Find Your Limits.

“One finds limits by pushing them”- Herbert Simon

I am not a swimmer. I have said it before. It’s not that I can’t swim, I can do the majority of the strokes in a pretty satisfactory manner, it’s just not my strongest sport. For that reason, I tend to shy away from swimming workouts.

After my 10k on Sunday morning, my legs were hurting. They didn’t hurt like lifting sore, just achy sore, like I ran 6.2 miles or something! Needless to say, a few days away from running were necessary. Yesterday, I opted for an active recovery day with a hot yoga class in the evening. It loosened up sore muscles and got my heart rate up a little.

Today, I wanted another, no-impact workout to rest the joints just one more day, so I opted for the pool. During the weekend, Anders kept going on and on that I would not be able to swim a half a mile in any less than half an hour. He said it takes him less than 15 minutes to complete the task. Now, I know he is a dolphin, but I was pretty sure I could do it in less time than he said. At the time, I had never gone for a swim longer than a few laps. A half mile in the pool is 33 lengths or 16.5 laps.

Because I was sure it would take me less than 30 minutes to complete and I wanted a longer cardio workout than that, I decided on 3/4 of a mile rather than settle for 1/2 mile. Good idea right? Especially since I have never completed a 1/4 of a mile. Why not?

Conversation between Anders & I

Conversation between Anders & I

How else am I supposed to test my limits? Unless I push myself and do things I am uncomfortable with, I may never know what I can truly do. What’s the fun in that? Pushing to my limits (or what I think they are) is the only way I can grow and exceed them.

I decided that 50 lengths (3/4 of a mile) would likely be somewhere near my limit and set off this afternoon to test it out. I expected, based on Anders’ prediction, that it would take me around 45 minutes to complete, but obviously I wanted to prove him wrong.

All Ready To Swim.

All Ready To Swim.

I am happy to say I was able to complete the entire 50 lengths in about 33 minutes–without stopping. So much for that being a limit! It was tough, but I probably could have kept on going. But how was I to know unless I tried? And that is really the point: unless you try something out, you never know what you can do. Sometimes you may fail, but so what? It’s something to shoot for next time.

So once again:

“One finds limits by pushing them”- Herbert Simon

Go push yourself. Find your limits. Then exceed them!

Enjoy!

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