I guess it is rather fitting that with 52 weeks to go (give or take a few) I have just spent the last 52 hours travelling. That is 1 hour of travelling per week of my countdown! Or one and a quarter times the swim distance I am planning to swim. Or 4 -5 x the time I hope to complete the swim in. None of that is really relevant though. It is an attempt to show perspective on how time is relative. I watched a movie on the plane about Captain Matthew Webb- the first guy ever to swim across the English Channel. He did it doing head up breastroke and drinking whisky the entire way to keep him warm! It took him 21 hours and 45 minutes, to swim 64 km (he swam in a zig zig due to the currents) and had only a rowing boat for support. How times have changed.
Perspective, it is all relative. If he could do that, then I can definitely swim 40km with a full support team and adequate nutrition despite the fact that the most swimming I have done in the last month has been a grand total of 4-6km!
Between travelling, being sick and trying to monitor and be wise with my CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome) I haven’t been able to spend much time in the water. I have had plenty of time to reflect on how best to use this time. It has not and is not easy. Every day is a mental and physical battle on how to most effectively tackle the day in the most effective, efficient and life giving way.
I am an incredibly positive person with a strong sense of tenacity, but the last 2 weeks have been super tough for me emotionally in dealing with the frustration of the season I am in. I feel like I am being held back, like a dog on a lead who just wants to run, my mind is willing, my body not so much.
I have to daily realign my thoughts and goals to what is important and try to live in the freedom of the gift that day has given me, try to enjoy the freedom of extra time while I am not training physically in the water and use the time to mentally prepare and visualise for the swim as well as to have fun and be free in this season.
I continue to try and take each day as it comes
I am currently in South Korea as team physiotherapist for the South African Rowing team. Being constantly surrounded by elite finely tuned athletes is both inspiring and a reminder of how weak my body really is. I am still figuring out if my heart rate is so high and I get breathless walking up 4 flights of steps due to jetlag or CFS, I hope it is the former though!
As always, only time will tell and so I continue to try and take each day as it comes, one step at a time, trusting in my God for this season