One Swimmer, One Team.

Weekly Schedule

I just wanted it.
Lilli Wehr, after dropping over a second in her 50 Back at finals on Saturday night!
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Only one change to the schedule this week. HS+, HS, HS Camp will practice on Saturday, 9/14 from 7-9:00am at NR. All other groups will practice as scheduled throughout the week.

Questions about the calendar? Please email Coach Lindsey.

Littleton YMCA Lightning Information
Littleton YMCA clears the pool when lightning is within 10 miles of the facility. It remains closed for 30 minutes after the most recent strike. When this happens within 5 minutes of HRA scheduled practice or during practice, coaches will dismiss athletes to their parents and practice is over. On nights when weather is questionable please call LYMCA @303-797-9622 to see if pool has been closed before venturing out. We appreciate your patience with this situation. Closure due to lightning may happen a handful of times throughout the year.


HRA team values were demonstrated over and over again on Saturday during the revival of the Red/White/Blue Intersquad Meet. Great competition, new friendships and an abundance of team spirit made this a fun opening event for HRA. A special thank you to all our senior athletes for mentoring their team with amazing effort and attitudes. Your acts of kindness were observed many times throughout the event. Job well done guys.

Red Team Captains Ellie Hendren and Jack Engler valiantly led their team to victory this year! Bragging rights go to the Red Team!

Colleges & HRA

Alexis Redford graduated from ThunderRidge HS May 2019. She will be attending the University of California, Berkeley in the fall.

Teagan Haberkorn graduated from Mountain Vista HS in May 2019. She will be continuing her academic and swimming career at the University of South Dakota.

Ryan Renshaw graduated from Arapahoe HS in May. He will be attending Baylor University in the fall.

Jenna Bates graduated from Rock Canyon HS. She will be attending the CU Boulder Leeds School of Business in the fall.

GriffinSTRONG Fundraiser and Scholarship

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GriffinSTRONG Value Of The Week: Fearless
Those closest to Donna know that she was passionate about her family, friends and community. No matter what diagnosis was thrown her way during her illness, Donna chose to persevere in a positive way. She loved so much that she was willing to persevere through the highs and the lows.

Coaches Corner

10 Money-Saving Tips for Feeding Hungry Athletes
(Adapted from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and TrueSport)

School-aged athletes work really hard and eat massive amounts of food. And keeping your athlete fed isn’t just important for performance at practice or at the meet; well-fed kids are more attentive in class, better able to focus on schoolwork, and they are getting the nutrition and energy they need to grow and develop. As a parent, however, it probably feels like these ravenous kids are eating you out of house and home. As the grocery bills start to stack up, here are ten tips for feeding your student athletes nutritious food without breaking your budget.

Plan menus and make a list: Plan menus and write a shopping list that corresponds with the store aisles. Look for menu planning and recipe help on your supermarket’s website.

Use coupons and rewards cards: Clipping coupons or printing them from websites can save you 10-15% on your grocery bill. Also, consider joining your supermarket’s shopper’s club.

Buy store brands: Private label brands are 15-20% less expensive than their national brand counterparts, and the quality of the food may match the national brand.

Buy on sale and in bulk: Cruise the aisle for sales on shelf-stable items or products you use regularly. Buy larger quantities only if you have proper storage space and will use the food before it spoils.

Compare unit prices: Use the “unit price” (price per pound, ounce or pint) on a shelf tag to compare national brands with store brands, or bulk and economy-sizes with single-serve or regular-size packages.

Read food labels: Compare nutrients using the % Daily Value in the Nutrition Facts Label. 5% or less is low – try to aim low in saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, and sodium. 20% or more is high – try to aim high in fiber, vitamins and minerals.

Shop the perimeter: Fresh produce, meats, dairy, and breads tend to be on the outer perimeter of supermarkets. Start there before hitting the inner aisles for other necessities. For produce not in season, frozen and canned fruits and vegetables (with little or no added salt or sugar) are a nutritious option.

Shop seasonally: Fresh produce often costs less when it’s in season. Visit a local farmer’s market or join a produce club to take advantage of seasonal fruits and vegetables. For produce not in season, frozen and canned fruits and vegetables (with little or no added salt or sugar) are a nutritious option.

Keep foods safe and prevent food waste: Use dating information (“sell by” and “best used by”) to select the freshest foods at the market. Put cold and frozen foods in your shopping cart last and store them right away in the refrigerator and freezer once you’re home, with the oldest “sell by” dates to be used first.

Pay attention at the check-out: Make sure prices ring up as advertised or as indicated on the shelf label, especially for sale items.

Remember the Food Groups 101
Produce: Seasonal produce usually offers the best value for your money. However, if not in season, canned or frozen fruits and vegetables may be more economical.

Grains: Count on whole-grain breads, cereals, pastas and other grain products to add variety to your meals at a low cost. Buy in bulk when possible and cook them yourself rather than buying quick-cooking or pre-seasoned varieties.

Dairy: Look for special sale promotions for milk, cheese and yogurt. Avoid purchasing more than you can use by the expiration date.

Protein: Calculate cost per serving, not cost per pound, when buying meat, poultry, eggs, and fish. Eggs, chicken and turkey are usually your most economical choices. Also consider alternative sources of protein like beans, peas, peanut butter and nuts.

Coach Bocci

Meet Overview

Our first big team event happens on Saturday, Sept. 7th with the Red, White and Blue Meet followed by a pancake brunch and suit/equipment ordering with our sponsor MISports. Be sure to reserve the morning from 7:00am-12:30pm. This is a great time to get to know other families on the team!

MISports Ordering Session
A message from Kristi at MISports:

New ordering process this year on custom items.

All custom items
(suits/parkas/bags/hoodies) will need to be ordered through the HRA team store. Order form found here.

At the fitting we will be sizing folks, but they will need to go home and order online.
Equipment/goggles/non custom items can still be purchased at the fitting.

NOTE: deadline to order team shirts is 9/13.

All custom orders will take 2 weeks after 9/13

If you just need to order a custom item and know your size, you don't need to come to the fitting. Place your order through the HRA TEAM STORE.

