Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Annual Mother's Day Swim, Sans Wetsuit

Seems like I'm making it a bit of a yearly tradition to go to a lake on Mother's Day and swim, and this year we had the extra incentive of wanting to launch Mackenzie's Christmas present kayak for the first time. My mom came up for the weekend and brought her kayak, and the two of them had a grand time on the water together. Somehow in all of the fussing around trying to get the kayaks loaded, I forgot my wetsuit.

Well, let's just say that I swam anyways but that water was C-O-L-D!!! Probably mid-60's if I had to hazard a guess. I had an immediate vagal reflex reaction (which means water was definitely below 70 degrees) where I just suddenly felt like I couldn't breathe and had to take a few breaststrokes just to work through it and get my heartrate back to normal. For those of you who haven't experienced this, if you do a swim or race in cold enough water and feel a panicky can't breathe kind of feeling immediately, just stop and let yourself adjust. You can often circumvent this response by making sure you get your face wet with cold water first. I did move past the reflex and then it was cold but tolerable and I probably swam for about 15 - 20 minutes before I got chilled enough that I had to stop. Oh, and I forgot about one other fun thing that happens when you swim without a wetsuit in lakes that are frequented by geese... swimmer's itch! It's driving me mad today.

Since the beginning of my Mother's Day weekend was fairly horrible, it was nice to end it on a good note doing what I love the most. Well, actually it ended with a yummy salmon BBQ when we got home, courtesy of my grill-meister hubby. So all's well that ends well.

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