Wednesday, January 12, 2011

One Year in, How's the Swimming Going?

So it is pretty much one year since I signed up for Adult Stroke Improvement Swimming Lessons at Centennial Pool. Stroke Improvement is a funny term, at least for me. I mean, could you really improve my dog paddling technique anymore? I think not. And as I had no other significant stokes to improve, this was simply swimming lessons for adults. I thank Val for getting me on the right track with 10 great lessons. And I thank almost all the other students in the class for dropping out and giving my so much more student and teacher time.

I came out of that class with a great breast stroke, pretty decent back stroke and a mediocre front crawl. But still, I could swim and not look a fool doing it (well by beach standards not triathlon standards).  It felt great and I kicked myself for not having taken lessons sooner.

While I could actually swim now, I still lacked two thing. Comfort in the water and any endurance. Comfort was my first major challenge, as it means that I can't swim for long since I am dragging my non supple body and sinking legs. It is something I am still working on but getting there leaps and bounds. And endurance? Well I started with rests after each lap, then after 2 laps and then sets of 4 laps. It has been a great progression.

Last summer I wanted to do a triathlon to complement my duathlons. I knew I couldn't do 750 meters so I opted for a try a tri or super sprint style event. Only 400 meters to swim. I think it took me about 9 minutes and I had to breast stroke the whole way. But I survived and was happy to have gotten that out of the way.

Now I try my best to get to the pool twice a week, once a week for sure. My endurance and comfort are growing. Last night I swam front crawl for 400 meters straight with no rests (I still don't flip turn so i do have to stop and turn around). It took me probably 8 minutes or so, probably 1 minute faster than my Super Sprint from last summer. And that was a slightly easy pace designed to allow me to get much more distance in, not "race pace." So I was over the moon.

I continued on last night to swim 1550 meters or 62 laps in around 50 minutes with a few 10 second rests here or there and 150 meters of kick drills with my new fins. I think during that first 30 minute of lesson one year ago I managed to swim 150 meters total.

here's looking forward to seeing what this year's swimming will bring.
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