Temperature shock

Having started this months’ training quite well, I was feeling rather pleased with myself. A feeling that did not last, as progress ground to a halt in week three. In one of our sessions I created such a mess that evil coach switched on his bossy self and told me to go stand in the corner for an hour, facing the wall and contemplating my deeds. Not for the first time, I was considering alternative sports, the current favorite being ping pong.

The good thing about my coaches is, they sometimes know me better than I know myself, which is their job, I suppose. They took me off the variable sled and let me play with no limits, and – hurrah! – all was well in an instant, ending in a beautiful dive checking out the reef in 103m. Hope has returned!

Feeling motivated and on a roll, it was time to go home. I spent an entire night in my own bed, before packing my ski underwear, woolly hat, rain coat, down jacket, fur boots and various other items normally associated with snowboarding season and heading to the Apnoe Happening in Hemmoor, a beautiful lake in the north of Germany. This event is organized by Curt and Sharanne every two years, and it sold out in three hours! Crazy northern freedivers, all of you.

In a moment of outdoorsiness, I had decided to take my chances with the German summer and opted for camping. Considering I was in 42°C the day before, and I arrived to less than 10°C to sleep on the ground, in a TENT, I felt quite brave. Then I ripped my 5mm pants putting on my wetsuit in the morning and ended up diving to 32m – which is well below the thermocline, I might add – in my 3mm bottoms! After that, I went from feeling brave to feeling badass. Later I was on to give a talk about motivation and training surrounding a world record attempt, as well as what it means to fail. As always, I was surprised by the turn out, especially since there was yoga, meditation, breathing and deep diving as well as Stig Severinsen with Breatheology on offer. Fact is, a curiously interested audience had the presentation tent bursting at the seams – thanks everyone, it was fun to share my ideas with such an appreciative crowd – you’re all mad! Go do something important like Yoga next time!

Here is a weekend detail some of you athletes might appreciate: when I am in full on I-am-a-serious-freediver-training-properly- mode, I have a diet that looks like this:

After diving in a pair of 3mm pants (which are leaking from an unfixable hole left from the dolphin-pedalo-attack at the worlds in Kalamata) in 6°C, I swiftly switched to an entirely different kind of food group:

I wonder what bossy coach will say…

I’ll be good from now on, I will, I will! Promise!


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