|Or saying "Good Morning" whilst you swim the breast stroke? The classic 1970/80's swimming poster that anyone of a certain age will remember.|
In my glory days (well and truly behind me) I used to swim at least 80 lengths within an hour sometimes 6 x a week straight from work. I don't have the universally recognised and much easier swimming technique whereby your head goes under water - I have a turtle neck thang going on. I'd imagine its awful for your neck and posture but that's how I swim. It works for me - I was still able to swim at the same speed as my non-turtle neck competitors in the pool.
So on Friday I decided to mix up my cycling with a spot of swimming - just like old times. I had a choice of two swimming pools one in the rougher part of town or one in the well to do part. I chose the latter. I was feeling posh with my new 'magic' jeans (by the way another person said "oh my god you've lost so much weight") and my Lulu Guinness wedding anniversary bag.
The parking was £1.80 for 2 hours, in the rougher neck of the woods, I'm told its 30p. Mmmm. I checked out the bikes that had been parked up - I could have rode the 3 miles to get there which includes a very steep hill but I figured £1.80 or nicked bike? Even in a nice area I could see some discarded padlocks. I came to the conclusion that a discarded padlock means the rightful owner didn't take the bike home. The swimming cost me £5.10, again, more expensive but I figured it was Friday what the heck. I like my free exercise so I do. I can't be doing with paying for gym membership - I like the fact cycling is free and so are my Wii dance and other workouts. I've become a bit of an exercise miser.
I set myself a target of 70 lengths of a 25 metre pool in one hour. I could only do 10 x 3/4 of a length whilst the ladies were working out until the young life guards put down the swimming lanes. I reckon that has to be the highlight of their day. For the rest of the time they have to set in their tall chairs and watch, quite frankly, not a pretty sight with us lot. I mean hot babes there weren't.
Then it all came a flooding back to me (liking the sort of pun) all the swimming etiquette that goes on. Firstly you have to swim clockwise - there's a board that tells you so and even shows you what clockwise is in case you had forgotten. But then sometimes I think well you could take clockwise as from the top looking down and...I digress. Then by rights you should wait at the end of the lane if you think someone is faster than you. Let them go ahead of you. That's the done thing so as not to mess up their flow. There are lanes for slow, medium and fast swimmers. I don't actually mind someone in my lane as I use them as a pace maker, bit like the peloton. Pick your lane wisely as swimmers don't actually talk to each other - they will just think and splash past you angrily if they think you are in the wrong lane. They can push you out without having to say anything. I know this as I used to be the one doing that to you. And ladies don't get all huffy if someone is doing the crawl past you and you're doing the backstroke. You will get water in your face and your hair wet. Its called swimming. I hate people like that who turn their face in disgust as you power past because 1) they're in the wrong lane and 2) they haven't quite grasped the concept that when you are in a fucking swimming pool you are likely to get wet!
|Ralph Fiennes in The English Patient looking remarkably similar to the man in the swimming pool - pic from google free pics|
That's another thing - you can't be doing just the breast stroke - as whilst it is still good for you the crawl is going to make you puff. My arms are still aching and I reckon I only did 16 lengths of the crawl in total. My total lengths for Friday was 50 in one hour. I was fairly pleased with that and even if I wanted to I couldn't have carried on as I was dying for the loo. And like anyone of a certain age will tell you "oh the put dye in the water so if you piss it will show up" weeing in the pool is a no no. I'm sure the dye thing is untrue but its enough for me not to urinate in the public baths thank you very much.
Until me meet again, which will be tomorrow. Enjoy the rest of the weekend!
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