I’ve swum since I was younger with different swim groups. After my son was born I joined a masters swim club at UVic. I was a member for about a year and regularly went to practices 2-3 times a week. It’s more like an organized swim with a workout provided and you swim at your own pace. There were about 15 people UVic masters when I swam with them, sometimes as little as 3 showed up in the winter, up to 10 in the summer. This past September I joined the Victoria Masters Swim Club that swims out of the Crystal Pool. More competitive of a group, but fantastic coaches, and you get excellent instruction. I joined for the year but stopped going to practices when I got really sick with a chest cold this past March. I now swim on my own three times a week. As my midwife said, yes swimming is excellent now, but probably not the type you are used to in this stage of pregnancy = take it easy. With a group of people I find I push myself to keep up with them, which is great when you aren’t pregnant but not ideal at the current time.
I swim between the Crystal Pool and Commonwealth now. Crystal I have a pass from master club with, and Commonwealth I have a punch card. I think drop in is about $5.
I finally found a pregnancy lap swim suit and love it. We ended up ordering it online, from a recommendation on my post from my first pregnancy… thanks! We ordered the size they suggested for the size my regular suit was and it ended up being too large, so I ordered another one a size smaller. I still have the unused medium size thinking I may get big enough to fit into it near the end, but not sure if I will need it now. It’s a Lycra suit, so won’t last much longer than this pregnancy as the chlorine tends to eat them quickly. Not pregnant I wear a polyester suit now, which lasts and lasts and lasts… as the sales people say you will get tired of the style way before it wears out! I have to have thin straps on my polyester suits otherwise I get chapped marks on my neck and it looks like I have hickeys all the time. Putting on Vaseline on my neck prior to a swim workout also used to help. Lycra does not bother me.
Pools in Victoria….. now I am a swim snob. I like swimming laps in a pool with other people that obey swimming etiquette. Fast lane for fast swimmers, swim up the rope and down the middle, etc. Hard to find when swimming with the public. I find the cooler the pool, the more I can swim, and the less tired I feel. For example if I swim 1000m at the Commonwealth Pool in their competition pool, I swim faster and am less tired than swimming the same 1000m at the Crystal Pool.
I think the Commonwealth competition pool is the coolest pool in Victoria. Runner up is UVic’s McKinnon pool. Then perhaps the Crystal Pool, then Gordon Head…. Oak Bay Recreation Center being one of the warmest (those are the pools I frequent). None of this is scientific, it’s just how I feel when I get in and based on how I swim. I’ve never been to Juan de Fuca Recreation Center pool but have heard good things. Their kiddie pools apparently are among the warmest, so you aren’t too cold when you are with your little one not moving to keep warm and their larger pool I’ve also heard is nice to workout in.
Not being pregnant Commonwealth and UVic are my top choices for the best swim workout (out of the above). However pregnant the Crystal Pool works well as it cuts down on the Braxton Hicks when I get into the water, which seem exacerbated by the colder water.
Only issue with the Crystal is their large theft problem. I have started wearing my key to my locker on me now while I swim and take only my towel and shampoo to the pool deck. I heard of a swimmer in my club that left only her clothes in a locker, unlocked, and came back and someone had stolen her pants. Her pants!!! Who steals pants? She had to walk out in a towel. The other day a woman brought her back pack with her purse in it to the deck while she swum, which was within her sight for most of her swim. She picked up her bag and her purse was gone.
Swimming is also excellent for pregnant women. It’s not only weightless workout, it also helps get the baby into optimal fetal positioning.
Speaking of fetal positioning it seems my little one, as of my last midwife appointment a few days ago, is now head down. At this stage, I am 30 weeks along, my midwife reminds me that baby still has room to move and can move back to be head up and that is perfectly normal, but reassuring that she is head down for now.