Friday, March 24, 2017

Will training ruin my love of swimming?

For the past two years, and many summers prior, I've swum for fun.  I swim when I want. Stop when I'm tired. Skip it if the weather is bad or there is some other tempting event to go to. My swimming was purely recreational.  Although I often did a "race" or two each summer, I never worried about my finish time and my longest event was 1.4 miles.  Since my typical Lake Washington swim was 1 mile, it wasn't hard to push on that day.

Now I'm contemplating putting together a summer swim "season" with two events that will challenge me-- a 1.5 mile swim in salt water and a 5k swim in the lake.  The first will challenge me in conditions, the second in distance.

The idea of doing a 5k swim is a bit daunting. I would actually have to focus on training for that. As I've been researching what the training would look like, I realize I'll have to commit to a lot more time in the water. This may mean earlier mornings or swimming later in the day, neither of which are ideal.

So this raises the question-- is training going to suck the fun out of swimming? And if so, do I not even want to sign on?

The plan right now is to ease into the training, and see how I feel, before signing up for any event. If I continue to like the ramp up and formal training in about a month, I will pay my fees for the "big" events.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

San Francisco Bay Swim

I did it. I got to swim in San Francisco Bay.  It was all I had dreamed it would be and it has opened me up to wanting more.

My conference ended at 11am, and my flight from SFO was at 5, so I knew I had to move efficiently to get the maximum time in the water. I took an UBER from the hotel to the Aquatic Park. The UBER driver was really friendly and also disbelieving that I was going to swim in that water!

I went in to the Dolphin Club and paid there $10 fee to use the facilities.  Changed in the locker room and was out on the beach in no time!

The water was a warm 51.7 degrees.  Or at least it felt warm in comparison to the 46ish degree Puget Sound.

The water was also VERY murky. I could barely see my hand in front of my face. But the water had barely any taste of salt.  That may be because of recent storms.

Swimming in the middle of a city I love was such a pleasure.

I stayed parallel to shore.  Swam one loop, got out and checked the time, then swam another. The hot shower and sauna after were great.

And I got to warm up with a family tradition--- Ice Cream at Ghirardelli square! (notice how many spoons they gave me!!)