I started training for an August sprint triathalon (Aquaman in Three Rivers) last week through Gazelle's Trizelle program. I mean, sure- obviously I run. And I know how to ride a bike. But swimming? Yeah. Swimming. Not my strong suit. I took swimming lessons when I was about 11 or 12 years old... just enough to prevent me from drowning when I got near water. But water makes me a little crazy. I'm not sure if it's a fear that I'll drown, or get tired and be stuck in the middle of the water? I mean, if you get tired when you're running, you walk. If you get tired when you're swimming, well... you drown.
So, I'm hoping to overcome this somewhat irrational fear I have. I actually do *like* to swim. It's easy on the joints, it's great for your core. And truthfully, the run/walk ratio can apply to swimming, too; you get tired, you elementary backstroke it. Ah. The swimming version of walking. (Aside from the fact you can't see where you're going.)
With all that said, the tri training is a blast. I get a great workout, and it's so much more fun than just running forever. Swim for a while.... recover on the bike... run a few miles. Today I was so warmed-up after all that, I decided to do steep hill repeats on Academy St. A nice quarter-mile climb, back down, back up, back down... I probably could have kept going!
So, I guess what I'm most hoping to get out of this summer is to:
1) IMPROVE MY SWIMMING. I'm not saying I'm going to be Dana Torres by the end of the summer. Actually, can I please be Dana Torres by the end of the summer? That girl has some serious abs. I should Google what she does to work out. And she's like 45 years old, too. Man, she's a rock-star. But yeah... I won't be her, but I plan on being a stronger swimmer. I think a good goal is to feel confident enough that I can make it through a 500-yd swim without worrying that I'll die in the water.
2) BECOME A STRONGER RUNNER. I know running is my strongest suit. But there is this one girl in my age group that I can never seem to beat. She's not in KAR, and she doesn't race everything. But every time I race her, I seem to get 2nd or 3rd (I know, stop complaining). It's just aggrivating! And she's like a fricking ghost, I have no clue what she looks like. I never seem to see her. So I'm hoping that between the cross-training I'm doing, and the speed-work that will start in the next month or so... yeah. Hopefully I'll catch her.
3) HAVE FUN. During marathon training, I could feel my running "rut" settling in. Ruts are hard to shake. It's like you want to run, because you know you love it. But it just isn't as fun as it used to be. With 5k season picking up (and starting off with a bang, I'm 4 for 4 in the 5k/10k medaling department), I've seen some improvement in my attitude. But I know that varying my workout is going to help immensely. It's awesome to do new things and push myself in different ways.
So, June is here with an exciting burst. My challenge to all of you is to throw caution to the wind and try something new this summer. Find a way to get exercise in that you enjoy. Love yourself enough to improve your quality of life. I know exercise can be hard, and sometimes painful. But I read somewhere: "Don't let what you want today change what you want most." In other words, don't let temporary discomfort affect your bigger picture.
"The only one who can tell you 'you can't' is you. And you don't have to listen." ~ Nike