Saturday, September 6, 2008

BIg Shoulders Swim on a great day



Well, the athlete voice won out at 7:35 this morning, and I got up, had coffee and got out the door and biked to the Big Shoulders race. This was a personal triumph for me!!! In the grand scheme of things, finishing a 2.5K swim is not a big deal when I read on blogs about some of the incredible things people are doing, Karl Meltzer and the ultra running adventures of Olga and her merry crew of ultra friends, and my friend Judy, who finishes an Olympic distance triathlon while having a full time finance job, living in Manhattan and after having 3 boys!!! Are you getting the reason why I feel like a slacker???
 
        So, the conversation between athlete Jeannie and slacker Jeannie went like this, this morning at 6:35 when my alarm went off, 
S : Oh, it is only 6:35 I can sleep another 1/2 hour, then get up, have coffee and be able to get to the race on time.
So I go back to sleep and the alarm rings at 7:05
S: Oh, I can sleep another 10 minutes and then get up
A: If I don't do this race it will be another year before I have a chance and I know if I don't do it I will be really disappointed in myself.
S:Oh, the water will probably be really cold, I am so out of shape, I will feel horrible in the water. This bed feels so warm and cozy...................
The alarm goes off...
I hit the snooze again
S:Oh, I still have time, it is not my drop dead time yet...this bed feels so comfortable, I am so out of shape do I really want to put myself through the torture of a race?
A: I have been so fearful of life things lately, this is a great way to face my physical fears, this swim is nothing, it is just the first leg of a triathlon, I have been a slacker for far too long and deep down I really do want to do this race, I will be really, really disappointed in myself if I don't do it. At the very worst I can do breast stroke the entire time and finish and there will be people doing a 5k, so I know worst case I can finish.
S: This bed feels so great, the water is going to feel so cold, I am so out of shape...
A: I will be disappointed, I don't want to be disappointed, I have to face my fears and this one is an easy one..
The alarm goes off at 7:40
A:Uh oh, the first wave starts at 8:00 and my wave goes off at 8:20, I had better make coffee and book it out of here..I guess if I miss my wave I wasn't meant to do it.....

             Well, I got out of the apartment, ran into Lee an old friend from my Masters Swim team days at the East Bank Club, I always seem to run into Lee at these kind of events, he was the first one I ran into the last time I did the Accenture triathlon.
             The one thing about swimming which is good and bad, there are all shapes and sizes, which is good because I don't feel like the fattest most out of shape person out there, but swimming fitness is deceiving, because some of those out of shape looking people are very fast despite their appearance,  so my excuse for not training (my slacker mind is great at coming up with reasons for why not) concentrating on a sport that doesn't necessarily make you thinner isn't necessarily a good one for me. 
             Anyways, the short of the race, I finished, it was ugly, and as I am swimming parallel to the LakeFront I see all these CARA running groups, it is amazing the number of people that are involved in the marathon training pace groups and of course, my slacker, low self esteem thought while swimming in the water was, "wow..all these people are out first thing in the morning running, wow, I really need to get my butt out the door and train more for distance races" But I will say I felt strong towards the end of the race, it felt great to swim, the water was amazingly clean, perfect temperature, the day was beautiful and I am SOOOOOOOO happy I DID IT!!!!!!!!!!! But I am happy that I swam in a lake, no matter how big Lake Michigan is rather than an ocean. The first buoy felt like it took forever to get to and I didn't have to worry about any sea creatures, just random algae strands.
           So the plan for next weekend is action packed, yoga at Yogaview with Tim Miller which is always really inspirational and then Saturday I am going to see the happy goat cheese people on a trip with Pastoral, and then Sunday I have the Chicago Half Marathon,  and then work at the store. But for once, the slacker was put at bay!!!!!
But Olga at her blog has this quote which I keep posted and remind myself of:
  "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive!!!!!!" from Howard Thurman
But it is so true, and I am trying to do and not think about things.....And I do feel more alive after doing the swim.....so progress!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yeah........

           Ciao Jeannie