Riding for a Reason

Changing the world, one mile at a time

6 Common Worst Case Scenarios for Open Water Swimmers and How to Avoid Them

I found this great article on active.com about worst case scenarios during an open water swim and how to avoid/deal with them.  Here’s the article below…

By Alex Kostich
Active.com

Every athlete ever to skid, stumble, or crawl across a finish line has a race-day horror story to share.

Triathletes and cyclists recall getting a flat or going down on the road. Runners compare notes on excruciating cramps, blisters and shin splints. But perhaps the most anxiety-inducing tales come from swimmers, who live in constant fear of experiencing their worst open water moments again and again.

Lots can go wrong in the water; after all, we evolved to live comfortably on land. From losing a pair of goggles at the start of a race to experiencing a debilitating cramp in deep water, swimmers have it rough.

Below is a list of the most common open water Worst Case Scenarios, and how you can prevent them from occurring—or at least cope with them should they come up in competition.

Ways to Avoid Having a Worst Case Scenario Become Your Worst Race Scenario

1. Losing Your Goggles

Nothing is more dispiriting than rushing into the water at Continue reading

August 31, 2009 Posted by | Triathlon | , , , , | 2 Comments

Another unfortunate triathlon death

I read the new this morning, only to find out that the third life has been claimed from triathlons in Wisconsin this year.

It is very unfortunate.  As  the popularity of this sport grows, so too do the deaths.  The basis of doing a triathlon is so positive and has the capability of changing your life for the better.  It is so easy to get wrapped up in those feelings, that you overlook the physical challenges of competing and any potential health risks that you have.

Triathlons are great because it’s an experience shared by people of all walks of life, all shapes, sizes, and ages.  It has the ability of sucking you in and pushing your body to it’s limits.  In reading about the last 2 deaths, it appears that all of these individuals had been training for at least 8 months, which is about average for a new triathlete.  They had most likely already made that lifestyle change and gotten into the routine of building their endurance.  Unfortunately, I think that sometimes the least amount of training comes in the most serious leg of the race.  I too, am guilty of this.  It’s very difficult sometimes to plan for training in a pool.  If you don’t belong to a gym and don’t have the availability of a local pool to practice in, it can be difficult to build up your endurance.  While it is true that the beginning of the race generally gives you an extra boost of andrenline, it also can put more stress on your heart, especially when the water temperature is still relatively cool in the early morning.  On top of that, many times, that first triathlon is the participants first time swimming in the open water.  The current, waves, 50+ people in the water with you, and not having a lane line to follow adds stress on your body and anxiety that can cause you to rush your breathing and shorten your stroke.

For others that are preparing for their first triathlon, make sure you have had a physical in the last 12 months.  Try to discover any Continue reading

August 10, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments