Swimwear for Bigger Busts- plus Bravissimo giveaway

Swimwear for Bigger Busts

Recently I had a request from a reader for recommendations on swimwear with more support for bigger busts. Personally, I don’t have particularly big boobs so it’s not an area I have much experience with, but I wanted to do some research and suggest some options for her. Feeling comfortable in your swimwear goes a long way towards feeling confident in the water. There’s nothing worse than a swimsuit that needs adjusting at the end of each length!

Here’s four of the best swimsuits for bigger busts…

Swimwear for bigger busts

  1. Speedo Premiere Ultimate Swimsuit

The Speedo Premiere Ultimate is available in E-K cup and has internal underwire, full cups, a low scoop back and extra support in Xtra Life soft Lycra. The fabric is comfortable, stretchy and quick-drying so that you can get the most out of your swim.

2. Aqua Sphere Chloe Swimsuit

The Chloe by Aqua Sphere is available up to bust size 46. It has bust lining for support, a tummy control panel, criss-cross back and low leg. It’s made in Aqua Infinity fabric which is a breathable yet highly chlorine resistant fabric- capable of lasting over 200 hours in chlorinated water.

3. Speedo Fit Kickback Swimsuit

Another Speedo suit which comes highly recommended- it features bust support, wide comfortable straps and chlorine resistance Endurance+ fabric. The higher back provides more support than open-back swimsuits. Available up to bust size 42.

4. Zoggs Brisbane Wire-Free Sports Swimsuit

The Zoggs Brisbane has wire-free integral bra support and a lower leg for more coverage. The X-Back pulls the straps to the centre of the back, allowing for greater freedom of movement in the shoulders. I’m a fan of Zoggs swimwear and actually have this suit myself and have found it lasts incredibly well without fading or loosing shape.

 

I’m giving away a £30 voucher for Bravissimo, so if your swimsuit needs replacing enter your details and visit my Facebook page for a chance to win. Bravissimo have a huge range of lingerie, swimwear and clothing for women who are a D-L cup, their mission is to inspire big boobed women to feel amazing!

Giveaway ends midnight on 16th September 2017. Winner announced 17th September.

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Swimming the Solent- I did it!

Swimming the Solent

I did it, I swam the Solent! It was an incredible experience, I’m still on a high a few days later.

For those who are not regular readers, I’ve been training to swim from mainland England to the Isle of Wight as my main challenge for the year. The big day came around on Saturday and we were incredibly lucky with the weather. There was bright sunshine, a gentle breeze and flat sea- we couldn’t have asked for better conditions.

Here’s how the day went..

The Aspire swimmers met in Haslar Marina, Gosport at 11.30am, where we were issued with a number and coloured swimming cap. The 12 swimmers had been split into 3 groups, based on our mile swim time. The idea was that the slower swimmers would set off first, followed by the medium then fast swimmers- we would eventually meet up and come into Ryde as group. I’d been allocated to the fast swim group based on a predicted mile time of 32-33 minutes. I hoped I hadn’t overestimated myself! There were only two women in the group… #thisgirlcan

Swimming the Solent

Next, we were given a Tupperware box to hold any mid-swim snacks and other items. I packed a bag of Jelly Babies and a spare pair of goggles. These would be kept on the kayak, incase we needed to access them during the swim. We were also given a dry-bag to hold our clothes to change into after the swim. It was soon time to slip on our wetsuits and listen to the safety briefing. Glen headed off to board the spectators boat. Things were starting to get very real!

The swimmers were then loaded onto RIB boat which would transport us to the starting point at Fort Gilkicker. Having to wear a life jacket on the boat was quite ironic, given what we were about to do! The boat sped out of the marina and into the Solent creating waves- suddenly the water didn’t seem so calm! The Isle of Wight, our final destination was clearly visible across the water although it did seem quite a distance away. There was a nervous atmosphere on the boat as we all questioned what we were about to let ourselves in for. There were jokes about borrowing the outboard motor to give us a helping hand!

Swimming the Solent

The RIB brought us close to the shore as possible, then we were transferred onto another smaller boat which moved us to onto the beach. Here, we were introduced to our kayakers (I think mine was called Pete). My dry-bag was loaded into the hold beneath the kayak and my Tupperware box and drink bottle were placed on top. I asked my kayaker to stay to my right and slightly ahead of me. He would be guiding me and keeping me on course for Ryde beach. I wouldn’t need to worry about sighting- just keep following the kayak. It was quite nice to have my own personal navigator!

Swimming the Solent

Wetsuit zipped up, final adjustments made and a short dip in the sea. Just after 1pm, the slower swimmers slid into the water, shortly followed by the medium group. Finally it was time for my group to begin our swim. I hit start on my Garmin and took my first stroke. I felt as though I set off quite quickly as I was excited to be moving- I tried to slow down and pace myself.

