10 hours ago
Swimming with the Blazers
This is how I feel about my swim skills compared to a Masters swimmer. Most of these swimmers were competitive in high school and college and can actually do more than two different strokes. As for me, well let's just say I was late to the swimming scene. It's a little intimidating.
After a four year hiatus from Masters swimming, I finally bit the bullet and went to a KC Blazers practice this morning. I told the coach that I was a triathlete with zero competitive swimming background, which is pool-speak for "I'm slow as hell and don't want to get in any one's way. You will also have to speak slowly and explain all drills to me multiple times."
I was a little nervous, but I jumped in at the end of the group and basically followed the leader, keeping up as best as I could. When we started there were 4, maybe 5 people in the slow lane of a 50 meter pool. Or so I thought. I think there ended up being closer to 8 or 9 but it worked out just fine.
We did 2400m total with several breathing, kicking, and pulling sets. The breathing drills had my lungs screaming, in a good way. Derek, the coach, was patient enough to explain everything to me as many times as needed. (I think some of the other swimmers were glad I was asking questions. I wasn't the only one that needed some extra guidance)
The best part? I wasn't even the slowest person in the lane, which was what I was fearing. I was no where close to the fastest, but I was nipping on the toes of a few of the other swimmers. At least I didn't feel completely incompetent.
We did some drills that I think will help me eventually be able to comfortably breathe on both sides (bilateral breathing) which would be a HUGE advantage in racing. I can't tell you how many races I've been blinded by the sun or swallowed unbelievable amounts of water due to waves smacking me in the face. If only I could have turned my head the other way...
Hey, give me a break. It's a lot harder than it sounds.
I don't know what took me so long to go back to masters swimming. It was the best $5 I've spent in a long time.