Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Swimming Anxiety

I am not typically a worrier, in fact I generally use stress as a motivator. I am all about pushing myself and testing my limits but currently, I seem to have a real battle going on in my mind. There are less than 3 weeks until the Hy-Vee Triathlon and my swimming confidence is far from where it should be. It seemed to be getting better, I had a nice couple of swims last week then I sent a video to the coach and he  gave me some pointers to improve my technique. I am going to be honest and tell you that this really 'effed up my swim this morning. I had an extremely difficult time trying to relax, which is a huge part of swimming. When you are running or biking, you don't have to think about much, it's pretty automatic. Being a new swimmer I have to try to think about hand position, body position, arm position throughout the stroke, how and when to kick, when to breath and how to breath without sucking in a gallon of water.It's all pretty damn overwhelming, mostly because I have signed up to swim 1500 meters in a lake in less than 3 weeks.

I am not defeated! 
My plan is to battle those little negative thoughts that keep creeping into my head, you know the ones that say, "will I have to have a boat pull me out?" and "can I stay relaxed and not panic in the water?". There is extra pressure because I will have several family members there to watch and the company I work for is sponsoring the event. How's that going to look if I drown in front of my family or have to get pulled out of the water in front of coworkers? The mind can be cruel.

My plan is to watch a YouTube videos on swimming techniques daily hoping to train my mind what good technique looks like. There are some great Total Immersion videos that teach you the little intricacies of swimming easier and more relaxed. I have written some positive affirmations to help build my confidence and force out the negative thoughts, and I will continue to work on relaxation, confidence, and skills in the few training swims that I have remaining. I know that I can do this, I just have to relax in the water and take my time getting through the swim one stroke at a time.

The start of my swimming affirmations

If you are really bored, this is my swim intervals video that I sent into the coach.

This is what swimming is supposed to look like.


  1. What you are talking about are all the same thoughts I have every time I get in the pool so I know exactly how you feel. You have a great action plan and I believe you are going to be pleasantly surprised on how well you do in the water! Congrats again on this challenge!

  2. ugh, swimming is so tough....i also feel like i make progress REALLY slowly in the pool and it's hard to see. sigh. keep plugging away!