Friday, December 2, 2011


Met with Gords and Josh at the GSL Marina for our weekly polar bear swim.  I was excited and nervous as usual.  I've been putting a lot of synapse firing lately about cold water swimming.  I really want to keep working on my cold water threshold and this is the best way to do it.  I do love the invigorating feeling you get when you finish.

As Josh puts it, the 3 dumbest people in Utah!
  We were already cold before we even got in.  Gords and Josh decided to do one lap and I've decided I don't care as much about actual swimming in the cold water as opposed to just being in it and constantly moving.  Josh had his wife and kids there.  His wife kept telling us we were crazy...yes, we get it, but it's what we do!!!  He wasted no time in jumping in and taking off.  Gords was quick to follow.  I was 2 seconds behind them and just kept walking till the water was at my waist then I leveled out and did heads up breast stroke.  It didn't seem as bad when I was walking in.  As soon as my back got wet, I knew the water was colder, MUCH COLDER than last week.  I just focused on my breathing and constantly moving as fast as I can.  My breathing leveled out in the normal minute then my hands started to get very cold along with my feet.  My brain called or an exodus of blood from them and they were responding!  I just kept thinking about how painful it was but I kept going.  I was also trying a different pair of goggles to see if it helped with the cold I feel between my eyes.  It did help a TINY bit but pretty much no.  I just need to build tolerance.
I got about 1/3 down the marina when I saw Josh and Gords coming back.  I turned around and made it back before they did but didn't want to spend any less time in the water than them.  I was glad when they got near so I could get out. 

These goggles......They do nothing!!
 Most times when I get out, I'm just cold and uncomfortable.  This time EVERY movement was married to pain.  Josh and Gords were feeling this too and we had hit a new barrier.  Gords took a temp reading and it was 41!  WHOAH!!!  Glad we didn't know that before.  I say we learn of the temps AFTER from now on!  New record for time and temp for all of us.  I'm very proud of that.  It comes with a price though.
The look pretty much says it all!
I got dressed and in my car where I followed Josh to his house.  His wife let me use one of their showers so I can clean up and warm up even more.  I realized something in the shower.  1) It takes a LOT of discipline to forcibly make yourself walk into water that cold.  2) It takes even MORE discipline to make yourself stay in water when you are in that much pain.  3) It took the same amount of discipline to make myself turn off the hot shower and get out!!!  :)  The hot water felt SO good I could have stayed in it for an hour and not cared.
After Josh's wife fed me (THANK YOU!), he and I headed to Salt Lake Community College to see a private screening with Gords of Evaporating Shorelines.  It's a documentary on the Army Corps of Engineers plan to dike off 91,000 acres of the lake for mineral farming and how it's going to impact the life around the GSL.  I liked most of the film and it did get me thinking.  I did learn quite a bit about the type of wildlife that is a MAJOR part of the GSL and how this construction will severely negatively impact the lake and the life that goes with it.  I wrote a letter to Jason Gipson of the Army Corps of Engineers to ask him to reconsider.  The amount of minerals taken from the lake just isn't worth the permanent damage that will be done.
"Only when the last tree has died and the last river is poisoned and the last fish caught will we realize that we can't eat money" - Cree Proverb
On a side note, I did think it was nice that the 3 of us from the WFPBC were there in our hoodies.  I think we look cool and "unified" in representing the swimmers of GSL at the screening.

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