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winter swimming competition

The Day We Did Something Good?!

“Relax… we are all crazy… It is not a competition!”

Hohohoo, we are back and this week we showed ourselves how many different new activities and good things we can do in just one day. It was made happen due to our spontaneous decisions, we did not need to think about it twice. We decided right away and there was no possibility to withdraw from our decision. Our whole goal is to experience new things and activities, seek new places, and do memorable things, without planning for a year, because things tend to be more exciting when you decide spontaneously. One of these activities took place a week before Christmas, which included sport, charity, and maybe something from the crazy category (or stupid).

Just to feel good and keep fit before holiday eating…

Ready for Winter Swimming competition

At first, we saw an advertisement on social media, that there is going to be a winter swimming competition. Well, we were thinking that hmm we both like to swim, we like ice-cold water, we like competitions. So we did not need to think too much about it because we knew that we could make it and it is going to be fun. Fast thinking led to registering right away. After investing some money on that (registration fee), we had no chance to quit (because we are poor students)! 

winter swimming
Just a regular day at the office

About the competition

It is the official Estonian winter swimming competition. There are participants from different countries (mostly Estonian neighbors). 

It was a heated swimming pool?

Nonono, no heated pool, just casual seawater, which was the same “warm” as the temperature outside with 4 Celsius. That is a pretty warm condition for a winter swimming competition, but still, it needed some courage to jump in the water. The length of the “man-made” pool was 25 meters and we had to swim one pool length, turn around and swim back to the beginning, so in a total of 50 meters swim in cold water. 

how did we prepare for that

Well before the race, we had never swum that distance in the form of winter swimming and so it was pretty easy to break our records (because there were no records before). Because of the illness, before the competition, we had no opportunity to prepare for that. So overall we were confident, just go there to swim the distance, as usual, we do in a heated pool… easy right?!

On the race day

We arrived at the competition area and in front of us we saw a nice cool “man-made” swimming pool in the sea, just made for the competition. Then reality hit us and we thought we would be proud of ourselves when we just managed to swim the distance without being frozen. Well because we saw visually the actual length of the swimming area. But again we did the same thing as usual and we went to the starting line anyway. Overthinking destroys many great things and also new inexperienced activities like winter swimming competition. We jumped into the water, swam the distance, finished it, and survived! Boom… easy as that!

ice swimming
The feeling after you have done something new and also completed the first national competition

Comments after the race…

Well, it was not that bad, the water was enjoyable and it went fast. The fun fact about the race was that it was Erki’s first national competition (juhuuu), so he got two checks (not money) in one event. After that, we warmed ourselves up in the hot tub and exchanged impressions with other competitors and we heard that we were not the only ones, who are not doing it as a professional. They also just wanted to do something crazy, which brings them out of their comfort zone. To be fair we did not win any medals, but we are still happy that we decided to participate in that competition and for sure going to do it again in the future.

“In our hearts, we won!”

The day was not over

Our next new activity did not wait for us long, because in the same evening we thought, besides we already have done something new we can fit another cool activity into our schedule. Long story short… Usually the Christmas period unfortunately is the only time where society notices needy persons, who have due to different circumstances, found themselves in not so good positions. 

What did we decide to do? 

Everywhere are different charity organizations, where people can volunteer to help people through charity.  We managed to find a Foodbank and decided to take action over there!

food bank charity
Men in aprons

Food Bank, what is that?

The Food Bank’s mission is to help families turning hard times. They collect food and nice people have a chance to help them by donating some food or money. It is a really good thing and it was happy to see that so many people wanted to help. That way all the families can enjoy Christmas time and have a peaceful holiday. 

Our task was to hand over flyers, where was the information of what exact food organization needs most. So customers had a chance to be part of the charity and bought some extra goods for the Food Bank. We spent four hours there and to our surprise, we saw how much food different people donated and we got confirmation that Christmas time is giving time. Our mission was successful!

What did we learn?

We learned really good lessons that day. 

First, do not think long. Just go and do it. The fear goes away by acting and moving. When we were sitting and waiting for our swimming time, we overthought everything. What was real life? This was the best thing ever!

Secondly, sometimes we tend to forget the people who need our help and only, when the time of giving is there we open our eyes and start donating. To be honest we are no different.  We should do good and help others all year round. 

“Those who are happiest are those who do the most for others.”

Booker T. Washington

winter swimming

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