loves to train and try new kinds of specific practice sets and techniques.

My experience with many masters swimmers is that they enjoy swimming. They often choose a masters swim program instead of joining a health club.
They want to move and get their heart rate up for an hour or so a few days a week.

And I very much support this choice to swim over going to the gym!

As a coach I try to accomodate both fitness garbage yardage loving swimmers - and the competitive athletes with goals and plans for improvement.

Signing off maybe I can add that watching Jason Lezak train here in Irvine at many mid-day practices, has been awe-inspiring and surreal.
Pretty sure he is one of the most unique world class athletes in the way that he maintains his focus and work ethic in the pool and his dryland training.

The Screaming Viking! said...

waitamminit... how does Lezak not have a sponsor? That 400 relay could squeeze enough great marketing out of it to bail out the auto industry!

Tony Austin said...

No sponsor! CI am summarily disappointed with his management!

Kerry said...

I think he was sponsored by Nike, before they pulled out of the suit wars. So he might just be shopping for a new option, although suits or no suits, I think Nike would be silly to drop him - he's ideal for brand imagery.

Anyway, I agree, if Jason Lezak is a hard sell for a sponsorship, then he needs a new agent.