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Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS - Swim2 mile Cable


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Crystal Lake, Illinois
United States
Crystal Lake Park District
75F / 24C
Sunny
Total Time = 1h 01m
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

This was going to be a very long day for me. Some background: this was the first day of my vacation and my sister and her daughter's are coming into town this afternoon for the week. My brother from San Diego got into town yesterday and tomorrow is my son's baptism. The rest of the day will be spent trying to get the house/yard in shape for the party tomorrow and still have some time left over to spend with the family that is in town. I'm behind on miles for the 400 mi challenge and need to get in a ride today so....
Event warmup:

....my warmup was to get up early and do 20 miles on the bike. I parked at Main Beach (3 mi. from my house) and went for a ride. Got back 45 minutes before race time. The line was already long to check in. It didn't seem to matter if you registered before or not, other than $2. What's the point? They need to have 2 lines. Anyway, stood in line and ate 2 bananas, a bar, and drank 1 bottle of gatorade and 1 bottle of water. I was having a breakfast buffet while everyone around me was just waking up. It was pretty funny. Talked to the couple in front of me for a while, they had seen me riding toward the beach. Got checked in, went out to the beach and looked around for Whizz and Coredump (Laura and Chris). After a while they spotted me. This is the second time I've met Laura at an event and the first for Chris. BT'ers are such nice people. Also, it feels awkward to meet face to face with people you communicate with a lot on the internet. I wish I'd spend some time hanging out with them to get to know them a little better but I'm always such a nutcase at these things I have a hard time making casual conversation. Anyway we talked about the course and the water and said hi to Pete and Katie who came with Laura. The water was about 76 degrees so Chris and Laura were going sans wetsuit. I needed the suit. I was not going without the suit. I am now admitting I am wetsuit dependent. I may need a program, but I'll worry about that later. So my parents and bro show up and I chit chat with them for a few. Then they hold the pre race announcements. I got in the water for about 10 seconds just to get wet. Then I walked down to the start, following Laura and Chris as they swaggered down toward the front in their swimsuits. I am not worthy.
Swim
  • 1h 01m
  • 3219 meters
  • 01m 54s / 100 meters
Comments:

