Friday, July 14, 2006

Ocean Swim and Hill Run

Today I tried a real ocean swim with a wetsuit and all. I went with a group from the LA Tri Club, and was able to borrow a wetsuit from a generous club member. This was my first time with a wetsuit and I learned a few things, like how hard it can be to put one on. It was even more difficult to take it off and took what seemed like forever. I learned what chaffing from a wetsuit is (painful on my neck), and how a wetsuit can make your arms tired from being so tight around your shoulders. But I was warm and my legs floated very well.

I was also really humbled when I jumped into the ocean with the group and they just blasted away, leaving me far behind. I figured I was slow, but now I have a greater appreciation of just how slow. I got some great practice with sighting as I seemed to go left for some reason. I think part of the problem was that as swells passed me they would tend to turn me perpendicular to them. So I had to correct for this constantly. I went about half way and saw the main group coming back, so I figured I should turn around. Everyone passed me on the way back, and then I headed for the beach. Timing the waves was a bit tricky, but I managed to not get pounded.

After the swim a smaller group went for a short run up the Los Liones trial, a quick jog from the beach. The trail goes straight up into the hills so I had a hard time keeping my heart rate down, but it was fun to try trail running. It is a bit beyond my abilities, but it is always good to streach yourself. I ran for 4 miles and it took me just over an hour.

I had a great time, but I'm not sure I would do it again. The traffic coming back was brutal. It took about two hours to drive the 11.5 miles to my office. I could run faster than that, and I am a slow runner. Sometimes LA sucks!

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