Above: Swimming in and getting out of the water, hopefully weather permitting, for the last time before my two-way channel swim attempt.
After completing just under 343,000 Metres in the harbour since May 3rd, I am now waiting for my swim.
Above: A welcome Lucozade Sport after swimming for 3 hours in the harbour with no food or drink.
On Sunday we went to see my pilot, Neil Streeter, on board the support boat SUVA. We discussed various things about the swim and weather permitting, we will be setting off on a spring tide this coming Thursday, September 04, 2008. I say weather permitting because at present it is not looking too good, but all being well, Thursday is the day.
I heard a good saying recently which was "Swimming accumulates" [in the body] and I know exactly what was meant by this saying. If we go on Thursday, it will be the culmination of 41 years worth of swim training, which will have accumulated in my body and mind. I am physically prepared from all the years of training, but more importantly, I am mentally prepared for it. I have pictured myself doing the swim over, and over again in my mind. I have pictured myself walking out in France, turning round and 'starting' my channel swim. But more importantly, I have pictured myself walking out on the beach in St. Margaret's bay, England having swum to France and back. This, in my opinion is equally, if not more important than just the training.
I read a formula recently, which went as follows:-
(Knowledge+Skill+Process) x Mindset = Exceptional Performance
Wow, how right this is. The Dover crew have given me the knowledge. The skills I have learned over the past 41 years of swimming. I have been through the process (training) to get to where I am today physically. If I multiply all of that together with my mindset, it will give me the Exceptional Performance required to achieve the task of being the oldest man in history to swim from England to France and back again.
I will update the blog the day before I know I am going. Thanks to Freda, Barrie, Irene and all the beach crew to have helped me get to where I am today. But most of all thanks to Beccy for being there day in day out, week in week out, month in month out. Without her total support, this simply would not have been possible.
UPDATE - September 03, 2008 - 10:00 Hrs.
"Put your feet up for the next few days" were the words from my pilot Neil Streeter this morning. The weather forecast for the next few days shows strong winds, so at present, it will be early next week before we will know when I can swim. The joys of Channel Swimming!
UPDATE - September 05, 2008 - 15:00 Hrs.
Well it goes from bad to worse. The forecast for the next 10 days is wind, wind and more wind! It really has been a miserable summer, not just for swimming, but for everyone. I can't ever remember one quite this bad. I spoke to my pilot 1/2 hour ago about any realistic chances of a swim, and even discussed swimming on the next spring tide. i.e. After September 13th when the neap ends. All I can do is wait, and if things change over the next few days, which they could well do, then I will update the blog. Meanwhile, it's back in the pool tonight, and probably a swim in the sea at Felixstowe on Sunday. And I thought the training was over!