Swimming 101

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Ladies and gentlemen today was a serious change of pace for me. All the fitness guru’s will tell you it is good to change your routine from time to time, to shock your body to get the progress flowing again. Well they are absolutely right and today I did just that. For the last 5 months my weight training has shifted a little here and there as far as different exercises are concerned, but not enough. My cardio has consisted of 22 minutes on the treadmill at a fast pace incline. Running with my current body weight is hell on my knees and back. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has been where 95% of my cardio has come from though, and believe me it is quite the task yet sooooo rewarding at the same time. Since my leg injury I have not been able to get on the mat and practice and I know the cardio I built has gone the way of the warrior. While speaking to a friend of mine on social media messenger we discussed what his goals were and the steps I could help him take to get there. He mentioned to me that for starters he would like to work his cardio in a swimming pool to help cut some weight and build his wind. This was a new territory to me and I had no answers. I made it a point to speak to a few of the guys at my local gym about different swimming techniques and exercises that would be helpful for just that. One gentleman told me to meet him at 3:00 and he would run me through a workout. What better way to gather information than experience right? Please keep in mind that I haven’t been in a pool other than play time with my girls in quite a few years so I was a little worried that I will perform horribly, make myself look like a fool, and waste the kind sir’s time.

Time for concern was over and it was now go time. I walked into the water and submersed my whole body to get past that chilly temperature quickly. Oldest trick in the book. He told me for starters get warmed up by swimming a lap and another lap walking. After that first lap I was already questioning what did I just get myself into? We just started and I was gassed already. Hence the walk a lap. For the record there was a little old lady in the lane next to me who spent the entire 40 min I was in the pool doing continuous laps using the overhand stroke method (insert joke here). Make no mistake I felt a bit like a wimp, and there were a couple of jokes tossed my way, but all in good fun. Remember when I told you that no one walked into the gym at the peak physical performance and in order to turn a weakness into a strength you have to be willing to suck for a while? This is why I didn’t take any jokes to seriously. My friend explained the reason she was able to truck on like that was not just because she was tougher than me, but she is using technique I didn’t have yet. I  will touch on this for a second. He cut the back stroke out of the workout because I just couldn’t get it right. Not that I was swimming blind and bumping the sides and such, but I couldn’t do it. That is on my goal list now. I spent the remainder of my 40 minutes alternating laps between 3 different techniques, and that last lap was a speed run. Half way through I was ready to give up. I could hear him saying “What if your life depended on you swimming this last distance, what if one of your kids was drowning that far out and I had to get there now, would you quit and let them drown or would you power through and get to the goal?” I took his words to heart, I pushed with everything I had left in me, my arms were reaching muscle failure, I was sucking in water, my legs were not kicking anymore, I had about 50′ left to go. I made it to the finish line without quitting. Instead of sucking air standing still, walk 2 laps so I catch my wind while still facing resistance. I did exactly that. The photo for tonight’s blog is the selfie I took when the workout was complete. I did it. Research complete kind of. I am going to be integrating this routine in with the rest of my exercise now moving forward and scraping the treadmill. It is all coming together slowly but surely. I believe in the person I am training to be, I will be a champion in my own eyes and in life. Time to make the change you want. No day like today to make it happen. I believe in you, time for you to believe in yourself. I love you guys!

 

 

JMc

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