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I went to the pool at lunch today as part of my "practising how not to drown" week. I bought a fancy blue swim cap, then realized that I looked like a dork cuz my ears were sticking out. <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif"> Newbie error #1. <img alt="blush.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/blush.gif"><br><br>
Newbie error #2 was I forgot to count my laps, so I have no idea what I did on my own power and what I did with the kickboard.<br><br>
I did a couple laps with the kickboard and then tried swimming from the deep end to the shallow end. UGH. I can barely make it. Out of 4 attempts, I only mode it without stopping once. I can do the backstroke no problem, but front was a big fat yuck. Very tired, swallowed water, couldn't breathe properly...the list goes on.<br><br>
One the plus side...my stomach feels like I've had a great core workout and I'll go back tomorrow!!<img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"> It can only get better.<br><br>
For all you swimmers...<img alt="notworthy.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/notworthy.gif"><img alt="notworthy.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/notworthy.gif"><img alt="notworthy.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/notworthy.gif">
 

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Hey WR4C, it does get better. I'd been a swimmer all my life. However, just a recreational splash around swimmer. I'd never done laps before this last year. I jumped in figuring that it'd be a breeze. That first day I had to quit at 100m.<br><br>
So, I got online and found the "0 to 1650" program. In 6 weeks I was swimming a "swimmer's mile" without stopping. Here is a link to the program I used: <a href="http://ruthkazez.com/ZeroTo1mile.html" target="_blank">http://ruthkazez.com/ZeroTo1mile.html</a><br><br>
Having a plan helps a lot.<br><br>
Also, I don't kick. Lots of triathletes don't. However, several do. There's no hard and fast rule.<br><br>
Keep trying. It does get easier. Work on your breathing. Good luck.
 

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It WILL get better! I promise!!! I went from not even being able to put my face in the water to being able to swim 2500yards of freestyle in about 4 months! I am NOT fast--but consistent!! YOU CAN do it!!! and CONGRATS on getting in the pool and sticking with it--it isnt easy for me either..I think I am just to darn stubborn to give up--LOL
 

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It will improve with effort. I may be odd but everytime I get into the pool the first 100-200yds is real difficult. Then I get into a rhythm and the strokes come almost like a metronome without that much effort. Speed, well that's another thing.
 

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It will get better. Start by pushing your head and chest down in the water more when you swim (swim downhill). That's usually the first mistake people make. Just keep working at it, and you will get better!!! I know it is frustrating at first, but everyone has to start somewhere.
 

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<br>
I have to swim with my ears out I get horrible swimmers ear! 14 years of putting drops in my ears every...freaking...day!!!
 

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It does get better!<br><br>
I was like you - I could backstroke okay but my crawl was non existent, as I learned during my first weeks of lessons (I could barely get across a pool without drowning WIDTH-wise, and I sometimes would actually go backwards on a kickboard)<br><br>
I actually stopped swimming for a few months after that horrid experience, then I picked it up again early last year. I'm still no great shakes as a swimmer, but I was able to get thru 700 yd of open water okay at my first tri Sept. of last year.<br><br>
If you haven't already, you should check out the <a href="http://www.totalimmersion.net" target="_blank">Total Immersion</a> website or any of the books (I like the book Triathlon Swimming made easy myself.) At the very least, the drills will help you find balance in the water.<br><br>
As far as swimmer's ear, if you're a big sufferer of that (I've had a couple of infections with water blockages myself), I've found these <a href="http://www.macksearplugs.com/product6.htm" target="_blank">Mack's Ear Plugs</a> have really done the trick for me.
 

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ROTTENSQUIRREL--I am the same way--it seems, almost the first 500y are hard and torture!--so either we are both weird--or maybe its common?
 

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Yes, it actually does get better. You can borrow my mantra from when I first started swimming: Relax. Rotate. Breathe. For now, that with lots of practice is all you need <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">. Stick with it and you'll be enjoying it before you know it.
 

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Dougie-Love the mantra, I might borrow it too!<br><br>
It does get easier. For someone that couldn't swim a few years ago I am now training for my first HIM<img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"> Keep at it! And good for you for getting in the pool.
 

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I was in the same boat last year at this time. Only pools I saw were at hotels. It didn't change for me dramatically until I took a few swim lessons in March 07, and by September I did a 2.4 mile swim. So definitely it will get better just keep swimming!
 

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If you can get with someone for a series of lessons, you may find that your confidence increases a bit more quickly.<br>
Ask around to see if there's a master's group that can recommend someone for lessons....or the Y, or your gym.
 

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Been there. Done that.<br><br>
I could teach you the fishdog - it's a freestyle arm stroke with a breast stroke kick - but you don't want to learn that.<br><br>
Try using a pull buoy - a floatie thing you clamp between your thighs. It keeps your legs up without kicking. This big leg muscles use a lot of oxygen and get you breathing hard.<br><br>
Also... S l o w down. Try relaxing - just floating face down in the water for a bit. Without moving forward, try turning your head to the side for a breath. Then try really gentle and slow strokes - staying relaxed as you move slowly forward. I tended (well, actually I still tend) to be be more like an egg beater (madly churning at the water) than a swimmer - just using all my energy trying to stroke fast and getting out of breath. Slow down and try to feel yourself move through the water.<br><br>
Keep at it - it'll come.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
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Oh YEAH!!!! I so need to hear this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
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Ahhhhh, kind of like the first 8 minutes of a run is awful for me, but after that it gets better and by 15 minutes, I'm actually enjoying myself. I can relate to that. Good to know.<br><br>
Thanks everybody for the encouragement, tips and awesome links!!!
 

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the whole "first 200-500yds sucks" is typical... and normal... it has to do with your rotation and/or muscular fitness. You're not rotating correctly which is causing you to stress all sorts of muscles which aren't used to it.<br><br>
It WILL get easier, just get into the pool as much as possibly. 4-5x/wk for short distances is better than 1x/wk for a longer distance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Wow, I can't even imagine swimming 2.4 miles.
 
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