New Forum Member? Introduce yourself here.

evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
edited May 20 in General Discussion
Title should be self-explanatory. If you've been lurking but hesitating to post, this is a good place to get it out of your system :)

Tell us who you are and what brings you to this strange corner of the interwebs...
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Comments

  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    Amazing we didn't think of this when we started. Doh!
  • Hi, my name is Dan and I'm a MSF'aholic! ;-)
  • JBirrrdJBirrrd Member
    "Hello Dan," we all reply.
    :-)
  • Cole_GCole_G Member
    So I haven't exactly been lurking and hesitating to post, but I am still a newbie so I figure I will introduce myself.

    My name is Cole and I am a fledgling marathon swimmer. I am originally from Texas and now live in Philadelphia. I swam competitively through high school and came to Drexel University to swim on the varsity team. I was forced into early retirement due to a combination of injuries and increasing school load just 2 years in. After being fat and lazy for a bit I picked up triathlons to get back to working out and competing. I did about 8 tri's over the past 2 years, but continued to hurt myself in them - partially from crash/accidents and more so from over training (gravity is as forgiving as water). So I decided to return to just swimming at least for a little while. I raced the Little Red Lighthouse 10k last year and loved it, so this year I am signed up for 6 total open water races the longest of which is going to be the 10-miler at Kingdom Swim.

    I joined this group for both wisdom and camaraderie. While I have a lot of experience training in the pool, I have no knowledge about marathon swims so I first came here for training advice. Additionally, even all of my old swim friends think I am crazy for doing marathon swimming, so it's nice to know there are other crazy people like me out there even if I haven't had the chance to meet any of you in real life yet.
    Fil
  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
    edited May 21
    Cole_G said:

    I swam competitively through high school and came to Drexel University to swim on the varsity team. I was forced into early retirement due to a combination of injuries and increasing school load just 2 years in.

    Hello, Cole!

    Funny about that 2-year mark in collegiate swimming. That was my experience too, and I've heard it from many others. Shit starts to get suddenly very real with school, and you start pondering the merits of two-a-day workouts vs... the rest of your life.

    Of course, I then proceeded to forget that valuable lesson 10 years later... lol.

    I meant to say... you have much to look forward to in this sport, my friend!
  • SFLSwimSFLSwim Member
    I have been lurking myself, soaking up a lot of knowledge and enjoying the posts on the Forum.

    I started on my first swim team when I was five and swam all the way through college. I love the sport and it feels like home - whether in the pool or ow. Like most swimmers, I am athletically challenged on dry land, but the tide may be turning as I age and my friends get more out of shape.

    I live in South Florida where cold water is below 80. Doing the Swim Around Key West next month. Always struggling to balance swimming, work and family (and reading this Forum). Looking forward to longer and colder swims. Thanks for creating and supporting such a great community.

    Michael
  • edited May 22
    Not so much a lurker as a snorkeler. I put on my mask and my air tube and I float on the surface amazed by the wondrous water creatures I see.

    Occasionally I'll dive down and join in the fun, but I know that I'm visiting a world that is foreign to mine.

    I'm Dredpiraterobts, it's been my internet identity for probably a decade or so. It used to be that if you Googled, all of the results were about me... alas.. there are now others, bat rastards!

    Nearing 56 (this Robtmas) I have been in love with the water since pre-k. I was always a stronger swimmer than others my age (which nearly cost me my life when I tried to save a panicking classmate by lifting him to the little raft on my shoulders, next thing I remember is Lynn Forie lifting me in her one arm and chicken poop Artie Mc Donald in the other).

    My first "long swim" was from the "big raft" (I grew up in a small town that had a pond as the local Summer swimming pool with a "little raft" near the shore and the "big raft" about 30 yards off shore.) My dad (may he RIP) was trying to make me a diver (my big brother was the diver for the high school team) and so I was "attempting" Half Gainers off the front of the big raft. It was not happening! So after a dozen or so tries I took a deep breath, tried the gainer once more, splat, and went deep. I then swan underwater nearly the whole distance to the shore before my father caught up with me and lifted me up by my bathing suit (Lynn Forie was there too, too) in front of the entire town. Nobody had ever seen such a feat! (I said it was a small town) and my father decided that I was a swimmer, not a diver.

