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by Linda Shoenberger

October 1, 2009

Everyday your swim fitness is evident to everyone around you.  Of course fitness swimmers think about being fit everyday (or every other day), but often we don’t realize others are noticing our fitness too. 

They don’t approach you everyday and say, “Gosh you look great!”  But periodically someone will come up to you and say something like, “Gosh you look great!” or “How do you stay so fit?”

I often hear people complaining about “having” to go work out.  It never enters my mind that swimming is a chore or something I “have” to do.  I just do it.  I love it.  My email address is  I really do love to swim and every time I jump in the pool I say to myself, “this is the best part of my day!”

The idea that fitness swimming is fun was evident all around at the recent USAS convention in Chicago in September.  Each day of the convention about 150 USMS swimmers climbed onto the waiting bus at 5:00 a.m. to head out to the UCI pool to be coached by some of the best masters coaches from USMS. 

Chatting, laughing, stripping off sweats and jumping into the water, one would think we were a bunch of kids off to summer camp.  Racing back to the hotel with wet hair, hotel towels and a snack provided by USMS after an hour of long course swimming, we then headed to our rooms for a quick change and off to meetings.  Again, the swimming was the best part of the day.

Saturday brought a special treat when Robert Zeitner, a member of the Long Distance Committee organized an open water workout in Lake Michigan.  About 40 people piled into cars and headed downtown in the dark past the towering skyscrapers to strip and wade into beautiful Lake Michigan.   What a treat!  We swam out and back past Lakeshore drive and the glittering buildings.  People ran and biked past as we enjoyed the sunrise and the refreshing water.

Again, it was the best part of the day.  And to me, it was the best part of the convention.  Enjoying what I do everyday but in a different setting with new friends and old friends, swimming along, staying fit, celebrating my love of fitness swimming.

And a few days later, back home at my gym in Reno as I was walking into the ladies locker room to pull on my suit, a friend passed by and said, “Gosh you look great!  How do you do it?”  I said, “I just keep on swimming!”  I should have added, “And I love it and thank you for noticing.”