Lake SwimI managed an open water training swim in The Quays at Camberley about 10 days ago! It was very early (7.30am) on a grey Sunday morning. I met with Basil, my brother-in-law for a bit of training & expert advice (Basil completed his first double iron man the week before, only a 4.8mile swim, 224 mile bike ride & 52.4 mile run ….. and people think I am mad!!). The water temperature was about 15 Deg C. It was definitely warmer in the water than out, and with a keen cold wind blowing the water was quite choppy; good practice for my sea swim.

The two major differences from swimming in the pool were, (i) the lack of a wall to push off from every 25m! The circuits (lengths) we were swimming were 1000m round, and (ii) the cold. My body was quite warm in the wetsuit, but the cold on my face literally took my breath away every-time I was face down, so instead of doing 4 strokes to every breath, I was breathing on every stroke. I swam about 2.5km in total, and although more tired than after a swim in the pool, felt pretty good!

I am also getting help from Nigel in the pool on a Friday night for my swimming technique in general, and more specifically for open water swimming! After using fins in the pool last week, my legs felt they had done as much of a work out as my arms. I am now swimming a much longer stroke, with improved breathing efficiency! I feel like I am well on track for the swim at Lulworth Cove in 10 days time.

IMG_0786The day before my swim in the Quays I took my God Daughter, Sophie, up The Shard in London. We had a lovely blue skies,and the 360 deg views were magnificent. We could see way past Wembley Stadium, the Olympic Parc, The Oval and Battersea Power Station. It really gives a different perspective of London. We spent a very happy day walking miles, people watching & catching up. Only in London could you watch men wrapping themselves in cling film, people painted gold and silver apparently sitting in mid air, and a 1000 people riding their bikes naked ……!

I am enjoying my monthly challenges, but finding that as I start new activities my list of hobbies is growing. I am now regularly walking, cycling, swimming & eating chocolate. I am sure I would be snow shoeing as well if we had snow!! The upside is that I am probably fitter now as I start the six month countdown to 50 than I have been for a long time!

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