I went into the ocean with Coach J on Monday farther than I’ve ever gone. I just dove right in and followed him towards the flag 200m out. I hated every single second of it.
I remember the first night I rode with him and he wanted to help adjust my bike seat. He told me he would hold my handlebars to keep it steady and I needed to… Before he got the whole sentence out I jumped up on my bike and Coach C, who was behind me, exclaimed, “Wow she really trusts us! I just looked up and there was her butt!” I laughed but in my head I was thinking, “I have no choice but to trust you guys. I can’t trust myself on this.”
So that’s what I did on Monday too. I decided to trust that everything would be fine, Coach J would get me through.
I didn’t make it the whole 200m. There was a point where the water was getting deep, the beach tinier and tinier and the saltwater was making me feel ill. I couldn’t stop the power of my worry and almost involuntarily turned back for the shore. I probably swam about 125 or 150m out two times there and back. Also I drank a lot of seawater and felt sick for hours after. As I swam back to shore Coach J did a full lap all the way out to the flag. I couldn’t get back to the beach fast enough.
Tuesday was UH Pool take two. I steered clear of Coach S and stuck with Coach K. No tears this time, close to 600m with lots of breaks and more unexpected nausea.
Wednesday KB took me to Ko’Olina on the west side for a belated birthday beach extravaganza complete with happy hour and chocolate cream pie. I swam in the ocean again, this time very close to the shore the entire time. It was much better, read: very little seawater intake and only minor panicking.
So far the only thing I can think about when I’m in the water is how much I can’t wait to get out of the water. All I want to do is get back on my bike. Thank goodness for Diamond Head Thursdays.