Sunday, July 13, 2008

Would you like one breath, or two...with your swim?

Sunday mornings are turning into my "swim with fellow Triabetes athlete, Joe Brady" day. Not that I mind, it's exactly what I need both in pushing me to pretend to be a triathlete AND to feel the camaraderie of the team. Joe was trying out his second wetsuit of the season, a two piece deal he saw Larry Smith wearing while at Diabetes Training Camp in Chicago. We had a good chuckle as we figured out which one was better and he claimed the new one to be more buoyant as we sat in the middle of the lake with his feet out.
Open water swimming has been a bit tricky in these parts as flooding has made some less-than-idea lakes even less-ideal. Lake Ripley in Cambridge had more recent flooding but the quality was do-able (not tasty, but do-able). We swam just inside the buoys to avoid the boats, me with my tingling left arm (what the hell is causing that?) while I concentrated on relaxing my legs, as I am pretty prone to leg cramps because I'm so tense in the water.
Joe tells me that during his open water swim classes, Dave is teaching him to breathe on every stroke - long, deep strokes, each time. I'm going to try this next time I'm out, but I cautioned Joe that he needs to learn several methods and here is my "I've been-there-done-that" advice from Ironman 06. Wind, rain, and waves bigger than your head smacking you in your face gives you the option of what breathing pattern you choose. If you are an even side breather, you're screwed if you are used to breathing left...and can only breathe right. My advice is to practice breathing in 3s, 4s, 5s and 7s. It also gives me something to think about while swimming.
It's been fun training with another triabetic athlete. If you are ever in the neighborhood and would like to join us, give me a shout!
Now, whether or not you take my swimming advice, you are at your own risk considering my excellent skills didn't stop me from swimming smack into a buoy. Nice sighting on my part, eh?


Unknown said...

We did Ripley a couple times last weekend, not too bad.
We swam in Lake Michigan at North Beach today ---- waters beautiful but COLD (53 degrees). Hopin it warms up by next weekend or SORT!!!

Anne Findlay said...

what's the verdict on sleeveless wetsuits though? meaning, will I get hot in Lake Manona in a full wetsuit? I may need to buy another one anyway since mine seems to be falling apart. congrat's on getting out there. maybe Joe can give you some advice on sighting. :)

Michelle said...

The water averages 79 degrees on race day in Lake Monona! For me, it's perfect and I love it, but for you, since you are used to 50 degree water, I would guess you'll be warm!

But my personal advice is to tell you to just by ONE wetsuit you can use on all races - don't waste the money for one race...

PS Yeah, Joe IS trying to teach me to sight! I suck!