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Starting swimming, any advice?

Discussion in 'Sports Arena' started by Scam, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. Shamrock

    Soldato

    Joined: Jul 24, 2003

    Posts: 5,594

    Location: floating down the Liffey

    I'm not aware of any nasty creatures living in Lake Zurich :eek:
     
  2. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350

    All the tris around here are in water temperatures over the we-suit limit except the early spring ones.
     
  3. jpaul

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 1, 2010

    Posts: 6,422

    Anyone else tired with the lack of politeness and observance of other swimmers at their local pool ?
    This afternoon about 12 in the 25m pool, 2 in the double width faster lane, which I joined, swimming sides, so the cretin did not notice a 3rd person join and revert to swim up oneside/down the other protocol and we ended up on collision course half way down pool/crawling, I think he was genuinely not looking ahead !
    later on just other guy remained and nearly collided as he wondered onto wrong side. ( I can pretty much swim with eyes closed but do not normally when others in pool) .. with just 12 in the pool have pretty much checked out techniques and recognised many of swimmers after a couple of lengths - what are other people thinking about

    Similarly at more crowded time say 10 regulars in fast lane, say your are being overtaken and overtaking as you approach pool end, so 3 abreast, you can typically turn back through the middle of your neighbours if they are cooperative and they have their eyes open/brain turned on, but often end up in dead stop, because people unable to evaluate a complex traffic scenario.
     
  4. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350

    Luckily my pool rarely has more than 2 per lane, so we just swim one to each side.

    Whenever I have had to join someone I always waited ont he side to ask first. I can imagine if there is already 2 people it isn't so easy to get both their attentions. However, I think it is a fairly predictable situation. When i am swimming front crawl my head is pointing straight down, slight angle of like 20*. I have absolutely no idea who is in front of me. Looking up messes up my balance and breathing.
     
  5. madindehead

    Mobster

    Joined: May 30, 2009

    Posts: 4,571

    Location: Maidenhead

    I'm looking to get back into a bit of swimming, to help with my overall fitness (main focus is on cycling however).

    Do you guys have any resources that you've found useful online? For example training plans etc? I used to swim a lot when I was younger, so my technique might not be terrible (been a while though, so it could be).

    I'm mainly looking for something with a bit of structure, maybe 30-60 mins of swimming to begin with :)
     
  6. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350

    Had a good swim this morning, got my fastest time for my 2250yards, down to 48:48. I've had several weeks of disappointing swimming so it was nice to make some progress, knocking a full minute off my PB. Still slow compared to most but I getting there
     
  7. jpaul

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 1, 2010

    Posts: 6,422

    90 lengths, continuous ? sounds good -
    if you time individual lengths how does that evolve during swim , I normally hammer the last 20 lengths or so at a pace I could probably not sustain for all the exercise so for me about 30s a length and the previous 80 ones about 37s . Plus depending on others in the pool maybe trying to keep up or catch-up.

    I never push-off with any force this article suggests push off speed 3m/s (+50%) vs stroke 2m/s, so if I achieved same ratio and push off lasted 4m, might knock off 1.5/2s (don't know if there are watches that would record speed change)


    sorry madindehead I am not disciplined enough to have a plan, my bucket list is :
    bilateral, trying one of the biofuse handpaddles mentioned earlier to improve catch.
     
  8. Shamrock

    Soldato

    Joined: Jul 24, 2003

    Posts: 5,594

    Location: floating down the Liffey

    I'm done with swimming! Now that I've completed my Ironman I have no desire or need to swim frequently anymore. :D

    I completed the 3800m swim in 91mins which is pretty much what I expected with a wetsuit. I should have been a bit quicker actually but I managed to go off-course at one point and had to waste time and effort getting back on track. The buoys clearly weren't big and orange enough!

    The water was quite wavy at some points and people kept crossing into my line, the joys of open water swimming!

    The joy of exiting the swim is palpable...

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2016
  9. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350



    I generally do 10 length sets with a 15-40 second rest, the time taken is form jumping in the pool to getting out so includes all rests. Sometimes I will do a 20 length set, and if I get tired I sometime drop to a 6 length or 6+4 with10 second rest etc. I normally alternate 1 set of straight front crawl with 1 set of a drill, either using a pool buoy or snorkel and tryignt ot focus on the catch. I have been experimenting with these finger paddle things but find them horrible to use and I end up extremely slow and disorientated.

    So yeah, that isn't 90 lengths/2250 yards in 1 continuous set of pure front crawl but serves as a consistent distance for me to measure progress. Actual swim time is about 44 minutes.

    In general the first sets are the fastest now, didn't used to be. But the last sets are the most comfortable, I relax a lot more as I get tired. I do push hard on the last set and they are sometimes my fastest.
     
  10. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350



    So you not looking to do more Triathlons in the future? I know Ironman Tris are often a1 and done bucket list for a lot of people but wondered after all that effort if you wouldn't want to keep it up or do Half IM that has far less training load?

    90 minutes is good time. That is what I figure in my head if I do an IM in the next year or 2. 90min swim, 6..5-7.0hour bike, 3..5-4hour run.


    Shamrock, I did a kind of half IM yesterday. Swam about 2060m but in a pool, then cycle 56 miles, started a run very dehydrated with a lot of water in mys stomach. It had a relative heat index of 44*C so I bailed after 2 miles fearing heat stroke and feeling sick. But hey, I ran 18miles this morning! T1 was about 1 hour as I had to drive home form the pool, take out baby car seats, get the bike in and drive 30 minutes to a cycle path. Sill, was a lot of fun.
     
