Watery Math

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Thanks so much for your support of my decision to begin training for a triathlon… that might become a Aquabike… that might become just a swim, depending on my injury status.  :)  I feel SO good after making the decision to be proactive and positive about swimming more. 


I went back to the Charlotte Aquatic Center this morning to join as a member.  The Husband and I crunched some numbers and decided it made more sense for me to join on a month-to-month basis ($36) rather than paying $5 each time I’d swim. 


That was before I realized the Aquatic Center has a GYM, too!  I’m not a huge fan of the gym, but now that I have access to one, I will definitely pump some iron a few times a week in addition to swimming.


People have asked if I think swimming is boring and the answer is… sometimes. :)  I try to keep myself occupied by counting laps and counting strokes.  I am actually really, really bad at math.  You wouldn’t believe how bad at math I am! Whenever I do a math problem out loud (like for a tip), the Husband gives me a look and says, “Are you SURE?!” And the answer is usually no.


Thus, I spend most of my time in the pool being really confused.


I think ALL forms of cardio can be a little boring if you’re by yourself, but music helps when you’re running.  I hear there are waterproof devices for your iPod – I should look into this.  But really, I think cardio is just a good time to be in your own head and zone out.  It’s not always easy to zone, but it does get easier over time!


Today, I did 1,100 yards in 32 minutes (25 yards times 44 laps!). 


I showered at the locker room and headed over to the local library to do some research for the book I’m currently writing.  Did you know it’s Library Appreciation Week?!  Holler if you love libraries!


I also checked out this book by Dara Torres.  I thought it would be good swim inspiration.


I’ll let you know if it’s good!


Dad met me at Mellow Mushroom for lunch!


I ordered a side salad to start:


And the AMAZING tempeh hoagie on whole wheat bread.  There was cheese, tempeh, onions, mushrooms, green peppers, and spinach on the inside.  Drool.


On the way out, we walked by the wine and chocolate bar Petite Phillippe and discovered the chocolate team was in the process of spraying a giant white chocolate Easter egg with blue cocoa butter.  This sucker weighs 30 pounds!


It’s going to be a robin’s egg in the end, dark blue with gold spots.  Once Easter is over, they’ll melt down the chocolate and re-use it. 


Staring at that giant chocolate egg motivated me to step in the shop for my favorite little treat, the OMG chocolate square.  It’s filled with chocolate caramel, wrapped in milk chocolate, and topped with sea salt.


Back to work I go!



  • Ann @ Day by Day April 15, 2011, 2:14 pm

    At Mellow Mushroom I always just get pizza and a salad, but I’ve always wondered how the sandwiches are. Yours looks so good! I’ll definitely get that next time.

    I like to swim too, but for some reason I feel like it takes so much more effort for me to put on a swimsuit and go to the pool than just to go for a run! I want to get back into swimming this summer.

    • Caitlin April 15, 2011, 2:16 pm

      Yea it does take a lot of mental effort! Especially to get in that cold water 🙂 Hopefully it will be easier as it gets hotter and hotter.

  • poptartyogini April 15, 2011, 2:17 pm

    i love libraries (english lit major)!! my neighborhood library is awesome. we treat it like netflix. when a new movie comes out we got on the list for it at the library. we pay enough in taxes and are determined to get our money’s worth. my husband says he’ll photocopy books if he has to!! and i’m also not so great at the math (english lit major).

  • Alison @ Around the VeggieTable April 15, 2011, 2:17 pm

    OMG I want an OMG right now!! 🙂 Your lunch looked amazing too! We don’t have a mellow around here. Sigh. I love libraries and I really want to go to one, but ours is currently under construction! Once it’s back up and running though I’ll be able to walk there from work, which is kind of exciting.

    • Lucy @ The Sweet Touch April 15, 2011, 4:36 pm

      I was thinking the same thing! Those OMG chocolates look amazing – I want to try to make them at home!

      Oh and I love libraries too. I could get lost for hours in one:)

  • Camels & Chocolate April 15, 2011, 2:18 pm

    My husband and I recently started swimming three times a week to mix up my cross-training for my next marathon, and he uses one of those iPod cases (with MY iPod!). I’m so jealous as he breezes through 2000 meters while I struggle to not go bored out of my mind doing 1000.

  • Carolyn @Eat Well. Live Well. Be Well. April 15, 2011, 2:18 pm

    I just ran out of chocolate. Damnit. I’m giving some away right now though on my blog from Endangered Species. I love their dark chocolate mint.

