Rough Waters……In the Pool?

Now that summer is officially in full swing, the local indoor pools have moved toward summer hours.  This means the  pools are packed all the time when they are open with swim lessons,

Swim Lessons_kids

Master Swimmers & Triathletes,

swimmer_masters men

And then me, trying to find a spot somewhere in between.

swimming cartoon girl

I don’t consider myself to be a “swimmer”, which I’m sure many of you can understand.  How long was it that you were running before you considered yourself a “runner”?  I always say that anyone who runs is  runner regardless of distance or pace.  Therefore, I should probably consider myself a swimmer.  It just seems like such a stretch. 

I’m a triathlete, that I own.  I swim because of triathlon.  When I’m not in season, I don’t go to the pool.  When I’m pregnant, I don’t go to the pool.  When I’m injured which is a rarity, I don’t go to the pool.  I only go to the pool when I’m in season and trust me, I’ll push it off as looooooong as possibly before I haul myself in for a workout.  I don’t dislike swimming, it’s just inconvenient.  I can’t do it at home and I have to physically go somewhere, during hours which they are open, in order to participate.  Not easy.  I am heading to work when most people are meeting for an “early”  5:30 or 6am run or swim.  The pool doesn’t even open before I have to start showering and getting ready for work, so I have to steal time out of my day to make it happen. 

Yesterday, I stole time from the family, hit the pool when it reopened at 5pm and squeezed into a lane between a couple Michael Phelps looking fellows,

michael-phelps      michael-phelps_swimming

a normal looking dude swimming with a pull buoy, 4 ladies doing their exercises and about 50 kiddos who were conquering swim lessons.   Wow, was it rough in that pool.  I have swam in calmer waters during triathlon races in rain & thunderstorms.  The Phelps Brothers were tearing up the water, spitting water, kicking water and creating a current that felt slightly like an undertow.  Mr. Pull Buoy was swimming faster when he was actually swimming with is pull buoy than I can swim in a race.  He was even doing flip turns with that thing and making a good amount of commotion in his lane as well.  The noise from the coaches, the whistles, the kids was deafening.  I had water hitting my back coming from countless directions but I just kept swimming (say that again in Dory’s voice from Finding Nemo cuz that’s how I hear it in my head).  I just kept focusing on counting my laps.  And I just kept swimming and counting.  Pretty much all of the normal things I focus on like reaching, being smooth, breathing, etc. all of that was eliminated last night as it took 100% focus to just keep count and swim.  I did that for 88 laps, non-stop.  I assumed I was slower than the nice calm swim I had with Susan the other day but was surprised to see upon completion that I was actually faster.  48 minutes for 1.2 miles.  No flip turns for this non-fish, non-masters swimmer…….I just keep swimming.  And apparently, “just” swimming has its own benefits when one settles into a routine.

I’m feeling good.  I’ll never be able to keep up with the fasties in the pool but I know I can “just keep swimming” for as long as it takes to get out of the water.  At the end of the day, I’m okay with that.  If we just keep TRI-ing then we improve, its bound to happen.  Don’t get discouraged that you can’t run with the big dogs, just keep moving forward and TRI-ing.

** Keep TRI-ing ** Amanda – TooTallFritz ** amanda@tootallfritz.com

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7 thoughts on “Rough Waters……In the Pool?

  1. Due to my injury I decided to get in the pool. I do “ok” as long as the “Fasties” aren’t in the pool at the same time. Then what I feel is my good swimming form goes all to heck and I become super intimidated and just know they are watching me, laughing. When this injury first started I was all, “I’m gonna turn this into a chance to TRI.” Eh, yeah. We’ll see. The pool still makes me feel less than adequate in my ability to be athletic at all. It reminds me of the days when I was first a runner.

  2. Well you are doing better than me and I’m in a master swim class! I have a 800 meter swim in a tri in 2 weeks. I’m freaking out about it! You sound like you are doing great on your own. Just keep swimming swimming swimming.

    • I’ve never taken lessons, or swam on a team. I just keep swimming. :o) I remember when I started for my first TRI in 2006ish, I couldn’t swim more than one length of the pool. I crawl one length, then breast stroke with my head out of the water the next length. I’ve come a long way and I’m pretty happy.

  3. Nice post TTF…swimming…dreaded swimming. I tried in HS to do that flip-turn-thing and it was always this vertigo feeling that ensued and water up the nose. Don’t know how they do it. If I was in that pool I would have been in the lane with the kiddies using the noodles and those boards! Really…I understand the dilemma…and simply why I don’t put the motivation and effort to pursue swimming….gotta go somewhere where there is a pool…and that usually means joining something and paying noticeable bucks. So…I just settle for riding a bike or running! Hey…maybe when the FN’ runners get bigger and more of them interested in triathalons, maybe you can find sponsors to help fund building a swim facility in your backyard! I think you got enough land for a 100-m pool…right? Gotta dream big!

    • LOL! I’d love to drop a big pool in my back yard. we have the space, not the funds. 🙂

      I start to enjoy the swim about half way thru, possibly becuase I’m then counting down instead of up!

  4. i guess its great training for future triathalons? I really have every intention of learning to swim (i cant even dead-float!) But those busy pools terrify me way too much!

  5. Pingback: Pool Running for Optimal Training and Rehabilitation | TRIbook

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