This morning I got up nice and early (6am … and on a Sunday!) to get ready and set off to Ponds Forge to take part in a 10k swim event. And despite the early start it was great fun.
We started with an 8:30am briefing pool side – we were split up into 6 different lanes, based on our expected finish times, with each lane having a maximum of 5 swimmers in (we had 4 in our lane). Following the briefing I got changed and got ready poolside – and suddenly we were off, I’d hardly had time to put my goggles on straight.
The first thing that struck me was how great it was to swim in a 50m pool – my local pool is 25m and I’ve only been in a 50m pool on a couple of occasions previously. It felt great just to be able to swim, without worrying about the wall almost as soon as you’ve set off.
I was the 4th person away in our lane – we all set off with a 10-second gap – but I’d soon caught and overtook the people in front. However, that turned out to be nothing more than over excitement as we all seemed to swim at a very similar pace for the rest of the event. In fact about the only time positions changed was when someone stopped to take a drink.
My plan was to take a quick drink every 30 minutes. As much as anything else, this was a test for me to see how I need to refuel and how the breaks affect my swimming and how the fuel itself works with my body. That said, I ignored the plan for the very first stop!
I was enjoying the swimming too much and 45 minutes had elapsed before I’d even realised. I did stop then though – and every 30 minutes after that.
Then it was just a case of getting the head down and swimming. My body coped well – apart from quite severe cramps in my legs on occasions (I’m hoping that cold water and no turns will help this – but I’m also going to add an electrolyte drink to the refuelling plan).
I had hoped to finish with 3hrs 45mins, but in the end I smashed that target and finished in 3hrs 30mins 7secs (or 3:30:19 according to my watch as I forgot to stop it immediately).
A job well done.
However, on top of a great swim, it was also fantastic to see Maureen (Mo) from iSwimmer in real life too. We’ve been “blog buddies” for a while, so it was great to meet up – and with her friend Sally. Great swimming and thanks for pointing me to this event Mo.