By: Blonde Two

As I am coming to the end of my 50 sleeps for 50 years challenge, I have decided to accept another (even chillier) challenge for the winter of 2018/2019. The Polar Bear Challenge is the brainchild of Devon and Cornwall Wild Swimming and involves… you guessed it… swimming in increasingly cold water over the winter. With some of my fellow Torbay swimmers, I have chosen to take on the Gold Polar Bear Challenge this year, for no other reason than I really fancied a gold swimming hat. Here are 10 of my instructions:

  1. Make a commitment to swim in outdoor, unheated water between the months of November 2018 and March 2019
  2. Forego my wetsuit and my neoprene hat, gloves and shoes for a swimsuit, latex or silicone hat and goggles
  3. Swim 250 metres in those waters, wearing those clothes, twice a month during each of those months
  4. Swim a total of 5 kilometres in those waters, wearing those clothes over the 5 months of the challenge
  5. Do my sums and work out that 250 x 2 x 5 only equals half of the 5 kilometre required total
  6. Realise that I am going to have to swim an extra 2.5 kilometres on top of the 250 metres twice a month
  7. Remember that the sea is much warmer in November than it is in March
  8. Start to build up the additional 2.5 kilometres as soon as November starts
  9. Wonder if it possible to survive a 1 kilometre, no neoprene swim in February
  10. Ponder the wisdom of such crazy challenges… and their relationship to middle age…

Outdoor swimming – on the topic of water temperature

Upon Entry to Cold Water – The 5 Stages of Cold Water Swimming