    Glad you joined the pool. I love swimming. It is so relaxing. I also love competing and training. You should check out your local Master’s Team.

    • Jamie April 15, 2011, 2:47 pm

      I agree with joining a master’s team! Makes swimming soooo much more fun. It kept me motivated because I knew people were expecting me to be there, and we always had hot tub social hour afterwards. My technique and strength increased dramatically. Was a very positive experience!

  • Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food April 15, 2011, 2:19 pm

    I’m so glad you’re happy about your decision! 🙂

    Sounds like a great deal at the aquatic center and you get a gym too 🙂 I know you’ll kill the tri! 🙂

  • mindy @ just a one girl revolution. April 15, 2011, 2:19 pm

    I would love to do more swimming/laps but I’m allergic to chlorine and I get sick (bronchitis, walking pneumonia) after too much time in a pool.

    • Amy April 15, 2011, 5:24 pm

      A lot of places have saltwater pools now! You could try that.

      • Amber K April 16, 2011, 12:17 pm

        I’m allergic to chlorine too! The gym I go to now used to half a salt water pool, but then they switched to chlorine. Boo! Can’t find any place near me that wants too hook a girl up 😉

  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin April 15, 2011, 2:20 pm

    Hahaha I love that the chocolate is called OMG! That was my initial reaction when I read the description of what’s inside, so it seemed appropriate. 🙂

  • Freya April 15, 2011, 2:20 pm

    Haha I do the exact same thing when swimming – but I always always lose count!! Gah.
    I’m thinking I’m going to take up swimming if my injury doesn’t heal – the pool is a 20min drive and costs me a tenner each time..but with membership, it might change! You’ve inspired me 😛
    I gotta say girl, you look STUNNING in that pic by the egg!!

  • Kim L. April 15, 2011, 2:20 pm

    I do LOVE libraries. I hardly ever buy books. I request the books I want on the ‘on-line’ library website and they send me e-mails to let me know when the books are available for pick up. The library is the place where we get all of our movies too- I’ll have to start using it like netflix as suggested above : ) I am not a swimmer- it makes me really, really tired, but I am also really bad at math. My husband bought me a tip chart so I didn’t have to guess anymore!!!

    • poptartyogini April 15, 2011, 2:24 pm

      net flixing at the library is so awesome, isn’t it?! glad to hear my husband and i aren’t the only ones.

  • Lisa April 15, 2011, 2:20 pm

    Sometimes I can lose count in the pool but for the most part I can keep track.

    I love swimming!

  • Kristen April 15, 2011, 2:22 pm

    I have a hard time with pool math…not sure why- it is usually in multiples of 25 meters for me…seems like it should be easy, but apparently not.

    Good luck with your training!!

    And now I want chocolate…

  • Amber from Girl with the Red Hair April 15, 2011, 2:22 pm

    At my pool it’s only $2.75 for a drop-in IF you get there before 7 am which is not always so easy. I went once last week and zero times this week. My goal is at least twice next week.

    Are those the wunder under crops you’re wearing? I just bought the wunder under full pants a couple weeks ago and I am IN LOVE with them, now I’m really tempted to get the crops too!

    • Caitlin April 15, 2011, 2:23 pm

      They are sprint crops 🙂

  • Kristin April 15, 2011, 2:25 pm

    I can so relate with the math. You definitely can’t trust me when it comes to number crunching. However, people can trust me when it comes to words, and grammar. 🙂

  • Holly @ The Runny Egg April 15, 2011, 2:25 pm

    I love listening to music when I run, but sometimes it is nice to just zone out and be in your head! I agree with you that it takes a while to get to that point.

    Love the big egg!!!

  • Kelly April 15, 2011, 2:26 pm

    Lucky for you, I used to be a math teacher. The easiest way to think of 25 x 40 is to think of quarters. 25 cents x 4 is a dollar so 25 x 4 = 100. You didn’t multiply by 40, you multiplied by 4, so you still have 10 to multiply everything by. 100 x 10 is 1,000. Or you can also think of it as having an extra 0 (or 10’s place) leftover to add on to the 100. 🙂

    • Caitlin April 15, 2011, 2:28 pm

      You lost me at quarters. Seriously.

  • Caitlin @ The Caitie Experiment April 15, 2011, 2:27 pm

    My all-time, favorite ass-kicking arms workout is the Reebok Versa Training Strong Arms video (my stepmom made our into a DVD for me). Seriously, there was a time in my life when I did it 3-4x/wk and I had Michelle Obama arms before Michelle! The hilarious part? A much younger Dara Torres is one of the “Instructors”!!

