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Putting self-deprecating humor on hold

So my friend Jenny sent me a link to the website Athlinks which gathers race results that have been posted online. The idea is that you register and can keep track of all your results in one easy place.

Jenny used the site's search engine to look up results and wrote to me later in the day: "You never told me you did a half marathon a few years ago."

Um, that's because I didn't.

Someone else with my same name (who, quite sadly for her also is my age and lives in New York State) ran the Long Island Half Marathon in 2006.

Me? My longest distance is an 8K.

But as I poked fun at myself, Jenny did the cyber equivalent of putting her fingers in her ears and yelling "I can't hear you!" at me. She's having none of my cynical self deprecation this week.

Which is a good thing. We all need friends who are willing to call us out on our ridiculous behavior every now and then.

So I put all that aside and tackled my open water swim ... with joy? Wait a minute. Could I actually be enjoying this swim? It dawned on me that indeed I was.

It was sunny, warm and the water was calm. The sailboat races were off in the distance and I just went about my slow, methodical pace up and down the break wall. I quickly lost my swim buddies Jenny and Carolyn (who heretofore will be known only as "Rock Star") as they kept a quicker pace. But that was OK with me. Someone asked me how it was going.

Slow, I replied.

But I kept plugging along, concentrating on keeping my head down, sighting and (attempting) to swim in somewhat of a straight line.

I wanted to take full advantage of the calm water, so I kept going until I had finished 2,000 meters, marking my longest open water swim ever. So much for the person who started by swimming 20 strokes away from the wall, then 20 strokes back.

Generally speaking, if I stop critiquing myself so harshly, I end up doing pretty well.

Not exactly rocket science, but not an easily learned lesson, either.

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