General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Done a 250m ocean swim now 500m help please Rss Feed  
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2013-12-13 2:34 AM

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Subject: Done a 250m ocean swim now 500m help please
Hi there

I am new to the sport and taking small steps to my long term goal of IM - I can swim in the pool ok (learnt 12 months ago ) and can swim 1-2k ok.
I have now done 2 x 250 meter mini ocean swim "races" 1st one I struggled 2nd much better but not completely comfortable , I have also had a pecan lesson where I swam 500 meters ( with some stops)

But my question when are you ready for the next step ? up to in this case 500meters I look out at the ocean and think wow that seems far but it's only a 'bit' further , is it a case of just doing it ? Go for it , surely the 250 swim will nevr be perfecto

Any tips on growing swim race distnace and help on taking the next step would be cool - thanks , should I spend more time in the pool building strength ? How many times a week etc


2013-12-13 12:34 PM
in reply to: Bigdave001

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Subject: RE: Done a 250m ocean swim now 500m help please
If you can do 2k in the pool, you should physically be able to do 2k in the ocean. It's all mental. It's amazing what you can get used to but you have to do it to get used to it. It the water's bumpy, just roll further for your breaths, sometimes you'll have to breath away from the waves. Keep pushing your comfort level bit by bit and you'll soon be happy to jump into the big blue and knock out a mile or two. Advice, swim in open water as much as you can.
2013-12-13 12:59 PM
in reply to: La Tortuga

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Subject: RE: Done a 250m ocean swim now 500m help please

Originally posted by La Tortuga If you can do 2k in the pool, you should physically be able to do 2k in the ocean. It's all mental. It's amazing what you can get used to but you have to do it to get used to it. It the water's bumpy, just roll further for your breaths, sometimes you'll have to breath away from the waves. Keep pushing your comfort level bit by bit and you'll soon be happy to jump into the big blue and knock out a mile or two. Advice, swim in open water as much as you can.

This is great advice. It's ALL about confidence, when it comes to OWS.
You are already physically capable of going the distance (although from a physical exertion perspective, 1mi OWS > 1mi pool in my opinion), you just need to overcome the trepidation hurdle.

Just keep practicing, whenever you can, 2-3x a week of OWS practice should be plenty.

From my own experience, I was a somewhat capable lap swimmer when I first hopped in Lake Michigan, and I went from zero - 1mi in about 3 weeks. My first time, I barely made it 100yds before stopping, but gradually built to 1/4mi, then 1/2mi, etc...

2013-12-13 2:20 PM
in reply to: Bigdave001


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Subject: RE: Done a 250m ocean swim now 500m help please
In my opinion you have four issues to overcome to be able to do the swim portion.

1. To be able to swim the distance without being overly tired at the end of the swim. Sounds like you are accomplishing this goal by being able to swim 1k-2k. It takes time to gradually build up to the distance. Depending upon the event and your speed, you will be in the water over an hour. You just need to be able to come out of the water feeling fairly good.
2. To be able to swim in "black water". Most train in a pool and they get in the ocean or a lake and realize that you can't see anything. This tends to scare some people. Even though you only did a short race, the fact that the black water was not an issue is big.
3. To be able to swim in traffic. This is another area that tends to scare people and prohibit them from accomplishing their goal. Keep in mind that the traffic is only bad for about 5 to 10 minutes, but you can see people struggle with the challenge.
4. To be able to swim in a straight line. I pick a marker, tree, boat, or anything which can give me a good sight line. Its amazing how many people add a huge amount of distance to the race by going all over the place.

Based upon your comments and what you have accomplished so far, I don't think this is as much of as issue as you think it is. Keep in mind that I am not a fast racer, my goal is only to finish. My times will not impress anyone.

My two cents.
2013-12-13 3:47 PM
in reply to: #4912591

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Subject: RE: Done a 250m ocean swim now 500m help please
Yes, you should definitely be spending time in the pool. Personally I swimi 3x per week in a masters programs. OWS are important to master, but it is important to build your endurance with regular pool workouts....unless you are strictly OW training.
2013-12-15 3:39 PM
in reply to: dace

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Subject: RE: Done a 250m ocean swim now 500m help please
thanks everyone for your replys


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