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Sophie is Moving More in May for The Movement Centre
19 May 2022
by Sophie Coombs

Supporting local charities doing amazing things is so important to us, which is why it was a no-brainer for our Digital Account Manager Sophie to take part in Oswestry-based The Movement Centre’s Move More in May campaign!

The charity offers bespoke physiotherapy called Targeted Training to disabled children, drastically improving their mobility and changing their lives.

So how is Sophie moving more in May? She reveals all here…

29 seconds. 

That’s how long it used to take me to swim 50 metres freestyle. 

100 metres? 1 minute, 9 seconds.

The only thing is, I last swam these times nearly a decade ago. 

13-year-old me would tear up and down a swimming pool for two hours most days, completing around 200 lengths per session. Sometimes I’d even train twice a day.

But I’m not 13 anymore, and the last time I got in a pool and did some ‘proper swimming’ was at my last ever swimming gala in 2014. 

So why on earth am I challenging myself to swim 20 miles in May?!

Because The Movement Centre is completely worth it. 

The charity literally changes the lives of disabled children and their families; children who couldn’t sit up are now sitting with friends at school; toddlers who struggled to crawl are now running around their houses; youngsters who couldn’t move their heads at all can now follow what their friends are up to by turning their heads.

These are all things we take for granted because mobility and physical independence shouldn’t be a challenge. Sadly for some children, they are. 

That’s why I’m taking part in Move More in May!

What is Move More in May?

It’s a campaign hosted by (you guessed it) The Movement Centre to get people to move more (duh!) and raise money for the charity in the process.

All money raised will go towards supporting families going through Targeted Training. 

To be able to help, even in a small way, is the least I can do. 

Why swimming?

You’ll see from what I’ve written above, I used to be a pretty good swimmer. When I threw in the towel (pun very much intended) I was one millisecond off a national qualifying time. 

I thought I’d completely fallen out of love with it; in reality, I fell out of love with the constant galas and pressure to be better than my last swim. 

Wellington Leisure Centre has its own swimming pool so, at the start of this year, I thought I’d see how I got on with taking a dip before work.

I fell in love with it all over again.

Muscle memory is an amazing thing, but it can only get you so far. I’ve always been a fitness lover, but post-Covid my fitness definitely didn’t love me back. 

Each session I was getting that little bit further, going a little bit quicker, feeling a little bit stronger…

Before May, I was averaging 30-40 lengths per session, three times a week. Always one to push myself, I thought I’d do a swimming challenge for Move More in May. 

And 20 miles is going to be a challenge, there’s no doubt about that.

Why 20 miles?

10 miles would be very doable for me. 15 miles sounded a bit like I didn’t want to do 20 miles.

So here we are!

I’m swimming more each session and doing more sessions to get those lengths in - I need to swim 1,288 lengths (that’s 32,200 metres) this month to hit the 20-mile checkpoint. 

My plan was to do 64 lengths per session, five times a week. That way I get some rest, and have a set target for each session rather than swimming aimlessly. So far, it’s been working!

How am I doing?

Pretty well, if I do say so myself! I’ve raised over my fundraising target and at the time of writing I'm on track to complete the 20 miles (or 1,288 lengths) by the end of the month.

I’d be extremely grateful for any donations towards my swim. The Movement Centre is such a deserving charity and the money will certainly go to great use. You can donate to my JustGiving page here.

If not, just have a nosey at the work The Movement Centre does!