Stop by MISports to pick up/order equipment needed for the season. Suits will be available for sizing/ordering. MISports is HRA's official equipment provider. In addition to the above equipment, items listed below are required team gear for HRA swimmers:

Red Cap (White for finals at a prelim/final format meet) - $15.00
3 HRA T-shirts: 1 Black, 1 Blue, 1 Red
1 team suit

These items will be available for ordering both online and at the Red/White/Blue Meet. Please note, if an order is placed online it will be delivered to your residence or can be picked up at MISports, 4025 E Iliff Ave, Denver, CO 80222. The link for online ordering will be available in next Mondays update.

FORM Fall High Point
Date: Saturday, 9/21
Location: Gateway High School, Aurora
Deadline: Friday, 9/13

This is a "jumpstart the season" meet for BL/WH/SL/RED/STATE. Visit the TU Event Page for details.

HRA Swim-A-Thon
Date: Saturday, 9/28
Location: Northridge
Swim-A-Thon Goal: Individuals ($140.00) Team ($30,000)

Save the date for our yearly swim-a-thon, Saturday, September 28th! Tracey Quartaro, our Swim-A-Thon Coordinator, has been hard at work setting up the online donation center via our Team Unify website. It will go live this Saturday, so we’ll be able to accept and track donations online, and you’ll see a donation thermometer displaying our team progress to reach our goal. If you have any specific swim-a-thon questions, please don’t hesitate to email Tracey.

In addition to individual lap sponsors, this year we are offering three (3) different corporate/team sponsorship levels. If you know of a business that may want to become a corporate sponsor, please pass along the following information.
The Gold Level ($750) Sponsor receives the following:
Banner/signage with your Business name and logo as a swim “lane” sponsor at this year’s Swim-A-Thon

Your Logo and Business name on this year’s Swim-A-Thon T-shirt worn by 200 swimmers in the community

Full page ad in all (4) HRA-hosted swim meet programs sold to hundreds of swim meet attendees

A link (Logo) on HRA website which connects to your business’s website

Your logo on the rotating slide show on HRA website

Sponsor “shout outs” by the announcer during HRA-hosted swim meets
The Silver Level ($500) Sponsor receives the following:
Logo and Business name on this year’s Swim-A-Thon T-shirt worn by 200 swimmers in the community

½ page ad in all (4) HRA-hosted swim meet programs sold to hundreds of swim meet attendees

Link (logo) on HRA website which connects to your business’s website

Your logo on the rotating slide show on HRA website

Sponsor “shout outs” by the announcer during HRA-hosted swim meets
The Bronze Level ($250) Sponsor receives the following:
Logo and Business name on this year’s Swim-A-Thon T-shirt worn by 200 swimmers in the community

¼ page ad in all (4) HRA-hosted swim meet programs sold to hundreds of swim meet attendees

Link (logo) on HRA website which connects to your business’s website

Sponsor “shout outs” by the announcer during HRA-hosted swim meets
Practice Group Parent Meetings
In an effort to communicate and educate about our program, we are providing practice group parent meetings. Come on out and meet your child's coach, listen to their expectations and get your questions answered. These meetings will provide a positive approach to the season. GO HRA!

ST/SECT/HS(+)/NAT'L group meetings TBD.
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HRA Housekeeping

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The staff have received emails about inaccurate attendance recording and we thank you for bringing this issue to our attention. We love the fact that you are tracking this for your swimmer(s)!

As a staff, we realize that during most of September and October we were off a bit on our tracking. Beginning Nov. 1, we will begin earnestly tracking attendance. Please feel free to email any of us if you notice that we have made a mistake.

Also note that attendance is taken at meets so look for those days to show up beginning in November. Thanks for your patience!

HRA cap policy: Coach Bocci loves it when we look like a team from the top to the bottom. At meets swimmers will need to adhere to the Black (Fri), Blue (Sat.),Red (Sun) cap policy. GriffinStrong caps will be worn during May and June to promote the scholarship fund AND most importantly to remember Donna Griffin.

Behavior at Facilities: We have been asked to remind everyone that we are guests at the facilities we use when we are there as an HRA member. Please act respectfully throughout the facilities!

Athlete Equipment: The staff is expecting athletes to have their equipment by now including tempo trainers at every practice. Please label all equipment.

Challenge Events: Our meets in the fall have challenge events that are a MUST for our developing groups. Completing these events boosts confidence and creates a tremendous bond amongst the athletes. Please go back and look over the events your child is signed up for and include the challenge event ie., Turkey Trot. These events are listed on the TU event page. Thank you!

HRA Named to USA Swimming Club Excellence List

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For the second straight year, HRA has been awarded the honor of a Bronze Medal ranking in the USA Swimming Club Excellence program, recognizing the organization’s highest-performing clubs in the development of athletes 18 years and younger.

Achieving Bronze Medal status is an enormous accomplishment for our program and our community. This achievement is reached only through the tremendous dedication of our athletes, their parents and our entire coaching staff. It is truly a ‘team effort’ for us to help every young athlete in our program reach their highest potential. Thanks to everyone for making this

HRA tallied 5,958 points, to finish 122nd nationally (the exact same ranking as 2017). Fort Collins Area Swim Team tallied 25,325 points to earn Gold Medal status with a 16th place national finish. Univ of Denver Hilltoppers scored 7,583 points finishing in 87th place nationally and earning Silver Medal status. Other Bronze Medal clubs include Flatiron Athletic Club (6,724 points - 110th place), Colorado Springs Swim Team (5,139 points - 144th place), Jeffco Hurricanes (4,867 points 155th place), Pikes Peak Athletics (4,815 points - 157th place), and Aces Swim Club (4,053 points - 177st place).

In its 16th year, the Club Excellence program identifies clubs that execute strong, well-rounded programs to produce elite 18-and-under athletes. The top 20 clubs earn Gold level ranking and those rated 21-100 are designated as Silver honorees. The next 100 clubs are recognized at the Bronze level.

Meet Entry Procedure

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    The Hurricane Meet as well as the rest of the tentative meet schedule is included on the new HRA TeamUnify site. All meet entries will be handled completely online through the this site.

