What was the Challenge:
For Cian to complete 30 days in a row of cold dips. The default location was at Kits Beach here in Vancouver, BC. The challenge was finished successfully on Nov 25th. The water temperature was mostly 8-9C in the ocean and a bit colder in the rivers. The average dip time was over 6 minutes. The dip time varied from day to day mostly late morning time.
As a Wim Hof Instructor I was quite aware of many of many of the benefits of cold water dipping but I had never completed a long stint of consecutive dips before. It seemed like a necessary rights of passage to go through.
The challenge wasn't easy. There were days when the weather, the tides, my mood and whatever else didn't seem to be aligning. Those days turned out to be extra rewarding. Dealing with all the wet towels and sand in the house was an inconvenience that I didn't;t anticipate but I got over that. I also learned that doing longer dips multiple days in a row can create some tension in the body. It tells you where in your body needs some TLC.
I have had my far share of experiences over the years when I have had a desire to commit to a health challenge and then don't end up following through. Perhaps you can relate? The desire can easily wane and dilute after a few days or so. This time was different and it felt very satisfying. I have a lot of respect for cold water therapy and I have respect for myself and anyone else who has seen something like this through! Self respect was one powerful takeaway from the challenge.
I decided to do the challenge offline. I didn't do any recording and only shared with family and a few close friends or if it came up in conversation. This was another big take away. Doing something for yourself is completely different, especially in todays age of sharing and highlighting so much of our lives. In some ways it's harder without the moral support and camaraderie to keep you going. However when doing this 30 days in a row, going solo was in fact easier to meet my commitment each day. There are less variables when you are alone. You are relying on just your own day, energy levels etc. Cold dipping is an amazing way to connect with nature. It feels like you are really in and a part of nature rather than an observer. Going solo really helps you to connect with yourself as it's just you who is involved. I love dipping with friends and this has it's own benefits as social beings. Dipping alone seems to make you face your own stuff more.
I was reminded by how much you can get done when you do something every day. I was in the water for over 3 hours total. If I did one 3-4 min dip a week it would take me over a year to accumulate the same time in there. Going more frequently makes it easier to do longer dips too. Three plus hours with myself and nature was a powerful way of connecting with myself and with nature which to me seems like some of the best medicine one could get. The thought I was left with is what else could I do in 30 days? It even got me thinking about business tasks that I sometimes avoid - I could potentially do a years worth of work in one moth with a solid commitment.
The key takeaways were a deep sense of connection, improvement in mood and respect for myself.
What can you do if you are committed to 30 days of something?