What a perfect 4th of July. I started my morning with my first ocean swim of the year. Was feeling a bit unsetteled about the location at first but was encouraged via email by a great group of people to show up for the free swim and give it a try. There is a non-profit swimming group that i found out about (Coney Island Brighton Beach Open Water Swimmers) that has weekend swims out on Coney Island, which is really a quick trip from my house by car or subway. To date I have found no organized open water swims that are easily accessible and was thrilled to hear about this group. To find out more about them visit www.cibbows.org. The water was a reasonable 74degrees. Not optimal for me usually, but I had a new wetsuit that I needed to swim in to make sure it fit and was comfortable. I met a group of about 20 that day. Everyone had different plans, and that is perfect. I met Lisa who lives on Brighton beach and swims about every day in the ocean. Says she is the slowest in the group. Perfect I say. Looks like I found a buddy. We swam an out and back around some jetty's . Got fairly deep at points where I couldn't see the bottom but felt really calm and enjoyed the experience. On the way back there was a lot of chop, something I don't relesh, but was good to experience. After about a mile of this we decided we both wanted to swim a bit further. After an hour I was finished. Salt water gets my stomach upset and the chop was making me a bit dizzy.
So I'm really pleased to have found a solution to getting some open water training in on a regular basis. Safe environment, challenging conditions, and a great group of people. Most imprortantly the beach is only about 30 minutes away from my home. And my new Exterra Vector Pro wetsuit fit perfectly. I will no longer be afraid of jellyfish.