I’m back and Amy is going to Kona

by hhf3

Apologies for the lack of posts recently; I was traveling the past ten days. Things like “email” and “blogging” fell by the wayside in favor of “going to the pool” and “spectating at Ironman Lake Placid.” All in all, it was a really great trip, and of course: too short.

The early portion of the week was spent at home with my family. Got to go to the pool several times, officiate a swim meet (and disqualify someone who started swimming freestyle in the backstroke… silly), tour a swank retirement home for my grandmother, get brunch with a high school friend, and shirk all my duties as president of the American Planning Association chapter at my graduate school. 
Also got a few decent workouts in during the trip. For some reason, swimming at the pool makes me feel really, really slow. I grew up swimming there, surely I should be used to all the jets and the very shallow shallow end, but still, felt slow in the water. I must have been compensating for the jets pushing me around because my elbows started to hurt, meaning my technique was off. Not a good feeling, but it is nice to swim outdoors. Ran a bit, too. One 30 minute run easy, one track workout, and one semi-tempo run while in Lake Placid. Also while in Lake Placid, I got to swim the Ironman course (the race is done with 2 1.2 mile loops). Once I got my stroke together (not used to sighting), I felt AMAZING in the water. I only intended to swim about 20 minutes, but ended up swimming the whole 1.2 miles. I suspect it took me around 30-35 minutes. Passed just about everyone else swimming (they were all in wetsuits) except for one guy who swam next to me for maybe a quarter of a mile before *finally* pulling in front of me. While I know everyone was swimming easy pace to prepare for the actual race, I wasn’t swimming very hard either (except for about 20 yards to sort out my stroke), so I feel super confident for the swim portion of the triathlon next weekend. I was also proud of myself for not panicking much in the water (I did for about 10 seconds when I started swimming due to seeing plants underwater, but once I couldn’t see anything, I was fine). I cannot remember ever doing a lake/river/ocean swim before without fighting off a panic attack at some point during it. I read Swimming to Antarctica earlier this year, and actually had to put down the book at one point because reading the author’s descriptions of her open water swims made me panicky. Not sure what changed between now and then, but I’m not questioning it. I am now hoping to dominate the swim during the Cleveland Triathlon (less than a week!!!) since it is unlikely I could dominate the other two disciplines.
I’ll write about Lake Placid more later, but I’ll give you this spoiler now… okay it’s not really a spoiler since Amy is probably the lone reader of this blog… but AMY IS GOING TO KONA. Yes, the world championships for Ironman. Not only does Amy finish her first Ironman, she beats her goal time by 20-odd minutes, PRs her marathon time, gets second in her age group, and scores a spot to Kona through the roll-down (first place girl already qualified this year). I kid you not. This girl is baller. Read her blog here. Hopefully she’ll post her race report soon, and hopefully I’ll get around to writing about my side of things: support, sherpa, and security! 
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