I've had an enforced break from training lately as I've been under the weather with a cold. It's important not to train while you're ill but to concentrate on getting well. If you try and train before you're fully recovered you're likely to prolong recovery and ultimately lose even more training time. Another golden rule is not to try and catch up with what you've missed. My master plan would have included a 6 or 7-hour swim last weekend but that's gone and I can't get it back. So I'll just press on. The next planned swim should be no more than 4 or 5 hours.

My first swim after time out was in the pool yesterday. A relatively short 2500m mixed session. The purpose was really just to check how I felt afterwards and to make sure that I'd fully recovered. I felt fine so yesterday I headed down to Poole after work and swam from Shored Road to Boscombe Pier and back; 14km in around 4:45hrs. A lovely swim to do in the evening as you swim towards the setting sun.

This was my last long training swim before my Channel Swim. I'll probably fit in a 3-hour swim next weekend and maybe another 2-hour sea swim next week but I'm now well into my taper period and feeling good. The idea of the taper is that you maintain the frequency and intensity of training but gradually decrease the volume. The aim is that your body is totally recovered by the time you are due to swim and that you are so deprived of your "fix" of training that you are bouncing off the walls and can't wait to start!

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