My first swim event taught me plenty.  It was the La Jolla Pier to Cove Swim, 1.5 ocean miles, mostly against the current and with seagrass/kelp as the biggest obstacle.  My three most important learnings were:  1) Practice the Start.  The day before the swim I donned my shorty and neoprene cap (I wore a full wetsuit, booties, and the neoprene cap in the event) to get a feel for the water temperature.  What I should have done . . . was swim the start.  The start is directly into the current just north of the Scripps Pier.  The difficultly to propel myself passed the pilings surprised me.  Which brings me to the second learning:  2) Self-Doubt is the challenge. Confident I could swim 1.5 ocean miles,I was concerned about the 90 minute time limit.  I was ready to give up at the start when it seemed like forever before I passed  the pier but the entire time I believed I was dead last, way behind anyone else.  I didn’t see any swim caps behind me and the support crew seemed so far ahead. My mind drove me nuts. I fluctuated between concentrating on my form and thinking about personal things.  Now I wish I kept my focus on my stroke and shed all the self-doubt.  I wasn’t last, and about 70% of those with later times were younger than me!  So not bad for a first ever event!  Oh, and my third learning:  3) Everything is more fun with friends!  A non-swimmer friend carried my bag. watched out for me, and took photos.  A swimmer friend encouraged me at the start! It was uplifting to see them both at the finish!


before the swim

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