    To sign up for a meet:

    Click on the Events page or scroll to the bottom of the main page.

    Find the event you would like to attend and click on "Edit Commitment" which appears immediately below the event title.

    Click on your swimmer .

    In the "Declaration" box, click on: "Yes, please sign [swimmer name] up for this event." In the Notes box you can add specific notes if needed e.g. if you are not available for a relay or can only attend 1 day etc. Then click on "Save Changes".

    Here is where either of 2 things can happen:

    If its very early, the meet information will not be available online and your commitment intention will be complete.

    If the meet information is available you will then be able to select the specific events you would like your swimmer to race. Note: If you have any questions about which events your swimmer should race, talk to the coaching staff.

    The Hurricane Meet is the only meet available to sign up for individual events. Please indicate your intention to attend other meets through the fall, however. We will make individual entry registration available as soon as meet information is posted by the respective meet directors.

Summer Practice Schedule & Requirements

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    Blue/White Group Families

    Spring Practice Schedule

    Having returned to our regular practice schedule this week, we will remain on this schedule through the week of May 21st. Athletes are encouraged to participate in all meets through the end of our spring practice schedule (including the Suburban League Pentathlon, HRA vs. FAST vs. CUDA Tri-Meet and CUDA Steve Drozda Meets).

    Athlete Equipment Reminder/Addition
    A quick reminder to be sure your athlete(s) have all the equipment necessary for practices this spring/summer. With certain groups, we are asking for families to provide additional equipment which the coaches have dedicated to using on a regular basis.

    Blue Group: Fins, Pull buoy, Kickboard (may borrow from Littleton Y/HRCA)
    White Group: Fins, Pull buoy, Kickboard (may borrow from Littleton Y/HRCA), Tempo trainer, Paddles

    Summer Practice Schedule

    Beginning Memorial Day week, we will shift to our summer schedule. You can find the general summer schedule above. Below are notes on the schedule and expectations.

    HRA runs two parallel programs during the summer: long course training (similar to the short course season as well as the schedule of the older HRA athletes) and the summer swim clinic.

    The former is designed to prepare our athletes to qualify and compete at the 12&U LC State meet (July 27-29 at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs). The summer swim clinic is designed to keep sharp the skills our athletes have acquired over the short course season. It is designed to compliment summer swim league training and to comply with the summer club state meet rules (see more below).

    Our summer schedule will begin on Tues, May 30 and run through the completion of the 12&U State meet. The first clinic session will be Wed, May 30. We will run clinic programming through Wed, July 18.

    There are no dues during June-July for either the long course season or the summer swim clinic. Those fees are covered in the annual dues paid from Sept-May. The only additional charges will be for meet entry fees, busing to Lowry and/or equipment/apparel.

    Summer Swim Rules
    Our athletes represent a number of clubs, but many of the same rules apply. There are two governing bodies: the league (MHSL for Seahawks, etc.) and the Colorado State Summer Club Swimming Association. Each body conducts championship meets as described below.

    Leagues such as the MHSL conduct dual meets as well as a league championship meet. The MHSL also conducts an All-Star meet based on the results of the league championship meet. Leagues such as the MHSL have no restrictions on participation in USA Swimming clubs such as HRA. Athletes may represent their summer clubs and train/compete with HRA.

    The Colorado State Summer Club Swimming Association conducts the annual summer club state meet. CSSCSA rules state in order to be eligible to compete in the summer club state meet, athletes much train and compete exclusively with their summer club team beginning May 15. Thus, this will be the final week of regular HRA practices for athletes following this path. Because the HRA summer clinic is simply an instructional 'camp', it complies with the requirements of the CSSCSA.

    HRA Requirements
    We want to be sure all our athletes are prepared to progress (in both skills and conditioning) when we resume our short course training in September. As such, only athletes who participate in long course or the clinic sessions will be guaranteed a spot on HRA next fall. Athletes who do not participate will be required to tryout again in August.

    While we feel athletes should focus on only one program, if athletes are considering competing for both HRA (in long course) and their summer club, we ask parents to set a reasonable practice schedule for their athletes. Our recommendations remain the same. We feel a minimum of three practices per week with HRA is required for athletes to be prepared to compete at a high level. We also expect athletes to compete in at least one meet per month. Given the short long course season, athletes should take advantage of every racing opportunity (in at least one day of competition). Please remember that IMR/IMX scores are zeroed out at the beginning of the new season. HRA athlete's aged 10&U should focus on completing the IMR Challenge. Click HERE for details.

    We do not expect athletes to participate in two training sessions in one day. A recommendation may be to join HRA practices on MWF or MWR, and summer club practices on TR or TF.

    If you have not already done so, please speak with the coaching staff to discuss your preference to participate in the long course season or the stroke clinics this summer.

    Littleton YMCA Check-In

    A quick reminder as we approach the summer schedule, our White group and summer clinic will be using Littleton YMCA frequently. Please follow guidelines with regards to use of the facility. Athletes must sign in at the front desk. If parents wish to proceed downstairs to the lounge or pool areas, please sign in as well.

    If parents wish to utilize the facility for their own workouts, please speak to the front desk regarding monthly or daily passes. The prices are very reasonable.

Words Of Wisdom

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Coach Bocci: Success In Athletics And The Role of the Coach
Adapted from The American Swimming Coaches Association and a speech given by Coach Bob Bowmen (Phelps coach)

Many parents wonder what differentiates the great athlete from the average one, and whether their kids have what it takes to be great athletes. Dr. Jack Daniels, a US Olympic runner and pentathlete, former exercise physiologist at State University of New York at Cortland, and an influential figure in developing the U.S. Swimming Sports Medicine Program, summarized it best:

"There are really only four ingredients for success in athletics. One is genetic ability. Some genetic differences are easy to see (As a Cleveland Cavaliers fan I’ve seen 6’8” Lebron James up close and he’s a physical specimen), while others are physiological and internal differences that can't be seen…

The second thing besides genetic ability is intrinsic motivation. If you have a seven-footer and the coach wants him to play basketball, but he wants to be an artist, you won't get too much basketball out of him.

