Sunday, February 8, 2009

Swim Meet!!

This meet was Tough!!! Humbling. Quite shocking to my system at times I have to say.
I train hard almost every day of the week. Long runs, long rides, hard runs, hard swims, you know the drill. Hours and hours and hours of swim, bike, run. So I know I am strong. I am fit. And my endurance is getting there.
And, I have always, in my heart, been a swimmer.
But I have not Raced in a Meet in about 17 years. That's a long time. A lot of time to lose the feel. The feel of going fast off the blocks, the feel of "flailing your arms" for a 50 free (right Steve?) , the feel of hitting each turn on the right stroke, just the feel of going super fast. It's not something that comes automatically. You have to practice it. To nurture it.
I do swim quite a bit these days. But no way Near what I swam for yardage each week in HS or college. It makes a difference.
You get the point here. It hurt.
My first event-200 IM
Cool. This was one of my events in HS and College. But, I was in a heat with All men. That was a tough way to start.
I dove in and started having fun with the first 50 fly. The problem? This huge tidal wave coming at me from the men waaaaaaay in front of me. Shoot.
I killed my way through this event and felt my lungs burn like I haven't felt in a long long time. It hurt but I pushed on. My brother, a great swimmer himself, honestly reported, " I could tell on that 2nd length of breaststroke that you were hurting." Thanks Jeff. But, he was right.
FInishing time: 2:39. Ouch. Best time before this? 2:12. What's a little 27 seconds! :)
I was shaking when I finished this race. My heart was racing. My muscles were pulsing. I had 1 heat of 100 fly before I swam again. So...about 3 minutes by the time they started that race and my turn.
I was back on the blocks for the 100 fly. My main event in HS. I was mostly a 200 butterflier in college...even longer. This race was scaring me. I was tired. I was unprepared. I had shoulder surgery 2 years ago for a torn rotator cuff and therefore have not been swimming butterfly...until about a month ago. I would do a 25 here or there after 1 yr post-op to test out the arm, but that was it. I mean, as a triathlete, I don't need to do much fly.
There I was. On the blocks just Hoping I could get my arms over the water for the whole race!!
Off we went. I felt good. I took it out easy. My dear friend, Alina, was in the lane next to me. I felt comforted by this. She and I grew up swimming together. Literally. We swam and swam all through our early years. We travelled near and far to meets together. To be next to her again was exactly what I needed in that moment.
So, back to the race. Or the swim. It wasn't too much of a race! I slowed each 25. But you know what, my arms came over the water!! Alina crushed the race. She did awesome. Go girl. As for me, well, I'm ok about it. 1:12. Only 13 seconds slower than my college PR!! Woah. If not for that 200 IM a few minutes earlier, Maybe I could have pulled out a more respectable time.
After that, I relaxed. My muscles kept shaking but I did have fun! I have to say though, besides that 100 fly, I swam in heats with all men Every race! that was tough. It prevented me from having any real Races! I couldn't go head to head with anyone and that was too bad. And I had major tidal waves to contend with off the walls!
50 free was next- 28. 4
100 Free 1:02
50 fly 30.8?
100IM 1:12
Not too bad. Not too great but not too bad either.
I was back in my hometown for a meet. My parents were there. My husband and kids were there. A good friend I know from triathlons came with his daughter. And best of all, I was back in a swim meet with Alina, Mary, Jeff and Steve!! A priceless blast from the past. I am so glad I did this today.


Swimming for ME said...

Ange it was so fun! I am very appreciative you made the long haul down. And while you may not say you were prepared, you swam a LOT of events and did some great times. To hear you used to go sub 1:00 in the 100 fly is unbelievable!! I didn't know that but am not surprised. Can't wait to give triathlon a go at Norway. Thanks for your encouragement. I'm glad I don't ever have to race you in a Tri -- watch out IMLP!!!

Velma said...

Great job swimming with the boys - that had to be intimidating!

Jennifer Cunnane said...

A flipping 1:02 for freestyle???? Do you have gills, fins or the like? WOW! I wish you would have been at tri camp, would have loved to have met you!

Ulyana said...

Wow, this was really interesting to read. I was on the endge of my seat. I am thinking of getting into swimming, but I'll have to learn from scratch!

Jennifer Harrison said...

TOO fun is right!! Glad you got out there and did the meet, they are so fun! And, if you trained like a "swimmer" and not triathlete your times would have been closer to your HS /college times, but your times are great considering you lift, swim and run too!! ;)) nice job!

IronMatron said...

It was so fun to watch you swim. You may not be as fast as the you were in the days of yore for those little sprints, but your strokes are so beautiful--it's a gift to watch you! And if I ever swim a 1:12 in the 100 fly I will die of pleasure and pride... :)I can't believe you went sub one minute for the 100 fly in college.
I had the best time with you this weekend. The ride, the meet, our lunch... I miss you. weep. weep.

Zach said...

Holy hell you are a fast swimmer. All of the times you posted are very impressive. Nice work!