Today was the BLDSA’s Wykeham lakes swim and although I was entered, although I was there at the venue in time to register, although I’d had a brief dip yesterday and wanted to swim I did not start (DNS).
It’s the first time I’ve ever done that when it wasn’t fitness or injury that prevented me from starting. Today it was life that got in the way.
Yesterday I did a kayaking course at the Trafford Water Sports Centre (which I’ll blog about later). The early start and full day on (and partly in) the water meant I was tired by the end of it. However, I’d arrange to stay with a friend in York to make me closer to Wykeham – which is just down the road from Scarborough – so I drove over there. But it was to be no quiet night in. Instead my friends had an 80s night to go out to, so I went along with them.
If I’d been determined to swim I’m sure I could have drank less, got to bed earlier and generally been more committed to the whole exercise. But I wasn’t. I decided to relax and spend time with friends that I’ve not seen properly for at least a year – and so this was the result:
It was a good night!
So I drove up to start, said hello to a few people and then left them all to their swim and drove home again.
I’m quite comfortable with that though. As I said before, I’m being more relaxed about my swimming at the moment and I’ve also got to spend the afternoon working in preparation for a busy week next week.
And this time I added a cheeky 1k afterwards.
And in fact, the laps were a little over 1k each – so total for the day was 6.6k.
After last week’s “meh” swim I was a little apprehensive about this one. If it was “meh” too then where would that leave me? Would I have to admit that I’d fallen out of love with swimming?
In the end I didn’t have to worry – I loved it.
I had a different strategy for food before the race (I just ate a lot more) and by the time the swim started I felt raring to go. The water was cool, but felt fresh and although visibility wasn’t great, it felt clean.
This week was a simple triangular course with three big (i.e. c. 6 feet tall) orange buoys to mark each turn. This meant that even I could see them as I was swimming towards them. So apart from the occasional wobble sighting was much easier this week. I felt comfortable and relaxed over the first three laps and then felt strong and quick over the last two as I pushed on quite hard – and this week I got out with a smile on my face.
Then to top it off about an hour and a bit after I got out of the 5k swim I got back in again to do the 1k event.
Swimming / Dry Robe selfie
I wanted to train myself to get back in after a strong swim and to get used to getting back into cold water even as I was feeling cold (and I did have a few minutes of the shivers after the 5k swim). Stood on the bank I still wasn’t sure right until the last minute, but once we started swimming again and I loved it all over again. I also got to try out my new dry robe – which I wore between the swims and then got changed “inside” at the end.
A great day all round, then as a final boost I saw a Barn Owl in flight next to the road as I was driving home along the A64 – it just looked majestic.