Apart from the ‘where do I donate’ question, people are also asking lots of others. So I thought I would sit down, and try to answer some of the most common ones here.
Q: Have you got a date yet?
A: I am aiming for the 30th August so this is the date we have sent to QHM (Queens Harbour Master), who, in conjunction with Cowes Harbour Commission, are responsible for most of the ports along the Island coast, with the 31st Aug as a back up. The wind plays a significant part in this challenge. Too much and we cannot go, so we will be keeping a close eye on the forecast over the next week.
Q: Where are you starting from?
A: I am aiming to start at Ryde and head towards The Needles, going round anti-clockwise.
Q: Will you have the tide with you?
A: I will start with the tide from Ryde to The Needles, and hopefully we will time it so that I get the tide from The Needles to St Cats. From this point the tide will turn and will be against me. I have accepted that I may not go anywhere for anything up to 5 hours, but that is the nature of the beast. As soon as the tide turns again I should be able to go with it all the way back to Ryde.
Q: What do you do about eating?
A: I will eat every 30 mins, but will never be able to take on enough! (It is estimated I will burn about 40,000 calories). Boiled eggs, chocolate and beetroot brownies, HIGH5 Sports Nutrition gels and energy bars, are some of the treats I am looking forward too!! Apparently I eat a bit like an Otter when I am in the water!
Q: How much training do you do?
A: Some say not enough, some say too much! I swim at HOWL Multisports,Bitterne Leisure Centre and the sea for about 15-18 hours a week, I run about 8-10 hours a week including running with the Itchen Spitfires Running Club, Last week I ran 70K! I also go to Pinnacle Performance & Training 2-3 times a week as the training schedule set by Andrew McGhee has been designed to improve my core strength. Combine this with a full time job, and a full family life, the last few months have been very tough.
Q: What do you think about?
A: We have broken the swim down into manageable segments, Euan McGrath has helped me mentally and with his advice 15 mins is the longest time I go without either a change in tempo, or eating. I get into a trance like rhythm, and actually just do mental arithmetic. Numbers go round and round, and before I know it, someone like Steve Roberts is stopping me to eat and drink.
If you have any other questions, please feel free to comment below, and I will do my best to answer them.
As always, despite this being a solo swim, it is not a solo attempt, and it takes a huge amount of effort from lots of other people. Thank you to everyone who has said a kind word, or offered support in any way. It is greatly appreciated.