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  #1  
Old 07-10-2011
Lawrence Lawrence is offline
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Lawrence
Default 'I can do it now'

Have you told yourself that?

I have recently had the pleasure. I'm no Shinji but the stroke feels nearly effortless and the tempo devoid of hurry. It has taken me 2.5 years to get here starting from zero, with many technical twists and turns along the way.

I feel relief more than elation, since now I hope I can have my life back. At least, the life I had but with one great extra.
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  #2  
Old 07-11-2011
forests forests is offline
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Lawrence,
Congratulations on "getting there". I, too, started from zero and was self-taught with a good dose of trial and error to get back on the right track.
Recently, I have also reached a milestone. I finally figured out how to release the tension in my forearms and shoulders, resulting in much more energy savings with no loss of speed.
On to the next pinnacle!
Steve
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  #3  
Old 07-11-2011
Scotty Scotty is offline
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Default Raise a pint for Lawrence

Congratulations Lawrence on reaching a performance and emotional milepost. Based on the number and quality of your posts, TI is a high priority in your life to which you attach considerable focus.

I'm not quite two years into TI, and am still waiting for that "ah-ha" moment. My progress is not linear, but often two steps forward and one step back. I'm a 5:30 a.m. swimmer three times a week, and at least once a month I consider quitting. But then a swimmer I have not seen for a while will stop me to tell me how much I have improved. So I persevere, taking solace in small victories.

For those of us who are wondering if and when our flawed strokes will ever morph into something picturesque, your recent epiphany offers encouragement. Celebrate with a pint and a few of your effortless laps for all of us waiting for that magic moment.
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  #4  
Old 07-11-2011
cynthiam cynthiam is offline
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Congratulations, Lawrence, it's great to hear of your accomplishment.

I laughed at your comment about getting your life back. I know what you mean - I've become a little obsessed with this swimming thing and getting to the point of being able to tell myself that I can do it.
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  #5  
Old 07-11-2011
Burger Burger is offline
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In TI basically how do you measure success personally?
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  #6  
Old 07-11-2011
Lawrence Lawrence is offline
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Thank you for all the kind replies. It was very nice to read them over my morning coffee.

Burger, I measure success according to whether I can swim in a straight line with minimal effort and maximal relaxation. As I think everyone here agrees, just as for painters, musicians, brain surgeons and plumbers, there is always room for a swimmer to improve. To my mind, however, there is nevertheless a level of core competence that is either present or absent. That is what I think I have finally attained. I now go to the pool knowing, rather than worrying whether, I can plod along lazily, breathing as I please to either side, with time to enjoy the feeling of slipping through the water and without worrying that everything is on the point of breaking down. That is what I have been aiming for, really: a stroke I can take as easily as I like so that I can enjoy the peaceful weightlessness of being in the water whenever I like.
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  #7  
Old 07-11-2011
Rincewind Rincewind is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lawrence View Post
I feel relief more than elation, since now I hope I can have my life back. At least, the life I had but with one great extra.
Congratulations!

Regarding getting your life back, I am just curious how many hours a week are you spending in the pool?
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  #8  
Old 07-11-2011
Lawrence Lawrence is offline
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Lawrence
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I estimate I averaged 90 minutes a day, every day, for at least two years. That includes crazy periods where I was going to the pool three times a day. I think, in all, I've banked 1300-1500 hours of practice in 2.5 years. When you include the travelling to and from, it adds up!

I didn't want to go on that way, frankly, but nor could I quite countenance giving up. I felt I needed to keep going until it became clear either that I would succeed or that continuing would just wear me out. I doubt I would have given it another year.
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  #9  
Old 07-14-2011
dougalt dougalt is offline
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dougalt
Default "I Can Do It Now"...each week

Lawrence,
I have been going at this TI project (for 18 months now) from the opposite end of the time/effort spectrum, with an average one-third mile, 15 minute swim approximately every other day.
Having started this TI method at age 67, with only recreational swim experiences prior to that throughout my life, I had no specific goals to achieve, other than grasping that TI was a much more sensible approach to enjoyable swimming.
Between Terry's book, a couple of the DVDs and this forum, I manage to add a new improvement each week or so, sometimes major, often times merely very subtle. Even the first couple weeks of doing nothing but trying to achieve "sweet spot" were satisfying and rewarding as each facet of this new experience was accomplished.
Thus, the TRIP has been the enjoyment all along!
My progress? Two summers ago (prior to discovering TI) I entered a couple of 1-mile ocean swims here at the New Jersey shore, primarily just to see if I could actually survive that long (lots of breast stroke, side stroke and elementary backstroke). I won the competitions for last place, requiring well over an hour each to complete the courses. However, at age 66, I was completely thrilled just to have MADE it!
Yesterday, we had gorgeous conditions at the ocean, and I would up extending my usual 1/4 to 1/2 mile swim to a complete mile. I was in no rush, was enjoying the sun, the clear water and the occasional sea life (two schools of sea skates cruised across the ocean floor, right under my path), and wound up finishing the mile in 45 minutes. Not an impressive time for 20-year old competitors, but a HUGE improvement from my 65-minute times of two years ago!
I'm loving this!
A side note: I've never done any real cardiovascular training regimens in my life, other than when in the Army 40 years ago, but a health benefit that has developed for me due to swimming for the last 4 years (2.5 years pre-TI, and 1.5 years working on TI) is that several times in the last two weeks my sitting-around-the-house heart rate has been 60 BPM.
I'm pleased.
Each week.
Sometimes even, each swim.
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  #10  
Old 07-14-2011
dougalt dougalt is offline
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PS: It is another gorgeous day here; I'm off to go play in the ocean....
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