Last night I broke down and went to Master’s Swim.
"Forgive me Coach... It has been 24 years since my last group swim practice..."
Though I've been toying with the idea for a long time, I never have had the guts to go. I just always assumed I didn't belong there. Masters Swim is for epic swimmers like my Qualifying Aunt, or Ranked Mother. or my friend Alex who breaks NC Records, right?
I'm not that.
I always feel like a poser at the pool.
I'm a good swimmer, but I don't have it.
There is no magic when I slide into the pool, pinned between lane lines, sloshing through my strokes as the other swimmers glide effortlessly through the water.
Besides, swimming is a solitary sport. Why bother going to a class where you are likely going to be exposed as a not awesome swimmer poser?
Holy Freaking Fun, Batman!
Yes. It was Fun. And freakisly hard.
Y Coach - "Ok, swim 300m warm up, then 4 X 100 swim/FTD/swim/Kick, 400 descending, 4x 50 descending, then 10 X 100 descending with 4 @ 2:05, 3 @ 2:00, 2 @ 1:55, and 1 @ 1:50... Go."
Me - empty stare.
Y Coach - "Go ahead."
Me - "Can you repeat that, in english please? This is only my first day."
Y Coach - "What!?" He shook his head in disbelief.
I nodded and said, "First day. For real. Please explain."
Y Coach - "You don't swim like it's your first day.... " But he did explain what it all meant.
I wasn't terrible.
But I wasn’t awesome, even in my Awesome-girl swim wear.
Halfway through Masters Swim I was sucking wind (or water, but air is better, FYI. I would know, I've checked both). At a lot of points I struggled, trying to keep up with the people in my lane. They have a lot of endurance. I have a little speed on them, with no endurance what so ever. It's not an ideal combination.
It’s an interesting feeling, swimming in a circle pattern with a group. I always feel hunted in the water until I start to see my lane mates ahead of me. Then, I become the hunter.
And Y Coach said to me at the end of the night, in a where in the heckfireandshoot did you come from kind of way, "So... You've been swimming alone? All this time?"
He smiled, and I recognized a kindred spirit. "If you come back, you will get faster... So.... see you next week."
It was not a question.
And he might just see me next week.
After all... if we know one thing about me, it's that I am addicted to speed.