See you, Lanzarote! As the saying goes, I had to leave in order to come back. And I will! I can’t wait to be in April, where Martin, Susanne and I will be back for yet another intensive training camp on my favourite volcanic island in the Atlantic Ocean. For me, Lanzarote was love at first sight. The harsh and barren landscape reminds me so much of East Africa. It melted the heart of the Samburu hiding inside of me from the very first moment I sat foot on this island.
Coming back to foggy Denmark this weekend was quite a choc, but the temperatures are quite mild for the season and daylight hours are already much longer. Winter is a bitch, so you have to look on the bright side of things… It’s a matter of survival! 😉 This time, on the brightest side for me was my running squad. I was delighted at seeing my runners again Saturday morning and welcoming the new members of our team. My swimming implies long hours of lonely training in the pool and the open water. So my coaching in Denmark is a precious social contribution to my training life. It’s like a daily fix. I need it in order to keep up the good work in the water.
Once again, my camp in Lanzarote was highly instructive. At this stage, the path to improvement lies in the small details of my technique. I’ve refined quite a lot those last three months and I’m very happy with the results. I’ve been swimming at the local fish bowl all week and I have now an even better hold of the water. My biceps injury seems to be history, my swimming mechanics have improved again and my flow is different. More than ever I feel I have a solid foundation upon which I can build my endurance and speed. This greater feeling of efficiency is empowering and uplifting as it brings me one step closer to my goal. With endless hours of practice ahead of me, I know I’ll be ready to face the rigors of my challenge when the time comes.
Now I’m back to the daily grind and – believe it or not – it feels good! I can put some variation into my training again. Besides the general physical benefits of any varied training programme, strength conditioning and running give me a break from the monotony of non-stop swimming. They help me renew my mental strength. I couldn’t live without them. Moreover, being back home also means I’ll get to swim with Thomas again. Yet another bright side of the daily grind!
So, what happens now? Susanne and I are working on my training programme for the next few months, seeking advice from knowledgeable experts in marathon swimming among Susanne’s network in order to set specific training goals for me. Obviously we want my programme to be as well prepared as possible so I know I’m on the right track. The programme must be at once challenging and realistic. It must be designed to force me safely out of my comfort zone and bring me up to the next level. And Susanne is the only one who can guide me 100% through this. I respect and trust her and I know I’m safe in her hands. And that’s all that matters to me when it comes to my newly found passion for marathon swimming.
It’s a long journey, but thanks to my team I know that every step I take is in the right direction.
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