Sunday 8 May 2011

The Noble Fish

I am 7 days in on my swimathon (26 miles in 26 days) and by the end of today, I shall have swam 10 miles. I used to run 10 miles in a week, so swimming them does make me think this challenge is getting more and more impressive the further I go into it.

It started well on a Bank Holiday Monday. I nearly had the pool to myself and between the first two miles (I wanted to get ahead early) I could enjoy the massaging bubbles of the jacuzzi. My body is now at the point where it needs slightly more than bubbles, but I am happy to have that and the sauna to use after pounding the... no Laura, you can't pound the pool, like you pound the streets. What would it be? Glide the pool? Front crawl the pool? Hmmm, they don't quite sound as cool or as difficult, do they?

I then decided it was time to get some early swims in. Thank goodness it's May and not November. At 6am, it's light, quiet and, more importantly, hasn't been cold this week. Flip flops on, a brisk walk to the pool, and I am slipping into the water (alone, it's just for me!) at 6.30 once they've turned on the lights.

I did that three days this week: showered and taken a take-away cuppa on the tube, arriving at the office with almost dry hair and a hunger for breakfast. All before 8.30.

"I wouldn't be here if I didn't have to be," one of the sports centre workers said to me as I finished another mile on Wednesday morning. We laughed about it, but then I told her about, when you start so early and get to the office having done some exercise, having (oh, all right then) glided that pool for a mile, you feel like you've already achieved something before being paid to. While everyone else has been dumbing themselves with Daybreak and scoffing rice krispies and they arrive with their heads still fuzzy from the start of a new day, you are there; awake, refreshed, energetic and noble.

"Noble?" she asked. She thought about it. "Yeah, I like it. It is quite noble." And she went off to nobly use the treadmill.

So, now I am the noble fish; still lonely in my endeavours, but getting stronger with each stroke and every length closer to my goal.

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