So, this morning was my first day at Masters Swimming. My tri coach, Andi, thought Masters may be good for me because I have been in sort of a swimming rut. Not that I’ve ever been an amazing swimmer or even close. I actually just started swimming (other than doing handstands and playing marco polo in the pool as a kid) in November 2010. I took some lessons then, but mostly I’ve just been swimming on my own. Slowly. Very slowly. When I started working with a tri coach in January, I got faster in the beginning, but since then have sort of plateaued and have been losing motivation.
I was very nervous about starting Masters this week. Not only because I was afraid of the 5:00 a.m. start (and 4:15 wake up time), but, of course, also because I didn’t want to be the worst in the group or totally make a fool of myself. There also aren’t any lifeguards on duty during Masters and that was definitely in the back of my mind (sort of kidding, but sort of not…).
I got there at 5:00 a.m. this morning and everyone was already in the pool. I found the coach and told him I needed the slow lane. He asked how slow and when I told him, he told me to leave. No, just kidding. He pointed me to a lane with three men in their 50s-60s, who thankfully took pity on my throughout the workout.
They don’t give you a lot of direction at Masters Swimming. The coach writes a workout on the board using weird acronyms and abbreviations that no normal person can comprehend, such as “IMO” and “c-up” and others that I don’t even remember. Half the time, I had no idea what I was supposed to be doing, but I just followed the guys in front of me and when I couldn’t tell what they were doing, I just did freestyle. I made it until 6:30 and wasn’t asked not to come back.
I just wanted to survive the first workout, which I did. Small victories! And, if nothing else, it was good practice for the crowded and chaotic start of a race. I’m sure I’ll get the hang of it eventually – like everything else. It’s just going to take some time.