Dark Month Survival: Part One

November can be a rut. A grey and dismal month, (thankfully with one grand meal to share). But you can combat November’s dreariness by making a simple plan. Keep your sanity. Your waistline. Your sense of adventure. With a plan you can stick to. One that feeds you. What am I referring to? Find a pool. Dive in!


In my geographical region, the northeast, finding a pool means finding an indoor pool. And lucky for me, this pristine beauty is only minutes from my home. I can hear your first resistance, oh, a pool membership is too pricey for me. Well yes, you do have to pay for an opportunity like this, but let me be the first to remind you, You’re Worth It. By my calculations it will only take a few monetary adjustments to fund this plan, and I have a suggestion for that too. Avoid Starbucks. Instead make your own coffee or tea in the morning before you leave the house, and fill a thermos (or in my case, I pack two!). While you’re at it, pack a lunch. Those two shifts alone will save you minimally $10.00 a day and will more than cover any monthly pool fee.

Still wondering why a pool membership? This essay, “Why Choose Swimming?” details numerous reasons but here are the basics. Swimming engages all your large muscles without a detrimental impact on the body. Yes, I stated ALL. Now that’s a workout to consider. Need more convincing? Swimming increases heart rate and circulation. Swimming works your lungs too. But beyond the physical, swimming elevates your mental state from good to fabulous (and swimming allows you to leave your cell phone in a locker, so that mood is guaranteed to soar uninterrupted).

Some days I hit the water and feel as thought I am racing like a dolphin across the surface, other days I sink a bit with each struggling stroke; but no matter how I enter the pool, my troubles dissolve down into the deep. Whether you decide to swim competitively with the Masters or use your pool time to float and stare up at the ceiling, being weightless in water is transforming. And a pool is a place to play. Splash about. If your club has a slide, stand on line with the kiddies and take a ride down. They will look up at you and smile a knowing smile. Yes, they will tell you, this is what it’s all about at the end of the day.

slideSo, just to recap: survival plan part one is find a pool and get in the water regularly. Set a goal for number of laps and swimming time you can live with. Go before work or afterwards. Either way, make a date with yourself. Save your coffee money and instead spend it on a pool membership. Do so and you will beat the November doldrums with ease. Next week, I’ll share part two…


7 thoughts on “Dark Month Survival: Part One

    • I am so lucky that my pool uses gentle chemicals– but I wash my hair immediately afterwards. You can also add a layer of conditioner to your hair, then put on your cap, before you hit the pool. This process should help!


  1. I swim 2x a week. I do 20 laps in an olympic sized pool……We have warm salt water(most good pools have switched to salt) and it doesn’t bother my hair….I start out thinking of nothing….I do count the laps…..but nothing else enters my mind.It’s like a meditation….relaxing,sweet. The pool I belong to in New Jersey,plays lovely “spa” music in the shower,sauna,dressing area….I count on that to keep me relaxed……I’m 87 years old and swimming is most delightful to me…..Twenty years ago,one of my daughters bought the pool time for my husband and me……I have continued after he died. Swimming keeps me fit and looking at my waist in the bathing suit.Gulp!!!! At least it’s there…..with other stuff. I love it!!!!

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