1. How are you feeling?
"Anxious, excited, busy......Can't wait for the time between now and getting in the water to be over, but at the same time so much to do before I get there!"
2. Does it bother you that your training’s been patchy?
“Yes, but I have done what I can. I have balanced work, family, injury and illness, and trained hard when I can and I feel fit. When I don’t I rest. I have learned that I take longer to recover after long swims than others, and I get sick easily (maybe that’s my three kids - who knows). Now is a good example of how I have to manage this. I woke on Thursday with what little neck I have completely seized and agony. Not the first time, and I know I caused it by only breathing to one side on Wednesday in the killer aerobic threshold set. I also know that whilst I could continue swimming, if not fixed it leads to nerve pain in my hands and ultimately leads to slow swimming and uncertain endurance. Solution - take a week off, have three massages, see the chiro for “shockwave” and adjustment. I’ll be back in the water at 100% fitness on Tuesday, giving me a week to find my flow and prepare for the channel. This works for me, and means mentally I can enter the channel knowing that I can swim, and swim, and swim, and swim………………"
Every time in the last two years there has been a big challenge - whether an 8 hour cold swim, or a long test (e.g. Palmie to Manly) I have manned up on the day and come through successful. Often where others have not. I feel that mentally I am tough enough to survive pretty much anything.
Hopefully this will prove to be the case this time too...............
3. Why swim the English Channel at all?
"As most of you will know, I was due to swim two years ago but was thwarted by poor weather. My whole reason for ever deciding to swim the channel was to prove a point. Sounds silly, but my point has parallels in every aspect of life, for everyone. It’s simple - if you really put your mind to something and you have help and support, anything is possible. The people who my charity of choice (Opportunity International Australia) are the poorest on the face of the planet. They live on less than $2 per day. It’s women that we lend money to, we train them and help them start businesses. It’s a struggle, but they get support. 97% of these women succeed. They repay the loans, and create a sustainable future for their family. For them, as for me, it may not seem like it is possible whilst on the journey, and we may all fail, but the journey itself is invaluable and we will arrive somewhere different to where we started. My swims have always been a struggle, and in this sense a parable for the struggles we all face in different aspects of our lives.
ach of my swimming struggles has done good for others, and it’s at this stage that I need your help. Let’s put the impact we have had in perspective:
- In 2010 I swam bondi-watsons bay. I made it, just, and raised ~$10k for OIA. This money helped 900 families get out of poverty and build a better life.
- In 2012, the channel was due. I didn’t get to swim, but in the process we raised $35k which helped 3,195 families.
- This year, the goal is to raise $100k. If we make it, this will help 12,000 more families over the next few years.