Today, I got back in the pool for the first time since December. I have found that swimming laps, while not as entertaining as biking or running, is really good exercise and not too hard on my body. One issue I had when I started swimming more last year was that my neck was getting sore from breathing during breast stroke, and I could not maintain freestyle as long as I wanted. In talking to my uncle who swims daily, he recommended using a snorkel. I could really spend some effort in learning the correct breathing techniques, but even then, I don’t think I’d be able to relax my neck as I swam. So, snorkel it is.
Luckily I don’t mind being to goofiest looking person swimming laps. Today, I got in the pool amidst a few odd glances and swam. I swam more in the time I allotted myself than I usually did when I had been swimming for a while. Not having to pick my body out of the water or rotate to breath really helped. Also, when I got winded, I could slow down and breathe as I needed which allowed me to keep swimming even while taking it slow. I put in a solid half hour and feel great for it. Tomorrow may seem a little different, but I am relishing it now.
Why does my renewed exercise merit talk on a blog about parenting? Having entered the role of father later than many, I want to be in shape and healthy as much as I reasonably can so that I can experience my children’s lives as fully as possible. Of course there are many things I have no control over, but I can take better care of the body I have. Also, I want to consistently model an active life with value placed on fitness. When I am exercising, I feel better, and my parenting reflects that. I have more patience and humor. If I don’t exercise regularly, I might just find myself in deep water.