Saturday, July 17, 2010

swimming backwards

Since I missed a swim this week due to bad weather, I decided to do the Sawbellies 2 Mile Open Water Swim Race today in Canandaigua Lake. I swim in this lake all the time (as much as 2x per week recently). I figured it would be great practice for Placid and fun to socialize with teammates. There were several TT members doing this race. Ken, Joe, Jochen, Jo (a Syracuse girl who I just met today), and myself. Imagine my surprise when the normally calm Canandaigua Lake had some major chop (it was really windy out). The 2 mile course was 2 loops of the buoys where you had to get out of the water and run across the timing mat, and then dive back in, just like Placid!

This is my race recap. I got pummeled in the face with waves for 1 hour and 14 minutes. The end.

It should not take me that long to swim 2 miles. I am annoyed. I know I shouldn't care. I do not come from a competitive swimming background. My swimming background is: swimming lessons as a child, lifeguard training, WSI training, reading Total Immersion, and 2 months of masters swimming. That's it. I swam without a wetsuit and it was really choppy. But man, I was SLOW. Oh well.

I want to talk a little about my IMLP race plan. I'm not going to divulge it. It's private. Mary sent it to me and it's for Mary's eyes and my eyes. But I will say that it is not very "set." What I mean by this is that Mary did not tell me to split particular times in each leg. I have more of a range that I am supposed to be within. My overall goal finish time is actually a quite broad range. She specifically said that for me she wanted to stay away from tight timelines (perhaps this is just because I am new and this is my first Ironman, but I think it's more than just that). Now I don't know what anyone elses plan looks like because those plans are for those people's eyes. But I think this shows just how well Mary knows me. It's honestly pretty crazy how well Mary knows me, since I have been working with her for less than a year.

Mary knows that I am a "numbers girl." I stare at my Garmin trying to hit a particular HR. If she told me to go split such and such a time on my bike, I would probably kill myself trying to hit that time, even if the conditions were slowing me down.

We have been working on "racing naked" (as I like to call it!) and so far it has really worked for me. This means I race by perceived exertion and by feel. For races, I lose the HR monitor. I don't even look at my speed on the bike. I only check my pace on the run in the beginning and that's so I know if I need to slow down. So I will be racing Placid equipped with just a watch which will show my overall time, a computer on my bike to show me my overall bike time, and my Garmin on the run so I can keep track of my pace early on. That's it. No powermeter, no megabattery life Garmin for the entire race, no heart rate. I don't want to get lost in data. I want to race. I know and trust my body more than any piece of equipment. That is what I will be paying attention to on race day. It worked for Tinman and the mini-Mussel, and I have faith that it will work at Placid as well!

Also, check out Mary's blog post for today, where she is profiling all of the IMLP athletes! Today it's myself and Matt the speedo boy! :)


  1. I love this: "I don't want to get lost in data. I want to race. I know and trust my body more than any piece of equipment." You are going to ROCK your race!

  2. I got my butt kicked in 2/3 of my HIM swims this year due to heavy chop. I was 2.5 and 4 mins off of my HIM swim PR because of it. You are gonna rock Mirror Lake!

    Either way, you are going to PR this Ironman. You have no choice! Then you can CRUSH it @ IMCDA next year. 8 days!!!!


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