In preparation of my upcoming triathlon in September I've just signed up for the Lake Tahoe Open Water Swim in August. And I am terrified.
I have no reason to be terrified. I love swimming and have spent many hours in my youth swimming across Wisconsin lakes as my family would paddle next to me in our canoe. We'd go camping over Labor Day weekend when the Wisconsin end of summer would bring 40 degree days and 20 degree nights and I'd layer up in tights and long sleeve shirts over my swimming suit and jump in the water, eager to get that last lake swim in before the water froze over.
So why am I terrified? Its a 1.2 mile swim (a little under 2000 meters). I'm already swimming close to that in the pool and this swim is about five months away. I'm terrified of the cold, I'm terrified of freaking out from being in open water for the first time in close to a decade, I'm terrified of being the slowest one out there. But I'm not out there to swim fast - its about the experience and getting back into it. And I'm not going to freak out, because what is there to freak out about? Its going to be amazing! And I get to swim in this beauty:
I've been debating back and forth whether I should sign up for this swim. I knew I needed the open water practice before the tri, I knew I would love to swim in Lake Tahoe, I knew I'd be prepared. But I was afraid. That fear pushed me to sign up. I asked myself,
Other than fear, what is stopping me?
The answer: nothing. I knew I wouldn't be put in harm's way by swimming this event and I knew only good things would come out of it.
What would you do if you weren't afraid? Think about it - then do it.
For more inspiration on moving past fear, check out this great Tumblr link.