Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's Day Workout

Wanting to get off on the good foot, I headed to the YMCA's New Year open house. The Y had quite the sampler which included yoga and boot camp. I decided to go to rec swim which was well-populated. There was one child that the lifeguard had to continuously remind about pool protocol while the parents kept silent. I mean, really, you could hear crickets chirping.

At first, I practiced the front crawl and, because the wild child was all over the place, I finally went to the deep end at the suggestion of Shannon even though my treading skills are iffy. Shannon, the lifeguard on duty for the open house, also serves as aquatics director for the Carondelet Y and was one of two teachers for my third swimming class. I figured that if Shannon had confidence that I could hang out in the deep end, I'd give it a try. Besides, it wasn't any skin off my nose if she had to jump in and save me with her little red board.

One of the best classes that I ever had was with Shannon. It was the day before Thanksgiving and I was the only one who showed up. I told Shannon that I was having trouble with the back crawl and she observed and gave suggestions. The third time that I took off was the charm. I felt like I had motors attached to my feet; it was such an exhilarating moment. I even stopped a bit short before I made it to the end of the pool and Shannon repeated stay calm, which I managed to do since she was practically cooing. Shannon also showed me how to flip over in case I got tired when doing the front crawl.

Shannon also called me out during one class which consisted of four swimmers at different levels. There were two advanced swimmers, I was in the middle and there was one woman terrified of the water. While Shannon worked with the T.O.W., I practiced the back crawl but would stop mid-pool. Shannon looked over her shoulder and said is there a reason that you're stopping? And since I did not have a good enough reason, I kept on moving.

While I was staring at the ceiling and practicing my back crawl during open house, I decided not to sign up for the next swimming class. I feel confident about the back crawl, sidestroke and breaststroke; it's the front crawl that continues to vex me. I have a feeling, though, that the breathing element of the front crawl is much like learning how to drive a stick shift; you have to get the feel of it for yourself.

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