Return to the Water

Well, after 3 weeks of hobbling around, I have returned to the water. I can't do flip turns yet, so I've resigned myself to swimming slow and doing the old hang-on-the wall open turns.

Looking back at my blog posts, I see that they are filled with pictures of the beautiful scenery and open water venues that I was blessed to experience this summer. I even included a picture of the spectacular outdoor 50 meter pool that I was training in part-time. However to be fair, I should show you where I have done most of my training over the last 3 years: the Lake Oswego High School Pool.

LO Pool 2

Photograph by Bob Needham

The first thing that quickly becomes apparent from the pictures, is that this pool was built in the 60's pillbox style. Not so spectacular or inviting, but it's where so much of my hard work has been done, and will be done, in preparation for my open water swims. The second thing you'll notice is that when I showed up to workout, I had nearly the entire pool to myself. Simply wonderful.

LO Pool 1

Photograph by Bob Needham

Schollander Gold 3

The city of Lake Oswego is best known in swimming circles as the home of Don Schollander, who in 1964 became the first person to win 4 Gold Medals in swimming at a single Olympics. Don moved to Santa Clara to pursue his Olympic dreams, but he later returned to Lake Oswego. He now shares his Olympic Gold Medals with the community, having graciously lent them for a public display. Don can be regularly seen at the pool exhibiting his world class form. He's a great inspiration to me on those days when I'm in the pool but lacking the necessary motivation.

While my race season was frustratingly short this year, I am grateful that I have able to get back into the water so quickly. However, it will take 2 to 3 weeks until I am ready to return to hard training in the pool. 

In the meantime, I will be on my bike propped up on a trainer watching old Tour de France tapes (they really are tapes), and swimming long slow workouts. I have 12 months and counting tp prepare for my attempt to swim the Catalina Channel, and I am excited to get started.

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