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Day 15 – It Finally Arrived

159 days until IRONMAN 70.3 Chattanooga

Remember last week when I was lamenting the fact that I didn’t have an accurate heart rate monitor and I didn’t know which one to get? I ended up deciding on the Wahoo TICKR X and … IT’S HERE!


The Wahoo TICKER X

Also, do you remember the days when you could buy a gadget or new tool or new something and it came with instructions? Me too. I sort of miss those days. The TICKR X came with one very small instruction sheet that has a couple of sentences in english and about eight pictograms that look vaguely like those you might see in an international airport.

Anyway, it arrived yesterday and I deciphered those hieroglyphs the best I could without the help of an anthropologist. After several attempts, I put it on last night just to see if it would work and check my heart rate: yes, it works. The real test was going to be my workout this morning: a swim trial to get my T-time. That’s a 1000 yard swim for time.


After a short warm up, I removed the heart rate monitor. If you’re not familiar with this kind of thing, the device is held to the chest with a strap and each time I pushed off the wall of the pool, the strap slid farther down toward my pupik (I dare you to look up that one). But that’s OK. Im still not sure how to use it properly which means I have to go to a website and read the instructions, all because the monitor didn’t come with proper instructions. Oh how I miss those days of 50 page instruction booklets that came with a TV.

Public Pools

One thing about swimming in a public pool is that you have to be courteous to the others around you. I guess you don’t have to be courteous, but you’ll quickly get what you deserve if you’re not considerate of others.

Let me say up front that I don’t mind sharing a swimming lane with another swimmer or even multiple other swimmers. In fact, when I have a lane to myself , I usually swim to one side incase the pool gets crowded and someone needs a half lane to swim. Usually if I see someone standing on the deck at the head of my lane, I stop and invite them in. And I certainly don’t mind if someone were to simply get in and use the other side of the lane without saying anything to me. So there you go: be considerate. When I started the 1000y trial, I had the lane to myself, but I swam to one side.

One thing I don’t want to do during the trial is stop swimming. The clock is ticking and I don’t want to pause my watch, but in hind sight, I guess I could have paused my watch now that I think about it.

Swimming With Others

I was more than half way through the trial when I noticed a group standing on the deck at the head of my lane. As I hit the wall for a turn, I glanced up at them, but they did not make eye contact with me so I thought they were just socializing. The next time I came back to that end of the pool, one of the women in the group looked at me and made a twirling motion with her finger which to me suggested that she wanted to circle swim.

Circle swimming is when you swim down one side of the lane and you swim back on the other side. That way you can accommodate more than two people in a lane: it’s like a train of swimmers following each other.

I assumed that she and others wanted to swim in the lane with me so I started circle swimming: going away on the right side and returning on the left side. She didn’t enter the water right away and the next time I returned to the head of the lane, she appeared to have a confused look on her face.

Eventually, she did get in somewhere around my 800 yard mark and I realized that she was the only one getting in the water. She probably expected to split the lane with me rather than circle swim. Too late. I was in a zone. Then I realized who she was: a masters swimmer that I’ve swum with who can out swim a shark. And she was behind me. Thankfully, I only had a couple more laps to go, otherwise she would have crawled all over me and then I would have really felt stupid.

The Moral Of The Story

There is no moral to this story. It’s just one of those things that happens in life. My 1000y time was 18:16 = 1:50/100y. Not too bad and plenty of room for improvement.

By the way: I’m getting closer to a season plan for 2020. I want to finish The Triathlete’s Training Bible first and then dig into the planning. Maybe tomorrow I talk about some of the really cool stuff in that book.

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