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Thursday, January 1, 2009

Christmas - eat, drink, (swim, run!) and be merry!

I'm back from a trip to Alberta for Christmas. Lots of chocolate, wine, turkey, wine, sausage, wine, cheese, wine... you get the idea! I don't know yet how much weight I gained, but I wouldn't be surprised to see at least 5 new pounds.

I was able to keep a pretty decent training routine while I was there, though, and kept working on those Preparation period goals.

Swimming, Olympic style!

So a 10 minute walk from where I was staying in Edmonton was a facility with:
  • an Olympic-sized swimming pool
  • all-day lane swim
  • two indoor tracks
Ooooooh yeah. Amazing. It's the Kinsmen Sports Centre, built for the Commonwealth Games in Edmonton in 1978. It's a world-class facility... it's going to be hard to go back to the pee-warm 25m crowded lanes at the rec center here!

I went three times, and every time I had a full 50m lane completely to myself. Heaven!

I was so inspired, I decided it was time to test how far I could swim in one go. My longest before this was around 800m, so my first goal was 1200m, which I did without too much trouble. So I figured I'd try the 1900m half iron swim.

1900m was a bit tougher, but I did it! 51:30 - not a fast time, but I was intentionally keeping a pretty slow even pace.

I found it got easier the longer I went, I figured out ways to fight off some of the problems I was having and my form actually got better as I went. For example, my neck was getting sore because I was turning my head to breath... I managed to do a better job of rolling to the side to get air, and found myself just swimming a lot better as a result.

With 1900m in the books, 3800m looks far less daunting... I'm confident I will be able to do the distance by August, comfortably.

Cold weather running, redefined

I didn't brave the -30 and worse that greeted me when we first arrived in Alberta... kudos to those who do it, I hung out at the indoor track instead!

But I did get out in some -15 and -20. It was completely comfortable with the right layers, I was covered head to toe. I didn't stay out longer than a 1/2 hour, but I felt like I could have. It's pretty cold here in Ontario too, so I'll likely get a few more chances to challenge the elements before winter's out.

Welcome to 2009!

I'm excited and eager to get going in 2009. It's going to be an interesting year of challenges, both athletic and not, but I feel I'm ready to rise to the challenge!

Happy New Year!

1 comment:

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