Tonight I did a quick 30-minute set at the lap pool at the Pro Sports Club in Bellevue, WA, not far from where I work. As I was exiting the pool I heard...
Random guy at the pool: "Dude! You swim fast!"
I did the proverbial look-over-both-shoulders before responding...
Me: "You think I'm fast?"
I have been accused of many things in my life, being fast in the pool is not one of them. I was sharing a lane with this random guy, a lane that was clearly marked "Slow," as opposed to the "Medium" and "Fast" lanes (should be self explanatory).
Random guy: "Yeah, man. You are a lot faster than most folks I see here at the pool."
At this point I'm thinking I'm dealing with one of the many "Resolution Athletes" that turn up at the Club between Jan 1st and Feb 20th every year. This guy has on a speedo, nice goggles, and a blue swim cap (most R.A. N00bs don't bother with swim caps).
Me: "Really? How long have you been coming here?"
RG: "About 15 years. I swim about 3 times a month, that's probably why you haven't seen me. I don't remember seeing you here before."
OK, at this point I am completely flummoxed. This guy claims to be a regular at the pool, doesn't recognize me, and he thinks I'm fast. This does not compute. The fastest folks in the pool can double my speed. What is he smoking?
Me: "A friend of mine said my swim pace resembles a freight barge. I'm just trying to get from one end of the pool to the other."
RG: "Well, you kept catching up to me."
Which was true, he wasn't going very fast. This is where I decide to pump up his ego by inflating my actual performance.
Me: "Yes, but I was doing speed intervals."
This, of course, was a total lie. It was my first time in the pool since last October and I was by no means performing well.
Me: "The times that I caught you I was doing my fast laps. Don't worry, each time I caught up I needed the break."
That part was not a lie. Each time I caught up to him I welcomed the chance to take it slow in his wake.
RG: "Keep it up man! You'll be winning the masters races in no time! You'll certainly beat me! I never win those @#$! things."
At this point he took off on another lap and I called it a night and went home.
Fast, indeed! Maybe I'll break 8 minutes in my 400m Sprint races this June!
FYI- I did about 800m tonight: 100m warm up, 400m with swim paddles and a leg float (stroke workout), and 300m continuous crawl-stroke. Not a long workout, but not bad for my first swim in several months.