If I got into a pool and was told to swim to the other side, I can do it, and I can even swim back, but was I swimming? I guess it depends on how you define swimming. If it is simply to propel oneself, then yes, I was swimming! But, the way I swim is not typical. It would be a combination of freestyle with my face out of the water the entire time and a lot of splashing, a little breast stroke when I got tired, and flipping over on my back and making what my wife calls snow angles in order to move.
None of my strokes were normal.
When I was doing my Divemaster Scuba certification, one of the requirements was to swim 400m. You got various points depending on how long you took with 5 points for under 9 mins and 1 point for at least finishing. I only got the 1 point having taken around 18 mins to swim the 400m. At the time I was doing 10-mile long runs, but I was exhausted after that 400m swim.
I know this will not work for any kind of long distance triathlon. So in order to accomplish my goal, I had to take some swimming lessons to learn to swim properly so I can be more efficient in the water. I found a 2-week beginner class that started this past Monday and after just a couple days, I can now swim freestyle with side breathing.
Now, I’m not breaking any speed records and I’m tired after just 50m, but at least I have the technique down and now I just need to work on building up my endurance.