Monster swim session planned…… pool packed with floaters & kids…. Why don’t they understand I have a race in a few weeks!!! I need to get a 4k session in and home in 90mins!
Seems to me, that no mater how carefully I plan my session, that when I show up at the pool, its full of floating bodies swimming diagonally, keeping their hair dry.
Over time I have found a few tactics that work and some that don’t… here’s my top five of each!
1. Have a quick friendly chat with the guard when you get into the pool… ask him/her where you should swim. Often they will herd the crowd in a different direction from you without you knowing.
2. Pile your gear at the end of the lane you want to use…. Taking time to warm up at the end – kind of makes you look like you own the lane.
3. Start with slow stuff, breast or kicks….. and get your drills done early…. Hopefully traffic will spot you and move out the way.
4. Practice your sighting or polo drill during crawl – double benefit of missing the traffic and building the open water skill.
5. Work together with other “proper swimmers” and create your own channel. Double benefit of taking up less total space as well as having less gaps for icebergs to float into. Don’ts
1. Go anywhere near jumping kids…. It’s not worth the risk of a spotty teenager landing on you and wiping out a season.
2. Flip turn when anyone is in your area…. Its just not worth the hassle of a collision.
3. Try to swim over someone – this ain’t a race – keep it civil!
4. Wear a Mankini! … you will get the pool to yourself, but they tend to show up on facebook😉
5. Race the fat bloke who jumps in and swims 25m with helicopter arms and sagging legs – you just screw up your own 500m session, and he will keep on trying until he can beat you over a length or gets taken to hospital.
My experience is that people will try to help and move out the way, if you are open, friendly and speak to them…but sometimes I just stop, have an ice-cream, then go for a run!