swimrun training

How To Use The Winter To Become A Swimrun Superstar!

The winter is a useful time to build strong foundations. Swimrun.com contributor, Alex Sheen shares some of his top five tips for using the winter wisely.

Becoming a swimrun superstar is about being the best version of yourself while not losing sight of those important things such as family or friends, the offseason is a great time to make progress.

1.Add some drag

Make your swimming sessions harder with some training toys. Drag reduces the effectiveness of your glide phase forcing a higher arm turnover, perfect for open water swimming. A few ideas below:

  • Try the Fike Weighted Pull Buoy instead of your super buoyant on. Wear drag shorts for all of your pool sessions to better simulate the drag from swimrun gear.
  • Practice with a swim parachute to maintain the feeling of swimming with a tethered (very slow!) swimmer.

2.Learn some new skills

The offseason is a great time to work on some other skills to help your swimrun game.

  • Learn to map read to help plan your own backyard adventures. Study how water behaves with a book like ‘How to Read Water’ and be better prepared next time you’re in open water.
  • The offseason is also a good time to try some larger paddles, or work on changing your running technique as you have time to adapt to the changes before races start again.

3.Get in the cold water

Don’t shy away from the cold water. Keep your body acclimatised with some winter swimming. You don’t need to swim properly, just the process of being in cold water routinely through the winter will pay dividends in the summer. Find a local group that “swimbles” (social swimming) in an open water spot, or just get in a bath in the garden!

4. Set some training goals

If you haven’t got any races booked for 2023 yet, set some alternative goals like a 10k personal best, or improving your critical swim speed to keep you focussed and give your training some structure.

5.Slow down

It’s important to not be go go go all the time. Enjoy the glory of what you have accomplished this year and that neither land nor sea could hold you back.

See your family more, they are often the first to suffer from our absence during race season or intense training periods. Enjoy being in nature when you are training, look at the light through the trees, the ripples on the water, slow down and savour the beauty.

Alex Sheen

Alex discovered swimrun in 2021 after stumbling across it on a sports retailers website during a “renaissance period” of athleticism after many years away. He is now totally hooked and is passionate about getting others to give it as go!

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