Sport hasn’t ever been my thing. I’ve got zero hand eye coordination, I can’t run, I’m not bendy, and I’m asthmatic. There are a lot of things against me. I went to swim school, I did dance lessons for a while as a kid, and until very recently, I loved my horse riding lessons, but that’s about it really. So when you’re embarking on the adventure that is your Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award, if you’re anything like me, you hit a bit of a stump with the ‘physical’ section.
I looked into horse riding, but I’ve only recently stopped, I can’t go back to where I used to go, and the other place nearby doesn’t do things that interest me. I am definitely not the correct person to take up dance. So that’s it then, I’ve got to swim. For six months. It took a bit of working up to, but eventually my best friend offered to go with me, and we set off on the first weekend full of hope.
‘So, eight laps of breaststroke to warm up?’ – I only managed half an hour that week. I got out of the pool hardly breathing, and I very nearly fainted. I swum 33 lengths. That’s when she told me she used to be captain of the county swimming team. I didn’t quite know how I was ever going to do this every week for six months!
This week I’ve just completed week five. I’m still not managing to swim for an hour yet, but I have redeveloped a love of the water. I get out of the pool now, I’m happy and satisfied. This week I swam 40 lengths in that same half an hour, and went on to swim another ten before getting out. That’s fifty lengths in 37 minutes. Talk about improvement!
I have another motivation now. If I can total 12 hours, I’ll have also finished my Chief Guides Challenge for Rangers, something that I desperately want to do before I go to Uni. Over the next nineteen weeks however, I don’t just want to bring my total up to 12 hours, I also want to swim the distance of the channel (that’s 1416 lengths in total). I want to be fitter, I want to be able to swim for longer, and although I can’t predict how many lengths I will be able to swim in one go by the end, I’d like to think that it will be at least 100.
Ill let you know how it goes.
Living. Loving. Laughing.