This year I’ve got into open water (also called wild) swimming. A few years ago I would never have believed you if you had told me that I would voluntarily swim outside in water that wasn’t heated!
I’ve been swimming more this year (typically going four or five times a week to my local pool so I’ve been achieving my goal set at the beginning of the year) so I’ve been building my fitness and stamina up. I find the Speedo swimfit app really great to log my swims.
A couple of months ago, one of my colleagues at work (who also swims before work) asked if I had ever thought about dipping my toes in a loch. There’s lots of outdoorsy types up in the HIghlands to take advantage of the roads, rocks and deep water pursuits, and my colleague had recently joined a Facebook group called Wild Highlanders who go off and swim in many of the lochs around the Inverness area.
I was up for giving it a go, so we went out one warm summers evening back in July to Loch Achilty, Loch Achilty is a good loch for a first open water swim for a few reasons; because it’s not too big it’s not too cold (although of course it will still be cold when you get in!) and you can walk straight in without having to clamber in on slippery rocks or through weeds. Must have accessories are; googles, swim shoes, a poncho like towel to avoid any embarrassing reveals when you’re getting changed (this also prevents you from getting attacked by midgies!) and something sweet to eat after you get out of the water when the cold starts to set in!
This video below is of me a few weeks back
Unfortunately I have also struggled with a couple of back injuries this year. Even last week I was suffering with a trapped nerve/frozen shoulder – cause unknown. Thankfully I had a product at home to help which was sent to me earlier on the summer for an entirely different purpose!
Way back in June, Thermofreeze sent me some dry gel ice packs to use out and about on a picnic, but as the good weather hasn’t aligned on a day off for Mr B and I, we couldn’t find a use for them. However, they also double up as physio ice packs!
I was sent two large sheets of the ice packs, and here’s why I thought they were good:
You can cut them up into smaller sheets that suit you. I wouldn’t have fitted a whole sheet (24 pouch squares) into our freezer, but I could easily cut up one of the sheets in half to freeze.
They freeze ridiculously quickly, and can be manipulated to wrap around food (or in my case, my shoulder!). They are also lightweight and can be reused.
I wish that I had been able to use these ice packs on a nice hot summer day as I think they would be very effective in insulating some picnic goodies, but I was glad that I had these in my freezer to use on my poor shoulder instead of the usual bag of frozen peas!
Many thanks to Thermofreeze who sent me two sheets of their gel ice packs in return for a review.