    By the time I had hit 18 I was so sick of swimming up and down that guldurned pool I can't tell you. Water had lost it's appeal because I was Pavlovian in my response to it. Swim laps! I was the distance swimmer on the team and top 10 in the section for the 100 (3rd in the 500 which was just fine with me, I didn't want to go to States anyway!) But my coach tried to show me off to the college scouts by having me swim a 1650. That worked about as well as the half gainer!

    I did not swim in college. I spent the next "x" years trying to break myself of the lap habit, so that I could love the water again. I did.

    I have a place on the coast and I spend hours in the cold water riding waves. And there's a rock out there that is only there during low tide. I have been going to the beach my whole life (not exactly true) and never once saw a person swim to that rock. Until I did it (it's probably a half mile out). Everybody on the beach was impressed! (It's another small town).

    Things were fine until two things happened last summer. First was the Tattooed Love Boys one of whom swam out to my island! Pisher! Second was the direbetes. I knew it was happening, but... So now I manage my sugar by swimming laps.

    My first goal is to up the ante for the TLB by swimming around the other island (about 4 miles) and then by swimming out to one of the many islands 2 miles out and 2 miles back (it would be nice to come back). I tried to try to swim last weekend but 50 degrees was just too cold for me. Maybe if the sun was out, but whoa! (It reminds me that I'm not yet "there" when it comes to here.)

    I took for granted that knowing how to swim is what makes water so enjoyable for me. I LOVE
    doing flip turns, for example. Just like I love diving down into the depths to play, for a moment, with the creatures of the sea.

    This place is inspirational to me in that I feel that doing my laps is the price I must pay in order to be "worthy." I still live in a small town and I can't get any of my old swim team buddies to join in with me (they're still sick of swimming laps), so this community fills that void, somewhat.

    And I thank you for that.

    Oh, and one more thing. While it is true that I am a postaholic (I coined that term, true, but I can't prove it) I have one strict rule and that is that everything I say, I say on the public boards. I don't do e-mail, I don't do PM. It's just a rule of mine.
    Fil
  • New users: We have a Google Map with swim pods and locations. You might want to visit a forum member's location (such as Ireland's gloriously cold Copper Coast, hint) or add a new location, or join an open water pod. Check it out.
    phodgeszoho
  • OnceaRunnerOnceaRunner Member
    edited May 23
    I have been lurking since about May 2013 which coincides with my life-changing event that brought me here in the first place: I found out I have degenerative hips, needed replacement surgery on the right one and would never run again. All three of my doctors (I just couldn't believe the first two) told me to swim. So I started trying to figure out who I would become after being a runner for 30 years.

    I Googled around and found a bunch of articles, mostly the lunchtime threads, and jumped into the pool with little clue of what the heck I was doing. Seriously, I was swimming horribly, sculling, thumb first hand entry and almost eyes up. Ugh. I did take a stroke technique class this winter and that has helped immensely. I have completed an open water swim in a local river and got hammered by almost everyone at the event. Quite humbling, considering I was a decent runner, to be squashed, handily, by some very young children that were like freaking fish in the water.

    I am super motivated but completely clueless about everything. I am doing a 1.3 mile swim on June 1 and a 5k in August. I can only train at lunch time so I have to boogie to get the mileage in. Right now I swim about 2000 yds at lunch and I do that 5 days a week. I do "speed work" (or whatever you swimmers call it) and drills once a week and then the other 3 days I just pound out the laps. I still swim in my board shorts because I don't even know the type of suit I should get.

    My questions are probably routine:

    How do you feed in the water? I mean I need a picture or something. Where do you store the food?

    Y'all seem to have a serious distaste for wetsuits but how do you acclimate to the cold water when your only option is to swim in a 80 degree pool?

    Do I need to invest in kickboards, fins, snorkels and all the other toys people seem to bring with them or can I just swim?

    Farther or Faster? I coached adults and youth running for almost 10 years so I understand how to train the body, can I just adapt that to the pool? Do swimmers fartlek?

    How the hell do I stop smelling like chlorine two hours after a swim? I still can't figure how to get rid of raccoon eyes.

