The Scribbler

27 November 2009

In which I ramble on about swimming

Filed under: run,swim — The Scribbler @ 19:31
Tags: , ,

I haven’t blogged much about swimming. I think it’s because I haven’t got it yet. I’m still struggling to get the pattern of breathing and moving right in front crawl.

I’ve taken some lessons and they’ve really helped. First of all to get me over the totally irrational and instinctive panic I had when trying to breathe with my head in the water and then demonstrating the right way to swim front crawl.

So now I’m at the stage where I know what I need to do, but my body just hasn’t caught up with the theory yet. And it’s been incredibly frustrating at times. There was one session where I really thought quite loud and clear in the front of my brain, ‘I’m not going to get this.’ But then I thought even louder and angrier that I wasn’t going to let it beat me either.

Part of that confidence comes from my experience of running. I thought the same thing about running too at the start. It was so hard. So many things to think about – breathing, rolling through your feet, not overdoing the arms, breathing, trying to stay relaxed, not bringing your shoulders up, trying not to favour one side more than another, breathing, keeping it smooth, hips pointing forward, breathing.

When I started running, it was for fitness. My first goal was to run for 20 minutes and that was hard. I didn’t really blog much about that either. Which kind of makes it hard to remember now.

So that’s why I wanted to try and start making sense of the swimming. So that I can look back and track my progress.

Last weekend I got in the pool after a session in the gym, so I was already a bit tired. Which was good, because it meant I swam more slowly. I also tried out a swimming cap for the first time and that helped too, keeping my hair out of my face and stopping me having to wrestle with bobbles, clips and goggles all wanting to be in the same space. Breathing out into the water felt better most of the time too. Although I still tend to hold my breath when my face is in the water.

The problem is stringing it all together. I seem to be able to relax for one or two lengths (and we’re only talking about a 20 metre pool here), but then lose the rhythm on the third one. I only managed to string together 4 lengths in any one attempt, and the last one was a bit scrappy.

I also tried swimming the way the way I used to with my head half way out of the water, really using my arms and legs to push myself along. And I could feel how inefficient and slow it was. How it would tire me out over some distance. It’s how most people swim in a pool.

So I’m hoping swimming properly will be like running. Given time and repetition it will fall into place and then I can start to build up the distance. I just keep telling myself that I never thought I’d be able to run 10k or 13.1 miles. But I did. I’m sure I can crack this swimming lark too.


Leave a Comment »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: