It's finally here! It's finally here! My year to swim the English Channel! Some of you dear readers may be running across this soggy little blog for the first time, having noticed my recent declaration on Facebook, showing my CSA registration info and swim cap.
Well, I'll let you in on a secret. I've been plotting this since January 2013. Last February, I wired the booking fee to my boat pilot, Stuart Gleeson, owner of an impressive 32' fishing vessel, the Sea Leopard, and one of the best pilots for the CSA. I snagged the first slot on the last neap tide in July 2014, the 19-27th. I made accommodation reservations in Dover for the entire month of July. I've connected with other marathon swimmers and English Channel aspirants from around the world on various swimming forums and groups. I've rolled out of bed and into a cold pool more mornings than not, knowing that every single swim helps me prepare for this incredible challenge.
And now finally, after a year of training (1,180,000 yards or 670.2 miles), thinking (OK, obsessing) and planning for it, I'm closing in. It's like being in the middle of the French shipping lane on my way to Cap Gris Nez. There is still a lot of prep to do. I need to ramp up my volume (an 8 hour pool swim last Sunday was involved), take care of my shoulders and eat real food. And no fun beverages until I've crossed the Channel. Are these sacrifices? Not so much. I'm am SO FREAKING STOKED to do this, I am thrilled with every opportunity to work toward my goal. Remind me of that when I'm blue and shivering and cussing up a thunderstorm after swimming in cold water or taking an ice bath.
Thanks for sharing this adventure with me. Journeys are a lot more fun with friends.