Swimming is awesome!
Last week I wrote a post about why swimming sucks. And it really does sometimes. But so does just about everything awesome, right? But it’s also pretty great.
The first time I went swimming (for exercise) I made it about 15 minutes and thought I was going to die. It was soooooo hard. But I made it a bit farther the next time and a bit farther and a bit farther. Which is one of the reasons I love swimming, I’m still new enough that I can see noticeable improvement with each workout so I constantly feel like I’m progressing. Sure, with running I sometimes feel like I’m getting better but I often feel like I just had a terrible run and am the worst runner in history. Then the next day I have a great run and move on.
I’m a stronger runner from swimming. Sure, everyone says cross training is important for runners but come on, it seems pretty much impossible to incorporate even more exercise into an already jam-packed marathon training schedule. Well, now that I’m funemployed, I seem to have lots of extra time for working out and have started cross training a lot and have noticed a lot of improvement in my running:
- I recover faster after long runs or speed workouts. This seems silly, but any soreness seems to disappear after swimming and I feel more like my normal self faster.
- My hips don’t hurt. What?! That’s possible?! I just always thought having sore hips was part of running. In the past it’s been pretty amazingly accurate that running more than 20 miles a week means my hips are sore. Not terribly sore, but sore. And now? Not at all! I think swimming has strengthened my hips and core so that I’m overall stronger and can handle more intense running.
- It’s fun! And can be meditative after awhile. I’m not good at slowing down and relaxing, but swimming can be pretty boring after the first few laps so I really have to take each lap or set as they come and focus on that.
- It gives you (or at least me) great arms. Seriously. That’s all about that.