Much of my first 18 years of life revolved around one thing. Swimming. At eight years old I joined the summer swim team and fell in love with the sport. At age eleven, I joined a competitive swim team that trained all year round so while most of my friends played soccer or basketball, I was always at the pool. I swam competitively all the way through high school and when I was at my peak, I was training 2 - 3 hours a day, 5 days a week. I loved the challenge, the discipline and the camaraderie of it all. I loved the feeling before a race. I'd be standing on the pool deck, my heart pounding with adrenaline and my mind totally clear and focused. And there's nothing like the feeling of diving into a clear, cold, and calm pool to start a race. It's quiet and still, you're gliding effortlessly through the water until you break the surface and BAM, the race is on! It was so much fun and I'm so grateful I had the opportunity to do it.
I left competitive swimming after high school. Occasionally I'd swim some laps, but I focused on other things. In the last month, however, I've gotten back into the water and I have to say that it feels really good. There's a familiarity and comfort when I'm in the pool. My body knows exactly what to do and it's fun. I am ridiculously out of shape, but I'm so glad I've gone back.
As I enter back into the world of swimming I'm noticing a few things that I thought I'd share:
1. In order to make any changes in life, you to take action. For a long time I thought about going back to the pool, but thinking about it didn't improve my fitness. If I want to actually do that, I literally have to dive in and do it. Good metaphor don't you think?
2. It's easy to compare where I am now with my swimming, with how I used to be at 18 years old. There's a part of me that really wants to get back to that level of fitness and speed and I want to be there, NOW! What I realize however, is that getting back to that level is a process. It's a process that will take some time and commitment. It won't happen overnight, but I know it can happen.
3. Just like getting back in shape in the pool will take time and commitment, starting on the journey to restore any aspect of health is also a process. It starts with diving in and it unfolds over time. It takes commitment and a willingness to participate.
4. I think it's amazing that, just like how I feel comfortable and at ease in the pool, our body feels comfortable and at ease with healing. It knows exactly what to do. Complete wellness is our natural state and deep down our body knows this. When we give it what it needs, all we have to do is trust that it will heal and return to balance. And there's no doubt in my mind that it will.
So stayed tuned for updates on my swimming adventure. I'm diving in and seeing where it takes me, one length of the pool at a time. What about you?