    I am SO bad at math that I even wrote a post about a horrifying high school experience (http://tinyurl.com/44jscvg). I’m pretty sure I’m allergic to it, and I still sometimes count on my fingers when I think no one is watching. Oh well, there are worse things in life, right?

  • Ashley @ Feeding Ashley April 15, 2011, 2:27 pm

    I love mellow mushroom, but I do not like the vegan cheese they have there. I never thought swimming would be boring, but I’ve never done laps either.

  • Christine April 15, 2011, 2:30 pm

    I really wish I could be a swimmer, but the chlorine is so tough on my skin. I have to admit the first thing I thought about was not being to wear an iPod or Garmin, at least not the standard ones. I think it’s really great that you’re adapting and adjusting instead of wallowing!

  • Johanna B April 15, 2011, 2:31 pm

    I am a librarian and of course I love libraries. I work in a large hospital library but a couple of times a week I walk across the street to our wonderful public library.

    • Jazz April 15, 2011, 3:46 pm

      Hello from a fellow Librarian! I’m a GIS librarian so don’t get to the public one much!

  • Rachel @ No Need For Speed April 15, 2011, 2:32 pm

    Here’s a TIP on calculating tips!

    Take your bill amount (e.g. $24.00) and move the decimal point one spot to the LEFT – which turns $24.00 into $2.40. $2.40 represents 10% of the total bill. Multiply that number by 2 and you get your standard (for me, at least) 20% tip of $4.80.

    My dad taught me that trick when I was young, and it comes in handy alllll the time!

    • Caitlin April 15, 2011, 2:36 pm

      You are a freaking genius.

      • Jasmine @ Eat Move Write April 15, 2011, 2:42 pm

        My husband taught me that trick! It’s so incredibly handy for us non-math-minded peeps! 🙂

      • Amanda April 15, 2011, 7:50 pm

        I’m an accountant and this is the trick I use too. I’m supposed to be really good at math, but I’m very bad at doing percentages in my head.

    • Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope April 15, 2011, 10:19 pm

      I am terrible with math, too. The way I do my tip is this…whatever half of my bill is..(50%), then whatever half of that is (25%). So if my bill is $20…half of that is $10…half of that is 5$.

  • Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday April 15, 2011, 2:35 pm

    I always do math when I run. Surprisingly I’m not all that great at simple math even though I have a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics :/

  • Faith @ lovelyascharged April 15, 2011, 2:37 pm

    I am SO bad at math too. Apparently, I even have a “math face” that’s just utterly confuzzled when I have to work through a problem. I do math when I run though, it occupies me and I have to think so hard about it that I forget about the miles! I guess it figures that writers suck azz at math!

  • Morgan April 15, 2011, 2:42 pm

    Sing songs to yourself. It really makes the time pass. Or, calculate how many miles your swim. 1650 yards is 1 mile. It’s cool to think of it like that!

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) April 15, 2011, 2:42 pm

    Yeah for Library week. Ours had special facts everyday, an entry for a drawing each time you went and even a treats day. I’ve been 3 times…but I was going anyway 🙂

  • Anna April 15, 2011, 2:48 pm

    I used to swim a lot at my gym in high school, and they had these awesome lap counters for people to use. It was basically a bunch of shower curtain rings on a U-shaped bar that you put on the ground at the end of your lane. Every time you swim a lap, you move one one of the rings over to the other side. It was a great visual reminder and you never lost count.

  • Baking 'n' Books April 15, 2011, 2:48 pm

    I love your cute laid-back outfit with the leggings! And you hair! Grr…what I’d give for long, straight hair!…and that hoagie 😉

  • Shannon April 15, 2011, 2:49 pm

    I have an autographed copy of that Dara Torres book! It is an amazing read. I approach swimming like yoga. I think of it as a time to be at peace with myself. Swimming really calms me down and helps me focus on what is really important in life

  • Verna April 15, 2011, 2:51 pm

    You’re so cute!

  • DC Runographer April 15, 2011, 2:53 pm

    Caitlin, what other books on triathlons/swimming would you recommend? I’m all over the running ones, but need to read more about tris.

