Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Make a Splash: Swimming and Kick Chats

Since my high intensity exercise days are behind me and my aching feet are making my daily walks less enjoyable, I was desperate to find something else to keep me busy.  Thankfully, my girl M. had a great pool and loved the idea of starting a new swim routine with me.  Since I have never been much of a swimmer (despite my years of teaching swim lessons, ironically) the only way I could think to start my new swim career was by "kick chatting".  My non-bio sister, KK's mom (my second mother), was a dedicated kick chatter and actually introduced me this lovely activity.  I decided this was where M. and I should start.  Thankfully she even agreed to continue the hunt for kick boards since I kept coming up empty handed.  After four stores, she finally snagged two for us, thanks M!

As soon as we got into the pool I felt great.  All the weight I gained just disappeared and I felt a little more like myself.  I decided I needed to take this glorious opportunity and kick it up a notch.  I took control of the workout and started us with a warm up, a nice jog in the shallow end.  I was immediately overcome with joy as I started doing high knees and kicking up my jog to more of a run/sprint.  Oh yeah!

After five minutes of high intensity running, we headed to the deep end for 5 minutes of "egg beater" water treading.  I wanted us to get those legs and arms moving!  After we had made some serious waves, it was back to the shallow end to grab our boards (catch our breath) and start out kick chat session.


We started with a nice 100 of flutter kick (a total of four pool lengths).  We did our best to make small talk while we did it, but I am no swimmer and was quickly out of breath and embracing the endorphins flowing through my body.

Next, we did a 100 of breast stroke (froggy kicks).  Then we did an additional 100 of breast stroke kicks, but this time alternating sides to get maximum work on both legs.  I made sure to remind M. (and myself) to keep those arms extended, abs engaged and legs straight and tight with toes pointed; we wanted to put in maximum work here!

Now that our legs were really on fire, it was time to get serious with a 100 of butterfly kicks (or mermaid kicks as I like to call them).  This is where it gets rather difficult since you have to keep your legs totally together and kick in one smooth motion.  Needless to say, this takes awhile, but ooooohhh how it burns so good!

We finished off with some backstroke kicking (which proved to be a bit trickier since the kick boards had to go above and behind our heads). But, we got the hang of it, soaked our hair and finished off another 100.

Since we were already fully in the water, we just decided to lose the kick boards and really push ourselves...we decided to just swim.  For some reason I do not have water lungs and free style literally leaves me breathless after one lap.  I took it slow and steady making sure to regulate my breathing (as to not interrupt the boys) and knocked out a 50 (two pool lengths). We then followed it up with a 50 breast stroke and a 50 backstroke.

We were a mere 5 minutes away from swimming an entire HOUR!  The time flew and I was feeling totally exhausted. We decided to end the workout with another short tread session, this time hands OUT of the water.  Oh yeah! This is what I was talking about, take THAT walking, there is a new workout in town baby...I was making a SPLASH!

We cooled down, made our way back to the shallow end and prepared to exit the pool.  Our hour long session had left us pretty tired (and burned a ton of calories!).  As we made our way out of the pool, I noticed my legs were like jelly..the same feeling I had when hopping off my spin bike after one of my crazy classes....I just about teared up with joy!

Thank you M. for the great opportunity, I am so excited to keep it going with you!  Are you a swimmer?  Do you love to kick up your water workouts too?  Have any tips for this non swimmer?

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