Back in the 90’s Whigfield sang about “Saturday night” the song often blasted out, in my student halls, while it’s residents, often tipsy on Lambrini, acted out the moves, along the corridors. That was the 90’s, that was Saturday night…this was my Friday.
I made plans, early on, as to what to do that Friday night. I was pretty skint, given that my last pay day, was a distant memory and I’d had to pay for both Christmas and New Year. There were no wild parties, just lots of trips to visit my family, who reside in various parts of the country.
I already had a swim planned, at my hotel. I did think, that I would maybe meet up with a others involved with Swimathon, but as it transpired, they were staying in a different hotels.
My first consideration was food, but my budget was very limited! I decided to go for a walk, get my bearings, enjoy some time to myself, some fresh air and food for tea!
It was already growing dusk, but the weather was a considerable improvement, to home. For one, I could walk, without risking falling over and making an idiot of myself. Staying on your feet, is always good!
I really enjoyed my walk, taking in the sights and sounds of London. I sorted myself out with some food. I decided on a bit of picnic tea: salad, fruit, yogurt and other bits of nibbles. Having a fridge in my room, was certainly of an advantage!
Tea bought, i headed back to my hotel. After enjoying a bit of a picnic, in my room, was time to head to the pool.
The pool area was really lovely and relaxing. There was also a sauna, jacuzzi and steam room, which unfortunately out service. The pool, was at most, 15mtrs. More like a bath than a pool! This however, cost me the nominal fee of £3.50. Cheaper than what it costs, to swim at my local leisure centre, the day before.
The pool was, initially empty, I was joined, from time to time, by others. Once the were six of in the the pool, it was packed! I decided that as the pool was small, not to concentrate too much on distance, but rather use it as technique and tumble turn practice session.
I am aiming, to complete my 400m, as all freestyle and use tumble turns, in opposed to open turns. Tumble turns, are those used in competitive freetyle. They also help to improved your time. I am being realistic however, in recognising that with others in the lane, some of whom may be less experienced, than I, it may not always be safe.
Tumble turns, once learnt, are relatively easy to execute. They must, however be taught by an professional swimming teacher, because there is a risk of injury, if they are not carried, correctly. My swim coach, knows of a swimmer who burst both his Achilles tendons, while doing a tumble turn. Ouch!!!
Although I can now, complete a tumble turn, correctly, I still get water up my nose, which hurts! This leads to streaming eyes subequently, I can’t see where the hell I’m swimming.
The next hour, was spent practicing tumble turns, without getting water up my nose. It wasn’t always successful and i knew my sinus’s would play up, if I wasn’t careful, leading to me sounding like I had a heavy cold. This wouldn’t be a great outcome, come the following day, when I was being filmed
Overall though I was happy with my progress, I realised that if I consistently breathed out, through my nose, as I turned, it prevented water, from going where it shouldn’t!
I also decided, when the pool was empty, to practice butterfly. Butterfly, is an anti-social stroke! The pool, was empty of people, when I started. At the end, I think I had nearly emptied the pool of water and three people had joined me in the pool. Oops sorry!
Swim completed, it was time to head back upstairs to prepare for the following day….
View from my hotel, at night