The third ingredient is opportunity - providing our athletes with facilities and competition opportunities against good athletes. (HRA does an awesome job of this!)

The final ingredient is direction. Direction means a good coach and a good program to follow.”

What I’ve found in my career is that direction is the area where parents and coaches really have an opportunity to help the athlete. The role of the coach, and my personal philosophy for coaching, is as follows:

1) Teaching outstanding biomechanics to build the base for all future swimming successes and fulfillment. Stroke education from the novice through advanced age group programs must be primary. I define age group swimming from age 10 to about 17 years old, and novice swimming, ages 9 and younger. When a swimmer gets to 18 years old (around the time they head off to college), they venture into the world of senior level swimming. This doesn’t mean a swimmer under the age of 18 can’t achieve incredible things (including making the US Olympic Team), it just means we have a core focus in the program of laying the foundation for continued and sustained improvement. But make no mistake, I want our swimmers to be the best, not just the best in Colorado, but the best in the country… and it all starts with proper technique.

2) Teaching values that reflect the best of our sport. Beyond the biomechanics, we teach and foster the core values of honesty, commitment, loyalty, friendship, poise, team spirit, teamwork, sportsmanship, and self-control (if you get a chance, look at legendary basketball coach John Wooden’s Pyramid of Success, a great reference for building a successful team and career). With that written, the pool is a giant and open classroom. So parents, next time you’re watching your swimmer practice or race, keep in mind it’s essentially the same as if you were watching them all day in school (and you can see every mistake they make). Kids fail, even us parents fail from time to time…and I’m speaking from experience as a father of two. They may not do a best time every race, they may overreact to a bad swim, they may procrastinate on homework and have to stay up late to catch up (and practice the next day may be a drag), but it’s not the end of the world… it’s a learning process. In fact, it’s good for them to fail from time to time in this safe environment so they can learn to pick themselves back up, refocus, and achieve great things.

3) Provide the aerobic training base from which science tells us great athletes develop. The easiest way to explain the aerobic training base is in terms of capacity. Aerobic training is all about improving and expanding the infrastructure of the swimmer (i.e. the capacity or performance potential). In business terms, it’s like building a bigger warehouse so you can store more inventory or purchasing more trucks to move more inventory. Once we’ve focused on and increased the aerobic training base, we can add in utilization training (although both types of training happen to some degree throughout the season, just in different percentages).

Utilization training is race pace and tempo work, speed, power, agility training, etc., all the things we take to the block on race day. In business terms, it’s whatever you need to do to generate and increase the sales. Capacity training builds the bigger warehouse to hold more inventory, while utilization training allows us to sell that inventory and make money. Please keep in mind, this is an oversimplification of the process, and there are literally thousands of books and research papers on capacity and utilization training in sports.

4) Educate parents, our athletes' primary support system, to the needs of their athletes. Swimming careers are lifelong pursuits, and parents of young athletes need a vision of the rewards attainable by their child. This is a great sport; many of my best friends were childhood teammates, I met my wife through swimming, swimming helped hone my time management skills, and the grit I developed as a swimmer made me a better military officer. At a more basic level, it’s a fun pastime (I loved relays and close races), and it’s healthier than sitting in front of a computer all day. These are all abstract or intangible rewards of the sport. It can also help open doors for college acceptance and scholarship opportunities, offer unique travel and competition opportunities, immortalize the swimmer on record boards (until the next swimmer breaks his/her record), and in some rare but expanding circumstances, provide a living as a professional athlete (i.e. some of the tangible rewards of the sport). In the end it’s the parents that provide the means for our swimmers to chase their dreams and goals… which is huge, and I thank all of you for your commitment and support to this great team.

Coach Bocci

Staying Hydrated Through Fruits and Veggies (From True Sport)

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Last week I shared guidelines on protein intake for youth athletes, and I want to continue this series with some hydration tips (especially with the upcoming meets and now that we’re approaching the hot summer months).

Staying hydrated while playing sports is vital regardless of season, but perhaps doubly important in the summer months. This doesn’t just mean carrying around a bottle of water at all times (though that’s certainly not a bad habit), but also eating foods that help rehydrate before, during, and after playing sports.

Aptly-named, watermelon is perhaps the most obvious food that both nourishes and hydrates. This fruit is over 90% water and has a low sugar content. Grapefruit, strawberries, cantaloupe, grapes, honeydew, oranges, peaches, pears, and pineapple all also contain similar amounts of water and are enjoyed by most kids.

Maybe less appealing to a youth athlete’s palette but no less rehydrating are many vegetables such as cucumber, zucchini, and carrots. Throw some combination of these, the aforementioned fruits, ice, and coconut water into a blender and you have one super-hydrating (and tasty) healthy beverage.

Saved by Sodium
While too much sodium can have debilitating effects for the average Joe, for competitive athletes it can be the difference between still being able to swim hard during practice and competitions and crashing hard. For the average American, the USDA recommends an intake of less than 1500-2300 mg of sodium per day, however for an athlete in hot conditions (like practice and meets) this demand is higher. Insufficient sodium levels can result in cramps, headaches, nausea, and hyponatremia (a low concentration of sodium in the blood).

To combat this intense sodium loss, slightly up the intake of sodium leading up to and during intense multi day competitions and hot summer sport days. This can be done through sources that help fulfill athletes’ other nutritional needs at the same time, such as vegetable juices, soups, whole grain snacks like crackers and pretzels, rice cakes, condiments, prepared or cured meats, and sports drinks.

The Day(s) Before
How an athlete performs during a long competition day or during practice is largely dictated by what they take in the day before. Just as beginning to drink water when you become thirsty likely means you are already dehydrated, waiting until the meet day or a long summer training session to load up on the necessary macronutrients and calories is already too late.
In addition to drinking water steadily throughout the days prior, serve up a big and balanced meal that has a good balance of protein, fats, and carbs the night prior. Some favorites of many competitive and professional athletes are whole-grain pastas with chicken or fish with sweet potatoes and other vegetables. While there is little evidence to support traditional “carbo-loading” as necessary, adequate energy intake is necessary so athletes can recover from previous efforts and replenish muscle glycogen. An athlete who consumes a varied diet and adequate total energy will fully replenish glycogen stores within 24 hours of a workout or competition.

