Saturday, May 24, 2008

Open Swim and Longest Brick

Monday was our first open swim. I was really looking forward to it. No good pics of me specifically but you can see my bright pink cap in the first pic (bright so they can find us to save us). The second picture is Coach Jane and Dean in kayaks looking for any little bright caps that might be in trouble so they can save us. The last pic is the group - we all survived...some of us barely.

I was in charge of getting Melanie and I up to Vancouver Lake on time. We left a good 30 minutes early and we needed it since I didn't look at my mapquest directions until we got to the last destination point at which time the paper said that we have arrived in Vancouver and need further directions to get to the lake. ARGGGGGGGG. We finally found the lake, the park, and the group with about 3 minutes to get into our wetsuits and into the water.

I was nervous but did pretty well for the first 25 minutes or so. We got in, floated around, made jokes about pockets of "warm water" and basically came to realize that you simply cannot sink in these things. You don't even need to tread water: they just hold you right up. We swam a bit here and a bit there and although I was frustrated with running into people and having people swim over me, I realized it is just a part of not being in a nice clear pool with lines guiding you on the bottom. I started to freak out a bit with getting water splashed in my face and actually swallowing about a gallon total (this lake is not known for particularly clean water and this was freaking me out a bit...not my usual MO, but for some reason it was bugging me) and took my breathing down from every 4th stroke to every other and then I started to really feel like the wetsuit was restricting my breathing. My lungs felt like the size of peanuts. Since the water wasn't really THAT cold, I had opted to not use my new earplugs and whether it was that or simply me freaking out, I started to get dizzy and thought I was going to pass out. I WANTED OUT OF THAT WETSUIT NOW!!!! DID I SAY NOW? NOW IS NOT SOON ENOUGH. So a total freak out. Dano caught my eye (at this point we weren't even swimming, just hanging out in the water) and he saw I was in trouble. He got me started calmimg down and asked Dean to come pick me up. In the meantime, a fellow teammate stayed with me and just let me cry and shake it all out. It's funny, the guys that helped me were all quiet and strong and calm and just said it was going to be all right and that it happened to them their first time too. Cool. The girls gave me hugs and asked how I was feeling and then I couldn't keep the tears back. SUCKED!

I drove home but don't remember it at all...poor Melanie. I took a hot shower, went to bed and cried myself to sleep. Seriously pitiful. I couldn't stop crying. Tuesday was just as bad. Cried off and on all day and finally went to the gym to just ride hard on the bike and see if the tears would stop - they did. Bit by bit I started feeling better and I guess I'm back at it on Monday again. Actually, tomorrow I'm going out with some girls to just hang out in our suits and play around in the water.

So onto a better workout. Today was our longest BRICK before the race. We headed out to Haag Lake for 42 miles. It was the best ride of the year for me. Beautiful weather, flowers, countryside ride. We started at the lake and went about 2/3 around before heading down Old Hwy 47 and out on some country roads. Then we turned around and came back to the lake for another 1 1/3 laps. Total bike time was 2:49:35. My transition time was about 4 minutes including a potty break. Then we headed out across the dam and back. It was supposed to be 8 miles and it took FOREVER. My legs felt good, lungs good, tummy good, so I'm not sure why I was so slow. We made it back in 1.5 hours which is like a 13 minute mile. Hmmmm. We didn't spend much time at the aid station either time, but we did walk up a couple of hills on the way back. I told Sheryl when we were in the home stretch that this was the longest a$$ 8 miles ever and then come to find out it was only 7 KILLED me!(I clocked it on my way home and it was actually just UNDER 7 (poop). Oh well. I felt great after this brick and everything still feels good a couple hours later. Legs and hips and tummy and all. Life is Good.

So I'll let you know how Monday goes. Coach Dano said he'll swim with me so hopefully he'll be able to keep me in a calm state of being :o)


Melissa H said...

Poor you. I am absolutely fascinated with why this happens to everyone on their first time out? Is it a form of claustrophobia, maybe? Too many people around and no way to escape? Hmm.

You're going to have such an amazing race because you're fighting through so many mental challenges. You rock.

Julie said...

Crazy isn't it?????? I have a much better report for last night when I get a chance to post it up. HOORAY!!!!