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Today’s excerpt offers a glimpse into the underwater world of Leo Scott:
The water rushed past his ears, obliterating all other noise.
Sensory deprivation was one of swimming’s most appealing qualities for Leo. The worries of the day, the shouted voices around him, the disappointment of authority figures—all were far away once he submerged in the water and focused on swimming as fast as possible. He did a lot of thinking during practice, sometimes solving problems and sometimes making plans.
They were doing a set of ten one hundreds, each on a faster interval, which made for a challenging aerobic workout. Eric led the fastest lane, and Leo went second.
He pushed off for his seventh one hundred, his legs burning from exertion. Long and smooth, he told himself, taking the first length out relaxed. As he approached the wall, he whipped his body over in a swift flip turn and exploded off in a tight streamline. For the next three lengths, Leo focused on keeping a long stroke with a lively tempo and closed fast on Eric’s feet. Both swimmers breathed hard at the wall and squinted at the pace clock.
Leo only had little rest before he set off to repeat the process three more times.
Before number ten, Matt barked at him: “Make this one your best, Leo!”
Leo gritted his teeth as he pushed off for the last repeat. Lifting his head at the finish, he heard Matt holler “Fifty-two!” Leo grinned as he panted.
“Great set, guys.” Matt nodded. “Fifty easy cool down.”