Saturday, March 28, 2015

I Am Ironfish

The title comes from a website called Fitocracy.  You log in, log your workouts, get points and level up as you get more points. It rewards workouts more or less like a video game.  Yes, it's for nerds. Nerds can be childish and not want to do things if it's not a game.  Yes, I am a nerd.

The site was designed by people who heavily weight the reward system to weightlifters and runners.  That's okay.  Plenty of people don't think swimmers are really working out. *shrug*  Plenty of people are wrong, but that's nothing new :)

Today I earned the quest badge I am Ironfish.   To earn it you have to swim 2.4 miles -- the distance you swim in the Ironman triathlon.  I swam 4500 yards (~2.56 miles), but who's counting, right?

Oh yeah, me, I totally am counting. :)

The description goes like this:

Guppies need not apply. The Ironman triathlon swimming leg is a daunting 3.86 km (2.4 mi). Swimming this far without stopping takes years of training, so this distance is only for true Ironfish.

This is slightly silly.   It doesn't take years to train for such a distance.  I've been training seriously since about last September. Call it six months.  However, yes, the first time you do it, it is a little daunting.  (180 lengths of the pool can make you feel like you're on a hamster wheel, just sayin')

And honestly?  For the real distance swimmer, this would just be... well, Wednesday.  

I'm getting there...

My basic training plan (yes, this is overtraining for the two-mile swim I have planned for the summer. I bet I won't regret it, though) is to carefully increase distance on normal training days.  About half the time, I have time for a longer swim. Other days, I need to do shorter ones to get to work on time.   Weekends, I have time, so they're my "longish" swim.

Then once a month I'll do a challenging swim like today.  It started with a test to see if I could swim two miles, then I increased the distance a little the next month, and today it was two and a half.

I've been told by other adult-onset marathon swimmers that the first time you swim 5,000 yards. it can be pretty exciting.   I'm looking forward to that next month.

It does amuse me that distances that used to make me happy look like warm-ups now.  I look forward to the day when two and a half miles looks like a warmup, too.

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