Swimming for Hammers and Spoons


Is that better or worse than 7.5km straight of pull & paddles

6 times 50 1:30 off 2mins then 10 times 1:35 off 2 mins. Hit each one reasonably comfortably

Swim in pool.is definately getting faster. Interested to see how pace translates to OW


So today I did my first ‘endurance’ effort, with 3.8k in my local pool. Although it’s unlikely I’ll ever swim that far again (I just wanted to see if I could do it tbh), I did have a quick question about fuelling.

Cos I was in the pool I was obviously able just to stick a bottle and a couple of gels on the side, but what happens in a OW race? Are there people floating about at certain stages to hand stuff out if you want it or do you just have to keep going and survive based on what you’ve taken before the start.

I definitely hadn’t eaten enough before hand as I started to feel a bit light headed at points, don’t think the pool lights, turning and general monotony of it helped. But good lesson.


Ive done a couple of long distance open water races. First thing you can do is stuff a couple of gels in your swim cap. Roll on to your back, take the gel, stuff the wrapper back under your cap or down the front of your wetsuit.

Most races will have some sort of feed. At a smaller local event there was a wooden pontoon and those doing longer swims, 5k+ could leave a bottle/gels on there and use as required.

When I did Consiton there were boats in the water every 1 mile. They had cups of drink and sweets. It was good for refueling but also helped break the distance down. Plus they fixed my goggles when the strap broke.

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Oh that’s really interesting thanks. Yeah having the stations even to just split it up into stages would be quite a psychological help. Cheers.


It was the only thing that got me through it. I was well trained for the event and confident I could do it. But when I stood on the edge of the lake before and saw how big it was my confidence evaporated.

So i just aimed for the next boat. Its only a mile, thats easy. Then the next boat etc.

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Is this not the silution Swim & drink

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Sorry :kissing_heart:
I try not to be mean to slow swimmers.

Where’s @sowler and @gingerbongo then?

I tried to be part of this thread, but all of the acronyms and stuff went way over my head.

As I was getting out the other day, a woman with a swim
Club cap on got in. I watched her do about 5 strokes (9-10) until she reached the other end, flipped and was back before I’d had a chance to register what had just happened.

Truly amazing to see.

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Had a national level Breaststroker giving a demo master class at the club last week, he took 4/5 strokes per 25, mainly because his underwater phase was so good (no 15m rule in BS just single fly kick, one pull, one Br.kick, and have to breakout before the hands have passed the shoulders on the second stroke)


Now OW swim season is well and truely underway, I can get a better idea of my form. I am currently OW swimming around 2:03/100m which is around 15s faster than I was last year

In Roth I swam 2:06/100m, so I recon I will do 1:50/100m this year. I could be faster as last year I wasn’t strong enough to hold a draft from better swimmers, I am pretty confident that I can draft much better this year. This would give me a swim time of 1h9m, which is a little disappointing.

I have 7 weeks until Roth, and plan is to swim at least 5 times a week, 2 coached sessions and 3 OW sessions


Where do you find the extra 15s/100m on race day?
I’d say go and swim 4km open water and that is probably gonna be your race day swim time :+1:t3:

I tend to find my race day pace is exactly the same as my normal Open water pace.
I was swimming 1:25-1:29/100m in the pool last year for my “main” sets. My open water pace is dismally slower, as I’m a flip-turner and dolphin kicker indoors :sunglasses:

My 4km sets for last year went as follows;

4km pool swim in 1hr and 10 seconds :sob::see_no_evil:

Open water, 5 laps is 3.9km ish (I’ve clocked it at 3,915 to 4,047), so let’s say it’s accurate at 3.8km and I’m just awful at swimming straight;
63mins skins (sweating so much I couldn’t get my wetsuit on)
59mins (flat out)
62mins (IM effort)
61mins (a bit more than IM effort, a bit hard!)
58mins (flat out)

Those times translate awfully at race day, I think the “sense of occasion” gets to me;

I managed IMUK swim in 65mins as my sighting was truly atrocious and I ended up swimming 4.1km :joy:
Managed 6th in AG for the swim, which was inside the Top 50 overall.

