Success begets success. – Pretty much every motivational speaker ever
I had an amazing day in the water. I am still having trouble believing it, hours later. I never could have imagined this a mere 3 months ago.
Quick recap: I set out to swim a mile on my “birthday.” I did an even mile in about an hour and a half that day. Cool. Since then, I’ve had a few more swims, doing a mile, or less, and in one case, just over 1.2 miles. That distance is significant, because it is the swim portion of a 1/2 ironman distance race.
Today I got to the pool early, ready to get in at 11:30, committed to staying until lap swim closed at 1:30. I had a quick energy boost before swimming, and I had a bottle of tea for hydration at the end of my lane.
The 11:30 start got going like most lately. There are more than 4 people waiting for the clock, plunging in right away. Everyone else gets off to a fast start, and I am my usual, walrusry self, slowly but surely getting in the laps. After 45 minutes, all the early swimmers are gone, except of course for Darlene, who I am certain has evolved actual gills. New swimmers have come in, lanes have shifted, and I am hitting my stride with the swimp3 providing my only performance enhancing substance: music.
I hit the mile mark, and check the clock. I have a lot of time available to me. I do a quick calculation, and realize that if I push a little harder, I can get that 1.2 mile done in under 70 minutes. Why that time? That is the time allowed in a 1/2 ironman before they cut you off for the course. In many long distance events, if you don’t keep a certain minimum pace, you’re off the course. For the 70.3 miler, the swim gets 1:10. I did the distance in 1:05.
This was cause for celebration. I was pumped. I took a quick break to un-hydrate (I have no nice euphemism for a bathroom break). I still had plenty of energy, and almost another hour of time before lap swim was closed. I decided to get in as many laps as I could, just to see how far I could go. After the initial 86, I counted again to 20. Then another 20. Then, once again checking the clock, I saw that with some push, I could hit another milestone.
As time ticked down, I just turned on the juice. As I the wall at the deep end after 141 full lengths, I was there. I finished 144 total, for a nice memorable number, and with 5 minutes to spare, I left the pool. I was the last to leave, even the mermaid had gone over 1/2 an hour before. (She probably did 3 miles in half the time.)
2 miles. TWO COMPLETE MILES!!! 3600 yards total. I just about passed out after 300 just 3 months ago.
This walrus is not slowing down. I am so geared up right now. I signed up to be a volunteer at ChesapeakeMan in September. I think it is not unreasonable to shoot for their half version in 2012, the Skipjack. I haven’t been on a bike yet, and I haven’t run over 4.5 miles yet. But I am making leaps and bounds, and as this weight comes off, I’m going to get distance gains like crazy.
Two miles. In under two hours. I can hardly believe it myself. When I start kicking enough and get something near good form, I’m going to shave that time by a lot.
Tomorrow I have to get back on the road, or I’ll never get near my March mileage goal. I may be shifting goals to focus on the pool just until the lap swim challenge is over. I could be an actual contender.
Charlie Sheen can have his tiger blood and Adonis DNA. I’ll take my walrus blood.
Hello! Winning! 😉