So I use a wetsuit… so?

alright…  Lookit… *sigh*

I’ve been saying all along that my biggest problem with swimming is that my legs sink really badly.  I spent the entire hot summer fighting to get faster… with limited success.  I float *slightly* better, but I’ve had two coaches now look at my stroke and tell me that I just sink…  REALLY?  No $#iT!  How much did I just pay you to tell me that?  These genius comments are akin to going to a doctor with a bad flu and having him look at you and say “Yup!  Yer sick!!”.

So I was at the lake Sunday for the usual “Driftwood does North Shore” thing, but the water/air temperature had cooled off enough that I grabbed my wetsuit… which seems to have gotten smaller over the summer…

…anyway, I crammed my fat arse into it and really tried to focus on the form and power techniques I have learned this summer.  The first thing I noticed was something weird… I could feel air on my feet because they were at the surface for the first time ever.  The second thing I noticed was that the bubbles coming off my hands as they entered the water were now streaming past me because I was actually MOVING through the water.  Finally, I got done with the first lap and I wasn’t tired.

My fastest non wetsuit time for the summer was a miserable 24:11 for 1100 yards.  This lap, with the wetsuit, was 19:30.  Almost 5 minutes difference?  Really?  AND I felt strong enough to head out for another lap?  Really?

Note to self:  Do triathlons in the spring and fall (wetsuit legal races) only (until you get better at swimming).  Spend your summer swimming and having fun.

Look.  I don’t want, nor do I ever to expect to win… Or even podium (unless I do this long enough to outlive all my competition).  What I do want is positives.  Who doesn’t?  I don’t want to get too frustrated with the swim because this has to be fun or I won’t do it.   I know it takes a long time to get better as a swimmer and I’m down with the effort.  I’m also down with using technology to act as a bridge.  Maybe someday I will be as fast (slow?) without a wetsuit as I am with a wetsuit.  Until then, the 5-10 minutes I gain with the suit is a positive.  It’s not like I’m cheating and, at best, it puts me in the middle of the pack.  But it’s much better than being followed by the sag boat.


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