This is the second posting of Training Tuesday and after last weeks background check today is all about what I’m doing now! As most of you will know I’ve had to delay the trip by twelve months due to a variety of mainly economic reasons but training is still going ahead full speed. I average between 3 and 8hours of swimming every day with most of that being outdoors.
Swimming outdoors is amazing and now with the temperature increasing I’m planning on spending all my time outdoors only popping back to the pool for a bit of drill and timed speed work.
The video below is a short glimpse into my day to day routine. The four key points to outdoor swimming are:
1) Never swim alone.
2) Always know your limits and exit points!
3) A decent silicon hat (and vaseline) are the most important things on any swim!
4) Always have your bag packed so the things you need first (towel, hat, shoes) are to hand.
The first two or three minutes once you get out of the water are key. Having a set routine for when you get out vastly reduces your chances of being caught out by the cold. Below is a few paragraphs sent by Nick Adams (multiple English Channel swimmer and vastly experienced open water swimmer):
On the SwimTrek Gozo Long Distance tours we drilled into them to prepare their bags before they get in the water, and to pack them with the things they will need first right on top.
When you get out, you have 2-3 mins before you are in real trouble, you’ll think you’re ok, but you are not, and that vital time is ticking away if you hang around for a chat. ROUTINE!
Crocs/Flip Flops on
Towel around top half of body
Walk quickly to bag
Beanie straight on
Dry top half of body
Put ALL your top half clothes on
Towel around waist
Strip swimming kit off, put new dry ones on
Socks and shoes on
THEN, and only then, you can start talking to others about the swim
This should take under 2 mins to do from exiting the water! Pack your bag CAREFULLY with towel on top, then beanie….
Mentally prepare for your swim AND your post-swim-routine, it’s absolutely vital!
If you’re tempted to come and swim outdoors in the UK-and you should be it amazing how beautful the world is from a swimmers perspective-then get involved with the Outdoor Swimming Society. They have group swims all over the country and have a map on their website showing where all the best spots are for a dip! Or e-mail me and I’ll come and swim with you!