Nordic trip 2019 – conclusion
I visited 5 cities in this trip, Stockholm on the west, then Porvoo on the east, then Tampere on the north, then Tallinn on the south, with Helsinki as the centre.
I did 5 orienteering competitions in total, with 4 of them having WRE status. However, I got the last place in both FootO competitions in Sweden, in both middle distance and sprint distance. My places in the 3 FinTrailO competitions weren’t good too, not reaching the median in all 3 races. As I didn’t get good result when doing FootO sprint WRE, I now think I should probably stay in Asia for FootO sprint WRE competitions in the future. The WRE scores of FinTrailO haven’t been released yet so I still don’t know if I will go to Europe to do TrailO WRE competitions afterwards since there are TrailO WRE competitions in Asia now.
I also tried cold water swimming literally the first time in my life. Initially I found myself doing well for 28 minutes in 7°C despite having no cold water experience at all, later when I was trying out various ways for the recovery I didn’t realise that what I was doing was actually dangerous, and that made the community very concerned. I swam 6 times in total in 5 – 7°C water, most of them were about 25 – 28 minutes in time and about 1 km in length, but these are all over now. I’ve returned to the heat hell Hong Kong where my permanent residence is and it is already so damn hot in May – the air is now near 30°C and the sea is already 25°C. I no longer enjoy swimming because it is so damn hot – I can become overheated within just a few hundred metres in such temperature, however as I have signed up for a marathon swimming competition in July in Switzerland (where it won’t be too hot) I still need to train for it despite extreme heat, and I’m finding a way to get over the heat.
I now think that I should visit my ice swimmer friend Chun Kong Mak coming winter for few weeks and get some proper ice swimming training where I can safely push my limit to see how far I can go in ice water. Also, he invited me to form a 4 x 250 m ice swimming Hong Kong team in 2021, which I initially told him not to count me in because it is not trainable in Hong Kong. However, I now believe that if I have a few weeks beforehand there I can do that, so I now tell him I am interested in that, but we are not sure if we can find the remaining two legs as well as there seems no one interested in cold water swimming in Hong Kong, as seen from the fact that nearly everyone wears a wetsuit in winter in Hong Kong.
Now I am back to a place where I’m not happy for at least half an year in a year. My next big goal will be a marathon swimming race, LGSA classic, in July. It is a 13 km race starting at Lausanne, across the width of Lake Geneva, and ending at Évian-les-Bains. The expected lake temperature is about 19°C – 20°C and I hope to complete it in 5.5 hours. This will be my first marathon swimming race (>= 10 km) and will be my stepping stone towards my ultimate target race, Cold Half, a 14 km marathon swimming race in Hong Kong with rough seas, which I hope that I can do it next year.