Related: 40x40 List
Dates completed: Wednesday, March 4; Friday, March 6; and Saturday, August 15
Until around age 14, I swam almost everyday. Whether it was with my cousins at Lake Madison, South Dakota; competing on the Sheldon, Iowa swim team; or hanging out at friends' pools, I loved being in the water.
A lot of forces likely came between me and my love of swimming but the timing of my disinterest in being in a swimsuit indicates that body image issues most definitely played a significant role. That makes me incredibly sad for my past self. Because part of my goal for this 40x40 was to stretch myself and to spend time out of my comfort zone, go swimming made the cut. I also want to return to the water for fun and exercise. After all, I live in Minnesota and am surrounded by it!
In March 2015, Scott and I spent a week in Puerto Rico. It was our first vacation in the Caribbean and it was wonderful. I hadn't swam in the ocean (or sea) since a childhood vacation to Delaware. The mix of waves/undertow, sand, and salt put me into a dreamlike state and casts a spell making me forget all of the creatures sharing the water with me. I'll admit it - I have a slight fear of getting bit, stung, or generally touched by another living thing in the water. This is why I have a hard time taking advantage of the 10 billion Minnesota lakes. That said, it's clearly not a paralyzing fear since I was able to go on a couple of swims while in Puerto Rico - once in Rincón and once in Luquillo. Read all about our Puerto Rican adventure.
Scott and I walked by the Webber Natural Swimming Pool several times during its construction. Billed as the first public natural swimming pool in the United States, uses plants and natural microbes to purify the water. I knew that even though I'd technically met my 40x40 goal while in Puerto Rico that I'd want to check out this pool when it opened.
We chose a great day for our first visit - it was 91° and the humidity level of a Florida swamp. The water was the perfect temperature for a relaxing float. Scott didn't join me for a swim so the 15 minutes I spent by myself swimming or wading around each of the pools was enough time.
Some things to know before you go:
There was a short line when we arrived and when we left. I guess the length of the line can vary but be prepared for a bit of wait.
Admission into the pool doesn't cost anything but you have to get a wristband - white if you're swimming and yellow if you're not. Upon leaving, the pool staff cut off your wristband.
No traditional changing rooms
I made a rookie mistake and thought that changing at the swimming pool would be no big deal. I guess it isn't if you like changing in a bathroom stall with a toilet flushing constantly. Next time I'll go with my swim suit already on and plan on leaving with it on.
Shower before swimming
I am pretty sure you're supposed to do this anywhere you swim but it's mandatory to use the showers on the pool deck before entering the pool. There are two buttons - the top for your head/body and the bottom for your feet.
The next swimming related adventure I want to try is Aqua Zumba! Because..."just add water and shake" is exactly what I need more of in my life.
The Nivens Family