Posts Tagged ‘ swimming ’

Jumping Right In Part II

Once I’d reached the pool, I walked over, towel and goggles in hand, probably looking every bit as lost as I felt, to tell the lifeguard, a college-age looking guy, that it was my first time swimming laps and could he tell me how it worked and if there was any helpful info I should know. He was very helpful and it worked out well because a father and son were swimming next to each other and offered to join up in a lane together so I could have a lane to myself. They probably just didn’t want me to kick them in the head, but it worked for me!

I successfully swam from one end to the other, but as I looked around I noticed that the experienced swimmers were using a totally different form from the one I used (ie. no form at all). Wanting to at least try to swim a lap the “correct way” I plowed back toward the other end. Head down, arms flailing, turning every so often to breathe while trying not to suck in water. I managed to reach the end, more exhausted from my feeble attempts, and stood to rest a minute. I blinked. Hmmm…something seemed off. I blinked again. Everything looked kind of fuzzy. It took me a minute to realize that one of my contacts had floated out of my eye during my lap!

The lifeguard saw me standing there, probably looking like a confused drowned rat, and walked over. He asked nicely if I wanted a pair of goggles to wear. I blinked up at him and held up my pair of goggles. “I couldn’t get these to fit,” I said. He took them and adjusted them perfectly. He also gave me a tiny yellow kickboard and explained an easier way to swim laps correctly. I thanked him and began to swim again.

My efforts went, well, swimmingly, after that. I managed to complete 26 laps, which I was very proud of. I’m alreay looking forward to my next swimming endeavor! 🙂

Jumping Right In Part I

It’s amazing how time just slips away and before you know it three weeks have passed since my last blog post. Yikes!

In my last post I mentioned trying to pick up swimming to help facilitate the healing of my hip flexor injury. So this past Sunday I decided I would head over to my gym and try swimming some laps. The problem is I’ve never actually swam (swimmed? swumded?) laps before. I knew I could get from one end to the other without drowning – hopefully – but I knew it wouldn’t be pretty.

After throwing on my bathing suit, one I felt fairly confident wouldn’t slide, droop, or otherwise cause me embarassment while I was swimming, I packed a gym bag complete with goggles, towel and a change of clothes. I arrived at the gym eager, and slightly nervous, about swimming. How would I find the pool? How many laps would I be able to swim without inhaling water? Would I have to share a lane with some stellar swimmer who would, quite literally, blow me out of the water?

I told the woman at the front desk that I was looking to swim some laps, but hadn’t done this before and wasn’t sure what the protocol was. She pointed me in the direction of the locker rooms and said I could ask the lifeguard on duty how the “lane etiquette” worked. Who knew there was lane etiquette??

After finding the locker room and putting my stuff away. I somehow managed to find the entrance to the pool, a feat that seems like it should have been simple yet realized it wasn’t after winding my way through the locker room several minutes and having to double back more than once. Finally I reached the pool.

To be continued…

Just Keep Swimming

train-for-swim  I recently talked with someone at my local running store about my hip flexor injury, lamenting the fact that I haven’t been able to run without exacerbating it. She gave me the contact info of a local sports physical therapist that she said was excellent and went on to say that she tore her hip flexor so she knows what I’m going through. It was great to talk with someone who actually went through what I’m going through now. She recommended swimming, saying that it not only kept her from going crazy while she couldn’t run, but that it kept her in good cardio shape and brought her back to running in three months.

While three months seems like a long time, my goal is to be a life-long runner so I want to recovery the right way and if that means taking more time to strengthen my muscles and prevent future injuries then so be it. The woman went on to say that her therapist recommended one-leg bridges (a favorite pilates move of mine actually). She said to do three sets with ten leg-lifts on each side every day. A pain in the butt (ha!), but strengthening the glutes, strengthens the hips, both of which are common weak areas for women so it’s good to focus on those muscles anyway.

I’ve been in the gym a lot, doing pilates and lifting weights, working on my core and legs especially. My body has definitely grown tighter and stronger, although I haven’t seen much, if any, improvement in my hip flexor. So my new goal is to contact a sports therapist and jump in the pool as much as I can. I’m not going to give up. I will run again. Like Dory says – Just keep swimming! 🙂

Happy running!

Beating the Running Blues

sadrunnerEvery so often an injury will derail me from my running goals. Because running has become so much of my identity I rely heavily on being able to run to find peace of mind emotionally, physically and mentally. When I can’t run it really affects me on my many levels. Lately I’ve been faced with this challenge and have been forced, or, thinking positively, given the opportunity, to find ways to cope with not being able to run.

So instead of getting depressed and mopey, here, after much self-reflection, are:

Runner Sami’s Tips for Beating the Running Blues

1. Use the time off to become a stronger runner – Find cross-training activities that won’t exacerbate your injury. Biking, swimming, pilates, yoga, and strength training are all great ways to build up muscles that will help keep you injury-free in the future.

2. Invest in other areas of your life – Because running is my positive outlet, it’s important to reroute those energies into other outlets while running is on the back burner. Find ways to invest your time that make you happy. Writing, catching up with friends, spending time with my family, or planning a trip are some things I have found help rejuvenate me when I’m not able to run.

3. Read about running – For some people this might be too painful, but I’ve found that reading about running helps me feel like I’m still involved in becoming a better runner. Books or articles about running help me focus on positive ways to help my recovery. There are always ways I can better myself as a runner and it’s fun to read about interesting races I can sign up for once I’m at full running capacity again!

4. Be an active participant in your recovery – You’re not alone. There are a lot of resources online through blogs, social media sites like dailymile.com, or websites like runnersworld.com for runners looking for support or providing helpful tips and strategies for those coming back from injuries. Finding answers and lending support to others are great ways to aid in recovery.

5. Eat healthy, be happy – When I can’t run my mind automatically starts to dwell on all those extra pounds that are going to fly onto my body. Even if this is not realistic, eating healthy helps me keep a happy frame of mind until I can go back to burning the calories I’m used to burning. And eating healthy is always a great habit for helping me become a stronger runner.

Happy running! 😀

Memorial Day Fun

  My weekend was filled with sun, family, bbqs, and swimming. And lots and lots of reading. I checked out a couple of Kathy Reichs’ forensic mysteries just so I could sit on the porch and read something I knew I would love.

The pools in my complex opened this weekend so a lot of the weekend was spent relaxing poolside. The water was still freezing but very refreshing after basking in the sun. Got a little burnt because I forgot to bring sunscreen to the pool, but fortunately I’ve been blessed with a complexion that will allow it to fade into a healthy glow. 😀

I love grilling in the summer. Everything just seems to taste better. I’ve been loving all the fresh fruits and veggies that are starting to come into season and can’t wait for corn on the cob on the grill! Yumumum!

It was a wonderful, relaxing weekend. Hope you had a great Memorial Day weekend too however you chose to celebrate it.