Again, hopefully this provides some general guidance. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask your coaches! Have a great week.

Coach Bocci

Is Your Athlete Getting Enough Protein?

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Many youth athletes believe protein is the main nutrient needed in their diets. While protein may not be the main nutrient, it does indeed play a crucial role in an athlete’s balanced nutrition, and it is an important building block for developing strength and peak performance.

Good protein sources for youth athletes
Athletes need to consume a wide variety of high-quality protein foods to grow, repair, and maintain muscle. Some examples of good protein sources (and recommended serving sizes) are:
Serving Size
Grams of Protein
Chicken Breast

3 oz


Ground Beef

4 oz


Cottage Cheese

1/2 cup



8 oz


Cooked Black Beans

1/2 cup


Peanut Butter

2 tbsp



1 large


Mixed Nuts

1/4 cup


How much protein do youth athletes need?
The amount of protein needed by a youth athlete varies based on their athletic goals. Per the TrueSport Nutrition Guide, the following amounts of protein are recommended daily for these different types of athletes:

Endurance: 0.54-0.64 g per pound of body weight

Strength (gaining muscle mass): 0.72-0.81 g per pound of body weight

Strength (maintaining muscle mass): 0.54-0.64 g per pound of body weight

Weight Restricted: 0.63-0.81 g per pound of body weight

When should youth athletes eat protein?
The body’s ability to recover from games, practices, or intense workouts requires adequate rest and proper nutrition. An important component of the recovery process is consuming both carbohydrates and protein shortly after exercise to restore muscle glycogen and stimulate muscle protein synthesis. Eating protein after resistance training decreases physical breakdown and encourages muscle growth.
Eating several small meals that include about 30 grams of protein throughout the day will also support training and muscle-building

What happens if a youth athlete eats too much protein?
Excess protein may not necessarily be dangerous, but it will also not necessarily cause you to develop bigger muscles, run faster, or jump higher, as there is only so much protein that can be absorbed in the body per day.

Do youth athletes need to take protein supplements?
Athletes may feel the need to get protein from supplements because they think it is an easier way to put on muscle. However, they are encouraged to challenge this thought and instead alter their diets to include more protein from proven high-quality sources. Not only is food a better source that gives you many other nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that your body needs, protein supplements can contain ingredients that are unproven to work, loaded with extra sugar and other unhealthy ingredients, or are even dangerous.

Hopefully this helps answer questions related to protein in a young athlete’s diet. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask your coaches!

GriffinSTRONG Sprint Eliminator and Scholarship Winners

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GriffinSTRONG Sprint Eliminator
Many thanks to all who made Wednesday night a fun event. Special thanks to our officials who made the event run smoothly: Phil Van Law, Carol Nasser, Mingfu Zhang, Karina Wood and Jeff Croston. Mark Heydt, Meet Director, is truly the King of Fun! He thought of the "BOOM! Cakes" as prizes for the winning relay teams! Way to go, Mark! Even the man who made "BOOM" a household word got in on the fun.
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GriffinSTRONG Scholarship Winners
The meet is named in honor of Donna Griffin, and her spirit now lives on not only in name but in legacy. Trish Melcher, Donna's sister, awarded 4 members of the class of 2019 with $1,500 scholarships in Donna's name. Alexis Redford and Teagan Haberkorn were presented with their scholarship checks at the Sprint Eliminator.

Travel Reimbursement/LC Championship Plans

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    Short Course Travel Reimbursement

    For athletes who attended Junior Nationals, Sectionals and/or Husky Invitational, be sure to complete the Colorado Swimming travel reimbursement form (click HERE) before April 15. Athletes must have completed a minimum of 15 individual events in Colorado Swimming open meets (Suburban League and high school meets do not apply) during the 2017-18 season. Families are responsible for applying for Colorado Swimming funding.

    Athletes who attended Junior Nationals should request funding for Junior Nationals only. These athletes will also be eligible for additional reimbursement through the Western Zone as well as the Suburban League (HRA will apply for these funds and credit the athletes' accounts).

    Athletes who attended Husky Invite and/or Sectionals may apply for 'at-large' funding provided they achieved a minimum of a Futures Championship qualifying time. These athletes will also be eligible for additional reimbursement through the Suburban League (HRA will apply for these funds and credit the athletes' accounts).

    Long Course Travel/Championship Plans

    Having achieved Bronze Medal status and won Sectional level team championships two years running, our athletes have proven their ability to compete with the best teams in the nation. We will continue to progress individually and collectively only by continuing to seek top level competition. In many cases, this means we have to seek out that competition as we do not have the luxury of hosting major meets in our state.

    We also want to provide at least one opportunity for all our athletes to compete together. With multiple qualifying meets in December and August, high school seasons November through May, and our college athletes returning to campus in August, our best opportunity is the mid-July window.

    Lastly, we hope to provide each individual athlete three distinct opportunities each season:

    The opportunity to compete where they will one of the better athletes and must learn how to prepare for prelims AND finals;

    The opportunity to challenge themselves in a meet where they will gain exposure to the next level of competition; and,

    The opportunity to be right in the mix to learn to be on point in the preliminary sessions.
    In keeping with past seasons, we expect athletes to plan for the following schedule:

    All qualifying athletes should attend LA Invite in July.

    Athletes are expected to finish their season at the highest level meet for which they qualify individually (Junior Nationals, Futures, Age Group Zones or the 13&O LC State Championships).

    If athletes wish to attend the Mel Zajac Int'l (National) or San Antonio (Sectional/Senior) Meet in June, they are encouraged to do so. However, we would prefer it to be in addition to the opportunities above rather than in place of one or both. (More on this below)

    There are a couple caveats to these recommendations:
    The Junior National Championships begin Tuesday, July 31, one week earlier than last year. This year's championship meet will concurrently with the Futures Championships.

