At the age of 50, I've decided that becoming a triathlete sounds like a really good idea. Xterra for the most part or other off-road triathlon. I have a rather technical running trail at my home that I train on daily and I've been an avid mountain biker for several years now two thirds of my training is covered. The one third that isn't is swimming. Other than knowing how to swim, I have never spent that much time doing it. I'm a stickler for form and maximizing any training effort into quantifiable results. Therefore just going out and doing laps in the pool seems like the wrong place to start. Last thing I want to do is develop bad habits. So, the question is, with my very limited skill set in the water, but being pretty good shape, where is the best place to start my swim training?
It doesn't look like you received an answer to your question and I would assume you have started and worked on swimming for 2 months now.
Your question is too hard to answer with the limited information I know about your swimming as Total Immersion is not a cookie cutter program but a program that is based on every individual swimmer.
Continue to be a stickler for form and quantify your results.
Here are a few suggestions f you need help making sure the form you practice is correct or information on how to make your results quantifiable.
1. Watch Total Immersion YouTube videos
2. Ask a specific, detailed question in the forum
3. Pick up an old Total Immersion book from the Library (not the best option as our programs have evolved)
For a fee
1. Hire a Total Immersion coach near you that can check your form and/or write a program tailored to your goals
2. Register for a workshop near you
3. Purchase downloadable courses. You should start at the 1.0 and then progress to the 2.0. If you enter coupon code coachteresa, this will trigger a small discount.
Coach Teresa has sound advice for improving your swimming.
Beginning with a self-taught course, and then finding a Coach in your area or one you can meet a few times and then keep in touch digitally is a great way to learn the proper technique for you. Many of the people that I coach come to me through that path. That way you are aware of the basic TI principles, and can improve with on-hands, individual technique coaching.
I completed my first 1/2 IM at 51...although I did have a base of training and shorter races, it was time!
Good luck with your training. Let us know how it is going!
Same decision... starting in the pool
Though I am currently trapped in NYC urban exile and jealous of the trails near you. I, at 49, have made the same decision.
I have little choice but to start in a pool and don't regret it. I also work really hard not to kid myself about the huge difference between the large bath tub and a dynamic body of water. I don't take breaks, I don't stand up, and I don't push off of walls all trying to build up enough confidence to feel like I can be safe in open water. (which I now do, and this spring I will test it).
I've learned swimming is much more skill intensive than either the running or road riding I do. (In the past I did a lot of mountain biking which is also very skill-intensive). So jump in the pools and really focus on your technique. Does it really matter if you're out in the woods or on a terrain park? Same skills you need to build, and keep real about your circumstances.
Congrats on your new triathlon journey at a young 50:-). Besides what Coach Teresa and Deb recommend you might consider signing up for a local triathlon open water clinic. OW clinics would cover and simulate both time trial and mass start swims, sighting, relaxation methods, swimming in groups and so forth. Of course designing (race goal) practice sessions in the pool and learning good technique are important and applying them in the open water will be helpful before race time. Perhaps joining some locale open water swimming groups or rallying up others who are looking to open water swim. Books, Videos, online courses are all helpful tools. But they won't replace the valuable hands on experience and real time feedback of having a good TI Coach.
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