Thursday, June 11. 2009
5:30 AM, Simonton Lake, Indiana
There is a group of us that meet early in the morning before work to swim in the lake.
I have to admit, the first few times I pulled up to the lake in the dark and slowly eased into the dark water, with only a few distant house lights as guides, it was a bit unnerving. It is as though the water itself is black liquid emptiness.
In a way, this can help you focus on your form. As soon as you get into your breathing rhythm, there are no distractions. Siting is easy as you focus far across the lake to to other side where the green light is next to two larger lights. After a few minutes, you are gliding effortlessly across the empty, quiet calm.
At Simonton Lake, if you swim the perimeter, you will always be able to stop and stand if you want to to. For those of us swimming across the lima bean-shaped lake in a tangent to try to make it to the other side in the shortest distance, there will be no opportunities to stand once under way. It's just as well. Why break your stride once you settle into a pace.
As the dawn slowly comes up, and you are pulling through the clear water, gradually you can start to see your hands underwater, pulling back the bubbles. The light show begins and one by one the houses and trees emerge in your peripheral vision as the birds sing off the sandman.
Our morning swims are just a glorious way to start the day. It's exercise and therapy all in one. And it is never the same. There is always something new to see.