Turning to breathe, I could see the white sails of the yachts on the water. Below, all I could see was a turquoise haze. I sensed the spectator boat on my left with Glen snapping photos, but I was breathing to the right so I couldn’t see him. Occasionally, my kayaker would tell me that we were turning slightly right. I kept the yellow point of the kayak in my sight and tried not to drift too far away. Later I found out that the swimmers ahead had been stopped to let a tanker and container ship pass, but fortunately I had been guided away from that.

Swimming the Solent

I wondered if I had caught up with the other swimmers or whether I was at the back of the pack. It was difficult to tell where I was in relation to others. Occasionally, I’d look at my Garmin under the water. I passed the 1 mile in around 32 minutes- at least my predicated pace was correct!

I didn’t think about too much as I swam. I just focused on turning my arms over and pulling as strongly as I could. The water wasn’t choppy, but there were waves moving me up and down. I felt as though I was swimming diagonally, which I actually was as the path of the swim forms a curve. The weather really was gorgeous- the suns rays shone through the water and bubbles trailed from my arms like glitter.

I’ve visited the Isle of Wight for school trips as a child and again for a wedding in 2011. I’ve always gone on the ferry like a normal person, so it seemed very bizarre to be swimming across the Solent. It’s something I never would have considered when I started swimming lessons four years ago, but I’ve really fallen in love with open water challenges.

After some time, my kayaker told me that I’d reached halfway. He pointed out a buoy but I couldn’t see it! I stopped for a quick glug of my drink, then carried on.

Swimming the Solent

Swimming the Solent

Swimming the Solent

Sometimes I would feel seaweed brush against my hands and feet. Fortunately I didn’t come across any jellyfish, but later my kayaker told me he had spotted them although they didn’t come near me. My hands started to go numb and my goggles felt tight against my face, I was looking forward to taking them off. I felt like I needed to sneeze as the salty water was irritating my nose.

Meanwhile, Glen was having great fun on the RIB. Every time a boat came in the direction of the swimmers, the RIB would speed away to warn them of our presence. He felt like he was in Miami Vice! It was the jetskiiers who were the biggest worry as they were driving erratically. I must admit I was totally oblivious to any traffic in the Solent, I just kept on swimming.

Sometimes I would look up towards the island. There are two church spires and we were aiming between those. I saw 4km pass on my watch and wondered how much further it would be. The swim was starting to feel very long! I swam through some very warm patches of water and almost wondered if someone had just pee’d there.

Swimming the Solent

Swimming the Solent

Swimming the Solent

More seaweed appeared in the water and I swam through big clumps. Suddenly sand appeared below me, I had almost made it! The sandbank comes out a long way from the beach at Ryde, so it’s possible to walk the rest of the way in. I stood up and thanked my kayaker as I waded through the shallow water to the Aspire flag on the beach. I hit stop on my Garmin, making it 4.6km in 1 hour and 48 minutes.

Several swimmers were already on the beach, but more were still out in the water. It turned out I had caught and overtaken some of the slow and medium paced swimmers. I unzipped my wetsuit, ate some Jelly Babies and sat down in the shallow water. I looked back at where I’d just swam from, it felt surreal. I saw hovercraft launching from the port beside the beach, gliding over the sand and into the water.

Before long, it was time to get back on the smaller boat which took us to the RIB. We congratulated each other on our successful swims- everyone had done amazingly well. We held on tight as the boat bounced across the water at top speed, taking only around 10 minutes to get back to the marina. That was the most fun part of the day!

Swimming the Solent

Swimming the Solent

Aspire had organised a celebratory meal back in Gosport Marina. Unfortunately only two swimmers were able to attend, which meant we got double-helpings of the chicken curry.

I must admit I’m now quite tempted by a channel relay. Definitely something to target in the future. Aspire were a great charity to swim for, everything was perfectly organised and ran smoothly. I’m delighted to have raised nearly £1300 for people with spinal cord injuries, everyone had donated so generously. There’s still time to add to my fundraising via my Just Giving page.

Have you even been to the Isle of Wight? 

Training to swim the Solent

Swim the Solent

In just four weeks I’ll be swimming the Solent. As with many challenges, it seemed so far away when I signed up, but the date quickly approaches!

A few people have asked me what and where exactly the Solent is (someone even thought it was in Bristol). The Solent is the strait which separates mainland England from the Isle of Wight. It’s a major shipping lane and is also used for yachting and recreational water sports. The width varies from 2.5 to 5 miles (4-8km). I’ll be swimming at the narrowest point- from Gosport to Ryde.

I’m feeling reasonably confident about my swim. I’ve completed several longer swims in open water, as well as shorter pool-based sessions. Here’s how my training has been going…

Great London Swim

I find it helpful to take part in a race as training towards a larger event. The Great London Swim had a range of distances so I opted for the 2 miles (3.2km) to build up towards the Solent. I’ve swam and paddle-boarded at the Royal Victoria Dock before so I’m familiar with the water there. It’s very deep and tastes slightly of diesel and salt.

Glen was taking part in the 5km, so we got down to the dock early for his wave. The atmosphere at the Great London Swim was much quieter than I was expecting. I imagined the it would be on par with the Great Runs, but it was quite subdued. I think the 1 mile swim was the more popular distance.

