I went for my first training swim this afternoon as there are only 7 weeks left until the big day. All I can say is god help me. Whilst I haven’t swam in approximately 2 years I didn’t expect it to be as difficult as it turned out to be. I thought I’d take to the water like a duck as I have always been a strong swimmer; I started swimming from an early age and the last time I swam I could knock out an hour no probs. Well, apparently after 2 years off I take to water like an anvil. From the first length I was running out of breath and my arms were aching. Not the start I envisioned at all. This swim was a massive wakeup call and I now need to rethink my training schedule.
Until this afternoon I thought I could get away with just training at the weekends. However, to transform from an anvil to a duck I’m going to have to swim during the week too. Thankfully I live close to a swimming pool and I have a few free evenings during the week so hopefully it won’t be too difficult.
Today’s swim in more detail…
I met up with my friend Louise who is also swimming for Sport Relief, however she is doing the more sensible 2.5km Swimathon. Last summer Louise swam the Channel so she is a great person to train with. From the outset she was teaching me things; like the fact that in the world of swimming 5km is a half marathon! What!!!! I didn’t know that!!! Someone could have told me that before I signed up!!
Louise also had every piece of kit a swimmer should have – goggles, de-misting spray for goggles, ear plugs, hand moisturiser, water bottle, a watch that counted lengths! Louise also knows the best pools in London. Today we went to her favourite – Marshall Street Leisure Centre. From the outside it looks like a museum and from the inside it looks like a fancy aviary. It recently underwent a £25 million refit so it should do really.
During the swim I nearly drowned about 5 times. Seriously, I was taken aback by how taxing swimming is when you’ve neglected it for 2 years. Ok the pool was longer than I’m used to – it’s 30m – but still I should have been running out of breath towards the end of 1 length. So increasing my lung capacity is top of my priority list, so much so that I might reintroduce running into my life. I know; crazy, but that’s how anvil I am! It took me 45 minutes to do 32 lengths!
After the swim I suffered memory loss. Seriously. Louise suggested that after we complete the Swimathon we celebrate at Wagamama’s. I couldn’t remember which chain Wagamama’s was. Serious fail. I love Wagamama’s and even have a favourite dish, but I just couldn’t recall which restaurant it was post swim. Also after the swim, I suffered pain all over my body; especially in my shoulders. It’s time to add a masseuse to my speed dial.
Sadly this thing isn’t going to be as easy as I had hoped, however it will be fun. I like swimming, I’ve got a friend to train with who is a pro and it’s all for a good cause. So all is not lost! It will just be a little more work than I had planned!