Morning Swim Show, Dec. 11: A Shift in Training Resulted in Masters World Records for David Guthrie

PHOENIX, Arizona, December 11. MASTERS world record holder David Guthrie joins today's edition of The Morning Swim Show after his record-breaking performances recently in Texas.

Guthrie talks about his radical changes in training and nutrition that has led to him swimming fast in the breaststroke events, and the injury that kept him from performing at full capacity. Guthrie is a student of the sport, and he talks about the changes he's seen in breaststroke that he attempts to emulate, as well as his impressions of the recent swims by Kevin Cordes. Be sure to visit SwimmingWorld.TV for more video interviews.

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Morning Swim Show Transcripts
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(Note: This is an automated service where some typos and grammatical errors may occur.)

Jeff Commings: This is the Morning Swim Show for Tuesday, December 11th, 2012. I am your host Jeff Commings. David Guthrie was on a record-breaking spree last week in San Antonio resetting his three Masters world records in the breaststroke events and helping Longhorn Masters get 2 medley relay records and David joins us right now in the FINIS Monitor from Houston. David good to see you, how are you today?

David Guthrie: Good, I am doing great.

Jeff: I am sure you are. Congratulations! Three individual world records, 2 relay world records. I mean you have been in Masters for awhile. This has got to be up there in one of your top meets.

David: It is. This has been the best year ever. I started kind of tallying up the records and I have never had a year like this. It's pretty exciting.

Jeff: Yeah, we will talk about all of that just a second. Before we go on with your world records, I want to kind of get your perspective on another record breaker from last week. Kevin Cordes, 51.3 10 yard breast, 1:50.7, 200 yard breast. I mean what are your thoughts about that?

David: It is — you know what we are doing is, it is a completely different sport, you know I mean that is just mind boggling. His upside is huge you know his is still really young. I think he is still 19. It is just going to be amazing what the record books are going to look like when he through with him and he is not at all alone. I mean there is a whole crop of guys right there. It gets really exciting to watch.

Jeff: I think I could speak for you and other breaststrokers in Masters to say that I hope you have he doesn't swim masters.

David: That is — the rear view mirror is important, you know, you see he is coming up like Steve West. You know he is just making shambles of anything that I have ever done you know. So it is motivating for me to try to give them at least a little bit of a challenge, by the time he gets you know down the road.

Jeff: You are setting the bar pretty high for yourself though.

David: You know that is what it is all about. It is to see what we can do ourselves. You know we can't control what anybody else does and you know there are a lot of guys out there in my age group who don't always show up. When they do it gets crowded, you know there is a lot of competition. A lot of guys are capable of going fast so I am just — you know it was a good year they didn't show up this year for the most part.

Jeff: Oh yeah, like you said you had —

David: Rich Schroeder had some really good swims this year, which is great to see.

Jeff: Well, Richard Schroeder doesn't really do the 200 which is kind of your best event so that I think you probably feel pretty happy about that. So let's talk about those records from last weekend. 30.73 and 1:06.8 in the 50 and 100 breast and these are all short course meters, but with the 2:25.70. I think was the standout swim of the meet. You dropped 3 seconds off your world record in the 50 to 54 age group so why — like I said you are more of a 200 swimmer but why was your 200 so much better than your sprint breaststrokes at that meet?

David: You know I hate to make excuses, but I was just not 100%. I swam pretty fast about 3 weeks ago at the woodlands meet and I got the 200 record there. I was a 26. So I was swimming well. I knew I was you know ready to go. My 100 and 50 were just a little bit off those records but for being unrested you know I knew it was ready to go, but Wednesday I had an injury, a hip injury and I wasn't even sure I could you know drive over to San Antonio much less swim, so you know it just kind of changed everything. So I was just really thankful to be able to get those records without being 100%.

Jeff: Was it an injury that was kind of threatening to keep you out of the pool at all?

David: Yeah, it was one of those things that you couldn't even bend over to brush my teeth. Really painful, lower back, it is a hip thing. It is the TFL that holds the top of the femur in place when that gets kind of jacked a lot of bad things can happen. So you know your hip has a lot of range of motion. It is a complex joint that is connected to a lot of major muscle groups and when that thing goes wrong you know it is a problem, but fortunately I didn't have to really bend over to swim so.

Jeff: You got to bend over to do your starts so.

David: Exactly but that was about it and that is actually how I hurt it. Just putting a lot of pressure on it in training doing a bunch of starts, but I got some kind of emergency treatment by an amazing physical therapist. She got it back in place for me. It was still sore, but it wasn't you know out of place. It wasn't creating a problem.

Jeff: I would imagine though that this puts everything — kind of motivates you for next year knowing that you weren't 100%.

David: You better believe it. You know when I got into this age group they had just banned the suites and all of my records from before has pretty much been wiped out and getting into this new age group, I wasn't, for 2 years – I wasn't even for a long course I wasn't even close you know I had to change what I was doing. You know it was kind of discouraging you know to not have low-hanging fruit, but now for the first time in this age group I look at this times as a low hanging fruit you know I am coming back for more so.

Jeff: Well in 2012 you just say as you probably were your better years in masters what you know you set two long course world records, what has been the catalyst for you this year to help you swim so fast?

David: I started training. I completely changed my training and for several years I had been training on my own with a couple of kind of informal training partners, but no coach, no real team, and you know I just realized I am not getting really close to these records. I have got to do something different and you know honestly I was doing training where I never did anything unpleasant. Never did anything I didn't want to do so you know you just can't get there that way, especially long course. So last spring I switched programs. I have joined the Rice Aquatics Masters and they are you know there is no Masters Minute. They are all business and I got in shape.

