A New Direction
Within the past 36 hours I have decided to take my fitness in a new direction. As far as the classic athletic talents go I have basically been nothing but a runner my whole life. I have enjoyed the occasional kick boxing video with Billy Blanks, a few rounds of Buns of Steel, and of course a day or two spent with Darren’s Dance Grooves. All of this has been accompanied by a faithful yoga practice over the last several years as well. But now, now I head in a new direction all together.
I am officially registered for the 18th Annual Lincoln City Triathlon Sprint! That means by Sept 7th I need to be able to swim 1/2 a mile, bike 10 miles, and run 3.1 miles in consecutive order. Again, I have never been more than a runner, don’t own a bike and so now its training time.
TRAINING DAY ONE: Swimming
Sure I can swim. I mean I can keep myself from drowning in a pool and have a great time splashing around in rivers and lakes. But all of that aquatic activity involves resting….a lot.
On to the pool at my local gym for my first day ever of swimming training. I got to the pool and it was full. Luckily I correctly assumed that I could sit and wait for a lane to open up, of course I first tried to wait while sitting on the stairs of the pool but that only made me cold so I ended up on the edge of the hot tub with my blue borrowed goggles in hand. I would even fiddle with them some and be sure they were set out next to me in clear view of passers by so that they would know that Yes I actually was waiting for a lane.
It may have been hard for the strong and committed swimmers there to know that I was serious about joining in on the lap swim and for good reason. While all of the other swimmers were decked out in their mens speedo suits and the women in their black or navy racer back one piece speedo suits I was in my most athletic looking red and white polka dot bikini.
With my hair pulled up into a bun on the top of my head one man shouted “Over here” and it was my turn. I gingerly stepped into the pool, since now my feet are that comfortable yet scalding hot temperature from the hot tub. I get to my lane and wanted so badly to just throw on my goggles and take off. But of course they didn’t fit and the first three times I tried to start swimming with my head underwater they immediately filled up with water and back to the starting wall it was.
At last, the goggles are on and adjusted, my feet and body have settled in and are comfortable with the water temp and I’m off like sea cucumber. I was the slowest swimmer in the pool hands down. But I did it! I swam for a total of 20 minutes with 5 minutes on then a 45 sec break for four reps. By race time I need to at least double my distance in close to the same amount of time.
I looked completely ridiculous and was as exhausted as if I had run 8 hot miles. Still, I felt proud of my new accomplishment and grateful that at least I got to be in the lane next to the old guy with the snorkel.