I ended up on the inside track which was a mistake. I tend to veer to my right in OW so I kept finding myself slightly to the right of the buoys which was only a problem once the leaders made the turn and were swimming back at me. DOH! I think I had two low points in this race. This was the first one. Unable to get myself to swim to the left, the leaders already passing me on their way back in and going through that initial fatigue I feel in all three sports but seems the worst in swimming. I finally forced myself left enough to get a swimmer on my right. Oh, did I forget to mention that my bilateral breathing needs work? So I get the swimmer on my right and I notice that she is doing breast to sight for a few strokes then switching to the crawl then back and forth. I'm able to barely catch up when she is sighting and then almost lose her when she switches. A plan is hatched! Unfortunately I lose here in the turn, but at least I've made it this far and I'm through the initial fatigue period. Now I'm into the regular fatigue. Yeesh. The back half of the first lap was only slightly more fun than the first half. I couldn't find anyone to sight off of and how people draft is a mystery to me. I keep thinking I see bubbles from someone's feet in front of me and after a minute of thinking I'm drafting I realize it's bubbles from my own hands entering the water. For a while I kept sighting off of a guy swimming to my right. I chuckled to myself when I realized he was so far to the right he was swimming into the path of the oncoming swimmers. Then I looked up and I was too! Serves me right for that little chuckle. Swam quickly and sharply to my left and continued on. They really could use smaller buoys in between the bigger ones to help us out, couldn't they? Four buoys over 1/2 mi. distance doesn't seem like a lot. As I arrive at the first marker to turn and begin the second lap two thoughts are fighting for attention in my mind. First, should I stop and wave and yell to my family on the beach so they know where I am? After all, I'll be swimming for over an hour, what's ten seconds to give 'em a shout out? They got up early and dragged themselves over here (Jen is here with the kids, too) so they deserve a little love, right? The second thought is that the problem with an out and back 2 lap course is the temptation to not. Do the second lap, that is. I'm really thinking about it. I'm wondering if I've bitten off more than I can chew and would it really that bad to say I did 1 mile? I was considering switching my registration to the 1 mile swim anyway. This was the second low point I mentioned earlier. I decide on issue #1 that if I can touch here I'll jump up and wave and shout. After making sure nobody is right behind me I stop and try to touch bottome. Nope. I start swimming again. I'm afraid if I just yell and wave without it being absolutely clear I'm just saying hi that the boats will come in to save me. Issue #2 is decided for me when I think about having to stand in front of my fellow BT'ers in this race and tell them I wimped out. Forget it. I'm already around the turn and headed back out again I may as well suffer through and finish. I'm almost done, anyway (not really, but that's what I'm telling myself). I decide to try to re-implement my strategy I discovered on the first leg of the swim. Find someone who swims a little faster than me but spends energy to sight. Put them on my right, and sight off of them. I find someone and this works for a while. Then, again, I realize they are too close to the other side. I'm swimming on the correct side, but just barely and I'm getting too close the drifters crossing the line coming back. As I lean to my left on my next stroke, opening up my chest, someone coming the other way barrels right into my body. They slide right past and we both keep going as if nothing happened. Had I not leaned to my left I'm assuming we would have cracked heads. Unbelievable. This convinces me that I'm going to spend the rest of the race WAY outside. Much like an accident with a car, it doesn't matter if I was in the right place. Right and hurt is still hurt. So I veer WAY left. While sighting I think back to something my brother said on the beach before the race. He was talking about how far away the last bouy looked and he was amazed. Here I am having swum quite a while on the second leg out and I'm thinking it looks just as far away. I'm thinking "If you think that buoy looks far away from the beach you should see how far away it looks from halfway there!" This thought carries me for a while as I flounder toward the final turn. I wish I could swim like a flounder. I could swear the second half of this leg was somehow lengthened. Maybe they moved the marker. I finally reached the turn and head for home. There's a guy in a black and red wetsuit I've been sighting off of for the last couple hundred yards. He's muscular and looks like a good athlete so I decide I want to beat him in. I'm way to the outside but sighting off of him near the middle for another couple hundred yards when I decide I want to get out of my "comfort" zone and really push it the rest of the way in. I pick up the pace a little and move more toward the middle. I come up on a guy. He's too close the inside for my taste so stay to his left. I'm thinking I'll get in front of him and then veer inside. When I get next to him he speeds up a little and matches me. I concentrate on rotating properly which always speeds me up a little. This turned into a little game with us. This is going to sound like a corny statment, but this was by far the best part of the swim and to me is the essence of athletic competition. We were pushing each other, making each other swim faster. There was no animosity, but neither of us would give an inch. We swam no more than 1 foot apart for most of the last 1/2 mile. It was amazing. He'd get up to where I was looking at his waist, then I'd get up a little, but that was it. Neither one of us could clear the other. I don't know who the guy was, and after the race I couldn't find him. I'll explain why in a minute. So the two of us are battling it all the way in. We've smoked Mr. Muscles. I've changed my goal from beating this guy next to me to just maintaining this pace we've established. We've now been doing this long enough that there is no point in "beating" the other guy because we are too equal, and both probably going harder than we can maintain. He's got one advantage, the inside track. He's angling too far to the outside and eventually I wonder if he knows he needs to turn right toward the beach for the finish. I guess I cracked first, but I paused for a moment to let him get in front and cut behind him to angle toward the beach. He corrected just after that. I tried to catch back up to him on his right side but I had nothing left for sprinting and could not make up any ground. I followed him in about 6 ft. behind. As we got closer I could see the bottom and then see it getting closer. I should have continued swimming until my hands touched the bottom which is what I did at the sprint and worked well there. Lesson learned. Another lesson learned is this. When you spend an hour swimming your body is not ready to walk right away. I put my feet down and tried to stand up. I say tried because my calves and inner thighs on both legs immediately cramped/locked up. Add to this some extreme disorientation and I fell over to my right. I veer to my right, I might as well collapse to my right. I put my hands down to steady myself and tried again. My right leg loosened up enough to at least move it so I hobbled/fell/stumbled/weaved the rest of the way in. Throughout all of this I completely lost track of the guy in front of me so any thoughts of talking with him were lost. Arrrrrgh, the pain. I hobbled across the finish, still cramping. Jen was there with my daughter who had run up to the gate and was jumping up and down waiting for me. I couldn't pick her up so I leaned down and grabbed her in a bear hug and just rolled/fell to the ground with her on top of me. Took me 20 minutes to wash all the sand out of the wetsuit but it was worth it. After a minute of laying there I was able to stand without cramping. That was nice. Said hi to all the family, kissed Jen who was so happy for me and headed for the showers.
What would you do differently?:

I need more experience sighting and drafting so I'm better at both, but as far as what I'd do different for THIS race, only one thing. I should have started to the far left instead of the far right.
Post race
Warm down:

Warm down was hectic. Tried to eat and drink something, clean up, talk to Laura and Chris, keep an eye on my kids, talk to my family and not fall over all at the same time. It was pretty much a blur. I remember asking Chris if he won, only half joking. He commented that the course was short by about 5-6 minutes. A lot of other people said the same thing. The girl who has won it the last two years came in 6 minutes faster than her usual time so I guess that seals it. I'll take 1:07 vs. 1:01, considering I did a 1.5 mi. in the pool the previous weekend that took me 1:05. I know the course couldn't have been THAT short.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I could say training, but it wasn't that I didn't train enough for this. It was that I picked a race that was beyond what my training has me ready for. Does that make sense? I wanted to push myself to see what I could do and I did it.

Event comments:

This is a pretty good race. Checking in could be run better and course the right distance would be nice. My wife mentioned it was odd there were no drinks/snacks set up. I thought it was odd too, although I had brought my own and didn't need anything. It was fun to do something right in my town. We have this swim and we have a half-marathon. We should have a tri. We could put on a good one, I'm thinking.




Last updated: 2006-07-07 12:00 AM
Swimming
01:01:00 | 3219 meters | 01m 54s / 100meters
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Suit: Sleeveless longjohn
Course: It's a wading start although those of us toward the rear were only in up to our ankles/knees. "GO" and we start wading forward. The course is straight out and back, 1/2 mi. each leg. So two laps. There are 1 milers doing one lap, so the course will be much less crowded the second lap.
Start type: Wade Plus: Shot
Water temp: 76F / 24C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Average Drafting: Bad
Waves: Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Average
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Evaluation
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

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2006-07-24 11:23 AM

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Crystal Lake, IL
Subject: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS

I forgot the best comment of the day.  My wife watched everyone coming out of the water.  After congratulating me here's the first thing she says to me.

"Laura kicked your a$$."

 

DOH!  Nice swim Whizz.

 



Edited by hangloose 2006-07-24 11:34 AM


2006-07-24 11:58 AM
in reply to: #491128

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Champion
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Whizzzzzlandia
Silver member
Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS

Hee hee hee...

Right back atcha!

 

Whizzzzzzzzzzzz

2006-07-24 12:09 PM
in reply to: #491128

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Elite
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Racine, WI
Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS

Fabulous race, HL!  2 miles would be one hell of a reach for me...hmmm, maybe next year

In the meantime, warm down is hectic...which is what pre-race BT food fests are for

2006-07-24 3:26 PM
in reply to: #491203

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Crystal Lake, IL
Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS
CindyK - 2006-07-24 12:09 PM

In the meantime, warm down is hectic...which is what pre-race BT food fests are for

That's why I'm looking forward to Pleasant Prairie!

 

2006-07-24 4:37 PM
in reply to: #491128

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Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS
Great swim!  I did 1.5 mi in the ocean last summer and I know that feeling of being dioriented when you stand up!!  Sounds like it was really great!!
2006-07-24 4:38 PM
in reply to: #491128

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Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS

Ooops!



Edited by oliveview 2006-07-24 4:38 PM


2006-07-25 7:46 PM
in reply to: #491128

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Seattle
Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS

HL, what a great report.  I'm so impressed.... you've been at this how long?  and now you've got enough training under you to swim for that distance at a sub 2 min/100meters?  Wow! 

Your race reports are full of "what was going on in my head".  It's a real insight into the sport and what makes an athlete an athlete. 

 

2006-07-26 8:02 AM
in reply to: #491128

Champion
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Orange, Massachusetts
Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS

I'm more tired after reading this than from Ironman.  You had me on the edge of my seat, hoping you were going to beat that guy in.  LOL, that was a fun report to read, glad you had a good time.  Don't worry about having to be wetsuit dependent....Whizzzzzz probably looks better in a swimsuit that either you or I do anyway! 

 

2006-07-26 8:21 AM
in reply to: #491128

Member
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Draper, Utah
Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS
ahh, the ole Splish Splash Dash of Crystal Lake. Congrats on a fine race.

I remember it well. Having moved to Utah now, I do miss the swim in Crystal Lake, however is there much of a lake left, when we moved in January, I recall the lake being WAY WAY down, has it recovered much?

As for the Tri, Crystal Lake used to have a tri way back in the days, however with Lakewood and Lake in the Hills being right next door, the powers that be (Park Districts) couldn't work with them to get the roads closed so it fell by the wayside.

Matt at the Park District, who has since left there was trying to get something set up but with his departure I'm sure it's fallen by the wayside, sad but true. Crystal Lake would be a prime place for a Sprint Tri.

Again, congrats!

Dan Meihls
(a former Crystal Lake'er)
2006-07-26 6:49 PM
in reply to: #493444

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Crystal Lake, IL
Subject: RE: Splish, Splash and Dash-2 mi OWS

DanM - 2006-07-26 8:21 AM ahh, the ole Splish Splash Dash of Crystal Lake. Congrats on a fine race. I remember it well. Having moved to Utah now, I do miss the swim in Crystal Lake, however is there much of a lake left, when we moved in January, I recall the lake being WAY WAY down, has it recovered much? As for the Tri, Crystal Lake used to have a tri way back in the days, however with Lakewood and Lake in the Hills being right next door, the powers that be (Park Districts) couldn't work with them to get the roads closed so it fell by the wayside. Matt at the Park District, who has since left there was trying to get something set up but with his departure I'm sure it's fallen by the wayside, sad but true. Crystal Lake would be a prime place for a Sprint Tri. Again, congrats! Dan Meihls (a former Crystal Lake'er)

plenty o lake left.  It's in great shape now.  Thanks for the history lesson.  Here's some history back at you.  I don't know how far back you go but my grandparents lived on Crystal Lake and when they built 176 they blocked the spring that feeds the lake.  Dried up half of it and my grandma was part of the founding of the committee that works to preserve the lake.  They lobbied the state and got them to dig out the spring so that it could go back to feeding the lake.

side note:  oh what I would give for their old house now.  They sold in the mid 70's.  It's worth over a mildo now.

 

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