Midnight Swim

It’s after 1am as I write this, and I’m gonna try to keep this short so I can go to bed soon, because it’s been a long day.  The main thing that needed to be checked off my to-do list today was the finishing of some work for a little freelance gig I have, and my plan was to have it done by 6pm.  Well, thanks to both my underestimation of the time needed to complete the task and my ability to be easily distracted by things like the internet and television, I wasn’t finished by 6pm.  I didn’t finish until just after 11pm.

I was tired when 11pm rolled around, but all I could think about as I finished up my work was how I hadn’t exercised today.  And I had really wanted to exercise today.  On Saturday, I had gotten a 3-day free guest pass to the new 24 Hour Fitness in my part of town (read all about it here).  I didn’t use it on Sunday, as I went running with my cousins, and if I didn’t use it on Monday, well, that’d be a waste of a 3-day free guest pass!

Luckily for me, this 24 Hour Fitness location is, like its name suggests, open 24 hours a day.  It was around 11:20pm when I threw some stuff in a bag and headed down to my car.  In forty minutes, it’d be midnight, and my 3-day free guest pass would expire.  It was just after 11:33 when I walked into 24 Hour Fitness.  It was 11:37 when I entered the pool area.

Yep, it was time for a midnight swim!

It’s been nearly a month since my last swim – when I swam with my sister at her YMCA in Colorado – and the pool was the thing I was most excited to try out during my free few days at 24-Hour Fitness.  The pool I normally use in Los Angeles is outdoors, and for most of the summer I avoided it during the day, as it got so freakin’ hot, so having access to an indoor pool was a rarity.

There was an open lane waiting for me, so I got in and started swimming my normal pool warm-up: 200 yards free, 200 yards IM, 200 yards kick, 200 yards pull, 200 yards IM.  It seemed like a fast pool, which is to say I felt fast swimming in it.  What makes a pool fast is hard to pinpoint; it’s different for everyone and usually stems from a combination of water temperature, depth, and turbulence (or lack thereof), but I felt good in it, and that’s what matters.  I felt surprisingly good, in fact – I walked in the door feeling sluggish and tired, and wondering if I’d be able to make it all the way through a workout at this late hour, but those thoughts went away as soon as I hit the water.

As I was completing my warm-up, I started thinking about what I would do next.  This is when the long day took its toll.  Even though I have a bunch of different types of sets that I like to do, none of them seemed appealing.  I realized I didn’t want to think.  I just wanted to swim.  So after my warm-up was over,  I did 2 x 500 yards – that’s 2 x 20 lengths of the pool, without stopping.  I went at a good pace – aiming for about 70% exertion, and had the theme music from The Amazing Race stuck in my head.

After I finished those two 500s, I warmed down with an easy 100 breaststroke, and called it a night.  2100 total yards, completed in about an hour, including a few minutes in the hot tub at the end.

My eyes are now really heavy and I’m seconds away from letting my head hit my pillow, and when that happens, I’ll be glad I got my workout in for the day!

Keep it up, David!

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5 Responses to Midnight Swim

  1. Kari says:

    I’m impressed! :) Swimming is so much harder than any other exercise I do. I don’t get to the pool nearly enough. Thanks for the nudge.

  2. Andie says:

    Keep it up, indeed! Swimming challenges me like no other exercise. Right when I started going back to the gym on a regular basis, I swam, and while I think I did 3 laps (up & back is a lap, yes?), it is possible I did 4. I was out of breath, bright pink, and exhausted for days. It is so awesome that you can swim for that long.

    • David says:

      It’s fantastic that you’re willing to try new forms of exercise! Swimming is something that requires a lot of practice, but it’s worth it. Keep it up!

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