    Should I just jump in and do some long stuff? I did my first marathon at 19 in 3:45. I did my second one the next year in 3:05 because I hammered for a year. Can I just do that?

    That's enough pestering for the day. Seriously, you guys and girls motivate and inspire me. While I would rather be running this is pretty interesting and is definitely a new challenge.

    Thanks for reading.
  • danswimsdanswims Member
    @OnceaRunner, you are where I was not so long ago, 5K is now routine and I'm seriously looking at doing 10K and maybe beyond, so hopefully these will be pertinent comments.

    Keep doing technique coaching as much as is practical for you. The easiest way to swim farther and faster is to swim better by improving your technique and thus reducing drag.

    Your current training is easily sufficient for the 1.3 mile swim and OK for the 5K, but it will feel really long towards the end. If you can carve out time to do a few longer swims, even just once or twice, it would be helpful.

    No need to worry about feeds in a 5K or shorter, mine have been point to point without even an opportunity for a water stop and no problem.

    I've found water temps at or above the upper 60's really don't require any real acclimatising. Day of swim I like to get in before the event if I can to "warm up" but more to get over the initial "holy shit that's cold" response. If your planned swims are colder, I got nuthin for ya, sorry.

    If you really feel like you need a wetsuit don't be feeling like it's a cop out to to do so. It's your choice and you can always go skin later if you choose to. Getting out there and swimming the events is what counts, IMHO.

    Re: pool toys, you will likely accumulate some over time. No need to rush out and make purchases just because.

    Farther or faster, I say the answer is yes, Do some of both.

    You can either just own the chlorine smell as a badge of honor or look for ways to neutralize it. Another thread here talked a lot about Sodium Thiosulfate. At my house, particularly when both my kids were competitive swimmers chlorine is just what we smelled like.

    Your mileage may vary but to me "just jumping into" a really long swim has always seemed reckless. Nobody ever drowned running a marathon, and there's always a relatively easy way out during a run but maybe not so much in a long swim. Do your 5K and decide from there what makes sense for you to do as your next step.

    Hope this is useful
  • TimDexTimDex Member
    Hi my name is Tim and I think I have a swim problem ...

    Multiple sprint and Oly tris and Boulder 70.3 two summers back. The swims always bugged the crap out of me. I was what I now like to call others, a 'two lap slapper.' Blast up the pool or the first 50 yds in the lake, coughing and spluttering and then breasting it the rest of the way around the buoys. Very sedate and scenic but not good for decent swim times.

    Last fall, I made a determined effort to get my 'free' sorted out. I finally realized that freestylin' was a bit like running. You gotta slow down enough to be able to breathe with out coughing up a lung. Then work the speed back in as you get fitter/stronger.

    After several months practice and too much TI reading and watching videos, I had the longest slowest stroke in the world but I could swim free! An older lady told me at the pool that I had a 'beautiful stroke.' My wife commented that 'my strokes must bring all the gurls to the pool. Yeah, my stroke, is better than yours' Yeah, I didnt laugh much either.

    Since then, I have sped my stroke back up and got faster and now Im regularly knocking out 5Ks in the pool. With our winter and so called spring here in Colorado, its been pretty much pool, pool, pool. I had a great trip out to San Diego in March and I got to swim in La Jolla Cove with my wife and the seals. But thats been it for OW time.

    I have to admit to of being completely ignorant of so many swim only events but Im so glad I have found them. I have also discovered this great community which has been a gold mine of information and direct help (thanks Mike.) Knowing that, after an 8K in the pool, when my shoulders are aching, others have just got started in an ocean swim and will swim 10 times that distance, Im in complete awe of you all.

    You remember I mentioned I have a problem. My first reasonable 'race' is this Sunday, a 2.5mile splash around the buoys in Denver. Then again in July for 4.8 miles. Then the Horsetooth 10K in August and finally StS in October. Greedy, I know it!

    We're going back to ol'Blighty (we're transplants) for a few weeks in July. Im planning a 5 miler in the River Arun near my old stomping ground where we used to live. Its tidal (up to 5 knots on a Spring tide.) It should be fun as long as we get the timing right. We're also driving up to Scotland to see family and I have almost convinced my wife to let me 'do a Davina' on the way and at least dip a toe in Loch Ness.

