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Her Spirit Winter Swim Challenge by Chris Onion

I’m quite surprised to be nominated for December as there are so many swimmers doing such inspiring stuff, and I feel quite chuffed. The Her Spirit Winter Swim Challenge motivates me to get in to the cold water to help my open water swimming over the summer.
The Challenge has given me the confidence to ditch my wetsuit and embrace skins swimming, especially wearing the silver lined swimsuits which Her Spirit helped to develop - they are fantastic!
Her Spirit isn’t just about open water swimming motivation though. There’s encouragement to sign up for different challenges and there’s a real pick and mix to allow you to do what works for you. I use the Her Spirit challenges, and coaching alongside my gym/pool membership to motivate myself to exercise and to achieve my goals - some things I would never have thought to try without the encouragement and support of the Her Spirit community such as the winter swim challenge, Lakes to London, Feet first February and the current Active every day in January challenge. I love the strength training, and the menopause support has been fantastic - the podcasts are a good listen, and a good starting point for anyone peri menopausal or menopausal to work out where to start and how you can support your own journey. There’s also information about fuelling to support your exercise and fitness journey - sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start, but the recent advice on the latest podcasts out making micro changes, rather than trying to change everything at once was invaluable.
The Her Spirit community is a supportive community of women who encourage, motivate, inspire and support, even when things don’t go according to plan. It’s certainly a case of ‘Together we’ve got this’ but also there’s a great attitude that sometimes things just don’t work out or go to plan, and sometimes ‘Together we haven’t got this, but we will talk about it, reflect and support each other through the tough times and learn so that we have got this’. That’s been important too - it’s all about trying, giving things a go and pushing out of your comfort zone (although I’m still not running with my gammy knee but I have been encouraged to get back on a cross-trainer this week so one step at a time - literally sometimes!) 

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