I've done Master Swim, an organized swim program for adults, in many places. I'm always one of the slower swimmers, but in my current Master Swim, these folks absolutely blow me out of the water (ok, perhaps not literally).
Amongst triathletes, I'm an okay swimmer. I'm somewhere in the middle of the pack. And of the three sports, it's the one that I place best in at any triathlon that I've done. But in Master Swim, I'm in the slow lane.... oh no, I stand corrected, it's the "development lane". And I'm the slowest person in that lane!
The workouts are written for elite swimmers. For an hour workout, we may have 700 m to warm up, then 6 x 150, then 10 x 50's and then something else, oh I don't know, maybe 4x10000m. I lose track after a while, so it doesn't really matter to me, because were I to complete all that we are supposed to do for that workout, I'd be in the pool until midnight. I get through maybe two thirds of the warm-up and then we move on. The 150's are supposed to be on 2:45. Are you kidding me? My 100's are on 2:30!!! And if we're doing this in the big 50 meter pool, then you can bet I'm missing that nice wall that I expect to find at 25 meters across so that I can jet myself to the other side.
They expect us to do backstroke and butterfly. While attempting to do the backstroke, you can call me Crash. I'm weaving back and forth in the lane just trying to propel myself forward. And as for the butterfly, I think I can flail my arms up and down once or twice to look like I'm attempting the stroke.
Now I do understand, I'm one of those triathletes who "crawls out of the woodwork" sometime in March or April to get back into the pool. I was a little bit busy training for a marathon during the winter, and I'll admit, I don't love to swim. I like it, but give me a chance to go run an hour, I'd take that any day over swimming laps in the pool.
The coaches are welcoming and encouraging and give some good tips on technique. But a part of me feels out of place amongst these swimming all-stars.
Photo courtesy of http://www.ci.san-marcos.tx.us