Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Why Not Another Two?

Friday, I told John after we waded into the pool at Twin Rivers Recreation Center that I was just going to start swimming and see how I felt. After the 8,300 on Thursday, I didn't expect much, but I felt really good and thanks to the big numbers on my Garmin 910XT, a quick peek now and then as I flip-turned revealed that I was swimming faster than the day before. To make a short story long, I swam 7,200 as

6,400 in 2:07:24
600 small paddles
200 easy.

That was an encouraging swim. A few weeks ago, I had outlawed for myself back-to-back long swims because of fear of re injuring my pectoral muscle. Fear dismantled.

Saturday, I went back alone with the same intention to just start swimming and see how I felt. I swam

6,700 in 2:12:25
8 X 50 @ 1:11
600 small paddles
Total: 7,700 meters.

That made not two but three substantial swims in a row, a pretty decent training block of 23,200 meters in three days.

For the week, I got 26,578 meters but no running or walking or weightlifting.

Monday came around leaving only twelve days before Christmas the Chicot Challenge. I actually wrote that, Christmas, I suppose as a Freudian slip. If that is true (Freudian slips), it must mean I am looking forward to my big swim. I am getting a bit giddy from time to time, though I am still somewhat insecure over my fitness. I have done the best I can under the conditions I had to work with. Anyway, I told John the same thing I told him last Friday, that I was just going to listen to my body. I listened for 8,500 meters straight in 2:48:51. It was late, dark, and we were the only ones left in the pool when I stopped.

"How many ya got?" he yelled at me from the deep end.

Did I tell you he is seventy-years old? Did I tell you that he can't raise his arms because his shoulders are so bad? His physician recommends he have both shoulders totally replaced. He has had both knees replaced but refuses to do the shoulders. He is a big guy who once bench pressed 500 pounds back in the day. Now he can't put his shirt on or off by himself. I help him with that. While I swim, he treads water in the deep end, sometimes for three and four hours. I can't imagine.

"Eighty-five," I hollered back.

"Why don't ya do a few more while I swim out."

I stretched a bit but didn't even drink water. No nutrition. If you have been paying attention, over the past few weeks I have been building up the initial swim. This, the thought was, to condition my muscles to burn fat more efficiently. I seems to have been working as my slow down has been progressively getting later and later into the set. I went almost three hours without even a drink of water and felt none the worse for wear.

I put my small paddles on and did an easy 300 while John did his reverse-heads-up breast stroke from the deep end towards the walk in ramp at the shallow end. After 300, he was still only half way back. Slower than usual, I thought.

"How many ya got?" he asked when I stopped.

"Three hundred more."

"Why don't ya do another two?"

Wow. So I did.