Sunday, February 8, 2009

Speedo The Aqua Jogger

Jesus walked on water.  And I went aqua jogging today.  ~ Me

Call me a large land mammal but I'm not a swimmer....or so I thought.

I have my mom to thank for being able to swim.  She took me to swimming lessons where I learned the crawl, the sidestroke, the breastroke and back stroke. Never did parse the butterfly. 

Besides the ability to swim, all I remember is the snack bar, treading water, sitting on the bottom of the pool staring at the smooth sky and, once on the surface, being blinded by sun glinting off the rippled water, but these are enough to sustain me through 50 minutes of swimming....and a new stroke....aqua jogging.

Running has been off limits for the past month due to high hamstring bursitis. Not wanting my cardio to go in a hole, I decided to try water workouts even though I hadn't swum in decades and my bathing suits, appropriate for the bodybuilding contexts for which they were purchased, would need an upgrade to something modest and sturdy.  

Running friends with prior injuries which required similar visits to the pool were generous with their flotation devices and advice. Don't lean forward. Go during aqua aerobics and you'll have some nice music. Go to the deep end. Alternate swimming with aqua running.

In this case, the deep end was a trough in the middle of the pool, no lanes
were open during aqua aerobics, and when running in shallow water, leaning forward seemed impossible not to do. Despite not being able to implement my friends' advice perfectly, I kept my heartrate up and sure enough, did alternate swimming with running to moderate the cardio stress.

My lane partner taught me the difference between splitting lanes and circle swim and showed me the possiblity of using a snorkle in the event that I can't twist my neck.  She also taught me to jog sideways.  And the lifeguard kept pointing out open lanes for me to move to so I wouldn' t overtake.

When I finished I felt a fluidity in my body that was rare and welcome.  I think I might be hooked.

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