    It is important for graduating senior athletes to train and compete at a high level this summer. I have never seen an athlete see success competing at the NCAA level without a good summer season prior to their freshman year. Alex R and Patricia V L are testaments to this. These athletes should therefore discuss with the coaches a schedule which provides them the best opportunity to contribute to their team as freshmen.

    The 13&O LC State Championships in Thornton is scheduled for the week following the LA Invite. The State meet will once again be conducted over three days with relays run during the preliminary sessions on Sat/Sun. We will therefore NOT be sending our Junior National/Futures qualifiers to participate in relays. Our State qualifiers will populate our relays.

    Championship Meet Travel Plans

    Please do not make travel plans until you discuss your athlete(s)' schedule(s) with the coaching staff. The information provided below is for planning purposes once based upon those discussions.

    Mel Zajac Jr. International Swim Meet
    2018 Meet Dates: Fri, June 1 thru Sun, June 3
    Site: UBC Aquatic Center, Vancouver, BC, Canada

    This is an international level meet to prepare our National group athletes for the Junior National Championships later in the summer. With the recruiting process for the top collegiate programs accelerating, it is more even important for our athletes to be prepared for elite competition as soon as possible.

    If National group athletes wish to attend the Mel Zajac Int'l they are encouraged to do so. However, we would prefer it to be in addition to LA Invite and State/Futures/Juniors rather than in place of one or both.

    Flight Information
    Departure: Thu, May 31 - WS 1571/133; DEN 1:25pm - YVR 5:55pm (thru YYC)
    Return: Mon, Jun 4 - WS 112/1570; YVR 6:00am - DEN 12:40pm (thru YYC)

    George Block Invitational
    Tentative 2018 Meet Dates: Thu, June 21 thru Sun, June 24
    Site: NISD Swim Center and Natatorium, San Antonio, TX

    2018 Meet Info is not yet available. The meet is a Prelim/Final format at one of the best aquatic facilities in the country. This is a parent directed meet. All flight, hotel, local transportation and meal arrangements will be the responsibility of attending families.

    If Sectional/Senior group athletes wish to attend the George Block Invitational they are encouraged to do so. However, we would prefer it to be in addition to LA Invite and State/Futures/Juniors rather than in place of one or both.

    Los Angeles Invitational
    2018 Meet Dates: Thu, July 12 through Sun, July 15
    Site: Uytengsu Aquatics Center, Univ. of Southern California

    2018 Meet Info is not yet available. A reminder this is a "make one, swim three" meet. This means athletes qualified in a single event may enter up to two bonus events, athletes qualified in two events may enter one bonus event, and athletes qualified in three or more events may NOT enter any bonus events. Also note altitude adjusted times are used for this meet. The times listed in the Deck Pass app reflect these adjustments.

    Flight Information
    Departure: Wed, Jul 11 - SWA 1714; DEN 12:45pm - LAX 2:20pm
    Return: Mon, Jul 16 - SWA 2242; LAX 11:05am - DEN 2:35pm

    CSI 13&O Long Course State Championships
    2018 Meet Dates: Fri, July 20 through Sun, July 22
    Site: Veterans Memorial Aquatic Center, Thornton, CO

    Athletes attending Junior Nationals or Futures should NOT plan to participate. Athletes attending the Age Group Zone Championship should plan to attend all three days.

    Junior National Championships
    Junior National Championship Meet Info
    2018 Meet Dates: Tue, July 31 through Sat, August 4
    Site: William Wollett Aquatic Center, Irvine, CA

    This is the true 18&U national championship. Please speak with the caching staff before making plans to attend this meet. Qualifying athletes may swim in up to two bonus events, provided they have achieved the published Bonus Event Time Standards. We have already qualified one medley relay for the meet. We may include relay only athlete(s) as necessary/desired.

    Tentative Flight Information
    Departure: Mon, Jul 30 - SWA 2479; DEN 8:15am - SNA 9:45am
    Return: Sun, Aug 5 - SWA 3202; SNA 7:45am - DEN 11:10am
    Return plans may be flexible based on athletes' final events.

    Futures Championships
    Futures Championships Meet Info
    2018 Meet Dates: Thu, August 2 through Sun, August 5
    Site: Rochester Recreation Center, Rochester, MN

    Futures is the second step in USA Swimming's national progression. Please speak with the caching staff before making plans to attend this meet. Similar to the LA Invite, Futures is a "make one, swim three" meet. This means athletes qualified in a single event may enter up to two bonus events, athletes qualified in two events may enter one bonus event, and athletes qualified in three or more events may NOT enter any bonus events.

    Tentative Flight Information
    Departure: Wed, Aug 1 - SWA 1169; DEN 11:35am - MSP 2:30pm
    Return: Mon, Aug 6 - SWA 2418; MSP 9:10am - DEN 10:15am

    Age Group Zones
    Western Zone Age Group Championship Meet Info
    2018 Meet Dates: Wed, August 8 through Sat, August 11
    Site: Roseville Aquatics Complex, Roseville, CA

    This meet is restricted to 14&U athletes only (age determined as of first day of the competition). The selection process will be based on performance in meets only through July 1. If you are undecided on whether to plan for this meet, please discuss with the coaching staff.

    Long Course Travel Reimbursement

    In order to participate, athletes must compete in 15 individual events from April 2-August 31 AND 30 individual event entries from September 1-August 31 in Colorado Swimming open meets (Suburban League, high school and dual/tri-meets do not count towards this total). Summer Junior National attendees receive 2.5-3.5 shares form the travel fund up to a maximum of $700, while Futures attendees receive 1.5-2.5 shares up to a maximum of $350.

    Athletes attending only the Los Angeles Invitational may request 'at-large' funding provided they meet a minimum of one Futures Championship qualifying time at the competition.

    Suburban League: Athletes MUST attend the Suburban League Pentathlon to be eligible for Suburban League funding. Athletes are eligible to receive $200 for participating in Junior Nationals and $150 for participating in the Futures Championships.

    Again, we will request funding for athletes attending only the Los Angeles Invitational provided they meet a minimum of one Futures Championship qualifying time at the competition.

