So on Monday I went up to Milton Keynes to All 3 Motion and spent time in their Endless Pool. I was very lucky to have Ironman royalty Mark Kleanthous to help me. This man has done over 450 triathlons so I knew I was in good hands.
Firstly we spent a few minutes looking at all the cool gadgets you can buy for swimming, my favourite being the bungee rope you tie to the edge of the pool and then around your waist so that you can swim in the same place. Great for when the lanes are busy or you are in a small pool.
Then it was time to get in the pool. First up, getting into a tri wetsuit. #fail. Not even going to go there. I was useless! Once Mark helped me get it on (I felt like a 5 year old) we got into the pool. It was such a cool setup. I'd swim into a current of water that Mark, depending how nice I was to him, would increase or decrease to see how I managed. I was then filmed at 4 different angles, (also scary as one of me is more than enough) to show the difference in my style.
We did a few minutes and then Mark went on a 10 minute rampage on all the things I needed to change. I honestly, A; cant remember most of them and, B; didn't understand the other half.
Here are some of the problems I can remember;
Head too low in water
Head to high out water when breathing
Breathing too far backwards
Dropping left shoulder too much
Putting arms too deep into water
Not bending elbows enough
Arms go across body too much
Stroke was too fast
Wrong hand position
Wrong finger position
Rolling body too much
Feet spread too far apart
OK! So it's fair to say I wasn't great. Mark then spent an hour working with me on different techniques in order to help me get more efficient. You burn nearly twice as many calories swimming as you do cycling so I needed to be as efficient as possible. He even got an old bike inner tube, folded it in half and tied a not in it, creating two loops for my feet so that I kept my legs together when kicking. Genius!
So there we have it. I didn't drown but have a lot of work to do. I learned two things. I need to take a notepad next time for all the tips and also I want an Endless Pool when I grow up!