Health · Notes from West London

“Summer bodies are made in spring”

Here’s a phrase that I heard for the first time last month: “Summer bodies are made in spring”. I caught just a minute or two of Zoe Ball’s Breakfast Show on Radio 2 one morning and that seemed to be the lesson of the day. There might have been a more detailed chat with someone relevant, Joe “Lean in 15” Wicks perhaps, but all I heard was that summer bodies are made in spring.

Contemplating my current lack of fitness, it’s safe to say that my body in its present state was made at Christmas, with a few pounds added on New Year’s Day for good measure. Today, the first day of spring, I have taken my first steps to address this, or rather my first strokes. Yesterday I joined a gym again, mainly to use the swimming pool. Having paid up for the next three months, I had my first swim of 2019 earlier today: 20 lengths in a 25-metre pool to get things moving.

As predicted in this piece in January 2016 I cancelled my membership to a nearby private gym, not as quickly as planned, but eventually. In the years since then I have reacquainted myself with the local public pools, “pay-as-you-go”, as it were. I am no longer one of those people paying £50 per swim in quiet months.

The three months membership that I signed up for yesterday is at one of the local public pools, with its fitness centre attached, and it costs less than a single month at the old private gym. Five swims per month will leave me “in profit”, saving money compared to “pay-as-you-go”. In addition, they gave me 5 family passes, free swimming for up to 5 people each time (2 adults, 3 children, and not restricted to family members). The value of these passes, if we use them, is equivalent to the first three months of membership.

Back in 2011, when I regularly swam at least 20 times per month, I kept a record of my progress, first in the password-protected Word documents in which I draft my thousand words or more per day, and then in a spreadsheet. This time round I aim to make the information more easily accessible, to me and to anyone with an Internet connection, beginning with a summary of today’s 20 lengths in the table below. My plan is to swim regularly and get fitter. If things work out, the table below will grow as spring progresses. And maybe, by June, I will have a summer body.

 

Date / No Lengths Breakdown [BrS = Breast Stroke, BaS = Back Stroke, FC = Front Crawl]
Fri 1-Mar-2019 / 1 20 4 BrS, 2 FC, 4 BaS / 1-minute break / 4 BrS, 2 FC, 4 BaS
Mon 4-Mar-2019 / 2 20 4 BrS, 2 FC, 4 BaS / 1-minute break / 4 BrS, 2 FC, 4 BaS
Wed 6-Mar-2019 / 3 24 4 BrS, 3 FC, 5 BaS / 1-minute break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS
Thu 7-Mar-2019 / 4 26 5 BrS, 3 FC, 6 BaS / 1-minute break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS
Sat 9-Mar-2019 / 5 24 4 BrS, 4 FC, 6 BaS / 3-minute break, looking in vain for a missing ear-plug / 4 FC, 4 BrS, 2 BaS
Mon 11-Mar-2019 / 6 26 6 BrS, 6 FC, 2 BaS / 1-minute break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS
Tue 12-Mar-2019 / 7 30 8 BrS, 4 FC, 8 BaS / 1-minute break / 6 BrS, 2 FC, 2 BaS
Thu 14-Mar-2019 / 8 24 4 BrS, 6BaS, 2 FC / 1-minute break / 4 BrS, 6BaS, 2 FC
Fri 15-Mar-2019 / 9 26 6 BrS, 6 FC, 6 BaS / 1-minute break / 4 BrS, 2 FC, 2 BaS
Sun 17-Mar-2019 0 Failed attempt to swim at 7pm. I now know that there’s a swimming club on Sunday evenings, last swim is 5.30pm
Mon 18-Mar-2019 / 10 24 6 BrS, 6 FC, 4 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 2 FC, 2 BaS
Tue 19-Mar-2019 / 11 26 6 BrS, 4 FC, 6 BaS, 2 FC / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 2 BaS
Thu 21-Mar-2019 / 12 26 6 BrS, 6 FC, 6 BaS / 30-second break / 6 BrS, 2 FC, 2 BaS
Fri 22-Mar-2019 / 13 26 6 BrS, 6 FC, 6 BaS / 30-second break / 6 BrS, 2 FC
Sun 24-Mar-2019 / 14 24 Mostly 2 or 4 lengths at a time swimming with my daughter
Mon 25-Mar-2019 / 15 26 6 BrS, 4 FC, 6 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 2 FC, 2 BaS
Wed 27-Mar-2019 / 16 24 8 BrS, 4 FC, 8 BaS / 30-second break / 2 BrS, 2 FC
Fri 29-Mar-2019 / 17 24 4 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS
Sun 31-Mar-2019 / 18 26 10 BrS, 8 FC, 8 BaS
Tue 2-Apr-2019 / 19 30 10 BrS, 4 FC, 6 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 2 BaS
Thu 4-Apr-2019 / 20 42 10 BrS, 10 FC, 10 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS
Sat 6-Apr-2019 / 21 33 10 BrS, 6 FC, 8 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 2 FC, 3 BaS
Sun 7-Apr-2019 / 22 32 10 BrS, 6 FC, 8 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 2 FC, 2 BaS
Mon 8-Apr-2019 / 23 32 12 BrS / 20-second break / 10 FC / 20-second break/ 4 BrS, 2 FC, 2 BaS
Wed 10-Apr-2019 / 24 42 12 BrS / 4 FC / 30-second break / 4 FC / 12 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 2 BaS
Thu 11-Apr-2019 / 25 48 12 BrS / 6 FC / 30-second break / 6 FC / 12 BaS / 30-second break / 4 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS
Fri 12-Apr-2019 / 26 48 12 BrS / 6 FC / 30-second break / 6 FC / 12 BaS / 30-second break / 6 BrS, 2 FC, 4 BaS
Mon 15-Apr-2019 / 27 34 14 BrS / 8 FC / 30-second break / 8 BaS / 4 BrS
Wed 17-Apr-2019 / 28 44 12 BrS / 8 FC / 30-second break, a change of lanes / 10 BaS / 30-second break / 6 BrS, 4 FC, 4 BaS
Date / No Lengths Breakdown [BrS = Breast Stroke, BaS = Back Stroke, FC = Front Crawl]

 

Summary

March 2019:
18 Swims, 446 lengths, Distance: 11.15km / Average swim: 24.8 lengths (619m)

 

 

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