Like a pig to water

Water is not my natural habitat, I’m confident enough in the water, happy to be there, but I’m distinctly lacking in any real skill or grace. I lack the coordination needed to move 4 limbs at the same time in a way that is conducive to efficient forward movement. I’m so right side orientated that my left arm just flops over in an awkward ark before splashing into the water and attempting to perform a good pull.


There is so much to think about when you’re swimming, which is probably why I enjoy running so much. With running you can switch your brain off and just enjoy your surroundings while your body moves your legs and arms perfectly in motion. In fact you run better when you do this rather than trying to think about what you’re doing. ¬†Which is the complete opposite of swimming where you have to focus almost 100% of the time on your stroke to stop it falling apart. Or at least I do, maybe one day it’ll become second nature but for now the conversation going on in my brain while swimming goes something like this:


It’s speedo time

That’s it, first swim of triathlon training done and amazingly I didn’t ache too much, just a little bit of stiffness in my neck. I managed to swim a whole 30 lengths (not in one go clearly) without needing lifeguard assistance or weaving across my lane. Personally I’d call that a success.

I’ve always swum, in fact in my early teens we used to go every Friday for a swim and then we’d eat chips in the car on the way home (reverse carbo loading). But I’d never really call myself a swimmer, competent enough but not fast or particularly talented. But given that the only swimming I’ve done in the last 2 years is splashing around in the pool with the children I was actually pleasantly surprised with my technique and strength.

I’m sure if I saw a video of my swimming it probably wouldn’t be very pretty, but in my head at least I was living the mantra of ‘think long and smooth’. I just need to train my left arm to work properly, it seems to just swing over and land in the water with a very ungainly splash.