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88

Any musician should recognize this number as significant. It is the number of keys on a standard sized piano keyboard.

It also just so happens to be the number of pool lengths of a 20 yard pool that make up a mile. (Most lap pools are 25 yards or meters, but the Milton YMCA is 20.)

88 lengths = 44 laps = 1760 yards = 5280 feet.

One mile.

That is how far I swam today. It took me about an hour and 20 minutes. This is how I wanted to celebrate my birthday. Three months ago, on Dec 8th, my first time in a lap pool, I did 300 yards in about 15 minutes, which is close to today’s pace. That kicked me for a loop. I was dizzy, and somewhat a mess. In less than 3 months, I worked up to a full mile swim.My first time in the pool, I couldn’t crawl most of the time, doing at least 80-90% backstroke. Today, I used less than 20% backstroke.

If I get to 1.2 miles, that is the swim portion of a half-ironman. Of course, that’s open water, which is a whole different world from a lap pool with clear water, walls to push off of, and shallow ends to pause in. But hey, I am a lot closer now than I thought I would be in 3 months.

I met my volume goals for February, even taking a week off. I set out to swim 4 miles, and run 30 miles. I swam 7680 yards, which is 23, 040 feet, or 4.36 miles. I ran 31 miles.

For March, I will be upping my volume goals, and hopefully not missing any days/weeks for illness, and definitely not for out of town trips. So this is a month I can really do some work. With Lent starting, this is my discipline. I am not adding cycling yet, but I do need to add some serious weight training, and I want to focus more on swimming than running for just this month, since the YMCA I belong to is having a lap swim challenge for the month of March. Trouble is, sometimes I swim at Sunbury, and sometimes at Milton, and they are separate challenges. I will be picking one to settle on tonight, and make scheduling changes as I need to.

Next year, I plan to celebrate my 40th (10th) birthday by watching the sun rise over the Grand Canyon, with my wife and children. By then, I will have run a 10k trail run, a road 1/2 marathon, and completed a sprint triathlon and a short trail lap triathlon.

Since Dec 1, I have lost 16 pounds of scale weight. I still see no changes visibly, but hey, it’s the long haul. I bought a speedo for swimming (long trunks people, do not panic) and I actually wore it. It’s pushing the limits of a 38inch lycra waist, but that’s the largest size I could get off the rack.

So in addition to all the very nice facebook birthday greetings, this is the celebration part of my birthday. Monday means visitations, and a hectic after school schedule, so we went out yesterday for a meal.

Training goal: On to March. Let’s say 40 miles running, 8 miles swimming, and 8 solid weight training sessions.

Food tip: sometimes irony works out in one’s favor. Despite the name, a sweet potato is a far better food in every way than a white potato. More iron, more vitamins, and much lower glycemic response.

Congratulations Craig and Danielle on their second child! I would have liked a leap year baby to know, but that’s another year off. Feb 28 is good too.

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One thought on “A Happy Birthday Indeed

  1. Nice blog. No news on this end yet. Hope to get back into the gym more regular. Was aiming to tie and hopefully beat my college bench. Then Christmas week happened. Still…working on it. You are now a motivational element again. New house will have a pool. I wonder if I can get a lap jet insert.

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