Friday, May 20, 2011

The Open Water...and....Who Are You?

Have I ever told you how much I love open water swimming?
I know that from previous posts you might think I'm afraid of it. I'm not. What I'm afraid of is my wetsuit. The first time or two I put it on, I feel like my breathing is constricted, like my arms aren't moving correctly and then once the panic sets it...everything else is magnified...like my husband telling me there are over 1 million fish in Hagg Lake and that bringing up into my mind how many dead bodies might have been tossed in over the years.

But lap swimming in a pool cannot even compare to the joy of swimming out in the open. Whether it is rain splashing down on you or the brilliant sunshine...or a nice sunset...

...it is an amazing feeling to Not. Stop. At. The. Wall. Every. 20something. Strokes.

I remember someone saying during my first tri season that they wished the whole race were a swim. I thought that they were loco. But after a really really really tough first season of learning to swim, it finally all came together for me and the swim was a great leg that first year...and now I wish the whole race were the swim. I wish at the very least, they would move the swim to the end, 'cause it is hot as hell once you hit leg three of Pac Crest...but more on that later.

I almost didn't post this next picture because...well...geez...I could have smiled or woke up or... something. I do know I was stressed out from the garage sale happenings...and ready for bed!

The funny thing about this picture is it took me 10 minutes to figure out who that was on the far right. So many people on the team and you see them in so many different sweaty and funny ways that when you do finally see them in street clothes with their hair done, it's kind of freaky. In fact, one night Kelly (the beautiful short girl) was telling me how ironic she found it that that very morning she had run into a fellow teammate in a random McDonald's bathroom on the way out to a training ride. "What are the chances", she said?
I said "that was me". She said "no it wasn't". I said "yes...yes it was".
"No! It wasn't. I talked to her", she protested.

Oh brother...it WAS me. And...I wasn't even wearing a swim cap or helmet at the time...just my morning face. YIKES!

18 comments:

TeamMancuso said...

YOu know when I'm doing my long swim I kind of get dizzy from all the flip turns!! I haven't had the chance to try on a wetsuit yet or do an open water swim. I am kind of nervous about it.

Kovas said...

I love wearing wetsuits because then I actually float.

Michael said...

That story is funny! I have yet to do a wetsuit swim. I am totally intimidated by it. I would rather freeze than put the suit on. I have one (I actually won it last year) but I don't want to make the jump to wearing on.

P said...

If you could just share a little of that open water love my way, I'd be most grateful!!

Nikki Kendall said...

Too funny! We say that all the time at team events..."you look different wearing real clothes." LOVE IT! I did my first open water swim and my first wetsuit swim last night.....um....didn't go well but I am more prepared for SUNDAY!!

Big Daddy Diesel said...

I have a love/hate relationship with OWS. I love the open water, I hate it because I have had panic attacks during the swim

Jo Lynn said...

The only reason I don't tri is because I am terrified of open water. :(

My Life and Running said...

Love OWS! You are so right that it doesn't compare!

Kate said...

I would be afraid of putting on the wetsuit. On the plus side, all the fish would be scared away by the sight. :)

That story is hilarious. I've had the same kind of experience...running into someone I know from training and being unable to place them. Every once in a while, I'll run into a student, and despite the fact that they see me almost as much as they see their parents, half the time they don't recognize me out of school. :)

Julie said...

LOL! That is so funny! I often find myself wandering around races looking for people I know but everyone looks the same!

Amanda@runninghood said...

Gosh, someday I would love if you would meet up with me and make me feel not so scared about the whole idea of Tri training. I don't have the first clue about where to start but even having someone to go on a swim with at Hagg Lake or some place nearby. OR a bike ride. Reassuring me that my vagina is supposed to feel like it fell off that things will get better. Ha!

Hey, who is the girl in the picture on the left? She looks sooo familiar! Is her name Erika?

Katie said...

I LOVE Ocean swims, on calmer days of course, but it is my fav! I've actually yet to do it in a wetsuit though, i'm not really looking forward to that part. The bay is alright, it is just a bit icky.

FruitFly said...

I love your McDonald's story! I know even just reading blogs it throws me off when we post pictures in non-running clothes. I mean do we all exist without sweat and ponytails??

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

Swimming in ipen water sounds like getting to run outside after being on the TM all winter!

How funny that your teammate had no clue it was you! I would not be recognizable with a.m. face... Whew!

Stephanie said...

I have never put on one of those wetsuits! I have a feeling I would panic at first too. The story is hilarious. To be honest...I had to squint to figure which of those ladies was you!!

ajh said...

Do you have to wear a wetsuit or would you be at a disadvantage without it? Aren't they illegal some of the time? You need to do one of those races.

Aimee said...

I like OWS too, but it always takes me a couple times to get all of my "freak outs" out of the way!

That story is too funny!!

Julie said...

The water is generally pretty cold at the races early in the season here - especially at Pac Crest...brrr,
so wetsuits ARE recommended.