    If you'll excuse the pun, if you have not guessed. 'Im a jump in with both feet' kinda bloke and real pleased to be here.
  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsMember
    edited May 23
    @TimDex There's a race on 27 July during the River Arun Waterfront Festival at Littlehampton
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • NiekNiek Heiloo, NetherlandsMember
    edited May 23
    There's also a race there on 14 June link that starts at 13:00h 3.8km from Arundel to Littlehampton
    They write: "The start will be just before high tide during the 30 minute ‘slack’ water period, before the tide starts to turn."

    Maybe you can calculate forward from there for your own date and/or with help from these tide timetables. (they are for 2014)
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • gtswimgtswim Member
    I'm still a relative newbie even though I jumped right into the deep end of the pool when I first joined the forum.

    My background is a competitive swimmer in high school and college. I was a big fish in a little pond in high school; good enough to finish 4th in both my individual events my senior year at the district meet, but not good enough to qualify for the state meet. In college I was middle distance/distance swimmer who could be relied on to get team points in dual meets, but not good enough to qualify for the league championship team.

    Out of college I coached the YMCA age group team, a middle school team and high school team for about 6 years. In that time I also swam masters.

    Fast forward to getting married an having children and building my career, swimming and any kind of working out took a very distance back seat to anything else. In 2005, we had an overweight cat and the vet wanted us to monitor her weight. We purchased a bathroom scale. In order to weigh the cat, one of us has to weigh ourselves first and than step back on the scale while holding the cat. I stepped on the scale and was shocked at how much weight I gained and decided that night to get back in shape.

    Since that fateful night I've dropped and kept off 70+ lbs. I started swimming again in 2008, graduating from doing just cardio workouts the elliptical and stationary bike. I thought about entering a local lake swim but didn't have the courage until my oldest son who was about 8 at the time, entered an karate tournament. I figured if he could put himself out there, I could do the same and entered the 2.5k race. I did better than expected and did the race again the next summer. I did even better, improving my time by almost :30. The following summer I entered the race again with a goal of improving still and if I did I was going to enter a 2 mile race at another lake later that summer. The 2 mile race went extremely well and I decided to commit to training for the 5K the next summer.

    So, last summer I entered the 5K and far exceeded my expectations so here I am getting ready for the GCBS in 2 weeks. Should this go well, I'm hoping to enter the true marathon swims with the possibility of the Kingdome 10 mile next summer.

    I joined this forum to get as much information as possible about doing long, open water swims. From training (I love the lunch time, average set and monster set threads) to nutrition and feedings to reading about other's experiences with the mental aspect required to doing a long swim, this forum has been a blessing.
  • flystormsflystorms Dallas/Ft Worth, TXMember
    "How the hell do I stop smelling like chlorine two hours after a swim? I still can't figure how to get rid of raccoon eyes."

    Chlorine rocks! Wait until you sweat it out on a hot day. Wear it with pride.

    Raccoon eyes? Loosen your straps a bit to the point where they're just holding the googles to your eyes. You'll be surprised at how much looser you can make them and still be water tight.
  • wendyv34wendyv34 Vashon, WAMember
    You only smell like chlorine for 2 hours?

    I have a co-worker who licks his arm to smell the chlorine again throughout the day. He's been seen doing it at long, boring meetings…day dreaming about getting back in the pool.
    It's always a bad hair day when you work at a pool.
  • Thanks for the words of wisdom @danswims! I found an outdoor lap pool that has hours that work in my schedule so I can hopefully get in some longer sessions a couple times a month.

    @flystorms - I'll give the loose googles a try at my swim today Thanks for the advice
  • TimDexTimDex Member
    @Niek Thanks for the heads up on the Arun swims. Sadly my trip to the UK falls right btw those dates. There seems to be a fairly regular contingent of solo Rive Arun swimmers. We have also purloined a kayak from a family member so the wife can shout at me to swim faster :)
  • msathletemsathlete Member
    Hiya!

    I am fairly new to the forum. I've been lurking in and out for a few months but recently decided to go through each of the threads. There's a lot of very helpful information in there.