Jeff: So basically you do have people around you holding you accountable?

David: Yeah, I mean it is a challenging program, you know when I first started I was not anywhere near the fast lane, I was in the middle and just kind of have to get used to that kind of training again and you know once I get over the hump you know I had a good taper for long course. I needed a lot of rest off of what I have done, but coming back after a long course I was you know I already adapted to the training so I can just pick up where I left off. So I had you know pretty high expectations for the short course season, but you know I owe it all to that program, to Seth and the other coaches there and my teammates there you know they are so much fun to swim less and it is available, you know you can work as hard as you want to work and it is the key. No question.

Jeff: Well that definitely, I definitely believe that would probably help you out a lot. Do you feel like with the team that you are now not just having someone there to race with you, but like you said you are just basically not making any excuses for yourself anymore in training?

David: Yeah, there are a lot of things. I mean what we did before, we just show up and we make it up every day, just wing it you know so now it is a little bit different because I show up and it is a pretty you know most of the workouts are pretty challenging you know, you can find something in it every day to challenge yourself with and absolutely you know I don't have any debate about what I am going to do. I just, you just do it and it is so much easier than having to generate all of that kind of willpower on your own. You just get carried along by the program, to a large extent, but I also have to say I have been a lot more disciplined about my diet in this new kind of training regimen and I was burning a lot more calories so I have a dropped a bunch of weight. I probably dropped 20 pounds since last spring. So you know when they took the suits away I thought I would never have that feeling in the water again, but I was really surprised this summer at nationals. I felt just like I had a suit on. It was fantastic so that really was encouraging because you know that feeling of super low resistance, being slippery in the water, feeling kind of like a fish is what I loved about those suits and so when they took them away it was it was kind of tough so it is really, It is a cool thing to be able to have that feeling again.

Jeff: Do you think also part of it was especially for breaststrokers the high tech suits made you swim differently, you had most of the people pretty much change their strokes radically because of the buoyancy that they had and then when the took the suits away a lot of people had trouble rediscovering their strokes. Now as you said in kind of trying to give back to that level that you were in before, do you think it just took you a couple of years to really get back into the kind of strokes that made you feel comfortable again?

David: You know, I never felt like it was the buoyancy that was the big benefit. It was the slipperiness, the low resistance which was the glide. You know, you could get so much distance per stroke and distance off of the pullouts without any effort and you know it is just an amazing kind of feeling. It was easier I think with the suit to work on technique to work on body position, high hips, that kind of thing. It just made swimming easier, there is no question. The key for me to get to that point where I can do that now is training. I just had to be fit. I had to lose some weight, lower resistance in other ways just by being trimmer and being you know fit enough to be able to sustain that kind of effort. Now with breaststroke it is completely counterintuitive as you know, I mean everything about it is counter intuitive where you put the effort, where you relax. I am finally getting to the point where I am trying to mimic what the young guys are doing. They are really quick in the front. You know there is a lot of effort in the throw with the upper body and that takes strength. It takes you know, fitness to be able to do that to sustain that. So I can do it for a little while. I hit it now and then, but that is really what I am working on .If you look at Kevin Cordes, he is super quick on top of the water and then there is a glide, but it is not as kind of slow motion pull. You know there is no messing around. You just put in a lot of energy into that dive forward.

Jeff: Yeah.

David: If you look at his stroke count it is unbelievable you know. He took 4 strokes in the first 25 of the 51.1 and it was 3 strokes, 4 strokes on his 200 and built it up the last 50, but 4 strokes going 1:50. it is…

Jeff: Yeah, I was there in the building and I didn't have words for it either.

David: It is unbelievable. You know the guys around are the best. I mean they are amazing to watch too. You can learn from every one of those guys you know.

Jeff: Yeah, absolutely.

David: He is just a different animal. We just haven't seen anything like him before.

Jeff: Yeah that is good way of putting it. You are an architect by trade, it's what do you do for a living, have you been asked or do you have any kind of goals of designing a swimming pool?

David: I would love to design a swimming pool. Yeah something I think about for sure. I just have to wait for the great opportunity or any opportunity really. I am on the board at the Dad's Club and we are working new facilities kind of re-doing what we have and adding some new facilities, but I can't really — there is a limit to what I can do in that situation. I am on the board kind of a conflict of interest situation, but I am at least able to hopefully influence the process, kind of guide them through what a successful project looks like.

Jeff: Well maybe anybody watching the show now in need of a pool probably will be giving you a call.

David: I hope so. I would love to work on one.

Jeff: Well you definitely got chlorine in your blood so that definitely will probably help out a lot. It will go a long way I am sure.

David: Yeah I am pretty saturated.

Jeff: Yeah, yeah. Again, congratulations on a great weekend. Three individual world record, it is something that definitely a lot of people are really jealous of, especially me. I mean it is one thing to be able to do like I just do the 50 and the 100 but to be able to do 50, 100 and 200 so well and to continuously do it is a great accomplishment.

David: Thank you, thank you so much.

Jeff: All right David. We will see you down the road.

David: Okay, take care Jeff.

Jeff: So that is Masters World Record holder David Guthrie joining us in the FINIS Monitor today and that is going to do it for today's Morning Swim Show as always we invite you to keep up with all the latest news on on Facebook or on Twitter. I am Jeff Commings. Thanks for watching.

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