I now have 3 open water swims completed. For the first one I just wore a tri-suit topped with a swim shirt for warmth. The initial adrenaline rush from the thought of being in the open water prompted me to take a short break on the boat before getting in again to swim and bring my total time in the water to about 20 minutes.
The next day, I needed to try out swimming with my recently purchased, used wetsuit. Watching a youtube video on how to put on a wetsuit was helpful. This other video also gave me insight, but I haven’t tried using the tri-slide he mentioned. The plastic bag seemed to be all I needed.
The size charts said this suit should fit me, but I think it was too tight. Nonetheless, it did wonders for my figure. I managed to swim a few hundred yards in it, then took it off and swam with the swim shirt for immediate comparison. If the water had been any colder, I might have seen the benefits of a wetsuit, but my final conclusion is that I will NOT use my wetsuit in the upcoming Cascade Lake Triathlon. It constricted my breathing and interfered with my swimming form.
Greg got on google satellite to estimate our total distance at 1300 yards. We both find swimming in a straight line to be impossible at this point, so give ourselves credit for a little more distance. We only need to swim 750 yards for the triathlon, so I’m feeling more relaxed about being able to do that.
I swam in Cascade Lake again yesterday, sans wetsuit, for somewhat over half a mile. I ended up swimming breast stroke about half the time in an attempt to stay more on course. It is very difficult to tell how much distance I am covering no matter which stroke I am swimming when I am actually in the water, but I could swim breast stroke all day. If it’s in a straight line, it may be faster in the final analysis!
The experience was intensified by a boat pulling a waterskier gleefully circling me in the no-wake zone. In some ways I learned from it, being exposed to very heavy waves, but it was at the end of my swim and when the white caps started building, I decided to take advantage of my companion canoe crew and hitch a tow to the dock. After 4 days of training, I need a day of rest today, then tomorrow the plan is to go bike and run on the actual triathlon course in Cascade.