    I've been open water swimming for about 6 years and marathon swimming for about 2. What fascinates me most about the sport is how far/long one can go.

    Looking forward to reading more.
  • WarmWaterWarmWater Member
    Hello, another lurker who finally signed up. Came into MS through over training for Olympic distance triathlons and realized I enjoyed the open water swimming aspect best, so am toning down tri's and rolling into marathon swims. Did the Kapas- Marang 6.5km straight line swim from an island off the coast of Malaysia back to the mainland on easter sunday which I thoroughly enjoyed and have the Bali Ocean Swim 10km on 6th July. Have one eye on the Straits of Gibraltar swim for next summer.

    Have learnt a lot from the site already, so good to be aboard and look forward to swopping notes.
    Richard
  • athleteathlete Member
    Hi, I'm Eric and I have a swim problem.

    "Hi Eric"! ..........thanks

    I did a few Ironman tri's and an open water 5k, and have fallen in love with swimming. I realized I had a problem when I started trying to leave work early to get in my next swim.

    I was fortunate enough to get registered in Swim The Suck, and can't wait. I still have lots of work to do, but am already hooked.

    I really enjoy learning and reading about your trials and tribulations on this site.

    Cheers!
    Eric
  • AshaAsha Member
    Hi Everybody,

    My name is Asha. Fairly new to the sport (have been doing it about a year). I was a competive swimmer way back. I've put my deposit on a pilot (Eddie Spelling) for Aug. 2016 English Channel. Suzie D. is my first and really only connection and I'm grateful for her.

    Just wanted to say hi. I hope to be on here more and more regularly.

    All Best,
    Asha
  • suziedodssuziedods Member
    BTW Asha is like, dude, REALLY quick.....
    I love swimming
    www.suziedodsswimcoaching.com
  • tortugatortuga Member
    I'm Bill, live near Raleigh, NC and swim like a turtle. I've always been more of a vigorous participant than a competitor. I've been doing tris for several years now, a couple of IMs, Triangle OWS series for a while, a couple ultra runs (first 100 last Apr) and love a good challenge. I'm signed up for Swim the Suck this year and will do the Swim for the Potomac 10k. I have a 50 mile run the Sat after the Suck so I'm trying to increase swim endurance and maintain run endurance at the same time. Wish me luck.

    Cheers,

    Bill (La Tortuga)
  • A fellow Breaking Bad fan I see.

    Good luck, tortuga.

    Good luck as well to Asha. A year in and aiming at the Channel!
    Not to say this wrong, but I was surprised to see how many women are big time in this sport. And not at all "Second tier."
  • j9swimj9swim new york Member
    i've been hanging out reading the threads for probably the last year or so and have learned so much, so thank y'all. its really great how there's this place for people to share their knowledge and experience for this amazing passion that we all share. i'm in my 5th year of OWS, no background to speak of except swimming to the dock at brookside as a kid and vacations at LBI. In 2010 i did my 1st one - a 1 mile in the Hudson in a surfer wetsuit and 19 days from now i'm going to swim Stage 6 of 8 Bridges - 15.7 miles down the Hudson from the TappenZee to the George Washington Bridge, its been quite a journey. I'm lucky, i live in NYC where there is a big OWS community who have been really supportive and welcoming...and i think this forum does the same. So from the slow girl in the slow lane...a big THANKS to all who share and support!
  • KarenTKarenT Charter Member
    @dredpiraterobts One of the biggest problem facing women today is the expectation that we will be found on the second tier and forgetting to look on the first tier where we've been all along.
  • KarenT,

    My intention was to recognize the uniqueness of this sport and to recognize the women who participate in it.

    If my comments somehow offended, I will take that as evidence of my own unrecognized misogyny. I apologize.
  • xj3xj3 New Member
    Hi everyone. I just found this forum as I am looking for advice for my 10.7 mile Portland Bridge Swim.

    I swam in high school and after a long break got back in shape with triathlon. I ran a marathon last year, and it was torture. Even though I am proud of the fact that I was able to run a marathon, I thought why not stick with my first love? So this year I am focused on swimming.

    I love reading the posts here, people are so inspirational. Wish me luck.

