Monday, June 4, 2012

Back in the Pool.....


Have I mentioned that Someone talked me into doing a Sprint Triathlon at the end of June?  (June 30 to be exact)

Have I mentioned that I'm still out of shape?  June 30 has just seemed so far away for so long.  Until now.  I mapped it out on the calendar the other day and realized.... I better get my butt moving or I'm going to be a hurting unit come June 30!  (Okay, so I'll probably be a hurting unit anyway.....)

I've participated in two triathlons.  My first was a triathlon held near Ankeny.  It was a great sprint race (750 meter (0.47 mi) swim, 20 kilometres (12 mi) bike, 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) run) and provided me with motivation to do more triathlons.  So I trained for the Hy-Vee Tri, which was held the following summer.  Hy-Vee is an Olympic distance (1.5 kilometres (0.93 mi) swim, 40 kilometres (25 mi) bike ride, 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) run) so I was a bit more apprehensive and did much more extensive training.  I remember that training being difficult-- and draining of all my energy.  I couldn't ever seem to get enough to eat or sleep and I blamed it all on that dang training.

But the morning of the Triathlon, everything went well. Although my goggles were twisted and leaking and led me to Breaststroke the entire mile swim, I was too nervous and riding too fast to really use the Aerobars on my bike, and I pretty much bonked during the run, I still had a really good time and finished in 3 hours, 11 min.  I was psyched to do more and more and more!  I had race fever!


And then, the day after this lovely pre-race photo was taken, I peed on a stick and realized maybe the training was only a part of why I was so fatigued and hungry.  It turns out Mr. Charlie had been accompanying me on my training runs, rides, and swims, for about seven weeks.  (Okay, now honestly, I had an inkling.... but I knew I'd be too nervous to do the bike ride if I knew I was "with child" so I just chose one of my favorite ways to deal with things--- avoidance.)

So while I had race fever, I also had this huge new life event to look forward to.  I didn't feel comfortable road biking after I learned of my pregnancy (I'm a bit too  nervous about hitting the pavement), and running became something horribly painful as I dealt with a ton of sciatic and lower back pain throughout my pregnancy.  But swimming was the one thing that I did right up until the week before Charlie was born (unfortunately for the lifeguards on duty--I don't think any college kids want to see a hugely overdue pregnant lady waddle into their lap pool).

I've always loved to swim and feel sort of "at home" in the water.  I love the rhythm of lap swimming and the muffled sounds of the water.  I love the way your body heats up but the water stays cool.  I love the peaceful and "alone-ness" of lap swimming-- even if you participate with others, it's not like running or riding where conversation is possible and sometimes encouraged.  It's just you with your thoughts and the water.

So as this June 30 triathlon approaches, it dawned on me that I should probably get in the pool.  And today, the first day of lap swim at our outdoor pool, presented the perfect opportunity.  Since C is attending daycare a few hours each morning this summer (more about my guilt later) I'm really trying to take advantage of that evasive thing called "time".  So I headed down to the pool, jumped in, and swam a 500 (10 laps) with two warm-up/ cool down laps.

The sun was warm, the water was cool, and my muscles felt strong.  Everything about it felt amazing-- and it was just what I needed to become excited and energized about this race.  Back in the pool is a good place to be!

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