Finding inspiration by Jon Greenwood #Teamselkie
30th July 2018
It’s been a strange year training wise to this point : for the first time in many years I hadn’t set myself a major goal in terms of swimming events. Concentrating on getting stronger on dry land had left me somewhat rudderless in terms of direction in the water. It was unexpected, the lack of training in the water over the winter had left me playing serious catch up in all senses of the word as I got back into open water in late April. A long winter had seen river temperatures plummet and the river was uninviting and with no real goal for the season in place, motivation was really low. A few sporadic shortish swims followed through May and I was struggling to find any enjoyment again being in the river.
Then things changed in late May / early June, probably due, in part, to this wonderful summer we are experiencing. I was starting to get my mojo back and seeing my Selkie teammates doing amazing things in the water and a couple of my friends from Henley open Water Swimming Club getting me in the water helped get things moving again.
The catalyst happened in June, spending a couple of days at Queenford Lakes and Clifton Hampden with a bunch of my very talented and wonderfully inspirational Selkie teammates. New friendships formed and older ones revisited, I’d fallen in love with open water again and I was happy to be swimming, not as fast as I was last year by any stretch, but I was in there. And I was happy to be in there with a couple of good friends in wonderful parts of the river and that was enough.
A couple of weeks ago we were offered a place at one of the Henley Swim events. The inevitable “should I/shouldn’t I” followed and in the end I took up the offer and I will now be swimming the Thames Marathon, with very little training in place, and no expectation in terms of time either. Swim, be comfortable in the water and give it my best shot is all I have in my mind. I’m looking forward to it. The decision was helped by a couple of my new found Selkie teammates swimming it also, and in a similar place to me in terms of preparation to this point.
Just keep swimming and enjoy being amongst some really incredible people – it is a great motivator and it’s very inspirational.