Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Finally a real swim...

Swimming is my least favorite part. I like running and biking and I guess I consider swimming a necessary evil.

It's not that it's all bad. There is times that I can get in the zone at the pool and it's awesome. Unfortunately that's about 1 % of the time.

For the longest time I thought it was just because I was doing serious workouts with sets and all that. Then I pretty much retired from Ironman racing, or at minimum gave up the structured workouts and it really didn't get much better.

It was different for sure. I little less difficult and the mind set is not as intense but it didn't make it super wonderful or anything.

To get through these feelings I figured maybe I'd like swimming if I just did 30 minutes and had it unstructured sets. Just swim and maybe mix up with free style, then just hand paddles and then kick with the board.

It didn't make me like swimming but it did make it bearable. I also wish Einstein was alive because I'd like to let him know that I figured out a way to lengthen time. Thirty minutes in the pool can seem like a life time. Like the hands of the clock stand still.

Today was the day I decided to get back in the pool, for a real swim and by a real swim I mean for at least an hour.

My body is starting to feel a little beat up and I was on the fence about just taking a day off all together and not training. Then the more I thought of it I thought swimming would be a great recovery day. In addition to some physical benefit the water is cooler and always good for muscle recovery.

It was actually a pretty pleasant swim. Wearing my underwater iPod helps for sure. At least I have music pumping through my ears.

The swim was one of those swims where time flew by. If swimming could feel like this every time I swim I'd swim at least one day a week....let's not get too carried away, it's still swimming and swimming is not the most fun. Mind you if you were whacked out on LSD or something it might be fun.

Have never been pushed over the edge on swimming that far to try LSD but it could be fun. I have had beer and swam and that's definitely more fun now that I think about it.

What I don't get about swimming is that you can get stronger from it. In many ways I feel that doing swimming is a very slow way to get in shape. Perhaps its that I don't push it in my swimming and even when I did, I never really felt sore or a super pump of the muscles.

Yet I know it does work at building muscle. I think top swimmers have some of the best physiques in the world. Swimming is a slow burn when it comes to muscle building and body shaping.

I think I've only swam about 2 or 3 times in the past 6 or 7 months and they were all 30 minutes or less. Today I bang out a full hour that totalled 3200 meters.

As I was swimming I recognized that I'm at least now in decent shape. To go from nothing and bang out 3200 meters is pretty good, even though I'm not fast. I do remember times in the past that I got in the pool and was so out of shape that at one point I didn't think I'd be able to do more than 400 meters.

That feeling did not happen this time. In fact I felt like an athlete once again, albeit a slow one.

It was worth doing the hour long swim. It took about 45 minutes until I started feeling a slight pump in my arms and shoulders. Just getting that feeling made it all feel worth while, like I was doing something. The strange part was the time my shoulders hurt most was when I was using a kick board and wasn't even using my arms, I just had them stretched forward on the board for 700 yards of kicking.

After the swim I took a nice 25 minute hot tub in the hopes that it would aid my recovery. It was super relaxing just sitting with an open mind after an hour plus swim.

There is a downside to swimming for an hour for the first time in a long time. It's called muscle building and water retention. I know for sure tomorrow my weight will be up. All day I could feel the soreness in my arms and shoulders and the only way for the body to get rid of that is to retain water and repair the muscle. I have a feeling tomorrow's daily weigh in will not be an ego boost.

The other thing today's swim identified is I'm "soft". It's like I have this layer of fat under the skin that I'm just not used to. It's the weirdest thing in that I can feel muscle underneath the fat but it's really far underneath the fat. It's like I have this super loose skin the thickness of a cow hide above it.

When I look at my chest I swear I have boobies. I'm not sure if it's my mind playing tricks on me because they say if you have a over active thyroid you can grow man boobs or if it's just that in my head. I do know that I'm not as tight as I used to be. It's like there is me in there but there is this coating of loose skin around me.

Don't get me wrong, it's getting to become less and less skin but I'm not kidding myself, although I'm no longer rolly polly I easily have 10 lbs of fat that I need to lose. I'm not kidding myself. With 10 more pounds lost that will definitely make a big difference.

The more I think about it and think, I do see there is another 20 lbs I could lose. In a way I see myself losing weight as a symbol of me shedding my skin to show the real person inside. It's weird in that I see myself looking person from the inside than I do from the outside. In the past when I've been down to 185 or less pounds my true self in my minds eye appears.

Diet wise, everyday is ground hog day. I get up, weigh myself, I have a coffee, maybe juice, popcorn, then a meal for dinner and repeat. Then if I don't drop weight I get a little bummed and look forward to getting to sleep and seeing if I was able to lose weight today.

The weight loss is tough. It seems if I don't do something radical like juicing my weight loss is about 1 lbs per week being strict about it. In the last 30 day window looked back and it's been a 6 lb weight loss. That's it.

Even though that is what Weight Watchers recommends, 1 - 2 lbs per week, it's just not enough for me or fair. Especially when I'm training hard as well.

Today I also managed to slip out to the bike store to take in my bike to get the aero bar pads fixed. I broke them on an early indoor training ride by using them correctly. I put my upper body weight on them as I rode and they snapped. Both of them.

When I took it into the show the mechanic saw them right away and mentioned, "not again". I've been snapping these things near every year, albeit the others were the lighter version. These were the first times I snapped the heavy duty version that he assured me when he put them on were unbreakable.

Rest of the night was work and I drank a ton of water. When I went to bed I was in the 197 lb range due to the water. I know for sure my weight will be up tomorrow.

The upside was the Dairy Queen Ice Cream cakes was eyeballing me before bed and I didn't blink. I won tonight's battle with it.

Swimming 1:08 / 3.2 km
194.2 lbs

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