Normally I don’t believe in mornings, but marathon swim machine and sports psychologist Jen Schumacher was in the neighborhood and wanted to go for a Wednesday morning swim… who am I to say no to that? :) I got up early and headed for the beach a little ahead of the rising sun. I got there early to scope things out and get a water temp. The wind was light, not too much surf, and there wasn’t much sealife moving about. I couldn’t get a water temp reading over 50… I got 49 like 5 times in a row… but I think that was influenced a lot by the 42ish air temperature. In reality the water was probably more like 52, and although the air started cold it did warm up quite a bit in the course of our swim.

Jen and her family drove up right on time and I greeted them on the sidewalk. The rest of the Schumachers would be out running while Jen and I ventured into the ocean. We walked down to the beach, got ready to swim and then sloooowly worked our way into the water. Luckily she’s a fan of the little bit at a time method of acclimatization like I am. Eventually the waves were tall enough we didn’t have a lot of choice about it and we had to dive through and start swimming. I had already laid out the route on the beach with plans to stop at major turns to regroup. Jen is quite a bit faster than me, so she swam circles and back tracked at some of the turns while I caught up so she could keep moving and not freeze out.

Everything moved along really smoothly. The ocean was great, the scenery was beautiful, and it was just a good day for a swim. We chatted a little at each stop and took some pictures since we both had cameras on us (I’m testing out a new point and shoot!). At the tip of the pier we had to make sure and stop so Jen could add to her piers of California collection.

Once we’d swam all the way to the creek buoy we decided that we’d think about swimming under the pier since things were looking mellow enough to do so. We swam down to the last buoy, gave it one more look, decided it was a good idea and then Jen added a couple extra buoys to the swim. She wanted to swim back to the end of the buoy line on the other side which was cool with me so we set off under the pier and swam into the sun all the way to the far buoy.

Afterwards we swam it back towards the pier and then in towards the beach. I didn’t wear my GPS but by my calculations it was good for about 1.5 miles. All told a great start to the day! We were greeted on the beach by a few shocked dog walkers not expecting to see wetsuitless humans emerge from the sea while they were bundled up as if there were real winter here :) We also caught up with Jen’s mom and then the rest of the fam back up on the sidewalk. I hung around to chat for a bit but couldn’t stay too long because I had to get back to work. Hopefully we see more of Jen up here in Avila, it’s a great place for those who are marathonally inclined to hang out and get the occasional shot of barely 50 degree water!

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