Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Maybe swimming isn't for me

I tried something different this morning. I did my normal cardio workout (intervals), today it was the elliptical for thirty five minutes, then a few lower body weights for about twenty minutes, then swimming again, for only twenty minutes.

The reason for only twenty minutes of swimming:  I almost drowned in five foot of water. I'm serious.

While I was in the middle of my fifth lap of doing the backstroke, I somehow flung a bunch of water up my nose as I was inhaling. I panicked, started coughing, choking, and gasping for air. I tried to stand up but couldn't touch the bottom of the pool. My mind couldn't register this because I was sure the pool was four foot, even in the deepest area. I'm 5' 6", I should have been able to stand up and touch bottom.

There were only two other people in the pool with me, swimming the lanes on each side of me. As I coughed and choked, they kept swimming. I grabbed onto the plastic rope that separates the lanes and gathered my composure. I was mainly embarrassed, and a little bit afraid. Then I saw the sign on the edge of the pool next to me. It said "5 Ft.". Okay. I can touch the bottom. I stood up, on my toes, with my head tilted back and quietly walked a few feet until I was in the four foot area. I swam a few more laps but I'd lost my momentum.

After the pool I went into the dry sauna for six minutes (thermometer said it was 205F degrees...I think it must have been broken). Then I went into the steam room for six minutes.

All day I was absolutely physically exhausted. It wasn't a hard workout so I'm not sure why I was (and still am) so wiped out.

Someone recently told something that's making me rethink this whole swimming thing. They said recent research has shown older people are happier people. The reason is because older people have figured out what they like to do and what they don't like. Now that they're older they focus on just the stuff they like, and forget the stuff they don't like.

I've never liked swimming. I don't like water in my face in up my nose, or the taste of chlorine. I don't like wearing a swimsuit. I don't like the fear I get that I could drown in five feet of water. I don't like that I can't wear my heart rate monitor or my iPod. I don't like the silence. I don't like other people in the water with me. I don't like that it's so hard for me and that it hurts. I don't like it that I don't like. Everyone loves swimming, right?

What do you think? Should I just forget about the swimming? Maybe I should try an aerobics class or something else? My gym has spinning classes, but only at noon, so that's not an option. In my twenties aerobics was all the rage, high impact aerobics. Remember "no pain, no gain"? I must have heard that a hundred times in all those stupid step aerobic classes I took in the 80's.

I really need to do something different. The gym with it's daily grind is losing it's charm. I go, but I don't go enthusiastically. At least not lately. Maybe when and if it ever stops raining around here in this hell hole called the Pacific Northwest, I can get back to riding my bike. I just need something new, but maybe not swimming.


✯FiTCETERA✯ said...

No, everyone does not like swimming. I don't particularly care for it. I've never been that good at it and I don't like water up my nose either. I like cycling and walking and when I get around to it, I like weights.
A guy at work started doing yoga and lost about 30 lbs ... well he quit drinking beer too. :D but he swears by it and says I should give it a try.

I'm a loner so I don't like team things but I work with people who join leagues for all kinds of activiites. Volleyball, baseball etc.
Or dance classes.
I was talking with someone about naturally thin people and I told him my thin friend(s) don't do any formal working out at all ... they just don't stop moving throughout the day. They're always doing something around the house or outside. They don't sit for too long so their bodies are always burning calories.
The best form of exercise I think, is definitely something that doesn't make you feel like you have to do it. Like when we were kids. We never stopped playing for long. We had FUN.
Try and find something that makes you feel like you're having fun.
Paintball maybe??? :D

lindalou said...

I feel you on the gym burnout...ugh....I wish my gym would get a rowing machine...but they won't.

Anyway I just bought a bike and on a bike, you know, you can wear your heeartrate monitor, your ipod and feel the wind in your hair, and look around...and it's a nice change-up.

andrea. said...

Well, while I think that MOST people would say they "love swimming", what MOST people mean when they say that is that they love being in a pool at a resort in Mexico. Or they love jumping in the lake at the cottage. Lane swimming at a public pool SUCKS. So I definitely would not feel bad about not liking it. :)

Find something you love and do that. Hiking, biking, walking, yoga, whatever. If it's not swimming, no big deal.

Carrieheff said...

AMEN! I do not like swimming, don't do it well and have no desire to do it at all. I can save my life if I'm in a boat that tips over and that's about it. You have been saying for a while you want to "try new things." Well, you tried swimming, don't particularly like it so move on and find something you do like.
I can tell you that if you force yourself to swim, you won't enjoy the work out at all and will start making excuses to skip it which is really counter productive. Try a class or a DVD at home or something else. You don't have to like every form of exercise, Find what you like and then you will *want* to do it and not feel like you "have to" do it.
I give you huge props for trying it!

Anonymous said...

Bummer on the swimming ordeal.

M Pax said...

I frostbit my feet skiing and get the worst leg cramps whenever my feet get cold and wet, so I don't enjoy swimming so much any more.

Keep searching. Find something you like that gets you moving and the blood flowing.

It's been rainy here on hte dry side, too.

midlife_swimmer said...

Why not try aquatic exercise where you do not get you head in the water or.... I would highly advise swim lessons. Learning to blow bubbles properly makes that water up the nose thing go away. By the way Loretta sent me over here to take a look. :)

I am unsure of what sports you do like but I often run into runners who did not like it much at first. Swimming is an ALL body workout so that is why you are probably tired. swimming freestyle burns over 700 calories an hour.

OH and I lap swim and I LOVE SWIMMING. At 240 lbs after loosing close to 140 lbs I still kick butt in the pool and beat out triathlete men younger and in better shape because I know stroke technique.

Swim lessons are like personal training but cheaper and in the water.

Anonymous said...

Wow...I'm so glad you are okay...worse has happened in more shallow water.

I don't like swimming...I don't mind splashing around a bit in a pool.

Don't feel bad if you drop it...don't do it, if you don't really enjoy it...there are many other options out there.

Miz said...

you know what i think.

you will find your thing :)

hula hooping?

people love the hooping dvds.

big_mummy said...

I love to swim until something shit happens, like I swallow water and inhale down the wrong hole, or people get in my way... or i have to exit via steps instead of walking out lol