the day's are getting shorter... gotta get in these swims while we can!

I haven’t been to the beach since I got home from all my recent travels and I’ve been wanting to go pretty bad. At lunch I made a run up to San Luis Obispo to hit the triathlon store for some swim supplies for the weekend. On the way up and back I had killer views of the ocean from the freeway and I really just wanted to park and hop in! The wind was blowing pretty good out there and I could see all kinds of whitecaps brewing. I followed my two passes of the ocean up with a Symposium from 1-5 in a meeting room that literally hangs over the ocean. Generally if I’m invited to a meeting at this place while the sun is up I go :) I got there a little early and grabbed some iPhone video of the view from the deck just outside where our event was going on…

Nice right? As soon as we hit 5 I had to split and hop in the truck to make it to Avila for my Wednesday night swim. Niel was out with some work but I figured someone else would show so that I could get in a dip. Once I got to the staircase I found Ryan and Pete… after waiting around it turned out we were the whole group.

Pete and Ryan out in the water

I got deck changed real quick, grabbed my goggles and we plotted the beginning of a route out on our way to the water. There were some seals playing and birds circling off the left hand side of the pier so I figured we’d start on the right hand side and see where things go from there.

I joked on the way into the water that since we had no official reading (usually niel is in charge of that) that I was going to assume it was 72. It wasn’t funny anymore once my feet actually got wet! Holy crap was it cold today. I checked the nearest ocean buoy when I got home and it was reading 53!!! It’s normally warmer closer to shore so we were probably anywhere between 53-55. It hurt… I wasn’t ready for it today. Getting in was a struggle. Eventually the other guys decided to take off while I tried to acclimate. Once they we about 25m out I just tossed myself through a wave and started to spin my arms. I got over the cold eventually, but those first 10 minutes or so were brutal today.

I'm hurting a little right here!

We swam under the pier together and then all the way down to the end of the right side of the buoy line. When we regrouped we decided things looked good and we’d make our way to the top of the pier. The wind and chop were a little bit of a factor here but not too bad. At the pier me and Ryan chatted up some guys fishing while we waited for Pete. We asked if they were catching anything and they asked if it was cold… the answer was yes to both questions. Despite the chilliness it was a gorgeous day out there… here’s a 360 degree view from 15m off the end of the pier…

Normally from here we’d aim for the end of the other side of the buoy line and then in. I decided we should retrace our original path because it would be a little longer and little different. The guys were on board so we set a course for the buoy we had just left. The swim out was good and smooth. I’m feeling a little faster in the water these days, I think all that forced time off last week at the convention was good for me.

swimming away from that last buoy

Me and Ryan were at the buoy first and messed around with my new camera a bit. He wanted some video of his stroke so we did that and I snapped a few pictures as well. While he was doing some glamor swimming we saw our first and only seal on that side of the pier for today. He sort of popped up, investigated us for a while and then disappeared never to be seen again.

Ryan and a seal checking each other out

We finished our swim by heading to the pier and then hanging a left towards the beach. Once I was out and changed I could still feel the cold on me but I wasn’t shivering. I knew I was cold though when the air conditioning in my truck felt hot at first when I started the vehicle! It took a while for me to reheat, but now that I’m thawed out I feel really good. I needed a trip to the ocean.

the beard feels much better with salt water in it

I’ll be back into the pool tomorrow for a swim in Santa Maria. I’m still working on some fundraiser action for my swim on Saturday, if you want to donate or learn more check out www.eqca.org/equalityswim/robaquatics

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