As you know, the Oregon LMSC is hosting the 2021 1-Hour Swim ePostal National Championships. Unfortunately, many of us have found that our pool access has been limited or completely cut off so far during the pandemic, making it impossible to participate so far.
I have very good news! As Event Director, I recently applied for a one-month extension (through March 31) for us—and the rest of the nation too—to swim this event, and the USMS Long Distance Committee approved this extension. Hopefully, this extra time and the increasing availability of pools as pandemic risks drop will allow many of you to swim your Hour!
For event info, visit: https://www.clubassistant.com/club/meet_information.cfm?c=1308&smid=13499.
Here’s why you should participate in the 1-Hour Swim, and why it is important for you to do so:
- It’s a motivation and jump start for swimmers now reentering the water
- It’s a solid training opportunity
- It’s a chance to practice consistent pacing
- It’s a great conditioning benchmark
- It’s great long-range preparation for open water swimming this summer
- It’s just a plain old fitness swim
- It’s the best thing that you will do for your heart that day
If this isn’t enough, here’s another reason that you haven’t thought about. When USMS adopted a unified registration plan across the nation last year, the Oregon LMSC Board realized that the terms of this plan would result in a revenue drop, which could easily lead in a drop in services to OMS members (i.e. YOU). Proactively, the Board decided to bid for the 2021 1-Hour Swim and use the net revenue from this event to help maintain services without raising event & clinic fees. The good news: we won the bid. The bad news: the pandemic is severely limiting participation across the nation, and unless we can boost this participation we will fall far short of the needed revenue. You can help! By swimming and entering the 1-Hour Swim, you will be directly supporting your own local organizing group!
I realize that not everyone has full pool access yet. Some pools are not open yet, and others have limited available time to 40 or 45-minute blocks.
- If your pool is still not open, arrange time at other nearby pools for some training and 1-Hour Swim time. Your swim friends who use these other pools should be able to help you do this.
- If you have limited available time blocks, work with your facility manager to schedule double-blocks. They are often willing to bend a bit to accommodate your needs, as they are always interested in filling their available space. We are fortunate in Bend that JSFC already allows double-time booking in advance; you might mention this as you arrange your pool time elsewhere.
A word to those who are reluctant to do their 1-Hour Swim without being in the best physical state. We’re in unusual times. Do the best that you can to get back in shape, but do your Hour Swim as you are by the end of March. This year, participation is more the point of the swim than excellence. Before the extension was granted, and lacking pool access and training time, I swam my Hour on February 8 having been in a pool twice since November 13, when our pools closed. As you would expect, I went a far shorter distance (300 yards less) than I did last year. Oh, well. Although I don’t recommend doing your Hour Swim cold like this, I put my body on the line to show how important I believe our participation to be!
I’ll be sending information soon to our local team representatives about encouraging and organizing group 1-Hour efforts. OMS needs your help, and after our teams have been apart for so long, it would be nice to get together again to make this happen.
I’m a dreamer, and I fervently dream that hundreds of OMS swimmers accept the challenge by participating and entering the 1-Hour Swim. Please help make my dream come true.
Good luck and good swimming!