Aquatic revelations

I’ve just realised why I can’t increase my swimming speed.

It’s because of my habit of ‘making the numbers’ – assigning numerical targets and round figures to everything in life. (I know precisely how much wealth I want, how much I want to earn, how many children I want, etc etc.) And my swimming time over 1500m – 25 minutes dead – is exactly one metre per second. 25sec for my 25m gym pool; 60 lengths at 25mins. And whenever I’ve tried to get faster my subconscious has interpreted it as messiness, and forced me back to a metrically satisfying metre per second.

Now I know the enemy, I know a way to beat it! I’ll recontextualise my mind to think in terms of strokes not distance – because a stroke carries me about 1.5m; all I’ve got to do is think in terms of a stroke per second instead of a metre per second. Hey, that’d be 17mins, putting me on the tails of the Elites!!!

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