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The Bay is Too Small

I've been swimming solely in Avila Bay for 9 weeks now and the bay keeps getting smaller and smaller. The same old buoy route is becoming predictable. The sprint from buoy 4 to the end of the Avila Beach Pier is familiar. The rounding of the pier to the creek mouth is old hat. I need to mix this up... Even the wind chop, swell surges, and swirling around the pier is becoming second nature.

Workouts for the Week of May 18 - 24, 2020


Monday, May 18

I decided to start the week off with a run. I did my usual run and it felt much better than the previous weeks. My body is starting to adapt to running again.


Total Distance: 3.3. miles

Total Time: 40 minutes, 7 seconds


I also did 30 minutes of stretching.

Tuesday, May 19

I didn't have a ton of time to swim today. I head out to the shoreline quickly but certainly didn't punch through the surf quickly. It took a solid 6 or 7 minutes to get past the 4-5 foot closed out sets. I finally caught a break between the sets and sprint to buoy 1 and made an immediate left. I quickly found myself dodging kelp patches. Ick. After a couple of minutes of more and more kelp, I turned toward the end of the pier to get away from the reef buoy. The kelp was less frequent, but still an obstacle.


Once past the end of the pier the kelp subsided and by the time I got further toward the north-side buoy line there was almost no kelp. I ended up swimming laps around the north buoys to get time and distance. I enjoyed rolling in on the big waves to the shoreline. Once at the shower, I had a suit full of sand to rinse off.


Gosh the sky was exceptional today.

Wednesday, May 20

I had meetings all morning so I didn't get to go swimming. I did, however, play tennis with my friend, my son, and my son's girlfriend (who is a top-rated Division 1 NCAA player). I got creamed.

Thursday, May 21

As soon as my morning meeting wrapped up at 9 am, I head to the beach and was toes in by 9:40. The water was chillier than it has been and I missed the slightly warmer water. I head straight out the pier, where I encountered Tom. He was just finishing his swim. I turned to buoy 4 and had a very quick swim with the incoming tide and south swell. I did have a GPS glitch through there, but the running time from the end of the pier to buoy 4 was at least 30 seconds faster than my typical time.


After that, I just swam the fortune cookie with an extra trip out the pier. The water wasn't as clear today and I was glad that the kelp had cleared.

Friday, May 22

Knowing that I had a weekend of swimming ahead of me, I decided to do a run today. Honestly, it was my best run since my injury. My son and his girlfriend gave me a vibrating foam roller for my birthday a while ago and I've been using it on my feet and calves. Boy howdy does it make a difference! I felt light on my feet and had good flexibility and movement through my feet, Achilles, and calves. I did have a little niggle in my left knee, but I think that is from the sudden increase in walking I've had the past 2 weeks.


Total Distance: 3.3. miles

Total Time: 38 minutes, 12 seconds

Saturday, May 23

I was finally able to meet up with a couple of my fellow swimmers. They had shared that they wanted to swim a little longer than usual - around 2 miles. I was glad for that because I, also, wanted a long swim. I had planned on staying in the water an extra 30 minutes to get 3 miles in, but I was cold! The water was around 53F and there were several spots where it dropped to 51F or less. My teeth hurt. So, 2 miles was good enough for the day.


Tom quickly dropped us once we left the Avila Pier. Neil and I are almost exactly the same pace and we kept meeting up at rendezvous points. It was interesting because we each swim the currents differently, with one of us going wide or cutting in tight, but we always ended the segment at the same time.


Also, too much loose kelp for my liking. We also had a baby sea otter parked midway along the buoy line. He wasn't going to move for us, so we swam wide.

After my swim I went on a beautiful 7.5 mile hike up the mountain near my house. The wind was pretty stiff, though it kept me cool under the afternoon sun. Needless to say, I slept very well.

Sunday, May 24

I haven't had a rest day yet this week. No matter. I'm getting out there! One other co-swimmer out there with me today, but the swimming lanes were populated! I was pretty knackered from my swim yesterday, so I took it slow and easy. We logged almost an hour and it was really chilly. My hands and feet were really feeling the cold today and my wetsuit is getting loose on me. It took me a while to warm up after the swim. I was really glad to jump in today.

Totals for the Week


Finally, a week with over 10,000 yards. It is hard to get the weekly yardage up doing only ocean swims.


Total Swim Distance: 11,034 yards

Total Swim Time: 3 hours, 41 minutes


Total Run Distance: 6.6 miles

Total Run Time: 1 hour, 18 minutes

Oh look! Water! Let's swim in it.

The water draws me in like a moth to light. What is the temperature? What is the visibility? How far is it to swim across? It is time to find out.

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© 2020 by SLOGoing.

San Luis Obispo, California

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