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat April 15, 2011, 2:53 pm

    This looks like such a fun day! Very cool about the egg, and I think Dara Torres is excellent inspiration!!! I used to swim competitively and always had to remember the number of laps, number on the clock that I started on, and how many 25s there are in 100, 200, 400, 800, 1500 etc… I always got lost in the beginning but it was easy after a while! 🙂

  • nicole April 15, 2011, 2:54 pm

    Swimming can definitely be a little boring sometimes but I love the “me time” without any distractions. I always feel so calm when I’m swimming, but I’ve always been a water baby. Please let me know if you try out any the the ipod devices!
    I love that photo of you! Those crops look really good on you.

  • Kath April 15, 2011, 2:56 pm

    Can I just say again how much I LOVE your bangs!!! (And I don’t like bangs on many people!)

  • Parita @ myinnershakti April 15, 2011, 2:58 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE libraries…and I still do! I remember going to the library after every single swim class I took at the YMCA and looking up books in the card catalogue…dewey decimal baby!!! I think I’m going to hit up my local library this week! Thanks, Caitlin!

  • Beth @ 990 Square April 15, 2011, 2:59 pm

    Please send one of those OMG candies to Baltimore express! Thanks! 😉

  • kelly April 15, 2011, 3:01 pm

    I am also on the injured list and banned to the pool. I break my workout up into 4 x 1,000 yards (that was one of my events in college). I usually entertain myself by trying to pass as many people as I can and pretending I’m in a race. Sometimes I even talk to myself in an announcer voice. No one said swimming made you sane.
    As for the mp3 players, I’ve tried a few and nothing has worked that well, unfortunately.

    • Laura April 15, 2011, 3:17 pm

      I love that you talk to yourself in an announcer voice! If I start getting worn out doing a workout DVD at home, sometimes I pretend I am the instructor and start encouraging my “class” to keep going. Whatever works, right? 😉

  • Angela April 15, 2011, 3:03 pm

    I lurve libraries! Woot woot!

  • Julie (A Case of the Runs) April 15, 2011, 3:05 pm

    You look good!

    Swimming (even if I’m not doing laps like you) always gets me SO hungry. This is counter to what I’d hope would happen after exercise, but it’s such a derailer sometimes. Well, besides the fact that I can’t swim well.

  • Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope April 15, 2011, 3:11 pm

    Haha! I always have to write out Math when I do it… I’m usually very fast that way, but numbers in my mind don’t always work out correctly. 😉

    Awesome hoagie!!!

  • Mary @ Bites and Bliss April 15, 2011, 3:12 pm

    Swimming is so difficult! I’m not sure if it’s the fact it’s just different that usual cardio or the whole “no music boredom” thing..but it really takes a lot out of you!!

  • Laura April 15, 2011, 3:15 pm

    If you know how many laps you need to do total, maybe you could put that many hair elastics (a.k.a. “fubbies”) on your wrist and then transfer one to the other wrist each time you complete a lap. I’m not a swimmer, so I don’t know if doing something like that would actually work…just an idea!

  • chelsey @ clean eating chelsey April 15, 2011, 3:17 pm

    I swam in high school and still do it for cardio sometimes. I love it!

  • Liz @ Tip Top Shape April 15, 2011, 3:18 pm

    That tempeh sub looks amazing!!!

  • Me-Linh @ Sweet and Sweat April 15, 2011, 3:18 pm

    Underwater calculator watch! They should invent those..

  • ashley April 15, 2011, 3:30 pm

    1. you’ve inspired me to start swimming.

    2. your hair looks amazing.

    3. where did you get your black stretchies??? I need them.

    • Caitlin April 16, 2011, 11:03 am

      Thank you so much 🙂

      The tights are from Lululemon. They are sprints!

  • ashley April 15, 2011, 3:31 pm

    1. you’ve inspired me to start swimming.

    2. your hair looks amazing.

    3. where did you get your black stretchies??? I need them.

  • Victoria (District Chocoholic) April 15, 2011, 3:32 pm

    Chocolate and swimming in one post! I’m in heaven. A great written resource with swimming tips is Total Immersion series: http://www.totalimmersion.net/index.php

    And here are some waterproof mp3 players: http://www.swimoutlet.com/Waterproof_MP3_Players_s/363.htm

    I’ve never used one – even swimming 4000-5000m workouts. I just break up my workout to keep it interesting – different strokes, breathing patterns, intervals, effort levels, etc.

  • Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife April 15, 2011, 3:35 pm

    I LOVE swimming and I LOOOOVEEE the library! I am a total nerd and read a ton, swim lots, and adore going to the library. LOVE this post–and love caramel+choc. yumm.

