Fitness Magazine

When Magic Happens

By Girlontheriver @girlontheriver

It was one of those outings that made you wish you hadn’t got out of bed. A raw wind was whipping across the river, chilling us to the bone and reducing our hands to stiff, red claws. We were permanently down on strokeside. Our cox was getting grumpy. We couldn’t hear the coach – a combination of the wind and the grumpy cox were drowning him out. All in all it was a bit grim.

When magic happens
And then something happened. During the final piece, something shifted. The balance improved. We were sitting up taller. Our strokes were longer and our catches crisper. The coach was coming through loud and clear and we could hear the excitement in his voice. For possibly the first time ever, we were rowing… well, like proper rowers. It was as though a little bit of magic dust had been sprinkled on the boat.

At my sons’ school there is a legend about a water nymph who dwells deep in the murky recesses of the river, and who very occasionally visits hapless rowers underwater when they have capsized, bestowing the gift of rowing upon them. When they emerge from the waters, their rowing is transformed, and no one can explain why.

Perhaps we’ve been wrong all along. Perhaps the rowing nymph doesn’t appear only when someone has capsized, but lies in wait until a rower (or in this case a whole crew) has got below a certain temperature before waving her watery wand.

If I’m right, the next time my fingers are aching and the wind is making my eyes water, I’ll just smile to myself. Some things are worth getting cold for.


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