Saturday, January 8, 2011

Swimming


For much of my college career my fitness workout was swimming on the B squad of the swim team. I remember it as the days before heated pools and women coaches. I also remember being so exhausted and cold I could only lean against the shower wall and throw up. Not exactly warm fuzzy images but I was in awesome shape. Needless to say it did not leave me with a overpowering desire to swim laps.

Point of fact for years my swimming became really informal: Swimming to shore after the canoe tipped over, challenging my sister once a summer to across the lake and back, seeing how long I could back float without moving a muscle, and a scuba course. I also played around with other ways of staying fit: aerobics, bicycling, jogging, skiing and dance classes. All of which seem to be bad for the knees, back or feet. After my ski accident my physical therapist steered me back to the pool. Damn if I was going to swim laps! However, aqua fit was just getting rather seriously taken so I took it. It reminded me of just how much I love water. Especially now that pools are heated.

And just recently I have gotten back to those laps, but no male coach on the edge of the pool with a megaphone. Swimming laps is now considered an excellent form of cardio workout. And laps with fins give you really nice legs and butt. And I love the Zen space swimming laps transports me to.

Yesterday when the workout got abbreviated due to the mechanical problems with my friend's car I almost went into withdrawal. I ditched weight machines at the spa and headed straight for the pool where I feverishly proceeded to try and get as many laps in as I would have gotten with more time. I did save time for 15 minutes of aqua exercises divided into warm up and cool down but it was the laps that were clearly the most important in my mind. Doing my 25 to 30 laps makes me high.

This morning, needing a new spa suit, I opted not for the one that will look best at the edge of the Jacuzzi but one rather close to the old Speedos of my youth that never drag you down or slip off your shoulders. I don't exactly have my old Speedo shape. Too much time in the studio and not enough in the pool. But I am working on it. And having fun doing it.

1 comment:

  1. This post makes me wish I were a swimmer. I didn't even learn to swim until high school. Though both of my parents were/are excellent strong swimmers, they didn't pass that along to me.

    But it reminds me of how good all aerobic exercise feels. For me it has been walking, and more recently bicycling. Our bodies produce those feel-good chemicals that maks us upbeat and energetic long after the workout is over. I've neglected my routine too long, and I'm eager to get back into it.

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