I have never hesitated with swimming, other than waking up early to join a squad swim (50km drive from my house). I love how my body glides through the water. I love that my joints don't hurt like they do when I run or ride. I love how I am always hungry after a good swim set.
Before I arrived to Australia in the early 90s, I feared the water. This may have been attributed to the fact that I nearly drowned at the age of 7. The image of "seeing the light" and choking on water is still vivid in my mind.
I finally learnt how to "not drown" at the age of 12 during school PE classes but I never really "understood" how to swim until the age of 29 when I joined a squad. It's not just about waving your arms through the water and kicking as fast and hard as you can, it is all about creating as much "resistance" so you push your way through.
I am comfortable about doing my own swim sets. This may be because I have started to enjoy training on my own without the pressure of a "group". Sometimes the competitiveness of others really ruins my day, how they have to be in front, always the fastest, strongest and best when at the end of the day, triathlon is an individual sport, your only competitor is yourself. Don't get me wrong, I love coming to sessions when I can, the squad is almost a second family but sometimes, I just don't want to use my energy on anything/anyone else but myself.
Now that the weather is getting warmer (bearable to be swimming in the ocean), I have been getting out and swimming at Mentone beach a few times a week. I love this beach so much better than Elwood.
- It is so much cleaner - you can see the sandbed below and sometimes when the sun is out, you can also see your shadow
- Pole to pole distance is approx 500m
- There are hot showers available to the public
- Its about 1km from my house
The last few times I have gone swimming at Mentone, I have encountered some jellies. Very unpleasant indeed and I am trying to overcome the anxiety of seeing them in their habitat.
|Mentone Beach - Tuesday 5th Nov 2014|
In recent times, I have been using my swims as a means of tuning out and de-stressing. Unlike running or riding where you actually have to pay attention to where you are going unless you want to fall flat on your face, swimming, even if it is laps of the pool allows me to just do something with little thought.
I know that my pace is not quite there for a "race" but it doesn't bother me. It's about doing what makes me happy.