Ben Brophy

Less than a month to go!

That’s right my English Channel solo attempt is less than a month away! I am the 3rd swimmer to go between the 27th of August and 3rd of September.

I will be based in Dover for the week and won’t know which date I’m swimming until the night before due to weather conditions. The questions I keep being asked tend to be:

  • Am I nervous?
  • How long will it take?
  • How can I follow it on the day?
  • Do you feel ready?
  • Will you be disappointed if you don’t reach French shores?

And here are the answers to these questions!

Am I nervous?

Yes and no. I am more excited to finally be in touching distance of the swim, there is only so much I can do in the next two weeks  for the swim and the rest counts on my years of training, the weather and luck.

How long will it take?

There’s no fixed answer to this one I’m afraid, it depends on a number of things. The speed I am going, the tides, the weather, the traffic and what type of shape I swim in. By the type of shape I mean that the swim, I hope, will be in a large “S” shape between the two countries. This is dictated by speed of myself and the tides. If the tide changes to early into my journey I will end up having to swim the “S” shape plus and extra “C” on the end, which can add hours onto your swim.

How can I follow it on the day?

There are plans for a few member of Team Brophy and friends to be based on Dover beach in the afternoon following the attempt and hopefully celebrating on hearing the news with a few drinks and BBQ.

We will be posting on our Twitter and Facebook links to the live feed to follow the boat progress as I cross the Channel, as well as social media updates where possible!

Do you feel ready?

I don’t personally believe you can ever be ready for an attempt like this, however there are a number of areas you can focus on to greatly improve your chances. Fitness wise I am training hard and have two big weekend swims left before I start to lighten the training load in preparations. I have been stung by jelly fish twice in two weeks one with Vaseline and one without, so I know what that feels like!

I have trained in cold, wind and even had a sea session abandoned due to the weather. The sun has been an unexpected challenge but if it has warmed the sea up even a little bit the sun burns could be worth it!

I tend to see this challenge in three parts, fitness, mental and nature. Mental side it is hard to train for and plays such a big part of this challenge. There are a few things you can do to help prepare for this torture like the mindset I will be in for anything from 14-21 hours.

The last one is nature, no matter how much you have trained you need the sea, wind, sun and luck to be on your side to give you the chance at this challenge and this is what makes it one of the biggest challenges around.

Will you be disappointed if you don’t reach French shores?

Of course I will be disappointed, I am a very competitive person and I will not be giving up without a real fight. However, this challenge was done to raise money for charity as well as awareness. When I walk into the sea I will know that my mission three years ago has been completed and it is now down to a bit of luck from the nature and all of my training over the past three years to attempt to finish of this amazing experience with a bang.

This entry was posted in "Weekly" Blogs, Training and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *