Went for 420… only did 300….

So today’s swimming did not go to plan. It was going well until I had to leave the pool for 30 minutes about a third into my lengths because a little girl had been sick in the pool. My muscles tightened up and cooled down so when I got back into the pool it was unbearable.

The photographer James turned up around 2pm and spent a good hour doing action shots and head on portrait photos. To be fair James did an AMAZING job and you can see the photos below:

2013-03-30 - Farnworth Pool Training Photos (1)

2013-03-30 - Farnworth Pool Training Photos (2)

2013-03-30 - Farnworth Pool Training Photos (3)

2013-03-30 - Farnworth Pool Training Photos (4)

After the photos it was about 3pm and I wasn’t going to get 120 done so I decided to get out to save my energy and treat the wife tonight for her Mother’s Day surprise special at Kilhey Court, the place we got married (inc. meal, hotel, massage)

Swimming open water breaststroke – again recommended against this

I joined a Facebook Great North Run Beer Tent discussion forum today for Great North Run but I ended up speaking to a lady about doing breaststroke fro the Great Swim.

She advised against this told me to practice front crawl.
After a bit of research it is advised that you will feel the cold more and if it’s windy you’ll be getting mouthfuls of water. The wetsuit will also make you more buoyant making it harder to breaststroke kick and pull underwater.

A website advises to get in an outdoor pool asap with a wetsuit. Told to try side breathing (like front crawl) “Lots of leisure swimmers swim breaststroke in wetsuits at my local Open Water venue with no problems…. best to try it out first to avoid a nasty surprise on the day”

Basically try ASAP and if disastrous LEARN front crawl ASAP!

The lady gave me the name and email address of a contact from ActiveBlu.co.uk who does coaching for swimming etc and I asked her advice.

Personal Professional Photographer???

Damn right! Suzanne, my wonderful sister in law who not only got the ball rolling to get me on Chorley FM, she’s also put me in touch with a professional photographer James Sanderson who’s keen to get involved. Already he’s promised to come down Sunday to take pics at Farnworth pool so I’m truely blessed to have such great contacts I can now call upon for professional services.

So that’s Bolton News taking pics tomorrow and James on Sunday. Wow!

Chorley FM Live Studio Interview Pencilled In

Barbara Lowe, a radio presenter at Chorley FM has been working hard on getting me on a radio show to promote the challenges.

She has managed to arrange for me to come into the studio next Tuesday (1st April) for a LIVE interview with Jason Conrad at 6:30pm.

I’m so grateful to have such wonderful people allowing me to do these things.

The Bolton News are writing an article about The Challenges

BoltonNewsFeatureI spoke to Liam from The Bolton News this morning and he was massively interested in everything to do with the challenges.

They also want to meet up with me on Thursday at Horwich Leisure Centre before my swim training and take some photos of me in the pool for the article.

What’s even more amazing is that they promised that they will promote not just the two swimming challenges but also promote the other three (C2C2C, Tough Mudder, Great North Run) in the newspaper each time on the run up to each one! How about that!?!

Could not be more grateful or made up at the moment. The media publicity and support has been unbelievable.

340 Lengths Completed

Had 4 pints and half a bottle of wine last night…. had to be done….. United won for the second time in a row and I just needed a beer…. and a spicy curry…. (note to self – no more spicy curries the night before a huge swim).

Even still, I woke up fresh, got my swimming plan done, energy drinks made, loaded up on carbs, shaking with energy ready to go….. get to the Horwich Leisure Centre….. Closed due to the Sports Relief Swimathon???

Luckily, the helpful lady at the desk called all of the leisure centres around and found Farnworth Leisure Centre was open and available for the 4 hours needed to do the distance training.

I went unsure what to expect but Farnworth Leisure Centre is GREAT! It’s clean, the changing rooms are fantastic and the pool had lots of room to swim, even on a “busy day” as they had the Swimathons on too.

I spoke to lots of people who were interested in what I was doing, received a lot of excellent feedback and good lucks 🙂

The swim went really well, my energy wasn’t too terrible as I’m learning to take the energy drinks at the right time, every 10 mins when I was really feeling the drain. I spent a bit more time having breaks between each section including talking to people, taking toilet breaks and making up more drinks. I was still completely exhausted though and can sympathise with Angela with having a quarter of a husband for the rest of the day.

Warm Up First Sub-Section Main Section Second Sub-Section Cool Down
Lengths 50 60 120 60 50
Pace 60% 80% See Below 70% 60%
Minutes 50 44 79 51 50
Actual 31 38 74 43 34
Main Section 1 Main Section 2 Main Section 3 Main Section 4
Lengths 30 30 30 30
Minutes 25 25 25 25
Actual 17 18 19 20
Pace 80% 80% 80% 80%

20140323_090453_Rotherhead Close 20140323_094132_Squirrel Ln 20140323_161911_Leicester Ave

I found the swim a lot easier and it went a lot quicker than the 280 length swim I did last Sunday. It was a bit surreal seeing all of the people doing swimathons and the support they were getting from family and friends who came down to support them.

I celebrated in my head when I went over the 300 and 333 lengths milestones! 420 next week and I’m going to Farnworth again because I was really impressed. Plus I found out that the pool is open 9am to 4pm which is 7 hours, probably enough to do the 600 lengths practice swim but still not enough to do the 800 practice swim.

I’m starting to feel really confident now, actually believing I can do A Thousand Lengths in several weeks!

I went on Tower FM LIVE to promote the challenges

This morning I received a call from TowerFM saying they want me put me on as their Twit Face of the day! Basically the feature consists of three songs and then someone comes on to promote a cause and leave a Facebook or Twitter link so that people can find out more information. What was also amazing was the show was also being played live on WireFM, PeakFM and WishFM, covering areas of Warrington, Wigan as well as Bolton.

I got that call around 8:00am so from then until 11:10am I was on tenterhooks planning what I was going to say and hoping that I would be clear and get everything out I wanted.


Clip Length: 5 mins 12 secs

Click the speaker icon to listen

I laugh now about during the interview when Tony, the presenter referred to the first challenge calling it a “Swim” and I had to make sure that I linked back at some stage to promote the “1,000 lengths” challenge – luckily I did.

Cannot be more thankful for TowerFM allowing me the time to promote this. Also cannot believe they also said they will allow me to come back to promote it closer to the time. I reckon I’ll be promoting the 1,000 length challenge and C2C2C challenge as they are the toughest and the ones which I hope will generate the most money for the charities.