I haven't done any art work in a while, Brenna and I are getting over colds, which also means I haven't taken pictures of much. So, I think I will tell you a story over the next couple of days......
Have you ever thought about why you do what you do?
Not just in art, or blogging, but if someone says, "Hey! You should give this a try!" Before you know it, you are waist deep into their suggestion.
Would you like to know what I am waist deep into right now?
I can hardly believe it myself.
In two weeks,
I'm going to do an ultra-sprint triathalon.
Please. Please notice the words "ultra-sprint" here, and not so much the triathalon part.
I might need to explain a few things first.
Let's begin with my athletic ability.
My p.e. teacher in junior high told my Dad I was horrible at p.e., and my mom just revealed that between me and the awful swim teacher I had as a kid, she didn't think I would ever learn to swim. I was on a co-ed softball team in my early twenties. I played catcher. Not very well. For instance, when I threw the ball back to the pitcher, it would bounce before it reached him and if a run was coming in, I ran behind the fence to the pitcher could take over. I was pretty brave, though, really.
I didn't seriously begin exercising until I was about 38. I don't run well. It hurts my hips. I can do weights and have really learned to like spin class and kick-boxing over the years. Forget step class. I love my YMCA. I like to walk. I like the eliptical and treadmill machines. I have never learned to skate or roller skate and I have NEVER been on a pair of skiis. Nor do I plan to. I like bowling. I'm pretty good at WII bowling...but I digress.
So, when my friend from my beloved YMCA said, "Hey! You should give this a try!" She was talking about this here triathalon. It's all women and it raises awareness for Ovarian Cancer. When I realized she was serious, well, I have to admit. I was flattered. It seemed doable. I mean, a full blown Ironman Triathalon is a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride and then a full marathon. The Olympic distance is .93 mile swim, 24 miles on a bike and a 6 mile run. Then there is the Sprint distance. It is a .6 mile swim, a 12 mile bike ride and a 3 mile run. My husband does the Sprint distance. With ease.
Then there's mine.
The ULTRA SPRINT.
1/3 mile swim. 6 mile bike ride. 1.5 mile run.
It is an open water swim. But I like the beach, right? I've always played in the water. How hard could it be to swim it?
I began by calling Brenna's previous swim coach and asked if she could help me out. The pool we practice in is a 25 meter pool. I could make it down one length and then I was heaving and gasping for air, wondering if she could see my heart beating through my chest.. She also told me I needed to work on my legs, hips, arms, breathing, head, head rotation, keep my hands cupped...you get the picture. I had a problem on my hands. I have to tell you. I am way past 40 and when I have to think of six different things at once while under water, it is just plain hard. PLUS wondering if I'm going to run out of air. Not so good. So, I geared up and bought myself a pair of goggles and a swim cap. (I seriously remember my cap from when I was a kid. It looked something like this. It was thick and it smelled so rubbery.
I'm happy to report that my cap now is NOT like this, but I do fear I will loose my forehead in the process of putting it on.
Then I bought the suit.
A "swimming" suit. For swimming.
Let's just say I'm not one of those long, lithe swimmers on the High School Team. I found one online, purchased it and promptly sent it back. Huh uh. No way. Not me.
Then I went to Sports Chalet and sweated my way through trying to find the right size, which I truly believe does not exist, but I somewhat found one, purchased it and threw myself back into the pool. You know the saying, "The clothes make the woman"? I think maybe the "swimsuit does not make the swimmer."
Let's also notice that this model is about 20 years old. Maybe. It's for certain she hasn't had children yet, nor does she suffer from mid-life "WHERE did THIS come from" while turning around to look in the mirror. Even though I thought for sure I would automatically look like this when I put it on. It didn't happen. Huh. Who knew? At least I get a good workout just putting it on.
Anywho, I have been working on my swimming and have progressed to a modest 28-33 laps. Without heaving and thinking I am going into cardiac arrest!!!!!!! Each week my coach and I would go over and over what she said, and then I would get in the pool by myself later to practice and forget everything she taught me. Then we would have a lesson and over and over we would go, until one day...one truly amazing, holy day, I GOT IT. Yup. I still have to go through everything in my head each and every time I practice, but it's pretty much there!
Now, the biking is not so hard for me. I do not have a racing bike, but It's not a beach cruiser either. It's kinda like this:
The seat is thicker and the tires aren't those skinny deals that are on the racing bikes.
I can cruise around pretty well.
The running, however is a challenge. My legs truly do not want to comply, so I run as far as I can and then walk a bit, then run some more. I can almost do the whole length on the treadmill, but when I get out in the open, my body says, "WHOAH. You are so kidding, right??" So, I just do the best I can.
Doug and I took a trip to practice in the bay last week, so in my next story telling, I will give you the 411 on what it's like to put on a wet suit for the first time........
Have a good day!!