  • Amy April 15, 2011, 3:43 pm

    SO happy to see all the library love! I’m getting my master’s in library and information studies, and I really want to work in a public library. The internet has hugely impacted how libraries are used, and they’re struggling…it thrills me to see the enthusiasm!

  • Mary (Sisters Running the Kitchen) April 15, 2011, 3:44 pm

    I wish I could get into swimming. I agree with the first comment that it does require more effort than going for a run. I also agree that I think swimming can be so boring and dull… hahhaha i guess because I have never really been serious about swimming. I better get serious soon because I signed up for a triathlon at the end of the summer! Also, that OMG! chocolate looks like heaven to me. I love, love, love the combination of caramel, chocolate, and SEA SALT!

  • Samantha @ Mama Notes April 15, 2011, 3:48 pm

    Have you lost weight? You look skinny.

    (in good way!! 🙂 )

    • Caitlin April 15, 2011, 3:57 pm

      Naw, I’m just standing awkwardly. But thanks 🙂

  • Kate (What Kate is Cooking) April 15, 2011, 3:48 pm

    Haha, I’m so bad at math too! The last time I swam in a lap pool I was having a hard time even keeping track of my laps because my brain just shuts off when thinking about numbers. Sad but true. Thank goodness for Garmins- they do all the work for me 🙂

    • Mary April 15, 2011, 4:06 pm

      They make a swim computer to count laps. It costs about $100 though. You can find it at swimoutlet.com.

  • Devonshire April 15, 2011, 4:02 pm

    I think it’s really awesome that you’re not letting your injury stop you from training! I love reading your blogs everyday! You’re proof that one can live a happy and healthy life!! Keep blogging!!

  • emily April 15, 2011, 4:06 pm

    Holla! My mom’s a librarian! I never actually use my public library though, thanks for the reminder.

  • Ellie@fitforthesoul April 15, 2011, 4:11 pm

    oOOoo I love that picture of you with the egg Caitlin! 😀 And so great that you’re swimming as an alternative~I bet it feels empowering and fresh.

  • Heather April 15, 2011, 4:30 pm

    I used to swim competetively, so I try and focus my workouts on improving my kick, pull, reach or a specific stroke.

    I do a couple hundred metre warm up and calculate how many laps that is because I am terrible at keeping track of how many metres I am at. Then I make a workout set and run through it until I hit my target distance.

    A very basic workout, for example:

    200 freestyle warm up

    100m freestyle (4 laps)
    100m breaststroke (4 laps)
    100m backstroke (4 laps)
    100m butterfly with fins (or kick with fins)(4 laps)
    100m flutterkick (4 laps)

    I run through this 2 or 3 times. To make it more challenging I sprint every alternating lap, or one lap per set.

  • Marci April 15, 2011, 4:33 pm

    my opinion is that if you enjoy swimming, it’s an excellent workout! always feel so much hungrier after swimming! the annoying part to me is the bathing suit, wet bathing suit, and accessories. there are also counters on your finger like a ring that are pretty inexpensive.

  • Emily April 15, 2011, 4:36 pm

    Congrats on swimming! I was a competitive swimmer (I even swam at the Charlotte Aquatic Club when I trained on MAC!) I’d be happy to send you some workouts if you want to add variety, as I write workouts for a few of the people in my grad program who are also getting more into swimming.

    My method for counting laps was to only count every other lap. So, instead of 40 laps= 1,000 I would think 20 50’s= 1,000. That way there’s less to count, which made it easier for me. Not fool proof (I once swam an extra 50 in a race), but easier!

  • Cara April 15, 2011, 4:37 pm

    I love swimming! I am so glad you are getting into it again, and the triathlon no matter how much of it you do will be a fun way to perk up this season of injury!
    I was on several swim teams as a kid and would make up stories in my head as I went along, and of course always loose track of the laps I was on…. Math isn’t my thing either.

  • Ash @ Good Taste Healthy Me April 15, 2011, 4:48 pm

    The only way the OMG could be even BETTER would be wrapped in dark chocolate. Mmmmm!!!! All my favorite flavors rolled into one!

  • Melissa @ Be Not Simply Good April 15, 2011, 5:15 pm

    I love the library!

  • Molly @ RDexposed April 15, 2011, 5:22 pm

    Salted chocolate is beyond genious. My moth is watering just thinking about it.

  • Dee April 15, 2011, 5:22 pm

    Congrats on finding your new fitness inspiration! I too am oddly horrible at math, it’s like whatever brain function that controls computations has been severely damaged. I always use a calculator, cuz I’ll never get it right in my head. Also: my first ever job was at a library, and I loved it! I still get a thrill visiting a library.

  • Cate April 15, 2011, 5:34 pm

    holla! for the library & mellow mushroom! 🙂

  • Rachel @ The Perseverance Diaries April 15, 2011, 5:35 pm

    I LOVE Mellow Mushroom! They have them in Florida where I am from but now I live in NYC and they don’t exist here.

    I always get confused with keeping track timing-wise of workouts. I can’t even do HIIT because I get all side-tracked trying to remember how many seconds I go fast, how many I go slow. I wish I was better at paying attention to that stuff!

  • DadHTP April 15, 2011, 5:52 pm

    heres a way to track laps – pyramids! First, one lap, then 2 laps then 3…then back down to one. Just figure out how far you want to swim, and calculate the highest number you need at the top of the pyramid – 6 = 1750 yards in a 25 yard pool. Since this seems to make swimming interesting, think how boring it really is.

  • Miranda @ Working Mom Works Out April 15, 2011, 6:20 pm

    I agree that cardio can be boring. If I’m on the treadmill, I have to have music or I can’t run. At all. Outside is a different story. Good luck counting laps!

  • Amy April 15, 2011, 6:41 pm

    I work in two libraries and am getting my Masters in Library & Info Science so I’m loving all this library love!! 😀

  • Lacey @ Lake Life April 15, 2011, 6:41 pm

    I so wish we had a Mellow Mushroom around here. Whenever I see posts about it I inevitably start drooling…and then I can’t do math either (or ever), lol!

  • Phoebe April 15, 2011, 7:17 pm

    Does anyone know of a good waterproof MP3 player/waterproof conversion for an MP3 player/way to listen to stuff underwater? I LOVE swimming laps for a long period of time (although since I am no longer at a university I don’t have an awesome Olympic pool with tons of lanes to swim laps in, sigh) and I get so bored in the pool for over an hour at a time. I have researched some options but they’re so expensive I’d want to know something that would really work.

    • Caitlin April 16, 2011, 9:39 am

      I’m going to research this some more, so I’ll let you know what I end up purchasing!

      • Jen April 18, 2011, 3:37 pm

        I used to do laps with music, and I can recommend some products that worked wonderfully for me!

        I used these H20 Audio Waterproof Headphones: http://www.amazon.com/H2O-Audio-H3-Waterproof-Headphones/dp/B000WD7B20/ref=sr_1_15?ie=UTF8&qid=1303155230&sr=8-15

        They wrap around the back of your head, so there’s no worrying about accidentally swimming into the cord while doing freestyle (I usually tuck the extra cord into the back of my bathing suit.)

        I also got an Otterbox for my iPod Nano (2nd gen.), but Amazon.com sells a whole bunch of Otterbox cases for different iPods: http://www.amazon.com/Otterbox-903-01-2-Waterproof-Case-iPod/dp/B000ASAE8U/ref=sr_1_21?ie=UTF8&qid=1303155271&sr=8-21

        I’ve never had a leak or a problem, and the sound is so clear underwater! People would stop me at the pool and ask where I’d bought them. 🙂

        • Jen April 18, 2011, 3:38 pm

          I should add that I purposely didn’t buy one of the “bone-conducting” waterproof MP3 players made by Dolphin or Speedo because of reading so many negative reviews. I actually got myself a used iPod nano off of eBay, so I could still have an MP3 player that functioned in the above-water world.

  • Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} April 15, 2011, 7:23 pm

    I love that picture of you thinking by the pool! 🙂 That is totally me with math.

  • Sarah (Running To Slow Things Down) April 15, 2011, 7:46 pm

    The OMG. I love it. 😀

    I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on the book! These kinds of books can be so inspiring, so if it’s good, I’ll be picking it up. 😀

    • Caitlin April 16, 2011, 9:40 am

      So far it’s REALLY GOOD!!!!!!!! I’m halfway through.

  • Ashley @ the fit academic April 15, 2011, 7:56 pm

    I’m training for a triathlon on May 30th – I’m so glad you’ve decided to do one around the same time – it’ll be fun to read your progress, etc!
    On another note – I HATE showering at the gym (it feels like camping or something)! I usually try to schedule workouts at the end of my work-day so I can go home and shower after. Any tips for getting over the locker-room shower mini-phobia? Or have you never had any probs with it?

    • Mary April 15, 2011, 8:55 pm

      I never shower at the pool either. I always go home to shower too.

      • Caitlin April 16, 2011, 9:39 am

        Flip flops!!!

