Monthly Archives: October 2012
Old joke expressing a timeless lesson. Friday is the only day I can get to the pool with my team members. They have stepped up their program and I felt kind of lost today. For a minute I let frustration take over. I was thinking that I won’t be able to catch up and will always be lagging behind in my skills and stamina. Well it is what it is. I thought of the elephant joke and realized that like the elephant my swimming skills will improve one bite at a time. So what can I do on the days that I come to the pool by myself? I can do laps. Several things that I want to do will involve me being able to swim several hundred yards without stopping. So if I do nothing else, I can improve my endurance.
I can work with that. Starting Tuesday I need to swim 300 yds (12 laps) without stopping. Not committing to a particular stroke, just the distance. I’ll keep your informed.
I talk to my students often about the consumerism that has overtaken the American psyche. We are crazy about the next best thing, IPhone 6, Kindle 3, 3D TV etc. We can’t wait for it. I just saw a commercial for a shampoo infused with the “berry” that was going to help us lose weight last year! For goodness sake is there anything it can’t do? I was swept up myself and couldn’t wait for several things that I knew I couldn’t live without. Well at some point I realized that I could live without them and the planet would continue to spin. I still like shiny new stuff but I don’t have to run out get it right away. There are so many things more important than stuff. My grandkids for instance. A good wood fire in our family room when it’s chilly out. A day when I don’t have to do anything other than what I decide to do.
You can add to the list I’m sure. Slow down and enjoy what you have.
So yesterday we attended a swim meet traveling about an hour from our pool to theirs. The meet was billed as a Masters mini-meet . For those who don’t know Masters swimming is for anyone over 18. So here’s what I came away with. There were swim meet newbies and experienced swimmers mixed in. I went with the intention of getting an idea about good times for any given event. I came away with something else. I saw swimmers who were slower than I am and I saw them swim with people who were really fast but what I didn’t see was anybody quit. There were races where everyone was finished and out of the pool before the last person finished. They never stopped until they finished no matter what.
I came away with a sense of the possibilities. I will compete in the spring or summer. What’s the worst that can happen? I come in last. So what. No guts, no glory!
Those are not Bible verses. They are my swim times this morning. So this was the first time Coach Corey timed me. It was so sad. Anyway here is a beginning point. 38 seconds freestyle, 49 seconds back, 1:02 breast. I refuse to attempt the fly. Did I mention that these sad times were for 25 yds? Well now I know what I have to do and every day that I am in the pool I will do my best to improve these times. Maybe I won’t be competitive in the near future but I will get there. Swimming is in my blood now.
I belong to a facebook page started by my Weight Watchers group. Every time I go there I am impressed by the things that the group does to carry out important goals. Several of the ladies walk in the park every morning at 5:00am and of course now it’s dark when they walk. They bring flashlights and walk past people with the little miner type lights on their hats running/walking in the opposite direction! Our leader Ruby posts bits of inspiration every day. So I just have to ignore the voice in my head that sometimes causes me to want to stop.
It’s so easy to come up with excuses to not do what we need to. I often try using my age. After all I’m 61 I can’t ….. To quote Archie Bunker “Crapola”. I am still capable of a lot and I bet you are too. Don’t let the excuses define you. Do the very best you can every day. You’ll be surprised at how much you can really get done.
No matter what’s going on when I get to the pool it begins to fade. Today the coach was out but five members of the team were there. We know the drill literally. So we practiced kicks, arms, whole strokes. I see progress. Still not where the rest of the team is but I no longer doubt that I will get there. We registered our Masters team and want to attend a swim meet next week just to see what it’s like. Wow! Who knows where this will lead. LoL!
So today as I was driving to meet my girlfriend Deborah I passed a small boutique type of store with several mannequins wearing pink and orange wigs. I can’t tell you about the clothes but I remember the wigs. I thought as I went by there are perks to being sixty-one. I don’t have to decide whether to succumb to the latest fashion and consider wearing a pink or orange or purple wig. Make-up doesn’t take me an hour any more. A little mascara, blush and lipstick and I’m good to go. I mean who am I kidding. I think I look good for 61 but that doesn’t mean that I look 4o or 50 for sure. I’m good with what I see. Herringbone stockings are not for my ample thighs thank goodness because they are not pretty wrapping around the legs of some of the healthy young women I see with them on. No muffin top causing jeans cause mine come to my waist. Huh! I am so over the everyday pressures of fashion. I can dress nicely without frightening myself when I look in the mirror. Yes, thanks for mentioning it I do have a slight limp. Guess what I limped my 61-year-old self through the park for 4.24 miles this morning how about you?
So I had a very challenging week including the cold that is still hanging on. I really wrestled with whether or not to go to the pool today but I missed the entire week so I went. The crew among other things was practicing their dives off of the blocks. Oh please! I can’t even think about that. But okay we all went to the diving area and I agreed to go off the edge of the pool. Well my feet were glued to the pool deck. I began to get light-headed and there may have been a bit of hyperventilation. Finally the coach said okay we go on three. I went. It wasn’t pretty but I did it. Then again and then again. Still needs lots of work but I’ll keep trying.
Failure isn’t an option!