Victoria Park not a recent picture and I did not even use this path

Decided to go jogging on days that I do not swim, which is most weekends. I managed to get around the bigger part of Victoria Park Probably around 3km. Quite amazing that I did not feel a desire to stop apart from at water fountains as I started getting really hot. The outside temperature reached 30 degress celsius.

Whilst I also increased my swimming bouts by 50% I feel some fitness coming on.

The swimming makes me much fitter than I used to be. Years ago when I started training for a half-marathon, I couldn’t even run more than 50 steps without stopping but now it doesn’t affect me at all. The combination of swimming and running is a good one.


The fourth dimension

After my morning swim at the event entrance

Whilst I have now three experienes with swimming

  1. I love swimming myself
  2. parent of a performance swimmer
  3. technical official

4. I will now be able to experience the other side of the competition pool and act as Athlete Service person during the #London2019#ParaSwimming#ExperienceExtraordinary event in the first week of September. British Swimming as always put together a great organisation to make to work for all of us helpers, swimmers, spectators, not to forget the excellent London Aquatics Centre where it will all be happening from 9. – 15. September 2019.

I am keeping up to the fitness level required to even help out at this Para event and have increased my usual swimming routine by 50%.

I just wish they would open a pool for helpers to use before or after their shift.

Towards the new season

Whilst we get ready for the GCSE year, the new swimming season also coincides starting in September.

Madison is awaiting a Physio appointment just prior to going back to school and then later in September with the consultant.

I am now inclined to ask to have the screws removed from her shoulder because it is very debilitating. We can’t plan anything, we can’t plan a holiday for next year or feel comfortable to do outings because of the unpredicable reaction to the treatment.

Normal activities are fine but anything special may lead to cramps around the body.

Obviously if all the muscles in the body are capable of working normally and were training at full potential very intensely for a long time and then suddenly lay dormant then the body reacts to this.

Just exercising part of the body will also affect the shoulder. I will express myself totally in lay-person’s terms and it seems that if a joint in the body is unable to be used due to the bones in that area not working normally then that can cause a real problem. Especially if the muscles are capable of working fully.

Whilst with a broken leg for example it is feasable to train just using arms for about 3 months at a time but Madison’s condition has been going on like this now since over a year. Those screws in the shoulder do not have any good effect and it is time to re-consider. Madison cannot compete as healthy and cannot be considered as Para because nothing is certain at the moment.

I am going to be helping with the World Para Swimming Championships at the London Aquatics Centre in September, which has competitiors who are fully assessed as Para swimmers. I do have a lot of admiration for any athlete who competes to their best ability.

I hope to see you there.

Dashed hopes

It appears that this shoulder operation didn’t work. In fact we are glad we didn’t book a holiday this year because at the moment, Madison can’t even stand up without being in pain.

Lee Valley Wildlife Centre

Yesterday we only went for a relaxing walk, so I thought, but then in the evening just standing up was extremely painful for Madison. It is of course the screws in her shoulder are causing pain.

A lake in Walthamstow Wetlands

Of course whilst Madison can’t do the swimming training because she still can’t rotate her arm around we – at least – want to keep the legs moving and doing 10.000 steps per day is a minimum requirement for fitness.

We went to the Lee Valley Wildlife centre and then onto Walthamstow Wetlands. A mere walk, which didn’t involve any strain onto the shoulders but in the evening and still today the shoulder hurts when just standing up.

Screws were inserted into the shoulder to fuse the joint together

Those screws in the shoulder are causing a lot of debilitating pain and we are going to ask the doctors to take those screws out.

ISL roars in London

I am quite amazed that the ISL competition was advertised on British Swimming on Facebook and is under the wings of British Swimming. Some big relief went around my body as at the beginning I felt stressed what format the competition would take.

Even better is that I probably can officiate as I just love officiating for competitions at the London Aquatics Centre, which has become my second home.

Calling it the London roar is very appropriate as Adam Peaty swims there and he is a big lion fan. It wouldn’t surprise me if Adam asked the organisers to name the competition London Roar.

As I’ve learned British Swimming will also recruit the officials for this, something I didn’t think would be possible. Announcements will be short notice but people are alerted to stand by.¬† The big event will be 23. and 24. November 2019.

It’s just great that Melanie Marshall, Adam Peaty’s coach is head coach, so everything is just like normal.

The non holiday

Living in an iconic holiday location, namely London, and near the London Aquatics Centre, we do not see much need to go away on holiday this year.

revision-booksMadison’s received a pile of revision books and spends at least 3 hours per day revising for the forthcoming GCSE results.

This year a student needed only to get just 14% of the exam questions right to pass the Maths A-level. But that is something Madison wants to achieve at a better grade. No better place to start than getting a better than good GCSE in Maths.

Today, when our local Raine’s Foundation pupils will be able to collect their A-level results from school, we’ll be there to hand out leaflets and memorabilia. #300moreyears.

Just as we’ve received an invite to join Melanie Marshall for her exclusive Swim Clinic on 29. December 2019 at Repton Pool, we find that due to the screws in Madison’s shoulder, she cannot even rotate her left arm around for training. It is the best Swim Clinic of the season, held by an actual Olympic swimming coach. Melanie is in the process of preparing Adam Peaty for next year’s Olympic games.

IMG-20170415-WA0003The swimming for Madison is in the dog house right now. Because it is not a permanent disability, Madison cannot train as para swimmer but we do not know what will happen next. Our next appointment to see the doctors is in September and the last time Madison went they told her that nothing has healed yet since the operation this spring.

Yet Madison is cheering herself up by wearing the Melanie Marshall hoodie around the house whilst she is revising for ther GCSE exams next year.

It is an exciting time to think that Madison can at least continue her performance based swimming career by helping to coach younger club members as she already teaches her younger cousing to get ready for racing.



Tricks of the mind

Whilst Madison is still not able to swim with both arms, her training has collapsed but Madison feels she can get back into performance swimming pretty quickly, once the shoulder is fixed. Madison thinks that her youth will help her to get back to top performance quickly.

I wait for it and see what happens. As we’ll have to wait till September now because the shoulder has still not healed and doctors may need to try something else.

In the meantime, I get up extra early in the morning to improve my own fitness and swimming. Since the Aquatics Centre hosts Ultra Aquasplash daily, the competition pool closes at 9am. Because I prefer the 50m pool, I make sure I get there in time to do my daily 1000m.

And hurray, today I managed to improve my best time by 5 minutes. Yet I felt like a rock in the water but the clock never lies.

Swim England National Summer Meet 2019I think those 2 weeks officiating at nationals have magically improved my fitness. Lets continue that and I will be helping at the World Para Swimming Allianz Championships 2019 at the Aquatics Centre.

The Aquatics Centre has become my favourite place for swimming and officiating. But the team work and discipline at the nationals is so far the best experience ever.