2013 Fundraiser

Emily von Jentzen is an Ultra Marathon Swimmer who completes lengthy endurance swims to raise money for children with special medical conditions.

Donate Now

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Roller Coaster Rides

Worked hard this weekend!  I had planned a trip to Helena Thursday-Saturday but the weather forecast in Helena unfortunately was mostly thunder, lightening and rain!  So I postponed my trip to scope out Canyon Ferry until next weekend.

Right now, I'm laying on the couch watching The Closer with both dogs cuddled at my feet.  I've gotten to the point where I really love the "sore rewards" that follow a day or a few days of hard workouts.

I got four swims in this weekend.  Yesterday morning I did a resistance swim in the pool with a swimming parachute that I have nicknamed "the punishment parachute."  My main set of my workout was 8 x (100 with parachute, then 200 FAST without parachute) was pretty brutal!

After my pool swim I did a swim with some friends in Somers Bay....unfortunately we had a bit of rough water on Flathead Lake which ended up giving us about an hour of a free roller coaster ride!  I was wiped out Saturday night for sure.  I made homemade enchiladas for dinner and spent the rest of the evening cozy on the couch!

This morning it was REALLY hard to get out of bed....but I did and made it to the pool and got a quick 2 mile swim in (kick emphasis) with time to rush home, eat some pancakes and make it to our morning open water swim in Whitefish Lake!  We had a small group of three swimmers for our swim, but had a kayaker and a canoe accompanying us.  It truly was a beautiful morning on the lake and I was happy to have both my workouts done by early afternoon so I could relax with my pups the rest of the day.

I need to build up enough energy to go to the store and get some dog food....I may have to bribe myself with a trip to the frozen yogurt store in order to abandon my comfy spot on the couch.

Hope you all had a nice weekend too!


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Why Labradors Cannot be Trusted

Busy, busy day today!  Coached before work, then had a radio interview about my swim, then worked all day!

Fortunately I got off work a little early and got a nice apx 2 mile swim in BEFORE the storm hit....it was close though!

You can only get luck like that once a day....which is evidenced by the unfortunate demise of my dinner.  I was so excited to go home, pre-heat the oven and throw in my pre-prepared dinner that I did all the necessary prep for yesterday so I wouldn't have to do any "work" in the kitchen tonight.  Well, I took it out of the fridge, began to pre-heat the oven and I should have been suspicious when it was quiet in my house (with two dogs and two cats it is NEVER quiet).  I come out in the kitchen and find the Monster Mason finishing up the last of my dinner...before I'd even gotten to cook it.

HUGE let down!  :(

At least Mason ate well.

I now must go figure out a plan B....these situations do help me improve upon my weaknesses and get better at adjusting to the unexpected.

Good night, 


Monday, June 17, 2013

DAY OFF (from workout)

Oh boy....did I need an off day today!  I worked hard all weekend, got in 4 swim workouts...two days of doubles!  I swam in four different locations (Lake Bitterroot, Middle Thompson Lake, the Summit pool, and Whitefish Lake).

I was so SORE when I woke up this morning and I was so grateful I got to have a rest day.  I did still have to go to work though...but I didn't have to travel, so it wasn't too bad.

I have a really hard time when I am tired keeping up on "normal" obligations like laundry, grocery shopping, responding to emails and cleaning, so this evening when I got home I had a bit of catch up to do.

I'm really looking forward to the end of this week.  I'm taking a trip to Helena and its sounds like I'm going to meet Carter's whole family on Thursday!  Then Friday I'm going to make some decisions about my start and end points of my swim and get a little practice swim in too!

I've only got a few more weeks with my training in my wetsuit.  Almost all the lakes around here are close to if not above 60 degrees now and I can get in close to two hour swims without my lips and tongue being frozen!  I'm excited for the weather to get warmer so I can practice more like my swim will be....without the wetsuit...also swimming without the wetsuit will make for a more even tan.  :)

My dinner's almost done...so I will post again later!


Friday, June 14, 2013

Rain, rain, go away!

It's been a bit of a gloomy week in terms of outdoor training.  I only got a short swim in yesterday up in Whitefish Lake because the dark clouds started to roll in and I was sure I was going to get caught in another storm like Tuesday night if I "pushed it."  For some reason though, I am super sore today.

This week felt really long with an unexpected "house" issue....my hot water heater blew up--had scalding water leaking into my garage.  So that was fun, exciting and expensive.  I hit the snooze about four times this morning and would LOVE to go back to sleep.  Fortunately, my four legged "coaches" seem to have more energy when I have less and they literally drug me out of bed this morning.  :)

I have a lot to get done at work today, so surely the day will go by fast.  Rain or shine I will get a swim in this afternoon.

My good friend Katie will be in town from Helena this weekend-so I imagine there will be some swimming with the Labrador swim team this weekend as well (Katie's dog Scout and my dog Dixie love swimming with me and playing "fetch race").

There is a lot on my to-do list this weekend...but all I really want to do is swim and eat cookies.  :)

Have a good Friday everyone.


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

For the Record...

Hey two blog posts in one day... :)

I would like to start this post by saying that I try not to listen to the negative things some people say.   But I came across something that really rubbed me the wrong way this evening.  Maybe I'm a little cranky because my group's afternoon swim got the ole "Montana Spring Surprise" and we were rushed out of the lake by a thunderstorm that moved in at the middle of our swim.  But regardless....I had to address this.  I'm going to get this off my chest and that's the last I will speak about it.

I like to see how far articles on my swims go.  The Beacon's article was picked up by the AP, so it's traveled aways.  I was happy to see a link that it was reprinted on the GolakeChelan.com site.  What I was not happy to see was the following:

We posted this story a day ago, and then pulled it a few hours later, when we were questioned about the accuracy of our writing. In particular we were challenged about the veracity of the phrase "First Woman to Swim the Length of Lake Chelan."The argument was made that to be more correct, we would be better to identify Emily as the "The First Woman to Swim From Stehekin to Chelan" since Emily's 2011 ordeal on Lake Chelan started at the Stehekin Landing and terminated at the edge of Chelan city limits near Rocky Point; but didn't end a few more miles downlake at the City Marina or perhaps some other landmark such as the old Chelan Bridge, denoting the geographic 'end of the lake."
Now, one important point I'd like to emphasize....I absolutely love the folks at GoLakeChelan, they were great supporters of A Lakke for Katelyn, both before and after and I think they represent the spirit of the Chelan area residents, people I have found to be extraordinarily generous and supportive, even to perfect strangers.

I'd also like to emphasize that I LOVE that the folks at GoLakeChelan are continuing to "follow" me.

What irks me is that someone would write into this news group and question the accuracy of the statement that I was the "first woman to swim the length of Lake Chelan."  Well, I guess I would clarify that I was the first PERSON to swim the length of Lake Chelan.  I see nothing wrong with that statement.  I got in the water at Stehekin (the northern part of the lake) and swam my little heart out for 36 hours only to exit within the city limits of Lake Chelan.

Who in the world would claim that because I did not end at a certain "geographic end of the lake" or a certain landmark, that I thus could not claim to be the first person to swim the lake?  Well, I will tell you who, Mr. Cranky Pants.  I do not know Mr. Cranky Pants' real identity, although I'd love to meet him he sounds like a charming gentleman, I certainly know the type.  Mr. Cranky Pants hides behind the protection of the computer screen, he's an anonymous blogger and a know it all.  I can also tell you one thing he is not, an optimist or an athlete.

Because I think that this is a good "teaching moment," and because I know I have a number of kids who look up to me, I'd like to address this.  You don't have to accept another person's negativity.  Some people who are scared to push themselves or try amazing things feel threatened by those who reach for the "unreachable." A friend of mine growing up (Krista) had a blog I followed for a while and she would draft letters to random people who made her mad as a way of dealing with minor irritants.  I like that tactic...so Mr. Cranky Pants, I have drafted the following letter to you:

Dearest Mr. Cranky Pants, 

Thank you for your interest in preserving the integrity of journalism.  You must have a great deal of free time.  I would invite you to research lake swimmers, particularly those that swim distances greater than 30 miles and those who swim for longer than 24 hour periods.  I can tell you they are far more rare than ironman athletes and also more rare than ultra-distance marathon runners (100 plus mile races).  I'd also encourage you to research into other attempts to swim Lake Chelan (there was one man who tried unsuccessfully several times-in fact I believe he made it less than 10 miles). And then there is me.  You don't believe I swam the whole lake.  But you don't have to believe it, because I lived it and I know it is true.  I swam that lake and no one else has done that before.  I invite you to try it.  Until you have swam the length of the lake, until you have been bashed by the angry waves for two nights in a row, until you have gone for a period of greater than 24 hours with numb fingers and toes due to the coldness of the water...I take your criticism with the tiniest grain of salt.

Folks like you are what's wrong with the world.  Those who try to break down the good, those who try to tarnish great endeavors.  But here's a little secret, you can't break me down...I'm stronger than you.  I've heard all sorts of things from your relatives, Ms. Negative Nelly and Ms. Debbie Downer...things like that it was cheating to wear a wetsuit or that I should have raised money for a different cause.  They couldn't break me down and neither can you...I'm stronger than you.

My mom and dad raised me to follow this simple principle: "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all."  Why be the person who tries to make someone feel worse?  Why does it effect you in any way that a news group refers to my swim a way in which you disagree?  Seriously?

Mr. Cranky Pants, I would challenge you to bring some good into a world that already has enough negativity.  Instead of offering your criticism, why not throw your time and energy into volunteer work, or raising money for a noble cause.  Or maybe you could make a donation to the Enduring Waves Foundation and help us raise money for Carter.


Emily von Jentzen
First Person to Swim Lake Chelan

Long time gone...

Sorry swim fans!  It's been far too long since my last post...as usually, my only real excuse is that I've been really busy...which is always my excuse.

Allow me to update you!

Since I last wrote, I've been a traveling woman!  One of my athletes and I traveled to Indianapolis for the USMS Short Course National Championships.  We had a super fun time, the pool was amazing and we met olympian Jason Lezak!

And we got these super cute swimming teddy bears from Swim Outlet!

My races went pretty well, all season best times and I got two medals!  :)  We also went to a delicious cupcake bakery and the Zoo!  

I was barely home for three days and I had brought home a souvenir cold with me home from my trip and I had to turn around and fly to Las Vegas for the 10K (6 miles) open water championships that were held in Lake Mead.  I had an okay race in Las Vegas, it wasn't as fast as I had hoped, but it was my first time in open water for the season.  I got a little sunburned, but got 2nd in the 30-34 age group and brought home some hardware.

Then, just as soon as I got home, the weather here in Montana FINALLY started to improve!  And then naturally, I've been jumping into any lake I can whenever I get the chance.  My Masters team is really starting to get into the open water swims too, which is giving me more people to swim with!

So far I've swam in Foys Lake, Ashley Lake, Whitefish Lake, Swan Lake and Flathead Lake.  We have an awesome schedule with lots of local lakes to swim in this summer so I'm really excited for that. 

I also was invited to speak about my swims as the key note speaker at Cold Springs Elementary School's Sports Day in Missoula.  I had a great time telling the 2, 3, and 4th graders about big dreams and working hard to achieve your goals.  This week I got 24 hand written letters from kiddos who wanted to tell me thanks for speaking to them.  Pretty cool stuff!

Speaking of pretty cool stuff, the local paper here, the Flathead Beacon, wrote a wonderful article with some amazing photography on my swim this summer that ended up on the FRONT PAGE!  In case you missed it, click here.

I'd love to write more....but I don't want to be late for my swim this afternoon with my friends!

Thank you all for following!