Focus. Think about what you’re doing. Three deep breaths, push off from the side, extend an arm, breathe, turn, face the bottom, bring your arm forward and – what the..? Where did that old lady come from? Oh my word! There’s another one. They’re flocking this way.
Execute a salmon-like wiggle, carving through the slalom of septuagenarian swimmers. Grab a breath, find your balance again, kick, breathe and – argh, there’s another one. She’s right in front of me. Abort, abort. Take evasive action. Pull up, pull up!
The moral of today’s tale is that it really pays to get up early. That extra half hour (to, ahem, make sure the ice had all gone; nothing to do with having a nice warm duvet pulled up to my chin and a comfy bed) really makes a difference. We only have a small pool where I swim and it tends to get a little challenging when there are more than about five people in it. Whilst my normal pre-work slot doesn’t tend to get too busy, it seems that delaying by just a short while will dramatically increase the numbers in the pool.
And this is not a good thing when you’re trying to focus on practicing your drills. The part of my brain reserved for evasive maneuvering cannot cope with also having to concentrate on timing the exact moment to rotate in the water, finding a balanced swimming position, staying “long and slippery” (no, I’m not entirely sure either) and, not to forget, breathing occasionally.
So the alarm is set for the morning. The weather conditions don’t look too bad. If I make that effort then I can be in the pool and practicing to my hearts content, free to let the others have their turn as I finish.
It’s a good plan, but it is now quarter to eleven. Perhaps I ought to go to bed?