31 March 2007

An Honest 10 Miles

Today Paul Springer of the South End and my friends Alisa and Carla made the trek out to Lake Del Valle to do a 4 hour training swim. Paul provided the 2-person kayak and Alisa and Carla paddled for Paul and I as we swam the entire length of the lake and back again (10 miles).

The water temperature was about 60 degrees and there wasn't a cloud in the sky. Everything went smoothly after Alisa and Carla got used to kayaking for swimmers and after I found my groove swimming in fresh water.

I felt good the whole way, in fact my muscles didn't even start hurting at all until about 3 hours and 25 minutes. Then I could feel my lats, but my shoulders were still OK.

I fell asleep in the car on the way home and then again for 2 hours once I was home. When I woke up about 8 p.m. I realized that if this was the channel, I would still be swimming.

THANK YOU to Paul for providing the kayak and for being a great swim partner. Congratulations on your longest swim ever!

THANK YOU to Carla and Alisa for doing a great job as pilots and crew.

28 March 2007

Reply to An Anonymous Post

The e-mail address I use for my PayPal account is jessicaksullivan@yahoo.com

Thank you for your support.

Onward to France!

26 March 2007

Candlestick Park to Aquatic Park

On Saturday I swam 10 miles from Candlestick Park to South End Rowing Club in Aquatic Park. Duke Dahlin piloted for me, Fast Eddie, John Hathaway and Paul Springer. The water temperature was between 52-53 degrees F.

My favorite part of the swim was watching the scenery change from the industrial landscape of the Southern part of San Francisco to highrises of downtown.

My least favorite part was stopping for two ferries and a police boat.

I was a little anxious swimming under the Bay Bridge because the last time I swam under a bridge (the Golden Gate) I had to get rescued from the fast currents carrying me straight into the South tower.

I finished with pod #2 in 2 hours and 32 minutes. I felt more cold than tired, which is a good sign. I wasn't sore the next day which makes me feel like I am getting in pretty good shape.

Next Saturday: 4 hours in 63 degree water (Lake Del Valle)

THANK YOU to all of the pilots and organizers of the swim, especially Duke Dahlin, Bob Roper and Jon Meyer.

23 March 2007

Thank You Libbie

Thank you to my friend Libbie who offered her house as a place for me to nap after school before Open House last Thursday.

A few weeks ago, she took the time to turn my vision of a "Swimming to France" postcard into reality. I will use this design for the Swimming to France Benefit party at the South End Rowing Club on June 1st.

Thanks again for all of your support.

22 March 2007

Channel Fatigue Part II

The exhaustion is overwhelming. I just got to school and I have to be here for 12 more hours because of open house. My eyes are burning and starting to water. I feel like a baby who is about to cry because I just want to sleep.

14 March 2007

Channel Swimming Application in the Mail!

Yesterday after school I mailed my application and fees to the Channel Swimming Association. I am one step and $627 closer to France!

13 March 2007

Glow Stick Fashion Etiquette

Bob walked into the water at with a yelp at 5:48 a.m. and I was just seconds behind. But two days after day light savings time had taken away our sunrise swims, I wasn't close enough. Bob vanished into the dark abyss the cove and I could barely make him out as we swam to the Bad Becky Buoy. Cory was close by and I tried to keep up with her so I would have some sort of visual reference.

"Bob, you know you can't wear purple glow sticks after Day Light Savings, It is like wearing white after labor day!" I joked with Bob after we had reached the the first point in our early morning swim. He wore purple glow sticks which as not nearly as bright as the yellow and orange ones that Cory and I had attached to the straps of our goggles.

I wasn't scared, just frustrated. I couldn't see anything! It was like the blind leading the blind trying to make it across the cove. I realized that because I couldn't see anything, the only experience I was having was that of swimming. Pure swimming in the cold, dark water. My mind didn't wander because the most important thing was the task at hand, one stroke after another moving me through the water.

09 March 2007

Swimming into the Daylight

Last Thursday we jumped at 5:45 and swam into the daylight. I stayed in for 45 minutes in 52 degree water. My hands were numb and twitching by the end. Daylight savings comes 3 weeks early this year, so next week my entire swim will be in the dark. Not the pitch dark of winter, the dark of spring that is almost OK, but certainly not like the beautiful dawn swims we have been enjoying. The photos above were taken on Thursday March 8th, between 5:55 and 6:20 a.m. The first shot is of the water on the beach just before we jumped. The second photo is the moon above the cove. The third photo is an attempt at a self portrait and the last one is just a shot of the cove near the end of my swim.

I have been incredibly tired recently and feel like it has been a long, dark, cold and exhausting winter. Last night I went to bed at 5:30 p.m. and still felt like a zombie all day. I took off two workouts this week in hopes of restoring some energy to my tired body.

01 March 2007

Boat for San Diego Swim CONFIRMED!

Heather e-mailed me today to let me know that her boat connection (Andy) has confirmed that he will pilot my 6 hour swim on April 28th in San Diego. He has some ideas about the route, but the details have yet to be determined. I'll jump at 7 a.m.!

March Madness!

It's March! That means I am replacing one of my pool workouts with a bay swim and swimming longer in the bay. I convinced Bob and Cory to start our bay swims earlier. The way we see it is "dark is dark and early is early". This morning Bob, Cory, Jim and I met at 5:40 a.m. and we were in the chilly 51 degree water a few minutes later. They got out after about 25 minutes and I continued on, swimming for a total of 43 minutes. The water is still cold and will be that way for awhile. By the end of the swim, my hands and feet felt numb and it took almost 10 minutes in the shower to regain dexterity in both hands. It is difficult and somewhat comical to wash your hair with hands that you don't have full use of yet. Thanks again to my early morning bay swimming crew: Bob, Cory and Jim.