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Great Chesapeake Bay Swim - 4.4 Mile - SwimOther

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Stevensville, Maryland
United States
Great Chesapeake Bay Swim
76F / 24C
Total Time = 2h 18m 6s
Overall Rank = 236/640
Age Group = 40-44
Age Group Rank = 37/63
Pre-race routine:

Ate two bagels, three cups of coffee. Two bottles of Infinit at regular strength. On Chocolate Raspberry GU Roctane. (Note: Best flavor of Roctane for eating. Not sure about using it during an intense race, though).
Event warmup:

Hung out in the Tent with Tony & Maranda. We had two others join us in the tent. One fella, Tim, was doing his 6th. He gave us several important tips.
#1 Stay in the middle. Don't worry about the tips about the current, because that changes depending on your pace.
#2 Stay away from the islands. You may be tempted to head over for protection from the waves, but they have currents that can keep you trapped.
#3 You inhale a lot of fumes. Whether they are sinking from the traffic on the bridge above, or from the fleet of support boats, he was right. Ew! And I am glad that he told me about it ahead of time so it wasn't a surprise! Thanks!
#4 You can touch bottom for the last 1/4 mile. I did a combination of water run, dolphin dive, and swim for this stretch. I passed at least 10 people in the final stretch, and did NOT get passed by any.

Oh, yeah! My warmup consisted of jumping into the water (actually to empty my bladder) and then doing some windmills with my arms. I also cracked my neck.
  • 2h 18m 6s
  • 7744 yards
  • 01m 47s / 100 yards

The beach start actually was NOT a melee. The contact happens as you enter the between bridge portion. It forms a bottle neck, and I probably lost 2 minutes waiting for it to sort itself out. I was just trying to avoid getting kicked in the face.
The issue in the shipping lane was not the current (or tide) but the 2-3 foot rollers. They were not going at my exact rhythm. The nerve. So I got to swallow some water/gasoline mix. Hydration at its worst!
What would you do differently?:

Train more? Nah! That couldn't help. I also would have started faster to avoid the bottleneck at the bridge.
Post race
Warm down:

Drank a bunch of stuff. Ate a sammy. Found my backpack. Found Maranda & Tony at the firetruck showers. Went to their tent. Ate some fries. Bought my 4.4 sticker - Yay!

What limited your ability to perform faster:

#1 General lack of athletic ability
#2 I have been "swimming" for only 4 years
#3 First time swimming in a race in actual waves over 6"
#4 Lack of volume

Event comments:

There should seriously be some free beer and better free food for the participants. Seriously. I was ready to celebrate!

Last updated: 2012-06-04 12:00 AM
02:18:06 | 7744 yards | 01m 47s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/63
Overall: 0/640
Performance: Good
Suit: Sleeveless
Course: Beach start. Right turn around stone pier. Left turn between spans of Bay Bridge. Straight until the current sweeps you out to the final stretch in a shallow, sandy bay.
Start type: Run Plus: Shot
Water temp: 76F / 24C Current: Medium
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Average Navigation: Below average
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Below average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2012-06-11 7:51 AM

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NOVA - Ironic for an Endurance Athlete
Subject: Great Chesapeake Bay Swim - 4.4 Mile

2012-06-11 4:21 PM
in reply to: #4254888

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Melon Presser
Subject: RE: Great Chesapeake Bay Swim - 4.4 Mile

I love the smell of diesel in the morning.

Well done, Platyfoot! Glad to see you finally putting those flippers to good use--great time in a pretty crazy race!

2012-06-11 4:42 PM
in reply to: #4256249

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Worcester, MA
Subject: RE: Great Chesapeake Bay Swim - 4.4 Mile

sorry I didn't find you guys - I took the first shuttle over, found a shady spot, and kept my butt there as much as possible.

I also stayed center span and was much happier with that than last year.

nice job!

2012-06-12 12:32 PM
in reply to: #4254888

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Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: Great Chesapeake Bay Swim - 4.4 Mile
Not sure why they don't use boats that don't require gasoline! I know they have to move quickly... but SO many boats with motors... yuck. I'm pretty sure those people don't do open water swimming.

Sounds like a you had a great swim! Nice time too! I have thought about this swim race off and on for years, but the bay looked brutal for swimming. And I hate wearing a wetsuit with sleeves, and I heard there can be jellyfish. So yeah, maybe it is not for me.

Glad you enjoyed it and had a solid swim!

2012-06-13 7:36 AM
in reply to: #4254888

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NOVA - Ironic for an Endurance Athlete
Subject: RE: Great Chesapeake Bay Swim - 4.4 Mile
Thanks!  There were 0 Jellyfish, FYI.
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