My longest ever swim (and a cold dip in the lake)
April 30, 2015
It has been such a busy week, with lake swimming, cross fit and running so I think tomorrow may be a rest day.
On Monday morning, I had a cross fit session with SUTRI for the first time in a few weeks. There were only 4 of us there and Olly made it quite a relaxed session, with a lot of stretching. I was amazed by how flexible I felt. That may have been down to the super-painful sports massage that I had on Saturday. We deadlifted lifts (in 10 minutes). I started out with a relatively easy weight and finished at 55kg as I didn’t want to over-exert myself. We also did a lot of wall ball, which I’m terrible at. I think I’ve got a lot of muscle imbalances and throw in a wonky way. This makes me feel self-conscious, which makes me even worse.
Training with Southampton Tri Club
I went to STC swimming at 7pm and decided to stay for a double session. A problem with my parking permit meant that I started a bit late, so I was really pleased to be able to swim 3750m. It is by far the furthest I have ever swum (I’ve only swum 2000m or more 12 times, with my longest ever pool swim being 2250m and my longest open water swim being 2.6k. I would have liked to have swum 3800m (as an iron-distance swim is 3.8k), but at least I have a goal for another week.
On Tuesday evening, I went to the STC track session, but there was no coach, and the others who had turned up decided that it should be a hills session. We did just over 6km with much of it up and down golf course hill, which is a particularly tough hill at the best of times. By the end of the session, I was feeling better, but my legs were tight to start off with. Thanks, Donna for choosing the session!
After coaching yesterday evening, tonight’s session was my first swim in the lake. Unfortunately, a series of accidents and football traffic meant that what can be a 20-minute drive at the right time turned into over an hour and three-quarters. 🙁
I was told that the lake was a balmy 17C. I decided to start off wearing my new bootees and orca vest. They both worked brilliantly, but my fingers were very cold and my face was freezing. Fortunately, my breathing took much less time to calm down than last year. I did one rubbish lap (mainly doggy paddle!) and then a full lap of front crawl, but the sun was going down. I didn’t want to get colder, so decided that would be enough for today. Hopefully, the lake will be warmer next time and it won’t take me as long to get there. Stu arrived earlier than me and managed to swim 2 miles!
One good thing about the lake is that the old changing rooms have been demolished. There are new portacabins, which are really cosy (although the shower temperature still fluctuated between very hot and icy cold). I also felt safer than in the past. My NOWCA wristband was scanned in before I started swimming. It was scanned again when I finished, so hopefully, there won’t be any bodies drifting around in the lake!
It’s also been a week when a lot of my friends have been signing up for marathons – Paris, Bournemouth, New Forest and Brighton have been particularly popular choices. I’ll enter the ballot for London next week, but if I don’t get a place, I’m OK with that. I’ve not received any emails about my mysterious free place at Lisbon Rock’n’Roll marathon, but I don’t think it would be sensible for me to add it to my training schedule. It’s really hard being picky about what I will/won’t do. I’m really tempted to do a 5km swim at Stithians Lake in Cornwall on 19th July. It’s the day after I swim around St. Michael’s Mount, so I’ll be in Cornwall. That seems like a good enough reason to enter!
My first triathlon of the season is on Monday: May Day Tri. Stuart is in the first wave of the day at 8am and I’m in the 4th wave at 8:30am. I’m in a lane with 3 blokes aged 30-45, which seems to be a competitive age, so I’m hoping that I’ll be OK. Some of my friends are much faster than me and they’re in later waves, so I’m not sure how the waves have been allocated. In the afternoon, my niece is taking part in her first triathlon, so we’ll stay to cheer her on, which will be fun. She’s a brilliant swimmer and is in her school cross-country team, so I’m sure she’ll be able to hold her own.
What I’ve been reading this week
- Bike Washing Machine combines cycling with laundry
- Self deprecation and the female cyclist
- Exercise brings me friends, happiness and health. It’s not about losing weight.
- A list of don’ts for women on bicycles (circa 1895)
Finally, following the perpetuation of unattainable physiques by Protein World, it was refreshing to see this fantastic video by my favourite female endurance sportswear brand SOAS:
If you watch closely, you might see a familiar face at 1:20!