Our Masters swimming class is on hiatus for two weeks over the Christmas holiday. Our pool is still open though and there are time slots dedicated to Masters swimming. The difference is that we have to pay for a day pass ($3 and a handful of cents) and our instructor (Christine) shows up and swims with us. She has a workout for us to follow but she is there to workout just as hard as the rest of us.
Oh, and instead of 5:30am-7am, it runs from 6:30am to 8am. I soon discovered that an extra hour of sleep in the morning is tantamount to absolute decadence.
After a few days off for Christmas and the Boxing Day run, I showed up on Friday morning. Only a few days after Christmas and still feeling full from all the feasts we've indulged in, I figured Christine would say we were going to have an easy, post-festivities workout.
I believe her exact words were "so, I was thinking we could swim 100 x 50m. Everyone ok with that?".
I believe my response was "ummm, I thought we only had a class from 6:30-8am?" to which she responded "oh, we'll probably go from 6:30-8:30am" to which I responded "well, I have only planned for 1 1/2 hours and don't want my blood sugar to climb too high so I'll do what I can before I have to leave at 8am".
And so it began.
There were 7 of us and we had four lanes. Six of us paired off and were going to do each 50m on 1 minute and 15 seconds which gave us 15 seconds (or so) recovery between each one.
Brad, the seventh swimmer, was going to do them all on 55 seconds. That gave him lots of rest as well so I'll leave it up to you to imagine how fast he swims.
The entire workout was:
10 x 50m freestyle
10 x 50m pull
5 x 50m drill/swim (do 25m of a drill and then swim back the second 25m)
25 x 50m (butterfly, back, breast, free - repeat over and over until you complete 25 sets of 50. Or, for people like me - swim 25 x 50m of freestyle because that's the only stroke you can do).
10 x 50m kick
10 x 50m pull
5 x 50m swim
25 x 50m (build, explosive, fast, fast, easy - repeat five times)
Which, if you do the math, is 5 kilometres of swimming.
Good lord. So much for a post-turkey easy workout.
We didn't start until 6:45am and I was bound and determined to leave by 8am. My sugar climbs by the minute when I'm unhooked from my pump. I had started with a blood sugar of 5 and figured I'd be around 9 by 8am. If I stayed until 8:30am, I'd be up around 13. Plus I have never done more than 3k before and didn't think jumping from 3k to 5k in one go was a particularly good idea.
So I swam. Back and forth, sip of Nuun, back and forth, sip of Nuun. Over and over again until 8am. I managed to swim 60 x 50m, which is 3 kilometres, in 1 hour and 15 minutes. I was pretty tired by the end and my swim technique was beginning to suffer as my arms grew weary.
At 8am, I said goodbye and hauled myself shakily out of the pool as the rest of the group prepared to swim another 40 x 50m. As I left, Christine said "Have a great day. Are you coming tonight?".
I just swam 3k.
Was I coming back that evening to do it all again?
But apparently people did. They swam their 100 x 50m, went home, had a nap, did a few things and then went back for another two-hour workout.
Just when I thought I was hardcore...