Today, I had the pleasure of participating in Swim Across America. What an amazing experience. It was organized by Mitch Doren and some other amazing people. Mitch is part of my Crossfit Box. There was a crazy amount of representation from Craic there, all swimming and volunteering in support of Jess Harrington, a member of Craic who is currently kicking cancer’s ass. I swam the half-miler and was really nervous going into it. I have never swam in open water, despite swimming competitively in my past.
As we got into the water, I panicked. Full-on panicked. They have an great system where they have “angel” swimmers out there to help you if something is wrong. Since we were part of Mitch’s crew, we had the amazing Craig Beardsley swimming with us. I started swimming and couldn’t seem to catch my breath. Then I thought about how I still had the full half-mile to go and the thought of doing the entire swim without catching my breath freaked me out. Craig just said “You’re fine. We’re just swimming here! It’s a great day for a swim!” After he said that, I did about 100 meters doing side stroke and then I was fine. My freestyle felt good and I just kept switching that off with breast stroke. My friend Moira (also from Craic – surprise!) was swimming beside me and we did the swim together. It was such a great experience and I will definitely be doing the full mile next year. I wasn’t even tired by the end. So glad to have my rookie year out of the way. Upwards and onto next year!