Monday, 16 June 2008


This weekend I managed my first proper open-water swim of the year. I did have a rather poor attempt a few weeks ago but this was the real deal. I got up nice and early on Saturday and had a lift down to Weymouth my Alex who had agreed to put up with me for a swim. I suspect he just said yes to stop my wife nagging him while he was shoeing her horses.

Weymouth looked pretty close to perfect for swimming on Saturday. The sea was dead calm and the sun was shining. Although the beach at Weymouth is stony once you get a few feet off-shore there is a nice sandy bottom that shelves so gently that the water is still only a few metres deep a long way off-shore. There are also loads of buoys moored in the bay that are ideal for swimming markers. If there was one thing I could change it would be the temperature of the water. This time I was properly equipped with wetsuit and swimming hat but it was still very chilly on all the exposed regions.

Alex did Iron Man UK last year but assured me he had not been training since and would be terrible at swimming after so little practice. So of course, as I expected, he was far faster than me. However, I felt much more comfortable in the open-water than I did last year. Once I forced myself to slow down and relax after the initial shock I felt quite good. I don't know that I am a huge amount faster than last year, but I certainly feel that I am using far less effort to go at the same speed. I also know I still have a long way to go. But with the Bournemouth Triathlon just a few weeks away I am confident that sea swim will not be a problem.

We spent a good 45 minutes swimming around the bay from one buoy to the next and by the end my sighting technique was coming back to me and I felt really good. Only problem was once I got out of the water I realised my wetsuit had rubbed the back of my neck (again). Need to sort this out as I can't have a rash every time I go swimming in the sea.

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