Monday, May 6, 2013

Last swim lesson, first bike ride.

Today was my last swim lesson.  I think I went maybe 4 times.  I'm glad I did it but I've learned all I wanted to learn, and am comfortable practicing on my own now.  At $20 plus $7 entry into the facility it wasn't worth doing when I'm not getting much out of it anymore.  I rocked flip turns and butterfly stroke this week, so I'm basically a pro.  :P  My main weakness at the moment is my lung capacity/endurance, so I'm going to work on swimming under water holding my breath as long as I can at the beginning and end of each swim workout.

I completely forgot to bring a towel with me to the swim lesson.  At both of the other pools I swim at (WCC and NCRB), I have access to towels there, so I've gotten in the habit of not bringing one.  I am not the type of person that enjoys prancing around naked in the locker room, so that was kind of a downer (in addition to the obvious "how am I going to dry off" problem.)  After swimming, I ended up rinsing off my suit in the shower, and then standing in there for a while to drip dry before going out to my locker to try to put on dry clothes on my semi-wet self.  I did wring out my suit and try to use that to dry off a little while I was air drying in the shower.  It didn't really work.  :)

After the swim I decided to do my first bike ride.  Obviously not my first bike ride ever, but maybe my first as a "training ride" for my triathlon.  I usually only bike to get somewhere, or maybe a leisurely/fun ride through a park or something.  I ended up doing 12.8 miles, which I was fine with.  I think the triathlon bike distance I'm doing is 11 miles, so 12 was plenty for a first time.  I still hate biking.  Going uphill is hard, and going downhill is terrifying.  I don't trust the bike to not fall apart if I hit a bump.  Or I could go flying over the handlebars and head up with a c-spine injury and quadriplegic.  And that doesn't even take into consideration the idiot drivers who are either not paying attention (texting), don't know the laws regarding bike traffic, or both.  Pedestrians aren't any better either.  They walk 2-4 across on the bike path, and I give plenty of warning with my bell and an "on your left" yell, with no response.  So I slow to a crawl, and then do it again a little closer.  Then they finally stop in the middle of the road, split in the middle, and give me a death look as I go by.  I don't get it.  What do they want me to do, just run them over??  Or let them own the path and not let any of the rest of us through.  Ugh.

I don't think I'll bike again for a while.  Not because I don't like it (even though I don't), but because it really doesn't agree with my knee right now.  It's not too bad while I'm riding, but it definitely locks it up when I'm done.  I knew spinning aggravated it, but I was hoping regular biking would be different for some reason.  Oh well.  I also am going to hold off on the clip-in cleats on the bike, since the lack of mobility tends to make the knee worse too.

I had more to write, and was going to add plots or pictures or something, but I'm really tired, so nevermind.

1 comment:

  1. I'm not an expert on swimming, but I do love it a lot! I have found that holding your breath is not such a good thing. If you think about it, you wouldn't hold your breath if you were running (that would majorly suck) but swimming poses it's own challenges as you cannot breathe at will with your face in the water. Earlier this year, I was getting really bad headaches when I would swim at my maximum. I realized it was because I was holding my breath between breaths. I focused on releasing all my air in a steady stream between breaths and I could not believe the difference. It kept my heart rate more steady too. I think the term for holding your breath while swimming is "hypoxic", which they have you do some of if you do any of the 50 swim workouts on that website that I recommended. If you ever want to feel like you're sprinting while swimming at a normal pace, just hold your breath for as long as you can/even longer. Limbs get real tired, real fast!

    You are correct in the assumption that you can train your lungs to hold more air. For most of my swimming years, I used to breathe every 3 strokes (love me some bilateral breathing!). About a year ago, I increased it to every 5 strokes and it was a struggle at first where I would have to revert to every 3 several times per swim, but it feels really natural now.

    Okay, off my swimming soap box...

    PS thank for you for accurately describing bike riding with this statement "Going uphill is hard, and going downhill is terrifying. I don't trust the bike to not fall apart if I hit a bump. Or I could go flying over the handlebars and head up with a c-spine injury and quadriplegic."


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