Thursday, March 7, 2013

Finding My Way

How do I get through this? This was my thought as I began my swim. Yesterday, was a pretty good workout for me. And, I could feel some overall residual fatigue from it. On my last twenty miles of a sixty mile bike, a friend of mine, my age, a better biker, found me on the course. My plans were just to slack on through this last twenty miles and do a two mile brick run; slow and steady. But, that didn’t work out. My friend and I set a good pace and held it. Thank God, I was able to keep up with him. Oh, but I dreaded that two mile brick run. Surprisingly, it went really well. The fatigue beginning the swim had me a little concerned. This was the day I was to attempt my longest ever swim: three miles. Just didn’t feel up for this at all. But, I had travelled sixty plus miles to get to the pool. Sheer economics, fuel costs and such, told me this was something I have invested in; something I need to do. I felt like a water-plow the first few laps and thought that maybe I should save myself and this effort for another day. My will and want to must have stayed at home today. The early laps involved some serious self-talk. When I had a few laps behind me, I figured the percentage of the total swim done to find the level of which I was vested in this swim. Vested enough, I figured , would be like closing the back door and minimizing my chances of quitting. I was trying to drive myself into a corner where the only choice left was to finish. And, I prayed for strength. There was always enough for one more lap. One more lap, one more lap and I became seriously vested in this. There reached a point at around a mile and half when I was for certain I was not going to quit. That sort of freed me to start enjoying this somewhat. My shoulder – the one I had rotator cuff surgery on – hurt some. I got cramps in my left foot. My neck muscles hurt some but , lap after lap brought me closer to the goal. Other swimmers came and went, others came, others went, I still plodded on, lap after lap. The last few laps were not as difficult as I would have imagined. I was not as spent as I would have imagined. And, I had swam farther than I ever imagined I ever could. Thanks God. And perhaps, the most important training I got today was not the fitness or endurance from the long swim, but personal training in finding a way even when things are not working so well, and I don’t really feel all that great.