Thursday, July 11, 2013

Progress In the Pool

After I quit swimming a few years ago my return to the pool was anything but graceful. I felt like I was flailing/drowning and was embarrassed by how slow I had gotten. I've been very open about my struggle to come to terms with all this, which I know sounds pretty dramatic of me but it was really hard to go from being a swimmer for 10 years to absolutely nothing.

Since quitting I hadn't swam regularly until this past spring. I started swimming 2-3 times a week while training for the Nike Women's Half Marathon but I wasn't doing anything too hard or long. I started noticing that the more I swam the more I actually liked it. It felt good to be back in the water but I had no desire to push myself because I knew the times I would see would leave me upset.

So after a few months of just getting used to being back in the pool and focusing on my technique I'm finally ready to put in some work. I am nowhere near where I was when I swam competitively but my times have certainly been getting faster. I am noticing that I can go harder for longer without dying off. I've also learned that I don't speed to spend a whole lot of time in the pool to see progress.

Yesterday I had a swim workout that consisted of 2 x 150 moderate, 3 x 100 hard, 6 x 50 max, with a 300 in between. One thing that I've gotten really good at with swimming is knowing what a certain pace feels like. I am terrible with this with running and biking, but swimming, good to go! Based on paces I've previously held I decided to do the 1:50s at a 1:20 pace, 100s at 1:15 and 50s at 1:10 or faster. In the past anything between 1:20-1:15 was a good pace but faster than 1:15 was pretty challenging.

On every single repeat I either finished in my goal time or was one second faster. With only 10 seconds rest between each repeat I was nervous that I wouldn't be able to hold those paces but to my surprise I held them with relative ease. I definitely wasn't going easy but more like a controlled comfortably hard pace.

Throw back to districts, sophomore year!

I know I'm never going to be back to the speed or endurance in the pool that I used to be at but its really nice to be going in that direction. It's also nice that no matter how hard the workout (unless it's more than 10,000 yards but hopefully I will never see that kind of yardage again), swimming hardly takes anything out of me. I may not be the best running or cyclist out there, although I am making a lot of progress, its really comforting and exciting to have swimming completely taken care of. Now to continue the streak of being first out of the water at all my races this summer!

1 comment :

  1. How about you swim for me at my 70.3 this weekend, I'll pay you. AHAHHAHAHAHHAHA!