Outlaw I managed a minute faster, but probably had a better swim, as I got kicked in the eye and had to put my goggles back on and do some breaststroke as I composed myself.
Managed the 52nd quickest swim here, but that includes relays, so probably inside Top 50 again.


Sort of related to this, I was going to put this in Outlaw Half thread but this is probably a better fit.

As Adam posted I swam 39:14 yesterday which is (sadly) my fastest swim at that event. In the pool on Friday I did a very comfortable 34:xx 1900m with open turns and gentle push off the walls. With the TT start format I had zero aggro in the water but could feel myself start to get really anxious after ~200m, I had a panic attack in the water last time there and had to stand up and calm down. I was worried it was going to happen again, I stopped, swished my goggles as they had fogged up, set off again and was fine. Then it started again, so I repeated that and was fine again. As it started again, I realised that fogged goggles was probably causing this. With that I calmed right down and kept on (swimming all over the place). I also realised my form was shocking with too high a cadence, hand too deep on the pull with the water just slipping by. I slowed down the cadence and tried to swim as I do in the pool and started actually overtaking people. I was already about 750m into the swim but I suspect I was much quicker after that than before.

While disappointed with the time itself, I think I have a better understanding of the cause of my anxiety and was able to rectify my awful technique to less bad technique. Biff in the water never used to bother a few years back despite being a technically worse swimmer, in fact I quite enjoyed it. I always used to wear predators for OWS and they didn’t fog up until they were well used, so will get myself another pair.


I feel ya on that!

I’ve always had terrible anxiety in OW swims.
Just try to zone out of everything and focus on “what I can do” :nauseated_face::face_vomiting: (I hate all of that self-talk ‘crap’)

My first ever OW event, I had to be kayaked to shore.
FFWD to Southport Tri 2021, just a 750m swim and I’m walking after 100-200m :see_no_evil::joy:

I still get “The Panic” even when just doing a few laps of the local lake. Pretty sure my OW form is totally different to my pool stuff, which is a further reason why pace doesn’t translate.

So…it doesn’t matter where you’re coming out of the swim, or what speed you do it at, you can still have panic attacks :+1:t3: being able to deal with them is a useful tool to have :grin:


One of the key issues is that everyone treats OW differently to a pool which swimming wise its not majorly, unless conditions dictate. This is subconscious and it’s easy to see why, big wide open, underlying fear that you cant get to safety, fear of “the deep” and anything can trigger it. I have issues in the sea, even on holiday swimming up and down the beach, but always been reasonably ok in a lake. Only time was swimming over reeds once, thought they were going to entangle me thing is they were propably at least 2m below, i had to detour out to ease myself through the situation as i didnt want to stop there!


I often think the thoughts are ridiculous, but they still happen.

I’m super confident I’m not gonna drown in a pool,
So why open water?

When I used to swim at Bosworth, there were massive eff off fish. I used to poop my pants when I saw them. The size of a shark they were. :see_no_evil::sob:

Like you say, weeds and stuff are the worst, get a bit of that on my face and it’s game over.

I think that’s why my skins swim last year was quick - as I didn’t want to drown, so just had to swim fast :rofl:


This is it and it feels like a real visceral fear when I get it (if that makes sense) and is possibly why not being able to see anythign brings it on. I swam at the side of the lake as I know I can stop and stand there, if like you I could walk down the centre of the regatta lake at HPP I would be calmer :joy:


Im not scared of drowning. I know if I get in trouble my wetsuit will keep me a float.

But Im just uneasy of the stuff in there. being near other things I can t see. Not just wildlife, structures and odd things. Saw a video of people jumping of massive ship and swimming, no fucking way I could do that. Gives me the willies

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It’s funny how it affects people differently.

I don’t seem to have any issues in OW - love seeing all the wildlife etc underneath me

Back in Feb, swimming in the sea off Playa Blanca I swam right over a couple of scuba divers, just saw their goggles look up at me, I was surprised but just gave the ok sign and went on my merry way


I’ve only had a couple of race swims where I haven’t panicked. I need to get used to the water temp before I can put my face in and often don’t have enough time. Can do it when I’m on my own but I just float in the water for 10 mins before I try do a stroke.

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