June 10, 2008

Ring Around.... My Eyes!!!

The passionate love affair with my new goggles came to an abrupt end this morning. Yes, they keep the water out and, amazingly, they don't fog too badly. Yes, I was able adjust them a bit better so my eyes don't feel like they are going to pop out any moment. However, after 40 minutes in the pool today, I slipped them off and headed into the locker room and, for the first time, I looked in the mirror before getting into the shower and was horrified by what I saw. I had HUGE red goggle rings around both eyes. I looked like some sort of insane masked villain only that was no mask, that was my face with quarter-inch indentations around my eyes. Hours later, the marks were still faintly there. I had to wear big, dark glasses in order to avoid frightening children and small dogs.

Raccoon eyes aside, today's swim was OK. I was definitely a bit rusty after the three-day hiatus so the first several laps were mostly just getting back into the rhythm. I tried to focus on glide to get further with less effort, which is great for the triathlon and keeps me from having to hang on the wall when I reach the end of the pool. When you watch videos of swimmers from under the water, they look so smooth and natural. This funny teaching DVD talks about "swimming like fishes" in this soothing, Bob Ross-like voice, how the right technique will get you to this smooth, natural movement. The only fish-like movement I seem to have adopted would be that of one flopping around out of water, gasping for air.

I did, however, have a realization today that was really good. When you lift your head to breathe, you often have a little water in your mouth, which at first, can catch you off guard and make you feel like you can't take a deep breath. I noticed today that I am getting a good, full breath even with water in my mouth so that's a baby step closer to getting more comfortable breathing properly.

To avoid the heat wave we're having in New York, I kept my second workout of the day indoors. Since starting training, I have barely been to the gym. I enjoy the real stuff so much more and especially love getting outside. But when it's pushing 100 degrees, the gym starts to look pretty good. To break up the monotony, I did a little bike/run workout where I did three sets of biking for 10 minutes, then running for 10 minutes. It made the hour fly by and kept the boredom mostly at bay, although I tuned out for a minute on the treadmill and almost went right off the back! That has never happened to me before and it gave me quite a jolt. If I had to admit I was injured because I flew off the back of a treadmill, that would trump any humiliation I've experienced at the pool.

Sport - Swimming
Distance - .5 miles
Time - 40:00

Sport - Bike/Run Sets (3 x 10/10)
Distance - Bike: 6.61 miles; Running: 3.21 miles
Time - 1:00:00 (30:00 biking; 30:00 running)

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