The Zen of swimming

July 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

If I were to imagine an ideal scenario for swimming laps, it would look a lot like living in the house above and just walking outside to go get my laps in. I would love to have a lane to myself in a quiet place with gorgeous surroundings. Alas, for now I must join the huddled masses sharing lanes and being pushed about by other people’s wakes, gulping chlorinated water from time to time.

Even with a crowded pool I’m remembering how good it feels to swim. When I was younger and swimming on a Summer team it was always about length and time. I swam a 50-free in about :28 – :30 sec at my best. No record breaking time by any means but not bad for a Summer swimmer.

Now that I’m not looking at swimming competitively I can focus on just relaxing and enjoying the swim. It’s nice to just turn your brain off a bit and get into the rhythm of it. When I first got going I found myself wanting to push myself to go fast but then I just relaxed and focused on breathing. When I was younger yoga wasn’t anywhere near as mainstream as it is now so I didn’t have it as a frame of reference at the time, but swimming reminds me a lot of doing yoga. In many ways it’s even easier to turn your brain off because you can’t see or hear a whole lot. You’re also forced to get your breathing under control.

This week I was able to complete the first week of training of 700 yards per swim pretty easily. I have a feeling it will get a bit harder from here on out but I do find it is easier when you just take it slow. You still feel amazing when you’re done without pushing it.



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