COULD IT BE TIME TO RACE AGAIN?
Yes, well nearly, Sunday August 20th I am entered in a 4.75 mile point to point lake race, for some a taper would be in order, for me it is a week of training.
After the Boston Light swim I enjoy a Sunday rest day, with that done it is back to swimming starting with Monday, 6:o0am swimming in the pool, I feel good, but ( I was told that if you say ” but” you are discounting the thing you just said), ….so let’s pick up at the BUT again……I feel good swimming, ” but” when I try to put the “pedal on the medal ” there is little to nothing there, I am tapped out. After the first 200 meters I move to the back of the line of swimmers and after the next few 200’s I move out of my regular lane and into the lane next door which has a slower swim speed. I muddle through the workout, hit the shower and dress ready to teach a 60 minute fitness class of cardio and strength training, then into the fitness room for strengthtraining. The day rolls on and concludes with a 4:30pm Yoga class, that feels great, I feel a little closer to being back to myself.
BACK TO THE LAKE
Tuesday morning rolls around, I am up at 6:00am, the rain is teaming down, ” might be a good day to bust out the thermos and hot chocolate for after my swim”, I think as I glance out the window at the rain sheeting down in the dark. Into the car and off to the Reservior, I meet Deb, and we head to the waters edge, step by step I edge deeper into the water, withall the rain the temperature has dropped, I slide under the surface and begin my 2 hour swim in the pouring rain, I am miserable. The rain doesn’t let up, we are swimming down to picnic island today and also to Little Italy, ” not too bad, nothing hurts, my stroke feels relaxed, this is going to be OK”, I give myself a little pep talk and with that swim merrilyon, one feed down, around the island, swim, swim, swim, then I see Deb giving me the thumbs up sign, ” not sure what she wants me to do”, I think to myself and swim on, I work hard to ” appear” as if I am giving a little bit more effort, I don’t think it is very convincing. Feed number 2 arrives, normally Deb counts the seconds it takes for me to down my feed, while I am chugging the rain is pelting my face, Deb is drenched, I am watching as she ditches the counting to tell me something instead, she is using hand motions along with her flow of words, chatter, chatter, chatter, is all I hear, finally she stops talking, I lower my feed cup and grin mischievously, ” you know I heard none of the that” and with that I swim off laughing, ha, ha, ha , ha , ha, then my head goes down into the murky water and the hahahas turn into bubbles.
We wrap up the swim with a sprint to the canoe launch and me sucking down 3 or 4 Jelly Babies, ” you were way off today, your stroke count was as low as 64 strokes per minute”, Deb says, ” I thought that was the case, that’s all I had in today, a recovery swim for sure”, we both laugh and go about dragging all the gear back to the car.
WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES
Wednesday, same time, up early and off to the lake, what a different day, today it is the most beautiful morning I recall, like a reward for enduring the miserable conditions of yesterday, this is a stunning morning, fog on the water, the water itself is glass like and the sunrise luminates the sky, in a warm orange water color way, magical. The swim itself is short, one hour and 22 minutes, I am back to my old punchy self in the water, and inhale my jelly babies at the end of the swim.
FISH AS BIG AS YOU WILL GRAB YOUR ARM AND DRAG YOU UNDER
Thursday, another 2 Hour swim and another outstanding day, Deb is paddling and we make quick work of the course, as usual Deb gives my the “sprint your TAIL OFF” signal a few hundred meters out from the canoe in and I go about thrashing my way into the shore as fast as I can, the faster I swim the better practiced I will be to battle the tides and the sooner I get my Jelly Babies, my end of swim treats. I don’t stop pulling hard until my hand touches the bottom, I always sprint til I bottom out, I want it ingrained in my head, BAM, there is it the rocks, I pull up and then dolphin dive over to Den and the kayak out, she knows and has already got my Jelly Baby cup out and ready, ” what color do you want”, Deb asks, ” I’ll take him, and his little friend too”, I reply witha sly smile, I inhale them both witha pile of fishing gear, the other is about to push off, they are looking quite wide eyed, I am not sure if they are puzzled by me or Deb and the kayak, for fun Deb surprised me by putting on an aqua blue bobbed wig in the middle of our training, I howled with laughter and at my next feed went about putting the wig on ” cat stanely”, who wore it for the rest of the swim and into the canoe launch, he looked quite embarrassed but still stood proud at the front of the boat. What a sight we all must look, I lift my eyes only above the water and wave, a funny little side to side wave, half in the water and half out and then I swim towards then and start to walk out……” we left you a couple of fish in there”, I say, ” Awwww, there fish longer than your body and bigger than your 22 pounds this lake”, he replies to me, ” watch out, they’ll grab your arm, and drag you to the other end of the lake and leave you there”, he says, ” well you guys have a great fishing day and keep out of mischief”, I say witha grin, ” there’s 154 years of trouble right here in this boat”, he says and with that he pushes off the canoe and the two of them are off, all I can hear is a spout of stories following them as they motor away, I do hope I see them again soon, they are a riot.
TRAINING DONE, NEXT A REST DAY
A day off from training on Friday, after work I go about packing up for tomorrows race at Lake Willoughby, 9:30pm all packed up and time for some stretching and foam roller massage, 10:15pm off to bed and thoughts of tomorrow’s swim, ” I wonder if I will be faster than last year, I know my feeds are faster and I have many more miles under my belt, time will tell” I ponder the thought as I drift off to a sleep filled with thoughts of the Channel.
Will I set a personal best crossing Lake Willoughby, I’ll keep you posted
Isn’t it something how a smile can break the ice, when the fishermen and I first locked eyes there was a standoffish feel in the air, one could say we were from different worlds, with a little wave and smile we shared our love of the water and found we were from the same world, the here and now world.
“Reach out , if you don’t you will never discover the hidden gems “
-Charlotte J Brynn