Monday, November 5, 2012

Lap Swimming

In this ongoing quest to lose weight and keep it off I'm always coming up with great ideas to stay in shape... I just can't say I always follow through with them.  The only consistent fitness tool I use is my elliptical machine, other than that fads come and go.  Fads like, belly dancing & Zumba dvd's.  A friend and I used to regularly attend water aerobics, but we really slacked off the past year, something was always coming up and we just couldn't get our schedules aligned.  My friend was into swimming as a form of exercise way before I was, for me swimming was a fun activity to do with my kid.  As I mentioned we used to put ourselves through a grueling 30 minute water aerobic class (you might be chuckling as you imagine a pool full of senior citizens with dumbbells swaying back and forth, this class wasn't like that).  Once we were in the rhythm of attending class, we started adding laps to the routine.  So before or after class we'd swim the pool a few times.  Now a year or so down the road it crossed my mind again, I really should get back in the pool and I don't mean just for my toddlers swimming class.  I don't always have access to the car and the pool isn't close, but I do have a bike I'm willing to ride now.  (Our old bike wasn't meant for people who lack coordination.)  Taking things one step at a time, I decided just to give it a shot, no reason to get over enthusiastic if it doesn't suit me.  So today while my toddler was at preschool I headed to the pool (admittedly with a car).  I checked the schedule and options at both local pools and realized that only the 50 meter pool was open at the Tongelreep, despite my lack of understanding meters as I should, I knew that would be too much for me.  The Ottenbad didn't have their 25 meter pool open but their recreation pool was open for swimming laps, the same pool I used to take water aerobics in.  I'm not the bravest person in the world, and this was a big adventure to take on my own.  (I know, I know, I can move countries, but I'm nervous about swimming laps alone, silly, huh!)  Something I remembered about swimming laps was at the time it felt great and the next day my entire body ached.  So I set a small goal for myself, 15 minutes or 10 laps.  Surprisingly it wasn't my muscles that let me down, it was my breathing.  I was out of breath before I knew it.  This time I was mixed in with all the senior citizens (hooray for them, no need to stop exercising because you're over 60 or 70 yrs old) and they were putting me to shame.  No we weren't using the same stroke or speed, but they were consistent and not heaving for a breath on the side of the pool.  Maybe the muscle shock will come later today or tomorrow, but as of now I need to study up on breathing techniques if I plan on keeping this up.  I'm keeping my goals small, I plan to swim laps at least once every two weeks.  (I said small, and I meant it.)  We'll see where it goes from there.  With the winter nearing and not having my own car I can't exactly imagine myself biking through snow or -7C weather to get to the pool, but who knows.  All I know is I tried something different, I survived without utter embarrassment, and I fit in half a workout today (that means I only have to do 15 minutes on the elliptical machine in my cold shed!) 


  1. Good for you, that is great that you went and did that on your own. I'm with you on the braveness thing. I seriously don't get how I can be brave enough to move across the world; but when it comes to trying out a new route for running or something? Yeah, right. Not happening-at least not very much!

    1. The trials and tribulations of expats, ha-ha! :) Danica