Well today was the Big Day! and it almost went to plan! I had to retire at 830 lengths because my lungs were so sore from the constant breathing for 13 hours. The top and lower part of my breathing hurt incredibly which resulted in me breathing quicker in the mid-range. This resulted in me not getting the carbon dioxide out of my lungs consequently making me breathe faster and faster (AKA hyperventilating) causing more pain and dizzyness! Towards the end my breaks were taking longer and longer as I was needing more time to recover before getting back into the pool but at 830 lengths my breathing didn’t recover and in fact got worse – so I had to retire which was absolutely gutting!!
If I have to be honest, although the Horwich Leisure Centre have been amazing with setting up everything, making me comfortable on the day and providing me with so much support – it wasn’t really the ideal venue to do the 1,000 with hindsight. It was TOO warm as I stated in last week’s article (500 length Practice Swim) which resulted in me having to breathe more and cool down more often getting out of the pool. I completed 700 lengths at Manchester Aquatics Centre without any complications knowing perfectly I could have done 1,000 on that day but at 500 lengths in at Horwich Leisure Centre I knew something was wrong. My form was great, energy, muscles and everything – even my knee wasn’t too bad with the knee support I put on. But I knew my breathing was getting sore and I just hoped it wouldn’t get any worse – which unfortunately it did! After 830 and getting out of the pool, getting changed and sitting on a chair at the Leisure Centre entrance I realised I needed an ambulance. I was quite distressed to be fair and it took ages to be assessed seriously at Bolton Hospital until I was given some very strong painkillers to allow me to breathe properly.
BUT what was incredible was that my friends Danny and Karen decided to jump in the pool and finish off the 170 lengths swim with the lengths my brother Pete already did with me during the day!
The support I got throughout! WOW it was incredible. From charity members to friends and family – getting cheers and roars of encouragement and waves and smiles it absolutely helped me to even get to 830. Pete my brother did 150 lengths with me (his previous PB was 50!!). Tim Cromarty got in the pool with me and did some lengths and coached me and making me comfortable throughout! Suzy who organised everything including getting up early on the day to make sure I got in the pool OK and everything and even did my warm up lengths with me too.
Summary: Swimming 1,000 was never a personal achievement. Don’t get me wrong it would have been amazing to have got there but I am proud of my 830 lengths with the thousands of lengths training I have done previously! HOWEVER, my personal achievement and main aim was to raise a ton of cash and awareness for the two charities which I DID FANTASTICALLY! We smashed the £1,000 mark last night so it was amazing knowing that this morning. So many beautiful caring people I’m so lucky and blessed to have them in my life!
I will move onto the Great North Swim event now still brimming with confidence and training starts next Monday!