One mile, 1.6km, 1600m, 64 lengths

So today I swam a mile for the first in years. A typical swim for me at the moment is bobbing about with the children, more bathtime than exercise. But today I pushed it and I did it.

And guess what instead of posting on Facebook and Instagram and high fiving everyone on my way out, my internal monologue was “well you did it but slowly” and “you only did breastroke”. Why did I do that? Why couldn’t I accept that actually swimming a mile is a pretty big achievement?

We all have automatic thought patterns that we default to. Whether it’s thinking we aren’t good enough, or believing we can’t, the first step to combating it is being aware of the thoughts.

Then we have to challenge them. That’s what I’m doing. Swimming slowly does not take away the achievement. Swimming breast stroke is no less valid than swimming front crawl or butterfly (although it’s unlikely I will ever do butterfly – realistic thinking rather than automatic thought pattern!).

Anyway, I’m going to need to find some belief. I’ve always wanted to take on a physical challenge and 2019 is the year. I’ve signed up to swim the dart 10k. I’m terrified. It’s an outdoor marathon swim and before today I really didn’t think I could do it. But I have 9 months to train and today I swam a mile. As a first step it’s not bad. In fact it’s pretty damn good. I can do it. And I will.

Anyone got any challenges lined up for next year? How do you stay motivated for training? How do you manage fundraising? How do you keep up the belief?

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