  11. Shamrock

    Soldato

    Joined: Jul 24, 2003

    Posts: 5,594

    Location: floating down the Liffey

    Nice one! You should just sign yourself up for a full. That's what I did last August and then you have no excuses but to get training.

    After London Tri on August 7th I will have completed 2 Olympics (aiming for sub-2h30m next weekend), 1 Half Ironman (4h59m) and 1 Full Ironman (11h3m). That's plenty! I gave triathlon a good shot but I think I'll focus on my strengths which are cycling and running, so I'll look at duathlon or cycle racing.

    I'm just not very good at swimming so I'll never be competitive at triathlon. Also, I find many aspects of it are not that fun so that really kills my motivation to try and improve.

    My main gripes with swimming are... that I'm always cold even indoors, my local pool is too crowded and I just find it quite mind-numbing!
     
  12. jpaul

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 1, 2010

    Posts: 6,422

    Agree ambiance of the pool is important, currently travel about 20miles to get to mine, could go to a crowded/ claustophobic one about a mile away, really have to adapt sports to where you live and what is enjoyable (was living near an outdoor 50m difficult to refuse) - but swimming is also an upper body work out,more fun than gym - so good part of a balanced exercise diet, have thought I would try rowing/canoing if a pool became inaccesible or getting back into climbing (surprised me no active thread here)
     
  13. Shamrock

    Soldato

    Joined: Jul 24, 2003

    Posts: 5,594

    Location: floating down the Liffey

    Rock climbing is my upper body sport :)

    The thread here is pretty dead. I think I was the only one who posted in it!:p
     
  14. jpaul

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 1, 2010

    Posts: 6,422

    well I would trade a swimming pool for a nice piece of granite or gritstone up the road - just an indoor wall here.
    [someone on OC recently made a comment about Discovery 'valley.uprising yosemite' film - which was worth searching out]

    (I partly started swimming to re-dress the asymmetrical muscle development climbing promotes and also help with tendonitus type issues.)
     
  15. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350

    The problem with swimming is you go to the same pool each day to swim the same 25m up and down, up and down, up and down. Every day and every week and every month it is basically the same conditions. Compare that to anything outside where you choose where to go, every day can be different, every 5 minutes is different, the weather form 21 day to the next makes a big difference, the seasons make a huge difference. No run or cycle is ever the same.


    That is partly why i don't go to the pool too often. I really don't want to get bored too soon in this endeavor. People say that running is boring but gees, if running is boring how dull must swimming be? Now I fully understand why some people might love swimming and never ever think it is boring, but its just a fact of life that winter, spring summer, fall makes bugger all difference, 6am, vs lunch, thus 6pm is all the same. A pool is a pool. no one cares about the color of the lane floats. You do something outside and the environment is so different throughout the year and time of day.
     
  16. Shamrock

    Soldato

    Joined: Jul 24, 2003

    Posts: 5,594

    Location: floating down the Liffey

    But you can't train without going to the pool. Practising in the bath doesn't count!:D

    Open water swimming is slightly more enjoyable but outdoor lidos are far too cold for me outside of highest summer.
     
  17. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350

    I meant I don't go to the pool too often yet because I don't want to get bored of swimming just yet!

    The outdoor pools here are crazy expensive. 2K Club joining fee and then like 1.5K a year, open from June 1 to September 5th.
     
  18. jpaul

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 1, 2010

    Posts: 6,422

    yes, I only go twice a week, picking time when the pool is not too full and the traffic permits me to get there; but I can see if you have a particular target in mind this may not be often enough, and need to be more disciplined about what you do when you are there.
    I think there is a zen aspect of doing many lengths and can think of other things more so than when you have to pay attention cycling or running. potholes/footfall.
    Winter time when cannot cycle after work, swimming comes into its own (cycling indoors pretty boring, prefer indoor rowing machine)
    swimming is not really social enough either, but if you are typically running/cycling from your door they are not either.
    Learning other strokes in the pool , dolphin would give variety/reduce boredom and probably help crawl too (core strength, aerobic capability) do not know how much cross-strokes the pro's do.
     
  19. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 29,350

    Maybe if you are a good swimmer then you can zone out but I find i am really concentrating and not particular comfortable. If I let my mind wonder then I totally forget to breath correctly or my legs sink, or stroke degrades. When I go running I totally zone out and think about other things.

    I'm not a trying to dish swimming, there are some good points about it. Its a very different kind of activity to running or swimming, a lot of good core strength and upper body workouts. The water has some therapeutic values for sore legs etc. Its a totally different environment to running or cycling through the air, just being in the water is pretty unique. And for better or worse it is mostly about technique and not fitness which can be frustrating but is an interesting challenge. Weather can never be an excuse. No impact forces and minimal risk of joint issues. And it may save your life one day.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2016
  20. jpaul

    Soldato

    Joined: Mar 1, 2010

    Posts: 6,422

    Agree, maintaining the stroke needs some bandwidth, breathing becomes very comfortable though, as second nature as for running, where you naturally synchronise it with your pace (obviously cycling less so since stroke much faster)
    Natural to the point that you do not notice your head is in water most of the time, and it just so happens that whenever you need a breathe just open you mouth and take it, and it somehow works out - intuitive.