Developing a taste for ocean swimming again.


@postaday 187; #postaday2011.

Just as I do Monday through Friday, I was woken by my alarm, which was set to startle at 4:30 a.m. I thought to myself how it would be really nice to sleep in. Yesterday the winds howled across Hawaii. The National Weather Service tweeted that gusts were at 28.7 or more! I wanted to send out a simpering message to my new workout partner, Margie Davis, to see if we could put off the pain and suffering. Funny. I really thought I sent it out. Guess someone wanted me to put my ass on the line. Our first practice session for the Na Wahine Festival was this morning.

Glad we went. Margie is a kindergartner teacher and that means she’s a splendid explainer. We met in Waikiki.  Oahu’s South Shore is pumping, with waves 4 to 8 feet. It looked beautiful. As we walked along the promenade to the starting point, a beautiful rainbow showed up. Apparently this morning’s arriving cruise ship features a pot of gold!

At the water’s edge, Margie pointed out where the course would start, how to proceed across to the opposite wall, where the buoy would be, and how to swim back. Did I mention the waves were kind of big? I followed her into the water and we began to swim. I’ll need to take care of the fog in my goggles, and my swim cap slides around on my head. We used no hand paddles or fins. I used to swim at Ala Moana Beach Park years ago, before it was a homeless shelter. It all started coming back to me.

Margie swam like a champ. I zigzagged around, fiddled with my goggles, and switched off between freestyle and breaststroke so I could keep track of where she was, and where I was. Sort of. The waves sloshed me around quite a bit. Thanks to my recent masters swimming sessions, I’ve gotten into the habit of breathing every three strokes, so on both sides, and that helped with today’s adventure. I wonder? Will they paint a line on the bottom so I can see where the heck I’m going?

A few tips from Margie as we got out of the water and walked to where we parked at Kaimana. Share them? Maybe not! It’s always nice to connect with her. We cover a lot of territory when we get to talk!

We then did a slow transition and got on our bicycle shoes, our helmets, our gloves, our sunglasses, and then our bicycles. We were wearing what we wore while in the water. It was about 730 or so when we took off on our bicycles, so we were still a little wet. Margie told me to hose down my bicycle when I got home because the salt water dripping down from my padded bicycle shorts would be bad for the sprockets. So John got on it right away when I got home. What a guy!

Margie told me the bicycle course that circles Diamond Head and Kahala, and we went up Monsarrat together. I waited for her by the bark park and she told me to just go for it. So I poured it on. I really enjoyed this ride. It was a mix of hills and flats and the traffic wasn’t so intense just yet. I can see revisiting this route a few times between now and 9/11/11. I also liked wearing hardly anything, LOL!

Maybe a few times I’ll do the swim on my own while Margie continues her training for the Tin Man. I’ll definitely be doing the bike. I’ll have to talk to Joe and Tom Lileikis, my swim coaches at The Oahu Club, about the swim. I’ll admit that while in the water today I thought about how I kinda hate ocean swimming, sharing the murkiness with critters and finding myself on the reef a few times. I was glad this particular event is relatively short. However, I won’t rule out learning to like it, and heading out to the wind sock at Kaimana once in a while.

And I also thought about surfing again! FTW!

Author: lavagal

Hawaii Kai wife and mom. Melanoma Stage 3a Cancer is my new opponent. Writer, super sub teacher, triathlete, awesome cook, ocean girl with head-to-toe sun protection.

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