Friday, 29 July 2016

Lock to Lock Swims

The other swim events that I have done this year have been the Swim Oxford Lock to Lock Swims.  They are a new company who launched with a 4k swim last year which Super H did and really enjoyed.  This year they are running a 4k, 6k and 10k event.  As the events start less than 10 minutes drive from JKS HQ, it seems silly not to enter!

The first event was the 4k in mid June.  This involved swimming from Eynsham Lock down to Kings Lock. I felt a bit frustrated as I couldn't keep up with the front pack and was quite some way from the second pack so it was quite a lonely swim.  I was also still suffering from a chest infection and had to stop to cough my lungs up a couple of times.  On the plus side, armed with my prescription swimming goggles, I was able to sight around the bends of the river very easily.  There had been an enormous amount of rain in the week prior to the event and the river was flowing incredibly fast.  So much so that I was actually surprised to be being ushered out at the finish!  I doubt very much I'll ever swim 4k in under 52 minutes again...  I was pleased to discover later that I was the 3rd woman to finish (although there was only a prize for first).

In mid July it was back for the 6k event.  This time we started in the same place at Eynsham Lock and began with the same 4k stretch of the river.  I felt incredibly lethargic on this swim and found it hard to feel like I was going at the pace I wanted to.  There were more faster swimmers than on the previous 4k and it was hard not to feel disheartened.  As the river wasn't flowing quite so fast, it took a little longer to reach Kings Lock, but only a couple of minutes.  Then it was out of the river for about 200m walk past the lock to get back in and finish off.  On the walk, I was able to catch up with the group of swimmers that I'd been trying to catch up with all swim, and then had some company for the last leg, which really helped.  The final leg was *very* short, there was absolutely no way that that was another 2k.  The swimmer who got out ahead of me had 5.25k on her watch which sounded more realistic.  (Super H did manage to achieve 6k on her watch, but she's not always the best at sighting!).  This time I was 6th back.

All in all very well organised and friendly.  The organiser recognised me (presumably from facebook) before the 6k and said hello and then remembered my name when I got out at the 4k mark.  I don't really eat cake (Mr JKS ate mine) but there is a huge array of amazing looking cake at the finish and very cheerful ladies serving it who give everyone a cheer as they finish.  There was also peppermint tea and bananas and I got a jelly baby at the get out point of the 6k.

I really need to get some longer swims in ahead of the 10k.  Obviously I'm totally capable of 10k but I have not really been swimming further than 4k recently and I'd like to have the stamina so that I can properly enjoy it!

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