A swimmer swimming (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Now that the boxes have been unpacked, the mail has been redirected and we’ve discovered our new favourite local eateries, I’m running out of excuses for not doing any exercise. January is traditionally the month where I make another feeble attempt to retrieve my wedding day body. New year, new body.
So what’s this year’s abortive plan for ‘the body’, I hear you ask?
Well, last year you may remember, I dipped my toe into the yoga arena (Can Yoga Help Me Find My Core?) in the hope of finally locating my ‘core’, because that is apparently the precursor to true fitness (eternal life, lifestyle and happiness) and prevents us falling prey to the dreaded ‘embarassing leakage’ problem which haunts every middle-aged woman. All my friends had been yabbering on about the benefits of yoga for absolute donkeys years, like it’s as important as Chardonnay or something, so I obviously HAD to give it a try. The high point was the confirmation that my body is physiologically completely ill-suited to extreme sports; the low point being when I fanny-farted in the middle of my Cowface pose.
So this year I decided to go back to the basics, to a sport I trained in for a long time (until I began to take sport really seriously with the Jane Fonda Workout), and even enjoyed on occasion. (Hmmm, ‘enjoyed’ is probably a slight over-exaggeration, but then exercise has never been something I’d really make a choice to do if, say, I wasn’t a) unfit and b) overweight). So the sport I’ve decided put my faith into this year, to truly give me the best chance of becoming Louisa ‘The Body’ Simmonds, is swimming.
As luck would have it, we find ourselves in the vicinity of an enticing 50m pool, a little too close for comfort, to the new abode and as I need to shed at least 5kg and at the same time expose the ADHDer to some direct sunlight, due to tangible concern over his vitamin D levels, (as rather like RPatz in Twilight, his skin appears to cristalize when exposed to UV rays), swimming seems like a good idea.
But there are obvious concerns. Although I have matured beyond the sharks- entering-the-pool-via-the-plug-phobia, (being a sucker for any ‘rogue shark movie’), exposure of the middle-aged spread is obviously my biggest fear.
Such personal exposure transcends all sorts of mental body image issues. Exfoliation is the first major problem and the need to constrain wobbly ‘bits’ (hairy or otherwise) is the second, because the underwater swimmer can see EVERYTHING.
I’m certainly not averse to borrowing the old man’s razor at Christmas or on his birthday but waxing is something I only do to avoid looking like Magnum or my son, who currently believes that cultivating the bum-fluff upper lip look is cool. Having said that, I did notice a particularly long, rogue hair sprouting halfway down my inner left thigh the other day, (which provoked a horrified ‘eeeeewwwww’ from Nerd Queen, who I always enjoy shocking), so some work may need to be done in that area; purely for the sake of aqua-dynamics.
A friend of mine swims free-style for an hour, four times a week; (yes, you heard right). Our lengthy swimming strategy talks have informed me that, apparently, ‘free-style’ doesn’t mean any style’; it is what we Brits term ‘front crawl’. Not that that is really going to be an issue for me as I have never progressed beyond a hybrid doggy/breast stroke style. But unfortunately, our local pool doesn’t cater for doggy paddlers so I may be forced to begin my training in the recreation lane.
To demonstrate my commitment, I thought I might invest in one of these colourful Speedo cozzies that Olympic ‘swimmers’ wear, although it has come to my attention that they offer very little by way of support to the breast area and I am concerned that having the teabags swing freely around my waistband may constrict my aqua-dynamics too.
The other issue with swimming in a serious pool that I have always struggled to come to terms with, is swimming in a straight line. The last time I tried I ended up lacerating my ankles quite seriously in several places on the lane ropes, leading to several head-on collisions whilst being overtaken as I fumbled around trying to un-mesh my tethered feet – anyone who has done this will understand immediately how much it hurts. So I’m wondering if the ADHDer could somehow tow me along, rather like a car, by letting me hold onto his feet.
After further consideration, I’m beginning to think that I may need January to make my preparations fully and will commit physically to the ‘new body’ in February. In the meantime, I may take a few really long showers to acclimatise.