Sunday, February 24, 2008
The Mexican Invitational Swim Competition!
This weekend was the first competition of the year for the "Liga Masters" tournament. I put the items I thought I would need for the competition in my bag and our family traveled to the competition! I arrived and suited up for warm-ups. During warm-ups I realized that there were quite a few people there... then more came... and more... then the TV AZTECA television crews and spectators... and official looking people.
Upon asking why everyone looked so serious I was told that this was the first competition of the year - the Mexican Invitational! The entire meet was a scheduled five and a half (5 1/2) hours long! I was swimming with people from all over Mexico! Professionals, Semi-Pros, Young and Old alike - and then there was me... a 33 year old mother of four who started this whole thing just to get some exercise!
Sufficed to say, at that point I decided to just forego the entire competitive spirit and have fun... because there was NO WAY I was going to stand a chance against any pros! I was scheduled to swim the 50m freestyle, backstroke and freestyle relay. The pictures you see are my first heat (50m freestyle) and I am in lane three. I actually placed first in all my heats! Never before in my life has tenths of a second mattered to me... unless it was running a child into a restroom... but my times were (to the tenths of a second) - Freestyle (50m) 48.06 seconds & Backstroke (50km) 58.34 seconds but during my leg of the relay freestyle (50 m) I clocked 47.00 seconds! My category of swimmers (ages 30-35) was quite a competitive category and I placed 8th in my freestyle time - but I placed 3rd in my backstroke and actually got a medal! Bronze, of course!
I have to tell you that no one was as surprised as I was - my coach kept motioning me to come across the pool and my teammates were waving excitedly (the pro who doesn't need air, Monica swam her 50km races in just over 30 seconds! - Luckily she is older than I - so she wasn't in my category!) I walked across the pool, a bit dizzy from exerting myself during the race and they told me the great news... I had placed! It was exciting standing on the platform with the other swimmers and receiving the medal - it was about as close as this mom will get to the Olympics! Just goes to show "You never know what you can do - until you try!"
Here is a 'newspaper article' - the writing and artwork are both by our Ladybug!