Some time ago in this column I unwisely mentioned that I had set a goal to swim 100 miles at the aquatic center. Since that time I have been asked by many people how my goal was coming. I always responded the same: “making progress.”
Well I can finally move from “making progress” to goal accomplished! Last month I completed swimming 100 miles at the City’s Aquatic Center and here is what I have learned.
- One hundred miles is a long way to swim! It’s not like running or biking. After a mile and a half I’m tired. The miles don’t add up as fast as I first hoped.
- Initially it was hard finding time to squeeze in a swim but like all things in life, if it is made a priority it gets done.
- Perseverance pays off. I’d go a couple of months without setting a toe in the water, but I didn’t give up.
- Better to set a goal high and work hard to achieve it then to set it low and quickly check it off the list.
- The aquatic center is awesome! What a great facility enjoyed by so many people in our community.
- The City has great staff. This wasn’t news to me that this experience had given me the opportunity to get to know the staff better at the Aquatic Center. Doug Botton, Lance O’Keefe, Nelson Vasquez, Mike Coash, Kathryn Hugger, Mark & Pete, the lifeguards, and the reception staff are all friendly, professional and helpful. They rock!
- Thanks! This is Southern California so swimming is a 12-month sport. The water is nice and warm in the winter and cool and refreshing in the summer.
- You don’t need to be an Olympic swimmer to get a good workout. Trust me, I won’t be setting any speed records any time soon, but I’m still am able to get a great full body workout.
- Swimming is excellent exercise. I never got hurt. I lost weight. I toned up. There is a reason why there are swimmers of every age and why we have all read so many times that swimming is the best form of exercise.
- Did I mention that 100 miles is a long way to swim?
In some ways, my 100-mile trek these last many months is a metaphor for my 35-year city management career. Like swimming, this job is hard, rewarding and challenging. I’ve met a lot of people and I’ve enjoyed wonderful relationships in our community. I also feel a lot of satisfaction for the accomplishments achieved over my career on behalf of our community.
I want to personally thank each of you whom I’ve had an opportunity to get to know, to work with or interact with. This City is an amazing place to live and as I move into the next phase of my life, I will still be calling Santa Clarita home.
Ken Pulskamp has served as Santa Clarita’s City Manager for the last 10 years. Prior to that time, he was the Assistant City Manager for 15 years. Ken is retiring, but promises to continue his swimming at the Aquatic Center.