Monday, August 2, 2010

My first Masters' Swim

This morning was my first swim with the Masters' team. In this case, master just means old...not good. At least not in my case. I've been dreading this day for a long time, but I know my swimming just won't improve much on its own.

I got up this morning around 5:30, dreading what was to come. I arrived at the gym before it opened and was in the pool by 6:02. There were only 3 of us there. Two guys and me. By 7:00, there were around 8 swimmers. The coach asked me how far I could swim without dying. I said, "About 500 yards." Then he told me to do a 400 yard warm up. What? A 400 yard warm up? That's normally my entire swim! After I completed that, he had me start doing drills to work on rotating my body as I swim. I'm not an efficient swimmer because I tend to swim "flat," meaning I don't rotate my body as I stroke, thus, my arms are working really hard without much strength from the rest of my body. This makes me slow and will kill my times and my arms down the road. He also had me spend some time working on my turns on the end of the lane. I used to be able to do this, though it's always been ugly.

Then, after the warm up and the drills, he decided it was time to try to figure out my pace. I was so tired at this point! I swam a 200, a 100 and a 50 at a comfortable pace while he timed me. It seemed like I was going super slowly! When I finished, he told me I swam at a 2:05/100 yard pace and finished with, "that's interesting." What's interesting? I don't know anything about swim paces. Was that so slow as to be interesting?

I got out of the pool after swimming for ONE HOUR! I've never gone that long before, with the exception of the Half-Ironman I did where I doggie paddled for part of it :) The coach told me I did a good job and that I was going to be fine. Pretty damn proud of myself!

When all was said and done, I swam 1550 yards today. I'm awesome!

Once I got home, I was determined to figure out what was interesting about my pace. Turns out, 2:05 min/100 yards isn't too bad. I think he was surprised I wasn't slower. Go me!

Here are the things I learned today:
1) I haven't been pushing myself in the pool.
2)Joining the Masters' team is the best athletic decision I've made.
3) It's not that scary.
4) I will improve. A lot!
5) I am capable of a lot more than I thought I was.

I was so tired this morning when I got home that I took a short nap before work. Nice!

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