Team Records

HRA athletes broke ten individual team records and three relay records this fall:

Natalie Arky - Open 200 Backstroke
Kate Baker - 13-14 200 Freestyle
Holley Dennis - 15-16 100 Breaststroke, Open 100 Breaststroke
Dominic Griffin - Open 1650 Freestyle
Gavin Rogers - 13-14 1000/1650 Freestyle & 400 IM
Delaney Smith - Open 200 IM
Wentao Zhang - 15-16 200 Breaststroke

Open Women's 200 Free Relay - Elsa Litteken, Delaney Smith, Jessie Beckwith, Parker Henry
Open Women's 400 Medley Relay - Natalie Arky, Holley Dennis, Jessie Beckwith, Delaney Smith
Open Men's 400 Medley Relay - Trevor Van Law, Wentao Zhang, Jack Clouatre, Dominic Griffin


AmazonSmile Program and Painless Fundraising

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As we inch closer to the holiday season, did you know all of your Amazon purchases can make a difference? AmazonSmile donates to HRA, a non-profit organization, when you do your shopping at It’s the same Amazon (same products and service as your regular Amazon account), but when you purchase on the Amazon Smile site, they give back .5% of your purchase to HRA. Thanks for your support!

Scrip Program Registration

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Scrip Opportunities

Scrip Gift Cards
Only twice a year we allow the purchase of the plastic gift cards, instead of e-cards only. Beginning April 20, you can order plastic gift cards with your PrestoPay account. There are also small denominations cards this time of year for teacher appreciation week, end of year school gifts and more! Some cards offered by Scrip only come in plastic so now is the time to stock up for vacation options, restaurants, Mother’s Day purchases, summer projects and many others. The window for ordering will be April 20-25. Delivery of cards will be communicated directly with those who ordered on May 1.

Please contact Amanda Ford with any questions.

We wanted to send out information on our Scrip fundraising program for HRA. We rolled this program out last year and will again be using Shop with Scrip. For those that enrolled last year, it has been an easy way to offset the $40 fee each month. And remember, you can earn over $40 and it will be applied to your general account.

Scrip is simply a word that means “substitute money” – in other words, scrip is gift certificates from national and local retailers. They’re the same gift certificates that you buy at the store. Many popular retailers participate in our scrip program including Safeway, Starbucks, Athleta, AMC Theaters, Red Robin, Home Depot, Noodles & Co, Target and many, many others.

You’re probably asking yourself how these stores help us raise money. It’s simple -- scrip participating retailers agree to sell gift certificates to our organization and reward you with a rebate. Member families buy the certificates for full face value, they redeem them for full face value, and our group keeps the rebate as revenue. Since we are doing e-cards (no plastic cards except at December), you can purchase on your schedule and you don’t need to coordinate with me to exchange money. Just a few of the benefits:

You get a powerful fundraising alternative that involves no selling!

Use scrip for items that you are already spending money on.

Your child defrays the cost of their $40 monthly fundraising dues.

The beauty of scrip is that you put your regular household shopping dollars to work. You earn money for your child’s swimming expenses without spending an additional penny. Just spend your regular shopping dollars with scrip at the stores that participate in the scrip program! And scrip can be used for just about any household purchase including food, clothing, entertainment, travel, gasoline and dining out.

All money earned with scrip purchases will go to our HRA account. Each month, HRA will distribute 50% of your earnings to you and will retain 50% for the team. Example: Purchase a $100 card from Athleta with a 14% rebate. You pay and receive a $100 e-card, then $7 will be retained by the team and $7 will be credited to your account in TeamUnify.

Please feel free to email me with any additional questions you may have. The attached files explain the program, give you the enrollment code you need to get started, tell you what “PrestoPay” is and how to register, and how to add “MyScripWallet” to your smart phone for super easy and almost instant access to gift cards. There are also many training videos on that walk you through the process. Once you get set up, using scrip is simple!

We will be at the Pancake Breakfast to answer any questions you may have.

Thank you!
Amanda Ford

Snapbooster Update

Effective with your December Snaps (lots of holiday receipts), if you consistently participate in the SnapBooster fundraiser, it will start putting money back in your pocket. It is as easy as "snapping" at least 50 eligible receipts per month and once you reach 50 snaps, 50% of what you earn each month will be credited to your HRA account. Your "snap" amount will reset at zero each month and will not carry over to the next month.

It can be done!!! Just ask the Hutter and Clouatre families. They reached 50 "snaps" in November!! Thank you!!!!

These 3 Easy Step Will Change Your Mind:
Buy - Buy what you normally buy from where you normally buy it
Snap - Text a picture of your receipt to SnapBooster phone number 248-246-7627.
Earn - Earn .10 - 10% for HRA from every receipt you send it

It is that easy!!! Register now with the program code HRA14.

Once registered, send your snaps to 248-246-7627.

If you are already signed up for SnapBooster with HRA, please start snapping again to a NEW number 248-246-7627. You do not need to include "Snap" in you texts anymore.

If you are a new HRA team member or did not participate, please see the attached link an information on how to get started.

Here is a video that shows the process.

If you have any questions, please contact Laura Nelson and she will help you get started. We encourage 100% participation in this year around fundraiser. It is easy as shopping where you already shop, taking a picture of your receipt and earning money for HRA!!!! Please see the flyer attached below explaining how the program works.

King Soopers Fundraising Update

Reminder – the King Soopers Card program has changed

As you may have heard, King Soopers is updating their fundraising program effective April 1. Generating KS rewards is now even easier! Families can link their King Soopers loyalty card to Highlands Ranch Aquatics, and King Soopers will DONATE a portion of the total amount spent on qualified items each quarter directly to our team. Click the link for directions on how to register your account. For more details and answers to your questions, such as, "What do I do with my current card?" please reach out to Shannon Wehr with questions.

REGISTER NOW It is so easy…


Community Rewards from left

PICK our team using code KU 696 or Highlands Ranch Aquatics

ENROLL…that’s it!

