Saturday, June 6, 2015

Open Swim Season

I ventured out to the Longmont Union Reservoir this morning for my first open swim of the season. My first tri is all set up for next Saturday, and I wanted to head out to reassure myself that the open swim wasn't quite as scary as I remember. Unfortunately, my first lap in the water proved that open swimming actually IS pretty scary!! I did not react well to the murky, choppy lake water. Instead, I started to experience the same sense of panic that I remember from my triathlon start last year. Swallowing water, unable to breathe with any rhythm, I stopped myself to tread water and calm myself down. I finished the rest of the first lap just making sure that I didn't drown. A little breast stroke here, a lot of side stroke there, stop and tread water again, try the freestyle again, roll over and backstroke, just finish, just keep swimming, just keep swimming.

After I made it back to the beach, I was fairly certain that I didn't want to swim any more, and I was totally insane for signing up for any triathlon ever. But the fact is: I have three triathlons on my schedule this year. They're already paid for and I'm committed to doing them. So I swam a second lap. This one wasn't quite as bad. No stopping to tread water this time, but still a lot of random strokes just to get me around the buoys. At least this time around, every other swimmer didn't feel the need to ask me if I was ok...

By time I made it back to the beach the second time, I felt fairly certain that I was done for the day. Then I made myself do one more lap, and I am so glad that I did. Lap number three was much slower than I'm used to, but it was more consistent and less scary. I felt good that I was able to find a bit of a groove before I left the lake today, so that I know a little bit better what will work for me this Saturday. Slow and steady is the method I prefer, so I just need to remember that when the gun goes off, and not let myself get too riled up right away.

Probably easier said than done, but we'll see...

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