The Sound of Sunshine

It’s suprising to  write two posts in less than a 48 hour span of time, but I just came back from a swimming lesson with my coach and heard The Sound of Sunshine playing on the radio, which has a couple lyrics about learning to swim, and was inspired to write a post on swimming (my thought process is odd). The swim lesson was good. I continue to learn so much about swimming and how important it is in a triathlon race.

In all honesty, I have a love/hate relationship with swimming. In fact, I think I tend to err on the bipolar side whenever anyone asks how swimming is going.

“Oh, it’s great–best activity and sport out there! Works every muscle in your body, I feel fantastic after a workout.”

Or, quite possibly less than two hours later, my response could be:

“F—ing stupid sport in water, whoever invented it should be PUNISHED. It’s stupid and I hate it! Who works out in WATER?”

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve tried to meet up with my coach atleast once a week for a swim lesson. Yes, I am not ashamed to say that I have swimming lessons and am in my 20’s.Had I continued with the swim team/spending time in a pool after the age of 13, I wouldn’t have needed the lessons. Then again, pool swimming and triathlon swimming are quite different. Main difference is that triathlons are usually in open water, and the water is not chlorinated. Right now, my sessions in the pool on my own are still composed of doing drills, and then some are just LSD (long slow distance) swims. I have no plans on ever becoming a member of another swim team again in my life, but do plan on continuing to do triathlons in the future (if, that is, I don’t die doing Mooseman, which is a possibility).

What are the drills?
  • The one arm drill: where you have your left arm extended underwater and then just stroke with your right arm, making sure you have a high elbow and enter with your arm above the head  doing that for a hundred or so yards, and then switch arms.
  • Catch up: where both arms are still below the water, but when you go to stroke with your right arm you reach past the left arm under the water, and then when you stroke with your left arm, you reach past the right hand. There is a lot of extension involved–extending the stroking arm past the other arm.
  • Swimming using Finis Forearm Fulcrum Paddles which helps your arm entry form ( whenever I use them feel like I am drowning) and hand paddles (which show you if you are bending your hand or not in water–you feel resistance if you are doing it wrong–I was always meeting resistance).

Swimming is simply hard. Trying to remember to pretend I’m diving into a barrel but keeping my elbows up our of the water (who does that?) then having my fingers impact the water first–and fingers snug against each other. Using my abdominal muscles to keep my butt up so that my legs don’t sink when I take a breath (she notices these things). Whenever I go to take a breath, one goggle should be in the water, and I need to look back behind towards my armpit while breathing and doing the stroke. Remembering to keep my legs together, and kick from my heels, not my knees. It not only takes being in good shape to be a swimmer, but being mentally capable of remembering all these things whilst doing them that gets to me.

My coach likes to end sessions on a good note, and as time was running out, i just swam fifty yards, which, she said, was perfect. “It looked like you were just swimming, not thinking about everything I was having you do, like your brain turned off, and, you just swam.”


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Corbin Kappler
    Feb 24, 2011 @ 13:14:52

    I couldn’t relate more with your love hate relationship and swimming. When I am actually in the pool, I love it. I am trying to remove the thought that swimming is a choice. For my training, it just must be done. This is helping me.

    Have a good swim,


  2. theasphere
    Mar 02, 2011 @ 00:35:17

    One of my most favorite songs and by far my most favorite musicians is bringing you some light, love it! Train Molly train, you are doing a great job!


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February 2011

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