So I’ve been back in the swimming life for a few months now and by that I don’t mean the occassional dip in the nearest hot-tub or just splashing about like a wee baby!
I mean going to the swimming pool and for an hour doing as many laps as your body can endure. Hell, it’s the only time I can even remember when in s strange twist, the longer I swim, the more I am actually tiring but somehow instead I feel more energized and except for a time limit I need to stick to, I would just keep going till I couldn’t anymore.
And I LOVE IT! I was always a fan of water: showers, tubs, pools, streams, oceans… I am unabashedly a water person. Even though I don’t believe in astrology, it amused me that even my Chinese astrology element is water. One of the points below actually touches on certain things that to someone like me would even go so far as to say it’s a uniquely spiritual experience to be in that zone – many athletes feel this way about their sport but to me there is something unique about the water and what it is to just lose yourself in it.
In yet another moment of amusing serendipity, I came across this list on Thought Catalog and it gave me enough chuckles that I wanted to share it – but rather than just sharing a list, I figured I’d add in my little tidbits to them based on my own experience. So read on if like to swim and see how many you can check off your list:
1. There are always at least two things hanging up to dry somewhere in your house/apartment, and they are a swimsuit and a towel.
[Yup, and they bloody reek of chlorine ALL the time, as does my swim-bag. Winter is the time it really kills me though!]
2. People frequently ask if you are tired because it looks like you have bags under your eyes. Those are just goggle marks.
[Thankfully not so far, but I can see it happen during weeks where I’ve overdone it a wee bit]
3. Literally every muscle in your body is used during your workout and it. feels. amazing.
[Like nothing else on the whole bloody planet!]
4. When you’re underwater, the rest of the world gets blocked out. There’s only you, the movement of your body, and the freedom to let your mind wander.
[Oh yeah! Once again: nothing else on the whole bloody planet! There is no world, just me.]
5. … Despite the feeling of Zen you get from #4, on occasion you wish there were something to occupy your brain with as you swim. (Underwater iPod, anyone?)
[Ain’t that the truth! BUT, technology to the rescue again, I now await just such a gadget and luck-willing, it will not electrocute me mid-length]
6. But being truly alone with your thoughts can give you the opportunity to solve all of your problems, plan our your day down to the minute, discover the cure for cancer, etc.
[Possibly, for me though, most of the time it’s like… it’s like dreaming… little conscious thought, my mind is free to do and wander as it will and if it solves problems along the way, good for it!]
7. You understand that swimming a mile is very, very different from running one.
[Anyone who doubts that, try them both and tell me how you feel at the end. I’ll take swimming any damned day!]
8. The scent of chlorine never completely leaves your skin.
[Yeah, even after a small gap, it lingers… So far I’m not willing to test how long it takes for it to totally fade. I like my swim.]
9. You have permanent tan lines, but they’re not the cool kind that you get from going on vacation.
[This, sadly, no. Indoor pools make this a hard one to have and really original list-maker, how many people have outdoor pools to use at most gym/sports club-like places? Most I know are indoors.]
[Goggles? Yes. Shorts? Fuck. No.]
11. Deciding to work out when you have a cold is worth at least five minutes of serious thought.
[Hmm… nope, three is usually the best I can manage.]
12. Abdominal muscles/strength are a point of pride.
[I don’t gloat about it, still got a ways to go before a sexy gut exists but yeah, you definitely feel the difference and revel in it!]
13. There is one brand/style of goggles that you swear were made to fit your face perfectly.
14. Trying to get into your swimsuit when it’s still damp can almost take away your desire to work out. (Almost.)
15. “Fast,” “medium,” and “slow,” can be arbitrary labels for the lanes. When the pool is crowded one should try to follow these signs, but if it’s not – why waste an empty lane?
[Waste not, want not. With the chaotics of most others in the pool, I find a lane and just ignore the world unless they get in my way. Then I might dunk them.]
16. You learned, the hard way, that you should never leave your swim cap somewhere that will heat up for an extended period of time.
[Muaahahah! Short hair, no swim cap! Though I’ve considered it, I like not having my head squeejeed in latex.]
17. … Because you actually use a swim cap.
18. There’s a fine, fine line between leaky goggles and a massive headache.
[On this we agree. I’ll often be inclined to take the headache.]
19. Instead of 1, 2, 3, it’s 25, 50, 75…
[Yeah, I got no idea what this means… If you’re referring to how many lenghs/laps you do, then yup, if not then you’ve lost me here buddy!]
20. Your cardio is also your strength training.
[It’s perfect! I do some free dumb-bells after, but that’s usually more a calorie burning exercise than to build muscle. For that the swimming is more than enough.]
21. “Going to the pool” or “going for a swim” means something different to you than it does to most people.
[Oh that it definitely does!]
22. It’s only cold when you first jump in.
23. Your hair stylist has uttered the phrase “Your hair is beautiful but it’s so damaged by all that chlorine.”
[I have a barber, not a stylist, but yeah, even he’s told me that. Hey, what can I say? I have naturally sexy hair!]
24. Working out feels better when you can’t tell that you’re sweating.
[Despite what a lot of people told me growing up to the contrary, this point is undeniably true.]
25. You have an opinion on circle swim vs. splitting the lane.
[Not a hard and fast one at this juncture, but I lean…]
26. The line “Water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink” from The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner resonates with you on a spiritual level.
27. Baby powder exists so that the experience of pulling a silicone swim cap over your head doesn’t totally suck.
[Hah! No swim cap for me! …but this is good advice to bear in mind should that ever change…]
28. You have to bite your tongue when a non-swimmer thinks they’d be pretty fast in the pool because they work out or have a significant amount of muscle mass.
29. Sports-related injuries are an unfamiliar territory for you, because there is no stress placed on your bones or muscles during your workout.
[So far so good on that score!]
30. You’ve planned your workout around strange and specific hours because the pool you use is only open or available at certain times.
[This is true… my timings of choice are not exactly… choice. I just like the quietest time when it’s as close to “my pool” as I can make it.]
31. And a trip to the gym isn’t so simple, because all of the equipment, dressing, and undressing that you need to effectively complete your workout.
[Also true. But I like the simple ritual of getting into that zone.]
32. Swimming in a lane with a total stranger teaches you how to share…
[True. And if you’re in at a particularly crowded time, it’s amazing how cordial and accommodating you can learn to be to total strangers and have them be the same as you all navigate the traffic and chaos together.]
33. … but you still prefer having your own lane. It is a rare and exciting luxury.
[Those are the best day… sigh…]
34. There’s an art and etiquette to passing your lane partner, or being passed.
35. Passing or being passed also has the potential to make or break your mood during your workout.
[I suppose it could, but personally I don’t care so long as you let me just swim.]
36. You have regular lane partners or lane neighbors, but you may not necessarily know them by name. Still, you respect them and feel a connection based on the recognition of dedication.
[Yup. Several nameless buddies are to be found.]
37. Land workouts are great, but there is nothing quite like the way your body feels after a swim.