December 3, 2008

Swimming... Sort Of

It's funny how it takes so long to build up the ability to do something well, but takes only a fraction of that time to get knocked back to where you started. When you start running, a mile or two is absolute agony. Then eventually it takes that long just to get warmed up. You start seeing a 6 or 7 mile run as a daily thing. Swimming is the same. I used to be gasping at the wall after a few laps, then got to the point where I felt I could swim forever. Then my accident kept me out of the pool long enough to pretty much eliminate much of what I had been able to learn.

I've committed to swimming at least 16 times in the month of December as part of one of my BT challenges. I have the use of my left arm again, albeit uncomfortably, so there really are no more excuses. I swam a mile broken into a few sets - 200, 250, 450 and 900. It's always rough at the beginning and by the 450 I was feeling pretty comfortable. But my balance remains way off and I cannot swim straight no matter how hard I try. It's a good thing I wasn't sharing a lane. I'm that idiot that I used to curse back in the summer for swimming all over the place.

My pool has windows that face South and with the sun lower in the sky for winter, there was direct light shining right in the middle of the pool so in the middle of every length, I swam through this amazing beam of light. I really loved it and looked forward to swimming through it each time. It made the time fly by.

In addition to getting back into the water, I had another big first today - I rode a bike outside for the first time since my crash on August 10. I decided to ride to the pool to save time and took the old road bike out. It was in the low 30s so I bundled up as much as possible, but I still froze. How the heck to people ride in the winter? I was relieved that I felt comfortable on the bike and had absolutely no hesitation. I'm sure a longer ride at higher speeds will be a little intimidating, but I was out there in NYC traffic and felt completely at ease. It gave me hope.

Distance - 1,800 yards
Time - 38:58

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