Today I headed back to Aquatic Park to meet a group of swimmers for a 2 hour swim. They are also training for marathon swims and it was fun to bring our common goals together in such a beautiful place. We met up at 6:30 and decided to swim in circles around the cove. Part of the motivation to swim in circles rather than leave the cove was to create boredom and learn how to cope with it mentally.
We swam out to the cove opening and then turned left to follow wall around to the beach, where we turned and swam back to the front of the club. Each lap was about one mile and we did four, for a total of four miles. On the first lap, I sprinted to get warm and keep up with the guys. One nice thing about the group was that there one guy who was similar to my speed, so we swam together around the course. On the second and third laps, I really found my pace and the cold water even sort of felt good. I was enjoying myself and felt smooth and fluid as we swam around the course. I saw a jellyfish float below me and thought I felt it sting me, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as the jellies I saw during Catalina, so I just kept swimming.
I asked one of the swimmers whether jellyfish were common in the cove and he said not really, so I was surprised to see several more throughout our swim. On the fourth lap, my hands started to claw up, but I still felt pretty warm as long as I kept moving. We arrived back at the club and I was very grateful to go warm up inside. Overall, this was a good training swim to test my cold tolerance and I am happy that I could do it. The swimming community here in San Francisco is so incredible and I am very grateful for the amazing training opportunities they have given me.