View Full Version : Training Advice Needed!!!

May 21st, 2003, 08:58 PM
I am planning a 9-mile open water swim at the end of the summer, 2003 from Michingan City, Indiana to New Buffalo, Michigan.

I just got back from masters nationals in Tempe and plan on taking about a week off(I'm bushed). I began training for the 400 IM and 500 free this past year. I faired pretty well in my age-group.

I plan on doing a lot of long distance training this summer paired off with some 5-mile swims from a boat to the coast. Does anyone out there have any other good training advice for this kind of swimming adventure?

Mark Urban of Illinois Masters


Leonard Jansen
May 22nd, 2003, 09:21 AM
Sounds fun!

Of course, there are a million ways to train, but here is one:
Try swims of 1-3 hours where you swim for about 30 min at a stretch at a strong, steady pace and then take 30-ish secs to get some Accelerade (or your favorite drink). Throw in 2 or 3 harder efforts of 5 minutes in each segment, but don't stop at any point except for your drink breaks. This is a good pool workout, because it lets you cover the distance without going completely insane from endless laps without variety. Of course, you should work up to whatever effort/distance you attempt to cover - don't just jump in and do 3 hours the first day.


May 22nd, 2003, 11:33 AM
Definitely do some open water swims that prepare you for the distance. If there are some 5 or 6 mile swims, do them. Try doing an extra mile or 2 afterwards. If all you have is a 3 mile, try doing a double after a short break. You will need to be prepared to swim for 3 hours and that is very different from shorter swims.

Think about what refreshment you need--I need liquids, usually Gatorade, on a swim of that length. Figure out your break pattern and start trying it--every 45 minutes is probably more than you need but if your goal is to do the swim comfortably, it puts you in a comfort zone.

Check your swim gear. If you are wearing a body suit, test it to find out what chafing you have. In a 9 mile swim, a chafing point that doesn't effect you in a 3 mile can be a gaping wound at the end. This may be less of a problem in freshwater but make sure.

Good luck.

May 22nd, 2003, 03:30 PM
Thanks a bunch for your advice. I'll be hooking up with my friend who swam the English Channel so I'm sure he will have some advice, but he can get a little quiet and non-informative at times, but maybe that is because we have been swimming indoors all winter. Once we hit the open water who knows what will happen.

I won't be wearing a suit as far as I know. When I swam in Ireland last summer, the water was 57 degrees. I warmed up rather quickly with two caps and my speedos. As long as the sun shines all summer in Chicago, the water should be about 75 or so.

I"ve already started doing small swims practicing feeding or drinking; it sure was a pain the first few times, but I now drink from a big-mouthed container to swig down, but not too much or I get bloated and gassy...yikes.

Thanks again...MU of IM