It is said that the first step of recovery from an addiction is admitting you are powerless over your addiction. Well, I have a problem. I suffer from PBA (better known as Pull Buoy Addiction) or even in some circles, Aquatic Crack. Hopefully, though, I am not powerless.
Why is this bad, you ask? No, not the powerless part but the pull buoy part. After all, my brand spanking new wetsuit has a feature of VPB ( "virtual pull buoy," not the more popular VPL acronym). However, the problem really manifests itself when when I need to swim without a blue and white pacifier stuck between my legs. My body gets off plane, I'm gasping for breath, and it seems like, although everything is moving in the right manner, very little forward progress in the water is happening and what is happening is slow.
The MiniMightMan Sprint Triathlon is scheduled for 4/18/2009 - no pull buoys allowed. Last year I did this event with the goal of doing the 400m swim under 10minutes. I don't remember if this was realistic or just a wish. It wound up that I didn't have a good swim as I went out too fast and just managed to hang on and others were seemingly flying by me. They reported my time as 11:43. I timed it closer to 11:00. Slow either way.
So I have about a month to break this addiction. I took the buoy out of my swim bag and put it in my garage resident tri bag. I swam 3 times without it already. Last night was the longest yet. It wasn't fast nor pretty but I timed 3x300 @ 7:50, 8:00, and 8:20 with breaks in between. I didn't drown. I didn't barf up water. I didn't suffer from withdrawal (OK, maybe a little).
Since I am addressing this issue is it an addiction, a dependency or simply one of those 21 day habits that need to be cured? Hopefully a non issue in less than a month but the true test will be 4/18/2009. I keep telling myself "don't touch the crutch....don't touch the crutch....."