Monday, August 18, 2014

the final countdown

Well it is finally race week and it has certainly taken long enough to get here (sixish months since decision made to be exact…which is a ridiculous amount of time if you think about it).  The past week since my marathon of posts has been one filled with swimming, some runs, and more swimming.

In our true fashion – Mark and I planned to go to the lake on Tuesday of last week (I think it was Tuesday, who can remember that far back at this point), but both of us forgot our swim suits in order to actually go.  Mark figured this out when he went to change (which happened to be before I did) and I realized once we got back home and it was still hanging to dry on the shower rod.  What are the odds – but at least he felt bad for a bit before realizing it was my mistake as well :)  So needless to say we ran that night instead.  I went about four to five miles at an incredibly slow pace.  Must have still been recovering from the 10k the weekend before.

We finally made it to the lake on Thursday evening, and I am happy to report the water temperature had remained above 70 (in fact, at the time, the water was warmer than the air).  Now, just six more days to hover at that mark, and I do hope it stays!  Especially with the week of rain we have coming up (more on that later).  Overall the swim went well – or as well as it could have given the massive waves.  It seemed that for every two strokes you made, you went back one, so progress was slow and tiring.

But on a positive note, my new goggles worked (even with the waves all up in my face) and I finally felt comfortable in the lake.  I still haven’t swam a mile in the lake, which was my ultimate goal going up to the race, but at least now I have the confidence to do it (even if it is going to be an ugly mile). 

Friday we took the day off and then Saturday I went to the pool to swim and Mark opted for a run.  Usually we try to go to the lake on Saturday mornings, but it is tiresome to get down to the designated swim spot, especially when you are hauling all kinds of stuff on your back.  So instead of killing our backs, we opted for something more convenient. 

As I mentioned before, I may not have been able to swim a mile in the lake before the race, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t determined to do it in the pool.  With extremely minimal breaks (I’m talking three minutes or so of rest total) I pounded out 1620 meters in the pool, and could have gone for more.  I actually think I did do more and my watch must not have captured it, because 88 lengths is a mile and that distance totals 89 – but I finished on the same end I started with so something doesn’t add up.  Either way – it doesn’t make a difference.  I was happy I finally got my mile of swimming in somewhere ahead of the race and also very proud of my accomplishment.  Let’s not forget I didn’t know how to swim (read: only could doggy paddle) when the training for this whole thing started…and now I can swim a mile without hardly stopping!  Luckily I had some good coaches to teach me the ropes.

As far as this week goes, I will be keeping my workouts to a minimum with shorter, more intense intervals for the taper to race day.  I will also be watching the weather report anxiously.  Here’s a current view –

Not very promising, is it?  Although it seems that the weather changes every time I look, and of course every station is different.  I’ll just be crossing my fingers and hoping for the best.

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