After a month and a half of mayhem and crazy hours at work, I finally got to go back into the water today. I knew it was going to be a minor revelation. But I did not know it was going to be the one I ended up having.
The moment I pushed off the wall was nothing like at a normal practice. Usually that split second I push off, the world just goes quiet. If you swim regularly, I am sure you know that glorious feeling. Not today. I felt like a puppy scrambling across a slippery floor with paws too big for his little body for the first laps. Like an insect that was trapped in honey for too long and suddenly breaks free, flying madly into the air, somersaulting with exuberance and the new thrill of unencumbered freedom. So though it was not like a normal swim, it still was absolutely bloody glorious. Just different. I slithered and pawed through the water. Then my body clicked back into its element. Like, you know, a fish to water. It is hard to describe without going all pathetic or kitschy.
On one level, I really feel more at home in the water than on land. The reason it felt different at first today probably was not just because of several weeks without swimming. I suspect the lower back pain I suffer from had something to do with the feeling of release. You see, the many hours commuting in now cold weather, the very tough work challenges (though exciting and ultimately very successful) of the last month, coupled with a lack of sleep and exercise, not just swimming, had really taken its toll.
Anyway, I swam a moderate k, just then and there. No stretching or warm ups. Took me exactly 17 minutes according to my Garmin Swim, which all things considered isn’t bad.
Then some drills, kicking and a bit of back stroke. All up just a very mellow 1400 meters, but enough to feel born again and incredibly keen to get back into the water.