Cold water reset

I’ve been feeling a bit “meh” this week. Lots of things have been stewing through my head, the weather’s been grim (for seemingly weeks) and Paul’s away in Thailand. Whilst I know he’s working incredibly hard and certainly won’t be sunning himself he has had the luxury of long haul flights in business class and temperatures around 35C all week. What I wouldn’t give for a bit of sunshine, warmth, on demand films and food and drink brought to me at the push of a button!

Because the weather’s been so cold we’ve not managed a dip outside for almost two weeks. I know swimming outdoors does my mental state a whole world of good but I often forget and find easy excuses when the weather’s a bit off putting. Today drove home just how much it benefits me though.

After a morning of continued “meh” the bestest swimming buddy and I went for a dip. The water was 5C, air temperature around 7C with a brisk cold wind blowing. After two weeks off it seemed harder than normal to get in. It was painful, bits genuinely hurt before they went numb. But once in we didn’t want to get out, a full 200m done in the wind with waves splashing our faces. Reluctantly, out we came, bright red, grins all round. It took a fair while to warm up this time. I was properly, almost uncontrollably, shivering by the time I got home. That doesn’t normally happen so badly but I put it down to having forgotten my hot water bottle for the drive home. Once slightly thawed I headed for the shower and discovered that it is absolutely possible to eat soup whilst standing under the shower. I reckon I was fully thawed by the time I picked the kids up from school.

I know all that sounds utterly stupid to most people. Why put myself through that level of pain and discomfort? Why do I do it? Because this afternoon I genuinely felt like a different person. I felt alive, awake, positive. The kids didn’t get shouted at once between pick up and bedtime – a feat that hasn’t happened all week. I think the pressure the cold water puts on all of my senses is so intense that the little boring things of everyday life that have been getting me down are forced to take a backseat. A kind of reset to my system. Fingers crossed the feeling continues for a few more days until I get chance to brave it again.

Soup in the shower

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