Getting Wet (again)

5 Apr

I went swimming this morning, I have to admit, its been a while. There are several reasons for this, they’ve been refurbishing the changing rooms which meant a hike around the building in your swimsuit and I have really been enjoying the walking. I have missed it though, it felt pretty darn good to put on my swimsuit again!

Everytime I return to the pool, I’m reminded of how far I’ve come from that first trip over 3 years ago, the smell of chlorine always motivates me too. Swimming pretty much made my life better and was the start of my love of exercise and fitness.

Swimming really is the ideal exercise to start with if you’re thinking about making your first venture into getting fit. It’s ideal if you’re conscious about your body, this may sound bonkers but once you’ve made your way from the changing room you’re in the water and no-one can see you?  And that walk, well I can guarantee everyone is concentrating on their swimming so they probably won’t even see you – take a big breath and go for it!

Couple of tips for feeling a bit more confident (for the girls) – buy a good supporting swimsuit, if yours is a bit old and baggy, you’ll drag in the water as you collect it between your skin and the suit and you will look bigger than you are. If like me you’re over 40 or you have a big bust, make sure you get one with support, it does make a difference. Swimsuits are great these days, you can buy them with support for just about everything, the right one will also pull your tummy in. I actually feel really good about my body in my swimsuit, or maybe I just have a thing about tight lycra!  It really is worth spending some money on them, look out for sales where you can pick up good suits much cheaper and if you find one you really like, buy 2, that way you never have the excuse that the suit is in the wash. 

When you go off to buy one, try lots on, they all have different shapes and you can look and feel totally different in two suits that may look almost identical. If you’re conscious about the tops of your legs, you can get some suits that have short type bottoms which are great for making you feel more confident.

Men – the advice for you is similar, buy new kit, make sure it fits, it doesn’t matter if its a pair of speedos or longer length trunks, just make sure it fits and you feel good. Again baggy shorts will drag in the water.

That is the important thing – if YOU feel good, then you’ll enjoy your swim more and keep going. Another tip is to take your towel with you, put it on the side so you can grab it as soon as you’re out of the water. Image

Get yourself some goggles, a nose clip if you need one and grab a bottle of water (you wouldn’t go to the gym without a drink, swimming might take place in water but you still need to stay hydrated, drinking the pool doesn’t count!) So you’ve got your swimsuit on, you’re in the pool, you look around you and there are people thundering up and down, doing crawl, how do you feel?

I remember thinking ‘oh god, is that what I need to do to make it count?’ – no is the simple answer, don’t worry about what stroke you use, how long it takes you the first few times or how many lengths you can do. You’re there, you’re doing it, you’re not on the sofa, you are doing SPORT, you are taking RESPONSIBILITY and getting FIT!

The first time I went (after not swimming for over 25 odd years) I managed 14 lengths, thought I was going to die, that everyone was watching me and thinking ‘what is that fat, old woman doing?’. Twelve weeks later I swam 180 lengths for charity, the swimsuit was 2 sizes smaller and I loved every minute!  The photo is me doing that big swim, since then I’ve lost a further 3 stones and swimming has always been a big part of that.

So I challenge YOU to give it a go, it really is a great form of exercise & a lot of fun.

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