Ironwoman Dreams

If I can do this, anyone can.

Mad Skillz (And Drillz): A Swimming Story

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It’s amazing how drastic a six degree temp drop is in the pool. Our temp-spoiled bodies shivered slightly as we entered the water this morning. I was clearly, clearly tired after being completely unable to hunker myself down into a proper bedtime the night before. Of course, it isn’t until the alarm sounds at 5 a.m. that I realize how big my “fail” was the night before.

As I warmed up, that familiar breath panic set in, and then settled a bit. Mikey announced that we were going to do an exercise called, “Breathing is Overrated.” Ohhhh boy. Luckily, it wasn’t as bad as I thought. We took turns crossing the pool, breathing less and less frequently each time, until we crossed the entire short course without taking a breath.

With me, holding my breath across the pool, when I’m concentrating on just that, and moving easily, is a snap. I have great cardio and can easily relax and let go of my need for oxygen for that duration. However, when you add in speed, all of my concentration and control goes out the window, and my lungs and heart freak out.

“Legs take up a lot of your oxygen,” Mikey said, which explains why, during kick drills, I feel like I’m gasping for air every five seconds.

I’ve discovered that I really don’t like kicking, maybe because my legs and butt are already tired from running, and I would much rather have them go almost limp, while my arms get the majority of the attention. Still, to be a faster swimmer, kick, I must.

One kick drill we did today was a killer: Ten kicks sans kickboard, then with no hands, flip over and do ten kicks on your back, and repeat. I did okay, but did kind of freak out secretly in my head because I kept getting water up my nose. I named this exercise, “The Otter”–except, when I did it, it wasn’t very cute.

Another week of swim drills clobbered, another week I haven’t swallowed an entire pool. Progress, methinks.

Ooooh! New awesome swimming podcast alert for all you swim nerds: Brenton Ford’s “Effortless Swimming.” (Plus–pssst, ladies, he’s really cute too).

Author: Solange Deschatres

Innovative multi-marketing strategist and writer with a futuristic eyeball (and one normal one for writing, reading, design and such). Strong background in mobile, interactive and social marketing. Runner, writer, and art, music, tech and equine enthusiast. Owner of the most amazing Beagle you'll ever meet.

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