    XJ3
  • swimm4rswimm4r Member
    edited June 10
    Guess i should introduce myself as well. Hi, guys my name is Roger. I found this website a month ago...did a bunch of traveling since then and finally logged back in yesterday. I was motivated to start swimming after a day at the beach; that day i saw an older gentlemen swim up and down the beach 6 times, knowing that the beach was just a little shy of a half mile i immediately wanted to achieve these feats! After a sharp learning curve and a lot of swallowed water, i'm a self taught swimmer. Some years later im still swimming that same beach. Im very grateful to have stumbled across swimming in general, and to have such a great body of water near me (Lake Tahoe). I mostly swim alone so its refreshing to read a forum where everyone has so much experience to share. Experience: off the coast of Alcatraz to AP(partial suit), and a 10mi East to West crossing of Tahoe (wetsuit).
  • KarenT said:

    @dredpiraterobts One of the biggest problem facing women today is the expectation that we will be found on the second tier and forgetting to look on the first tier where we've been all along.

    Spot on Karen. This sport has a long history that many aren't aware of.

    Time travel back 20+ years and you'll find that Penny Dean and Shelley Taylor-Smith beat ALL of the guys. Time and distance is the great equalizer and separated the women from the boys.

    When I was racing during the old IMSA days (when a marathon was 25K or longer; not the 10K made for TV sprint), names like Burton, Hazen, and Bowman were to be respected. Failure to do so would end in an ass-kicking. Shelley shot by me at the end of Manhattan 1998 for the win. I feel no shame for this :-(( (Boat driver screwed my course. That's my story and I'm sticking with it!).

  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    @KarenT, I tell my daughters that they can succeed in this sport against all comers. I liken marathon swimming (especially extreme distances) to Iditarod (yes, I'm serious). Iditarod doesn't have classes of racers based on the sexes. Neither does Equestrian. NASCAR. American Idol.

    Seriously, though, I like to point things out to my girls when I get a chance. I remember a day when I was in the shoppette on base and in front of us in line was a female brigadier general. I explained to my then 10-yr old that in the Air Force (and the other services) it doesn't matter what your sex is. If you're a hard worker you can reach the pinnacle in your career field. (Fewer than 1% of officers make it to one star general.)

    I learned a long time ago, being raised by a strong-willed (and strong-bicep'd) Italian mother and two sisters that women can do whatever the hell they put their mind to. And that it shouldn't affect me at all. When I ran my second (and last) triathlon in 1984, I was dying in the 10K. For miles 3-5 I ran with Ruth, who turned out to win her 55-59 age group. I was in such pain, while Ruth commented on how beautiful the scenery was and asked me if I'd be doing the triathlon next year. All I wanted to do was lie down and die. I told Ruth I'd see her at the finish as I stopped to squat and then roll over to all fours and try and stand back up (my thighs were killing me). I saw Ruth at the finish. She had managed to find my father and sister and tell them how much fun she had running with me.

    Ruth got first in her age group. Her 10K split was around 50 minutes. My 10K time was 1:10. I was 17.
  • HansHans New Member
    Hello. I have been following you all for a while for handy hints and tips, so thought it best time I signed up and got involved/help...
    I'm Hanna and I am fairly new to OW after I decided to get out of the daily pool lengths and try something new, but now I've started - i'm hooked!
    Am swimming my first distance event in a few days (5k) and am hoping after that to step my training up and make the 10k by the end of the summer. So all advice welcome on nutrition/beating cramp/feeding/anything and everything.
    I won't waffle on, but hello all - and thanks for your background help thus far!
  • Dale88Dale88 New Member
    Hi
    I have just joined up as this is my second challenge. Marathon Swimming.
    I am doing my first 10K followed by a 5 K then 4K,4K, 3.9K.
    Its the 10K that scares me. have been reading some of your training and swimming programs. it seems that it's all in the "FUN " of the swim rather than the "WIN".
    I will try to remember this. Dale
  • dudleymvdudleymv Member
    Hi! I started swimming open water last year when I was tired of pool swim meets and fell in love with this sport. I just competed in the GCBS this past weekend, and I am looking to end my open water season with a marathon swim, I applied for the Bridge and Back 10 mile race in Richmond in October and am hoping I get it!

