Monday, June 29, 2009

Greenlake Open Water Swim

We're over on Vashon this week while Frost goes to Pirate Camp. He's very excited and Wren is too. After a week of cooler weather we have a lovely hot day with cool breezes stirring the flowering blackberry canes lining the road. After Seattle, its very still. Slow. Comfortable. This is good because Joshua and I are both tired.

I got Josh up at 7.30am this morning to accompany me to Greenlake for the 1/2 mile open water swim. We swam from the boathouse theatre to the main Evans Pool beach. I didn't find myself out of breath - its only 32 laps and I routinely swim 50 at the pool - but its much more strenuous on your body because you can't see where you are going with your head down. The water is just a dark deep green with occasional shadows and bubbles across your goggles. Even when you pause to look up the horizon is a distant blur and you have to set your sights on something large and distinct. Swimming into darkness and blur made me feel a bit ill. Its also hard because you are swimming in a pack that kicks up legs and waves so you have to rotate further than you would in a pool to take a clean breath. This made my neck feel a bit stiff afterwards. Another difficulty is running out of the water. I felt really wobbly as I came up the steps. Not from being tired but kind of switching my muscles into another mode made me feel quite unsteady. I didn't have my balance right.

I definitely need more practice in Open Water swimming.

Anyway, I did well for my first attempt. I can't recall my time but I came in 22nd in the field which included men and women. Frost was very impressed and kept saying "you did REALLY WELL for the amount of experience you have. REALLY WELL"

The only downside was that I developed a migraine like eye-disturbance an hour afterwards. It seemed very like the visual disturbance Mum has complained of - almost like having stared into a bright like and having a shiny hole in your vision. It was unusual in that it was like a bright burning thread which moved from the left of my vision, across the center and out the left side in a period of about half an hour. I lay down and it improved. I didn't feel sick or have a headache but had a sense of spacial dislocation or vertigo.

I wonder what caused it? I was dehydrated (I had forgotten to drink water). Anyway, we are going to Vashon Thriftway and everyone is waiting.


nautilus said...

well done on the swim. your visual aberration sounds exactly the same as i had. I think it comes from stress or over tired ness - it passes soon. But I wonder if you needed the stress that the swim seems to have put you under? You dont say that you enjoyed it. Love MUM

Shannon said...

Hi Mum
I didn't feel under a lot of stress or more tired than usual. It WAS fun. I enjoyed the whole experience although the swim itself wasn't as comfortable as swimming usually is and I was interested how disorientating open water swimming can be which is why I emphasized it.