It’s hard to get up really early and go swimming. There, I’ve said it. Now I’m done complaining.
Perhaps it’s hard for you too. The bed is so warm and the covers so comfy. Add in a cat or two leaning on you for warmth and it’s easy to waste those precious minutes needed to get up out of bed and ready to go swim.
Even a half hour can make the difference in the morning. One of our swimming options begins at Marmion High School at 5:30 in the morning. That means leaving by 5:15 at the latest because it’s a five mile drive. Which actually means getting up at 4:50 a.m. to brush teeth, hit the bathroom and toss on something resembling clothing before heading to the pool.
To counter this dark ensemble of tasks, I resort to wearing really bright colors on mornings that we head to the pool. One of the swim coaches has long noticed my habit (it was hard to miss) of dressing like a human highlighter. He teases me whenever I’m not brightly dressed and color coordinated to boot. This is my coping mechanism. I may not have the hot body of an Australian swimmer like these bad boys, but no one wears a day-glo warmup like I do.
Whatever it takes, you know?
But the other pool option available to us allows a little more flexibility. I can get there at 6:00-6:15 a.m. and count on a lane opening up. It’s not such a morning shock to get there by six. I can sort of shake off the cats pressing me into the covers, ramble out of bed at a sane pace and even put on work clothes on before leaving. I gobble down a Larabar and take a water bottle with me. Good to go.
That’s what I did this morning and like magic a lane opened up the minute I walked into the pool. The water was a reasonable 79.2 degrees. I dangled my legs getting used to the wetness. It also takes a bit of stretching the old shoulders to get ready to swim. Then it’s a matter of just plunging in without pussyfooting around.
My warmup is no different than many: a few hundred meters with a pool float between the legs. Some paddle swimming to activate the shoulders. Then a few hundred meters of kicking with fins on. Finally I’m ready to go.
This morning I chose to do a set of 100 meter repeats. And on the first one I took off hard and set a new record for me: 1:44. Oh shut up. I can hear the laughter coming from as far away as Australia, where a few of my readers lurk, and where people all swim fast because there are reports of land sharks rising up from the billabong. And if those don’t get you, the giant crocs will swallow you in one bit.
Oh my gosh is Australia fun to write about! I never knew that! Can you imagine a dozen koalas doing kicking drills? A band of cockatoos crushing the IM medley? A collection of kookaburras killing the 100 meter fly?
HOW TO TALK LIKE AN AUSTRALIAN
See, all you have to do to become a faster swimmer is learn to talk like an Australian. It can’t help but rub off on you in the pool! That’s exactly how I plan to break 1:40 in in the 100 meter freestyle one day. You can do it too, because there’s actualy a guide to Australian slang that is bound to turn you into a faster swimmer too.
You can click through to that website, but here’s a few fun samples to inspire you to talk like an Australian:
- Bludger – Someone who’s lazy, generally also who relies on others (when it’s someone who relies on the state they’re often called a ‘dole bludger’)
- Brekky – Breakfast
- Cactus – Dead, Broken
- Drongo – a Fool, ‘Don’t be a drongo mate’
- Mongrel – Someone who’s a bit of a dick
- Piece of Piss – easy
- Root Rat – someone who enjoys sex (maybe a little too much)
- Skull – To down a beer
- Straya – Australia
- U-IE – to take a U-Turn when driving
Now, here’ show it works. Just watch while I speak like an Australian now. This is my Australian slang motivational speech about getting up early in the morning to swim:
Don’t be a bludger about this. Have a little brekky and don’t go cactus, cause that’s a bit of a Drongo or worse, a mongrel. This should be a piece of piss ya root rat. When it’s all over, you can skull like a Straya and do a U-IE on yer old self, ha heah?
See how easy that was? Now get your ass up even if you’re stuffed. And for the ladies, or the gents if you prefer, you get yourself a piece of stiffy snag from one of them Australian swimmer boys. You won’t regret it.