Thursday, March 1, 2012

Finally got a winter storm while doing polar bear swim

This has been one of the wimpiest winters that I can remember.  For the first time this year we actually got a small winter storm while doing our swim. The power was out at the marina, so the bathroom door was locked.  I did a quick change in my car and got ready.

Jim and I swimming "the lap" out to the marina opening
and back. in 42°F.
Jim called on my cell and asked about the storm.  I could see some serious precipitous clouds about 2-3 miles north of the marina and it was heading in.  We would have to hurry if we didn't want to get dumped on.  When he pulled up I was ready to go and it just started to snow a little.  The air temp was in the upper 20s and Jim took a water temp with his digital thermometer and it read 42°F (5.5°C).  My goal for this swim, was not about distance or time in the water, but about mentality while in the water.  I wanted to make sure I was in complete control of my breathing and did give in to any type of biological urge to push my swim faster.  I was to focus on slowing down my breathing, and my stroke and get a decent DPS while swimming.

I hesitated a little getting down to my suit, but once I did that, Jim was already in the water.  He's such a pro at this now.  I got in right behind him and swam directly to the opening of the marina.  This is also the second time on the "flip side" of the season that I have not worn my neoprene cap.  To be honest, I couldn't tell that much of a difference.  When I got out to the opening I looked out briefly into the vastness of the interior of the lake.  The storm clouds looked very dense and intense.  I turned around and headed back.  I got freaked out a little cause I saw Jim off to my right heading towards the marina opening.  I didn't expect him to be there and I wondered if I should hang out with him or keep going.  I stopped and "sat down" in the water watching him make his way to the turn around point.  Then I thought, "I really need to keep moving", so I turned back around and headed into the ramp.
Fun to swim in the small winter storm.

When I got back and started walking out I looked at my watch:  5 minutes exactly.  About right.  Felt good about the swim and how I was able to slow things down and not get so wrapped up in how cold I was.

It's a shame we have to wait until March to get a storm at the same time that we do a swim.  Hopefully we get alot more snow and it doesn't start to warm up just yet.

Total Distance: 350 yards in 42°F (5 minutes)

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