Its no secret that I am on a mission to ‘Beat the Belly’. I’m not a FATTY… but I do have a sizeable belly.
For over a year I’ve been half heartedly going to the gym, with no real motivation, and no real consistency. For the past 3 week I have managed to stick to my routine. Whats more, for over two months now I’ve went swimming once a week. Therein lies the problem: I’m not a strong swimmer. A couple of weeks ago I managed to swim 10 lengths in a row (breast stroke) and after a sauna/rest break I completed another 7.
I registered my interest for Adult Swim Lessons at my local pool and I was contacted to start this week. Last night. During the day I ended up winding myself up and was very nervous, however the lesson was AWESOME! I was seriously buzzing at the end of it. It was a group lesson, me with two others, and the instructor was a lovely patient guy called Paul.
First point on breast stroke: Keep your feet flexed… like in a walking position.
Sounds easy to fix?
I guess practice will make perfect on this one. My first length like this resulted in a wee bit of cramp in my calves, not a full-on spasm, but there was definitely a twinge. There still is, so I have been stretching all morning and will continue to do so and hope thats its better for my second run tonight. If not I may have to cancel as injuries are NOT GOOD!
I massaged my leg this morning and found the precise source of the niggle – its actually the soleus muscle thats situated to the side and under the calf. A – ha! I didnt even know that there was another muscle tucked in there; the joys of living with a Remedial Sports Massage Therapist. I will endevour to learn as I go.
Second Point on Breast Stroke: Stretch and Glide.
When you stretch out, glide for a moment in the water before moving straight onto the stroke. As of yet I have been unable to accomplish this; because I dont have the power in my frog kick. Because I don’t flex my feet and push the water away. I am working on it.
Third point on breast stroke: Relax!
During my lesson I was taught how to swim with my head under water, breathing while coming up and stretching forward. EVERY time my head came up I could hear the instructor say, ‘Relax!’ He asked if I was scared of water. I don’t think I am. Am I comptetive? Definitely not. Then why am I so rigid, and so tense when swimming? Almost like I’m rushing the moves. I have no idea. I need to work on this. Especially as I know that every time my head comes up I have an opportunity to breath… so I’m not going to die.
Quite a lot to think about. I haven’t included other top tips from Paul, as I’m no expert and dont want to give bad advice. By writing a couple down I am reinforcing them in my mind, and *hopefully* I will put them into practice while practising.
Stretch. Pull. Breath. Kick. Glide.
Image Credits: The image of the swimmer was taken from the BBC website, and the others I found on Google Images. If anyone requires credit let me know.