Day at the races

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As the #GetSpeedoFit experience draws to a close, Speedo gives the nation a chance to race our four challengers and some of Great Britain’s best swimmers

London 2012 may be little but a sweet memory, but its legacy lives on. Seeing the pros in action is what inspires us to get up and go, to finally push our bodies and take up a fitness regime ourselves. When it comes to swimming, seeing athletes such as Olympian Michael Jamieson gliding through the water reminds us how the pool can turn regular people into true specimens; into bastions of physical prowess.

How incredible an opportunity it is, then, to learn from the legends in the flesh. Not only that, but to put those lessons to use in the pool, swimming alongside the men and women who’ve brought home medals for Team GB.

This exact opportunity was extended to seven lucky competition winners who, alongside our four #GetSpeedoFit challengers, travelled to the London Aquatics Centre at the Olympic Park for a day they’d not soon forget.

During dry-land training lessons, the group learned how to mobilise their bodies like the pros, limbering up the joints responsible for record-breaking propulsion and endurance. Athletes James Guy, Jazz Carlin, and Siobhan-Marie O’Connor offered tips and tricks to entrants male and female, big and small, young and old. Suitable primed, everyone then took to the water for technique drills, which was the final prep before the main event: a chance to race against the pros. Nerves and bravado were in the air in equal measure.

In the 50m sprints, our challenger David Shephard shone, coming third after the two pro male swimmers. This is testament to his progress during the six-week challenge. The women’s sprint was equally exciting, with challengers and competition winners alike pushing themselves against two of female swimming’s heavyweights.

During a nerve-wracking relay race, our swimmers were able to team up with the pros, working in tandem to make the 50m distance in the best possible times. Valiant efforts from all made for an exciting race as the pros showed just what they are made of (while giving our civilian swimmers a fair chance, of course). Exhausted, exhilarated, our challengers and winners left with knowledge to add to their training arsenal. Whether that’ll make for any future Olympians is yet to be seen.

For now, we look forward to following the athletes journey on their Road to Rio.