swim as a workout
Zero (if you have access to a community pool)
This self-care act is for you if:
- Your head is filled with more thoughts than you can handle
- You can’t prioritize
- You need to quiet your mind down
- This happens to you on a hot summer afternoon
The idea is simple: get in the water and swim until you can’t hear your thoughts anymore.
This technique works with almost any workout but it is particularly efficient with swimming and running.
I usually start the workout with dozens of ideas, one following the other.
In meditation practices, your guide usually tells you to observe your thoughts like clouds passing by, without sticking to any of them.
When I swim, I do the opposite: I don’t try to stop them. I stick to every idea and try to develop it.
Like: what kind of post can I write tomorrow? How can I promote the self-care journey? Where will I live next year? Do I need to email my new business partner? And what will I tell him?
As questions arise, I put all my energy in trying to answer them.
I follow their numerous junctions, I develop the thesis, hypothesis and antithesis.
I stick to the idea until I wear it out.
Then, another one comes.
Again, I try to analyze all its aspects.
I keep doing this, over and over, one idea after the other, one cloud after the other, until my mind doesn’t have enough energy to think because my body has used it all.
When this happens, my brain shows a flat encephalogram.
Instead of thoughts, I can hear the sound of water.
That of my breath.
Bubbles against my ears.
The wind in the trees.
And I know I can stop because my self-care mission is accomplished.
WHY IS IT SELF-CARE? Swimming is a full body workout. It’s particularly recommended if you have back pain, if you’re pregnant or need to improve your breath.
MORE ABOUT THIS
Swimming is less easy than it seems. I always forget that it’s a real workout until I get in the water and start swimming.
I used to think that swimming was boring and sometimes, I still think it is. What I do to entertain myself and keep the practice fun is alternate strokes: breast, crawl, using my legs only, my arms only, on my back, under the water, etc.
If you want to give it a try, like for running, don’t forget to stretch before and after swimming. Here is a 3-minute video to get you ready: stretching before and after swimming.