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Thursday 14th April. Super strong swimmer

Ahh wow what a swim today! I met with the lovely Traci at Bassenthwaite lake.

Stood in her campervan, Traci begins by asking how long to I want to swim for, to which I reply “As long as I can”…which at this time of year is usually 10 minutes. Knowing my swimming ability (or lack of!) it is then apparent by how Traci de-kits herself ready for a short breaststroke kinda swim 😆

So Traci used to do triathlons and then, following an injury, her training diminished and now she ‘just’ enjoys swimming 5k in open water for pleasure. No wetsuit, or neoprene socks or gloves. Just her and ‘Pamela’ as she calls it- following a mastectomy and naming her implant after the busty Baywatch character, Traci also got herself a matching red cossie with zip for the role. Very fetching.

I instantly warmed to Traci’s humour.

Traci asked if I’m a ‘screamer’ as we walked to the water’s edge. “No” I replied “but I do sing songs when I get to my o zone”. I told Traci how my musician said that when we feel in danger or feel fear, we revert to childhood songs…which is why I always sing Disney when getting in cold water! But it’s not fear, it’s a giddiness I suppose.

Traci, with her strong Black Country accent tells me how she only started swimming in these cold lakes after moving here just before the pandemic and how she’s found her gaggle of swimmers, named ‘Swim & natter’, although she tends to swim off in front crawl and leaves the others to natter. I urged Traci to swim on without me but she said she was enjoying taking her time and taking in the view.

I had to call it to swim back, I didn’t think my body could take it much longer! And when we reached the edge Traci told us we’d swam for 21 minutes and 564 metres! I was well pleased with myself. But just a mere dip for Traci! My teeth were chattering away as we dressed after and we had a natter about the various swim groups across Cumbria.

If you’re in one and you want to swim with me whilst I’m here until 22nd April – get in touch!

I drove away with a shake and a shiver and a big grin on my face having met the tall and bold Traci! Brilliant.


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