Posted by: Tina | July 14, 2010

Open water swimming still sucks

I’ve been practicing my open water swimming, and so far it still sucks. After my run yesterday, I went for a very brief trial swim in my sexy new wetsuit. That swim I did in the race a few weeks ago was clearly not a complete game changer as my open water swimming fear quickly reared its ugly head as I entered the water yesterday. It was a cloudy and remarkably cold Okanagan day so the water seemed menacing and I was very alone in the water. I didn’t get far before I turned back. And I felt dizzy and nauseous after only 10 minutes in the water.

This morning I went out for a bit of a longer swim, with my dad, daughter, and niece trailing behind me in a canoe. It was a sunny day so there wasn’t the same evil overtone to the water and I managed to hold it together for about 20 minutes. I even made it over some patches of sparse weeds without panicking. I’m glad I didn’t see an anchor or I might have lost it.

I think swimming with a hundred other people lessens my fear so I know that although practicing is never going to be pleasant I can be pretty confident that I will not be crippled by fear in a race situation. However, the bigger problem is how dizzy I get when swimming in open water. I don’t know if it is the open water or the wetsuit, but I have felt dizzy three of three times that I have gone open water swimming. This does not bode well. I did a bit of research and have read that earplugs may help, so I went and bought some this afternoon and will try them tomorrow. I shall report back forthwith.

Oh, and one other point, I think I just need to practice, practice, practice. I’m sure my body will get over the fear and vertigo if I pummel it into submission.

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