Monday, April 20, 2009

Practicing Disappointment

This past Saturday, I practiced disappointment all day long in my first swim meet in over four years. But I was not alone. If you've ever been to a masters swim meet, it's basically a gathering of former college and age-group swimmers unrealistically trying to equal their best times from when they were much younger and full of human growth hormone...and constantly being disappointed. My opening event was the 500 free and I splitted 1:03, 1:09, 1:08, 1:07, 1:04 for a 5:31...disappointment #1. I was scared of blowing up so I played it safe, too safe. And of the 19 turns, I missed about 12 of them; that's what happens when you become an open water swimmer. Next up 100 fly. I touched the wall and saw 1:00.16...disappointment #2. I knew I was slower but a one double 0? Later, I learned that I'm so out of the swim meet groove that I checked out the wrong lane time and realized that I actually swam a 58.5...a bit less disappointed. By my third event, the 100 IM, I was totally over warming up and warming down so I went to the blocks cold. As soon as I dove in, my body felt like a brick and throughout the swim, I felt like I was 2 feet below the water. Looked up, saw a 1:01.4 (the correct lane this time) and disappointment #3. It was now 5 hours into the meet and I was over swim meet food, over catching up with all the people I hadn't seen in years since I stopped competing in swim meets, over putting on and taking off my swim suit, and over baking in the sun in suburbia. Somehow I managed to warm up for my next two races, the 50 fly and 100 free, and complete all my swims for the day. Coming into the first wall of the 100 free, I flipped, extended, pushed my legs straight and felt nothing but water. I completely missed the turn but got a toenail on the wall so I wasn't DQ'd. This basically summed up my meet. I got home at 5 PM and somehow, I found the motivation to get out on a 1.5 hour bike ride followed by a hard 5K brick run where I held 6:15 pace. I rolled through my door at 8:00 PM done with training for the day. The next day was an early 8:30 AM start (alright early for me) with a 2.5 hour hilly hard effort ride followed by a 5 mile run at 6:45 pace. I had less than an hour to stretch, refuel, and shower before I had to meet 17 students to take them on a hilly hike in our first heat wave of the year. Needless to say, I bonked the last mile of the hike and left a very poor impression on my students. Truth be told, I was happy I did the swim meet and though I didn't swim my best times, I'm satisfied with the effort.

1 comment:

D said...

You ARE a disappointment. I'm voting you off the island first.