Friday is a big day….I’m going to the YMCA and see if I can swim! Now, if I jump off a boat in the middle of a lake, I can stay up, but I need to be able to go back and forth for 250m so I need to learn how to do a real swimming stroke. I’m not nervous because it’s in a pool and the worst thing that happens is I just dog-paddle, but it will be interesting to see how far I can get. I suspect it won’t be too far this time, but I have all the way until May to improve.
It was because of a swimmer that I ultimately started working with triathletes. Back in 2000 I had written a book titled How to Be Pain Less…A Beginner’s Guide to the Self-Treatment of Muscle Spasms (how’s THAT for a long title!). An Ironman triathlete named Jerry Trump, from the state of Washington, found the book and was able to release a major spasm in his calf muscle that was hitting him at just three miles, bringing him down to the ground in pain. He was thrilled when he immediately was able to add miles without pain. He then emailed me to see if there was anything I could tell him to resolve pain in his shoulder muscle (infraspinatus) that was causing him to only swim 300m before having to stop (…now, I’d LOVE to be able to swim 300m…but, I’m not an Ironman triathlete).
I told him which treatment to do in the book and he emailed me back “ouch, ouch, ouch…I found the tow-rope for the QEII!” but he was quickly back to swimming again, and since swimming is his most powerful sport, that was a very important piece to his race-training.
It was Jerry that had me start posting answers to questions that were put onto the Ironman Utah forum, and also on Mile41.com (at least I think that was the website). He was the person responsible for me ultimately writing The Pain Free Triathlete, and he was also the amazing artist who created all of the beautiful trigger point charts that are still in each of my books.
Jerry moved on in life and I’ve lost communication with him. I wish I could tell him that I’m going to learn how to swim. Maybe he’ll see this blog and I’ll hear from him again. If you know Jerry, please tell him for me.
BTW, I’m going to be revising the Pain Free Triathlete with Stacey Richardson, so while the current book is still important to beginner triathletes, the new book will have more techniques in it and will also have an advanced beginner and intermediate training program. I need to sell out all of the remaining Pain Free Triathlete books that I have on stock, so the price has been cut from $39 to $15. They make a great present to anyone who is new at triathlon, and with a 60% discount, they also make a great present for YOU!
Wishing you well,