Ugh - the pool

Well as part of my quest for Ironman 2009 I have registered along with my hubby for Oliver Half Iron next June. (Gulp) To say I am a little anxious is the understatement if you read the first post you would know that my last attempt at a Half Ironman was less than spectacular. The whole thing did not go as I planned but the swim was the start of the unravel.

As a kid I loved swimming and thought I was pretty good at it. I took lessons, I was a volunteer lifeguard at the local pool and I swam all the time. Okay so I did not swim in races or with a club but I was in the pool or a lake constantly.

When I started doing triathlons I was not that concerned about the swim except to make sure I could swim the distance constantly without stopping and that was how I trained. Go to the pool get in the water and do lengths constantly equaling the distance for the race 3 times a week makes sense right – apparently not so much. I came to realize this when I entered a woman’s only triathlon and came out the pool I believe 102 out of 104. I recovered on the bike and run but this is where I discovered that there is more to swimming and that I needed help. I can swim forever I am just slow which I have now learned is because my form SUCKS. I am not very good so the big thing is going to be work on my technique so that I can finish before cut-off. Ironman is not going to let me say that is okay I am just going to keep going if I don't make cut-off so I need to get this sorted out.

Last fall I joined a Master’s and as expected I was at the back of the group. My goal at that time was to try and stay with the group but most importantly get to a point where I could swim 2km in under an hour. In a pool I can finish 2 km around 55 minutes open water still up in the air because the small allergy/asthma attack I came out at 1:07 – gosh it looks awful in print – so who knows if I can do it in regulation time or not but I now know I must always carry my inhaler and use it before swims. (Apparently they are not just to fill the bottom of my purse.)

I have been swimming once since the Iron Mountain Tri, preferring to ignore the sport for now and hope for a miracle but now that I have registered for Oliver I am forced back to the pool. I am optimistic that I will improve - we have a new coach and she actually interacts and provides advice and I do not seem to have lost too much fitness as I was able to stay with the group most of the time.

I am considering registering for private lessons but after talking with others I am not sure it is the best use of $ now I think a Stroke analysis clinic might be the way to go. It is all very ambiguous and confusing I did however renew my inhalers and promise I will start to use them – honestly- I did put them in my swim bag yesterday.


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