Sunday, August 19, 2012

18Aug12 - Bear Lake Swim

Got up at 0530 and got my gear ready.  The sink at this "room" was so small that I had to put the coffee pot into the sink to fill it up with water then pour the water from the coffee pot into my water bottles.  None of my bottles could fit in the sink and be under the faucet.  Left right at 0600 to Bear Lake.  Lang was going to be my paddler and he rode with me so we could talk logistics and how I like things done when I'm swimming.  It was pretty straight forward and we arrived there soon enough.  Got my gear and I was laughing as I realized I must have been the first to register because my number was 1.  Sweet.  Never been #1 before.  I just laughed that they better not expect anything because of it.  Loaded our kayaks into a trailer, loaded a bus then we took off for the 30 min drive to the start.  Lang and I got our gear together then we got in ready to go.

Lang and me before bus ride

I got in and Chad and I laughed a bit as wetsuit swimmers got in and said they were cold.  It was 68!  Chad and I were nearly sweating!  Took what seemed like a long time to get started.  I was just eager to get going to get it over with.
The start

I started off at a nice even pace but it only took about 5 minutes to feel the 10 mile race from last week and the ton of yard work I did Thursday.  This might turn out to be a LONG day!  After about a mile and 1/2 I got relaxed and focused a lot on my stroke.  My stomach was killing me at about mile 3 so I had to stop and.....take care of it.  hehe  I was moving at a pretty good pace and the feeds seemed to come quickly.  Lang told me at one feed that we were already halfway and that I was really moving.  I believed him and picked my pace up some....not wise in hindsight!

The water felt great and I was feeling pretty good.  My arms and shoulders were sore but nothing too bad.
When I got to my 6th feed, Lang said I was under a mile to go.  I told him no more feeds and I did 100 strokes normal then 100 strokes fast.  After 8 rotations of this (which is 1600 strokes) I started to get tired but took a peak to realize we weren't very close to land after all.  I swam a bit more then Lang said we had about 300 yards left.  He could see the harbor "real close".  I went really hard for as long as I could then after 400 strokes, I needed a drink.  Lang said he was sorry but we were still a bit away.  I jokingly told him that his sense of distance is S**T.  lol   I was now tired...TIRED.  Turns out that I still had about a mile left.  I was too tired to put any speed in so I just swam as well as I could.  My last mile was probably pathetically slow.  We were near the harbor because a police boat got next to me to escort me to the finish area.  Too many boats were coming and going and they were afraid I was going to get run over even with Lang there....which I almost did I was later told.
Finished in 3:48.06.  Not the greatest time but I was TANKED the last mile because I was doing 100 stroke sprints over and over earlier.  When I got in, the lady there that was taking the official times told me Congrats on finishing my 3 big swims.  The race director came down and told me the awards ceremony was going to be in 2 minutes.  I thought I had "just made it" but I later found out that they were waiting for me.  lol
After the awards were handed out, the race director asked if I was there.  When I raised my hand, he told everyone about the UT triple crown and how I was the only one to do all 3 swim races with the longest swim for each race.  He handed me a trophy.  I was surprised but really happy.  I haven't won a trophy since I was a kid.  It says, "2012 UTAH OPEN WATER SWIMMING SERIES WINNER".  Pretty sweet. 
my paddler Lang and me

Chad and me - He got me by 8 min this time

I was pretty sore but got help loading my kayak.  All of us left soon after then met for lunch.  When we were standing in line, I asked Lang how long it will be until the cops show up. 
Couple of side notes.  2 things I'm proud of:
1) I never turned into a "diva" on Lang.  I did tell him his distance sighting sucked but never went off on him. 
2) I NEVER sighted for direction.  I relied only on Lang for direction.  This took a LOT of discipline.  Every time I got tempted to look up to see where we were heading, I just forced myself to relax and TRUST MY PADDLER!  It worked well.  Many buoys got broken off and were floating all over the place.  Lang didn't follow them but kept a straight line for the finish.  Thanks buddy!
It was another great time with my swim buddy Chad.  I really like swimming with him and doing event like this with him make it all the better.  I'm glad I met you and glad we do so much to help each other.  You do a lot more on your end than I do on mine so thanks.
The race needs to be a bit better organized with markings and the food at the end was a joke but overall it was a great swim. 
Be back next year!.....unless I'm doing something cooler!


  1. That Utah Triple Crown is pretty kick ass, man. Congrats! Sounds like the last mile or two was brutal for you too. That damn marina seemed to never get any closer. I swear there was significant current and wake coming right at us from the steady stream of boat traffic exiting the marina. Agreed on the organization, too. There was ZERO food at the finish by the time I got there and the shirts were kinda lame. Still, I'm glad you guys (you and Chad) were there and the kind words went a long way. You guys really are inspiring.

  2. Nice job on the UTC. Can't wait for October and start getting the WFPBC going.