Saturday, April 11, 2009

P90X Round 2 Day 83: Kenpo 500 Meter Swim

Have you ever been to Sea World and laughed at the big fat Walrus that is just splashing about in the water? They look all uncoordinated and just downright goofy! Well, that is pretty much how I felt that I looked on my first day of trying to swim!

No, I am not exaggerating either. It was bad. I realized that I have no idea how to freestyle. No idea how to breathe, no idea how to kick, and that it is not a good idea to forget your goggles in a saltwater pool - my eyes are still burning!

Okay now that I got the gripping out of my system .... swimming was actually fun. In a demented, painful sort of way! That being said - Everything I typed above is 100% true. I have no idea what the heck I am doing. But just like with P90X I just pushed play, albeit a very slow play!

I got to the pool this morning and I pretty much had the entire place to myself! Except for the one other woman there that glided effortlessly through the water like a freaking dolphin - I didn't like her very much! I went up and back 8 times in the roped off 25 meter lane and it was at the beginning of lap 9 that I realized my heart was about to beat out of my chest. I did the full 20 laps/500 meters but had to take a bunch of breaks and even doggy paddle at times. This is really hard! And it is a completely different type of cardio from biking, running, plyo, or intervals. I just couldn't figure out how to breath and stroke and kick all at the same time?

The hard part for me to deal with is that I am an athlete and have always caught on to new sports rather quickly. Well, that is not the case today. The freestyle swim stroke won today but I am going to keep coming back until I conquer this thing. Like some have said in my comments section - lessons are needed! Whether that is at the pool with an instructor or viewing every instructional video available on YouTube, I will learn how to do this!

Tomorrow I am going to run 5K (even though it is a scheduled rest day) and keep my heart rate in the aerobic zone between 147-153 BPM. My wife is making me go to a Brunch tomorrow. I am not a big fan of Brunch - for some reason all the women in my life are fans of Brunch? Can't really figure out why? I really hope they have turkey sausage or at the least wheat toast.

Thanks for Reading,



  1. I posted before... Get someone to work with you on proper swimming technique. I was a swimmer through high school. Trust me... If you don't learn the basics, you won't make it. It isn't hard to learn the basics. Get them down, and you will be able to "bring it!"

    good luck

  2. I enjoyed your candid post today. I am sure that once you get "basics" of the stroke you will be well on the way.

    It ws pretty good, though, that despite the struggle, you still did your 500 meters.

    On your 5k tomorrow, really try to stay within your aerobic zone. Now that I am doing that instead of going purely for time, my training is getting better. I did 5 miles yesterday by trying to stay in my aerobic zone.

  3. I saw that pic and I thought you were going to do something around the Beatles "I am the Walrus."

    The bright side is that you didn't sink. You'll get the hang of it in no time. And kudo's for doing the 500 meters. I know you'll begin to get the hang of it and do those laps without stopping. It's all coordination and getting in sync.

    I had to swim 1-mile for my Water Safety Instructor (WSI)certification back in the 80's, and the two strokes I used the most were the crawl and the breast-stroke. The breast-stroke was the easiest and the one I used when I needed a break, and one that still moves you through the water. If you get a coach, have him/her work with you on those two strokes. You'll be gliding through the water like Michael Phelps in no time!

  4. Anony - I am planning on getting a lesson at the gym. As long as I learn what to focus on I will be fine.

    Boomer - I am staying within 147-155 BPM during my running sessions and I can already tell that is the way to go!

    Steve - When I posted that pic I had the Beatles in my head ... that is too funny!

  5. Swimming takes time. Once you get a feel for the water you will be fine.

    Here is a simple trick until you get your lesson. Keep your head up. Your eyes should be right at the water level. When you reach strech out your arm fully before you hit the water (eventually you will learn the "feel" and how to enter properly). This will make sure you have a full extension. Kicking is easy. Keep your legs as straight as you can and point your toes. Kicking is not important since you will be doing more long distances and need to save your legs. For now it is just to keep your body on top of the water so you are not dragging.
    Good Luck.

  6. Thanks Andrew ... i am going to go swim again tomorrow and I will try and incorporate your tips!