    Here is my race re-cap from last Sunday for anyone that would care to read and give me advice on my race for any upcoming events.

    http://riahswims.blogspot.com/

    Thanks!
    Mariah
  • gtswimgtswim Member
    @dudleymv I read your re-cap. I too swam the GCBS this past weekend. Not only was it my first time doign the GCBS, but it was my first truley open water swim. Up to this swim I've been spoiled by doing lake swims with limited chop and current. Your re-cap sounds exactly like my experience, almost right down to the finish time.

    Congrats on the swim.
  • wendyv34wendyv34 Vashon, WAMember
    When your swim feels tough, long, painful, scary, negative, etc. refocus on how great you are. You trained hard for this all winter, you're an awesome swimmer, you do this for fun, you have what it takes to get through this and you love swimming!

    Where else would you rather be right now? How many other people on the planet would even consider attempting what you are doing? Someone who knows you thinks you are a rockstar. You are so going to deserve that four cheese pizza tonight!

    Think about your technique. Make your stroke as smooth and pretty as you know how. You're almost sure to feel better in a few minutes.

    So, to summarize: love, fun, technique, rockstar, pizza!

    My goggles refused to un-fog tonight at the first race of the season, but I thought "heck, I've swum this course enough times that I can do it with foggy goggles!" A little more challenging, but I still won the pie. Mmmmmm….pie!
    dpm50
    It's always a bad hair day when you work at a pool.
  • dudleymvdudleymv Member
    @gtswim Glad I wasn't alone in my experience! Congrats on your swim as well! I've been spoiled by the James River, with a predictable one direction current and the only chop is from the occasional boat. But I still loved this race and I am planning on doing it next year!!
    Thanks @wendyv34, I definitely need to work on staying positive in my swims, that self doubt is harder than any chop or current, if I can conquer the mental part the rest will be...well...easy as pie!
  • MoosieMoosie Member
    Hey ALL, Just wanted to drop in and Introduce myself. I'm out of Idaho so I have no cool pictures swimming in the ocean but I love seeing the blogs and pictures of those of you that do that. I'm looking forward to reading some Archived posts and catching up a little when I have time.
  • I've been trolling the forum for the past few months, preparing for my first LOONNGG open water swim.

    I am 57 years old, began endurance sports at 45 with my first marathon run, Chicago. I am not fast at anything, and have only 2 ways to stand out: 1) outlast by continuing to participate when I'm over-90, or 2) outdistance. I began triathlon after 3 marathons (each one slower than the first...wrong trend) and essentially my first OWS at the Escape from Alcatraz Tri...big mistake! I panicked and couldn't get my face in the water, switched to breast stroke, and tore my MCL with 100 meters left in the swim. I had an unstable knee but was able to bike, but the run was reduced to a walk, punctuated by f-bombs, passed by and attaboys from octogenarians and amputees (but no octogenarian amputee) I'm sure many assumed I had Tourette's.

    Again, not fast but I progressed to 70.3 and then 140.6 distances. But my favorite part of any tri is the swim, surprising to me since I could not envision swimming beyond 200 meters when I started. I had a great swim training group in Nashville where I lived, led by Ashley Whitney, a gold-medalist in 1996 Atlanta games, a champion open water swimmer (winner of Swim the Suck last year). That group fostered my growing love for open water swimming. My wife and I moved to the Eastern Shore of Maryland 2 years ago, and bought a house on the water near Cambridge MD....open water 10 meters out my back door.

    Rather than compete in the Eagleman 70.3 this year, I decided that I would focus on a long swim as my A-race. I tried to get into the GCBS, but lost the lottery. I then tried to register for the Swim the Suck, but slept through my 1:00am alarm, awakening at 1:40 am to find out the race had filled in 30 minutes. CRAP! Then I decided Swim around Key West would be a great venue, to learn it had filled 1 day prior! Then I discovered that there were 2 Swims around Key West, and registered for the FKCC Swim around Key West held this past Saturday. In preparation for that race, I was searching this forum for training/feeding/ distance tips. I also registered for a Key West specific training plan with EpiTri, Kari Duane, and it was perfect.

