As indicated previously, open water swimming has been an ongoing battle for me. In the pool I can easily cover the distance and in the open water I should be able to easily cover the distance. As I am not competing in a triathlon till next year I have some time to iron this out. Difficulty lies in the reduction in available months the local lake temperatures will cooperate.
I outlined my earlier issues and diagnosed my problems in two earlier posts: part 1 here and part 2 here. So the ground work and the analysis has been laid. Since then I have added sighting and breathing practice sessions to my swim training sessions and I have worked some issues out that could be resolved in a pool. On Saturday I have another open water swim opportunity so I wanted to come up with a game plan and setup definitions for success. This is important as it gives me a very attainable and clear goal to shoot for.
Primary goal: I will not get myself into a crawl before I reach the first buoy. Often I wear out my arms by panicking and getting out of swim formation before I really even start. I plan to put my head down and not stop swimming till I get to the second buoy and the shallow area to stand. If this is the only thing I do on Saturday I will be very happy with myself. This is a major first step I need to overcome to become a good or adequate open water swimmer.
Secondary goal: Keep my breathing steady and use a 3 stroke to breathing pattern and sight ever 3 sets or so. I have practiced breathing and sighting and believe that I have the mechanics worked out at this point.
Secondary goal: Finish all 850 meters or so without getting into a crawl. This is really a minor goal, but figured I would set it up just in case things go really well from the primary goal, then I have another goal to aim for.
So that is it. That is my plan and definition for success. I think having this goal set, while it may seem a little low, it is the most important piece to make the remainder of my open swim goals possible. Til next time…