Today is June 24th, which means that I am one month away from my July 24th Catalina crossing. It seems like it has been a long time since I decided to undertake this challenge, but also that it has come up very quickly. I have two more weeks of heavy training before I begin to taper my yardage in preparation for my crossing. I am very excited for my swim as well as super grateful to all the people that have helped me get this far.
Today was a 10-mile day for me, combining an 8 mile morning ocean swim with a 2 mile pool swim in the afternoon. Natalie, our kayaker Amy, and I headed down to the Marina Del Rey jetty at 5am to begin our swim. The water was colder than expected but calm to begin with, despite a high surf advisory. After a somewhat rocky start, we swam north with a slight current assist and mild to moderate chop. After passing the Venice breakwater we ran into our friend Chris and he joined us for the next mile, setting a speedy pace for Natalie and me. We said goodbye to Chris at the Tower 26 buoy and continued towards the fog obscured pier.
At the pier, we turned against the current and headed back to our starting place. The first half of the return trip was pretty uneventful, except for some large waves that threatened to knock us off course. When we passed the Venice breakwater again, we were faced with chop from every direction, as waves bounced off the rocks and rebounded back at us. Natalie and I were made uneasy by the waves, but Amy did an admirable job navigating the conditions.
Though I had had some difficulty finding my rhythm for the majority of the swim, I felt very strong for the last mile and would have liked to continue if there was time. We completed the 8 mile course, feeling strong. I returned to the pool in the afternoon to bring my grand total for the day up to 10 miles. I look forward to the next month of training and cannot wait to continue in the adventure.