Sunday, July 12, 2009

Alcatraz Challenge

So, I will confess that I was a bit nervous for this race. The problem wasn't the water per se; I'm a fairly competent open water swimmer. 

The issues was rather that there was so much to pay attention to in the water; directions are very specific, and they are dependent on the tides. It's a complicated swim, to say the least.

The day started early as Dave and I departed my house at 4:50 am, after a sleepless night. We got to the start at around 5:15 and boarded the boat at around 7:30 am. Once the race started there was not time to think. Within minutes we were at the start and we had to jump in without hesitation. I think I was almost too cerebral in terms of my approach, which probably cost me a few minutes in the end. What I learned, however, is that you can't concern yourself too much worrying about your time with a swim like this. I screwed up a few times and had to ask a kayaker if I was on the correct route. I finally finished is around 51 minutes, which was a bit slower than anticipated, though people on the run course were saying it was a slow swim. That said, I was just happy to touch shore. I felt good swimming wise, but that was almost an afterthought. As I said, navigating the course was a far greater challenge.

The 7 mile run went up the Presidio, all the way up an across the Golden Gate bridge and back. It was windy and hilly but I kept a steady but comfortable pace and finished in around 54 minutes or so (including a nature break) which was better than I thought I'd do.

All in all a super fun day for my boy Dave and I and I'll probably do this one again.

See and download the full gallery on posterous

Posted via email from Howard Solomon


Anonymous said...

congrats to both of you. maybe ,with that new outfit, you can swim to work. gs

Anonymous said...

nice job howie (and dave).


DM said...

Lots of fun. We'll be back.
- Dave

Payro said...

Great job, gents. I expected nothing less than complete success.

Crazymamaof6 said...

way to go! that is awesome!