Monday, September 06, 2010

Suiting Up

I have not worn my wetsuit since Ironman Wisconsin, almost exactly one year ago. This upcoming weekend is the Nautica Malibu Triathlon, and since the water is currently 59 degrees I thought it would be a good idea to make sure my wetsuit still fit. I also wanted to remember what it was like to swim in a wetsuit. I planned on hitting the beach for Labor Day.

Now as you may recall, I got a 4-inch tear in my wetsuit the morning of Wisconsin. And in the back of my mind for the past year, I've thought "I should fix that." Well of course I never did. So Monday morning I threw a bunch of safety pins into my wetsuit and was on my way. I wasn't trying to make the suit waterproof, I just wanted to prevent the tear from spreading any farther.

Well, it wasn't my brightest idea. I drove to the beach, put on the wetsuit and headed towards the water. While walking along the sand, one of the pins came undone and started poking me in the back with every step. Ouch. I pulled that pin out and just hoped the others would stay in place.

It was an odd day at the beach. There was a surfing section which was packed, and the swim area was pretty much empty. Surfers and triathletes don't usually mix well, so I kind of went alone in the swim section. Now then, it's not a good idea to swim by yourself, so I pretty much never went out over my head, which meant I was constantly in the surfline. Basically, I probably did a total of 10 strokes and the rest of the time just stood there shivering in the water.

I have some neoprene cement so I finally patched up the tear but I have no idea if it will hold or not. I won't know until race day. I'll probably slap some duct tape over it for extra strength. I assume the wetsuit swimming will just come back to me (it's not a long swim), but the one thing I know for sure is that I'm going to be cold.


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