Mainly use the energy from your pushoff to get deep
(3, 4 or 5 feet underwater)
don't rely on your kick to get you there.
Do rely on you kick to maintain your speed and accellerate as you rise.
Push off HARD, excellent streamline then SDK fast
there's also a shallower mainly gliding version of the suit surge for distance swimming. The Suit Surge might add several feet of gliding to each pushoff.
If do a shallow pushoff you're going more through more turbulence and currents and there's little potential energy to surge.
You have to hold your breath slightly longer because you're gliding further.
When you do it correctly you'll feel your body going down then rising up.
You want to experiment to find your sweet spot.
kicking too soon IS wasting energy, on needless effort
the first thing you do after you push off is glide.
Fast dolphin kickers don't change their kick.
There's some great SDK footage on youtube.
The suit surge works best for those who can kick fast, if you do it but can't kick fast you're needlessly deep wasting time struggling to get to the surface.