Friday, March 16, 2012

Did Someone Say Swimming?!

I went swimming THREE time this week! That’s impressive! To actually go do something by myself where I’m very out of my element, unsure of myself and pretty self-conscious… I’ve always LOVED swimming. Just something about being surrounded in water. It’s just FUN! I took a few swim lessons as a kid, but not enough to really know what I was doing. I told my Grandma about my swimming accomplishments this week and how I’m practicing to get better because I’ve never really known how to swim. She basically told me I was full of bologna. She said I’ve always loved swimming, and anytime there was a pool anywhere I’d be in it! She told me I knew how to swim better than all the other kids in my swimming class. And it is true, I was always a little ahead, but never confident about it.
Friday I went to the pool before I left for my drive back home. 3 laps and I had to take a break. SO OUT OF SHAPE! I could feel the guy standing next to me staring. Uhhhgg, I wanted to hold my breath and sink to the bottom of the pool to hide. He came closer and I looked over. He was an old man with gray hair, “Are you taking a swimming class?” He asked.
“No… just practicing! I wanted to, but they didn’t have intro to swimming this quarter. I’ve never really swam much, and I’ve just decided I want to get better.” I said with a smile.
“I was watching you and you’re putting way too much energy into it.” He sort of smiled and said, “You’re keeping your legs straight when you kick, and that’s working against your arms propelling you forward. You need to loosen up, and relax. It’s all in the ankles and the feet. Like this,” He moved his arms up and down in the water showing his technique. “It’s all in the feet. Like flippers.” He said with a smile. “What’s your name?”
“Nice to meet you Karalee. I’m Al. Al Wec.”
Wec... why does that sound so familiar? I thought.
“I started this facility in 1966 (or maybe it was 1967 I can’t remember). Yeah I know, I’m old. I use to teach swimming lessons here. It was fun.”
Whoa. Sheesh, this guy really knows what he’s talking about!
He asked me where I was from, and about school, and if I knew these people, and all about that… Then we got down to business. He told me about the timing of breathing. We practicing blowing bubbles in the water, apparently you breath out your mouth and this whole time I’d been breathing out my nose (shows how much I know). He told me once I got my breathing down it
would be a lot easier, more rhythmic and I wouldn’t be struggling for air so much. We practiced our kicking up against the wall. Then he watched me swim a lap. “You have a great stroke form, and your legs are looking better! You know, if you were to practice swimming the way you have been, you’d eventually get it down, and it would become easier once you new the right technique, but now you know, so learning will be easier. You’re well on your way to being an EXCELLENT swimmer!” He said with a grin. “Well Karalee, you might have to remind me of your name again in the future, but I’ll see you around. It was nice to meet you. Good luck, and enjoy your weekend!”
What a nice man! I hope I see him again when I go back to practice! I’m SO excited about swimming now. I actually really enjoy it. I’m going to get good. I am. I’m sticking to it this quarter. I’m going to get my lifeguarding for camp. I’m going to swim 3 times every week. Already I see improvement and that keeps me motivated! I’m so excited to go SWIM!

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