Friday was our first full day at the cottage, and the day of my first open water swim! I put on my Garmin and used the kayak to measure the distance between an anchored dock and an anchored water trampoline toy that were in front of the cottage. They were out there deep enough that I couldn’t touch, but it was a nice surprise when I put my face in the water that I could still see the bottom. I was happy they were out there so I wasn’t forced to do an out-and-back across the lake. After some quick math I figured out I would just have to do two laps around the two points and then head back to shore and it would be just over what the distance for the sprint tri would be. It didn’t look bad at all, so I was feeling pretty confident.
I went back inside and put on my wetsuit. I stood in the water and talked to the neighbors for a few minutes before heading out. I was confident that I could do it, but I was still very nervous. I have never liked being in water where you could touch stuff like weeds. I grew up with a pool, so I never went to a lake to swim as a kid. Even when my family had a boat out on Lake Michigan when I was young, I’d always make my dad carry me to shore after he anchored the boat. My husband told me he saw a snapping turtle in the lake a long time ago, and I never forgot it! haha So it was in the back of my mind before I headed out. I started swimming and felt like I was flying through the water in that suit. My husband was kayaking near me in case I needed to be rescued or just needed help staying on course. That honestly was the worst part was just staying on course. I was basically swimming a straight line between the two points and I was amazed at how hard that was without “pool lines” at the bottom to guide you. I would swim a few strokes and lift my head to check where I was. It quickly threw off my breathing, but I don’t know how else to do it. I would have been swimming way off course had I not done that or had my husband not been there. It was much harder than I anticipated! I’m very happy I’ll have one more weekend to practice before race day. I may just have to try to stick with the pack on race day and risk getting kicked in the face (yet another one of those fears!). When I felt like I needed recovery, I flipped over to my back. I was bummed that I needed more recovery time than I had hoped. But, 13:51 for 514 meters on my first time out is completely fine with me! It’s a journey and I know I will make improvements if I continue to put in the work.
I was pretty focused on the swim except around one of the turn around points when I kept feeling stuff on my hands. I kept telling myself it was only the long wetsuit zipper pull I was feeling, even though I knew it was weeds. I don’t know why that grosses me out so much, but I can’t stand it! I got through it though and I am actually very excited to try again and see if I can cut some time off and get better about staying on course.
That night for dinner we made our own ‘tortilla pizza’s.’ We use tortilla shells (I use Udi’s GF shells even though they make GF pizza crusts too) as the crust, and then doctor them up however we like. I made a vegan one with some yummy toppings like mushrooms, red and green peppers, red onion, fresh basil, dried oregano and crushed red peppers. It was so good! We went out on the pontoon and watched some fireworks that night before we headed to bed.
Saturday morning I convinced my husband to run 6 miles with me. He runs, but not regularly. I think he could be an incredible runner if he had the time to train regularly. He always does great at races where he only gets in a few training runs. He has more of an interest in cycling though, so I’m happy we can share that interest too! I am so grateful he likes to accompany me on my runs up north so I’m not alone. I run much slower than he does, so for him to come out and run that at my pace was no big deal for him ;). He’s the best! We ran some big hills on dirt trails through the woods, some gravel paths, and paved roads. It was a great mix! It’s always so nice to run up north because it’s so peaceful up there. We finished at 59:40, 9:57 pace. I was ok with that considering the tricky footing at a few spots in the woods.
After the run we spent some time on the beach. My daughter and her cousin made sand castles and played in the water all afternoon. That’s the neighbors dog in the picture who clearly loves playing in the water too! We are heading to my parents house today for a pool party. So let the 4th of July festivities continue! 🙂