        What don’t you like about it? Germ factor or public nakedness factor?

    • Amber K April 16, 2011, 12:20 pm

      I shower at home too. That way I can be in the comfort of my own home and not worry about carrying a bunch of extra stuff and possibly forgetting anything.

      • Mary April 16, 2011, 1:32 pm

        That’s why I do it too. Too much stuff to carry to the gym/pool.

  • Amanda April 15, 2011, 7:59 pm

    I have been trying to swim more lately too. My IT Band is in bad shape and I can hardly run a mile now so swimming has become the best workout for me. Making it hard to do a triathlon though. I find swimming very relaxing. I think because it cuts out most of the outside noise when you’re underwater. It feels kinda like meditating. I can only do about 800 yds right now though.
    I love libraries too! I don’t buy books anymore, I just go to the public library. Let us know how Dara Torres’ book is. I find books like that inspiring. I have read Dean Karnazes’Ultramarathon Man, Lance Armstrong’s It’s Not About the Bike, and Pam Reed’s The Extra Mile. I need a swimmer’s book!

  • Kelly April 15, 2011, 8:03 pm

    I really really enjoyed Age is Just a Number- good book. I also LOVE libraries!

  • Suzanne April 15, 2011, 8:40 pm

    Hi Caitlin, I’m thinking about taking up swimming too because there’s a pool where I live now…
    However, I’m concerned about damage to my skin and hair! (Okay, maybe I’m being a little vain!)
    I was just wondering how you plan to protect your skin and hair from the chlorine?

    • Kathryn April 16, 2011, 12:37 am

      I love swimming but my skin is super sensitive! I found that if I rub Lucus Paw Paw Ointment on my face it protects it. Yes, you’ll look shiny but you won’t have all the natural oils stripped from your skin. Vaseline or a rich oily moisturiser would probably work too.

      And if you rinse your hair in cold water before you swim, it’ll absorb very little clorine.

      Hope this helps!

      • Caitlin April 16, 2011, 9:41 am

        Good advice! I just wear a swim cap and get my hair dyed regularly 🙂

  • Laura (Starloz) April 15, 2011, 8:51 pm

    i used to be a swimmer & i loved it. i suggest you just focus on the laps & breathing. set the amount of laps you want to do then just count them out. clear head is the best idea.

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin April 15, 2011, 8:54 pm

    Ugh I agree that doing laps can be so boring! When I had to swim laps to get my NLS, I played games in my head. I would think of a category (like chocolate bars!) and then try to name one that starts with every letter of the alphabet. It helped to pass the time. 😀

  • Jess April 15, 2011, 9:11 pm

    I love your pool math speech bubble. If it makes you feel any better, I used to run at a park that had a half-mile trail, and something about trying to remember how many laps I had run, while simultaneously trying to remember how many I needed to run to accomplish a certain number of miles, always tripped up my early-morning brain. It wasn’t technically a math problem (more a short-term memory problem), but I do remember running around with my fingers held out to indicate which lap I was on. I’m sure I looked intelligent, lol.

  • Sonia April 15, 2011, 9:15 pm

    I love love swimming as a form of exercise and relaxant. I just love being in the water. I always said I would try a small tri just for the swimming and cycling if I didn’t have to do the running. I’m itching to get back to the pool, though my cough is keeping me out of the water.

    And I am horrible at math as well. I lose count of my laps waaaay too easily. If only you count have your own personal lap counter who would stick the board in the water and let you know what lap your on 🙂

    Good luck with the swimming. I look forward to reading more of your training!

  • Tara @ trulysimplebits April 15, 2011, 10:33 pm

    There is a waterproof music player out there! my friend has one. I don’t think it’s an ipod, but some sort of waterproof ipod. I am on the hunt for one too.. I find swimming boring but love the feeling of being in the water

  • Dione April 15, 2011, 11:35 pm

    Love the library!

  • Katherine @ Neon Blonde Runner April 15, 2011, 11:52 pm

    I read Dara Torres’ book, LOVED IT!

    I actually listened to it as a book on tape while running 🙂

  • Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table April 15, 2011, 11:55 pm

    Good for you!!! I’m sure you’ll rock the tri and swimming is such a killer workout.

    I worked at Mellow Mushroom in college and always loved their tempeh. It was actually one of the few places I worked that I would still eat at. 😉

  • Allison @ Happy Tales April 16, 2011, 12:14 am

    I went for a whole 2 years running without any music whatsoever… i always loved how “in the zone” i’d get… I think you’ll get used to not having music while you swim, and learn to love it, too!!!

