Swimming in 30 Degrees

Michelle Maas ’17

Warmth is for wimps. Last Saturday (April 9, 2016) was probably the coldest day of spring. The temperature was about 38-39 degrees. My pool has been open for a week or two, so my good friend, Julia Bueter, and I decided to go swimming. Julia and I had been on swim team together freshman year, and we wanted a “swim team drop-outs” reunion. We figured that we could take the cold. We had the plans to swim before we knew how cold it was going to be.


Julia and I with just our feet in the water. Photo credits Julia.


Julia and I donned our full swim team attire (flippers, swim caps, goggles, and competition suits) and took a tentative step into the water. Compared to the temperature outside, the water was warm. Taking off our warm flippers, we decided to brave a few more steps. Finally, we were knee high. Yes, it was cold, but not unbearably so… yet.

Looking at each other and laughing hysterically, we decided to go under. We did not stay under. We were both shivering as we tried to doggy paddle/freestyle with our heads above water to the safety of the opposite side of the pool. After that mini adventure into the icy depths of the pool, we decided to catch our breath and just laugh.

A couple minutes later, I decided that the only way I could warm up would be to swim. I swam a 75m (three laps) and began to feel better, though I was still freezing. Julia was even braver than me. She decided to go down the slide and into the freezing water. By this point, we were both shaking uncontrollably, either from the cold or from the laughter of our insanity. I swam a few more laps and became immune to the coldness of the water.

Julia was not so lucky. She had goosebumps everywhere, even on her face!  With chattering teeth we decided to remove ourselves from the pool. When we exited the pool, I realized how cold I really was. My body was red from all of the icy water. Bundled up in towels and our sweatshirts, we decided to go inside. We played Mario Kart Wii and then a bunch of really fun/interesting boardgames.

All in all, it was a fun experience, and I would do it again in a heart beat! 🙂


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