Monday, December 28, 2015

Christmas Day Swim

Since we had the time off work, I decided to swim on December 25th.  About five of the Notorious Alki Swimmers showed up, one for the first time.  Because it was both not a work day and not a Saturday, my husband joined and took some great photos.

That's us taking a pre-swim selfie.  You can always tell the "skin" swimmers because they are still wearing street clothes in the pre-swim photo.

Then we got in.

See how I appear to be shuddering in that photo.  Yeah. It was cold. But I swam.

I actually did more face-in swimming than the last time. The water was murky, so I couldn't see much.  And the waves were stronger than they appeared.  The tide was in, so they were hitting the seawall and coming back at me. And therefore there was a bit of a "dishwasher" effect.

But it was a beautiful day to be out!!  Water, approximately 50*.  Air 39*.  Time in the water- 20 min.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Skin swim!

Open water swimmers classify swims as "wetsuit" or "skin". Skin doesn't mean nothing but skin, a swimsuit, cap and goggles are still worn, but it means no wetsuit.  My wetsuit has a hole.  I tried to patch it this week, but I couldn't get the glue to hold.  I'm going to take it to the local tri store for a "professional" patch, but that will take a week. And I still wanted to swim.  So I decided to go in skin.

My goal was simply to get in the water, with a secondary goal of swimming for 10 min.  The air was 44 and water was 50. To add to the experience, it was raining, a steady Seattle winter rain.

I met the Notorious Alki Swimmers and announced my intention to go in skin for the first time.  Two of the regulars, J and J helped me figure it out.  I was struggling to not cuss, so J suggested I just shout it out.  A yelled F*** actually helped a lot. I walked around for maybe 10 min or so, then too the plunge and started swimming, aided by another set of f.f.f.f.f.f.f.s.

I was able to swim to the first set of stairs.  Then felt like I could go further, but wanted to not push things, so turned around and swam back to the bathhouse.  When I got back I wanted a little more so did another small loop.  In the water, swimming, for about 20 min.  Was cold after, but never go the horrible shivers or trembles.

The water feels so amazing on the skin.  I'm not sure I want to swim in a wetsuit again!

Saw two sea lions as we were getting out, perfect icing on the day!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

This is supposed to be fun

I woke up to freezing temperatures, but a clear day.  I'd committed, in my head, to a swim, but was having a hard time convincing myself I really wanted to do so. So I had a conversation with my husband that went something like this:
Me: I don't want to go.
Him: You don't have to go.
Me: I don't want to go.
Him: You don't have to go.
Me: This is supposed to be fun. It doesn't sound fun.
Him: You don't have to go.
Me: I'm going!

Driving over, the city was socked in with fog.  My first glimpse of the water looked like this:

Seriously. That's not exactly inviting for swimming!

But I still did it. This was the group from this week, smaller than last.

I think the motto, as we entered, was "just like bathwater." 

And here's a photo of me (blue swim cap) with the space needle hovering in the background.

I ended up staying in the water for 45 min, swam to the third staircase, and felt like I could have gone longer. The water was flat and calm. The swim was amazing. I'm glad I went. I did have fun!

The wetsuit has a small hole on my hip.  I didn't feel it while swimming, but will need to fix it this week!

Air temp: 34.  Water temp: 50.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Joining the Notorious Alki Swimmers

I am thinking about revamping this blog.  The year I started it I did not successfully swim through the winter, but I'm giving it a try again this year, and I have some help.  The help comes in the form of the "Notorious Alki Swimmers". I swam with them for the second time today.  They are a (crazy) group of people who swim year round out of Alki point in West Seattle.  Today more than 20 people showed up (that arrow is pointing to me).

I was in the water for about 45 min but never got comfortable enough to put my head down and full on swim. The issue wasn't the cold. It was the chop.  The waves were high and strong. I've swum in higher, in fact two weeks ago snorkeling in the Keys the waves were higher (but the water A LOT warmer). Today I was still struggling, as the waves were coming across fast and hard.  So I did head up breast stroke.  I figure the best way to get used to waves is to swim in waves.  I never felt panicked.  But I also never relaxed enough to really swim.

Air temp  41.  Water temp 48.6!