Monday, August 1, 2011

BAM 2 mile Swim

OK, since it's been a looooong time since I have put up a race report, I'll go ahead and tell you about this little 2 mile swim I did yesterday at the Boulder Rez!  It was one of those last minute dealios - on Wednesday night CV sent out the email asking if we wanted to do the swim!  Sounded like fun to me, especially since it's been awhile since I've even been in a wetsuit let alone a race!  Count me in!

Funny though, it was just a part of a looooooong training day so I really wasn't nervous or excited or anything else.  Just a great opportunity to see how my swimming felt - and I was very curious about that since my swim yardage hasn't been really BIG or anything (not like PIC's!!).   Plus, I love hanging out with Ang, Son, and CV so hey - let's go!

I signed up for the wetsuit swim but the water at the Rez is a balmy 75 degrees and I was wishing I had the new TYR sleeveless wetsuit or had enough time to grab my TYR speedsuit from the car.  Oh well.  With a pure swim start (not a tri start) I wasn't quite sure where to line up.....I scoped out everyone on the front line and tried to figure out who the fast guys were.  I think I had figured it out and lined up next to them. The start was as violent as any I have been in!!  And this was for a 2 mile swim!!  I got hit, kicked, swum over, dragged under.  For a 2 mile swim!  I just kept swimming and hoping the madness would end at some point....soon!  I found myself at the back of a group of about 6 or 7 so I figured it was a great time to practice drafting.  The poor guy next to me - either I was all over the place or he was all over the place but we just kept running into each other.  I was at his hip so actually it was me continually running into him.  We started down the long back stretch of the 2-loop course and I was working pretty good but I felt OK in the group.

As we made our way towards the start of the second loop I was resigned to continually running into the guy next to me for another lap.  But then he turned off for the 1 mile finish.  Crap!  I looked up and I was an island!  He had let the other swimmers in front of us get ahead by a few meters and I was unable to bridge the gap.  They weren't getting any further ahead of me but I couldn't catch them.  On the long back stretch I started to feel a breathing cramp come on.  I tried to relax but it kept coming and then suddenly it was there and it hurt!  I had to roll on my back and float for the cramp to release - as I did this I realized I really was an island.  I couldn't see anyone behind me!  I rolled back over and the group had gotten away.  Darn.  I started swimming again.  The cramp took hold again.  I rolled on my back again.  I was wondering if a kayak was going to come over and help me!  At this point I could see the finish directly across from me and seriously considered just backstroking across and calling it a day.  But, of course, I kept going.  I had to go into a kind of cool-down mode and really stretch out my stroke in order to breathe.  One more back roll and I know I would make it to the finish.  Alone.

Finally on the beach I was done!  Dang, I forgot how far the near-Ironman swim was.  I couldn't hear my time as I was trying to get out of my wetsuit as fast as possible - I was darn hot.  As it turns out, I managed a 3rd place finish for the wetsuits with my back float in around 47:30ish!  Not bad:)  And, it is always good to learn something about yourself in a low-pressure race environment.  Pace is everything and I need to be careful about swimming with the big sharks!!  I probably could have been a bit faster if I had paced the first lap a bit better and then avoided the breathing cramp.  But, then again, I wouldn't have had all that great drafting practice.

Of course, the day had barely begun.  It was time to eat and get on the bikes for a hard effort up to Brainard Lake.  Yikes, my legs were complaining and my heart rate was rising.  And did I mention it was hot out?  As in 2 bottles gone in an hour.  There were times in the canyon that there was no breeze just the heat.  It was stifling.  But since I signed up for this craziness, I am not complaining.  Well maybe a little bit.

Back to the Rez 4 hours later and it was time for a run-off.  It had to be a cool 100 degrees at that point and absolutely no cover.  The water in my hand bottle was as hot as the air and I forgot my hat even though that wouldn't have helped much.  No relief.  But, I signed up for this.  I'm all in.  Ang, PIC and I ended up at the swim beach where we proceeded to get back in the water sans wetsuits, swim out to one of the decks and cool-off.  The day was done.  It was time for cold showers and food.

Good times!!

1 comment:

Veronica B. said...

Holy crap girl! What a day! And SO FAST in the water! And..uh...I could TOTALLY do a training day like that without dying if I didn't work full-time. Uh...really...

Seriously, well done, rockstar.