pool deck the buoys

“You are only able to enter and exit the pool once during your challenge. One toilet break is allowed, but the stopwatch will not be paused if this happens.”

Now, does this mean the pool DECK area, rather than the actual pool itself I wonder? As leaving the pool deck is fine, but getting out of the pool to stretch out a cramp SHOULD be ok, if you don’t leave the pool area?

“Pool deck” is a term I have learnt from AMERICAN SWIM BLOGS, do we say that here?

pool deck the buoys

25 Feb -she’s got miraculous technique

DISTANCE: 1,200m

TIME: 40-ish mins

A relatively relaxed swim at the Olympic pool – a relief as I had been fretting a little over my ability to sustain myself over the longer length – but it was fine! Being behind a slow swimmer was not frustrating as it gave me an opportunity to practice sideways kicking.

I also worked on breathing with my head lower in the water. The youtube video of yesterday laid great weight on having one goggle in the water, and one goggle out of the water, so I tried to do that more often or not. I think I did feel the difference in my body position when doing so, so this is definitely something I’ll have to keep paying attention to. It’s strange, on reflex I want to shut the one eye that remains under the water…

The earlier part of my swim was less busy, so I did a few faster lengths, tiring myself out nicely by the end of the length and needing a rest, but the slower part was just Quite Nice to do. A novel feeling, to get to the end of the length and then just turn around.


  1. CRAMP, the little bugger, kicked in at 1,050m exactly. It was in the sole of my foot and it was agonising. I stopped about 10m down and it subsided a LITTLE after a minute or two, and a lifeguard suggesting I “stamp on it a bit” – I then set off again, DETERMINED to finish. A few strokes of BR later, I think – OK, d4mmit, just finish this as quickly as possible, and kick off into crawl – NO, BIG MISTAKE – the kick sets it off again, worse than before. I clutch the pool side in absolute agony for a while longer, then grit my teeth and BR towards the end. FINALLY I reach the end of the length and heave myself out of the pool swearing blue bl00dy murder – it reeeeeally hurts!!
  2. Beefy dudes who hang around in the shallow end for a chat. Later on we realise they were probably gym go-ers who hit the pool “for a cool down”. I diskard them utterly.

My next action has to be to email the swimathon dudes to ask about rules about getting out of the pool. If this cramp kicks in during swimathon, I will HAVE to get out of the pool to get rid of it, as I can’t swim it off. And if getting out is a rule-break, then that means I am quite likely to have to give up less than halfway through the swim, because I can’t stretch out the cramp in the water. Surely this can’t be what they want…

PS if anyone DOES have any techniques to get rid of cramp (sole of foot) whilst IN the water, please do let me know…

25 Feb -she’s got miraculous technique

good toes naughty toes

The only exercise I know for toes is “good toes naughty toes”, but now I have found some MORE:


Next challenge: where does one buy a golf ball? Actually, I know the answer is Decathlon, but I can’t be arsed going to Decathlon soo… maybe I’ll just go to an MBA school and mug passersby? Must be simpler (JK u gaiz).

good toes naughty toes

One freestyle drama after another

Watching this video has COMPLETELY traumatised me. I am sure I am guilty of all of these things! Certainly the head too high out of the water thing. Does my head REALLY weigh about 8 kilos? Wow! Mine is probably even heavier due to the weight of my massive brain stupid long thick hair. That makes sense.

Coach Chlorine has already told me about pressing the water too, I try not to do that any more but frankly who the heck KNOWS what is going on underneath there.

Why do all youtube swim coach dudes say SWIM TALL, anyway? Define your terms! I am 5″2 and unfit, saying “SWIM TALL” isn’t exactly relevant to my life experience d00ds.

One freestyle drama after another

22 Feb – shove it in sideways

DISTANCE: 990m (safe side), counting went awry
TIME: 45mins
CRAMP: none!

All in all this was a bit of a tough one! I felt sluggish for a while and each length seemed more tiring than usual. However, mere morning tiredness is the least of my problems.

After watching a few side kick drills on YouTube last night, I thought I’d give them a go whilst the pool was relatively quiet.

*FX: /needle abruptly screeching out of groove/*

Argh! Noooo! I can’t do them! I just sink! Omg I AM terrible after all and I will never feel slightly superior to head up front crawlers any more…

But noooo! I admit, they looked easy! I didn’t even think that I would struggle. But my arms sank each time I turned to breathe, followed by, well, the rest of me… argh! No wonder I struggle to breathe if I can’t even FLOAT.

It makes sense though, my left arm also tends to sink when doing catch ups.

Am actually a little indignant that my body even dares to sink. I have so much GUT i.e natures own flotation device that surely floating would be the ONE thing I could do.

Oh well. More practice called for…

SEE YOU NEXT WA-*glug glug*

22 Feb – shove it in sideways

19 Feb – gotta have my towel gotta have my chlorine

~Friday, Friday, swimmin’ down on Friday/SPLASH SPLASH SPLASH SPLASH!~

DISTANCE: 1,281m

TIME: around 45-50mins odd.

CRAMP: none! Praise be! (I had eaten banana/crisps, taken multivits, stretched AND remembered my bottle of water so all admire my shining halo).

This time round I managed quite a few more laps of bilateral breathing, and had a complete crisis of confidence that I had front crawl mechanics correct or not.

A while into it, I realised that if I made sure my right arm was moving down and backwards when I was breathing on my left hand side, it made getting to the left hand side easier? But I am sure this goes against what I thought ‘was right’. But I also had a bit of crisis of confidence following my spying on zipper drill lady from last time at Marshall St, and thought I might as well try it for a while. It helped me breathe, but am I completely wrong? I don’t know!

In desperation I turn to youtube. This vid from SwimLabs is nice and clear, and suggests something called a TUMMY DRILL, which is such a nice name I think I will try it… but it does appear to indicate that when you are breathing, each arm should basically be as stretched out behind you as much as it is in front of you, i.e. you have completed all your stroke by that point. This is also backed by Speedo about 2 mins in (once you get past the obligatory HEY, FINS! HEY SNORKELS! bit).

So, I found something that seemed to help with one thing i.e getting me out of the water enough to breathe, but all guidance appears to say this is rubbish, don’t do it. So, what to do!

Another thing – I think I noted this before but forgot – side kicking drill. However, I am ashamed to say that this looks difficult and I am NERVOUS to try it in the pool with other people around as I get in the way as I mess it up! Wah!

Anyway I gotta go, gotta get on the bus, decide what seat to take; I have more than just swimming to think about so…




19 Feb – gotta have my towel gotta have my chlorine

quick cramp research

How to Get Rid of Leg Cramps During Freestyle Swimming Kick Sets




I am definitely guilty of not drinking water throughout as I keep forgetting to bring a water bottle. I could be more consistent on eating narners/taking supplements. I could be more consistent on stretching exercises every day too…

But what about stretching immediately before you get into the pool? I admit that I don’t do anything, I just get in (but everyone else seems just to ‘get in’ as well). (Should I admit here that I also forgot to shower first before my last swim! Sorry guys mea culpa).

I am DELIGHTED to note that usaswimming recommends drinking PICKLE JUICE

quick cramp research