I tell them I might do or I’m thinking about doing a sprint marathon. Some are impressed… some are surprised… some jump right to “you’re not going to swim in the dirty Potomac?” But, I’m always careful to say might or maybe… never “I am”. The waffling is primarily for me, because I don’t want to start something unless I plan on finishing.
So far I signed up for the New Triathlete Program (NPT), because I didn’t want to miss the deadline just in case I decide to do the sprint triathlon. I signed up for the actual triathlon, because I didn’t want to miss the deadline just in case I actually decided to do the triathlon. I signed up for and have taken five weeks of swim lessons just in case I actually decided to do the triathlon.
The deal I’ve made with myself is that I will complete the swim lessons in the hopes of becoming a swimmer. (Note that being able to swim and being a swimmer are two totally different things.) Then and only then will I commit to doing the sprint triathlon… probably, maybe.
After three weeks of swim lessons I was feeling cocky and then I joined a group lesson for people training for triathlons, iron man events, and long distance swim events, which was a totally humbling experience that smashed my cockiness into the ground. These people are serious with a capital S. Some might say they are seriously wacky and should be committed. Apparently they do this stuff for fun. They love swimming miles of lonely, monotonous laps in the pool three, four or five days a week so they can swim miles in choppy, open water roiling by all the other folks swimming with them.
Some things I’ve learned so far 1- flippers are training wheels for swimmers; 2- I can drown in water that is over my head (but I was too stubborn/determined to call for help); 3) I can open my eyes under water because I’m wearing goggles; 4) since I can open my eyes under water, I should look where I’m going. So, the adventure continues… just in case.