6 Colin’s Hope Swimmer Necessities

The Colin’s Hope Got2Swim Lake Austin 10K is this Thursday, September 3rd. Many swimmers have been putting in hours of open water swim training to prepare for the swim and shed light on drowning prevention.

Barrett will be swimming the 10K solo and I will be his swim guardian. We have a new addition to our swim team this year–NeeMoo! We picked him up in Boulder, CO while at Sweet Cow Ice Cream. It can get a little lonely on the water, so NeeMoo will keep me company on this year’s swim.IMG_3581

The swim is also a fundraiser for Colin’s Hope. Donations to Colin’s Hope will help raise water safety awareness and fund programs to aid in preventing children from drowning. Our fundraising goal is $1500 and we are almost there!  Donate Now!
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6 Colin’s Hope Swimmer Necessities:

  1. Swim Guardian. I’ll be Barrett’s Swim Guardian this year–keeping him safe in the open water and providing food/hydration along the way.
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  2. Team Mascot. Meet NeeMoo! He’s the cute little blue cow on the right. In addition to added company on the kayak, he’s also an additional flotation device!
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  3. SaferSwimmer. Every swimmer must wear a SaferSwimmer which is also referred to as the “orange float-y thing-y.” They help the swimmers to be more visible on the water and provide flotation for the swimmer if needed.
    SaferSwimmer Floatation Device for open water swimming
  4. Fearless Leader. Meet Alissa Magrum, the Executive Director of Colin’s Hope. She’s is Colin’s Hope all the time and has enough energy to power everyone during their swim!
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  5. Swimming Friends. Training for a 10K (6.2mile) swim can become tedious and sometimes even boring without the help of others to keep you company and swim alongside. Thanks to Colin’s Hope for organizing open water swims and providing swim support!
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  6. Most Importantly–A Swimmer!! Barrett (aka: My little fishy) One stroke at a time, and lots of banter between strokes– Barrett will keep me and NeeMoo (and anyone within earshot) company while he swims.
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Meet Nee-Moo

We took a trip to Colorado this summer and while we were visiting our friends in Breckenridge, we stopped into Sweet Cow ice cream shop because the sign said, “Simply Moolicious”– and it was. In addition to tasty ice cream, the decor includes these cute little “bouncy cows” on shelves in neat little rows. After our second visit to the store, we decided to purchase one and bring him home with us.

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Meet Nee-Moo (you know, like “Nemo” from the Disney movie, Finding Nemo). He will accompany us on this year’s Colin’s Hope Got2Swim 10K and will need to be sure to train so that he is ready to help me keep Barrett (and the other swimmers) safe during this year’s swim. Nee-Moo will be on the kayak during our practice swims practicing his “spotting” techniques and learning how to hold the paddle when I need a break to feed Barrett.

I sense there will be many adventures in addition to his kayaking trips so we created an Instagram under SeeNeeMoo. You’ll be able to keep an eye on what he’s up to when he’s hanging out with us.

First Swim Training Session

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Second Swim Training Session

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Post Swim Coffee

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SaferSwimmer

Have you ever asked yourself, “What are those orange floaty things in the pictures posted of Barrett swimming?” Do not worry, he and the other swimmers are not being stalked by the mysterious Lake Austin Orange Floaty creature. These orange floaty things are called SaferSwimmers. SaferSwimmers

Participants training for the 2014 Colin’s Hope Got2Swim Lake Austin 11k are spending many hours training in the pool and in open water. One way to safely open water swim is to wear a brightly colored swim cap in order to be seen by on-coming swimmeSaferSwimmer Floatation Devicers and boaters. In addition to wearing a swim cap, swimmers also wear the SaferSwimmer.

The SaferSwimmer is a floaty that attaches to the swimmer and floats behind the swimmer while swimming. Not only does the SaferSwimmer provide better visibility for the swimmer while on the lake, but it can also be used as a floatation device in case the swimmer experiences cramps, dizziness, injury, or even to help another swimmer in distress. The SaferSwimmer also provides a waterproof pocket to hold personal items.

Barrett and many of the other individuals he swims with in the lake have many years of open water swimming and racing under their belts, but each of them have taken to the SaferSwimmer quite nicely. At first they thought having a floaty attached would be annoying, but each of them have said they barely even notice it while swimming. Since most of their swims in Lake Austin are out and back swims, the SaferSwimmer provides a way to stop and comfortably wait for the rest of the group at the turn-around.  IMG_1641

Each swimmer that participates in the 2014 Colin’s Hope Got2Swim Lake Austin 11k will be wearing a SaferSwimmer, swim cap, and have their swim guardian along side them in a kayak or SUP.  While participants were given the option to purchase a SaferSwimmer when registering, SaferSwimmers are also available for purchase but others. If you’d like a Colin’s Hope Logo’d SaferSwimmer, contact the organization directly. You can also find the SaferSwimmer on websites such as Keifer.com or SaferSwimmer.

Next time you drive over the Pennybacker Bridge or happen to be at the Pure Austin Quarry Lake, take a quick peek and see if you see a SaferSwimmer. Mostly likely, the swimmer attached to the SaferSwimmer is getting ready for the Colin’s Hope Got2Swim Lake Austin even on August 28th.

Barrett and I are getting closer to our fundraising goal of $1000. Every dollar counts! Visit Barrett’s fundraising page to donate.  Thank you to those who have already donated!

Barrett SaferSwimmer

 

 

Swim Barrett Swim

Athlete Ambassador - Colin's Hope

Last month, my husband signed up to participate in a charity swim to help raise money and awareness for an organization called Colin’s Hope. Colin’s Hope raises water safety awareness to prevent children from drowning. The organization is named after Colin Hoist, a four-year old boy, who despite having participated in swimming lesson each year,  At the young age of 4,  drown in a neighborhood pool.  He was with his family, and under the close watch of adults, but in the blink of an eye something went wrong.

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Colin

Drowning is the number one cause of death for children under the age of 4! Fueled by their desire to prevent such a tragedy from happening time and time again to other children,  Colin’s family founded Colin’s Hope to promote water safety in their community and to educate children, parents, and lifeguards on drowning prevention.  Believing that a few simple tips and rules might make a difference in the life of another child keeps them passionate about their new purpose.

Each swimmer who participates in the charity swim must have a swim guardian accompany them. I will join Barrett on his swim as his swim guardian by paddling a kayak next to him, carrying nutrition and other items he may need along the way. We have both participated in many open water swims and understand the importance of water safety. This is our way to help a wonderful cause and also challenge ourselves. 11K is a long way to swim. 11K is also a long way to paddled. That’s a lot of husband/wife time too!

My swimmer!
My swimmer!

The Got2Swim Lake Austin 11K is scheduled for Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 7:30 AM. We are busy training and raising awareness along the way. Your help is appreciated in helping us raise $1000. Check out Barrett’s Fundraising Page. Tell a friend about Colin’s Hope too! The Colin’s Hope website is a great swim safety resource for adults and children.

In the meantime, we’ll be on the water!

Early morning swim - Lake Austin
Early morning swim – Lake Austin