I thought I would put together this blog to give anyone interested an update on my swim. I have been amazed with how many people know that I doing this. Sure puts the pressure on to get across the thing!
With just a week to go, all the hard training is behind me. The twice a day swims (including those early mornings with Tiffany, Bonnie, Michelle, Frankie, Ted and Priscilla), the long weekend swims (5-6 hours in a pool, lake or the ocean), and the weight training for almost 2 years is now over. I participated in several open water swims to prepare including the Potomac River Swim in 2007 and 2008, the 2008 US Master's Swimming National Championships in Clemson, SC, a 6 hour swim in the Dover Harbor a couple weeks ago, and the Swim Across the Sound in NY's Long Island Sound. While the Sound swim was called short due to thunderstorms, I still gained confidence in my ability to endure as I was stung by jellyfish over 100 times. I have decided I am anti-jellyfish.
So now my focus is on resting my body, not getting injured, and gaining weight. When I went to Dover, I quickly realized how incredibly hard this swim will be due to the cold alone. A water temp of 60 deg doesn't sound that bad but it's absolutely frigid. Turn your lips blue, hypothermia, can't stop shaking, frigid. In fact the cold, rather than the rough water or distance, is what causes many people to not make it across. So I am gaining as much weight as I can. I have added about 20 pounds to my triathlon weight and hope to add 5-10 more before I swim. Sounds fun but its really not.
I will try to keep this blog up to date with anything noteworthy. I really appreciate all the support I have received from everyone - especially my family, my work friends and colleagues, the swim crowd at the Hartsville, Darlington, and Florence YMCA's, my triathlon and biking buds (it was great to see so many of you at this weekend's triathlon!). I have no idea how this will go but I am excited to give it my best shot and see what happens. Thanks for sharing in the fun with me!
After competing in triathlons for 9 years, I decided it was time to try something different. In the back of my mind I had always had this idea that I would try to swim the English Channel some day. Now, after almost 2 years of distance swimming training, that day is almost here!