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Open Water - what is cold?
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SGreg




Joined: 30 Jun 2010
Posts: 863
Location: High Peak

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, if you are racing early and/or Preparing for a cold water swim/race its an unfortunate necessity. Its why I forced my self before Lanza*.

But if its just impatience to get going in open water when your race isn't till June/July (September in my case) there is little to be gained.





* With hindsight, Freezing my ass off in the keys bore little resemblance to swimming in the Warm crystal clear Atlantic. But you live and learn.
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rocky79




Joined: 19 Apr 2017
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="SGreg"]
PCP wrote:


I Guess we are disagreeing on how cold 12DegC is then as to me 12degC IS absolutely freezing. And as said I doubt many lakes are up to 12 yet! The OP with Zero open water experience has plucked that figure out of thin air.



Its the sort of temperature that requires me to get in and then get out 30 secs later through shear pain! next dip may be a minute, then full submersion of the feet, where numbness allows the pain to recede THEN I'll repeat the process with my hands, then my face. after 10 mins or so I am able to actually swim a bit. But still constantly worried about getting cold. Usually ends in a very unproductive session, where IF I had stuck to the pool it would have been very productive.

1-2 DegC More and I can just get in a swim.

I swam in the Salford keys in April/May (10-12DegC) before Ironman Lanza and there was absolutely nothing pleasant or productive about the experience. The time would have been much better spent doing something... anything else.

Swimming now achieves nothing but making you look HARD on the internet. Unless you are preparing for a cold water swim.



Back to the OP, If you really fancy it, go for it, just be very prepared it could really go to #@?#. Don't let that fool you once the water warms up a little things will be very different, UK Lakes can be quite pleasant once the suns been on them a few months.


Temp is posted on their Facebook page quite regularly and actually was 12.7 at the weekend. So wasn't plucked out of thin air. Bray lake not too far from here are saying 14c.

In any case, all points noted on it the benefits of waiting till it warms up significantly to get the full benefit. I'm signed up to an event on 17th may, so was keen to get out and give it a go.
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Ade




Joined: 27 Jul 2010
Posts: 512
Location: Leics

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You definitely don't want your first OW swim to be a race. Go and get cold Smile
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Tri'ing Swimmer




Joined: 15 Nov 2016
Posts: 95

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rocky79 wrote:


I'm signed up to an event on 17th may, so was keen to get out and give it a go.


I'd agree on giving it a go in that case. If you struggle, then at least you know what you're letting yourself in for so can go back, get used to it and will be easier on day. Plus it should warm up, and you might think its not too bad anyway.
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SGreg




Joined: 30 Jun 2010
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Location: High Peak

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep should have said that from the off, Go get wet

Laughing
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Tin Pot




Joined: 08 Jul 2013
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Location: Bromley

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it was 12/13C last year when I started lake swimming. 2XU Wetsuit and two caps.

It is darn cold, but not face numbing for me. It's the air temp when you get out that you have to watch, uncontrollable shivering hit me after getting out. Got about 45mins continual swimming in IIRC.
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Jgav




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PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So the lake I intend to go OW swimming just posted that they are at 14.9 degrees. Can that be right for this time of year?
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explorerJC




Joined: 20 Oct 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jgav wrote:
So the lake I intend to go OW swimming just posted that they are at 14.9 degrees. Can that be right for this time of year?


yep, small lake, reasonably warm winter...
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Tin Pot




Joined: 08 Jul 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jgav wrote:
So the lake I intend to go OW swimming just posted that they are at 14.9 degrees. Can that be right for this time of year?


Positively balmy. Speedos and sun cream only.
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Ian A




Joined: 28 Jan 2010
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Location: Leicester/Haworth

PostPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2017 11:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you aren't used to it 12 degrees will feel cold when you first get in the water and quite likely cold for your head. Get in slowly and let your breathing settle. If your head feels cold then you can submerge your head a few times before you start swimming or start with head in the water breast stroke. You'll get used to it quickly and your body adapts to the feeling of getting into cold water over time and how long you can stay in it. You don't want your first open water experience to be in a race if the water is cool and you aren't used to it. It's nothing to be concerned about, just expect it may not to be easy the first few times.
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patriciaa




Joined: 22 Nov 2008
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Location: Amazingstoke

PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 11:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

8 degrees is cold for me and 12 degrees comfortable and 15 degrees warm and 20 degrees very warm - It's a matter of genetics, body fat content (protects against cold), capacity to produce thermogenesis (blood surface capillaries (blood vessels) developing to create a thermal insulation barrier i.e. going red with a brown fat barrier - you can achieve the latter within 2/3 months of regular cold open water swimming by going progressively), and whether you are actively swimming vigorously or not. Be careful with cold open water swimming, hypothermia is a silent killer. Ideally have a thermometer to measure the water temperature, be careful border and shallow water is warmer than deep water and middle of lake or sea water. Listen to your body - you can increase tolerance to cold water swimming, but remain vigilant. Don't shut down your main organs due to cold setting in. Check yourself red = good (thermal barrier protecting major organs, you should get tired but not dizzy) white = danger (you're losing body heat rapidly, stay close to the shallow water and be ready to exit, particularly if feeling drowsy and slowing down) - I only wear wetsuits when compulsory during a race. Some people can go down as 2 degrees. I've never been down more than 8 degrees. At 8 I only tolerate 1 hour. At 12 I tolerate 3/4 hours. at 10 I tolerate 1-2 hours. It also depends on my cold water training, if I regularly swim in cold water or occasionally. If I train regularly I can go down to 8. If I've been out of training for a while 12 is cold and I can only do 30 minutes! Cold water training is fun, makes you close to nature, is wonderful, you tan too. But do remain safe - listening to one's body is key - and tolerance is not absolute but relative (depends on exposure to cold water, amount of training, dependant on personal genetics, and fat content, and amount of swimming done). Take care Smile enjoy cold water training
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rocky79




Joined: 19 Apr 2017
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So had my first swim tonight. Apparently 14.2 c . Felt a bit cold getting in at first but outside temp was around 10c so was better in than out. Had initial bit of brain freeze but did as everyone said took my time getting in. Then it was fine.

Didn't swim too far. Loving swimming in a wetsuit, being new to swimming I struggle a bit with sinking legs then a manic kick to recover my position, so a wetsuit is perfect. I can concentrate on my technique and breathing.

Thanks all for the advice.
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Tri'ing Swimmer




Joined: 15 Nov 2016
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My first OW swim of the year this morning. Twenty minutes in the River Trent and only managed about 250m, has wiped me out too. Mojo 1/2 in two weeks so praying lake will be warmer, or do I really need to work on acclimatisation?
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Ian A




Joined: 28 Jan 2010
Posts: 109
Location: Leicester/Haworth

PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tri'ing Swimmer wrote:
My first OW swim of the year this morning. Twenty minutes in the River Trent and only managed about 250m, has wiped me out too. Mojo 1/2 in two weeks so praying lake will be warmer, or do I really need to work on acclimatisation?


Did you feel wiped out because you were very cold at the end? It's common to be physically tired after a cold OW swim, especially if you swam without a wetsuit, and can take an hour or two to properly warm up again if you pushed your cold tolerance to the limit. The energy your body uses to warm itself up afterwards will tire you out. If you only swam a small amount in the twenty minutes and spent a lot of time stood around in the cold your core may have started to get cold. Once you get moving in the water a wetsuit does a good job of keeping the warmth you generate in and the cold out.
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Tri'ing Swimmer




Joined: 15 Nov 2016
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PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ian A wrote:
Tri'ing Swimmer wrote:
My first OW swim of the year this morning. Twenty minutes in the River Trent and only managed about 250m, has wiped me out too. Mojo 1/2 in two weeks so praying lake will be warmer, or do I really need to work on acclimatisation?


Did you feel wiped out because you were very cold at the end? It's common to be physically tired after a cold OW swim, especially if you swam without a wetsuit, and can take an hour or two to properly warm up again if you pushed your cold tolerance to the limit. The energy your body uses to warm itself up afterwards will tire you out. If you only swam a small amount in the twenty minutes and spent a lot of time stood around in the cold your core may have started to get cold. Once you get moving in the water a wetsuit does a good job of keeping the warmth you generate in and the cold out.


Yeah tired from the cold exposure being bit too much when tired from tough week the week before. 36hours later I didnt dare leave the porcelain throne either so definitely regretted trying the swim.
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