Last night I’d pretty much lost count after my fourth celebratory “well-earned” drink (cheers guys!) and was surprised to wake up hangover-free this morning; I believe it was the midnight snack of Nutella on toast that saved me. Today has been one of those glorious lazy days where it’s perfectly acceptable to be in your pyjamas until midday and have biscuits with every single cup of tea, just because it’s Sunday. Even more acceptable when you have achy shoulders but a shiny medal to show for it.
Those of you who know me well will know that I get nervous about pretty much anything (new job, a presentation, sometimes even before nights out in a weird kind of nervous-excited way) and so I was pacing up and down my hallway yesterday morning, moving from room to room in the house trying to figure out what I could be doing to whittle away the couple of hours I had before I had to hit the pool. In true OCD style, I decided that doing the housework while listening to Kisstory was about the only thing that was going to calm my nerves in a strange, therapeutic way. As annoying as it is though, nerves give me the adrenaline rush I need in order for me to concentrate on doing something, some would call it unnecessary pressure but I know I care about something if I worry slightly over it. A slight admission there into one of my little habits.
Habit number two- when I’m nervous, I become even more clumsy than usual. In the changing room, I was all fingers and thumbs as I attempted to put my hat and goggles on:
Drop the talcum powder.
Drop the hat.
Goggles…goggles? Where the hell are my goggles?!
One bite of a Nutrigrain bar.
Drop my water bottle on my foot.
Have a fight with the changing room door and my sports bag.
Hit my arm on the locker door as it closes.
And then almost slip over on the wet tiles as I make my way to my lane with Eye of the Tiger playing in the background gently mocking me.
During the ten minutes of our warm-up, all I kept thinking about was whether I’d flake out during my 5K and left gasping like a goldfish on the poolside. However, like my own advice that I dish out in pretty much every single one of my blog posts, I decided to take a dose of my own medicine and as cheesy as it may sound, basically told myself that You. Can. Do. This.
I always wanted to complete the 5K within 2 hours and although I told myself, that I wouldn’t be disappointed if I didn’t manage to do it within that time because of course completing the challenge in itself was an accomplishment, I was absolutely determined to do so.
And so, I completed my 5K Swimathon Challenge in 01:53:02!
Massive thank you to all of you who wished me luck yesterday, who’ve sponsored and supported me during my training and of course, to all of my friends and family who came out last night to celebrate with me. Thank you especially to my parents who came to spur me on and my brother who was my designated ‘spotter’ and kept me going when I began to feel tired.
At one point, I could feel my hands just smacking the top of the water as it became an effort to put one arm over the other, I could feel my pulse in my head, my throat felt raw through my breathing and one misjudged tumble-turn had resulted in a rope burn from the lane dividers. Hearing my bro shout at me “10 more lengths!” was my last bit of encouragement for me to sprint to the end. Even though my legs felt like jelly, my goggles had left a comedic imprint on my silly, grinning face and MGMT “Kids,” was playing as I finished, it felt awesome to have accomplished my challenge within the time that I’d aimed for while raising money for a worthy cause.
If you fancy getting involved next year whether you want to do the 1.5K, 2.5K or 5K as an individual or in a team, you can register your interest for the 2014 Swimathon on their website. Whether you want to challenge yourself or use it as an incentive for fitness regime, it’s all worth it to raise money for such an amazing charity.
Its already made me think of other challenges that I can take on and although I wouldn’t be able to do anything like the London Marathon within the near foreseeable future, something like that is definitely on my bucket-list but y’know, one step at a time!
Sunday night fear is starting to creep in but it’s been another brilliant weekend and no matter what life throws at you, it’s these brilliant weekends that make the best memories.