Thursday, June 25, 2015

Training for My First Ironman at 67--Open Water Swimming

Just a quick update:  After my poor swim in the Half Ironman my tri coach—not my swim coach—got in the pool with me and broke down my kick and stroke.  An ugly picture.  My swim coach did a good job of improving my swim.  In September when I started working with her I couldn’t swim 25 yards.  But there is swimming and then there is swimming as the first leg of a triathlon—especially at half and full Ironman lengths. 

Then the tri coach went to work on my head.  As inefficient as my swimming is, he pounded home that my fitness was sufficient to muscle my way around 1.2 miles (but not 2.4 miles).  My troubles in open water were all in my head.

I won’t bother you with all the drills/exercises he put me through but the good news is that I am now much more comfortable in open water and have done a couple of 1,000 yards swims this week.  I have learned how to recover my breathing and heart rate when either gets too fast and to relax in the water when I need to (like when I get kicked in the face).  Things I could not do on the Half Ironman.

With 8 or 9 open water workouts remaining I am confident that I can get build up to 2,000 yards during an open water workout.  If I can do 2,000-yard workouts I can do the 4,000+ during the race.

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