Thursday, August 31, 2006

Junior Achiever

I finally got a swimming lesson in yesterday. I am taking a few days off from work to enjoy the last bit of summer laziness here in Minnesota.
With my time off, I decided to catch up on some things that I've been neglecting: swim lessons; cleaning out some clutter; a golf lesson; going to the fabulous Minnesota State Fair and more. Oh yeah, and relaxing.

I've been traveling so much for work lately that my swim schedule got a little off. I will be competing in my last tri for the season on Saturday, so last week I got back in the pool for some laps and then immediately signed up for another lesson.

So yesterday, my coach Dave had me do some drills that should increase my fluidity in the water -- really reaching my stroke out (meaning not cutting in to the water at my eye line, but to cut in to the water about inline with my wrist of my extended arm). Once I cut in to the water, I should set my extended arm in to the anchor position and rotate over to the other side.

He also helped me with a "yeah, I'm a swimmer" kick-off from the sidewall. He had wanted me to learn how to do flip turns, but I can't get beyond getting water up my nose -- yet -- so I'm still pushing off the wall for my turnaround.

The new technique works like this: I crouch down both my legs on the wall in more of a sideways position (I'm looking at the side wall, not the wall ahead of me). I get in to position underwater while I'm crouched down and then push off underwater. This helps me cut through the water more efficiently because I'm already on my side and not lying "flat" in the water creating drag.

I still have three lessons left and am feeling like I'm really coming along.

I took my lesson in the middle of the day and Dave had a client after me. A young boy of about ten or so. Once my lesson was over, I decided to relax in the whirlpool and watch Dave coach the kid.

The kid -- aka the "Junior Achiever" was quite something to watch. No pushing off the sidewall for him. Oh no. He used the diving platform to spring -- cat like -- in to the water and then he swam his 100 freestyle like an Olympian, flip turns and all.

I was amazed. The kid really was fast. I must have been staring at him with an amazed look on my face because at one point, Dave looked over to me in the whirlpool and said "You don't want to know how fast he is going".

Damn straight.

I know that I am a plodder -- be it a running plodder or a swimming plodder. I'm really okay with that.

I do admire those speedsters -- and I fully accept the fact that I started this athletic journey of mine a little late in the game. No matter to me. I still enjoy being out there working my body, feeling physicially fit and taking in the surrounding around me (wonderful scenery when I run; feeling the velvet fluidity of the water when I swim. You know how it goes.)

I'm sure that this kid is competing on some team some where. Good for him. He was amazing to watch and did ignight a little of my competitive nature. If he can do a flip turn, I can to.

Looking forward to being a Senior Achiever.


Dori said...

Senior Achiever--I like the sound of that! Sounds like you've had a busy "days off". How do you find time to work? :-)

I went to the State Fair today and had a great time. I went with a girlfriend and we just played; we even went in the Haunted Mansion, which I had never been in.

Good luck on Saturday with your tri!

Wanna-be 5k-er said...

What a cool entry. It is neat to see young kids that are really good (and it's humbling, too, I know). But you ARE a senior achiever! You get to the pool, you run, you do triathalons...that is super! Go you!!!!

GL in your last tri, hope it went well.

Marcia said...

Sounds like you have really made significant accomplishments in your swimming technique, Amy! Way to go!!!