Originally Posted by Suddethb
Anyone have advice on their swim experiences in tri and what the normal rules and availability of hydration during a race are? Should I be pushing my training routines to include 60 to 90 minutes without hydrating? I have a friend who loves to tri, but doesn't like the swim (I'll be preaching TI to him of course.) I've offered to join a relay since I have bad knees and won't be running nor doing much heavy biking but thanks to Terry I now love to swim!
I'm swimming about 6 miles a week in a pool and just completed my first open water event (BSA Mile Swim test in the Chesapeake Bay in butterfly). I'm usually hydrating every 10-15 minutes during laps, and drink a bottle every 60-90 minutes of swimming with an average session being about 1.5 hours. I've frequently gone a half hour to 45 minutes without a drink as part of my training for BSA mile swims, but I haven't gone past that time. The 2.4 miles of the tri would probably take me about 60-75 minutes depending on the pace I can do in the water and the current.
When I'm in the pool, I hydrate regularly. However, I don't bother with it for an open water swim of that distance. I just drink plenty of water before I get in and keep water at the shore for when I finish. I live in a very dry climate, and I don't notice any ill effects.
Since you have two more events to go after the swim, I would say take any water they offer you just to keep up your hydration level. If they don't offer any, though, I think you'll be just fine.