I know I can run and I am pretty sure I can ride a bike okay (at least if I am not going over hills or riding down a busy road), but the swimming thing is a bit iffy. When I went to the pool a few weeks ago to swim laps (which I hadn’t done in over 8 years), I was concerned that the lifeguards were going to jump in after me since I know it must have looked like I was drowning. Well, I decided to try again a few days ago. I think it went much better than expected, but not as great as I had hoped.
So, I bought myself a pair of swimming goggles since I had no idea where I had put mine (I did mention it has been over 8 years, right??). Last time I swam laps I used my husband’s goggles and I just couldn’t get them to fit right. Water kept entering and I kept stopping to pull them off. Much better this time. They fit perfectly and kept the water out the entire time.
As we arrived at the pool I noticed that all of the lap lanes were full. It looked like some high school team had taken over the lap lanes and I was left with one section of the pool that was open… it didn’t have any floating lane lines (or whatever those things are called). My husband just told me I could swim there, but I was concerned that I wouldn’t be able to swim in a straight line and that I would bump into the dude who was currently swimming there. Then I saw some kid at one end and I could only imagine him walking in front of me and messing up my rhythm (because I thought I was going to have some kind of rhythm). But I didn’t have any other choice so I sat on edge of the pool and dipped my feet in. The water was cold. I soooo hate cold water. I can spend the day with the water at my waist if it is too cold for me to get in all the way. I kind of needed to get in all the way this time, though, if I wanted to swim laps. The initial contact was a shock, but I warmed up within the first minute. I figured it was good motivation for me to just keep moving.
One out-and-back lap done and I was feeling pretty good. I actually thought that maybe my form had improved since last time, but I can never be sure since I always thought I had good running form and we all know that isn’t the case. At least I didn’t feel like I was drowning and that all eyes were on me. That’s an improvement. I kept swimming from one side of the pool and stopping at the wall to push off. I have no idea how to do one of those flip turns and I have no desire to learn how to do it. It is not like I will be flip-turning in a lake (but I also have to remember that I will not have a wall to hold onto either). My breathing was kind of similar to a person who is hyperventilating, but I just tried to focus on moving my arms and legs. I can’t do everything all at once! It only reminded me of the time when I was learning how to fix my poor running form. I was supposed to slightly lean forward, shorten my stride, keep my arms from moving to much, relax my shoulders and count cadence. Sure. Whatever.
Well, I did learn that when you are swimming there is not much else to do, but swim. And think. There is really nothing to look at and it is not like you can wear headphones and listen to music. All you see is water, a black line, a white wall and maybe some bright colors that pop up sporadically when the person swimming next to you is wearing a funky speedo. All you hear is water sloshing in your ears and the muffled sound of kids yelling or whistles blowing. And people say running is boring?
I was relieved when I finally passed lap 6. That was the furthest I had gotten last time. My goal was to do 10 full laps. It had to be at least half a mile. If I could do that then I would be set for doing a half mile during the triathlon. So, I kept it up until I reached lap 10. I got out of the pool all proud of myself and told my husband how many laps I had done (without stopping of course). I asked him how far a half mile would be. He started making some calculations in his head and replied with the number 17. 17 laps?? Those 10 took me 15 minutes. That would mean I would have to do nearly a half an hour of swimming? It just didn’t sound right. I guess I didn’t believe him so I went home and used google to convert yards to miles. Sure enough, he was right. I felt slightly defeated. Now I need to go back to the pool to swim farther and faster!