Monday, 13 June 2011

Thick and Fast

The children returned to school last Monday after the the final break of the educational year, albeit will soon be the six week summer holidays. This allowed for a little more training as I continue along the road (or stepping stones as I prefer to call them), enroute to the goals for 2011.

I have developed quite a good relationship with Joe Hunter (EC Sept 2011) and together we have been swimming and laughing at the 'resort' of Seaton Carew near Hartlepool, the water up North is a little cooler than that of the English Channel therefore the time spent on the sessions is obviously nowhere near that of Freda's gang at Dover. That said, we have been making some excellent progress whilst shuffling our everyday work and family issues.

Monday 6 June 1hr 15mins @ 54f/55f
Tuesday 7 June 1hr 35mins @ 53f/54f
Thursday 8 June 1hr 25mins@ 53f

Sandettie shows the Channel in the region of 57f so this is good training for Joe (he recently swam the Eton 10km in 3h:38m and has had a three hour swim at Dover and five hours at Ellerton)

Meanwhile on Saturday I travelled together with KGB, Charlie and Lottie to the Lake District in order to meet with Andy Williams, the purpose of the rendezvous was to have a test swim to assess our pace and to discuss some of the finer details of the planned 2 Way Windermere. We were invited by Thomas Noblett to base ourselves at the delightful Langdale Chase where we were allowed full use of his swimming facilities including kayaks, jetty, changing areas etc.

Andy and I swam for an hour (59f /15c) from the Jetty at the hotel to Holme Crag, accompanied by his wife Ruth in her own sit on kayak, therefore our safety was never an issue, afterwards we warmed up in the the sunshine overlooking the lake from the beautiful hotel grounds where we were spoilt by Thomas providing us fresh coffee with scones, whipped cream and jam..heaven! After some navigation talk and general planning we left for a few hours in Ambleside before the usual 100 mile drive home, before I end this piece I should say a massive thank you to KGB for her continued support and to Thomas who could not have done more to assist....Top man.

Once home I broke most of the pre swim event rules by having a few glasses of red wine, a large hot curry and a late night (for me) watching Forrest Gump..I say pre swim as Sunday I was entered in the BLDSA Wykeham Championships.

Rising early enough to try and fail to eat breakfast, I drove the 65 miles or so towards Scarborough whilst Charlie spent some time with Grandad, it was lovely and sunny with just a little breeze, far better than the prediction. On arrival it was great to see Mark Blewitt, Nuala (Stop Talking) Muir-Cochrane, El Capitan Mark Pashby and his trusty side kick Darren as well as Jo and Amanda from Ellerton who were competing in their first BLDSA event.

I was keen to get started and return home to Charlie and was therefore a little disappointed with delayed start time,  however the 5 laps each of 1000m were soon underway, the conditions were good with the water at 60f/15.5c a little surface chop but nothing like the sea. My goal as with all of these events is firstly to finish and secondly to endeavour to complete in somewhere near to last years time of 1h:41m:12s, (the course is plotted using GPS to ensure accuracy), I was very pleased and surprised to complete my 5km in 1h:37m:45s so age has not taken too much out of me........yet. Thanks to all the safety paddlers and to Dee and Liane for running the show.

Congratulations to Amanda, Jo, Pash and Darren who all completed their swims.

As stated I was in a bit of a rush so departed prior to the awards ceremony, in fact, I was in so much of a rush that I left without my tracksuit bottoms, it was only a few miles up the road I realised I was in fact driving home in speedos with a towel around my waist (I am so pleased I didn't get pulled for speeding!)

The events seem to be coming thick and fast now with The Champion of Champions event this to finish and continue the Tanni GT vocalisation...I am hoping for 2h 50m 5 miles, 1h 40 3 miles, 35 mins 1 mile..fingers crossed.


Amanda Bell said...

Thoroughly enjoyed my first BLDSA swim which I would never have attempted had it not been for the encouragement and support from Mark, Joanna and many other swimmers at Ellerton. Also huge support and words of encouragement on the day from other swimmers. Thank you all.

Good luck next weekend at C of C Mark,and all other swimmers.

Joanna Charlton said...

Same thoughts as Amanda, it was a great event so well organised. Also yes, a big thanks to Mark to the introduction to the BLDSA world. Spoke to many swimmers, totally inspirational, just a great day and swim! Also as Amanda has mentioned good luck to all those who venture to the C of C! Look forward to the next blog

Dave said...

I glad you decided to put 'resort' in inverted commas when writing about Seaton Carew!

Good luck for the weekend.