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Thread: Open Water Training

  1. #1
    Participating Member
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    Open Water Training

    I am going to be competing in several open water swims this summer ranging from 1 mile to 5k - my main training this winter has been IM / Stroke in preparation for US Masters Nationals. Should I continue this training which has elements of OW training(300 swims, 100 swim sets, 200 swim sets etc), I have plans to compete in some long course meets this summer if my schedule allows. Looking for suggestions on what will give me training to be able to be competitive in both areas.

    Thank you for your help!

  2. #2
    Participating Member
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    Re: Open Water Training

    One training element that has been really helpful to me in the past is doing one swim a week (or every two weeks) in the open water. This will give you skills that are hard to practice in the pool such as swimming straight, sighting long distances and dealing with murky water. I can't sign-off without saying to always bring a buddy if there isn't a lifeguard.

  3. #3
    Very Active Member Gary P's Avatar
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    Sep 2014
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    Monticello, IL
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    Re: Open Water Training

    How frequently can you train, and for how long each session? Specific suggestions will hinge on that.


    After focusing almost exclusively on pool events for the last two seasons, I'm training for open water events this summer as well, aiming to peak for a 2 mile event. I do long interval sets (for example, 20 x 200 on 3:00, holding a 1:20/100 pace) in an attempt to build endurance, but also do at least one long, continuous swim (minimum 1750 yards) every other week at a slightly slower pace (currently ~1:22/100) to try to build some muscle memory of the pace I think I can hold for the entire race. About 2 weeks out from the event, I'll dial back the interval pace to match whatever continuous pace I'm at so that I'm locked in by race day. Based on my experience racing 1650s in the pool, I can only imagine how miserable it might be to go out even a smidgen too fast in a 2 mile open water event!

    I do one short-but-intense race pace set a week for each of my two best pool events to keep sharp on those. If I was planning to compete in pool events this summer as well, I'd probably double that and call it good enough.
    Last edited by Gary P; May 11th, 2016 at 12:26 PM.

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