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Fun swims, nutrition changes & physio issues

It’s been a funny old week. The sea has been wild, huge bouncy waves together with constant rain, the latter making rivers out of bounds as they are in flood and have off-wash from the fields too. I feel unsafe sometimes in big waves, it depends if they are the big, sucking, pulling waves, or just big dumping waves. I opted for a garden bath for my first dip this week, with two sea dips later on. The waves were still big and powerful, and I didn’t go out far. With my sore tricep I don’t have the strength to battle with swimming in big waves, so I just enjoy jumping up and down in them instead - in company with good friends of course!

My first sea dip of the week took place in the company of John Lester, my coach, his partner Alison and two other swimmers, Nicola and Karen. As we were getting undressed to go in the water I heard Nicola and Alison laughing hysterically, and as I turned to see what they were laughing at, I glimpsed some pink underwear on John...yep....he was wearing a bikini in solidarity with me for my challenge. Hilarious! Such a good sport. Alison and Nicola also donned bikinis, which I am so grateful for, as bikinis aren’t exactly what most of us feel comfortable wearing. The Open Water Swimming community has really come out in force to support me with my challenge, people coming out of their comfort zones and wearing their bikinis. You won’t meet a community more up for crazy challenges than this lot!

I took my dad Christmas shopping this week to get his present for mum. Every birthday and Christmas for the 40 years they have lived in this town he has gone to the same jewellers and bought her a gift. That’s 80 presents. (Just in case you’ve been on the wine early and needed assistance with that calculation). My dad is a well known eccentric (luckily that particular gene has missed a generation...🤔😬) and he loves nothing more than a banter with people in shops. I think the pair of us frightened the living daylights out of one poor lad behind the counter, as I tried to pay with various bank cards of dads (which he can’t see due to his eyesight, or rather lack of), before dad announced his PIN number to all and sundry. We then realised that I was wrapped up like a mummy but we’d forgotten to put his mask on, (poor lad jumped 10 feet when I shrieked in realisation), which promptly broke just as we reached the front of the Q for the jewellers. A quick dash into the neighbouring hair salon to beg a face mask - that they gladly gave. We tottered and chuckled our way around the town, dad pleased as punch with his bag of gifts. My dad has given me the humour to get through pretty much anything really, a good laugh sets you up for the rest of the day.

As does now knowing his PIN number 😉😬

I have also started my new diet, as planned by Pip August, my nutritionist. I filled in a weekly food diary and she made some suggestions to start overhauling my diet. I don‘t exactly eat terribly, but getting the right balance of foods is something I am lazy at. I haven‘t done as much exercise this week as I normally do, but we all have weeks like that.

As for my physio, well that was going really well for 10 days and then suddenly two days ago my left tricep started hurting just like it did at the beginning. It’s very hard not to become despondant, and to believe that it will ever get stronger, but today it felt better again. Just have to keep on going, little by little. I currently do 40 minutes of physio every day. I am determined to get there, I really miss swimming, but also I NEED to get better to swim the Channel! So I will. I’ll keep on going, keep on with my exercises and I will get there. I will.

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