So before I launch into my horrifying swim story from tonight, let me catch you up on my week. On Sunday, I woke up from my Saturday adventure, convinced I would never move again. Luckily, I was wrong. I took two full days completely off - no running, swimming or biking. The schedule (who my friend, Rudy, has reminded me is a guideline, said that I was supposed to bike for 90 minutes on Sunday and then do an hour swim and an hour bike on Monday. Tuesday's schedule called for a run speed workout. Since I was still going downstairs sideways (and only out of necessity) on Monday night, that obviously wasn't going to happen...
So I moved my Monday workouts to Tuesday. 16 minutes into the bike (on the trainer) my quads were on fire, my shins ached and I thought my legs might fall off. I was about to call it a day and rationalize that I needed more recovery - until I remembered I won't have that luxury in Idaho. So I sucked it up and kept spinning. Got through the full hour on the bike and actually felt better afterwards. The swim was fine - other than the fact that I'm obviously slower than beginnertriathlete.com wants me to be since a 40 minute workout took me 55 : )
That brings us to today. I ran 6 miles easy this morning in the rain. Felt refreshing to be out again and while the legs are still healing, I'm encouraged to realize I still want to run. Especially after I went to the pool tonight...
Today's workout was my 'long' swim day of the week - 2900m total - 6x100 warmup (focusing on a different part of the stroke for each 100), 4x500 main set at a steady pace and a 2x150 cooldown. The distance alone made me nervous. Tuesday's workout was 2450m and that felt really long. Then I got to the gym and found all 4 lanes taken. I asked the most normal looking of the 4 if she would mind if I shared her lane. That'll teach me to judge a book by its cover.
She was an excellent swimmer. That is the only nice thing I will say about her in this post.
The woman had no concept of pool etiquette - i.e. how to share a freaking lane. I think I'm a pretty good lane buddy. I received formal training in pool etiquette from Team in Training (they gave us a handout and I read it). And since I am built like a 9-year-old boy, I am approximately 6 inches wide so I don't take up much lane space.
This woman was a little bit wider than 6 inches. (That's me being nice, like when my grandma says someone is 'different' when she really means they're f*ing crazy and she hopes they go to hell) She was also practicing her butterfly stroke, with hard plastic paddles, and doing those flip turn things that look up 1/4 the length of the pool. This meant that every time she passed me (which was often considering she was significantly faster than me), I was nearly struck in the head with a forceful plastic paddle, or a kicking foot. It also meant the entire pool was churning and choppy like the worst day at Millerton Lake. My only chance for survial was to hug the plastic lane divider the entire time. So much so that my hands and feet all have red marks on them.
Of course, 2900m gave me plenty of time to look for 'silver linings' - 1) this was good Ironman training for the mass start swim when you get kicked in the head and 2) focusing on not dying sure made the swim go faster.
Still not fast enough for the liking of the beginnertriathlete.com people though - the '60 minute workout' took me over an hour and ten minutes. But I think I get some time shaved off for the constant dodging of GB3's equivalent of the Loch Ness monster.
So seriously ... is it still too cold to swim in the lake?