We were joined by 2012 Olympic swimmer, Rebecca Turner, who was absolutely charming and a very positive role model for young aspiring swimmers.
I had pledged to swim 1 mile (64 lengths) with a plan to increase this distance to 2km (80 lengths) if I felt good during the swim. I actually swam 2.5km (100 lengths) and would have swam a little further had my 7 year old son, who was lap-counting, hadn't got bored! I am really pleased with this, I never thought I was capable of swimming this kind of distance and it has made me seriously consider enering a two mile distance event in 2013....
My 8 year old daughter did an excellent job too, managing to swim 40 lengths, with Dylan! She raised more in sponsorship than I did, as most people sponsored her per length (and I expected her to swim 6-10 lengths!)
|The Aquatics Centre at Leeds|
|Rebeccca Turner signing swimming hats|
|Rebecca Turner and a couple of younger swimmers|
|The British Gas Team with Rebecca Turner|
Transitioning to running update! It is now 6 weeks and 1 day since I started running, following the couch to 5km running plan. Today I reached my target and ran continously to 5km! I am overjoyed, as I really never saw myself running, and I have loved every second of it. My 5km time was a very respectable 34 minutes and 10 seconds.
What next? Not sure. I found 5km hard going, so I have no plans to increase my distance again for a while. I have neglected my bike and I need to find some time to get back into the saddle, so I shall be reducing the number of runs per week to free up a bit more time.
I was trying to decide the other day how to compare cycling and running and the difference beween the two, in terms of how they make you feel and the enjoyment factor. It has surprised me how much I have enjoyed running, yet there is none of the adrenalin-big-grin-wahoooooo-feeling you get when you blast along a smooth bit of tarmac on your slicks, chasing 30mph! Cycling doesn't hurt my legs and doesn't make me have to think about my breathing, and I can get pretty far (escapism?!) in a short space of time. I hate doing the same route over and over and absolutely, never do out and back routes. This is pretty much the opposite of how I feel about running in every sense, yet I still love it and have very much chosen it over cycling in recent weeks. I don't like cycling in the cold, dark, wet... and I am very much a fair weather cyclist. I LOVE ambling along on a sunny evening, along the farm roads, watching the wildlife and the farmers tend to their crops. I love seeing the rabbits scurrying away as I approach and there is something so very enjoyable about being out on the road, by myself, on my bike.
I wonder if I will enjoy running as much when Summer approaches and it becomes hot, thirsty work. I haven't reached a conclusion on these musings, but I hope I can find a comfortable way to enjoy both at the same time(well, within the same week!) so my dream of doing a triathlon, can become a reality.
Then there is swimming. Doesn't really fall into comparison with cycling and running. Swimming allows you freedom in water, allows you to relax and mend aching muscles and it challenges you, every time you go for a new PB in either distance or speed. Swimming is my default.