This morning was the team’s first open water OCEAN swim in Santa Monica. We met at the Santa Monica Beach parking lot off the end of Ocean Park Avenue bright and early at 7am. As we were setting up our transition areas, I could already hear the waves crashing. Yes, I was nervous! We suited up in our wetsuits and walked over to the shore. Like the Long Beach swim, we were split into beginners and experienced ocean swimmers. *waves crashing*. Coach Brad gave us some pointers and described what we will be experiencing out there.
The waves were much larger than yesterday, where some of the experienced swimmers got a head start. Sure, they looked kinda small from the shore, but when you’re in the water and your head is the only things sticking out, a medium wave looks HUGE from that perspective. I tried several times diving under the waves, but I guess the wetsuits were so buoyant that I didn’t go far enough. Yes, dragged back to shore. All of a sudden I was back in shallow water. Coach had explained before the swim that there’s this part in the water that you can just get stuck if you don’t power through a few minutes under and through the water.
You have to remember that this was my FIRST ocean water swim. I wasn’t used to being under water for that long, holding my breath. There were times where I was underwater, panicking what direction I was heading, how deep I was, so when I finally surfaced, my heart was racing. After several tries, I had to go back. I didn’t even get to finish the scheduled lap, but at least now I know how it feels. We will have more chances to conquer this in the future, from Santa Monica to Manhattan Beach. Bring it!
Here’s the team after the swim!