I’m trying to swim the English Channel. That sounds impressive but I’m not going to plunge into the icy cold sea, covered in a layer of grease and sporting a wetsuit. Instead I’m trying to swim the distance of 34km in my gym’s swimming pool. I calculated that comes to 1,360 lengths.
I got up this morning with the intention of going swimming, but it always seems such an effort, especially as I like to finish my swim before 9.00am when the little ones are allowed in the pool. So this morning I was wavering, yes I will, no I won’t, yes I will, no I won’t, no I won’t, no I won’t. I knew I’d feel good if I went and bad if I didn’t, and I’d still have the rest of the day ahead of me when I finished. So I pushed myself and went.
There were only a couple of other people in the pool. It had an air of tranquility. As I hadn’t been for a few weeks, I decided to do just two sets of ten lengths, with a sauna at the end of each set as a reward. After the first ten, I just kept going, and going, and going, until I’d completed thirty lengths (my maximum to date).
The jacuzzi was empty so I relaxed in there before having a sauna. I find the sauna a very restful experience, one which alleviates all the stresses and strains of everyday life. After the sauna, I had planned to get changed and head for home. But the pool was empty, its surface unmoving, and I could resist it. I felt completely relaxed as I swam a final ten lengths.
It would have been so easy to stay at home and put off the swim until another time. But putting off things doesn’t get you anywhere and means that not only do you miss out on the feel-good feeling that you get when you’ve done it, but you actually feel a kind of self-loathing at your lack of motivation – or I do anyway.
The next time I’m oscillating between doing something or being lazy, I must remember how good I felt today.
By the way, I’ve now only got another 1,180 lengths to go before I’m in France!
What aren’t you doing that would enhance your life?