Saturday, 8 November 2014

First Sunday Swim at Clifton

Sunday was a beautiful day at Clifton. The water was a good 14 degrees. On Saturday I swam at Bloubergstrand and the water was so cold ( I think 11 degrees), I sat in the steam room at Virgin Active Sunningdale till I felt that my brain started to function again. So the "warmer" water was a wonderful surprise. I still needed my hotwater bottle afterwards and my down jacket but by the time we reached Houtbaai I was fine.

A mile is a long swim. It give you time to cycle through a lot of thoughts, although I try to stay mindful and concentrate on every stroke. Thoughts like: "this is quite far", "when will I start to see the turn around buyo" was crossing my mind on the swim out. When I turned thoughts like "O it is so nice a pity it will be over in a while", was crossing my mind as I near the end.

A Canoe race left the beach before we start swimming and they return when our race was over so we were not in each others' way. It brought a lot of extra people to the beach and a festive atmosphere. The first Sunday of the month swim is a must on every serious open water swimmer's calender.

My family went with me. I am always thankful for their support. I know I cannot drive  after the event and when the water is very cold I do need support when I get out. Luckily on this beautiful day I was fine.

We went to the Houtbaai market and had a lovely early lunch there. I am always hungry after my swims and the cheese bread was a wonderful starting point for the meal. We shared Pizza, springrolls and a meat dish between us.
Some other people enjoying the market as well
My time for the swim was 33 minute 23 seconds, about 3 minutes better than the October swim. I realise that one cannot really compare races, buyos might not be placed so accurately and the sea is different with every swim. I am fitter though having practiced four days a week at least through October. I am swimming 3 km at every practice now and will increase the distance during November

In October I swam a total of 48 km. Starting with 4 km the first week and 6 in the second week then 10, 13 and 15 km in the following weeks. I am concentrating on lengthening my stroke while moving at a slightly faster pace now. I hope this will increase the speed that I swim at.

Enjoy your swim!

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