Celebrating the overachiever in each of us.

Triathletes and competitive swimmers are a unique breed. We push hard. We know that "good" can always be better. We set ambitious goals, because we like the thrill of achieving them. In essence, we're all overachievers.

Overachiever's Diary celebrates the competitive drive of overachievers everywhere by chronicling the rigorous swim training methods of some of the greatest overachievers in the world—the West Point Cadets of the Army triathlon team. Their story is told through the informative, inspiring and often humorous emails of author and team swim coach Louis Tharp, a competitive swimmer, World Masters and Gay Games medalist. Under the direction of Coach Tharp and other coaches—and thanks to the determination of the cadets—the Army triathlon team, in 2007, took home an individual gold in Age Group Nationals, placed fifth overall in Collegiate Nationals, and earned a bronze medal in the ITU Worlds in Hamburg.

Overachiever's Diary also provides critical information and insights that will help any swimmer improve performance and increase confidence in the water. The book is organized into three sections:

  • Mechanics -- Provides tips and drills the Army team used to advance competitively. The workouts are detailed and geared to all proficiency levels, and are designed to replicate the triathlon environment by integrating with and supporting bike and run training.
  • Math -- Designed with the "mathlete" in mind, this section explains how to measure speed and efficiency, and how to establish empirical goals.
  • Motivation -- Includes a compilation of inspiring emails sent by Coach Tharp before major events.

The book also includes an introduction from Terry Laughlin, Coach Tharp's mentor and founder of Total Immersion swimming, the world's largest swim instruction organization and publisher of swimming books, as well as essays by psychologist Dr. Laurie J. Ferguson, Ph.D, that delve into the psychological aspects of peak performance.

Above all, Overachiever's Diary reflects a coaching approach that is unique, and in many ways as unorthodox as it is successful. In the words of Coach Tharp, "It's not about mindless sets, pull buoys or kickboards. Triathletes and competitive swimmers are smarter than that. Overachiever's Diary is about testing psychological and physical limits in the practice environment so you can achieve victory in competition."

A portion of the proceeds from Overachiever's Diary will be donated to the US Army tri team.