In this guest blog, open water swimmer and Swimrun athlete Fanny Kuhn shares how she is staying motivated while pools, oceans and lakes are closed due to COVID-19. Fanny is a Swimrun world champion, and swam at the elite level in Sweden and at the University of Louisville. She was born in Sweden and now lives in Barcelona, Spain, where she runs WILD Swimrun, a swimming community for women.

Fanny Kuhn Swimrun

The world has turned upside down, and the world’s swimmers find themselves in a dry situation. No pools are open and oceans and lakes are inaccessible – unless you have a private pool it’s likely you have to accept the fact that you won’t be returning to the water for a couple of weeks or months. 

I’m a swimmer and Swimrun athlete trapped in quarantine in Barcelona, Spain, and on the longest non-swimming streak in my life (at least since I can remember) – 43 days and counting. But I try to not be sad about that, and instead focus on the things I can control. To help you get over some frustration, I’m sharing my tips to keep sane in these difficult times. 

Find New Ways to Train

Find new ways to train at home to keep healthy! Now, it’s all about maintaining your strength as best you can. Take the opportunity to work on the things you normally don’t focus on – core and total body strength. The MySwimPro app is a great tool to use to keep motivated with a bunch of set and ready dryland training plans. I tried a workout the other day and had a good sweat on my carpet! 

Dryland workouts

Take Time to Slow Down

Take advantage of this break. You will have more time on your hands, so try and use it well. Take time to sit down and think philosophically about your life, your goals and plans for when this is over. Your body will most likely appreciate this forced life break, so take it to heart and don’t stress too much about losing shape or feel of the water. You’ll be back quickly again! 

Keep Your Brain Engaged

Try something new. I started to study a new language (Catalan), for example. The progress and accomplishment I feel from learning is similar to the feelings I used to get from training and working hard in the pool. To feel that you improve something is good for the brain and keeps you sane. If not a language, maybe take the time to learn about a new sport or activity you want to try once we get out of confinement. 

In case you’re curious about Swimrun, I invite you to check out WILD Swimrun – a swimrun community for women that I run with my friend Maria Rohman. We’d love to tell you everything about the Swimrun world!

Go Crazy 

Release some energy now and then! You can do this in a tough strength training session with your favorite music in your ears (P.S. you can listen to music while using the MySwimPro app for dryland – it keeps on playing in the background!). Or, just put on your favorite song and dance it off like crazy – it helps, trust me. 

Find Digital Connection 

Organize one-on-one or group calls on Zoom or Skype with your friends from near and far. Video calls are the next best alternative to seeing friends in real life, and it really gives a boost in this sometimes lonely confinement. Why not do a virtual workout together? We do a WILD Virtual Tuesday with the WILD Swimrun Club. I’m happy to invite you for a session if you want to try! You can also tune into MySwimPro’s live dryland workouts:

  • Tuesdays at 3pm EST on Instagram
  • Sundays at 10am EST on Instagram, Facebook and YouTube

Luckily, the world seems to be healing, and with that, our release into nature is sure to come soon. I will go for a swim in the sea here outside of Barcelona the first chance I get. Until then, I’ll keep working on what I can control and be ready to dive into the water whenever the coast is clear!

Follow Fanny’s dryland and swimrun journey on Instagram at @fannyfromswe!

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