This morning, before my alarm clock buzzed away at 4:45 AM, I turned over to the green hue showing 4:40 AM. I closed my eyes and thought 10 minutes passed only to open them again and show 4:44 AM. Might as well get up.
I walked outside to check the email to see if Coach Danielle made any changes to the scheduled Open Water Swim (OWS) or the Bike ride after. No emails! Let's get some electrolytes from the Coconut Water in the fridge, then flip the lights on to waken Irene. She still did not get up and I eventually had to speak her name to brush off the Sand from her Eyes place there by Mr. Sandman.
Most of our gear was in the truck, just to get dressed and drive down to Corey Beach in Bayport. It was still misting and as soon as we arrived a little after 6:00am, the mist lifted. The sky was cloudy. At the same time, I noticed my Facebook Friend John, also pull up. It was his first OWS of the season, and part of his training for Ironman Lake Placid. He's probably the most positive person I have ever met and was itching to get into the anticipated cold water.
Irene and I walked over to some picnic tables and squeezed into our wetsuits. We walked over to the waters edge and walked right in. The water was not that terribly that cold, probably the wetsuit kept me warm. However, my feet did not balk as I got up to waist high and put my face in the water and started to swim toward the first buoy. What was unexpected was the water was fairly clear. I could see a few rocks and small crab shells, nothing icky or disgusting.
So, I looked over to about a football field length away a red buoy with a few swim caps swimming towards it and away from it. I guess that is the direction I needed to swim towards. I made sure I was calm by taking easy strokes doing my best from what I learned and practiced in the lined bottom concrete fish tank with the addition lay of neoprene rubber on my skin. It was very easy to do my best to get to the other buoy as fast as I could, but I wanted to make sure my technique as strong and smooth. As I get stronger over the next several months, my better technique will take ever and I started winding my arms faster and faster.
I finally got to the other side, and it seemed like my sighting was good with minimal amount of course corrections. In the distance I could see Irene's cap in the water with Coach Danielle paddling along side on her Stand Up Paddleboard. This time last year, she was just learning to swim and I am so proud of her! Eventually for this training she did a 1/4 mile and that is enough for Smith Point Sprint Triathlon, next week.
I ended up with 3/4 of a mile for my swim session and I was very happy. It was time to get on our bikes and head out. As I walked towards the shore, my felt a stick on the back of my neck and I realized it was some chafing from the zipper pull that I wound up so that it would not interfere with my arms.
The group of us headed out east and Irene had an hour of bike riding, so she rode around the area and she had a great workout. I did my best to keep up, and as the distance between me and the lead group got further apart. I focused on what was in front of me and did my best to respond my gear shifting based on the inclines, decline and my cadence. As soon as I get my power meter, I will be able to measure how much power I am dishing out and focus on that number. I think I like that because the gamer in me will focus on that.
I decided to make a left, because I noticed someone from the group who had some derailleur issues make a left. He was not that far ahead and I followed thinking he knew which way to go. All of the sudden, my friend came up from behind me and I was like, I definitely made the wrong turn :) A few minutes later, they were gone. My schedule had me bike for 45 minutes out and 45 minutes back, but I felt good. I rode around until, I somehow reached
William Floyd Parkway
and I turned back.
One my way back, I latched on to someone who seemed like was going in the right direction and hugged his rear wheel. Eventually, we came up to some construction, and I asked, "I must have passed Corey Beach?" The biker said, that's about 3 miles back. Oh well!
I finally found the rode and Irene patiently waited for me. She was excited with her workout and was thinking of running as well, however she did not have her running shoes, so she just waited. I suggested running on the beach, but she opted to say, "Nah, I don't like running on sand."
Overall I biked 34+ miles, the longest bike ride ever!