news & notices
Neil takes the plunge
Mar 31, 2024
A testimonial from one of our most avid swimmers!

You asked me why I swim?

As a youngster I remember the 25 metre pool being built in my small town in Victoria and when it opened it was such a novelty that everyone I knew spent endless summers lolling on the lawns and splashing around and it became second nature to go to the pool most days – and I still do (sort of)!

It introduced me to competitive swimming and the discipline of regular training that still helps on those early starts. I loved to compete but most of all to compete against my own times – and I still work on distance target times (that are becoming increasingly harder to achieve, but I keep trying). I continued swimming right through university just for exercise but it became harder and harder to fit in with work and a young family and a couple of moves to places without a pool.

After a couple of tries to restart the discipline I really got the chance when I retired to Lakes Entrance 10 years ago. I couldn’t believe my luck – a warm all-weather pool, not at all crowded, with a great bunch of fellow swimmers of all ages. And nothing has changed, it is still the same great place to swim.

Although there is a downside – swimming in a warm pool makes swimming anywhere else impossible for me (except the ocean in Sri Lanka which is the same temperature).

Forget the beach. When my son-in-law in Byron Bay asked why I wasn’t going swimming at the beach up there, I didn't want to tell him it was too cold! So I said, “Na, not enough chlorine in it”!

On travels all around the world over the past few years I’ve had the chance to swim in almost every ocean and sea, including swimming in 2C waters at Svalbard (look that up!), to tick them all off the list – no thanks, always too cold. So nowadays, swimming is to flex my bad back and to oil my arthritic joints, to lift my heartrate as part of my internal fitness, and to strive for those lap times to convince myself I’m not done yet! But most of all, I love the solitude and silence of being underwater. It’s all I need to start the day.