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Help training for swim part of 1/2 Ironman relay? (Read 84 times)

jshea


    I'm a distance runner and will be doing on a relay team doing a 1/2 Ironman in June. For some reason, I agreed to do the 1.2 mile swim.

     

    My main goals in this are to finish (no time goal, though I think the cutoff time is around 1:10), to use this as cross training, and have fun. I've run one marathon and am looking towards a second next fall, and I think swimming weekly will help my overall fitness and strength.

     

    Ideally, I'd like to swim once a week - I don't have the time (or honestly, the desire) to commit to more than that. Yeah, I know that's not a lot, but like I said, not trying to finish fast - just working on general fitness and to be able to complete the distance.

     

    I'd love any tips for how to make the most of that once a week workout, how far to go, what the swims should look like, training plans to use as I progress, etc. Most training plans I've seen so far are meant for the actual triathlete (not a relay), and involve swimming 2-3 times per week. Any input is appreciated!


    runktrun

      What's your swimming background?  Can you comfortably swim freestyle for 100m without tiring out and grabbing the side?  Can you swim and tread water in open water without panicking or giving a second thought to not drowning?

      Not running for my health, but in spite of it.

      kittenkatkk


      English Villain

        I've done every distance up to Double Ironman and I'm never going to be a fast swimmer. I never bothered doing drills and sets, I basically just built up the distance. So do that each week, start with swimming for say, 30 mins (or less if you can't do 30 yet) and build up by time rather than counting lengths.

         

        Oh and do some open water swimming if your tri is going to be OW. There are certain OW skills that can't be gained in a pool.

         

        Good luck and enjoy Smile


        delicate flower

           

          Ideally, I'd like to swim once a week 

           

          Like you said, that is not a lot of swimming, especially if you are new to it.  If you are a new swimmer and want to be able to swim 1.2 miles on once-a-week training, that is going to be difficult.  I went from a brand new swimmer to half iron in a year on 3-4 days a week swimming, some one on one coaching, and masters sessions.

           

          I'd focus your workouts on just building up your distance.  Don't worry about drills.  You need to spend time in the water and get your comfort level up.  If the swim will be wetsuit legal, training with a pull buoy will help you swim longer and it simulates the buoyancy of a wetsuit.

          <3


          runktrun

             You need to spend time in the water and get your comfort level up. 

             

            Yes.  Why I asked about your swimming background.  There is a huge difference between people who have been swimming and competing since they were 8, no matter how slow, and adults who are just learning to swim.  The former usually have a level of confidence that is hard to develop as an adult.

            Not running for my health, but in spite of it.

              I've done every distance up to Double Ironman and I'm never going to be a fast swimmer. I never bothered doing drills and sets, I basically just built up the distance. So do that each week, start with swimming for say, 30 mins (or less if you can't do 30 yet) and build up by time rather than counting lengths.

               

              Oh and do some open water swimming if your tri is going to be OW. There are certain OW skills that can't be gained in a pool.

               

              Good luck and enjoy Smile

               

              ^ This.  I left the ultrarunning/marathon running world for triathlon three years ago and haven't looked back.  Honestly, swimming one day a week really won't do much for you in terms of speed.  Work on your form, which is the best thing to do, and add some open water swims to get yourself use to that.  Totally different than pool swimming.  Extremely important to learn how to sight.  If you suck at sighting, you can literally turn your 1.2 mile swim into a 1.35 mile swim just like that.

                1x/week isn't enough.

                Better said, I would never have finished if I was swimming only 1x/week.

                To swim (beyond surviving) you want to feel the water.  You want to feel propulsion.  Without it, you'll be fighting the water, and that isn't fun.  It's like running 26 miles when you're trained to run 2 or 3 miles.  Will you survive?  Maybe (hopefully)... (almost certainly).

                Will you regret not swimming more?  Almost certainly!!!

                Try to swim 2 times a week.

                Try to do more frequent short swims.  Like after a run or a spin class or a trip to the gym.  10 minutes.  You'll prepare better swimming 60 minutes / week doing 6 swims of 10 minutes than you will 1 swim of 1 hour.

                You must feel the water or you'll be in hell.

                 

                With that hat being said.... you have a biker and a runner that are counting on you to complete the swim. Don't be THAT trialthon relay guy who got a jet ski ride back to dry land because you weren't prepared for the 'marathon'.

                Cheers,

                2017 Goals:

                #1: Do what I can do (200+ training days, 200+ aerobic hours). 

                #2: Race shape (1/2 marathon, 2 half Ironmans, marathon)

                #3: Prepare for 2018


                Canadian princess

                   

                  Yes.  Why I asked about your swimming background.  There is a huge difference between people who have been swimming and competing since they were 8, no matter how slow, and adults who are just learning to swim.  The former usually have a level of confidence that is hard to develop as an adult.

                   

                  ^ this

                   

                  I took years of swimming lessons as a kid but when I signed up for tri geared swim class, it turns out that I couldn't really swim. That class kicked my add.I spent a lot of time working in my form and doing drills. I also have a friend who is a swim coach with her own private swim studio. An hour with her was well worth it. Good luck.

                  jshea


                    Ah yes, I left that out. I never swam competitively but am comfortable in the water. I can swim about 30 minutes or so with minimal stopping at the moment. All of these posts have been helpful - thank you!


                    runktrun

                      Then it sounds like you have a good starting point!  Swimming 1 x week won't get you to a point where you'll be competitive, but you'll be able to finish just fine.  30mins should get you pretty close to 1.2mi, so mix some longer swims with some drills, as others have suggested.

                      Not running for my health, but in spite of it.