    Completed FKCC Swim around Key West (well run swim by the way) this past Saturday, and think the 12.5 mile swim may have been more difficult than IM race, but that may be a memory bias. Have other's experienced that? Pretty painful for the last 3 miles, but I felt a great sense of accomplishment, and plan to continue with marathon swims..Hence joining this forum. Thanks for having me!
  • @sjwhite, nice to meet someone in my neck of the woods. I, too failed to get into the GCBS this year and am planning to try again next year. Hopefully I will see you there!
  • FrancoFranco Member
    Welcome @sjwhite and congratulations on your swim.
    You and @OnceaRunner can find some local events on The MSF Calendar

    http://www.marathonswimmers.org/resources/swims/northern-virginia-washington-dc-open-water/

    There are a couple of nice events on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in July
    The MD Swim for Life is always a fun event with distances up to 5 miles near Chestertown on the Chester River.

    A week later is Swim Ocean City entering its second year if you are up for a nine mile ocean swim. I'll be back this summer for what was a fairly challenging swim last year.

    Feel free to PM me if you have any questions about the local events.
  • thanks very much, i think I may sign up for the 3 mile Ocean City. I also have Maryland IM in September so a lot of my training from here on out will be geared to that. But Key West was my goal for this year so Im happy. Ill try the 9 mile OC swim next year!
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    @sjwhitemd and other NoVA, DC, MD and close swimmers. If you've got any calendar items that need to be added to the calendar @Franco mentioned, pm me and I'll get them added.
  • I have to thank @IronMike for keeping that calendar up-to-date. I have planned all of my swims this year from that thing and have yet to be disappointed. I am still debating the ocean city swim since I have never done any ows in the ocean at this point and still learning proper form and technique. Maybe I will see you all there.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    @OnceaRunner, please check out my lessons learned on the 9-miler last year. I can recommend OC for an OW location, but definitely do some salt water/ocean training prior to swimming it. And get a good hotel early.

    It's my pleasure to keep that calendar up to date. We'll need someone to take it over soon as I'm moving this summer.
  • tortugatortuga Member
    sjwhitemd said:


    Completed FKCC Swim around Key West (well run swim by the way) this past Saturday, and think the 12.5 mile swim may have been more difficult than IM race, but that may be a memory bias. Have other's experienced that? Pretty painful for the last 3 miles, but I felt a great sense of accomplishment, and plan to continue with marathon swims..Hence joining this forum. Thanks for having me!

    I haven't done a marathon swim yet but I'm sure your Key West swim was more difficult than IM. I've done 2 IMs and a 50 mile run is by far more difficult. I'm thinking that swim is close to the effort of a 50 mile ultra.

    You should be proud. All of y'all are badasses in my book.

  • haigoohaigoo Member
    Hello Everyone,

    I've been soaking up information from this forums for the past several months, and wanted to take the opportunity of this thread to introduce myself. I live in Los Angeles and am training for Catalina 2015.

    While I have a fair amount of pool and pond experience, open water is relatively new for me. I'm planning an 11 mile training swim out of Rockland, Maine for next month, which I am sure will be a huge learning experience.

    Thank you to everyone who has been so generous with all of their posting in this forum-- it has been an invaluable resource as I continue to train and plan.
  • pavlicovpavlicov Member
    Hi everyone,

    I have been reading the forum here for over a year. I read your blogs, your race recaps, your stories swimming channels almost daily. Personally, I always swam since childhood but never more than a mile.

    5 years ago I started swimming more and I love the ability to go places while swimming. I became a boat observer for MIMS and since then I hope that one day I can circumvent the Island too. So far, I did the 6.4mi Red Lighthouse Swim 3 years back (it is current assisted), several Governor's Island swims and Liberty Island swims, and the last weekend I swam 3.1mi Steelman Swim (very nice swim on a lake in NJ).

    I am currently training for 5mi Coral Reef Swim in Virgin Islands. The distance does not scare me as much as the time limit. I recently swam 10k yd in the pool but I still cannot get my speed below 2min per 100yd.

    I will be traveling to SF August 22th-27th (with my parents - the trip is my gift to them) but I would not want to interrupt my training schedule. Do you have any recommendation for OWS or at least indoor swimming pool? Which thread can I post my questions?

    Thank you,

    Martina
    loneswimmer
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