USA Swimming's Scholastic All-America Team

USA Swimming annually recognizes excellence in and out of the pool by naming a Scholastic All-America Team. Eligible athletes must have completed 10th grade or higher, achieved a minimum 3.5 unweighted GPA in the academic year, and swum one time equal to or better than the Winter Junior National time standard.

Three HRA athletes have been recognized for the 2015-16 academic year, tied for the most honorees of any Colorado swim club. Congratulations to:

Alex Reddington - 1st time honoree
Claire State - 2nd time honoree
Patricia Van Law - 1st time honoree

Registration/Volunteer Information

For families unable to attend last night's meeting, please see the highlights below:

Returning families must resolve outstanding account balances before you will be able to register for 2016-17.

All families must complete the registration process (including all signature pages) before your athlete(s) will be permitted to participate in HRA practices.

Please take some time to review the information packet. A number of items have been revised this season including:
Group structures/expectations (White-Silver-Red-State)
Financial policies regarding consequences for unpaid dues
Policies regarding fines for missing volunteer shifts
A new social media policy

By popular demand, HRA has now created the ability to allow families to directly debit from your checking accounts monthly via online check. If you opt into this service, you will automatically be charged $1.25 per transaction as a convenience fee (that charge is passed on to TeamUnify). You will, however, avoid any late charges in the future.

Parent Volunteer Info

HRA also requires the assistance of parents to help direct fundraisers, officiate or time meets, or to serve in other capacities vital to the club's ongoing operations. We would like to have EVERY family indicate their volunteer preferences so we can have all areas filled and communicate instructions as soon as possible.

Please see the volunteer activity selection form attached below. Instruction are on the top of the page. Please complete the form and send it via email to Jeanne LaRiviere by Thursday, September 15. Placements will be distributed by end of the month.

HRA High School Participation Philosophy By EF

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    My first guidance for all our athletes is they must meet the requirements of their high school program. Each high school coach sets their own expectations for practice and meet attendance. Much as in our program, an athlete is expected to meet those requirements in order to participate. The guidance from high school coaches is generally to attend 100% of their practices and meets.

    We do not want HRA athletes trying to please multiple masters. We have seen our athlete's bury themselves physically (and likely fall behind academically) trying to keep up with high school and HRA practices at the same time. Similarly, athlete's will be racing more than ever before during high school season. We do not feel it is advantageous to add more meets to that requirement.

    If/when we have 3-day meets, athletes must be selective in participation. High school events are skewed towards the shorter distances. It is valuable to participate in some of the 200/400 events not on the usual high school event schedule. However, this often means swimming through a scheduled off day. For example, athlete's may be required to participate in high school practices/dual meets M-F, swim an invitational on Sat. If an athlete then swims an HRA meet on Sun, she/he goes straight through two weeks without any days off. In this case, the high school program assumes the athlete will be getting a day off on Sunday. We assume our athletes will get an off day on Monday. These are the situations we need to manage carefully.

    In short, there is no guidebook other than for athlete's and their families to make decisions in the best interest of the athlete's goals. Hope this helps!
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    New Far Western Qualifying Times
    Abbey Gardner - 50 Backstroke
    Emma Harper - 400 IM
    Mai Kawahata - 200 Breaststroke
    Mary Hoover - 200 Free

    Silver State Champions
    Jack Bakke - 50 Breaststroke
    Abbey Gardner - 50 Backstroke
    Shepard Kerscher - 50 Freestyle
    Ceyda Sarak - 100 Breaststroke
    Ethan Viescas - 50 Fly
    James Wood - 100 Breaststroke

    Top 3 Silver State Finishers
    Abbey Gardner - 2nd 100 IM
    Grace Gardner - 2nd 100 Fly
    Mary Hoover - 2nd 200 Free
    Mai Kawahata - 2nd 200 Breaststroke
    Sheparrd Kerscher - 3rd 100 IM, 3rd 200 IM
    Mila Nikanorov - 3rd 100 Backstroke
    Cade Rolofson - 3rd 100 Fly
    Ethan Viescas - 3rd 100 Fly

    Top 10 Silver State Finishers
    Dylan Armour - 9th 50 Fly, 9th 50 Backstroke, 10th 100 Backstroke, 10th 100 Fly
    Jack Bakke - 4th 100 Breaststroke, 4th 100 IM, 5th 100 Fly, 6th 500 Free
    Caroline Clouatre - 5th 200 Breaststroke
    Grace Gardner - 4th 100 Breaststroke
    Aubrey Hutter - 4th 50 Breaststroke
    Shepard Kerscher - 5th 100 Backstroke
    Alyssa Leven - 10th 100 Breaststroke
    Mary Macaulay - 9th 100 Fly, 9th 100 Backstroke
    Mila Nikanorov - 3rd 100 Backstroke, 9th 500 Freestyle
    Cade Rolofson - 9th 200 IM
    Amaia Sherman - 7th 50 Breaststroke
    Ethan Viescas - 8th 200 IM
    James Wood - 7th 100 Fly

Trial Preparation

Our National group is scheduled to train and stay at the Olympic Training Center from Wednesday, October 14 through Saturday, October 17. Our first practice is scheduled from 5-7pm on Wednesday with the camp ending with practice 9-11am on Saturday. We strongly encourage athletes to plan to attend the entire camp.

The cost of the trip will be $270 per athlete and will include lodging, meals and training expenses. Please reply with your intention to attend by Friday, September 11.

Sunday Long Course Training

We will offer long course practices on select Sunday mornings this fall and winter. The plan is to use this time in place of normal Saturday morning practices. 'National Plus' group athletes will have weight training from 8-9am on Saturday, but will have the day off from swimming training.

Thus far, we have scheduled dates on Sept 20, 27 and Oct 11 from 9-11am at DU. We will announce future dates as they become available.

There will be no additional expenses associated with these practices other than potential parking fees. However, there are three stipulations associated with participation:

Athletes must have achieved Futures qualifying time standards

Athletes must attend all scheduled Sunday practices

Athletes must discuss high school plans with me per the discussion above

We will discuss plans with the athletes over the next two weeks in anticipation of our first training opportunity.