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Swimming - How Do I Loathe Thee?

Let me count the ways.

Have you ever hated a sport? Like the whole sport? Or a particular physical activity altogether? Just… everything about it?

Because yesterday I hated swimming. In my last attempt to minimize my chances of drowning at the Olympic triathlon on Sunday, I made it out to a 50m swimming pool, instead of my regular 25m.

This community centre is much older, and the pool is only four lanes wide. In fact, it did not look any longer than the one I’ve been suffering in twice a week for the past few months. I even came up to a lifeguard to check. “50m”, he nodds. I glance at the pool again and shrug. “Must be some sort of optical illusion”.

Of course, I realize that the pool is, in fact, 50m about half way through my first half lap, as right about where I can usually stop and catch my breath, there is water. And more water. And I have to keep swimming.

“Just keep swimming Just keep swimming Just keep swimming swimming swimming”

Very quickly, I am in an incredibly foul mood. I’m about as buoyant as a brick this morning. The more rational part of my brain desperately wants to attribute that to a great full body workout the day before, the exhausting 5k timed trial on Tuesday, or the cumulative 4-5 hours of kayaking I did this weekend. But the lizard brain is already on “I’m-a-failure” train.

“This is dumb!” Choo-choo! “What’s the point of this mindless activity?” Choo-choo! “I hate swimming!” Choo-choo! “I suck.” Choo-choo! “I can never do anything right!” CHOO-CHOO! I. Am. Pissed.

Today swimming seems like a pointless exercise in holding my breath. Quick sip of oxygen, followed by a long torturous exhale. Another quick sip. Not enough. Not nearly enough. I want more.

I like to breathe whenever I like. Call me a glutton.

I am angry, because I do not see progress.

I am not worried about covering 1.5km of distance. I will breast stroke, back stroke and fucking doggie paddle (there is a zoophilia joke in there somewhere) all the way. [At a second glance this whole sentence reads dirty.] I can do 1.5km on sheer brute force alone. Iron shoulders for the win.

It’s just so… unreasonable. If you practice a skill, any skill, be it swimming or prancercise, you should see progress, no? If I work on my basket weaving twice a week for few months in a row, my damn baskets should look better by the end, NO?

In the water, all reason stops. Regular laws of physics and life are suspended in liquid like the body itself. Body that is so lithe and strong on the ground, goes so limp and heavy in the water. Universe is in disarray.

Hey Mr Grump Gills You know what you gotta do when life gets you down? Just keep swimming Just keep swimming

Just keep swimming swimming swimming What do we do we swim, swim, swim OH HO HO How I love to swim When you WAAAAAANNTTT to swim you want to swim

Fucking Dory.

YOUR TURN: Have you ever hated a sport? Why? Been stuck with seemingly no progress?

Signing off, Solo


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