Sunday, July 25, 2010

Week of 7/19-7/25

Monday First swim across Cayuga Lake! 1.2 miles in 46 minutes.

I was a bit grumpy at the start of the swim. Francesca, the woman who owns the house we swim from, took one look at me and put me on the slow list of swimmers. Granted, her only experience with me in the water was the first week when I got really bad leg cramps. But I swam a mile with leg cramps that left me limping for three days! I see how that doesn't necessarily mean I'm a fast swimmer but it should say something about my level of determination. I was pretty pissed off and we hadn't even left the shore.

When it got to be my turn to swim, there were 11 people in the water with me, and 7 of us were new to swimming across the lake. It ended up being a bit of a clusterf*** which is what always happens when a bunch of newbies get in the water. The pod that was swimming at my pace took off ahead of me and I was left with a pod of slightly slower swimmers. I could have sprinted and caught up with the faster pod, but I wasn't sure about the canoe situation. (We're supposed to get assigned to canoes in the first few minutes of the swim and can't switch after that, and I wasn't sure if that had happened yet). After wasting precious oxygen trying to figure out who I was supposed to be with, I didn't have the energy to catch up with the faster group, and I really didn't want to swim with the slower group. That's what happened to me last week and there are fewer things less fun than treading water while you wait for people to catch up with you.

I was also a bit nervous because my adviser was in one of the canoes and I didn't really want to swim alongside him. I think I was worried that I would be extra stubborn and not get out even if I needed to. In the end, the choice was made for me. The canoe I thought I was swimming beside abruptly left me (not cool!), and I ended up by myself and next to Brian's canoe. He's the last person who's gonna make me swim at a speed that's too slow so he didn't make me wait for anyone else. Having a canoe to myself was very lucky because I got to pick my pace and experiment with breathing, etc.

My canoers did an excellent job of following a straight line (a lot harder than it sounds) so I ended up swimming a shorter distance than the group ahead of me. That meant I got to finish with the fast group (of the slow wave of swimmers) in 46 minutes. I felt vindicated and I think there's still lots of room for improvement.

Swimming was my last fear for the triathlon. Now that I know I can do endurance swimming, I'm getting really excited. I'm not as prepared as I should/could be, but I've done the best I can while balancing work and life. Most importantly, training is still fun and hasn't become a chore. Less than two weeks to go!

Quick run after work. 4.74 miles, 10'08 min/mile.

After work, I went climbing with Mike, Sarah, Matt, and Sarah's sister. I had an infected splinter in my big toe and it hurt like hell, so I improvised a bit to avoid using my left foot. Worked out great because it was the first time I climbed off route in awhile and it was surprisingly challenging.

Thursday I was running late and I missed the lake swim, so I did a quick run on the East Hill Rec Trail instead. 1.28 miles, 9'51" min/mile & 0.51 miles, 8'33" min/mile.

Friday Swimming with Rick. We did 200 yard intervals for a total of a mile, starting with 4:20 then losing 5 seconds each set. The goal was to swim as fast as possible in each set and then spend the remaining time cooling down. For the first 800 yards, I was consistently swimming 55-60 sec laps which is significantly down from my usual 65-70 sec laps. Looks like all the outdoor swimming is paying off.

Saturday Morning bike ride with Sarah, Cresten, and Mo. We biked up 34 to Lansing and went up near Salmon Creek Rd. I did ~34 miles including my ride to and from Gimme. It was HOT and I was wiped afterward, but the ride itself felt pretty good.

Sunday A mere 3 years after buying my MacBook, I finally got around to transferring all my music over from my old computer. The first thing I did was make a running playlist with all my favorite old songs. The second thing I did was go for a 7.2 mile run (11'06" min/mile). It's amazing how much more fun it is to run with good music.

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