Tuesday, 28 June 2016

A catch up on swimming

Well, this is supposed to be a swimming blog...so as promised a post to catch up a bit on my swimming.  Swimming was rather neglected earlier in the year - there were weeks when I wasn't even hitting 20km in the water - and I definitely felt a bit off my game.  Not surprising when my body was so tired from the marathon training!

Masters swimming
After the marathon, I joined the local masters club.  I'd wanted to join them before but they only had one session a week, which was 8-9pm on a weeknight, which just didn't work for me.  There is no way I would sleep after swimming that late at night!  However, this year they introduced a second session on a Sunday 6-7pm.  It happens 3-4 times a month (the other session in the month, the pool is used for lifeguard training) and in general I'm making it along 2-3 times a month.  It is a very quiet session, so plenty of coach attention.  We generally do a mixed strokes warm up of about 1k which is fun and different for me, and then we either do some stroke development (I totally loved the 2 weeks that we spent practising backstroke) or some front crawl fitness work.  I love having a bit of sociable swimming and even though I never feel like going out at 6pm on a Sunday night, I always come back having enjoyed it.  I think just a little bit of fitness work reminds me to swim faster and I feel like I'm noticing some improvements.

Start of the openwater swimming season
I haven't really done so much openwater swimming this season because there hasn't been a huge imperative for me to get in and get on with it.  I've been very busy and tired and so lie ins on Sunday mornings have been more important! I started my season by attempting a 3.8k swim at Box End at the end of April.  It was very cold and I decided to get out after 1.2k as it was just not sensible to continue and this year I have no need to absolutely push myself.  I was a bit grumpy because I am pretty sure that I could have completed a 1500m and I was overly cocky choosing the 3.8k!

Lake District swimming
In the lakes twice in the space of just over a fortnight and I was lucky enough to get in 3 amazing swims.  I had a lovely swim in Rydal Water in May. I'd never swum there before and it was simply incredible to be swimming in this lake all by myself surrounded by wonderful scenery (Mr JKS watched from the bank with the binoculars).  In June, Mr JKS and I did a nice swim in Coniston, crossing the lake and swimming to "Wild Cat Island" and back (probably about a mile in total).  The next day, I abandoned paddleboarding half way through the session to have a swim in Derwentwater which was also pretty good.  I'd like to swim the length of that at some point.

Lock to Lock 4k
Finally, I took part in this very local swim ten days ago.  It was pretty well organised and the fastest 4k I've ever swum, thanks to the gallons and gallons of water rushing down the river after all of the rain in the preceding week!  I came in at under 52 minutes and was very surprised to get to the end so fast, it didn't seem like nearly enough swimming.  I was 3rd woman back which was nice although a shame that there were only prizes for 1st!  I'm signed up to do the 6k in a couple of weeks and the 10k in September.

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