How did your week begin? Back to the grind. Stress? The ominous to-do list? Go. Go. Go? Longing already for the weekend, which seems like a decade away… A new year awaits—add another dose of stress x 10. Well. You are in charge of this narrative. Life.

I would like to share a snippet on how my week began—last week as an example…

Let’s start the week with Sunday. Yes, Sunday. While I use the Sleep Cycle App to monitor my sleep pattern, and the gentle wake up window it provides—please, it is still jarring. Feet on the cold floor, pair of shorts, t-shirt, sweatshirt, knit cap, flip flops, comatose to turn the blender on for a protein shake, hoodie up over the knit cap, sunglasses, drive, park—only to find a sign posted on the entrance to the pool, “69 degree water”—broken pump. (I want coffee.) The Speedo, the sticking toes in the water, (the water polo team is exiting, exclaiming that they never truly warmed up in the water…) looking at the water as my swim mates all gaggle on about how cold it is going to be. Dangling toes, move them a little faster—that does nothing. WTF, plunge in. Freezing! Freezing! First 50 yd., seriously thinking this is what it feels like to have a heart attack… Then, it all starts to smooth out, that lasts for about 45 seconds. Enter Dmitriy Banov, the coach who proceeds to get us all moving. I call it torture. The gears start to grind, slow to get going I am, but nearing the end of the hour, my engine is firing on all cylinders, the ice cold water is invigorating, refreshing, gliding through the water. Kicking ass in the water. Torture.

The particular swim set on this Sunday morn…



10 x 50 on 0:50


5 x 200 on 3:15

– last 50, overkick

8 x 100 on 1:35

– odds moderate

– evens push

5 x 150 on 2:20

– descend (slow to fast)

3050 Total yards + WU/CD

Torture Dmitriy style! I am fortunate to have found Southern California Aquatics, or SCAQ for short, in Los Angeles—established in 1979 by Olympic Silver Medalist Clay Evans and Bonnie Adair. After a life changing injury to my left foot in 2007, the path for my continued health and well being required the tough choice of getting in to the water for conditioning—more on this later.

Tough choices. I started out this entry, with a nod toward the demands of our daily lives. From every direction. What is your plan to meet these demands? Tough choices. It is not easy. But necessary. I am so fortunate to have my health and well being. I would like to direct you again to a wonderful friend, Loraine Stupakoff’s journal, and her battle with cancer. Loraine’s difficult ominous journey since her diagnosis—months long grueling treatments, surgery, and coming out on the other side with a new lease on life. But, lessons learned. I can not urge one enough to read through Loraine’s story, to put light on the urgency of taking care of oneself. I find it oh so inspiring. I hope you do too. Tough choices. Necessary. Invigorating.

What is your life health plan? Do you think that it can wait until tomorrow, or next week. Or next year? Go find a cold pool and dive in. It feels really good. (I need a coffee, make it a double espresso.)