    Also, I love the local library!!!!!!!!!

  • Lindsay April 16, 2011, 12:14 am

    My mom works for the library system, so I’ve been trained to have a healthy appreciation for libraries. My new apartment is within walking distance of the library, so the bf and I have been walking down there and renting movies pretty frequently. I’ve also got The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan checked out right now. 🙂

  • Kiran @ KiranTarun.com April 16, 2011, 12:21 am

    Love that you’ve found swimming as a way to get back into training 🙂

  • Kathryn April 16, 2011, 12:31 am

    I like swimming once or twice a fortnight when I can feel that my body wants cardio that is low impact and gentle but used to struggle like you with the lack of music.

    I’ve now found that I actually LIKE the quietness of it! I focus on my breaths and try to treat it as a half hour meditation excersise. Once I reframed it this way in my mind I didn’t miss the ipod so much…..a waterproof one would be pretty cool though 🙂

  • Priyanka April 16, 2011, 1:39 am

    I love the little talk you are having there in the thinking bubble. I do some math to divert my attention from the pain during my run. Counting the number of time my foot hits the floor, or the number of times I bat my eyelashes in 0.05 mile or so helps my mind wander.

  • Khushboo April 16, 2011, 1:47 am

    That’s exactly why I can’t swim all the time- I miss my iPod! That being said, the thought of running didn’t appeal to me all and it felt so good to just swim and zone out. Feel so rejuvenated now…

  • Marina April 16, 2011, 2:44 am

    I love to swim, but it can get so boring!
    Without the music, only water around you, pretty challenging. But I always feel so great after it 🙂

  • elizabeth April 16, 2011, 8:51 am

    Awesome news on the swimming. I have been swimming since I was a kid and also compete in triathlons. Age is Just a Number is a fanatstic book and I read it once a year for inspiration. My advice, other than joining a masters swim program, is to get yourself a pull buoy and paddles and DRILL DRILL DRILL.You will not improve much just swimming laps. Drills and intervals along with endurance swims will get you there. Just like cycling and running!! Good luck!!

  • Amber K April 16, 2011, 12:19 pm

    I love the library! I get books from there constantly. And tips are always easy for me, because I just use the EZ tip calculator on my phone. But before then, I didn’t care so much about percentage as I did making it a round number. My bill is 24.20? Then I’ll round it up to 30.

  • Lauren @ Sweet and Twisted April 16, 2011, 1:41 pm

    Looks like an awesome day with the swim, the sub, the giant chocolate egg and the chocolate you got to eat!

  • Kate April 16, 2011, 3:40 pm

    i really want to check out MAC…might have to stalk you for a pool date?! ps – i totally do math when i am swimming…not much else to do (nerd alert)! haha

  • Sarah April 16, 2011, 10:31 pm

    I haven’t swam laps in a pool since I was taking swimming lessons back in elementary school! yeaaaaaa. I have been giving some thinking to signing up for my first triathlon ( i am also injured)
    I DO have access to a pool at my gym but its a little intimidating :O

  • Kristen April 17, 2011, 6:22 pm

    awesome job on the swim! I cant wait to get back in the pool. And yes it can be VERY boring. If you swim different sets it can mix things up a bit (let me know if you want different ideas!)
    Also, 30lbs of chocolate~ sign me up haha

  • Erin April 17, 2011, 7:24 pm

    Do you have a specific routine you follow when you swim laps or do you just wing it? I have been trying to phase in some swimming for cardio, but I always end up doing the same thing. Let me know if you have any tips or find a waterproof ipod!

    • Caitlin April 17, 2011, 8:18 pm

      So far I’m just doing freestyle laps but I’m going to start doing drills and will be posting my workouts!

  • Amy April 17, 2011, 9:30 pm

    I can’t decide if I am bugged out by the photo of the mushrooms or not. Shrooms always look so… so…

    On another note, I love your haircut more and more every time I see it!

  • Shayla April 18, 2011, 8:21 pm

    I have to tell you again Caitlin, love that haircut on you!! Bangs really are for you and you pull them off really well… your new ‘do just brightens up your face and really adds to your beauty 🙂

    • Caitlin April 18, 2011, 8:28 pm

      Thank you so much dear 🙂

  • Peter July 8, 2011, 7:05 pm

    On this site http://www.waterproofmp3player.eu ,I found reviews of many waterproof mp3 players. Seems H2O friendly is one of the most popular ones.

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