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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Be Brave

For those who has swam 6.5km for the Kapas – Marang Swimathon, a 3km swim is like nothing.

And I bet for those Ironman triathletes, they must have done loads of 3km swim (or more) during their training sessions.

But for me, to be able to swim 3km was like a dream come true.

Yup, yesterday was the first time I swam 3km – non stop!

Dream come true indeed.

Why? What is so big deal about that?

Because few years ago, I could not even swim 25m.

Let alone to swim one lap of the 50m pool length. I even thought it was an impossible task. At times I felt like giving it up.

I always envied and amazed at those people who can move swiftly in the water, doing laps upon laps of swimming. Fast or slow it didn’t matter. It looks like they were enjoying their swims, effortlessly.

That seeded the intention in my heart to one day, be able to do as what they do.

Yeah, I’m a very jealous type of person. Jealous at a better person. A jealousy that leads me to work myself harder without doing any harm at that better person.

On a general note, majority of the people in this world know how to run. Fine.

And I am assuming not so many people have trouble to ride bicycles either.

But, there are more people who I came across that don’t know how to swim. Or at least they would say they are afraid of getting drowned.

To think about it, yeah, getting into water might be a high risk – if you don’t know how to survive in it.

Survival requires braveness too. Cowards will never survive successfully for long time.

For me, I think braveness is supported by some knowledge and your own self’s willingness to be brave.

And I believe, braveness can be developed – only if you let yourself to be.

When I was a kid, my family would sometimes bring us to the beach (Pantai Cahaya Bulan in Kota Bharu, Kelantan). And as a kid, I would dash into the waves and tried to do something that looked like a swimming act. I never went anywhere deeper than chest high though, simply because I was afraid of getting drowned.

During the flooding seasons too, I would never go to anywhere deeper than neck high. I was still scared. Yup, I was a bit hard-headed boy back then who had caused some headaches for my parents.

One fine day in the year of 2006 (I think), I went to an Olympic size swimming pool for the first time in my life. A 50m length pool with one end having a depth of 2m, i.e. deeper than my height. I didn’t even know how to swim a proper breaststroke yet, and definitely I didn’t know how to thread water (i.e. floating).

But yet, I braved myself to enter the pool from the shallow end. I didn’t swim much at that first attempt. What I did was to hang by the wall and observe and learn (i.e. acquiring knowledge) on how other people swim and float in the water. I looked from under the water. Well, some swimmers may have thought that I’m that pervert boy who sinks his head under the water to look at female swimmers. Well, I have no control of what they wanted to think or say. I looked at everybody though. Men, women, young boys, elderly people, everybody. Fair, right?

I just needed the knowledge to build my braveness. Hence I have to learn. And hence, I have to ‘look’ at them.

From then on, I kept on learning, and trying, and letting myself to be braver and braver.

I had many nice and happy moments by the swimming pool. Nah, not because of those curvy bodies wrapped in skinny swimming suits. But because I passed lots of small stepping stones in my journey to be able to do as what I can do yesterday. From not knowing how to thread water or swim front crawl (freestyle), to be able to swim 3km non stop.

It was one very long journey for me. Not only weeks or months. But, it has taken me years and years to accomplish it. And my journey is still on the move. My target is much further ahead. And I hope I will get there soon.

So, what if you don’t know how to swim? What would be the solution?


Be brave.

I mean, allow yourself to learn and acquire the knowledge on how to swim in any methods you prefer, whether self learning or getting a swimming coach. But more importantly, allow yourself to be brave.

Remember, braveness can be developed – only if you let yourself to be.

Enjoy your swim.

I enjoy mine.


Anonymous said...

braveness can be developed. and so it positivism. nice write up !! woo hooo !!!!!!!!!!

p.s. my swim still sucks. still a lot has to be done to improve it !!

Anonymous said...

go nikkie go !!!!!!!! hunnggaa hunggaa hunggaaa !!!!!!!!!

..::EnAikAY::.. said...

Thanks Julie.

Who cares if your swim sucks? You are an IRONMAN!!!

I don't know whether i'll be that brave to do Ironman.

I hope i will.

KOOKY KASH said...

cewahh! well done, nik! Kapas Marang, next year ok?

..::EnAikAY::.. said...

Thanks Kash.
Kapas Marang next year eh?
Err.. hmmm.... gimme few moments to think first ok... hehe.

Diket said...

3km is an achievement. Well done bro.

Eventually you posted something about swimming, something that I'm still learning. 300m pun dah huru hara...kah kah kah!

Told u I'd come back to ur blog & being inspired.

jiha-run-for-life said...

wow ur writing really make me tempted to continue my swimming lesson..

but i still afraid of getting drowned..this is like the hardest task for me rite now..huhu

..::EnAikAY::.. said...

Thanks man.
It's OK. Sedangkan keadaan darurat dan huru hara dalam negara pun boleh jadi tenang, inikan pula huru hara di dalam kolam renang. In no time (with more training), that 300m will be 1km. Just don't give up.

Yes, you should click the RESTART button for your swimming. I can tell you how not to be afraid of getting drowned, if you want to. But first, you have to believe that YOU WILL NOT DROWN.

Anonymous said...

'I had many nice and happy moments by the swimming pool. Nah, not because of those curvy bodies wrapped in skinny swimming suits.' .... sure ehhh? (Why not)

U will always get what u want coz u really strive for it. Really proud of u honey. May our little princess inherit yr braveness & yr determination.

The Corporate Athlete said...

cool....nanti kita pace together in swimming kay.

amsyah said...

i am jealous! where did you learn to swim? much to Ian's disgust, I still kenot swim properly. am shopping for swimming instructor, lah

..::EnAikAY::.. said...

Our little princess will definitely inherit lots of superb human quality from you, rather than from me. Thanks for you never-ending support and sacrifice.

No lah, i can't be pacing with u in swimming. I'm too slow that even if i pace with a turtle i'll be left behind.

Good. Be jealous. And use that jealousy to pursue what you want to do in life! I'm sure you'll achieve what you want.

fyrul said...

nik wrote... "What I did was to hang by the wall and observe and learn (i.e. acquiring knowledge) on how other people swim and float in the water. I looked from under the water."

yeah.. i also learn to swim this way... i have no formal swimming classes.. all i do was observe others & ask.

thanks nik for writing another inspiring article. keep them coming & inspire people! i'll forward this article to people to inspire them to start learn swimming.