The course is two large laps of the dock marked out with buoys. I was alone for much of it as the pack quickly spread out. There wasn’t the frenzied rush you get at the start of a triathlon.

Solent the Swim

Swimming events are always a little strange. At a running or cycling event, you might chat to other participants, hear the noise of the spectators, maybe listen to music and see different sights along the way. When you are swimming, there is sensory deprivation in that the only sounds you hear is the water rushing past and your own breathing. You catch a glimpse of your surroundings as you turn to breathe, but for the most part you are in your own head completely. It’s about getting into a rhythm and just relaxing.

I finished in 1:05:23 which I was very pleased with. It was a confidence boost to complete a longer continuous swim in open water.

Swim the Solent

Aspire Training Day in Dover

The charity who I am swimming with hosted a training day in Dover in mid-July. It was a great chance to get in another long swim as well as have my questions answered and fears put to rest. Dover Harbour is where swimmers training for the English Channel tend to congregate on weekends, but due to construction works most of them had moved their training to Hythe.

We were encouraged to swim for up to 2 hours, as this is the maximum amount of time it should take to cross the Solent. I decided to aim for 90 minutes and see how much distance I covered in that time.

I had only been in the water for about 10 minutes when I felt a prickling sensation on my face. It was similar to the feeling of a stinging nettle. I realised I’d been stung by a jellyfish, although I couldn’t see anything in the water. I carried on with my swim hoping that I didn’t come across anymore jellyfish. There was no swelling or marks on my face when I finished, so it must have been a very mild sting. Luckily, it’s just a myth that urine soothes jellyfish stings!

I took it easy and swam slowly up and down the harbour, this was more about time in the water rather than racing. There were areas were we had been told to avoid as they have sharp rocks, so I was conscious of giving them a wide berth. The water was calm and flat- hopefully I get the same conditions at my Solent Swim.

Swim the Solent

In the 90 minutes, I covered 4km and felt as if I could have easily continued. We were handed jelly-babies as we got out of the sea, the sweet taste was amazing after being in salty water for so long.

Aspire talked us through the logistics of the swim. There will be 12 of us swimming, each with our own kayaker who will hold our drinks and any food. The RIB boats and kayakers will guide and protect us from any larger vessels in the sea, so the swimmers will be totally safe. Glen will be spectating from a motor launch boat, so hopefully he can get some videos and photos. The swim will only go ahead if the winds are below gale force 3, so I’ll be obsessively checking the weather in the days leading up to 2nd September!

 

Swim the Solent

I’ve also been swimming in local lakes every weekend, building up the distance. I hope to get in a few more 4km+ swims before the Solent.

My biggest challenge was meeting my fundraising target, but I’m delighted to have exceeded it already. The donations I’ve received total over £1000 and all go to support people paralysed by spinal injury. Thank you to everyone who has contributed- I’d still love appreciate other donations which can be made here.

Have you ever been stung by a jellyfish? Have you ever been to the Solent?

How to cope with a non-wetsuit swim in a triathlon

Panicking about a non-wetsuit swim? It can be a little daunting, but with these tips there's no need to let a lack of rubber ruin your triathlon

The recent hot weather has resulted in lake temperatures rising to something resembling a warm bath. British Triathlon Federation competition rules state that wetsuits are forbidden in water temperatures above 22°c, so it’s likely that many races over the coming weekend will be declared non-wetsuit.

Swimming without a wetsuit can be incredibly daunting when you’ve practiced all season in that protective neoprene layer. Triathletes tend to rely on their wetsuit for buoyancy and speed- a non-wetsuit race can send even the most experienced athletes into a panic. However there’s no need to let the lack of rubber ruin your race, here are some tips to bear in mind if you are faced with a non-wetsuit triathlon…

Get in some practice

If time allows, head over to your local lake for a few training laps in just your trisuit. Get used to the feeling of the water on your skin as you move through the water- it’s quite a different sensation. You will be less buoyant and may need to consider your body position in the water, remember to keep your head, hips and heels in line.

Trust in your training

Remember that you are more than capable of swimming the distance. Look back over your training and remind yourself of the miles you’ve swam in the pool all without a wetsuit- you can do it!

Control the controllables

The water temperature is a factor completely beyond your control– don’t waste vital energy worrying about it. Focus on the aspects which you can control- your nutrition, your equipment and your attitude.

Be prepared

Usually the call is made on race morning regarding the use of wetsuits, so it’s worth bringing yours incase there is a last-minute change. The weather is unpredictable and an unexpected cold spell might mean that wetsuits are an option once again.

Think of the positives

Without a wetsuit, your transition times will be quicker- no more fumbling with the zip as you come out of the water. You won’t get any chafing around your neck and you won’t have to rinse and dry your wetsuit after the race.

Relax and enjoy

Swimming is always more effortless when you relax. Tensing up will hinder your stroke and prevent you from gliding through the water. It’s rare that we get to swim non-wetsuit in the UK so make the most of the opportunity before the lakes return to icy temperatures!

Have you ever swam non-wetsuit in a race? How did you get on?