6. Pacing yourself, well almost…
Just like the run or bike, you don’t want to burn yourself out that you can’t get to transition. You have either gone to fast or you used up too much energy in the swim. Solution? Pace yourself, well almost….
Swimming doesn’t really affect your legs as much, but it does affect your aerobic system. You can take bigger risks in the swim by going a tad faster and surging compared to running or biking. Remember, don’t go too hard where you dig yourself in a hole. Stay with someone who is slightly faster and you will guarantee a PR in your next race.
7. Warm-up and Get Ready
Warming up is great, but not all races allow it, or if they do you can’t go in the water because the lifeguards aren’t on duty yet. For an early season race with cold water you want to get your body acclimated to the temperature. As with all triathlons, warming up your arms and lungs will get you ready, have less fear of being in the water, and help you go full gas from the start of the race.
8. Get a coach
You can always hire me, but getting a local coach is a must to excel in swimming. Having someone help you with your stroke can be an invaluable asset to your arsenal of triathlon tools for race day. The better your technique is, the faster you are and the more efficient you become. Easier said then done right?…
9. Practice, Practice, Practice
Practicing skills, technique, and speed is still at the core of everything. If don’t put the time in at the pool, how can you expect a great result at a race? Practice not only in the water, but with a wetsuit, and sprinting out of the water to simulate T1. The more time in the water now, will help establish fitness that you can’t erase in the future.
My last tip for you is to race. Getting faster in the water, getting comfortable and everything I said above is great advice, but the more you race the better you become. There is no way an Olympic triathlete only races a few times in their career to get where they are. They consistently practiced, prepared, and raced. They had failures and just as much success. Building on things you learn when you race can get you to that next level you might be seeking. Beginners should look for indoor pool swims to start out, then migrate to a lake or river, and then to the ocean. Find a race you like, train with your friends and race to have fun.
Don’t let your training partners or anyone else make you second guess your training. If you follow these rules, you’ll see benefits not only for this year, but will build fitness and strength for the future. Just remember, having a coach will help you through all of these steps and more.
Article by: Alan Kipping-Ruane
- TriGuy Multisport Coaching, LLC -