Swimming lesson 2 was last Saturday, and it was just as good as the first, if not perhaps better - and I think I know the fundamental reason why. I'm not 100 per cent sure, but I think I know.
I left the house earlier than usual, as I wanted to get to the gym first and give myself a miniature beasting. This came in the shape of 20 minutes on the treadmill; 20 minutes is, for some reason, my first goal in terms of continuous running, it's the point at which you can think, I can run outside now. So I tried it, and I nailed it with plenty to spare. Sure, it was hard, but it was a happy hard. And that is not a euphemism.
The I jumped in the car and drove to my lesson, which is maybe a 25-minute drive.
The lesson was much easier. Much, much easier. I warmed up with some breaststroke lengths, he got me to work on my kick/glide, I think it came down to about 18 kicks to cover 50 metres. And it felt good. Then we did front crawl, and I did a length for the first time; I almost did another later in the lesson, too. So I was pretty chuffed, you know?
Monday rolls around, and I get down the pool; I was a bit late, so I didn't get into the gym first, but I got into the pool, did a couple of breaststroke lengths, then tried a crawl and… Nothing. Couldn't hit a length if I was on fucking fire. In the pool.
What I am thinking is, Saturday was good because I not only worked well before we moved on to crawl, but I also got my heart rate right up beforehand. It's kind of like calibration, getting my body ready for the worst that can happen. But I have to get really out of breath and beyond it, to move into the anaerobic breathing space, before I can swim even reasonably well.
I have a deadline right now, but Fern has very kindly said I can work late and go to the pool straight from work. I have my gym kit, so tonight we put that to the test. I will be very surprised indeed if it is not the case. Maybe I need to work out how I can reach that stage in the pool, but I can't help but think that I will be able to do exactly that once I can front crawl for more than a few seconds… Is this a vicious circle??
Oh, but my time for a length now I am kicking better is around 45 seconds, which feels kind of respectable. Which if I can maintain it, would give me a 24-minute half mile, 48-ish minute mile, 53 minutes-ish for 1.2 miles. Which is way below the cutoff time of 1 hour and 10 minutes. So there's that. But I want to do this, and I can't let a few shitty sessions set me back.
PS: Still not been on bike – had very high winds here, so fuck that shit. Maybe tomorrow?