The new year begun in good fashion, freezing cold swim. I learnt that any swim under 5 degrees was known as an ice swim – so pleased to find that this qualified. There was no-one else in the water when I got in, just me and the birds. 2 1/2 minutes of swimming from in to out, hands where utterly freezing within 45 seconds, unlike on previous weeks when the temperature was nearer 7 degrees.
There is something incredibly peaceful and life affirming about the cold water, you can’t ignore the fact that you’re in it, this bringing you completely aware of your surroundings and nothing else. Clearing the mind, calming the breath and letting you slowly swim, at peace from one end to the other.
Aside from this I had another brush with hospital. From Friday I developed serious stomach pain / aches and begun to worry that it was appendicitis returning. Having just read Victor Frankl’s book on Man’s Search for meaning I found it fairly easy to find peace with the idea of a stay in hospital during COVID, any man who can survive concentration camps with dignity teaches us how easy most of life really is by comparison. THis definitely helped me, as I prepared myself to consider this a min holiday.
This paid off as the best news I could receive was that there was nothing wrong (at least in terms of appendicitis). As the pain didn’t really subside that much over Saturday and today, I decided to try to run off then use 4 rounds of Wim Hof breathing to loosen up the abdomen, flood the muscles with oxygen, carbon dioxide and nitric oxide. This seems to have worked – supporting me to think this was all digestive and overeating too much I usually wouldn’t over Christmas. Hopefully this will remain fixed.
Book wise I’ve just begun to read Coherent Breathing by Wilfried Ehrmann. IT has started well, using the Polyvagel theory to support how we breathe. I particularly like the opening chapter on the responsibility we should be taking for our own health, which is then supported by experts in the health system when we have exhausted every possibility that we have open to us. This seems a far better method of managing your own health than the current broken system that lies around us.