Calling all swimmer/triathlete friends: I need your help.
I figured this might be a good place to crowdsource some knowledge — not just for me, but for anyone else who finds themselves in a similar predicament.
After almost 20 years (yep, dating myself there) of running, I’m mixing things up with more cycling and swimming — thanks, in large part, to the encouragement from my fellow Coeur Sports teammates.
Throughout last season, my #bikelove blossomed — from learning how to clip in to completing an Olympic distance race to long group rides on weekends.
But my #swimlove? Er, not so much.
See, with running and biking I feel like the mechanics are pretty self-explanatory: one foot in front of the other, one pedal stroke at a time. Sure, we can shave off seconds and prevent injury by fine-tuning form and fitness, but once you have a grasp of the basics, all it takes is time and practice.
Swimming, on the other hand, is not something that feels intuitive. At all. And although I took the obligatory swim lessons as a kid, I had to re-train myself to do laps last year.
I can wrap my head around the movements — stroking, kicking, breathing — and get myself back and forth across the pool for 30-45 minutes, but there’s still something missing. Basically, I feel like I’m not moving smoothly or quickly enough for how much effort I’m putting in.
So my mission for 2015 is to figure this out once and for all, and — aside from knowing that I need some outside help — I’m not sure where to start.
That’s where you come in.
Step one is to whip myself into shape in the pool, then step two is to (eventually) translate that to open water. But how?
I know I need someone to watch what I’m doing, tweak my form and help me worth with, rather than against, the water…but I’m stumped on the best approach: instructor vs. coach, personalized assessment vs. lessons from scratch, one-on-one vs. group, etc.
At this point, I’m not looking to get primed for a specific event; I just need to train to be able to train, if that makes sense.
But please don’t tell me to join a local masters program. I tried that in SF and got left in the dust with a group who said they were too slow to train with the actual masters group at that pool. Between getting lapped a gazillion times and dealing with smug looks from a Michael Phelps body-double, I’m not keen to try that again anytime soon.