Thursday, July 3, 2008

Oh, what a beeeauuutifullll morning!

Lots of great things today:

1) I'm on PTO (taking a Paid Time Off day -- vacation; not at work; FREE!). I have a long stretch of days ahead of me, as I won't go back to the grind until Tuesday, July 8th. Hurray.

2) The weather is great. Although it is cool today (low 70s, which is highly unusual for Minnesota + July), it is not raining; birds are chirping, sun is shining.

The good weather is supposed to last throughout the weekend. Hurray!

3) I met Greg, one of my tri coaches, this morning at 6:30 am for an open water swim and bike practice. It rocked. HURRAY!

We met at Lake Ann Park in Channhassen -- a suburb close to Minneapolis. The lake is very pretty -- no motorized vehicles allowed, so it is pretty clean.

It was only in the 60's when I got to the park, so I was a little nervous about getting too cold doing the swim. Thank heavens for that wetsuit!

Greg is a young, very fit guy. Was a swimmer in high school and college. (He swam with my swim coach, Dave). Did all sorts of athletics pretty much his whole life: skiing; biking; swimming; boating, you name it.

The last tri he did, he placed 9th. In the whole event. I'm lucky to not be 9th from the bottom.

He works with Ben, the head coach of Endurance Athlete. Ben is a skier, biker, marathoner, ironman, etc. Again, built for power and speed.

I LOVE these coaches!

They have never been condescending or doubtful about my (aka "middle-aged, back-of-the- pack, Athena-weight-ranged") abilities. Always encouraging, always challenging, always great.

I highly, highly, highly recommend them.

Anyway: Greg's plan was to swim across the lake. He said we could get to the other side and then, if I wasn't feeling confident, we could walk the path back to our starting point.

My plan was to splash a little bit around the swim buoys.

Greg's plan prevailed.

We started out and (again or as per usual) my goggles leaked. I was nervous -- but this time, no buoy to swim up to to rest. Instead, I had to just tread water or sort of dog-paddle/breast stroke (dog stroke?) until I could move forward.

Greg would wait and rest with me. Or he'd float on his back. Or he'd otherwise occupy himself while I got my act together.

We paddled to the other side and then he says: "let's swim back".

Huh? What happened to "walk back"?

He said "You can do it".

And I did.

In fact, I swam all the way back without stopping once!

The goggles found their seal, my stroke felt good, I could site the beach end-point easily and I just did my thing.


Even Greg was impressed that I made it back with out stopping. (At least that is what he said).

After the swim, we went on a short bike (about 40 minutes). Did some hills, got some pointers and burned some calories.

All in all, it was a great workout and a great way to start my PTO.

I've got a couple of fun and challenging workouts on my training plan to complete this weekend, including a long bike ride that I'll be doing with Hubby and some friends.

Hopefully I'll have some photos of that one.

Hey, if you have a minute, give a shout out to Nat. She is still on the toe-mend. She has more really wonderful pictures on her blog.

Happy holiday weekend everyone!

1 comment:

Michelle said...

Great job on the swim! I'm so jealous of you having a coach. Maybe one day I can aspire to that, it sounds luxurious. You did it!