Just this week, I was talking to one of the lifeguards at our pool about the fact that it is a bit warm. They keep it at 82F. After the conversation, I looked online and found that 82 is common for a multi-use facility, but lane pools are often kept a bit cooler.
Last night, I went for my swim and as soon as my toes touched the water, I knew it was colder then usual. That's alright, I figured, it's usually too warm anyways. Once I get going, it will be fine. It was unusually difficult to duck my head under the water to start swimming, but I did it and I started.
100 metres into my warmup, I still wasn't getting warmer. I stopped for a minute and talked to a lifeguard. The heating system was malfunctioning. The temperature was currently at 78F. Quite a bit cooler then usual. The temperature of the water didn't encourage extended conversations, so I ducked back down and resumed swimming. My plan called for a long set of 1800 after I finished my warmup, and I was just as happy not to be taking breaks along the way.
I never did warm up. But hey, I did Banff (one of the triathlons known around here for really cold water). I'm doing it again, as well as two other triathlons that have cold water. Really, the temperature of the pool was still balmy compared to the lakes I'll be swimming in this summer.
It would have been perfect halfway between there and the regular temperature, at around 80. An important lesson here though:
Be careful what you ask for. You might just get it.