Got your attention? Good. Ok, I really didn’t swim naked today. But I did do my first open water swim sans wetsuit which felt like swimming naked. I also had the opportunity to meet up with a blog buddy for the swim and subsequent bike ride.
Rob and I met at 8th Street Park this afternoon with plans to do an open water swim and bike ride to Millennium Park. Rob is training for his first triathlon. He is doing a mini tri for beginners as a warm up in the next week and will follow that up with his first big triathlon in August at the Millennium Triathlon.
When I got to the park, I was surprised that the guard shack was actually manned and that they were collecting an entry fee. When I first visited the park, I knew that there was a $3 entry fee but there was never anyone there to collect it. Thankfully, I actually had cash on me which is a rarity in today’s world of debit/credit cards.
I checked the water temperature and decided against using the wet suit because it was so warm. I don’t know the actual temperature but I would guess it was around 80*F.
Rob and I grabbed our goggles and headed down to the beach. It was very crowded in the shallow water with kids playing, but the lake itself was fairly empty. As we approached the water, Rob commented that, “I never thought I would be one of those guys who shows up at the beach in a speedo.” Haha. I couldn’t agree more. Thankfully we were both wearing tri shorts and not subjecting the beachgoers to an actual speedo (or if you prefer, banana hammock, sausage smuggler, or man-kini).
We headed out doing a diagonal of the lake which is about 1/3 mile. We hit the turn around point in 10:15. I was actually surprised at how well the swim went without a wetsuit. There were some cold patches in the middle of the lake but they were actually a welcome refreshment from the warm water. After the turn around, we picked up the pace a bit and did the second half in 9:45.
Overall, the swim went very well. When I got home, I checked the water temperature for my tri this weekend. It is currently 82*F and there aren’t any cool days in the near future, so it looks like I will have my first wetsuit-free race. I’m glad I got some practice in ahead of time.
After we dried off, we headed out on the bike ride. We jumped on the Kent Trail which is about a mile from the park. This took us around to Millennium Park where I was able to show Rob part of the course that he would be competing on.
Having someone to ride with really helped to push the pace. There were a few sections that were pretty windy which lowered our average, but on the straights, we were consistently hammering out 21 mph and 22 mph.
Overall, the swim and bike ride combo was a great workout. In fact, it is the first time I have done swim/bike brick rather than bike/run brick.
Off to bed now. I have a 4 hour bike ride scheduled for tomorrow and the forecast has temperatures reaching 90+ by noon, so I have to get out early.