Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Open Water Swimming = Adventure

I recently had the opportunity to be interviewed for a project at the American West Center at the University of Utah. The Great Salt Lake Oral History Project is seeking to document current experiences with the Great Salt Lake. In my interview with Becky Lloyd, the word that I found kept coming up when I was talking about swimming was “adventure”.

For me, that’s what open water swimming is all about. Sure, it’s fun to see how fast and how far you can go, but the big draw for me has been swimming in new places and in new conditions.

It was Gordon and I seeking adventure that got us out to swim at the Great Salt Lake for the first time. That experience is what solidified our desire to bring back the historic race from Antelope Island to Black Rock.

My most memorable swims are not the ones where I swam fastest, but where I experienced new things. I think often about the year the big storm came through during the Deer Creek race. I had so much fun riding the swells and getting rained and hailed on.

Open water swimming is about a lot of things: endurance, being out in nature, pushing yourself to your limit, adapting to new conditions, etc. But at the heart of it all, at least for me, is adventure.

In an effort to help the club seek out new open water adventures, we have created the SLOW Check-Off Challenge. Basically, it is a series of 16 open water related challenges to be completed throughout the year, with an emphasis on trying new things and getting involved with the club. We encourage you to participate and hope that you will have many new adventures along the way.

Details about the SLOW Check-Off Challenge can be found on our website: