I have been swimming for a year now, and I've gone through a few rites of passage: the destroyed bathing suit, the scratched goggles, and last night, the exploding swim cap. But I've found a swimsuit I like, the rip in my fins hasn't lengthened, and I know the best lane to have, most of the lifeguards, and how to circle swim if need be.
In this past year I've taught 15 strangers how to breathe properly, seen one rescue by a lifeguard, picked up 15,000 forgotten kick boards from the deck (the lifeguards are not maids), paid a million dollars in quarters for the lockers, did one on camera interview for the local community access channel, and have executed exactly zero flip-turns.
I've also gotten faster, need to breathe less, and use swim paddles (they go on your hands) on a regular basis. And yet, I still have trouble swimming more than 50 yards at once. I watch the veterans swim without stopping for hours on end and 1) it looks impossible and 2) it looks incredibly boring.
So, I've decided to change up my swim routine. Rather than adding yardage (I'm up to 1350 yards now) I am going to focus on speed. It is more fun for me, it gets me out of the pool faster, and it makes me feel better. Since I'm not trying to join any swim teams or win any swimming awards, there really is no reason not to.