Swim the Big Blue – What a month!
What a month!
Training has been growing in intensity as we count down the 180 days until the big swim launches! We have notched the volume down a gear to 10-16km swims, at a reasonable pace – let’s say 5th gear, cruising pace, yet adding in swims of 8-10km at a faster pace, like a car in 2nd or 3rd gear also, looking to sustain 1:50/100m over 10-12km for the faster morning sessions, during the swim itself. On top of this is the core and stability training in the gym, and of course this is back in the UK, where I have been cooling down from the Ocean swims off of Florida where sharks, jelly-fish and realistic conditions pushed me to my limits: this is hard, incredibly tough. Rotations and strengthening in shoulders, plank work (front and side), rolling and stretching daily, and band work for elbows, arms and shoulders 3 x per week. Be under no illusions, this is pushing me to my limits; sweat, tears and pain – it does not get easier and I do not give up.
With food consumption at 7,500 calories per day – this journey continues to be hard but rewarding. Especially, as we ready the boat and continue to give talks in schools, and W/c 15th June, we will see three-schools in Gloucestershire actively participating in week long swim and active challenges to raise funds for the charity and our expeditions, supported with great goodies from Arena as prizes!
Either side of this I will be in Florida, Key West training hard with my shark and swim safety team Nekton where we are building up for a large PR swim end of July/beginning of August. Meanwhile, I continue to eat 7,500 calories per day on full training week and currently I am experimenting with shakes for refuel during a swim. It looks something like this for one bottle (obviously there are sessions where I have 2 plus hydration bottles plus shake bottles):
1 Scoop Peanut butter
1 x Banana
1 x Scoop of chocolate spread
1 x 25g Whey Protein
500ml of water and milk (1:2)
There are days where I question what I am doing. Especially, when my shoulders and lower back hurt so much I want to cry, or I feel so sick from peanut butter and 8 hours in chlorine pool or the mental side of simply wanting a day off from everything kicks in – it is a fight. But when I see my daughter getting all fired up, local school children jumping with excitement when they realise what I am embarking on and of course the good I can achieve for my charities as I aim to raise £1million; I know I can do this; I will succeed and it doesn’t matter what your challenge is, swim a meter, mile or marathon – you can do it!
“Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even.”
Back to Key West, Florida, sun, sea and training shortly – see you soon.
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